I remember waking up by hearing my beloved daughter screaming in her bed in the middle of the night (at that time she was about 4 years old). I ran to her bedroom, relieved to see there was no immediate danger but still concerned about what frightenes her so much. She told me about the scary monster at the end of her bed. I looked around her room, but of course there was no scary monster. I looked again and than to my own surprise, there was indeed something that looked like a monster looming over. And just for a moment I saw what my little girl saw… and it was not a monster (of course not) but the shadow of something on the windowsill, brought to life by the moonlight which streamed through the window behind. And the moment I realized what the monster was made of, it totally disappeared for me. I recognized the monster was just a shadow. So for that I was not in need to do anythink to make it go away, it would dissapear the second the light would change by its own. But my little girl believed from the bottom of her heard that monster was real. She SAW the monster. She heard the monster. She smelled the monster. No matter what I said. No matter what I did. The monster was real in her world ! In her reality the only to survive was to hide under her bedsheets, calling me and hoping (!!!) the monster would eat me and leave her in peace (because after eating me, the monster „would be full“)! ( I am sure the list of problem solving strategies was in the beginning much longer… but somehow to immolate me to the monster must have been the best looking solution to her.)
The following night when my daughter screamed out loud at night, I bursted into her bedroom with a real weird costume including a hut made of aluminum foil and a noodlehz in one hand and a bottle filled with “monster-killing”-spray to face and kill that monster. And after a lond rough battle the monster left us defeated for all time. And so we lived happily ever after.
My point on this story is that that this monster was not real to me. I have an understanding about the nature of light and shadow. For that I knew that in the moment the light would change, the monster would transform or even dissapear completely! But in my daughters „world“ there was a hungry and scary monster willing to eat her! And it was 100% real to her.
So what occurs to me is that we are experiencing our own thinking about things. We are living in our own privat evaluation of things!
Let me give you another example: I live in Hamburg/Germany. And I love this city. I choosed to life here. I love this city full of life, the big culture scene, I love the mix of cultures, I love the air and the sound of the city. But there are days when I wake up in this city, and the whole city occures to me like the noisiest, dirtiest, smelly place in the world, filled with mad and stupied people. Do you See? Hamburg is the same every day…it doesn’t change that much over night But my evaluation does. And that is the only reason why this place seems to be the worst place of the whole world… and the next day it is paradise to me again. Just my thinking changed… and so my whole world.
So whether the monsters we face in our lives seems to be made of money, health challenges, realationships, work issues or even things that happens to us in the past, it is obviosly to ourself that the monsters are truly real. Because we are living in the feeling of our thinking… not the feeling of the world!
Looking back to many conversation (with myself and other people)
it either seems to me, that most time we are affraid of something we even cannot put into words… let’s call it the „UNKNOWN“. By definition “the unknown”, is simply something you have no information about and no control over. An example of this is the fear of the future! None of us know what the future looks like and how could something that even doesn’t excist yet be able to scare us? Most of us don’t let this future-fear-thinking get in our way. We plan and strive for the future we want without letting the uncertaunty holf us back. However there are other people… not knowing what the future holds is downright terrifying them. The uncertainty frightens them and they experiencing a state of hyperarousal ( a state of fear that continious to build up). The fear overwhelms the to the point, where they prefer to remain in their comfort zone.
Those people are not trabbed in the fear of the actual passing of time… what they are terrified of is their own thinking itself of a possible future that maybe will not turn out the way they want it to. In other words, we imagine futures where things go badly for us and everyone we care about, and we feel suitably scared each time we do. However, if you experiencing an intensive fear of the unknown, day-to-day life can be incredibly stressfull because of this constant fear. You may find it dufficult to function whenever you encounter something or someone unfamiliar! And because our thinking effects our nervous system you may experiencing one or more of these symtoms: dry mouth – shallow breathing – rapid heart rate – panic attacks at the though of the unknown – tense muscles – anxietx and a tendency to run away or avoid situations that force you to change your routine or face strangers. (By the way: your subconscious mind hates changes… your subconscious mind loves the known no matter how unhealthy, unproductiv or goal-killing itself is. Everything you are used to is SAFE, while everything new outside your ususally „comfort“ zone may causes death. Yes that is why changing routins is so hard, if you don’t know the trick on it).
Let’s play about this once more… Let’s have a simple thought experiment that you can try to put this to the test for yourself. It might scare you a bit, but I guess you’ll find it illuminating:
“It’s a pretty safe bet that at some point exactly one week from now, you will be having dinner. And even if your diet is relatively unvaried, what exactly you’ll be having for dinner is unknown.”.
How do you feel when you think about that?
Now: unless you’ve spent part of your life staving off starvation, not knowing what you’ll be eating in a week is unlikely to set off your internal alarm bells.
“But what if you started to imagine a global food supply crisis? And what if that crisis caused food shortages in supermarkets, and any food you had stored in your home went off?”
Man, I can feel my scary thoughts about THAT in my body!
What about you?
The obvious point here is: There’s no such thing as a solution to a feeling.
But if you see that your feeling is just an experience of your own thinking, the whole game changes fundamentally!
If we are aware of our experience of our own thoughs (of cause just in case there is no clear and present danger in that moment in our life!) in times we feel unfounded fear in our body, we are able to recognize this fear just as a symptom of our own imagination running amok. And because we see that it is just a thought in our head running mad, that means we don’t need to do anything about that.
Like you have been told when you ever attended at a Meditation-For-Beginners-Class or if you everr have been hypnotized : „Let the thought pass by. Don’t hold it.“.
Each one of your thoughts was brought to life by your own „consciousness mind“ . SO the only one who is able to decide what power this though has over you in your world is YOU! In just that moment we recognize fear for what it really is (a thought), we can decide to let it go by not foccussing on it anymore, it will fade into the background – like a television on over a bar or in the corner of a restaurant. Yes, we may not be able to change the channel, but it doesn’t need to occupy much of any of our attention. And from this diffrent state state of perspective , beeing in that relative calm and clarity (that we all have when we’re not caught up in our scary thinking), if there’s anything actually to be done to take care of ourselves, it will occure to us as generally obvious and relatively and therefore straightforward to implement.
With all my love, Birgit.
If you are experiencing such a thing as a longlasting thretening fear of the futurr I beg you to be brave and talk to someone you trust… it can be your best friend, a member of your church or a helping hotline. You also can contact me. You deserve a life filled with Happyness, love, success and respect.