Question: When you talk about fear in the process of letting go, in meditation, in awareness or when you are watching, one has a heavy reaction from the mind like a big fight that starts and then you’re so afraid of it that you just drop the inner part and you go back to the outer part.
AP: There is no method here. One has to live through it. One has to pass through this hell.
You can pass through hell only if you have heaven in your Heart.
You will have to live through it.
It is the smoke, your accumulated conditioning is burning. It is smoke, fear is the smoke. You will have to tolerate it.
Jesus said, “Only faith enables you to tolerate it.”
So, there is no shortcut here, no shortcut here. And fear will tear you apart. Fear will really make you tremble, shiver. Don’t then ask for a remedy. The only remedy is to go deeply within. The experience of fear, mind you, will be there. It will still be there.
What prevents us from just passing through this fear and be done with it, is the hope that one can avoid it and yet become free. Just drop this hope, you need not drop the fear. Drop the hope of some kind of an escape from fear. Drop that hope. Let fear be there and be certain that you will have to face it. That is the price you pay.
Fear is the smoke of the annihilation of the ego.
If the ego will burn, this smoke will arise.
L2: That’s the last thing you will want, the last thing, particularly fear of death.
AP: The more fear there is, the more you should know that some deep disease is at stake.
L3: As in? The disease as in?
AP: Fear means the thought that you will lose something. What else can you lose? Can you lose the Truth?
Can you lose the Truth?
AP: So what would you lose? What is fear all about?
L: The Ego?
AP: Yes! If it is really frightening, it is really good.
You know Kabir, because we are talking about the burning and the smoke, he has put it very beautifully. He says
Birehni odi laakdi sakuchaaye aur dhudhuaye
chhoot pade ya bireh se, jo sagri jali jaaye.
He says the mind is like wet timber; wet wood; wet firewood. What happens to a firewood when you try to set it a fire?
L3: It burns very slowly.
AP: It burns very slowly and emits a lot of smoke.
Kabir says our mind is destined to be burnt down. It is the destiny of the ego to be burnt down, to be reduced to ashes. But it is like wet firewood. It burns ever so slowly and that is why there is so much smoke. He says that there is just one remedy—
Burn down quickly!
The more you will postpone it using methods and processes the more you will just keep simmering and that is no good to keep simmering, to keep emitting smoke like that wet wood which is being set afire from beneath and is wet at the top. Division, contradiction; some part of it is burning and other part of it is not burning.
Division, contradiction. Burn down; totally burn down! And that will give you the only reprieve that is possible—that is the only remedy. He is not saying that there can be a way to lubricate this process, to make the whole thing easier for you. He is saying the only way it can become easier for you is that you let it happen quickly.
The more it stretches in time the more you postpone it, the more you will just keep simmering and that is no good—that is such a torcher. So let it happen here and now.
Face your fears right now.
And you are reborn.
~ Excerpts from a ‘Shabd-Yoga’ session. Edited for clarity.
Read more articles on this topic:
Article 2: Fearless Living
Article 3: Fearless action is your nature
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