July 17, 2017: Fearless, Independent Power

Today is the day I find out I have always been fearless. Who knew? Certainly not me! I am told, however, that people tend to notice me, that I have a power, an independent power, which makes me appear fearless.

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050 Lin Wei Long, Fearless Avalokitesvara by Anandajoti Bhikkhu under CC BY 2.0

I feel this power in many respects and yet don’t in other ways. I am not fearless, but I am discerning. A time exists both for heeding fears and for moving forward through them. Fears are useful in ensuring our safety, but fears can also be distant associations of bad experiences that have then been wired within our brains. To change these associations and to rewire our brains often requires a willingness to move into, rather than away from, our fears. So, in this respect, perhaps some fearlessness does exist within me, with the way that I am willing to be in the presence of and in the face of my fears.

In further reflection, experiences from this weekend and dreams from this morning also tell me about the relationships between this appearance of power and fearlessness and the potential awkwardness of it. For instance, I often have difficulty interacting with people whom I’ve placed on a pedestal of power or importance to me in some way. But now I am noticing how this might also be happening for people who would like to have interactions with me. Thus, the initial awkwardness of the situation must be overcome before any relevant interaction can begin.

To illustrate this further, I will share part of my experience from this weekend. As I attended a new event that included a mixture of sighted and visually impaired people, I noticed a greater amount of relaxation within me as I engaged in conversation. In doing so, I wondered if the lack of a clear visual experience of me had given people a different initial perspective, which prevented the awkwardness I often experience. Thus, perhaps the awkwardness I have often felt with others is the awkwardness they have in their initial visual perspective of me, of something they see and notice within me as powerful and fearless. Then, perhaps within these projections I then feel awkward and actually become fearful of them.

Is this as absurd or funny to you as it is to me? It’s my own fears associated with power coming back to hit me in my own face!

In having this awareness, I am reminded of the quote from Marianne Williamson that says “our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.” Reflecting further on this expression, I’m led to wonder what it would be like for all of us to be fearless enough to show, express, and be present within our own personal, independent power, within the powerfulness of our own hearts. I think it might be doable and yet really awkward at first, as it seems we are more comfortable in presenting our inadequacies versus our powers. If we were to do so, what might this look like? How would we see each other? How might the conversation go? How important is the way we relate to each other’s power and fearlessness, as we form our next collective dream together?

 

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