Written by Cameron Harman
A pandemic, quarantine, there is a lot of fear and anxiety right now in the world. How do we continue to develop spiritually and keep our inner peace? The first thing to remember is that even though things seem unstable, our perception dictates our reality. If you believe that we should be afraid or worried, that will become our reality. But if we can see things differently, then we can live in the present moment without fear. Fear is present in the mind when the ego believes it can be destroyed. The way to approach dealing with this is remembering that we are not the body, but we are a soul living in a human experience. Fear is developed over the course of many years of conditioning by the ego. As children, we don’t know what fear is until we learn it. How does this realization help us now? By letting go of fear, fear of tomorrow, fear of death, we free ourselves so that peace can come through.
Thich Nhat Hanh, a wonderful Vietnamese monk, said this in many of his books, “we are of the nature to grow old, to become ill, and to die.” As hard as this may seem, it is the truth of human existence. This is nothing to be afraid of; it actually frees the mind of fear when fully realized. When we have pain, we become fearful of what is causing the pain, staying up late at night, searching WebMD to make sure we are not dying. But if we use pain as a reminder that we will feel pain, get sick, and die, life makes more logical sense. Apply that to what we are facing now in 2020. Yes, it is a scary time. Yes, it is uncomfortable. It is also part of the human experience; we are growing and learning from the pain. This is not the first time humanity has seen dark days, and surely it will not be the last.
Another part of this understanding is trust, trusting the Universe to do as it always has. Trust can liberate us from fear if wholly believed. Letting go of what we fear to the Universe opens us up for positivity and calm. As humans, we are playing a game we have no control over. We make decisions, yes, but what the future holds is not up to us. We resist what naturally flows, and that resistance is what is keeping us from truly being free. Let the world do what it always has done and just be a passenger looking out the window.
“Be here now,” as the phrase goes. Since the ’70s, people have been saying this phrase to themselves and to each other. Our general human circumstances haven’t changed since then, so the saying stands. All the way back to ancient times of the East when the Gurus, Zen masters, and Yogis were saying it, for truly, the only moment we have is this one right now, moment to moment. The story of humanity is far from over. We still have much to learn. I believe in us. Because you are reading this, you are a sign of hope, the seeker looking for change—the seeker wanting to quiet their mind and open their heart. Be who you want the world to be, give compassion when it’s needed. Lift others when they are down because we all need it sometimes. The world is a reflection of you because of the mind. Change sometimes requires someone to take the first step. Be brave enough to be kind in the face of danger, be kind enough to heal a broken heart when yours is in pieces.
No matter what the Universe has in store for us, try to remember to be in the moment. Go for a walk, or call a friend and have a good laugh. Now is the time to do the inner work; it is available anytime you are ready. Meditation can teach you to still your ever rampant thoughts. Learning to be compassionate can teach us how to cool the flames of anger. The first step is to just take the step, make a choice, and have faith in the Universe to guide you. The sun still shines bright on earth, and humans have yet to see their brightest day.
About the author: My name is Cameron Harman. I served in the US Army for eight years. From 2011 to 2012, I went to Afghanistan. After my service, I had PTSD and suffered from it for many years. When my time in the military was done, I started meditating and learning about spirituality. My life changed, and the pain began to fade. I started a podcast called Hermit_Radio to share what I had learned about healing the mind and living from the heart.
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