Fear and Ecstasy

I've spent many hours, days, and perhaps years of my life trying to conquer fear.  I've often said it is the source of all evil.  Greed, hate, anger, selfishness--I equated them all to fear.

I was wrong.

Fear is not evil.  Fear, love, joy...they simply are-- they exist, sitting on a shelf.  They are "empty" as a Buddhist would say, neutral until we pick them up and use them.  Like anything else, it is not fear that is the problem, it is our response that determines the outcome.  Evil is a participatory sport and requires participation.

I see my fear as it grows, 
sometimes so large that I feel lost in it's shadow,
and I tremble like a lover in ecstasy.
For I know that when my fear is gone,
I will have drawn my last breath.

Zen Presence - Ideas for Meaningful Living


  1. The poem is beautiful, Dan. And a great illustration of context. Fear only exists against the backdrop of it's opposite and grayer areas, whatever they may be...

  2. I love that, Dan!

    And isn't it exciting to figure out that you've been wrong about something? I always like it when life has surprises for us to discover... :-)

  3. Beautiful Dan,

    Anders Hasselstrøm