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Fear: the Most Destructive Force in Life

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by balto, Jan 26, 2014.

  1. balto

    balto Beloved Grand Eagle

    The article below had contribute greatly to my fight against tms/msb. Just want to share it here and hope it will do the same for some of us here.
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    Fear: the Most Destructive Force in Life
    by sonya green

    Fear has many faces and most of those faces are in disguise. Fear can be so deceptive that we rarely recognize or define it, and therefore fail to challenge it when it sneaks up upon us in such an insidious way that it can paralyse, erode, control and ultimately destroy us. Fear is the most lethal weapon and the most toxic poison known to man. Fear is highly contagious and self destructive. Fear can be spread by word, suggestion, imagery, innuendo or intimidation.

    Fear is a chameleon and will most often show up as something completely different which makes it very difficult to recognize or unmask. Almost all destructive behavioural and emotional responses can be tracked back to fear when we peel away the layers of our feelings and actions. Fear is the core issue behind violence, jealousy, bigotry, anger, depression, greed, hatred, lies, insecurity or obsessive worry, just to name a few.

    When fear is appropriate it is a vital, effective life saving response which is critical to self preservation. Staying alive and protecting ourselves from harm is our most primal and instinctual priority. Appropriate fear, will prevent and protect us from danger; it will instantly ignite super alertness and superhuman strength. This is commonly referred to as the fight or flight response. Most of us will have experienced this super state of reaction if we have been involved in a potential car accident. In something like a nanosecond we are capable of processing an extraordinary amount of information and physically manoeuvre the car to avoid the collision.

    Appropriate fear is also an effective decision making factor. Most, if not all, of our choices are based on predicting pleasure or pain. We are predominately motivated by pleasure and pain, that is, gaining pleasure or avoiding pain. We all like to kid ourselves that we operate from intellect, and that we make decisions by using knowledge, logic and experience. If we just scratch the surface a little we will almost always find that our motivations are emotionally based. Pleasure is easy to comprehend; we choose and maintain our careers, relationships, homes, hobbies and possessions because they please us. Choices of pleasure may encompass comfort, self esteem, love, respect, acceptance, approval, security, safety and prosperity.

    Decisions based on avoiding pain may include any or all of the above, but from the flip side. Avoiding pain is extremely motivating and many of our decisions and reactions have a fear base. Pain avoidance is what fear is. Fear of physical or emotional harm, poverty, abandonment, violence, humiliation, loneliness, disapproval, disease and ultimately - death.

    It is vitally important to discern what appropriate and inappropriate fear is, as appropriate fear can and will protect us, and inappropriate fear can destroy us. Most of the time we don't recognize it at all, so, it's impossible to name it, let alone challenge it.

    The human condition has a huge emotional range and can appear quite fluid in its ability to change; we can be carried away or bounced around in a little cesspool of negative influences one minute, and then find ourselves lifted up and flying high the next . Emotions can be quite unpredictable, indefinable and often uncontrollable, and yet emotions can dominate, create or destroy us. Some people believe hate is the base emotion and love is the highest. Indifference is often considered to be the opposite of love, but it is my belief that both hate and indifference are by products of fear.

    The ultimate fear must be fear of death; being inevitable, we really should make peace with this and find it within ourselves to accept it. When we place fear in the realm of death, then we must place love in the realm of life.

    We are living anywhere between these polarities, and might view life as rhythms, vibrations and frequencies between polarities. We understand night and day, light and dark, coarse and fine, heavy and light, negative and positive, hate and love, thick and light and good and evil. When we consider all of life is energy, then we can place ourselves within the frequencies of these polarities.

    When fear is positioned at the darkest side of the polarity, we can include all of fears associates; hate greed, jealousy, anger, violence and poverty etc. The `dark side' is also represented by death, decay, destruction, war, evil and disease. Negative frequencies are coarse, slow or stagnant, heavy, thick, lethargic, black and isolated. The dark side is asleep, lifeless and baron. Likewise, love represents all that is light, alive, creative, healing, joyful, energizing and fertile.

    As energetic bodies, within an energetic realm, we synchronize with similar energies. This is really huge, and may be hard to get your head around, but it's also very simple. Thoughts and emotions are energies, which align themselves with compatible energies.

    The greatest minds, all religions, the sages and prophets and philosophers and Bob Dylan and John Lennon and every other person who ever had a quality thought, all said this:

    LOVE IS THE ANSWER.

    Love is light, Love is God, Love is the creative force, Love is freedom - because love aligns us with all that light represents. To be healthy, happy, creative, secure, energized, serene and loved requires saying in the light. Staying in the light obviously also means staying out of fear.

    I have already explained appropriate fear, but I now wish to put that aside and expose inappropriate fear for what it really is. To me, fear is Satan; an evil, destructive, paralysing force. I would suspect that every atrocity ever carried out was done so, on the motivation of fear. What motivates violence, wars, murders and suicides or evil, anger, hatred or prejudices? Peel away the layers again, and you will keep coming back to the same core - fear.

    Fear is imagination predicting the worst possible outcome. When the imagination is engaged in repetition and emotion, it becomes a belief. Our beliefs determine our actions and as the old saying goes, what you conceive and believe, you will achieve. For right or wrong, good or bad, this is the creative force within us all.

    We may feel sad and helpless when we look at the world, and many of the events taking place around us. We can become overwhelmed, to the point of depression, some feel rage and want to fight, and others feel paralysed and implode. There is so much injustice, poverty, waste, pollution and destruction. There are social and environmental issues and greedy, incompetent and spineless governments. Even when we bring ourselves away from the world stage, and just focus on our own little realities, we still find so much to analyse, consider, protect and fight for. Sure, we worry about aging, our health, finances, families and jobs. We worry about the quality and quantity of our food, pollution of our rivers and air, crime and the decline of communities. We argue that an intelligent and responsible person needs to be concerned about such things, and I agree; apathy and indifference or prancing around like Pollyanna in her "happy place" won't make the world a better place.

    There are problems, big and important problems, and those problems do need solutions. Problems are solved by intelligent application of ideas and actions, not by obsessive worry, and not by imagined fears. Herein lies the crux of the issue:

    Worry and fear are impotent they serve no purpose, other than to use up creative intelligence, and destroy creative energies or attract destructive energies.

    All problems have two possible applications and they are: Fix it or accept it.

    1. Find a solution to change, improve or eliminate the problem.
    2. Or accept that, what is - is.

    That is F.F F. Find it, Fix it or Forget it.

    The third and most popular application seems to be, `Worry about it until it disappears' and this does not and will never work.

    Worry, by the way, is fear's little brother, the same genetic code if you like. Fear is big and powerful and jumps around like a trampolinist in our solar plexus, whereas worry is a silent and sneaky, tenacious little character, that you will hardly notice until the damage is done.

    Symbology

    In previous chapters, I have symbolized fear and worry, by giving them identities, so, I will just bring them back now for another look. They are the Chattering Monkey, the Barking Dog and the Witch.

    The chattering monkey symbolized the constant dialogue which goes on and on in our heads, when we are obsessively worrying. He engages us in a prolonged and exaggerated drama and reinforces our victim status. The chattering monkey, as a symbol for fear, demonstrates how we take a reasonably small fear, compare it to everything that ever happened before, and clump it all together and exaggerate it. Words like, nobody, everyone, always, never and forever, have this one problem sweeping across your past, present and future and gathering everyone and everything that ever hurt or offended us. The chattering monkey is a master at making big out of little.

    The barking dog, I have now decided, is a toothless, barking dog. Dogs are trained to bark, they are hardly ever trained to bite. Barking dogs will scare you away or stop you in your tracks by the implication that they may bite. We don't even need to see the dog, it could be a miniature poodle for all we know, but if it barks we will give it power and control, and accept that we must back away. Symbolically, the barking dog is the reason we don't do things that we do want to do or the reason we do things which we don't want to do. Peer pressure can be a barking dog, shyness or insecurity, fear of being rejected or abandoned, are all barking dog fears.

    The witch is a complete fabrication, she never existed at all. For some unknown reason, when we are insecure, scared or threatened in any way, be that real or imagined, we justify our fear by inventing a greater threat than the one at hand. I guess we feel humiliated, small, afraid, powerless and weak for not being able to conquer our fear or problem, so we somehow excuse, justify or forgive ourselves, by inventing a greater threat. The problem with the witch is that we convince ourselves and others, that she exists, and we actively involve ourselves in focusing all of our energies in dealing with her, just burning ourselves out and sabotaging our lives. Symbolically, jealousy can be a witch, imagining your partner is cheating on you when there is absolutely no reason other than your own insecurity, is how a relationship can be destroyed by a witch. Hearing a noise outside your window at night can also be a witch, as you freeze with fear and convince yourself it is a psycho rapist. Some people convince themselves that entire races of people, people they have never even met, are all criminals or terrorists - that's a lot of witches!

    The secret to controlling fear is in first exposing it for what it is. Too often, we focus on other people or the events themselves or else we convert fear into other emotions like self righteousness, anger, insecurity, greed or any number of deceptive responses.

    If you are feeling despondent, indifferent, isolated, fatigued, depressed or any emotion that is dark, you need to name it and then claim it. You will be amazed at how many emotions mask fear, but once you can see it, you can begin to challenge or dismantle it.

    The reason I have bought in the chattering monkey, the barking dog and the witch is to save you from hours of verbal ping pong. Long drawn out analytical dialogue will drive you crazy, and is really a little self indulgent and mostly unproductive. Imagined fears and exaggerated fears need to be stopped and dismissed, as soon as they are exposed. The subconscious mind grabs an image and all of the interpretation that that image represents. When you catch a fear you name it, you then ask yourself, is this fear real or is it a monkey, dog or a witch? By creating a habit of applying these images to fears, the mind will soon learn to challenge and stop the interplay or the indulgence.

    White Light

    White light is the minds symbol of all things great and creative. Light, is the source of life, it creates life and maintains life. White light is a symbolic interpretation of God and love. It represents purity and healing. It is viewed as the highest and finest vibration or frequency. Imagining white light within us, radiating out from us, and being connected to us, will instruct the mind to align us with love, life, healing and creation. By being still and visualizing white light, we are able to activate our own emotions to generate love and lightness. This again gets back to, what we think and feel, attracts us to what is compatible or similar.

    The same is true for fear; consciously or unconsciously indulging in fearful thoughts and emotions will also align us with similar energies. Repetitious fear creates a negative belief system, and attracts that type of behaviour and those compatible energies.

    It could be so simple to master this game of life, so easy to view life as a wonderful adventure, filled with extraordinary beauty and possibilities. There is so much good, infinite love, abundance and joy, if we choose to connect into it. Love and happiness are not just random acts or accidents which come along, sweep us up and then toss us out. Love and happiness are self generated and contagious; they align to everything within a similar frequency and will expand and grow.

    I am talking here about making conscious decisions, to create and maintain thoughts and emotions, which are creative in nature. And no, it's not always easy, and no, you won't be able to control all things, all of the time. But, consider this, if you went back over your life and took an inventory of every worry and fear you ever had, and then tossed out every monkey, dog and witch, then, how many fears would be left? And if you dissected all the real fears, and noted the outcomes, how many were as bad as you imagined at the time? If you listed the really bad outcomes; the things which almost destroyed you and or dramatically changed you, then you might also wonder what of these events shaped the person you are today. The big question here of course, is that, if everything that went before made you who your are today, then how many regrets will you carry?

    You might find as much as eighty percent of your life has been wasted on imagined dangers, and if this is so, then, imagine this, what if you had that eighty percent back again? What would you be capable of creating, being, experiencing or feeling if you used your useless worry and imagined fear energies, in creating and choosing thoughts, emotions and actions, what could life be?

    It must be obvious that we do choose our thoughts, we can change them by will or we can allow them to rattle around in our heads unsupervised and out of control. It is also obvious that our emotions are reactions to those thoughts. How we react or respond is also a choice. We may be anywhere between fear and love at any given time - The choice is ours.

    There is a little story about Buddha which goes like this:

    Buddha was famous for being able to maintain his serenity and it was said, that he could not be provoked. One man, decided that this could not be true, and so set out to prove that he could provoke Buddha. Day after day, he teased and taunted and tried to provoke Buddha to become angry or at least annoyed.

    When Buddha failed to respond, he finally said to Buddha, "How can it be that you have not become angry or annoyed with me?"

    Buddha replied "If someone offered you a gift, and you chose to not accept that gift, who would the gift belong to?"

    Well, said the man, the gift would remain the property of the giver.

    Exactly, said Buddha.

    Sonya Green
     
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  2. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Balto, thank you so very much for posting this. I'm going to print this out!
     
  3. Lily Rose

    Lily Rose Beloved Grand Eagle

    Balto .. before I start, I wish to clarify that I know you did not write this article and that you are sharing it with us. Thank you for that. It was a very thought-provoking read.
    ---

    What motivates violence, wars, murders and suicides or evil, anger, hatred or prejudices?
    The `dark side' is also represented by death, decay, destruction, war, evil and disease.
    Negative frequencies are coarse, slow or stagnant, heavy, thick, lethargic, black and isolated.
    We understand night and day, light and dark, coarse and fine, heavy and light, negative and positive, hate and love, thick and light and good and evil.
    There are social and environmental issues and greedy, incompetent and spineless governments.
    The barking dog.
    The witch.


    There is much about this article that has Truth, but woven throughout lay many 'traps' and, to pull from a Buddha quote, "poison arrows". It speaks briefly of appropriate fear, but then the article seems to move into creating fear of fear. Meaning: making us afraid of Fear.

    Suicide is lumped into the list, yet if we are so afraid of death, this is out of place. Certainly, it can be argued that fear of pain outweighs fear of death. In reality, suicide is far more complex. At the core, suicide is not based on fear of pain, it is when pain has literally overwhelmed the senses. To clarify -- It is not fear OF pain, it IS pain. Suicide is when the ability to cope has been been outweighed by the pain itself.

    Night and day, light and dark, coarse and fine, thick and light .... while these are opposites, they are not negative opposites. They are merely opposite ends of a spectrum. Without night, we would never see the stars that glitter so beautifully in the sky. A thick trunk of a tree and the sparkle of dew in the sunlight. And so forth.

    Death is a natural part of life, but we fear it ... and continue to fear it as it is lumped into the 'evil-dark side'. This article contains references to Satan, and by inference, God. If we believe so much in God, why ... why do we fear death? Death merely means we are returning Home. Death is not evil, nor is it unnatural.

    More poison arrows: the reference to spineless governments. Within the cloak of addressing our fears, words are used to incite. Again, subtly directing our emotions just in the reading.

    Barking dogs? Really? Yes, monkeys chatter, but dogs ... they bark for many reasons. To say we should fear a barking dog is, again, to insert the thought that all barking dogs are dangerous. In lays groundwork for new fears.

    And yes, I must 'go there' ... The Witch. In the Wizard of Oz (my all time favorite childhood movie), Glenda is the Good Witch. Granted, the dress distracts us into thinking Fairy Godmother ... or maybe that was just me ^_^

    The word Witchcraft actually means the craft of the wise. It is about being in tune with nature and all things natural.

    When a benign word is used to describe something undesirable, soon we associate the word only with the undesirable. It becomes a prejudice. An example might be the word Catholic ... the scandals that have torn apart this institution have overwhelmed the other side ... the good side.

    Even the word Satanism has been categorized as something evil, yet they are actually atheists. It is the Luciferians who worship 'the devil'.

    Words have power, and must be used with care. The media plays on our fears, and re-defines words, slanting everything into something dramatic.

    Even the word FEAR seems negative. It is just a word. Sometimes our fear saves our lives, sometimes it multiplies and rules our lives.

    Fear is like food and stress .... too much has undesirable consequences. But just enough ... well, we need it for survival. It is one of our tools. Pain, also, is one of our tools. It tells us when something is wrong, whether structurally, or emotionally.

    It is how we deal with it that matters.

    Do not fear the fear.

    with grace and gratitude,
    ^_^
     
  4. North Star

    North Star Beloved Grand Eagle

    Lily Rose, Wow! What insightful words you speak…like usual. Your words will linger with me, no doubt, as I re-read the article.
     
  5. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Thanks much, Balto. Wonderful article on fear.
     
  6. balto

    balto Beloved Grand Eagle

    You are a great writer Lily. And you are right I'm not the author of the above article. I flunk every English class I ever took, no way I can write like that.

    I understand what you wrote, but I just don't like fear. I want to live life as fearless as I can. To me it is the most destructive and useless emotion or feeling for a mind body syndrome sufferer. Being able to get rid of FEAR is what save me from tms/anxiety.
     
    Ewok2 likes this.
  7. Lily Rose

    Lily Rose Beloved Grand Eagle

    I do not much care for fear either. It floods my body with chemicals that cause nausea, and it triggers old thought patterns. My life has been dominated by fear. But I do not wish to add another layer of fear ... the fear of fear. There is an appropriate time for fear, when we truly need our senses heightened. That big-rig truck that swerves over into my lane while taking a curve on the freeway, that is when I need those senses activated.

    But fear for the sake of fear ... fear because the house creaks, or a shadow out of the corner of my eye, or the large drain going under the sidewalk in town (yes, I fear large, dark, watery places) ... these fears do not serve me. I seek to become unafraid of those fears, and if I can begin to unravel them, the fears themselves start to soften.

    I understand the passion of the author. I understand the intent. Most will not even notice the patterns being reinforced, the inherent prejudices. This is why I say words have power. All of us here, on this site, we are seeking outside the box, breaking down the accepted way of 'how things have always been done'.

    As for flunking every English class .... don't you know, schools are hostile towards geniuses, as per Ralph Waldo Emerson. I sailed through schools because I learned the patterns of the system, and conformed accordingly. My grades did not reflect my intelligence, it only reflected my ability to do what was expected of me. Real intelligence is just as often found outside the system.

    You are here, Balto ... that means you are not only exceptionally intelligent, but extremely open minded.

    with grace and gratitude,
    ^_^
     
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  8. Forest

    Forest Beloved Grand Eagle

    I haven't yet had a chance to read this thread, but am very much looking forward to it. In the meantime, I thought I would link up another thread on the topic of fear with a very short but beautiful post by @Mermaid. Here's the thread: Conquering Fear.
     
  9. Lily Rose

    Lily Rose Beloved Grand Eagle

    Thank you for that link. Her story is beautiful and inspiring!

    with grace and gratitude,
    ^_^
     
    Forest likes this.
  10. Becca

    Becca Well known member

    What a thought-provoking article (and responses)! Thanks for posting, Balto. I am curious: were there particular passages you found especially helpful? Personally, I loved this:
    This highlighted for me how fear and belief are truly intertwined. Perhaps this is how fear gets so much of its power: by infiltrating our beliefs about ourselves, our symptoms, our relationships, our future, etc.

    Lily Rose, I absolutely agree with this. The way I see it, fear has to be applied to something. It can't really exist on its own. Think about it: we don't just "fear" - we fear a situation, an outcome, a person, etc. So the power doesn't lie in fear itself: it lies in how much we allow fear to impact our lives (and perhaps influenced by belief as well).

    Sometimes, letting fear (of death or injury, for instance) take over saves our lives, as Lily - and the article - pointed out. But often, as we all know here, fear (of pain, of immobility, of never getting back the life we want) is, as Balto says, destructive. But despite this, I don't think fear is useless. It has a purpose, just as sadness or anger has a purpose: it serves as a signal about our emotional state regarding/in response to a situation. Of course, fear can (and does) become so overwhelming that it becomes destructive. But that in itself is a sign: fear is not productive in that situation. On the other hand, feeling fear in a situation that is dangerous/harmful (imminently or currently) is productive. So the way I see it, it's not so much about getting rid of fear altogether; it's more about removing fear from those areas that don't benefit (or rather, are hurt) from it.
     
    Lily Rose likes this.
  11. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Maybe we should look upon fear as a friend. Like maybe consider it our Feary Godmother or Guardian Angel.

    No, I haven't been hitting the bottle. But I might pour a glass of red wine tonight as it starts getting down to 20 below zero here.
    The house is comfortable but as I watch an old movie tonight I have a throw blanket handy.
    Few things are as comfy as watching tv while wrapped in a blanket.

    Say warm, everyone. And I've found it impossible to be fearful while watching a good movie. Even pain can be forgotten
    while distracted with a good movie.
     
  12. Eric "Herbie" Watson

    Eric "Herbie" Watson Beloved Grand Eagle

    Yes fear is very contagious and it can be conditioned in just a second to your mindbody. I really would like for everyone to be able to catch fear in its tracks through the TV or the words of a loved one ya know. Balto, that's how slick it can be and then when you feel that emotion of fear cause your niece said she heard something weird on TV or the net, then often we agree with it unconsciously by default -- not even thinking twice do I need to check these sources and make my own decisions.

    Fear is thrown at us in so many ways its hard to keep up with all the thoughts and choices. We are to learn to defeat this tyrant and eventually know the sweet emotion of love is more powerful with anything we want to work with. I know fear isn't love but I know love is behind fear waiting on you to make the right choices to find it. We have to have these tools that you often mention Balto in order to defeat fear in an allotted amount of time, thanks

    Good fear as I like to call it will keep you safe, its a built in emotion -- the reason for the default. I believe when we get that feeling in heated arguments and seeing terrible images then we put the emotion of faith with that emotion we often call anger. Then anger eventually develops this negative fear that can paralyze you and often when you have just been mistreating yourself and getting angry at yourself well you just give more power to the emotion of fear and soon we wonder why were fearing so much or feeling nervous.

    So true, we are always doing the pleasure or pain principle and often what causes some pleasure ( cigarettes )
    Has become some of our worst habits. So we know we need to stop, pain, but I love to smoke, pleasure. If we can turn this around and get folks to relate pain to cigarette smoke. Well its just a model of change and most defiantly will help folks change their minds when they really start to learn this principle. (Pain avoidance is what fear is.) Love it

    I have a list from the Abraham-hicks books.

    [​IMG]
    See number 8 as neutral. Well often we will try to go from feeling down to super happy right. Its just to much a jump on the scale but if we go from like #8 to # 7 then number 6 and so up the scale in this order as in some exposure therapies we can eventually get to where were going.
    This way folks wont have to think its so hard to change anymore ya know. Instead of going from 8 to 1. You take your time and move up the scale slowly To get to your conditioned happy state. Look at number 22 - fear and number 1 - joy.
    This is called the emotional guidance scale. http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/threads/eft-and-your-emotional-guidance-scale.3518/
    It can really explain why it takes time to recondition to these emotions we have to experience on a daily basis and how to eventually be healed of them.

    Love this saying -- When we place fear in the realm of death, then we must place love in the realm of life.




    True. LOVE IS THE ANSWER.

    The very reason we need to learn how to control our fears through emotions of love but till you become reconditioned it seems impossible, I'm glad your shining a light in the dark Balto. Thanks

    The monkey, the dog and the witch. Its a complete manifesto. Awesome.

    I practice the white light visualizations all the time. Very good way to soothe and get back more control over your anxieties.

    The law of attraction in motion.

    Love and happiness are a choice, love it.

    When we consciously make a choice not to fear we begin to heal at that very moment -- its when we slip back into this habit of fear that we begin to get sick again. We have to complete our studies and learnings to effect a cure.

    We can always get better.

    I will accept to leave the gift of fear with the giver. Thanks Balto. A very bright lesson for me today. Come on fear, I got this
     
    Becca likes this.
  13. Joey2276

    Joey2276 Peer Supporter

    From legendary boxing trainer Cus D'amato; I find his insights helpful as for many of us seeing fear as an enemy can make it worse; rather, one can work with it as a sort of energy we can transform. His words here are meant for boxing, not TMS, I still thought it worth sharing though.

    Cus D’Amato on Fear

    [​IMG]
    Cus D'Amato. Portrait

    Cus D’Amato [1908-1985] was a man of great integrity, knowledge and heart. Most famous as being the manager and trainer of champions Floyd Patterson and Mike Tyson, many martial artists outside of boxing would come to learn about him through his brilliant insights on fear and the psychology of fighting.

    “Boxing is a sport of self-control. You must understand Fear so you can manipulate it. Fear is like fire. You can make it work for you: it can warm you in the winter, cook your food when you’re hungry, give you light when you are in the dark, and produce energy. Let it go out of control and it can hurt you, even kill you….Fear is a friend of exceptional people.” [Fire 50]

    On Recognizing Fear

    “Fear is the greatest obstacle to learning in any area, but particularly in boxing. For example, boxing is something you learn through repetition. You do it over and over and suddenly you’ve got it. …However, in the course of trying to learn, if you get hit and get hurt, this makes you cautious, and when you’re cautious you can’t repeat it, and when you can’t repeat it, it’s going to delay the learning process…When they…come up to the gym and say I want to be a fighter, the first thing I’d do was talk to them about fear…I would always use…the same example of the deer crossing an open field and upon approaching the clearing suddenly instinct tells him danger is there, and nature begins the survival process, which involves the body releasing adrenalin into the bloodstream, causing the heart to beat faster and enabling the deer to perform extraordinarily feats of agility and strength…It enables the deer to get out of range of the danger, helps him escape to the safety of the forest across the clearing…an example in which fear is your friend.
    The thing a kid in the street fears the most is to be called yellow or chicken, and sometimes a kid will do the most stupid, wild, crazy things just to hide how scared he is. I often tell them that while fear is such an obnoxious thing, an embarrassing thing…nevertheless it is your friend, because anytime anyone saves your life perhaps a dozen times a day, no matter what how obnoxious he is, you’ve got to look upon him as a friend, and this is what fear is…Since nature gave us fear in order to help us survive, we cannot look upon it as an enemy. Just think how many times a day a person would die if he had no fear. He’d walk in front of cars, he’d die a dozen times a day. Fear is a protective mechanism….By talking to the fighters about fear I cut the learning time maybe as much as half, sometimes more, depending on the individual.” [Heller, 60]

    The Next Thing…

    [​IMG]“The next thing I do, I get them in excellent condition….Knowing how the mind is and the tricks it plays on a person and how an individual will always look to avoid a confrontation with something that is intimidating, I remove all possible excuses they’re going to have before they get in there. By getting them in excellent condition, they can’t say when they get tired that they’re not in shape. When they’re in excellent shape I put them into the ring to box for the first time, usually with an experience fighter who won’t take advantage of them. When the novice throws punches and nothing happens, and his opponent keeps coming at him…the new fighter becomes panicky. When he gets panicky he wants to quit, but he can’t quit because his whole psychology from the time he’s first been in the streets is to condemn a person who’s yellow. So what does he do? He gets tired. This is what happens to fighters in the ring. They get tired. This is what happens to fighters in the ring. They get tired, because they’re getting afraid….Now that he gets tired, people can’t call him yellow. He’s just too “tired” to go on. But let that same fighter strike back wildly with a visible effect on the opponent and suddenly that tired, exhausted guy becomes a tiger….It’s a psychological fatigue, that’s all it is. But people in boxing don’t understand that.” …[Heller, 61]

    “… However, I should add that at no time does fear disappear. It’s just as bad in the hundredth fight as it was in the first, except by the time he reaches a hundred fights or long before that he’s developed enough discipline where he can learn to live with it, which is the object, to learn to live with it…”

    “Every fighter that ever lived had fear. A boy comes to me and tells me that he’s not afraid, if I believed him I’d say he’s a liar or there’s something wrong with him. I’d send him to a doctor to find out what the hell’s the matter with him, because this is not a normal reaction. The fighter that’s gone into the ring and hasn’t experienced fear is either a liar or a psychopath…” [Heller, 67]

    The Hero and the Coward
    “I tell my kids, what is the difference between a hero and a coward? What is the difference between being yellow and being brave? No difference. Only what you do. They both feel the same. They both fear dying and getting hurt. The man who is yellow refuses to face up to what he’s got to face. The hero is more disciplined and he fights those feelings off and he does what he has to do. But they both feel the same, the hero and the coward. People who watch you judge you on what you do, not how you feel.” [Heller, 97]
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2014
    Eric "Herbie" Watson likes this.
  14. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    Despite any fear, of any kind, anyone who faces their TMS pain and fights back is a hero.

    The bravest of the brave are those who confront their inner repressed emotions.
    And don't let anyone judge you on your progress, not even yourself.
     
    Joey2276 likes this.
  15. Eric "Herbie" Watson

    Eric "Herbie" Watson Beloved Grand Eagle

    This is a great post Joey2276, I love how Cus D'Amato gets his fighters into shape. When they are tired he knows it's an excuse and he teaches them how its mental fear thus creating the tiredness. This is a classic teaching by one of the all time greatest teachers in boxing. Thank you so much for contributing this powerful excerpt.
    Bless you
     
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