Vector8 Journals

Monday, October 11, 2004

How I Conquered Fear with Belief

"If I can see it, then I can do it
If I just believe it theres nothing to it"
From: "I believe I Can Fly" by R Kelly
I believe everything is based on beliefs. You cannot experience life without having a belief. Hell, if I didn't believe I was real enough to be sitting in front of a computer screen typing this, you wouldn't be reading this article.

We are all coming from different perspectives, we all have our beliefs. Some people believe so much in their truth that they believe it is the ultimate truth and try to get others to see things their way, not realising that their truth is only another belief. What is truth? Truth is what you believe it is.

I have had many beliefs, which come and go. There are a few beliefs which I have retained, that are the backbone of who I am. I will discuss these later.

I want to share with you how I used belief to conquer fear.

There was a time when I felt waves of fear and I would break into a cold sweat. There is a belief that says the fear is not personal, that you are tapping into a thought-form that humanity has created. Other beliefs tell you that the fear is not real. I have read somewhere that fear is an acronym for "False Evidence Appearing Real." That is all well and good but when you are experiencing fear, no matter how good the words of counsel sound, if the fear is real to you, it is real to you. I had also heard that "perfect love casts out fear," yet it didn't take away my fear. The words sounded like another platitude: nice words, looks good on paper, but not much else. The reason why these words didn't work for me was because I didn't believe in them. How was I going to get out of this fear?

At that point in my life I watched hundreds of hours of God-TV from a Christian perspective. I remember one teacher who inspired me called
Andrew Wommack. He wore plaid shirts and looked like a cowboy. He didn't come out with complicated stuff, just simple truths, as he saw it. Yet this man was awesome. He had such strong beliefs in God and Jesus as his personal saviour that the man worked miracles. I would wake up early to catch his early morning broadcast at 5.30 am. There was something about this man that got me. I knew I could be like him. I later realised that the only way I could be like Andrew was to have the faith he had. I was up for that challenge.

I started using passages from the scriptures to help with fear. Sometimes they did help and other times they didn't. I had heard about the power of
Psalm 91, and I decided to give it a go. A passage from Psalm 91 states:

"Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;
Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday." (Psalm 91: 5-6)
For me, the above imagery described perfectly what I was experiencing. Waking up in cold sweat was the "terror by night." Thoughts of fear I couldn't get rid of were "arrow that flieth by day." Fear of diseases and catching them were the "pestilence that walketh in darkness." And the many disasters and calamities that we are bombarded with in the media were the "destruction that wasteth at noonday." So one morning, I decided to memorise the whole of Psalm 91 and use it as a weapon against fear. I knew without a shadow of a doubt that this Psalm was the truth that was going to release me from fear.

The war against fear began. I was determined to have no other thoughts. While I was working I would think of work, or whatever needed to be done. During the times I wasn't doing anything, I repeated the words of Psalm 91 over and over again. (I had tried chanting the Hari Krishna mantra before but I didn't really believe in it so I didn't feel it was working). I believed in the words of Psalm 91. I guess I have a Christian background so I was used to the idea of God. I believed in a power the Psalm refers to as the "Almighty." I finally believed in something.

The result was immense peace. The moment I was gripped by fear, I would think of the words and the fear would disappear. It got to a point when I only had to think of the words "Psalm 91" and the fear left me. However, I found the peace only lasted a few days and the fear would return. I had been meditating for years and I had experienced a state of bliss that is beyond fear. I wanted this permanent bliss in my waking moments, not just in meditation.

The next stage in the process was to stop fighting the fear. I had come across other paradigms which teach fear is not real; only Love is real. I had read that when you surrender to Love you will not fight fear anymore. It was time to test this belief out. I let go of Psalm 91 and surrendered to Love. How? By believing in the process of course. You think I was just going to surrender without believing in this reality? What do you take me for, a moron? Because I believed there was something to surrender to, which knows no fear, it worked. It was like falling over a cliff and knowing I am falling into an invisible hand that will catch me. As R Kelly sings: "I believe I can fly."

I don't give advice but just this once I will give one. To anyone going through fear, I would say use whatever teaching you are comfortable with. But for goodness sake, believe in it like your life depended on it, otherwise there is no point. We are all very good at believing. You get a headache and you take a pill. The pill works because you have put your faith in the pill. On the other hand, you could call for someone to heal you and it will work if you believe in it. You could pray and if you believe in prayer it will work. Beliefs are real and they do work, if you believe.

I have studied the biblical Jesus and I have observed that all his miracles were based on belief, either the one he was healing or on someone else's belief. To the blind men he said : "According to your faith be it unto you." (Matthew 9: 29). To the woman who had been bleeding for years who believed that, by touching the hem of Jesus' garment she would be healed, Jesus said to her: "thy faith hath made thee whole." (Matthew 9: 22) To the Centurion who believed on behalf of his servant that Jesus only had to say the word and his servant would be healed, Jesus said: "Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee." (Matthew 8: 13) When Jesus went to his hometown and "he could there do no mighty work," it is written: "he marvelled because of their unbelief." (Mark 6: 6)

The same Jesus teaches: "What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them." (Mark 11: 24)

Which leads to an important point. I have to come clean about something. All the articles I have written in the past are not demonstrations of myself growing in spiritual stature, they are demonstrations of beliefs I have had. A particular belief creates a particular experience. The great thing about writing is that I can have a belief, test it out, and write about it. I don't have to repeat the experience; once it's over it's over. Just like a particular role in a movie or drama might require an actor to make a one-off appearance. While other roles require an actor to be in a series for as long as his is required or wishes to. This is the same way I experience life. I am simply acting different roles, trying on different beliefs, to have different experiences.

Does this mean there isn't an ultimate Truth? I believe there is. I believe that the ultimate Truth is knowing that the masks and experiences are not who I am. I believe who I am is the one wearing the masks, which I call the Dreamer. I believe the Dreamer has infinite power and gives me unlimited opportunities to experience life, without judgment. I believe that it is up to individuals to find out for themselves what the possibilities are by testing out their beliefs. I also believe that even the Dreamer is a belief, but it's the best I can do in terms of absolute Truth. If I discover a new absolute Truth, I will obviously have to modify my beliefs.

I have two core-beliefs:

I believe in the Dreamer.
I believe in Beliefs.
I am the Dreamer,