How I began to 'master fear and enable miracles’, healing myself and releasing karma of lifetimes…
In my experience, the first step in leaving fear is uncovering and learning about our own! This can take years, even decades as we often have layers of fear. For quite a few years I've held a prayer to become absolutely fearless. I visited Hemkunt, a mountaintop in the Himalayas in India with that prayer, where my teacher had shared that the ‘10th master and founder of the Sikhs’ had meditated for lifetimes prior to incarnating to serve and protect those in and around India as Guru Gobind Singh. He was a wonderful humanitarian and saint-soldier who lived in the late 1600’s/early 1700’s when there was tyrannic religious oppression there.
For almost 50 years I have gratefully immersed myself in Kundalini Yoga and meditation (Naam Simran). Possibly you have a different methodology or practice you embrace that elevates you and your capacity to handle stress, be expansive, uplifted and do your best to serve others and behave excellently largely - all good! It has been an interesting journey for me. Kundalini Yoga is referred to as the ‘yoga of awareness’. With consistent practice it can be wonderfully uplifting, healing, and enriching and at the same time regularly challenging, as we become more aware of how difficult things we’ve endured and experienced in this life have profoundly affected us. Flashing through our sub-conscious ‘radar’, all elements of trauma and unresolved issues and situations will come to the fore. Then we have an opportunity to address those through varied means and begin to heal ourselves - or not, continuing to live with our ‘diminished’ self.
I believe this particular yogic system is one of the best ‘tool kits’ available today, when embraced consistently, to help us make the wisest decisions for ourselves. It can be precious to help better manage the stresses of daily life and at the same time elevating our consciousness out of anxiety, depression and confusion! Early on in my taking up this yoga and meditation I found myself regularly feeling deeply insecure and lacking self-trust. This was a difficult time for me when I was at university in my early 20’s, as I adopted a new identity of a Sikh while training myself in art and metalsmithing. At times I chose to stop practicing, just to give myself a little bit of a ‘break’ from feeling so inadequate. That didn’t work for long, as I needed the elevated awareness and mood that the practice afforded me, despite leaving me feeling less than whole at times. Eventually, after much dedicated practice over many years and God’s grace, I’ve left those insecurities and self-doubt largely. Because my wife and I did not have children and I was physically able, I prioritized cultivating discipline with this practice which continues to this day. I’m grateful and will continue to have that gratitude as long as I’m able to practice. I find through my diligence, dedication and capacity to still do the yoga vigorously (this can work marvelously in kundalini yoga), and my prayer to clear all karma, it get’s more rewarding as time goes on.
Around the same time I began practicing yoga and meditation, I also started immersing myself in the martial arts. I had been bullied some when I was a teenager, and this training boosted my confidence in general as well as my capacity to protect myself, if necessary. On a certain level it was deeply relaxing which I found exhilarating and became deeply grateful for. On another level, it has been the most empowering thing I've ever done, outside of yoga and meditation. The most powerful element of this immersion for myself was the sparring with others, with gloves and pads. I continued ‘practice fighting’ in a few marital arts for several decades and found it to be wonderfully therapeutic. These days I barter private lessons with the owner of a very successful martial arts school - helping him slow down some and be more self-reflective, enabling wiser decision-making and he helps keep me sharp and capable - if someone is misbehaving seriously and is not so open to listening to a thoughtful brother requesting them to stop whatever they might be doing which some may not be enjoying.
I’ve come to believe that we can leave up to 70% of our fear through intense martial arts training/practice fighting. I further believe learning how to protect oneself can be a sacred endeavor, if done in a very respectful setting with an exemplary teacher and an attitude of reverence. Especially for women, it can enable a skill set and self-confidence where no one will be able to take advantage of that woman in any way! In my teaching of kundalini yoga and meditation, I regularly emphasize that women may be well served if they have the capacity to be ferocious, if necessary.
I do believe in the world we live in today, confronting injustice wherever one may see, feel or hear it, is important to make it a better place for all. Doing that as wisely as possible, so you might stay safe yourself can be prudent, unless a situation seems dire enough that you feel called to risk your own life in defense of whatever might be going on. When we intelligently and fearlessly ‘answer the call’ stepping in and helping others when ‘something is awry’ and may be ‘unsettling for you’, you may be able to bring understanding, a peaceful resolution and even help the perpetrator learn an important lesson. I believe blessings can arrive through these kinds of gestures, potentially for all parties involved, when we intervene to help restore some sense of grace and normalcy!
I was fortunate for decades to manage the food preparation at some of the larger events around the solstices which our yoga organization sponsored. This helped me begin to understand the privilege of serving others in life. (And it was at these sacred bi-annual gatherings that I first began noticing small miracles happening for me!) I continued, pre-pandemic, to oversee food preparation often wherever I found myself, including one special meal at these larger solstice events annually and monthly locally. It is natural for me to express my enthusiasm and gratitude around service to others. I also believe blessings and miracles can arrive for us when we go out of our way to serve whatever we believe is an important cause.
All of the above mentioned things, have served to help me leave substantial fear and self doubt, as well as observe small miracles happening regularly in my life. Blessings to All! 🙏