Tuesday, January 19, 2010

The Clever Disguises of Fear ...

Maybe it takes one to know one, but I can sniff out a fear in a person pretty quickly. Having grown up in a realm of fear (in the guise of control and discipline), and having been in the process of being set free from fear, I suppose I'm a bit heightened to it.

And, we all deal with fear. Whether we know it or not -- whether we LET ourselves know it or not...!

Most of us sure don't like to admit when we feel fear ... or worse, that it's the background music of our lives. Perhaps it makes us too vulnerable to face it ... perhaps it seems too weak, or makes us feel victimized.

During one rather intense personal conflict, during which a friend was accusing me of having gone down the "slippery slope of heresy", I became very aware that my friend was consumed by fear ... I could see it, feel it, all but taste it, as it hung thick in the air, and contorted her face. When I mentioned that I was sensing fear, the reaction was immediate and rejecting, "This is NOT fear -- it's wisdom."

Ahhhh, I see. I didn't realize that wisdom could make a person shake, cry, and lose control ...

But clearly my observation had hit a nerve ... & my observation was seen as highly offensive.

And so, we were stuck ... resolution did not come that day, or since.

I rather like discovering that I'm manifesting fear -- I like getting it out in the open ... because that means I'm aware that I'm in need of more perfect love (& there's no lack to that Supply!) ... I'm on the verge of having a lie replaced with truth ... I'm pregnant, and about to deliver more freedom...!

Yeah, birth hurts ... won't get any arguments from me on that. But the new life that comes forth is SO worth it...!

On this very topic, comes a message from one of my favorite contemporary mystics - Richard Rohr. Likely not a stranger to most who read this blog. I just love what he shares today -- may it sink in deeply -- may it do it's expository, revelational and transformative work, in whomever can bear it ...!


Question of the Day:
Do I allow hate or mean-spiritedness to control my life?

Fear is almost always behind hate. Sometimes it looks like taking necessary control, but control freaks are usually afraid of losing something. It is almost always fear that justifies hatred, but a fear that is hardly ever recognized as such.

For fear to survive, it must look like reason, prudence, common sense, justice, or even religion. It always works. What better way to veil vengeance than to call it justice? What better way to cover greed than to call it responsible stewardship? What better way to cover arrogance than call it Biblical obedience? Only people who have moved beyond ego and controlling all outcomes, only those practiced at letting go, see fear for the impostor that it is. To be trapped inside of your small self is always to be afraid.

There is an intrinsic connection between fear, hatred and violence. Fear always needs a hiding place, and one of the best is supposed morality or truth-speaking. Then, you can hate with impunity, and even grandiosity, or validation from the Scriptures. Then you can be hateful and not feel the least guilty about it, but in fact feel morally superior.

Taken from: A Lever and a Place to Stand (CD)

Blessed are the peacemakers

Shalom, Dena


chris said...

Thanks for commenting on my blog. I've been reading through some of your posts, and I'm really enjoying them. I hope you don't mind, but I'm gonna put a link to your blog on mine. I'm looking forward to reading more in the future.

Dena said...

Well hi, Chris! I don't mind at all - I'd be honored. And I shall return the honor! I much admire your honesty, and your passion for truth ... a passion we very much share.

Dena said...

Just read through your favorite books ... we read the same authors! I adore Borg, and Walsch, Miller, and Tim and Kevin are good friends of mine (I'm determined to meet Borg and Walsch, since I'm also in Oregon, so it's obvsiously *meant* to be..!). Have you read Kevin Beck's "This book will change your world"? Free online.

For me, it all started with "The Shack" ... well, backing up, it started when we got kicked out of church ... discovered McLaren, and Lamott, and Yaconelli, and Miller ... started questioning everything, and haven't stopped...!

Nice to meet a soul-mate. I look forward to what unfolds.

chris said...

I just finished the Shack the other day; not bad! My favorite book is If Grace is True, it opened my eyes. I also like Bishop Spong, Bart D. Ehrman. I basically read anything on spirituality I can get my hands on!

Dena said...

Paul Young is a friend of ours ... met him when the book was not-yet-promoted. He came to our house for his first "book tour" ... just 50 odd (emphasis on "odd!") folks in our living room. I'll have to revisit "The Shack" -- was powerful to me 3 years ago, but MUCH has changed in that time!

Oh, I LOVE Gully & Mulholland! Did you also read their "If God is Love"? I found them serendipitously on our (uber-Christian town's) library shelf - and was frustrated that I couldn't underline! Took copious notes!

Have also enjoyed Spong (he was once on the "no go" list -- how things change!), and Bart Ehrman, "Misquoting Jesus".

SO much to read -- so little time!

I'm re-reading Borg's "Meeting Jesus AGAIN for the First Time" as a refresher for a talk I'll be sharing in Texas in a couple of weeks.