Fear comes up when we have made a decision to expand our lives by focusing on a challenging goal. It will always come up when we are facing the unknown and we are at the boundary line between the known and the unknown.. Anyone who is growing must learn to handle fear.
Fear also arises when we are facing some negative circumstances in our lives and really don’t know how to handle it. Essentially this means once again facing the unknown.
Falling into Fundamental Darkness
When we fall into fear, we have forgotten to focus on what we wan. Instead, we have bowed to what appears to be the circumstances controlling our lives. Fear is also an indicator that we have some disbelief in our Buddha nature. When we doubt our connection with the Mystic Law we have forgotten its power to overcome anything and solve any problem. It means that we are letting fundamental darkness control our lives.
When Eddie Mower was young husband he was told by the doctors that his unborn son had hydrocephalus and would be a severely mentally disabled child. He and his wife determined in front of the Gohonzon that they would not terminate the pregnancy but use their faith and practice to protect their son and make sure he had a good life. But even with that determination they felt like they were victims of this circumstance and had no idea of how to meet the needs of their son.
Eddie got guidance from a senior in faith who reminded him that countless members had overcome negative circumstances through faith in the Gohonzon. But, that he could not be half-hearted and had to decide to transform his karma. Eddie made a new determination. He was going to stop making excuses and take control of his future.
Once his son Hiro was born, the doctors discovered other neurological problems in addition to the hydrocephalas. They had many doctor visits and surgeries in the first year. Eddie and his wife steadily overcome every obstacle by going back to the Gohonzon and determining to persevere. It wasn’t easy. The end result was that Hiro hit every milestone and has become the light of their family. World Tribune
Eddie learned that where before he felt like a victim, now he knows that in front of the Gohonzon he decides what the outcome will be. He also learned that when a dire situation occurs it is possible to turn great evil into great good through the power of the Mystic Law.
Nichiren says that the important thing is to have no fear, regardless of what happens. (Hope-filled teachings 278-279
How you can overcome fear
First, you have to recognize that you are feeling fearful. When you recognize that remind yourself that you are growing and are facing the unknown and that fear is normal and is just letting you know that you are at that boundary. If you are facing evil, remind yourself that evil is a portent of great good, if you use the power of the Gohonzon.
Second, go to the Gohonzon and determine the outcome of your situation, what you want the resolution to be. In front of the Gohonzon you will be able to see devilish functions for what they are, challenge them head-on and use them to transform your karma. This means to transform any disbelief in your Buddha nature, your connection with infinite mind, that you are one with Myoho-renge-kyo, and with this connection can resolve any problem. The power of the Mystic Law to “change poison into medicine” is absolute. As Ikeda says, “Either we advance or we retreat, there is no middle ground. Either we cringe in fear and surrender to the negativity in our own or others lives, or we challenge this negativity and deepen our conviction in faith.”
As Daisaku Ikeda says, “Prayer is the courage to persevere. It is the struggle to overcome our own weakness and lack of confidence in ourselves. It is the act of impressing in the very depths of our being the conviction that we can change the situation without fail. Prayer is the way to destroy all fear. It is the way to banish sorrow, the way to light a torch of hope.” 12/3/2004 WT, p. 8
Third: Take any action you can to handle the situation. Taking action reduces fear. As Ikeda says “Bravely overcoming one small fear gives you the courage to take on the next.” FIA 105 As President Toda said, “ No matter what happens, be fearless! Never retreat even a single step.” Teachings for Victory, p. 8 And as Nichiren said: “Not to advance is to retreat.” FIA, p. 105
Fourth: For support, unite with fellow members in the community of practitioners. Listen to experiences to remind yourself that the Mystic Law can handle anything. Then you won’t allow yourself to be controlled by your circumstances.
Fifth: Study. Advance with faith rooted in the oneness of mentor and disciple. Looking at how your mentor handles difficult obstacles in The Human Revolution and what he does to handle fear. Then apply it in your own life.
We discussed what fear is, that you are moving out of the known into the unknown. That when we fall into fear we have accepted that circumstances control us rather than we controlling our circumstances through the power of the Mystic Law. We have some disbelief in our Buddha nature.
Then we looked at an experience where a father transformed the future of his disabled son through the power of the Gohonzon and learned that he determined what would happen in front of the gohonzon and he is not controlled by circumstances. His son is doing well and has met all his milestones.
Finally, we discussed the five steps to handling fear.
1. Recognize what is happening,
2. Go to the Gohonzon with determined prayer
3. Take any action you can
4. Unite with fellow practitioners for support
5. Study the writings to see how our mentor handled fear and use his example as a model.
1. Have You Fallen into Fundamental Darknesss? https://wp.me/p3V1J9-15E
2. Here’s a Method to Handle Fears that Arise While Chanting https://wp.me/p3V1J9-Sn
3. Conquer Your fears. Find courage. https://wp.me/p3V1J9-vg
Script download: Fear
Comments: Keep your comments coming. I love to hear what you think and any ideas for topics. See you in two weeks.