Lighting up the Blog-o-sphere one flicker at a time, 4/19/12

Welcome to my weekly adventure to “Occupy the Blog-o-Sphere” each Thursday. I offer this hopefully uplifting picture and message to brighten your day and bring something buoyant into your life. As you move through your day with a renewed outlook, may you pass it along.

THE DIGNITY OF FEARLESSNESS

It’s not an understatement to say that fear runs rampant in our world. We feel it everywhere: globally, nationally, in our communities, and even in our homes. The news highlights all the dangers lurking around all the corners–real, impending, and imagined. And news is available when and where we are, on multiple channels and in every conceivable way (television, print, radio, Internet, email, cell phone and e-reader apps). Is it any wonder that commercials placed within news programs sell mainly pharmaceuticals to help us sleep, calm our digestive maladies, cure impotence, curtail incontinence, lower hypertension, and promise weight loss? We’re nervous wrecks because we have a need to “be informed”; but we’re only being informed of every possible disaster that has happened or could happen. And it’s relentless if we are conscious.

Fear breeds distrust, cynicism, prejudice, hatred, violence, and eventually apathy toward any life but our own. I can’t think of a worse way to spend our time on this planet.

The antidote for fear is love–not necessarily romantic love, but love of self, others, and life in all its glorious diversity. Love means being courageous enough to open your heart to the possibilities around the corner. Fearlessness frees us from hiding from life; instead we embrace life with all it’s ups and downs and rounds and rounds.  Make no mistake, letting go of fear the ultimate act of bravery. It is also the ultimate act of living fully for as long as you are graced with the gift of life.

Maybe this child is too young to know fear, but surely not too young to know the pain of her cancer. And yet the pure joy on her face from this simple daffodil expresses to me the heart of a truly brave soul.

Imagine the fearlessness it took for women to vote in the first "democratically" held elections in Iraq. Look in her eyes. I see more than courage; I see pride, determination, and dignity. She let go of her fear and claimed her personhood.

“There is more to fearlessness than merely having overcome fear. Beyond that, when we speak of fearlessness, we are describing a positive state of being full of delight and cheerfulness, with sparkling eyes and good posture. This state of being is not dependent on any external circumstances. It is individual dignity. This joy and unconditional healthiness is the joy, the basic virtue, that comes from being what we are, right now.”

Buddhist Teacher and Monk, Chögyam Trungpa, from his book Smile at Fear: Awakening the True Heart of Bravery

Click on this link to find out more about joining this cyber-movement to lighten up and brighten up our world so you can decide if you want to be part of it.




~ by Lorna's Voice on April 19, 2012.

33 Responses to “Lighting up the Blog-o-sphere one flicker at a time, 4/19/12”

  1. Yes, me too, Al. Me too. 🙂

  2. Just got to this today, Lorna. Very nicely put and words to live by. As I look back on my life I realize how often I let fear paralyze me and limit my accomplishments. I’m doing somewhat better with that now.

  3. While I don’t like to think in terms of conspiracies, drama sells. The “news” has become about what is used to fill in the empty spots between commercials, so editorial boards and product producers need drivel that sells. What sells better to most of the masses than fear and/or drama? I hear “Promo” ads for the news that sound something like this: “You could be feeding your children something that is slowly killing them. Tune into The Nightly News at 11:00 for the exclusive story.” So we wait with our hungry children until 11:00 to view a 2:00 minute segment about some inconclusive study that says some children might be allergic to dairy, so have them tested. By that time, everyone in raiding the refrigerator for ice cream, cheese, or whatever comfort food one can find.

    At least with a Bengal, you know where you stand (or crawl, or lie) without having to wait… 😉

    Love back, L

  4. Lorna, how come I missed this? In future I shall set the alarm to go off on a Thursday.

    A most astute observation of yours. I know too little about Americans/America (other than generalisations to which there seem many an exception) to comment on the ‘mental’ health of as huge a nation as yours.

    Your “fear(lessness)” reminded me of a brief essay I once wrote on the difference between fear and anxiety (this was not on English turf) and I defined ‘fear’ as something to be felt with good reason (say, a hungry tiger is on your heel) and ‘anxiety’ as irrational (say, you fear (!) a loose roof tile will fall on your head next time you set foot out of the door). Yeah, well, Lorna you know how semantics will get my juices flowing every time. Still …

    The fear you describe I’d call paranoia. Making us into quivering little children when we should conquer the world (until that roof tile drops down or we are faced with a Bengal).

    Much love,
    U

  5. 🙂

  6. Rock on, Crazy Chick, you are on a roll 🙂

  7. My pleasure 🙂

  8. This message seems to have touched a nerve. I’m both delighted and amazed. 🙂

  9. Thanks, Janice. I appreciate the vote of confidence! 🙂

  10. Thank you for your very kind words and for taking the time to comment. I hope you come back and visit regularly. 🙂

  11. Aw, thanks, Tricia. I try. 🙂

  12. I agree. Most people in America have lost that sense of “us” and only trust “I.” The consequences are haunting us now…

  13. SO glad you like it. Tune in every Thursday for another one… 🙂

  14. Thanks!

  15. Very inspiring post Lorna.

  16. The title of the Post is lovely, and so are the thoughts within it

  17. When I see my neighbour’s house on fire what makes me run over with a bucket of water isn’t love, it’s something else. Kropotkin called it ‘Mutual aid’, I call it ‘mutuality’ or the propensity for motivation via social rather than commercial and individualistic values. The commercial world depends on hunger (the food industry), disease (the medical industry), conflict (the arms industry), greed (the every-damn-thing-else industry that sells us ‘neat stuff’), and it is not above creating its own markets rather than fulfilling needs. This has alienated us from each other and left us to dwell in borderline paranoia. The commercial world, the world were everything is private property, where everything is commoditised, has forced us to forget that we are a societal animal first and foremost. If and when we can recover that sense of society on a small scale and escape the nation-state and the mega-marketplace, we will free ourselves. However, there will then be one heck of a struggle when the wealthy and powerful begin to feel the ground shift under them. They won’t give up without sending in their men with guns. You heard it here.

    M
    ____________
    Marie Marshall
    author/poet/editor
    Scotland
    http://mairibheag.com
    http://kvennarad.wordpress.com

  18. I stopped watching the new in 2008 and haven’t really missed it. You show the beautiful face of strenght in all that you do. Cheers and blessings to you, always, T

  19. Very moving site and so very positive! You know that you can bring a lot to all of us through your words, you wisdom, and much more your experience. The things that only you can bring and speak of that were part of your life’s experiences…i am with you. Go all out…love you girl!

  20. Reblogged this on AURORA MOREALIST ©2011 ~ Janis Justis, Writer and commented:
    The Dignity of Fearlessness – indeed!!! Hurrah for fearlessness, the way I roll. This rocks!

  21. Awesome! Going to reblog right now, Love the phrase “the dignity of fearlessness” – it’s so “us” lol You rockxo

  22. My goodness. Thanks so much! I think I’m speechless (and that’s rare for me). 🙂

  23. Thanks. 🙂

  24. Sometimes I think you know you’re doing the right thing when the thing you’re doing is so hard, but gratifying.

  25. How timely, Lorna. I just watched a documentary of American screenwriter Dalton Trumbo’s Hollywood blacklisting during the McCarthy Era. I gained much insight into shirking fear for what is right. Still, not always easy.

  26. Lovely Lorna. Just lovely.

  27. I smiled when you included the quote from the Buddhist teacher. Your post was far more insightful and well written than his. It isn’t often that I see a piece in which the quote is weaker than the context. This is a really wonderful Thursday post, Lorna. Thank you.

  28. Sometimes the most courageous thing a person can do is to smile in the face of adversity or to open her/his heart to a foe. We’re all in this life together, let’s act like it! 🙂

  29. It’s a matter of survival for me. I find that I even have to be careful about what I read before I go to sleep…

  30. You are very welcome. Courage comes in all shapes, sizes, and souls.

  31. Choosing the photo of the Iraqi woman with the purple ink on her index finger epitomizes fearlessness to me. Thanks for reminding me of this so early in my morning.

  32. Great post…Thanks for making the connection between those type commercials and the ‘news’ that breeds fear. I’ve taken too long of a break from watching the news. Not too proud of that but sometimes we need to rest our minds from it.

  33. A beautiful post. Here’s to being brave enough to living fearlessly.

Silence can be just what the doctor ordered. You know I'm a doctor, right?

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