Friday, July 3, 2009

Ten Things to Not Be Afraid Of

1. Do not be afraid of The Future

It is all you have. The present is past. The past is unchangeable. The future is where everything good you will ever enjoy, everything you will ever accomplish, or learn, or see, or do is going to play out. You will spend the rest of your life in it, but in reality, you will be around for only a very small amount of the future. Much fear of the future is caused by doomsday predictions of those who know no more about the future than you do. Two current examples: global warming will destroy the earth, and we will soon run out of oil, thus ruining life as we know it. However, let us look at what might have been some of the headlines of the past:

Experts predict end of life on earth if ice continues to spread.
Whale-oil shortage dims lamps; experts say we will live in darkness.
Horse breeding fails to keep pace with population growth. Experts predict half the population will end up walking soon.
Lack of arrowheads threatens future of hunting.
Typewriter production shortfalls threaten banking and industry. Experts say businesses could fail.
Increase in home prices threatens the fiber of American society.
Shortage of rubber trees threatens tire production capacity.
Firewood supply will soon be exhausted. "Millions could freeze to death," say experts.
Shortages of paper will likely cause cutbacks in mail, say experts.
Shortage of silver threatens photographic film industry. "Families will be unable to take pictures," say experts.
Japan and Germany unlikely to ever regain industrial capacity, experts say.
Asbestos shortage threatens building safety. "Thousands will burn to death," say experts.
Copper shortage threatens to cripple growth in telephone service. Experts say, "Without wire, millions will never have service."
Ice shortage threatens food safety. "There is only so much ice on the lakes to cut and store," say experts.
Buffalo shortage will mean end of life for our people, says tribal chief.
Insufficient swords could spell defeat in next war.

These headlines are made up, but in 100 years people may be laughing at our headlines. The fact is that the future finds a way to take care of itself. The future is where you will win. It is nothing to fear.

2. Do not be afraid of Love.

It can hurt you, for sure. But do not fear it, for life without it is so bleak and desolate as to make even the worst hurt that love can bring pale by comparison. And its good times are really good.

3. Do not be afraid of Tears

They prove you have a heart.

4. Do not be afraid of Trying New Things

Trying new things is how you learned to crawl, walk, talk, eat, read, write and everything else you enjoy. If you try new things, you may fail. If you do not try, you have already failed.

5. Do not be afraid of Being Hurt

The only way to avoid it is to avoid experience, to avoid life itself. Do not miss skating for fear of a skinned knee. Do not miss the flowers for fear of a bee. Do not miss the dance for fear of a stepped-on toe. Things hurt for a reason. They warn and teach us. But too much fear of being hurt and you will be like the doll that never got played with but was thrown away still in its box.

6. Do not be afraid of The Devil.

He has no power over you except that which you personally and expressly choose to give him. If you find yourself in problems with the devil, what you truly have to fear is yourself.

7. Do not be afraid of The Unknown.

Everything was unknown at some time or another. Most of what is unknown to you now will always and ever remain that way, and will never be able to hurt you.

8. Do not be afraid of The Truth

The truth is all there is. There is more to fear in the nicest lie than in the harshest truth. Meet the truth face to face; you will probably find not only that it is not so fearful, but that you knew it all along.

9. Do not be afraid of Death

The only guarantee you had at birth was that someday you would die. It is just about the only thing that all mankind shares in common. If death is a step to the presence of a loving God or some other nice afterlife, that is nothing to fear. If death is the utter cessation of existence, leading only to an oblivion of which we will be unaware, that is likewise nothing to fear. If, however, you believe that your death will lead to some agonizing torment in retribution for the way you are living your life, then death is not what you need to fear, for you cannot change it. What you need to fear instead is the way you are living your life, and that you can change.

10. Do not be afraid of Clowns.

It is just make-up. They will probably not come and kill you in your sleep. Or maybe they will not. Or, you can hope they will not. For all the good that will do you.