Emotions, Fear, Hope, Meditation, Observation, Self, Spirituality

“He Gave Up All Hope of Living”

I once had a cousin, very much older than me, who was a combat soldier in World War II.  He told my brother that he began the war so terrified he would die he could barely function.  After a while, though, he gave up all hope of living and became profoundly convinced he could not survive the war.  Only after he gave up hope, he said, was he  “able to endure combat and fight back without going crazy from fear”.

Hope breeds fear.  Fear breeds hope.  At least it seems that way to me.  I think in order to dispense with one, we must dispense with both.

At work, the hope of a raise or promotion seems to provoke anxiety — in some sense, fear — that we will not get one.  In mating, the hope he or she will accept us seems to provoke fear that he or she will not.  In the market, the hope we will take advantage of someone seems to provoke fear we ourselves might be taken advantage of.  In life, hope for life seems to provoke fear of death.  Indeed, in nearly every area, hope and fear seem bound to each other.

If I am right that hope and fear are bound to each other, then then that can be seen.  It is because I believe I have observed the link between them while meditating that I think they are bound.  Put differently, there is no reason you should take my word for these things.  You can go look for yourself.