Do you notice the ebb and flow of your emotions? The gravitation towards some feelings and the aversion to others? Hopefully, you know where you stand on the gamut of emotions – what your most and least favored feelings are. Faith is a force that we don’t often think of as being an emotion, but it is a “felt experience” as much as is fear.
Faith and fear are two poles on a continuum. At any time you are at some point on that continuum between 100% faith and 100% fear.
When you notice an experience of fear it is good to notice where you are on the continuum. It is good to remember that your location changes a lot on this continuum, and that many factors influence the shifting location. A beneficial experiment is to pay close enough attention to your state – whether it be faith, fear, sadness, depression, anger, or anything – that you can notice your actual movement to the right or left on that state’s continuum.
It is also good to remember that neither faith nor fear exist “out there”. They don’t “appear in nature”. Faith and fear are what we create within us in response to some thing or situation out there.
Copyright © 2014 Jim Lehrman