Mindful Advent – Fear

Yes, it is a surprising meditation focus for our Mindful Advent: fear.  But Advent is a time of preparation, and being aware of fear in others and being prepared for it can help us to improve our world.

When we are aware that our loved ones (children, spouses/significant others, family), friends, coworkers are acting out of fear, then we can respond in ways that help mitigate or de-escalate their fear, rather than to inflame it.  In a way, this is how Elizabeth and Mary helped each other, as they no doubt experienced some apprehension or even fear at their unexpected circumstances.

When we are aware that someone is fearful and/or using fear to manipulate us into feeling or doing something that is against our better nature or contrary to the community’s best interest, then we can resist it.  Herod feared a rival to his throne, even if that rival came in the form of a baby.  He tried to manipulate the magi to get information for him so that (unbeknownst to them) he could do harm and mitigate this threat.  But they became aware of this situation (they slept on it), and resisted Herod by going home by another way, choosing to not give in to his fear.

Fear is something that affects us all.  How we respond to it can be helped by awareness, seeking help in community, and resisting its pull to our more base instincts.

Be calm, and be not afraid.

Leslie

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