There Is A Part Of Me That Knows No Fear

Cosmic brilliance. There is a part of me that knows no fear
Step 41 of Steps to Knowledge, “I am not afraid of the power of God.”

In the 2018 Encampment of the New Message from God, we contemplated an increasingly difficult world. A world of diminishing resources, affected climate, environmental degradation, and extraterrestrial intervention. How shall we respond to such a world? The answer we contemplated was “moving with Knowledge.” Knowledge is described in a number of ways in the New Message from God. It is called the deeper spiritual intelligence that God has placed within each person. It is called a person’s True Self, a Self that is not apart from life. It is called the love of God. It is something we seek to approach and follow.

There is a part of me that knows no fear

Gears morphing into meadow. There is a part of me that knows no fear
Step 51 of Steps to Knowledge, “Let me recognize my fears so that I may see the truth beyond them.”

In the book “Wisdom from the Greater Community, Volume II,” the following is said about Knowledge.

“This question of honesty would seem to be hopelessly complex and difficult if it were not for the presence of Knowledge within you, for Knowledge is always honest, regardless of what it encounters. Knowledge is unafraid of anything. There is nothing in the world that can harm Knowledge. Therefore, the more you are allied with Knowledge, the more fearless you will become, the more secure you will become, the greater the sense of self and identity you will have, and the greater the sense of direction and relationship you will possess. This gives you the foundation upon which to expand your range of honesty and to receive its rewards in new and unexpected ways.”

Crashing ocean wave. There is a part of me that knows no fear
Step 87 of Steps to Knowledge “I will not be afraid of what I know.”

Approaching Knowledge requires effort

There is a part of me that knows no fear. But fear is a part of the human experience. It takes some work to approach this fearless Knowledge. In the 365 steps of the book Steps to Knowledge, there are 11 steps at various intervals that address the subject of fear.

Step 41 – I am not afraid of the power of God.
Step 51 – Let me recognize my fears so that I may see the truth beyond them.
Step 87 – I will not be afraid of what I know.
Step 128 – My Teachers are with me. I need not fear.
Step 151 – I will not use fear to support my judgments.
Step 152 – I will not follow fear within the world.
Step 156 – I will not be concerned about myself today.
Step 162 – I will not be afraid today.
Step 226 – Knowledge is with me. I will not be afraid.
Step 301 – I will not lose myself in anxiety today.
Step 304 – I will not be a student of fear today.

Climbers on Mount Elbrus. There is a part of me that knows no fear
Step 128 of Steps to Knowledge, “My Teachers are with me. I need not fear.”

How shall we respond?

I can imagine people reading this and thinking “Why don’t the students of this teaching become scientists and engineers? They could analyze and mitigate the effects of the changes they believe are coming.” Who knows, such a thing may happen in the future. I believe we are becoming more literate regarding various solutions. But it’s hard to think clearly and productively if one is consumed with fear. There is a part of me that knows no fear. I hope and work to follow that part of me.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

Страх на пути к истине

Страх на пути к истине

Touch drawing by Deborah Koff-Chapin

For English version click here.

Есть суфийская притча, которая называется «Страх на пути к истине».

— Почтенный, я хотел бы, подобно тебе, стать искателем истины, — сказал юноша суфийскому шейху. — Как мне достичь этого? Каким путём?

— Путь к истине нелёгок, сын мой, — ответил шейх. — Поэтому будет лучше, если ты присоединишься к сообществу странников. Этот путь — не простая дорога. Он опасен. Там встречаются свои разбойники, препятствия и неприятности. Если боишься, то сиди дома. Ведь когда веют зерно, то отделяют шелуху от зерна. На пути шелуха — это страх.

Сегодня я занимаюсь Шагом 51 из Шагов к Знанию: “Позволь мне узнавать свои страхи, чтобы увидеть истину вне них” во второй раз.

Когда я сделала этот Шаг в первый раз, я написала в своем журнале:

“Я чувствую, что я понимаю страх, его механизм и как он влияет на людей. Страх подрезает крылья и препятствует тому, чтобы люди рискнули и достигли своего полного потенциала. Страх не защищает меня от перипетий жизни, что будет, то будет, что бы ни было. Просто надо смело стоять перед страхом и шагать через него, полагая, что результат будет ещё лучше, чем я могла предположить. Есть воображаемые страхи и есть реальные страхи. Страх изнуряет и поражает, внушая убеждение в том, что мы не способны справиться с жизнью».

После этих смелых слов, я всё-таки добавила:

“Однако, я допускаю, что я не понимаю ничего о страхе вообще, потому что страх редко меня преследует. Я прошу о ясности по поводу страха”.

Страх на пути к истине

Страх на пути к истине

Во второе прохождение этого Шага, могу ли я сказать, что я получила больше ясности о страхе? Я не знаю, но одно могу сказать точно, я получила указание в правильное направление. Мое внимание было обращено на одно из учений Нового Послания от Бога под названием «Разлука». Оно ещё не было переведено на русский язык, но начало можно слушать на английском на этом видео и читать здесь.

Я думаю, что страх только существует в пределах моей текущей ситуации, то есть, в той ограниченном физическом измерении, в котором я сейчас существую. Я живу в разлуке от своего Источника, от своей более глубокой сущности, поэтому я живу в иллюзии страха. Страхи рождаются из того меняющего, непостоянного, хаотичного состояния, в котором я сейчас живу, а значит, они являются не существенными. Когда я понимаю, что мое естественное состояние – это соединение с Источником, а не в разлуки от него, то места для страхов в моей жизни нет.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

Beyond Fear Lies The Truth

beyond fear lies the truth

Touch drawing by Deborah Koff-Chapin

I am happy to accept that beyond fear lies the truth. However, I have this presumptuous notion that I know what fear is all about. I am currently on Step 51 of Steps to Knowledge: “Let me recognize my fears so that I may see the truth beyond them” for the second time.

When I did this Step the first time, I wrote in my journal:

“I feel as though I understand fear, its mechanism and how it influences people – it prevents people from being who they really are since it restricts them, it prevents people from thinking in expansive ways, it keeps them boxed in. Fear clips the wings and prevents people from taking risks and reaching their full potential. I have worked with my fears and feel the reality beyond them. Fear will not stop what is going to happen to me, it will happen anyway. The thing is to boldly face fear and step through it, believing that the outcome will be much greater than I ever imagined. It is the same as following a path I had no intention of taking and finding myself right where I need to be, stepping out of my comfort zone and being prepared to face whatever awaits me. There are imaginary fears and real fears. Fear is defeating and debilitating, it freezes your ability to respond adequately, thus reducing your chances of success. Metaphorically speaking, in order to walk a tightrope, you have to lose your fear of falling.”

After these bold words, I did have the foresight to add:

“All in all, however, this is a difficult Step to grasp. Perhaps I don’t understand fear at all because I have not been in situations that bring up fear. I am asking for clarity about fear.”

Beyond fear lies the truth

Can I say I have more clarity about fear the second time around? I still accept that beyond fear lies the truth and I receive confirmation of this.

The New Message from God revelation called “The Separation” speaks perfectly to this dilemma. There I read:

“To understand the reality of God and God’s work in the world and in the universe around you, you must understand your own situation clearly, for you are living in a state of separation, in a physical reality, in time and space.

“You are living in separation from your Source and from Creation itself, which exists beyond the physical reality entirely. You are living in a temporary reality. It is impermanent. It is changing. It is expanding. It is chaotic. It is governed by its own laws and dynamics.

“You are a spiritual being living in a physical reality.

“To become really true to yourself and right with yourself, you must gain access to your deeper nature, which is still connected to Creation, still connected to that Greater Reality from which you have come and to which you will return.”

I think that coming to understand this separation, realizing the limits of my current situation, i.e. that I am living in a state of separation, is the key to recognizing my fears and seeing the truth beyond them. I recognize that my fears are born of this changing, chaotic state that I currently live in, so they are as impermanent and temporary as it is. But I have a deeper nature, a nature still connected to Creation, to my Source, to a Greater Reality, and in this state of consciousness fear has no place.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

Don’t Let Me Forget

Rabindranath Tagore. Don't let me forgetI recalled this poem by Rabindranath Tagore as I contemplated Step 95 “How can I possibly fulfill myself?” of Steps to Knowledge. Here is the portion of Step 95 which sparked a memory:

“Only in fantasy and imagination can you possibly even entertain the idea of fulfilling yourself. There is no fulfillment here, only increasing confusion. As the years progress, you will feel a growing darkness within you, as if a great opportunity has been lost. Do not lose this opportunity to realize life as it truly exists and to receive fulfillment as it is truly offered to you.”

Don’t let me forget

I recall Step 95 having a significant impact on me when I did it in October of 2011. I consider this another step to be addressed in a series of posts, like Step 26, “My errors give birth to my Knowledge,” and Step 51, “Let me recognize my fears so that I may see beyond them.” I am letting Rabindranath Tagore open the discussion. This is a slightly modernized version provided by Robert Bly. The original version is here.

If I am not to meet you again in this life then I want to feel that I have missed the meeting, don’t let me forget, let me feel the pain of it in my dreams and while awake.

As the time passes in the black dust of the body, and I get fat with money, I want to feel that I have gotten nothing out of it all — don’t let me forget, I want to feel the slivers of pain in my dreams and while awake.

When I walk up the steps, exhausted and tense after a long trip, or when I climb into some lonely bed, I want to feel that the long trip is still ahead of me — don’t let me forget, I want to feel the pain in my legs both while asleep and while awake.

When my house is all cleaned, and drinks are set here and there, and I hear people laughing, I want to feel that I haven’t invited you to my house — don’t let me forget, I want to feel the pain of that grief both while asleep and while awake.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

I Will Accept My Non-Acceptance As It Is

Step 70 of Steps to Knowledge is a review, but not a review of the past seven steps, as Step 56 and Step 63 are.  Step 70 is a review of the past three weeks worth of practice.  Step 70 is a review of Steps 50 through 69.  One could call it “the little big review,” as Step 49, a review of Steps 1 through 48, is “the big review.”  Steps 1 through 7 are reviewed a total of three times (Step 7, Step 14, Step 49). Steps 8 through 48 are reviewed two times (once in the weekly review, and once in Step 49). Steps 50 through 62 are reviewed two times (once in the weekly review, and once in Step 70). Steps 64 through 69 are reviewed once, in Step 70.  This is the first of a series of three posts on the Step 70 review.

Step 70 is one of three steps (49, 70, and 140) which use the word “Congratulations!”  I’m not exactly sure why congratulations are in order, but anyone who has reached this point realizes that Steps to Knowledge means what it says.  Therefore, I will accept the idea that a certain accomplishment has taken place.

I wrote more about my experience in the Step 56 and Step 63 reviews than I did in the Step 70 review.  But I believe it might still be useful to share what I wrote with a little bit of commentary.

I will accept my non-acceptance as it is

Step 50 – Today I will be with Knowledge – “I seem to recall that I did the practice, but I have no memory of any particular experience.”

Step 51 – Let me recognize my fears so that I may see the truth beyond them – “There is truth beyond my fear that I’m going to **** it all up, fail to reclaim Knowledge.”  In the Step 56 review I wrote “I recall the Bible verse about how the devil, through the fear of death, keeps people in lifelong bondage. Fear reduces to the fear of death, when the chain is followed long enough.  I considered the truth behind a laundry list of fears.”  I am pleased with myself that I wrote a number of posts about this Step.

Step 52 – I am free to find the source of my Knowledge – “I am free to receive God.” In the Step 56 review I wrote “I didn’t get this Step. God is the source of my Knowledge. Does this step mean I’m free to find God today?  I took a vacation of a couple of months before completing this step in the midst of my bewilderment.” On further review, I consider that an error. Don’t do that.

Step 53 – My gifts are for others – “I am mystified by my gifts.  I don’t even know what my gifts are. Child said my autism is a gift.” In the Step 56 review I wrote “This Step was not controversial to me.  I have had a lifelong desire to contribute, but it has been thwarted, mocked, stomped on till it don’t move no more.”

Step 54 – I will not live in idealism – “I have an ideal to be normal.  I have an ideal to be useful.” I wrote in the Step 56 review, “I only have 70 trillion ideals, be a super-missionary, end world hunger, enlighten the planet, etc.”  Between the time I did this step and now, I have given up on the ideal of being normal.  I would like to fulfill my mission in life, though.

Step 55 – I will accept the world as it is – “So this is the world I came to serve.  Talk about your fixer upper.”  In the Step 56, review, I wrote “I accept that I don’t want to accept the world as it is, not even a little bit.”  Acceptance has to start somewhere.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

If Fear Is The Diagnosis, What Is The Prescription?

The Mechanism Of Fear

There seems to be a general consensus that fear disrupts people from acting as effectively as they would otherwise.  There seem to be different remedies for fear in different communities and traditions.

I recall being taught by certain Christian teachers to reject fear out of hand as an evil, ungodly spirit.  But they also spoke of the necessity of preparation, of feeding one’s faith.

I recall A Course in Miracles characterizing fear as but a illusory thought to be rejected.  Lesson 48 in the Workbook for Students is “There is nothing to fear.”

The book Das Energi by Paul Williams said to cultivate a reflex of wiping out fear.

Paul Atreides Is Tested

The Bene Gesserit sisterhood of the Dune books by Frank Herbert had a Litany Against Fear.

Steps to Knowledge teaches that while the experience of fear is real, there is a remedy of recognizing them, recognizing we don’t have to be stuck with them, and recognizing that they are not the complete story:

“In your two practice periods today, evaluate the existence of your fears and remind yourself that your reality is beyond them, but that you must recognize them to understand their damaging presence in your life. Close your eyes and repeat the idea for today; then consider each fear that arises in your mind. Remind yourself that the truth is beyond that specific fear. Allow all fears to arise and be evaluated in this way.”

Furthermore, part of the constraints of the mission we have in life to fulfill is that we live in a world full of people with different levels of susceptibility to fear.  We live in a world full of people different levels of effectiveness at dealing with fear.  We live in a world where some people make more and worse fear-driven errors than others.

“To be without fear, you must understand fear—its mechanism, its influence on people and its result in the world. You must recognize this without deception and without preference. You are a great being working in a limited context, in a limited environment. Understand the limitations of your environment and understand the limitations of your vehicle, and you will no longer hate yourself for being limited.”

The bit about being a great being in a limited context is a recap of Step 46, “I must be small to be great.”  Part of the Steps to Knowledge prescription is having compassion for people with fears.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

I Have A Vanishing Point In My Heart

Bloodhound Gang

Maybe you believe, like the Bloodhound Gang, that human beings ain’t nothin’ but mammals.  If you do, I’m really glad you’re here, even if you think this entire blog is non-well-formed gobbledygoop.  My comeback to the idea that human beings ain’t nothin’ but mammals is in the words of King Solomon.  I like these words because they have the poetic quality of describing a complex set of phenomena in just a few words.

He [God] has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end. (Ecclesiastes 3:11, New International Version)

The word which is translated “eternity” means…

“properly concealed, that is, the vanishing point; generally time out of mind (past or future), that is, (practically) eternity; frequentative adverbially (especially with the prepositional prefix) always

To be a human being is to have a mystery inside oneself.  To be a human being is to wonder about always.  To be an animal is to be focused on individual and species survival, and the threats to individual and species survival.

Step 51 of Steps to Knowledge has its own ideas on what human beings are, while confirming the words of Solomon:

“Your life is not born of fear. Your Source is not born of fear. To be able to recognize your fear means that you must realize that you are part of something greater.”

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

Are My Fears Real?

Obsessive Compulsive DisorderAre my fears real?  I say it all depends on what the meaning of the word “fears” is.

There are some people who sincerely define “fears” as “things or situations that I don’t want to experience.”  In my mind, these people are investing their fear into the things and situations

There are some people who sincerely define “fears” as illusions and deceptions.  They consider fear to be an acronym for phrases such as “False Events Appearing Real” or “False Evidence Appearing Real.”  But what do these people do with their experience?

There are some people who define “fears” as “the physiological and emotional responses to things or situations that I don’t want to experience.”  I say that definition of “fears” is unquestionably real.  Sometimes that body/mind response gets connected in the mind to the thing or situation to which the body/mind is responding.

Step 51 of Steps to Knowledge, in my opinion, takes the third meaning of “fears,” but addresses all three perspectives:

“Your obstacles must be recognized in order for you to see beyond them. If they are ignored or denied, if they are protected or called by other names, you will not realize the nature of your restraint. You will not understand that which oppresses you.”

If my fear is invested in other things or situations, then I have given power over me to those things or situations.  I have put myself in a position of weakness.

If I attempt to assert that my fear doesn’t exist, when physiological and emotional responses are clearly taking place, I am attempting to redact my experience, and creating a false self which is apart from life.

But how do I break the connection between the body/mind response, and the thing or situation to which the body/mind is responding?  How do I unwind the investment of my fear into some thing or situation?  I believe the answer Steps to Knowledge would have at this point is to observe the response and observe the connection being made without judgment.  I believe Steps to Knowledge would tell me, in the words of John Lennon, to watch the wheels of my fears go ’round, to carefully observe the spinning, and what makes them spin.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.

Let’s Face Our Fears, Shall We?

What do people fear the most?  The Book of Lists reports the top ten human fears as

  1. Speaking before a group
  2. Heights
  3. Insects and bugs
  4. Financial problems
  5. Deep water
  6. Sickness
  7. Death
  8. Flying
  9. Loneliness
  10. Dogs

Shakespeare’s Hamlet wondered why people keep living and suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.  He concluded that the prospect of what happens after death terrifies people to such an extent that they put up with the troubles of life.

Step 51 of Steps to Knowledge, “Let me recognize my fears so that I see the truth beyond them,” is the first step where the word fear is contained in the step itself.  The word “fear” is mentioned in passing in earlier steps, and I plan to describe those passing mentions in another post.

There are many ideas in our culture regarding fear, what it is (or isn’t), where it comes from, how it works, and what to do about it.  Let’s just say that some of these ideas are more helpful than others.  Just as Step 26, “My errors give birth to my Knowledge,” addressed a number of ideas in our culture regarding error, Step 51 addresses a number of ideas in our culture regarding fear.  I’m feeling an inclination to unpack this in a series of posts.

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Welcome to Mystery of Ascension! Добро пожаловать в Тайну просветления! We document the study of the New Message from God in general, and the book Steps to Knowledge in particular. Мы тут делимся своим опытом изучения Нового Послания от Бога, в общем, и книги Шаги к Знанию в частности. Find out more about us here. Узнайте больше о нас здесь. Find out how to contact us here. Узнайте, как связаться с нами здесь.