Fear is mother of all painful emotions.
“WE HAVE NOTHING TO FEAR BUT FEAR ITSELF”
Franklin Theodore Roosevelt
Indeed fear is our greatest obstacle to happiness, peace and fulfillment on a personal, social and international level. All anger, hatred, prejudice, aggression, violence, and war can be ultimately attributed to fear. From the moment we relinquished the security of our mother’s womb and our umbilical cord was cut, we experienced separation, isolation, insecurity and fear.
We fear for our bodies and personalities because we know that they are vulnerable and mortal. We then, out of fear, try to create some sense of security by ensuring that we have enough people, money, objects and professional and social positions etc.
Then we experience a second level of fear, that we might not be able to keep all of these. We may lose them to death, decay or change and we are again fearful.
We fear not having what we need in order to feel secure and happy.
We fear losing these when we have them.
We fear others who might take these from us .
We fear change which might make them disappear
We fear death which means losing all this.
SOME TYPES OF FEARS
There are literally thousands of various manifestations of fear. We as a race can fear just about anything our imagination allows. Let us just list a few, while remembering that they all stem from the basic fear of pain, rejection or extinction of the ego or its various attachments. Some are afraid of animals, insects, spiders, cockroaches and centipedes, snakes, birds and other wild animals. We are afraid of each other. Some fear the opposite sex. The poor and rich might fear each other. Perhaps some are even afraid of themselves. Movies, television and newspapers are doing much to increase our mistrust, feeling of vulnerability and fear, by concentrating on violence, real and fictional. Thus we perceive our fellow beings as a threat to our safety and happiness. Some of us, for some “unreasonable reason”, chose to watch horror and violence movies which disrupt our feelings of peace and security for indefinite periods of time. After such an experience, our imagination working overtime, creates fear at the slightest unexpected sound or experience. Those of one race tend to be afraid of those of another. Some nations create nationalistic feelings by generating fear of other countries. Those, whose religious beliefs are weak, tend to become fanatics out of fear of being wrong. The idea is that the more people you can get to believe what you believe, the more right you are. We may fear heights, small spaces, wide open spaces, the ocean, fire, airplanes, trains, cars, elevators, or machines in general. Some fear lightning, thunder, storms, earthquakes or even strong wind. We also might fear exams, classrooms or failing in general, or making mistakes, taking chances, letting go, expressing our real feelings or beliefs. Many are afraid of telling the truth. Most of us are afraid of rejection and criticism, of not being loved or accepted. Some are afraid of falling «in love» or creating a love relationship because of the pain it may bring. Most fear speaking in front of large groups of people. Others fear being found out, because we fear that we will not be loved. We fear getting old, fear of losing someone’s love. Some perhaps subconsciously fear of not having enough to eat. We have learned to fear of God, nature, and the elements. Most fear cemeteries and spirits of the dead. Others might fear of not being listened to or being ignored. And then there is the fear of all fears; the fear of darkness. For many of us darkness offers a festive occasion for fear to play with our imagination. A dark unfamiliar room (or even a familiar one after seeing one of those horror films) becomes quite threatening. Darkness is the unknown and therefore is associated with danger and death. The mind can imagine anything hiding in the darkness. Darkness and the unknown are both symbols for ignorance which is the basic cause of fear; the fear of death. Of all these fears the most common are:
3. Death of a loved one
4. Our own death
5. Illness and weakness
6. Physical and or emotional pain
A QUESTIONNAIRE FOR DISCOVERING OUR FEARS
We can benefit more from our discussion concerning fear, if we have in mind our particular fears. Take a look at the following list to see what make cause you to feel uncomfortable. Basic fears can be expressed in unlimited ways according to each person’s specific mental mechanisms. The various expressions of fear have different names such as insecurity, anxiety, uncomfortableness, weakness, worry, inability, confusion, fear itself, depression, denial, shock, hysteria, panic, paralysis, anger, hate, rage, aggressiveness, violence, jealously etc. Remember that sometimes fears can be subconscious which means that we may not be aware that we fear something and may react with anger of other emotions, when the real emotion is fear. Although we may not fear, our inner child may. Check on the this list whatever makes you feel uncomfortable and and add any thing else you discover.
Sudden death by accident
Death of a loved one
Snakes, rats, mice, cockroaches
Failure at work
Failure in relationships
Failure at school,
Failure in life
Rejection from others
Being laughed at by others
God or his punishment
Loosing your freedom
Loosing your self worth
Conflicts with others
The sea, heights, fires
Cars, planes, boats
Elevators, small places
Large gatherings of people
To travel by your self
To lose your sanity
To be rejected in a love relationship
The opposite sex
Microbes and dirty things
Now have in mind what you fear as you continue reading
THE RESULTS OF FEAR
Fear and insecurity are synonymous. When we feel insecure, we naturally become concerned and spend great portions of time, energy, thought and money toward establishing external security. We focus our acquiring and protecting our sources of food, shelter, sex, money, possessions, prestige or any other external factors which will help us feel secure. This type of thinking and living is often, by necessity, ego-centered and at the expense of others. We are not secure enough to love others and give, but need to take. When such a psychology permeates our social and national psyche it can lead to aggression and war. When we feel fear and insecurity, we seldom have the confidence to try something new; we tend to stick to old habits and familiar ways. We fear the new and the unknown. Our lives become stale, boring, habitual, meaningless and without growth. We experiencing two groups of frequently conflicting needs; security needs and growth needs. Security needs must be fulfilled before we dare venture out to satisfy our growth needs. Few of us today feel secure enough to experience the pressure of our growth needs. This boring, habitual kind of life leads to an inertia; a living sleep, a living death. So much time and energy is being spent on satisfying our security addictions, that there is little or no energy left for emotional, mental or spiritual growth. Fear is also the cause and result of a feeling of vulnerability and mistrust. When we feel insecure, we feel threatened by unfamiliar situations or people. Thus, the development of racial hatred, religious intolerance, and international tensions and war. We mistrusts each other and act in a defensive, and often offensive, ways in order to protect ourselves from the imagined danger. When we fear, our reason is nullified and our imagination runs wild, creating the worst possible scenarios, which are usually far from the actual reality. Perception is distorted and we misinterpret the intentions and actions of others. When our reason is sufficiently overcome by a panicking imagination, we are moved to prejudice, closed-mindedness, anger, hate, and in extreme cases aggression, violence, cruelty and war. Even in cases where we do not get carried to such extremes, our relationships usually suffer. It is not possible to be open and loving when we are insecure and fearful, imagining all kinds of harm coming from the world around us. Living in fear means living in loneliness. Such irrational behavior reaches its climax in the mob mentality. When many human beings gather together in a large group, their mentality often tends to be reduced to that of the lowest of the members. It is similar to the fact that a chain is as strong as its weakest link. Large groups of people are not much different in their instinctual reactions from herds of animals and flocks of birds. If one panics in fear, all follow. We often hear of hundreds of persons injured and some even trampled to death at soccer matches, demonstrations, and other large gatherings. One or two angry unconscious people can cause a whole mob of ordinarily neutral individuals to go on a rampage, and destroy millions of dollars of property and even human lives. Living in fear means living with a constant underlying tension. There will be frequent secretions of adrenaline, and noradrenaline, by the adrenal glands as every unfamiliar person or event will cause alarm, and the «fight or flight» response. This is very exhausting for the nervous system, immune and endocrine systems. The pituitary gland and hypothalamus are thrown out of balance and the immune system is run down, setting the stage for a variety of physical and mental illness. Health and happiness flee from fear. Perhaps the most unfortunate result of fear is that it acts like a magnet attracting to us exactly what we fear. Fearful thoughts are like magnetic waves, which subconsciously interact with the world around us, attracting to us those very situations, and experiences, which we are fearing. If we fear thieves, we increase the possibility of encountering them. The same would be true of dogs, cockroaches, spiders, etc. We do not, however, create the death of a loved one by fearing that. We do not create the others’ reality. Attracting what we fear is actually very useful for our growth process, because this forces us to face and become familiar with what we fear, which is the first step towards overcoming it. Many of us have discovered by experience that our fear of an event was nonproportional to the problem actually created by that feared event. That our fear was unnecessary.
THE CAUSE OF FEAR
The prime and basic cause of all fear is our ignorance of what we really are. If we were convinced of our invulnerable eternal soul-nature, we would never have any fear whatsoever. Because we do not, or cannot, believe this truth, we feel alone, separate, isolated and susceptible to extinction or nonidentity. Because of this we identify with the body and a the complex of personality traits, which we call «I». All of our fears are based on our fear of the harm to, or the loss of, this personality and its various attachments. We fear the rejection or the extinction of this «I», death, darkness and the unknown. These basic fears then express themselves in various ways, depending our specific personality identifications, roles, attachments and experiences. All fears, no matter how specific they may appear, can be traced back to the basic fear of rejection of, pain to or extinction of the «I», or the loss of any of its security attachments.
Some subordinate factors also contribute to fear:
1. A FEELING OF SEPARATENESS increases our fear. When we feel close to people and nature we cannot easily fear them. Fear results from a feeling of alienation, which generates a general feeling of suspicion for all and everything.
2. UNFAMILIARITY with people and things also causes suspicion and fear. When we come in contact with someone dresses differently, wears his hair in a strange way, speaks in a different way or whom we do not easily understand, our security base is undermined and we tend to react with caution and, some times, defensive, or even offensive, behavior. This will be especially true when we feel a basic mistrust, or vulnerability, toward the world from which we feel separate.
3. Those factors of MISTRUST and VULNERABILITY function more intensely when we are strongly ATTACHED to certain situations, people and objects for our security. We play power games in order to protect our possessions, relationships or self-image when we suspect we are in danger of losing them.
4. When the above mentioned factors are present, they channel our IMAGINATION in negative ways, creating images of doom and suffering far beyond any physical reality or possibility. Imagination in itself is not negative; it is being misused by the fear complex of: Alienation, unfamiliarity, vulnerability, mistrust and attachment.
5. Another factor is MEMORY of previous negative experiences, in which we have either witnessed or suffered harm, loss or possibly death. Our subconscious mind stores memories of such unpleasant experiences from the past. We also carry with us instinctual fear complexes resulting from our evolution through the animal kingdom. We then project onto the present and future what we have experienced in the past, thus generating a distorted perception of reality.
Fear had its function in the animal kingdom, where the animal’s low state of consciousness leaves little recourse but to fight or flee. As humans with higher consciousness, however, we have alternative methods of dealing with potential dangers. Clearer examination of the situations, which we feared as dangerous, will show that they simply were not. How many times have we been stricken with fear upon experiencing a sudden sound or sight, only to realize eventually that we were completely wrong in our perception? How many times have we worried endlessly about a future event, imagining the worst, only to have everything work out fine? And even if we could not, at first, accept how things worked out, everything was dissolved in the ceaselessly flowing river of time and forgotten. Very few of our fears are based on a present reality, but rather focus on a remembered past, or an imagined future. Our fears seldom concern an immediate danger, such as a tiger attacking us, or a bomb falling on our heads. The majority of our fears find their support in past experiences, which we «interpreted» as painful or unpleasant, and which we then project with our imagination into the future. This is not only a waste of time but, as explained before, increases the possibility of the occurrence of that which we fear. Assuming that we are actually in danger in the present moment, again fear will only cause us to become stiff in body and unclear in mind. We could deal with danger much more efficiently if we perceived and acted with clarity, self confidence an courage. In some cases, we may not be able to remember any particular past experience which is causing us to fear. Today, more and more information is being uncovered about fears resulting from past lives, as well as prenatal and birth experiences. Through hypnotic regression and other techniques, memory of past lives and birth experiences have been uncovered in hundreds of thousands of people. Such techniques are being used today by psychologists, and other professionals seeking to help those suffering from unexplainable fears. Bringing these, previously suppressed subconscious, images into the light of the conscious mind, helps to dissolve the fear.
SOME WAYS IN WHICH WE CAN OVERCOME FEAR
As human beings in the process of evolution, it is imperative that we overcome the bondage of fear so that we may experience the security, peace, love and fulfillment which we desire, deserve and which are our destiny. Fear binds us to a lower level of consciousness with less love and happiness. The following qualities are opposite to, and antidotes for, fear: Courage, faith, love, knowledge, wisdom, understanding and inner peace. We can work on overcoming fear in some of the following ways.
1. Simply by having CONTACT, in gradual but increasing doses, with that object or situation we fear, we will, by experience, learn that in reality it is harmless to us. Fear of the sea could be gradually overcome by immersing ourselves to increasing depths over a period of time. Fear of heights can be eventually conquered through exposure to gradually increasing heights. This technique can be used with the fear of any real object or situation. The important factor to remember is to make the dose just right. We should start slowly and bring ourselves just to the threshold of fear, where fear just begins and we can still observe and work with the fear, by breathing and relaxation. Later the experience can be repeated this time increasing contact with the feared playing with our limits, and learning to relax while in contact. We can relax by breathing slowly and deeply while reminding our selves of the truth that we are not actually in danger but that our mind is being controlled by some false conditioning, probably from some past experience. At the moment we begin to feel fear, we can begin to breathe more slowly and deeply, while concentrating on relaxing the body and mind. We will notice that certain muscles are beginning to tense up. We can relax these muscles with the help of the breath and mental messages of relaxation. We may remember thoughts which help us to feel more secure, like thinking of some symbol of strength and protection like God. We can remind ourselves that our imagination is being exploited by the fear and the danger is not real.
2. Contact with the feared can also be made through the subconscious mind and the imagination. Through methods of hypnotism, mind control, and positive projection, we can imagine having contact with the feared. When we imagine our selves in contact with the feared object or situation, we might find that that we will experience the same types of emotional and physical reactions as when in actually in contact. We can then imagine alternative ways of reacting to that previously feared situation. If we have feared certain animals, insects, or even certain types of people, we can imagine ourselves as feeling safe, secure and peaceful while in contact with these fear-causing. We can imagine ourselves with self-confidence and courage. Such reprogramming of the subconscious mind will eventually alter the reactive mechanisms of our interaction with the physical world. Such reprogramming sessions can be done alone by those who are experienced in such techniques, but many will need guidance in getting started. Those, who chose to, can even imagine accepting dying. We can eventually reprogram ourselves to believe in our indestructible soul nature. This would remove all fear at the root.
3. Memory regression techniques can also be used to expose to the conscious mind the hidden sources of fear locked in the subconscious mind. Such is being done by many psychologists today. Individuals who have been severely handicapped in their everyday functioning by unreasonable fears, sometimes resulting in physical and mental illness, have been cured upon the release into the conscious mind of those hidden traumatic memories. Many case histories are available concerning those who had been affected by experiences of past; childhood memories, prenatal or birth traumas, and even from past lives.
4. Relaxation and rejuvenation of the body and mind through systematic practice of physical exercises, breathing techniques and relaxation techniques or meditation, can release traumas, stresses and fears lodged in the body and mind. As our whole being becomes more relaxed, tension and fear naturally subside, and inner peace and feelings of inner security develop. Relaxation brings greater peace, and greater peace allows us to react with less fear and tension, which allow more relaxation. The opposite is also true. Fear brings tension, thus creating more fear. When our energy level is higher, we tend to be more able to deal with life’s tests and difficulties. We feel stronger and more powerful, less fearful.
5. Study of ourselves and the world around us will help to reduce our fear. Study of the world will show us that many beings, situations and events which we feared, because of our unfamiliarity and ignorance, are actually not harmful at all. We tend to fear many types of animals, when the truth is that the animals have much more reason to fear us. We have caused harm to and killed many more of them than they have of us. Often we fear others because we project our own intentions onto them. An aggressive person, who wishes harm to others, will also imagine the same intentions in the others. A simple peace loving person will have less fears. Study of ourselves will uncover where our fears are unreasonable. A deeper study of our true nature, will eventually guide us to the realization that our existence is not limited to our personality, which we are desperately trying to protect. Eventually we will begin to perceive ourselves as eternal souls whose existence transcends the departure from the physical body. The more we understand the less there is that which is unfamiliar, unknown and threatening to us. As our wisdom increases, we realize that we really have nothing to fear in this world.
6. Growth groups in which people come together to share honestly and openly, for the purpose of self-improvement and self-understanding, can be very helpful for those of us wanting to overcome fears. Firstly, we would see that many of us have the same fears. We can then be more objective about seeing the fear. Talking about the fear makes it more objective, and helps us to relate to it as a separate entity the next time it arises. The group will give us emotional support, and we can think of the group the next time we are faced with the fear creating situation. In this way we help each other to grow more mentally and emotionally mature. In addition we get the benefit of feeling less isolated, less alienated, and more loved and understood.
7. We can develop a separateness from our fear by objectifying the part of our selves which fears. This can done by drawing how we imagine that part of our being looks. Or we can write a letter to that part of our personality which fears, or perhaps have a written or verbal dialogue with it. In this way, we are able to realize that we are not the part of our selves which is programmed to fear. We can then function parallel to it. Even though one part of our selves does not want to proceed out of fear, we can go on in spite of those feelings. This is called living parallel with the fear. We observe it, recognize it, and accept it, but function parallel to it, doing what we actually fear to do. This is also very much like behavioral therapy in which we gradually come into contact with what we fear.
Following is a letter written by a young man at the age of 25 after occasional periods of being held in a psychological clinic. He has understood his fear well and his letter will help us also understand ours.
A LETTER ADDRESSED TO FEAR
“Dear Fear, “I think I know quite a lot about you; with God’s help I more or less came to understand how you were born and how later you became so huge that you broke up my existence. The seed that bore you may have come from previous lives, but you fell on fertile ground and found the right conditions and grew so as to threaten everything in me. The ambience within the family, traumatic experiences, and perhaps things still unknown to me and yet to come, all that was food for you. “Now that you have gone into orbit and are low in the sky so that soon you will sink, I can see you as a huge piranha with innumerable black tentacles, an entity close to the form of death. I say that you are low in the sky because you still hold me captive, a prisoner. I know you originally came to protect me, but you hugged me dangerously tight, you distorted my ideas, you engendered violence and aggression, you overfed my ego and almost destroyed me, you grew metastasis in every part of my being to such a degree that at the sound of your name alone I am terrified. I am afraid even when you are not there. In the end, like a ghost, you began to haunt me always and everywhere. In this ceaseless running you imposed and forced on me I have been running on many evil and dangerous roads. “There is no doubt that if it weren’t for you I would not be escaping to find new horizons. Although I have tasted death because of you and am still in pain, I thank you for chasing me. On the dark paths I had taken, I suddenly saw in the sky a star like a flickering candle, which began to guide me and determine my life. As time goes by, slowly but steadily, and this star will shine more brightly and make my progress surer, I want you to understand that this light is divine and will gradually illuminate every nook and cranny of my being, the places where you are now. “So I thank you for bringing me so far to protect me. Now I don’t need you any more. Go away. My real self is beginning to grow, that which fears nothing, is strong and serene. “As for you, the dwellings you find and the reality in which you flourish are all nothing but delusion. “I thank God that, with His help, I dare to face you. With the ever- increasing light I shall beam onto you, you will begin to disappear – seeking another dark place in the shadows. “I am already certain that you are low in the sky and some day will no longer exist. ”
This letter teaches some important points about fear and coming to terms with it.
1. He speaks of coming to understand how this fear was born in his system. This is very helpful in being able to objectify it when we observe it. We can then perceive it as something separate from us, which was programmed into us at some certain moment.
2. He gives it a form “huge piranha”. This also facilitates objectifying and distancing it.
3. He understands that at first the fear was a protective mechanism, but that it then got out of control.
4. He realizes now that he does not need it for protection, that he can find healthier forms of protection.
5. He also realizes that he can heal this part of himself by sending love and light, for fear can exist only in darkness, ignorance and lack of love.
8. Faith in God can be a great help in confronting any danger, real or imaginary. When we believe in a benign divine being whose presence and power permeates the universe, we feel protected. When we believe that all that happens is in some way controlled or allowed by this benign and / or loving being, then we have faith that even seemingly accidental and unjust events have some higher purpose and thus a higher justice, even when we are not able to understand it. This is a matter faith, which means we believe in a power or higher law which we cannot perceive or prove exists. If we could see the divine or its laws, we would call this knowledge and not faith. Faith and/ or knowledge are the ultimate solutions to fear. No one can guarantee to us that something what we fear will not happen. It probably if very unlikely, but the possibility is always there. Thus the ultimate solution to fear is to think positively, that all will turn out well, but at the same time, know that whatever happens will be the best possible solution for our growth process and that we do have the power to handle it. Thus, many of the situations we may have feared, offer to us an opportunity to grow stronger and more self-confident. Faith in a Divine Justice allows us to enter openly into every situation knowing that we will encounter only what serves our own evolutionary process, whether it be pleasant or unpleasant. Some of us who are ridden with unreasonable fears may be suffering from a subconscious guilt. Often we fear because we believe that we will be punished in some way for “sins”. We have been programmed to believe that we are not pure or good and that because of this we have lost divine protection and even that we might be punished. Thus, guilt leads to fear. On the other hand recognizing our inner divine nature and our innate oneness with the universe will allow us to experience inner security.
9. By practicing spiritual knowledge or discrimination between our Selves and our minds, we can observe fear functioning on its own. The idea here is that since we can observe the mind and comment on its activity, obviously, we cannot be the mind, but rather some higher entity which is observing it. Thus we can see that it is not our true Self which is expressing fear, but the mind, which is only an organ or instrument. We can watch the mind, the imagination and the whole passing drama of our lives as a witness. We can reaffirm “I am not this body. I am not this mind. I am not this fear. I am the witness of all this.” Those who believe so can add, “I am a soul in union with all other souls and with God.” When we begin to feel the truth of these statements, we no longer fear others, because there are no others. We realize our oneness with all. We feel a loving union and thus security with all. The fear created by the cut umbilical cord and the feeling of separateness is removed, because a spiritual umbilical cord has been reestablished to the all Creation.
10. The development of pure love is also and ultimate solution for fear. We cannot fear what we love. Love is based on unity and fear are alienation – separateness. St. John the Evangelist has written in one of his letters, «There is no fear in love; perfect love drives out all fear. So then, love has not been made perfect in anyone who is afraidΖ». Swami Sarvananda agrees that, «The basis of fear is the feeling of otherness. Love tends to union, separateness tends to fear». Love and understanding come hand in hand. We love when we understand others, and we understand when we love. When we are filled with love for all, we will not feel separate and therefore intimidated by our environment. Many children and young animals feel this loving union with their environment and have not learned fearful reactions yet. Thus a dog, cat, snake and lion, all growing up together from infancy, would feel no threat from, or fear of, each other.
This reminds me of a true story told to me by a friend. He was walking in the mountains of Colorado and began repeating a prayer as he walked. The more he repeated the prayer, the happier and in tune with nature he became. Eventually he was running ecstatically along the path, feeling total unity with all of nature, with all that he perceived around him. As he turned a bend on the path, he was face to face with a mountain lion just a few yards away. He looked into the lion’s eyes and felt great love and spoke to him, “please don’t be afraid.” The lion turned and walked away. My friend could not fear the lion as long as he was feeling so much love.
SOME QUESTIONS TO ASK OUR SELVES
When working with other emotions, we will almost always have to, in the end, confront the fears behind those emotions, especially the fears of rejection, loneliness, insecurity, of the loss of whatever is important to us, including our freedom. The ultimate solution for all fears is faith in God, the divine plan and in our immortal, invulnerable spiritual nature. Until we become sure of these, all other solutions are useful.
Thus some basic questions for getting free from fear are:
1. “What do I imagine is going to happen to me if what I fear happens? or What do I imagine is going to happen to me if what I fear may not happen actually does not happen?”
2. ” And if things do not happen as I want them to, what will happen to me?” This question is repeated over and over each time asking what we fear will happen “if the worse that we fear happens?” This will ultimately lead us to a few basic answers such as:
a. I will not be loved and accepted. I will be totally alone.
b. I will not be safe – I may die or be done harm to.
c. I may lose my freedom of movement and not be able to care for myself or satisfy my needs.
d. I will suffer emotionally. I will feel emotional pain.
Once we arrive at such basic answers, there are two basic directions :
1. We ask ourselves if we can accept even that final possibility, which until now has been unacceptable for us at this point.
2. We ask ourselves if there are any spiritual truths or logical reasonings, which can help us believe that something like this will not happen.
POSITIVE PROJECTION AND ACCEPTANCE
Each will find his own balance between projecting positively that what we fear will not happen and accepting that we will be fine even if it does happen. Some of us may chose the second, that is to try to mentally accept the worst without projecting it will occur, believing that divine justice and wisdom will always bring to us exactly what we need for our evolutionary process. What the divine justice brings may be pleasant or painful, but it will be what is best. This has the advantage that we go to the core of our being and realize that we will be able to survive (even death) and continue and be okay whatever happens. This should not be confused with fatalism. We are required by the vary nature of our being, and by the laws of evolution, to actively seek to create the most positive reality we can for ourselves, our family and society as a whole. What we are accepting without fear will be the results of those efforts. We do not give up the efforts.
Most of us, however, do not have such unshakable faith in our immortal and divine nature and thus are better off strengthening our faith in Divine protection. That all will turn out positively and nothing “bad” (which for most of us means – unpleasant or difficult) will happen. Thus we chose to project that all will turn out exactly as we would like. Positive thinking is extremely important. Often things may turn out negatively, simply because we think negatively.
Thus we need to think positively, optimistically while simultaneously feeling capable of dealing with any outcome.