Jan 052011

“We’re here to live this storm of wild wonder that is the unfolding of phenomena within our minds, within our consciousness. And when the fear of it goes, then our reception of it is wondrous beyond belief.”

John Sherman, at a Worldwide Online Meeting, Dec. 18, 2010

A few nights ago, I was kneeling on the living room floor with our two dogs as they vied for and got my full attention. The little old slobbery boxer nuzzled under one arm while the goofy, angora-soft lab pushed his way under the other. Multi-colored Christmas lights sparkled around the window, and the hauntingly beautiful, other-worldly music of Cirque du Soleil’s Saltimbanco filled the room.

Suddenly I found myself having an experience of rapture. Tears rolled down my cheeks and I felt that movement around my heart. You know the feeling —  that humming like there’s an earthquake starting in there? I could barely contain myself.

I was simply and excruciatingly thrilled to be alive. Intensely and unreservedly alive. And every cell in my body was bursting with the wonder of it.

Don’t you just love it when you feel such appreciation for the gift of being alive?

Embrace the Storm of Wild Wonder

It’s not that I was happy because I have my precious dogs, am in a warm & cozy house, am married to the love of my life, or any/all of the obviously positive gifts that have been bestowed upon me.

I was happy even though I don’t have a fancy house, I lost my life saving a few years ago, I’m a basket case when it comes to being productive, and despite all the apparently difficult or challenging situations that have presented themselves.

As far as I could tell, I was happy because I was saying yes to it — to all of it — fully and completely. I was momentarily allowing myself to fully embrace life without the fear that is so often lurking around in the nooks and crannies. I was without the often-present sense that I am somehow at stake here. I wasn’t keeping life at arm’s length for fear that I would be hurt. I wasn’t judging some things as good and others as bad.

This means saying yes to the adventure. For me right now that’s to the launching of a brand new career at the ripe old age of 56. For you, of course, it’s whatever comprises your adventure; those things that excite you and challenge you at the same time.

But at an even deeper level, we say yes to trusting enough in the now to let go of control (as if we ever had control anyway).

We say yes to being alive in a world where everything changes every minute and every second. Where nothing is ever the same from one blink of the eye to the next. Where the unknown looms hugely in front of us, and there are no guarantees.

We say yes to allowing the living, breathing being that we are to be fully alive and to shine its light gloriously in each and every moment.

Dissolve the Fear

Of course this exhilarating fearlessness occurs in our lives from time to time. But isn’t it always rather fleeting? Lately, it’s becoming much less so for me, and more and more a part of who I am.

I’m sure that’s in large part because just over a year ago I discovered a simple – dirt simple – process that has been slowly but surely dissolving the fear, just as promised.

This fear-dissolving process consists of a simple act of looking. Looking at yourself. And I don’t mean psychologically or emotionally. I don’t even mean spiritually. I mean looking at who or what you are at your core. The simple nature of you.

And you don’t even have to see who or what you are, or understand it. You just have to look. And if you do this periodically, then over time the fear melts away.

Is that amazing or what?

I’ll continue to share on this blog what it feels like to have the existential fear of life gradually disappear, and the significant impact it’s had on my experience of life.

I’ll also share more about how you can do it even though I’ve already said it all (yes, it really is that simple).

For now though, if you’re interested in learning more, you can hear it from the proverbial horse’s mouth at River Ganga Foundation. John and Carla Sherman offer a bounty of information in the form of transcripts, audios, videos, and their book Look at Yourself.

I’ve been a spiritual aspirant all my life yet this is a whole new paradigm from anything I’ve ever come into contact with. I highly recommend you check it out.

What are you saying yes to, or what might you want to say yes to that you’ve not? Please share!

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  14 Responses to “Dare to Bop Fear in the NO’s and Enjoy the Euphoria of YES”


    I was thinking as I was reading your post that I do not struggle with fear so much as impatience. Impatience to get my home businesses off the ground so I can leave my 9-to-5 job. But, then it hit me. The impatience was actually based on fear. Fear that I would NOT get my home businesses off the ground and I would not be able to leave my 9-to-5 job. *slaps herself in forehead*

    Well, thank you, Patti. I guess I have some letting to do 🙂


      Hi Eliza,

      Thanks for your comment. It’s so true. I do the same thing, and ultimately, it just keeps boiling down to fear.

      And as I think about your little epiphany (oh, you’ve sparked at least 2 more posts!), I’m not sure it’s even about letting because you’ve already arrived! You’re here! (And aren’t we lucky you are. ;-))

      What I love about this process of looking at yourself to dissolve fear is it doesn’t take any other doing or understanding or letting or anything. It just works, I’m finding.

      Enjoy your journey, and until next time, namaste.


    Hi Patti,

    Acceptance and appreciation of life and all of its ups and downs is truly a powerful and moving experience. It usually takes a near brush with death for people to realize the joy of being alive. But for those who are spiritually aware, they understand this joy intuitively. Your experience and sharing is a reminder of this.

    As hard as we try, we cannot control everything in life. All we can do is to make sure we go with the flow and not against it so that we don’t cause additional problems for ourselves. Being able to accept everything that life has in store for us is a powerful way to let go of the fear we feel when it comes to the unknown.

    For me I try to realized the irrationality of fear, embrace it and let it pass through me. Although I have read a few ways of dealing with fear, I enjoyed this litany on fear I found in the science-fiction book Dune.

    I look forward to reading more about how to deal with fear in life. It is always good to learn to manage fear. 🙂

    Irving the Vizier


      Hi Irving,

      Thanks so much for coming by! What a great contribution you’ve made with your obviously thoughtful comments. So true what you say about a brush with death being a potent wake up call.

      And thanks for putting the link to your litany on fear article. I especially like the part of the Dune quote “Where the fear has gone, there will be nothing. Only I will remain.” Hear hear!

      I also agree that some of the suggestions you make can give great comfort when it comes to being fearful. I think where we really end up “in trouble” is that most (if not all) of the time we are in fear and don’t even know it — we’ve gotten so used to it.

      I’m glad you find this topic interesting and very much look forward to seeing you here again. I’m sure my readers would love that! 😉


    Fear has always been my enemy and its really hard for me to dissolve it. Perhaps I need to let go and accept the storm of life. May by this way I will experience liberation from my illusory fears. 🙂


      Hi Walter,

      Welcome! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings. It is hard to dissolve it… or so I used to think. It’s hard to dissolve it in the usual ways we hear about. I think they manage it for a time (and certainly nothing wrong with that) but eventually it comes back. At least that’s been my experience.

      What’s amazing to me is how this simple process John Sherman offers us takes the effort out of it. Well, not the basic (and minimal) effort of wanting to do it and then doing it, but it really does remove any struggle, and it’s nothing at all like “hard”. That’s my kind of process 😉

      I’m so glad you found your way here. Thank you!


    But at an even deeper level, we say yes to trusting enough in the now to let go of control (as if we ever had control anyway).

    I love this entire post. Just what I needed to hear. I can be a very intense person. Augghhh! I had to laugh when I read this line.

    I’m going over to check out that website and look forward to hearing more about this. Happy Tuesday, Patti!


      Oh, thanks, Tess, and glad you found this helpful and especially that it made you laugh. What’s especially funny about it to me (I notice now) is that that particular line came out of nowhere when I was writing — which I guess goes to prove the point exactly, doesn’t it?!

      Happy Tues. to you, too, or probably Weds. by the time you see this… I’ll come visit soon!
      Thanks for coming by.



    I’m with you! Loved this so much: “I wasn’t judging some things as good and others as bad. This means saying yes to the adventure.” This was such an inspiring piece. May we all countless moments of such awe and wonder.


      Hi Sandra,
      Yes, I have to appreciate this non-judgement whenever and wherever I can get it, lol! I’m glad you found it inspiring. I ditto your sentiments about awe and wonder. May we all, indeed. Too great to be missed.
      Thanks for coming by!

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