If you quit feeding your beast, it will die. What’s the beast in your life? Fear, anger, sorrow, jealousy, anxiety, grief, depression. I could go on, but it comes down to fear in one form or another. It’s not only in your thoughts, it’s in your blood, it’s in your nervous system. We’re wired with fear, and if it’s fed, it kills us.
It’s a curse, passed on from generation to generation. We try to calm its ragged edges with alcohol, drugs, food, or relationships, but in the words of the Eagles’ song, “They stab it with their steely knives, but they just can’t kill the beast.”
This beast ruins the lives of those who feed it – the raging parent, the withdrawn and brooding child, the jealous lover, the resentful spouse, the conquering army. All of this is the beast of fear feeding on wounds that won’t heal.
The only antidote to the fear that surrounds us is not-fear. Some call it love. I’m not sure what love is, but I know what not-fear is. It’s well-being, it’s deep breath, it’s a wide open sky, it’s a bright and refreshed world each day we wake.
Courage isn’t the antidote. Courage is the ability, usually brief, to behave in a healthy, caring manner even while surrounded by and encompassed in fear. The antidote is not-fear, and we find this when we quit feeding the beast, for it feeds on us. We believe we will die if we’re separated from the beast, when it reality, it’s killing us.
We learn to quit feeding the beast by going within. When we go within, we go outside ourselves and find a world free from the beast, larger than the beast, a world in which the beast has never existed and never can exist. It’s not an escape, it’s a coming home.