Working With Fear

by Judy Vogel

David Glaser and I have been exploring various approaches to keeping our spirits healthy and positive during these months of Covid 19. Particularly powerful has been our daily reading of Rabbi Shefa Gold’s sermon on dealing with fear. Each morning when we awaken and before getting out of bed, we snuggle down and David reads her powerful words — slowly. Sometimes we talk about the ideas; often we pause quietly to soak up her wisdom. We find that different ideas resonate on different days. Then we get up, make the bed, and move into our day strengthened

Working With Fear
By Rabbi Shefa Gold

The general consensus and our deep conditioning tell us that it is our fear that will keep us safe. … that if we know all the horrible things that might happen, we’ll be better able to deal with them … that our fear will keep us vigilant against danger… that expecting the worst will help us guard against disaster. 

What if this consensus is totally wrong? What if the truth is that all fear is ultimately toxic, and that it prevents us from truly accessing the deepest wisdom and the greatest love? Fear (that is sustained and not just a momentary startle) raises the level of stress hormones, lowers immunity, sends us to our reptile brain, shuts down our connection to the higher brain functions like empathy, understanding, intuition and love. Fear separates us and blinds us to the miracle of our interconnectivity. Fear shuts down the heart, keeping it from receiving the blessings of this precious moment…

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