BENGALURU: There are various forms of fear, neurotic as well as sane, rational fears. If fear can ever be rational or sane. But most of us apparently are neurotically afraid of both the past, of today and of tomorrow; the things that one has done in the past or the ill health that one has had in the past with all its pain and agony and not wanting it repeated and is one afraid of that, tomorrow. One is afraid of time, growing old, getting senile, depending on another.
So there is fear of time, fear of the past and of the future. And this fear of loneliness, of death, of public opinion, of not conforming, not being able to succeed, not being able to fulfil, not being somebody in this stupid world, and so on. And now one is afraid of the draft, the conscription. And there are so many fears, not only conscious fears, fears that one is aware of, but also there are fears deep down, undiscovered, unexplored, in the deep recesses of one’s own mind.
So the question is, not only how to deal with the conscious fears as well as those that are hidden, the fear of time, that is yesterday, of the things that one has done, the repetition of that misery, of tomorrow, the uncertainty, the insecurity, both psychological as well as physical. And there are the fears of great loneliness and the escape from that loneliness. Surely fear is a movement away from ‘what is’, the flight, the escape, the avoidance of actually ‘what is’, the movement, the flight away brings about fear. That is, when there is comparison of any kind, it breeds fear – comparing oneself with another whom you think is greater or wiser, nobler etc., etc. And the comparison of what you are with what you should be.
So fear is a movement away from the actual, the ‘what is’, the movement, not the object from which you escape. And fear comes about through comparison. And there is the fear, deeply hidden in oneself, of which one is not aware. So that these problems are all very complex. And none of these problems of fear can be resolved through will, saying to oneself, I will not be afraid. An act of will has no meaning. I hope you are following all this - it isn’t a game I am playing with you, nor you playing a game with me.
We are considering very serious problems and therefore you have to give your attention to it. And you cannot give attention if you are interpreting or translating or comparing what is being said with what you already know – you have to listen. And the art of listening one has to learn, because one doesn’t listen at all, one is always comparing, evaluating, judging, denying. Therefore you prevent yourself from actually listening. To listen so completely to another implies that you give your whole attention – it doesn’t mean you agree or disagree, because there is no agreement or disagreement when we are exploring together. Only the microscope through which you look may be dull, may not be clear. So if you have a precision instrument then what you see, is what another will also see. Therefore there is no question of agreement or disagreement or denial.