There is nothing to be afraid of… Is there?

What are you afraid of?

Dear fellow human,

I am going to tell you the most important thing I have ever learned:

There is nothing to be afraid of.

Whenever you think you are afraid, you label physical sensations, e.g. tingling or tension with your mind. That’s all there is. Fear is not real. It only exists in your own mind. It is only real to the extend you believe it is.

You see, it is impossible to point out fear. It is not tangible, not visible.

Legions of psychologists spent there time researching fear. That does not help much. The only thing you need to know is that fear is only a word, a mind label, for bodily sensations. Nothing more.

The bodily sensation comes first, the mind label comes second.

The sensation is real, the mind label is a story.

Whenever you think you are afraid and believe in your story about fear, remember that this is not true. It is real, you make it that, but not true and not your only choice.

So how to deal with fear?

There is nothing to deal with. Dealing with fear, or trying to deal with fear, is like moving your finger on a map and thinking you are traveling.

When you notice fearful thoughts, shift your attention from the map, where fear lives, to the territory, where sensations and experience live. Feel the underlying sensations and stick with it for a while.

I imagine this is the key to leading the life you want; a life of your own design.

I often stay on the map and forget about the territory myself. The map is a cozy place to be and makes human life easier. Nothing unforgivably wrong with that, I guess.

However, I commit to not believe in the content of my own map.

Much love from San Diego,

Marvin Schulz

P.S. I wrote this as a letter to my close friends a few weeks ago and want to share it here.

P.S.S. I still believe in my story of fear. I often use the idea of fear as an excuse to not act. Though I “know” that fear does not exist (whenever I sit in the comforts of my home) I still overwhelm myself with fearful thoughts at times.

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