Ocean of Dharma

Step One: Look at Fear

As a warrior proceeds on the path, he or she may go through phases of intense fear. Frequently, such fear comes out of nowhere. It just happens; it just hits you. It may cause you to question everything in yourself: everything you have studied, everything you have learned and understood, as well as your general life situation. . . . Fear arises in this way many times on the warrior’s path. It is a hallmark of your progress on the path. Just as you are about to give birth to further confidence, that breakthrough is preceded by a sense of utter fear.When this occurs in your life, you should examine the nature of fear. This is not based on asking logical questions about fear: “Why am I afraid?” It is simply looking at the state of fear or panic that is taking place in you. Just look at it.

From “The Other Side of Fear, ” pages 107 to 108, in Smile at Fear: Awakening the Heart of Bravery.