On Anxiety

What do you see when you look in the mirror? What about in the eyes of a stranger?

Envy?

Anger?

Disappointment?

Desperation?

Happiness?

Anxiety?

Anything at all?

To share one’s sorrows, fears and anxieties – the cathartic experience that relieves one’s burden is truly magnificent.

When a storm is brewing inside us we become oblivious to the struggles of others – even those of our closest friends and family. The struggle, however, does not simply dissappear after the release of pent-up emotions. The inner reservoir of dispair is again begging to be filled.

The voice inside our head, a radar operator on the lookout for blips of all eventual potentialities, try as we might to turn it off, refuses to turn off.

To have someone to confide in, an opportunity to unload the burden that one carries is a rare blessing. In sharing our anxieties we are not always looking for a solution to our troubles. In sharing we find relief for the strain of the yoke that life has fastened around our neck. Some, not all, come to realize that the yoke is a self imposed burden. Others carry the weight proudly.

Straining under the weight of the burder we fail to notice the struggle in the eyes of our brothers and sisters. We fail to see their yoke. They, just as you, are struggling with anxieties, fears and insecurities.

To be continued…

Struggle is mandatory. Suffering is optional.

Struggle is mandatory. Suffering is optional.

You have get uncomfortable. You have to be uncomfortable. You will be uncomfortable.

To live is to not want to suffer. To live is to suffer. You will suffer.

Control what is in your hands and leave the rest to faith. We are not meant to foresee all the variables and possibilities. Why stress?

Responsibility – here is an interesting word – nagging discomfort due to thinking that you can control what happens to a particular thing. Thus, discomfort = responsibility.

Comfort is momentary. We bounce around, wall to wall, like a pinball, seeking that high score of comfort. No chance.

Thus, if you are alive then be at peace with being uncomfortable. Know that such discomforting thoughts are not optional. Why stress?

School = discomfort

Bills = discomfort

Life = struggle

If life is struggle then struggle is life. That is where you find the meaning for your existence. In running away from struggle your are running away from yourself.

You find yourself through struggle.

A sword will never be forged if the metal does not experience the pain of being hit by the blacksmith’s hammer.

Your happiness is elevated by the pain you’ve been through. Your suffering makes you appreciate the happiness and beauty with greater intensity.

 

To desire is not freedom.
To want is not freedom.
To crave is not freedom.

Where is freedom?

It is in the negation of desire, want and craving. To desperately seek something is to be possessed by it. If one desires then certainly one will languish if unable to satisfy the craving. It’s not outside the real of possibility to desire a thing but never be able to acquire it. Eternal misery, is it not?

What is the remedy then? Realize that desire is prison. Realize that life is desire. Cravings that are satiated one moment will undoubtedly return. Thus, to crave things is to be indefinitely miserable.

Life is like a boat-ride across a river that one navigates on a small raft. With limited space on your ship you have to be mindful of what is useful and what is excess. Keep your baggage light for fear of risking taking on too much baggage to cause your raft to sink. Necessity over excess.

Freedom is not achieved
by satisfying desire,
but by eliminating it.
– Epictetus

Freedom is not achieved by satisfying desire… – Epictetus

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​Remember, it is not enough to be hit or insulted to be harmed, you must believe that you are being harmed. If someone succeeds in provoking you, realize that your mind is complicit in the provocation. Whichis whyit is essential that wenot respond impulsively to impressions; take a moment before reacting, and you will find it is easier to maintain control.

The more you cut down on mistakes, the greater your chance of winning is. – Bob Knight


Bob Knight

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Rabindranath Tagore, Gitanjali, 1

Thou hast made me endless, such is thy pleasure. This frail vessel thou emptiest again and again, and fillest it ever with fresh life.

This little flute of a reed thou hast carried over hills and dales, and hast breathed through it melodies eternally new.

At the immortal touch of thy hands my little heart loses its limits in joy and gives birth to utterance ineffable.

Thy infinite gifts come to me only on these very small hands of mine. Ages pass, and still thou pourest, and still there is room to fill.

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