Fear is a Universal Experience

“Fear is a universal experience. Even the smallest insect feels it. We wade in tidal pools and put our finger near the soft, open bodies of sea anemones and they close up. Everything spontaneously does that. It’s not a terrible thing that we feel fear when faced with the unknown. It is part of being alive, something we all share. We react against the possibility of loneliness, of death, of not having anything to hold onto. Fear is a natural reaction to moving closer to the truth.”
….

“So the next time you encounter fear, consider yourself lucky. This is where the courage comes in. Usually we think brave people have no fear. The truth is that they are intimate with fear. When I was first married, my husband said I was one of the bravest people he knew. When I asked him why, he said because I was a complete coward but went ahead and did things anyhow.”

-Pema Chodron, from the chapter Intimacy with Fear in When Things Fall Apart

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