Two events have recently given me reason to think on the topic of personal truth, fear, honesty, and acceptance.
To start, a friend and I have been discussing the tumultuous time of their 'coming out' to family, friends, and co-workers. What I've personally received from these discussions is the realization that there is an immensely profound sense of relief and release which comes from speaking a deeply held fear aloud. Furthermore, accepting that fear and fully accepting yourself is of huge importance to the understanding of who you are and how you live your life.
Second, the point of religion has come up twice recently; once in a book and again while speaking with my Mum. In the book, every time the author mentioned religion I noticed that I would tense up and there was a sense of hot belligerence that would wash over me. My thoughts in those moments were that religion shouldn't have a place in this particular book, or anywhere in my journey to further self discovery. It made me doubt the validity of every word I'd read so far and I wanted to put the book down. Instead, because I'm trying to challenge myself, I forced my way through those few instances, that is until I hit upon an entire chapter about religion. I read some of it, but my engine was too fired up to continue objectively.
In the conversation with my Mum I realized what it was about religion that has always made me uncomfortable. Surprisingly, it's linked directly to fear. Basically, at some early point in my life I noticed that people who very steadfastly believe in one thing will be persecuted outright by people who believe the opposite. Worse still is that people who say they hold no belief are accosted by those who do! Essentially, you're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't. What I realized is that there is something in the idea of being persecuted, for whatever bloody reason, which has created a ball of fear in me.
What I divined (pun intended) from these incidences is that the relief my friend experienced in speaking their truth essentially nullified the fear involved with hiding that essential truth about who they are. And my realization of the reason why religion makes me all prickly brought about a minor sense of release. Further, as I feel that I am dogged by fear from all quarters, could it be that simply accepting my truth, whatever it is, would extinguish the very fears with which I've battled for so long?
So how does one get past fear to truth then? I've observed that many of the people whom I would say are confident seem to have accepted their lot in life and it's as if that acceptance has pulled back the proverbial curtain on the fear in their lives, which then allows them to experience the release in expressing their truth, whatever it may be.
Therefore, if I can learn what truth I need to face, somehow accept it and further face the infinitude of potential negative and positive outcomes of that acceptance, I will have released myself from the shroud of fear which has dogged my existence for these nearly three decades. ...Right?
For the moment it seems as though my latent fear of being persecuted may be the truth I need to face up to. There is much fear in the idea of being persecuted, or of being different, as it seem as though there are infinite things to be persecuted for. With these discoveries, it feels like I'm near to moving beyond the cage of fear I've gotten myself into all those years ago.
I need to do more work in this vein, as I feel so damned close to something new! The challenge, however, once I'm into that new territory, will be to remain there and no longer be bogged down by the past and those empty fears.
Challenge accepted ;)