The first step out of fear is: I am responsible for fear!
It is all very well to say that we choose between love and fear but what if we don’t see ourselves as a chooser?
It may not be helpful to tell someone “you can decide to be happy!” when they don’t believe that they decided to be unhappy in the first place. They think someone or something made them unhappy.
There is great resistance to seeing yourself as a chooser and I will try and explain why.
As the chooser or decider you are the cause of what happens because when you choose fear you believe in it, it becomes your identity and it becomes real for you. You then experience others as fearful because you shift the cause of fear onto them. You don’t want to be responsible for choosing fear and so it seems the solution is to blame others or our body.
To summarise: We are all responsible for choosing fear but then we try and get rid of that responsibility. The consequence is that we then see ourselves as being at the mercy of forces we can’t control. We are the victim of circumstances that don’t care about us.
The answer is obvious – we need to recognise we are responsible for choosing fear and then choose love instead. Yet then process is difficult. The closer we get to accepting we are a chooser the more fear we experience because we have judgements about what sort of person would choose fear in the first place. Also we have identified with the fear we have chosen and we don’t want to completely give up our identity even if it is a miserable one!
Fear tells us that we are a rotten evil, horrible chooser rather than a loving one. So we need the help of a miracle to get us out of the cycle of fear.
Does the miracle start by trying to convince us that we are loving rather than sinful? No. The miracle starts by looking at the effects of our choice for fear and transforming them.
The effects of fear in the section in Chapter 28 on “Reversing Effect and Cause” are: enemies that we hate, sick body, pain, suffering and death.
The miracle transforms these effects. Enemies are transformed into friends with merciful intent. A sick body becomes healed and we experience there is no one and nothing to fear.
But the Miracle only changes the effects of fear to make it easier for us to recognise we are a chooser. When we see the effects of our choice for fear transformed then is easier to accept that we are responsible for choosing fear. If the effects of a wrong choice are cancelled out then the choice for fear is no longer frightening. It’s no longer a choice that causes anything bad or terrible to happen.
One reason why we are convinced that other people are to blame, that life and then death is fearful and our health is an issue is that it keeps our choice for fear in place and shift responsibility away from us.
So the first step the miracle does is really two things at once. We are reminded we are a chooser and responsible, and we can accept the power of our mind to choose because the results of our choice for fear have been transformed. We are happy to accept that we are responsible choosers because the consequences of that big horrible choice we made for fear have been transformed into something lovely.
It’s easy when we let the miracle get on with transforming our lives and reminding us we are a powerful being who can really only make loving choices. Then we are able to be guided to take the next step on the ladder home.
“The miracle returns the cause of fear to you who made it. But it also shows
that, having no effects, it is not cause … where effects are gone, there is no cause.” T-28.II.11:1-3