What is Fear?

Krishnamurti: “Look sir, I’m afraid of various things - public opinion, what you might say to me, I’m afraid of death, the unknown, I’m afraid of losing my job, I’m afraid that next year you won’t all turn up, I’m afraid that I might get ill - I’ve got dozens of fears. I’m as good as you at explaining why fear comes into being. I want to find out how to be free of it, how to go beyond it. That’s all my concern, I have no other concern. I don’t want explanations, I don’t want a verbal description of my fears, and I see how dreadful, how calamitous, how destructive fear is. Now I’m asking myself, how is it possible to go beyond it - that’s my whole concern, you understand - that’s all I’m interested in. I’m giving my total attention to it, because it’s a crisis in my life, because I see how it perverts every activity, how neurotic I become, how in comparison with somebody I further this fear. So my concern, my interest, is, I’m asking, can I, can the mind, this mind, be totally free of fear and whenever fear arises in the future to meet it totally? You understand? That’s all I’m concerned about and nothing else. Are you?”

Public Discussion 3 Saanen, Switzerland - 04 August 1972

Surely the question is not “What is fear?” The question is “Can the mind be totally free of fear?” And also "“Whenever fear arises in the future to meet it totally?”

To me these seem to be much bigger questions and deserving of a much bigger effort.

Its good to be clear about what we mean. Are you implying that we all know what fear is? So no need to ask the question?

I would agree that we all know what its like to be afraid. Do we agree that it is my purpose to be afraid?

The bigger questions might be made up of smaller questions.

Says a much bigger dissembler…

As K says, “I’m as good as you at explaining why fear comes into being.”

Bigger than you, do you mean? Maybe I am off-track here.

Yes. K talks about state that is not name, not naming, not thought.
If the feeling arises and we already name it as something, we are caught in the past. Definition, recognition all being the past. Meeting something being direct and not to do with naming. So there is a limitation of discussion. We can define different types of fears but that doesn’t help. That is still in the domain in which fear continues as thought. Can there be a domain in which experiencer as thought is absent. If there is no experiencer, there is no experience of something. The something being name, the experiencer being name, being thought.

This rarely happens, if it ever does.

We are so deeply conditioned by what we think we know, our experience is mostly repetition of our usual comforting/discomforting reactions. We’re less open and receptive to what we don’t know and can’t name than to what we think we know.

But the question is: can there be a domain in which there is no experiencer? To meet fear without it being the experience of meeting fear.

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