5 Ramadan 2018: Fear

The only thing that we have to fear is fear itself – Franklin D. Roosevelt

I don’t believe there was a single ramadan, in Ramadan Living’s history, where I did not dedicate a post to fear. I don’t do it because I plan it that way, I do it because it always comes up, directly or indirectly, and I am not surprised.

Fear can be legitimate. Without fear, we don’t know how to make wise choices in protecting ourselves, our rights, our safety, our families and loved ones. However, fear can also be at the root of why we don’t embrace acceptance often based on an illegitimate fear of the future.

It is illegitimate because it is often negative and perceived to be done onto us in the future and not within our control. As a scholar once said, the fear of disease, is a worse disease. The fear of poverty, is poverty in itself. The fear of what people could do to you is far greater than what they can possibly do. The fear of death, is death itself.

This illegitimate fear robs us of happiness and acceptance of where we are today. This illegitimate fear robs us of the opportunity to consciously take steps and make practical decisions protecting ourselves from the negatives that might materialise if these things do happen in the future, i.e. a legitimate fear. More importantly, these illegitimate fears prevent us from embracing opportunities that come our way while we are focused on things that may or may not happen.

A saying I always liked, “we shall cross that bridge when we get there” … may god give us the ability to recognise illegitimate fears and be strong when we approach “that bridge”.

For now … just breathe.

Photo by Benjamin on Unsplash