Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Our Fears Are Abnormal, So Says Joseph Murphy

Groggy? Yes. Sleepy? Yes. Go to work? Yes. I don’t feel like it. I guess to be sick is a blessing given by God. And I had the blessing of God for a week, when I was laid down with unforeseen fear of a possibility of “hernia” which turned out to be “edema,” something a lot less serious. So I relaxed at home, wrote something, edited a pile of manuscripts that were crying for attention, caught up on some work and generally got in the way of my wife and son. It can be fun in the first few days, but can be traumatic after that. I wonder what retired people do. They downhill fast after superannuating, I guess.

It’s hot and the first day of work after a hiatus; yesterday was terrible and I was beset with the worst fears. Joseph Murphy, the self-help guru, who I am reading now says, “Normal fear is good. You hear an automobile coming down the road toward you and you step aside to survive. The momentary fear of being run over is overcome by your action.

“All the other fears are abnormal. They are caused by particular experiences or were passed along to you by parents, relatives, teachers, and others who influenced your early years.”

How true! From our childhood our parents’ fears have been drilled into us. My parents weren’t very educated and they had the superstitions and fears of the people of a small village of Kerala – which is steeped in superstition and sorcery of all kinds. I find it difficult, sometimes, to get rid of these fears.

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