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Developing Courage

Courage is having the strength to see reality for what it is rather than what we fear or hope it to be.

Do you remember when you were a kid and you feared the supposed monster in your closet? How you would tuck into the sheets and become completely paralyzed, unable to move or turn on the lights.

This childish example may sound like a fantasy, but it's still applicable in our lives.

I will share an example of my own.

Currently, I am dealing with chronic pain, which is uncomfortable and not ideal. However, the pain itself is bearable. What is unbearable is when my mind begins to project onto it. For example, "What if this gets worse?" Or, "Please, I need it to get better". When unchecked, this necrosis can spiral to the point where I feel entirely suffocated.

Practicing courage at that moment would be having the guts to look and see if what was happening in my mind was real. If I did, I would understand that this made-up projection is no more real than the monster in my closet when I was little.

This practice is called The Lions Roar in Tibetan Buddhism. My teacher describes it as "Looking back at your fear" or "Hunting the haunt."

It takes substantial guts, especially when you feel overcome with fear.

However, when you practice this, something starts to take place: pride.

I don't mean pride in a vain sense. I mean pride like a lion's pride. The lion walks proudly, embodies their strength, and isn't afraid of their power.

We can extinguish fear with the light of our consciousness and take back our minds as ours.

I challenge you this week in a moment of "what if" to practice courage. Look boldly at your mind and differentiate reality from non-reality. Be stern and realize it is your right to do so.

Let me know how it goes.

Until next time, love,



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