A Fearful Mind Is a Catalyst for Awakening

Posted on by Sen.

If you notice, it’s not the negative thoughts that are the problem but the “feeling” it generates that causes suffering. Feelings are linked with thoughts because a feeling is generated by whether a thought is in resistance to your life stream or if it’s aligned with it. If a thought is in resistance to your life stream it creates a “bad feeling”, when it’s in alignment it creates a good feeling. Also, when you are free of thoughts you automatically dwell in your natural vibration which is akin to a feeling of calm joy/peace.

When a negative thought has a lot of momentum, it can create “severe” resistance and thus create overwhelming feeling of suffering, as compared to a thought which lacks momentum. When your mind, as a whole, ebbs away in momentum, as you stay as a space of “passive awareness” allowing it to run out of fuel, you will notice that its negative thoughts don’t have the same “punch” any more, they don’t create any intense feelings in you – this allows you to experience your natural vibration of joy in an unhindered manner. It’s like becoming free from a prison created by the mind.

A fearful mind with high momentum creates intense suffering

Some minds are way more prone to fear than other minds owing to their very make-up. Such a mind keeps hinging on fear no matter what the circumstances are, even in relatively pleasant surroundings/life-situations. It will find any reason to fear, sometimes even reasons which lack logic of any form. If you are born with such a mind and when your awareness becomes lost in such a mind, you unconsciously fuel its momentum through identification. A fearful mind with a strong momentum becomes extremely dysfunctional owing to the powerful resistance it creates in your life stream, leading to intense feelings of emotional suffering.

Even in the animal kingdom you will observe that some animals are naturally brave while some are naturally meek/fearful. This is because of the natural make-up of their brain, or rather their body’s genetic make-up as a whole. In the same way, some humans are naturally more fearless, their brain’s make-up allows them to stay free of a lot of fears – they may also be less prone to emotional dependence and would not exhibit over-sensitive behaviors. It’s totally futile to try to change a mind’s natural make-up because it’s hard-wired, like an internal coding – anyone with a fearful mind who has tried to change it into a brave mind knows what a losing battle it is, you can pretend for a while but sooner or later your mind will exhibit its natural make-up.

Is it unfair to be dealt a fearful mind?

It may seem that a fearless brain (or a brain less prone to fear) would be the “ideal” brain to have, because it seems to allow for a more pleasant life experience. But in truth, an unconscious mind always lacks “wisdom” and its fearlessness can lead it to commit acts that may have negative reflections (a fearless mind does not automatically become a “hate free” mind). So it’s not whether a mind is fearful or fearless that makes for a life of well-being, it’s your level of consciousness that matters.

Moreover, diversity is inherent in our physicality, and in the absence of a diversity of minds, and different natural make-ups of the mind, there is no diversity in experience. The very reason for manifesting physicality is for consciousness to have a variety of “experiences” in various forms. So a fearful mind is just one “flavor” of diversity created by the intent of consciousness to experience life in a unique way. A human possessing a fearful mind may find this extremely unfair, and would rather prefer to have been born with a more fearless mind, but such a human would need to realize the potential that his/her mind has to awaken, and also the unique expression, and experience, that it brings forth, especially after awakening.

Also from the absolute perspective, there is no question of fairness or unfairness, because it’s all the “one consciousness” taking different forms – when there is just “one”, who is unfair to whom? If you have a fearful mind, take it as a blessing that allows you to wake up to your true nature in your wholeness, thus embarking on a totally new experience of life.

A human with a fearful mind has a greater chance of awakening

Jesus was implying to this truth when he said – “the meek shall inherit the kingdom of God”. What he meant was a person with a meek mind (or a fearful mind) is who is more likely to let go of it and awaken to his/her truth as the universal being, and thus become privy to their natural vibration of joy. Is it not true that it’s easier to “awaken” from sleep when you are having a nightmare than when you are having a pleasant dream? If Buddha did not have a strongly fearful mind (that got terribly scared when it saw disease and old age), he wouldn’t have gone on to seek enlightenment to be free of the suffering. Some might argue saying that it’s better to have a pleasant dream than to wake up through a night mare – but such a person does not recognize the difference between the experience of being “awakened” and being unconsciously lost in the mind.

A person with a strong mind (a fearless mind) might be lost in his/her mind for a lifetime without ever awakening to their true identity – they may seem to have a good life, but their experience is one of a “sleeping dream”. What would you prefer – a sweet dream while you are lost in sleep or to create a dream in your wakeful state? When you are awake, the experience of life is totally different than when you are asleep – after awakening you will continue to create realities (metaphorically dream realities) but your experience will be totally different than when you were lost in the mind, more over there would be “wisdom” in your movements unlike when you are unconsciously pulled around by the mind. The experience of living life in an awakened manner is totally different from the experience of living life unconsciously.

You can’t change your mind’s natural make-up, but you can change your experience

When you awaken to your truth, your position of reference changes from being identified with the mind to resting as a space of awareness. This causes the mind to lose its power over your vibration. The mind continues to be fearful, but now you are no longer fueling it with your “focused” attention, as you stay as a space of passive awareness. Within a few months the mind no longer has the old intensity to it because it’s no longer getting its fuel from your “attention”. Slowly, and surely, the mind starts losing its momentum until it becomes very subtle and silent – and what starts to operate is the intelligence of the wholeness of your being. Also, when the mind loses its momentum you no longer have any intense feelings in you because there is no strong resistance anymore. As you merge more into your “spaciousness”, you find a permanence in your natural vibration which starts feeling like a calm joy which is undeterred by the mind’s movements as they don’t have much intensity.

When your awareness dis-identifies with the mind it automatically loses its power or intensity, it no longer disturbs your vibration, it no longer touches your being. Also, a balance starts coming into the mind, which allows for a positive expression of all the dimensions present in it. The natural make-up of your mind is retained for a life-time, but in a place of conscious balance it’s never a problem – there are six dimensions in the mind (joy, fear, boredom, hatred, love, sexuality) and every dimension has some positive aspects to contribute. For example, a mind’s whose natural make-up is to have a dominant fear dimension, when in balance allows for the positive aspects of this dimension like sincerity, humility and devotion while being free of imbalance/over-whelming fear identification. Imbalance in fear happens only when one is “unconsciously” lost in it. The mind can have its natural make-up while not being a problem to your being, because now it’s in a balance.

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  1. Suphala

    thanks. Can you pls explain what is means when you tell passive awareness ?

    1. Sen Post author

      Passive awareness is a relaxed state of openness where you are not resisting what arises but you are also not “contracting” on what arises – you just stay open as a field of unconditional awareness, allowing what arises to arise in the mind or as a feeling. Passive awareness connects you with the wisdom of your totality, your wholeness – it’s what I call “silent intelligence” because it brings a healing to any conflict that it touches without requiring any noisy thoughts or arguments. I also use the term “relaxed awareness” or “stay as a space of awareness”, which both indicate the same state of resting in a passive awareness. A negative thought gets fueled with your give it focused attention out of your belief in it or out of your identification with it, so when a negative thought arises you can simply stay as a space of passive awareness and allow it fleet by as clouds fleet through the space of the open sky – this way you will not be fueling the momentum of a negative thought, and slowly this pattern of thought will lose its influence in your vibration, it will lose its intensity and pulling power.

  2. Ken Geraghty

    Sen I really appreciate this sharing of knowledge and it has helped me a great deal lately…..just having an insight to the information> …However I feel I need for the practical tools to deal with these situations when they arise.
    I have chronic PTSD and appear to have developed an anxiety disorder, I feel I am achieving some success as I use this knowledge to dissipate the anxiety when it arises, but really want to tackle it with every weapon I can when it is there…Do you have any advice for me? I am working hard with affirmations, creating positive flow and feel it working
    Thank you for helping to make this world a better place !!

    1. Sen Post author

      You might want to let go of “working hard” on forcing your mind to focus on positivity and move more into staying as a relaxed space of awareness. If you notice, the very drive to push away negative thoughts through forced focus on positive arise from a place of fear. There is a lot of effort and energy expended in resisting the mind’s movement and forcing it to think in a different way, rather the more effective practice (or non-practice) is to just let go of the mind and allow it to run out of momentum. All chronic/obsessive negative thinking of the mind goes on because of the fuel it got from your past attention, all you need to do is allow this fuel to be exhausted by staying as a space of “inattention” or what I call “relaxed awareness”. You can read this post – positive thinking vs fearless awareness to get a sense of the power of staying as an allowing space of awareness instead of struggling with the mind in an effort to change it.

  3. singh

    Sen, first off I think you are doing a great job with this site. I noticed lately I have been battling signs of paranoia. I have no “real” reason to believe that I am in danger of anything, as I lead a simple life and am happily married but I have mild cases of OCD. I have turned to sites like yours and OSHO passages to remain more rooted in awareness and not worry about past or future. But I am finding it harder than just constantly reminding myself to stay in the present and not worry, I wish it was that easy. Lately I blame my past conditioning, that every time I see or hear anything it deceives me. Like I tend to read the news or watch a movie and if its negative I imagine myself in that situation. Having intrusive negative thoughts. Lately I have become paranoid of strangers or people who I once suspected to be innocent to be shady, or up to something. I have this habit of labeling people as suspicious and anytime I run into them I get anxiety and start to get fearful. I have no reason to suspect anyone following me or watching me but what might be someone’s innocent gesture or body language makes me feel as if they are out to get me or I misinterpret them. I don’t like this feeling and its interfering with my daily routine. I am afraid to go places or visit places, because I might run into these people. None of them have threatened me and I know it’s all in my head. As I lead a simple honest life I don’t need to fear or watch my back ,but my mind says otherwise. How can I be an innocent person as I once use to be and stop over analyzing every person I meet or conversation I have?

    1. Sen Post author

      What’s happening to you right now is that your “level of consciousness” is raising, or rather your awareness is becoming more and more strong. It’s like slowly waking up from sleep. Just imagine that for so long you were lost in a dream, asleep, and suddenly someone wakes you up. Initially as you wake up, everything looks uneasy, you want to go back to sleep and go back to the familiar domain of dreaming. But once you are awoken its not possible to go back to sleep again no matter how hard you try, once you are awoken the only path forward is to wake up fully. Sometimes people wake up when they have a slight nightmare, that’s what a fearful mind can do for you – that’s what is meant by the title of this post “a fearful mind is a catalyst for awakening”. When one has a fearful mind, there is no option for awareness except to become free of it because a fearful mind is not a pleasant place to live. Your awareness is waking up from the trance of the mind, and now it can see how terribly fearful the mind really is. The only way forward from here is to “transcend” the mind, or rather to let go of the mind and find your true position as the space of being that you are. You are not the mind, or the ego, these are just thought constructs – who you really are is the space of aware energy that is the source of this mind. This space of energy is already at peace, and its natural vibration is joy, and you can get a taste of what this space really feels like when you start letting go of your mind.

      Don’t try to change the mind, rather just let go of it. Let it make all the noise it wants, let it have fears, and you stay as a space of awareness allowing it all to happen. The more you stay dis-identified with the mind the faster it will dissolve in its momentum. It can be very challenging initially to start letting go of the mind, because for so long you’ve been dwelling completely in a mind identified manner. You can read this post – Awakening, transcendence and return of focus for more insight on how awakening is followed by letting go of the mind’s pull. The path forward from here would be to move more and more towards letting go of the mind rather than try to “solve” it, because the more you try to solve the mind the more your will be embroiled in it. When you let go of the mind, automatically the wisdom of your being starts taking over and its the beginning of a totally new experience of life – it’s an awakened way of living.

  4. singh

    thank you so much sen 🙂

  5. singh

    so in conclusion, if i do read negavitve news or come across the same strange people etec i should just acknoledge it but not dwell over it? like i can accept that this is the case and yes this is true but don’t be identifying it, just ignore it? and slowly it will disappear, am in on the right track?

    1. Sen Post author

      That’s right, but don’t make any “effort” at ignoring the mind because that would be like resisting the mind’s movement, rather just stay as a space of passive awareness and let the mind be. If you stay this way, the mind will slowly start running out of momentum and intensity as it’s no longer getting the “fuel” of attention from you. The mind only gains power through your focused attention to it, if you stay as a space of passive awareness the mind will automatically dwindle in momentum and ebb away in intensity. You will need to be a little patient as the momentum of the mind dies away, initially the mind might even get very agitated when you don’t feed it with “attention” and it can make more noise, just a like a baby makes noise for attention. You will need to continue staying as a space of passive awareness even when the mind argues against it, with time (usually within a few months) you will see the momentum/intensity of your mind ebbing away steadily and the peace/wisdom of your being coming into the foreground.

  6. singh

    so when you say the mind argues against passive awareness, does that mean as i stay in passive awareness initially the mind will say (you must dwell over this thought and re-assure yourself, so internal chatter will begin and i will look for rituals and routines to make the feelings go away? is that what mind arguing means? like it won’t allow me to stay in passive awareness and will insist that NO a real danger does exist and do somethign about it, rather than remaining passive awarness?

    1. Sen Post author

      That’s right, as you stay in the space of passive awareness the mind will try to pull your attention and get you to focus on its fear-based thoughts. If you do get pulled in initially, it’s fine but keep moving more and more towards gaining a stability in staying as a space of passive awareness until the mind’s momentum ebbs away. Once the mind’s momentum ebbs away it won’t be able to influence your consciousness with its resistance patterns.

  7. Agnès

    Thank you so much, Sen. I have just stumbled on your writings & this site tonight, after tearfully typing ‘obsessive thinking stop’ into Google. It’s been a terrifying year battling breast cancer alone, far from friends & family. Treatment side effects have undone 15 years of progress made against the far more serious illness that almost took my life 20 years ago. Here, alone on Thanksgiving night, I find my ‘monkey mind’ ceaselessly replaying–and trying to respond to–a shockingly negative interaction from a once-trusted doctor a few days ago. It feels like 20 years of relentlessly trying to overcome insurmountable obstacles, in part by cultivating a positive attitude, is slipping away.

    I keep reaching out for help–especially with the mental & emotional distress–and find nothing there. I even signed up for a Mindfulness class through the oncology department. The teacher lectures at us rather than listening to us, and insists on a ‘my way or the highway’ approach to the practice. Which feels condescending, judgmental and frankly mean, considering all of us are experiencing treatment-related cognitive impairments.

    I feel reassured, just from the few pieces of yours that I have read tonight, that I can begin to calm my fearful, worried, overwhelmed mind. I grew up in a culture where I was used to being surrounded by loved ones all the time, so I always had laughter & hugs & friendly conversation–not to mention the stunning natural environment–to counterbalance my mind’s nature. I look forward to reading and absorbing your thoughts, so I can manage–I hope–to achieve a similiar result here in this lonely, cold, isolated place. Peace & blessings to you.

    1. Sen Post author

      All “techniques” that comes from a place of “force” are means of applying “control” on the mind’s natural movement, and hence they just become forms of suppression. All dysfunctions, including chronic bodily diseases, stems out of suppression or resistance to the natural flow of life in our physical form. The more allowing we become of our natural flow, the less resistance is present in us and the more well-being and wellness that flows into our reality. Your life-stream is constantly moving in the direction of manifesting well-being, because its very movement is generated out of your desires, and hence if you just let go of the patterns of inner resistance (created through “identification” with thoughts of fear, lack & hate, which is basically the structure of the negative ego). The more you let go of your identification with the negative ego, the more you become open to the wisdom of life and allowing of the flow of well-being and healing into your physicality.

      Essentially, when you start relaxing into the space of open awareness what comes up initially are the suppressed energies in the form of intense emotions or past thoughts. As the light of awareness penetrates your being, it touches all the “dark areas” that are suppressed because your mind is afraid of face it. Just allow all these suppressed energies to be touched, so that they can be “transmuted” or transformed in through intelligence of your wholeness. Just allow whatever arises, and stay relaxed as an open space – as these suppressed energies are released you will automatically sense a healing taking shape in your body and your external reality.

    2. Kat


      I’m having my own challenges as well. Let me know if you’d like to contact me/


  8. singh

    sen how does one distinguish between a real threat, and one made up in the mind? i guess common sense. like the old saying goes, worrying is like walking around with umbrella waiting for it to rain” worry when it rains, not before. so if there is a real threat like a robber breaking in i guess its time not too remain passive awareness but act as its a real threat? if one stays in passive awareness all the time will they miss on a opportunity of a real or potential threat?


    1. Sen Post author

      “Awareness” is not a lazy state, it’s a conscious state of being. To stay as a awareness of the “mind” and not be pulled into its negativity requires a high level of consciousness, which grow steadily in you as you stay more and more in the space of awareness. Rest assured that the life force in you has the wisdom to take the right action when it required, and stay at rest when its not required – when you are lost in the mind, there is a high proablity that you would end up taking a lot of unnessecary and counterproductive actions out of fear. In the state of awareness there is a wisdom that operates in your life, that allows for right actions to be inspired in you at the right time. To stay as “passive awareness” is not the same as going into a “sluggish state” of non-action. Passive awareness of the mind refers to the state of staying as a field of open awareness by not being pulled into the negative momentum of the mind, and thus allowing its negativity to ebb away in force. As long as there is a strong negative momentum in the mind, you will constantly stand in resistance to the flow of well-being inherent to your life stream.

      The pointer to stay as a passive awareness is to allow the power of awareness to grow within you as you stay “detached” from the negative momentum of the fear-based mind. As this awareness grows in power, you will gain stability in your being and will no longer feel a prisoner to your mind but would be able to allow your natural potential to unfold with ease, plus you will move through a wisdom that automatically comes in this state of awareness. This awareness roots you to the intelligence of totality, and it makes available the energy required to take the right actions at the right time as and when required. The fearful ego has a feeling that it’s controlling life and it’s fearful thinking is needed to protect itself, but this negative ego is basically only standing in resistance to the flow of well-being and all it does is create friction in your life. Majority of your suffering is unnecessarily created through the psychological fears of the negative ego. Stay as a field of awareness and allow the intensity of the negative ego structure to fade away, rest assured that right actions, rooted in wisdom, will be taken in this place of awareness in an effortless manner or in a flow.

  9. singh

    thank you

  10. luka

    Hey Sen,

    So this passive awareness you always talk about, is this a difficult thing to do or should it be easy? I find that when negative thoughts arise, it’s hard to even notice them because my mind is so flooded with other thoughts. It’s like they kind of get lost in a sea of other thoughts.I guess this is what it means to live unconciously. So when you say to stay in a place of passive awareness, wouldn’t that be a difficult thing to do for someone who is extremely identified with the mind? Also, I have tried to stay aware in the moment, and like you have said, it does cause me to feel very unatural. I find it a very hard thing to do!

    1. Sen Post author

      You’ve started becoming “aware” of the mind, so basically you’ve start becoming conscious, hence the process of awakening has begun in you. This awareness will keep increasing on a daily basis, and you may feel inspired towards some practice like staying as a “passive awareness” of the mind. If you don’t feel inspired to do this, it’s best that you don’t do it. It’s just a practice that can instigate the awakening, once you awaken you can simply follow your own inspiration and not follow any “practices”. As you rightly mentioned it feels “unnatural” to do practices, and the only purpose of any practice is to help you awaken from the mind. Once you do awaken, as is your case, it’s upto you to follow your own inner inspiration. From here on the process will unfold in a manner that allows your awareness to keep becoming stronger until it reaches “stability”. Once your awareness reaches stability you will be able to dissolve the negative patterns in mind with ease because you are no longer pulled in by it. It takes time for the awareness to become stable, and right now of course it’s in a “baby” stage in you. Within an couple of months you will notice a much stronger stability in your awareness, in that you will not feel so easily pulled in by the mind.

  11. Treeter

    Hi Sen I’m rereading many of your post for reinforcement on my journey to enlightenment. Over the past few weeks I have experienced opportunities of not listening to my fear based mind. Not being totally successful from my stand point however i do feel more stable for sure. Ex. one day outside in my neighborhood someone was popping off a shot gun every 30 min consistently for over two hours. My mind was fearful and thinks I should figure this out and call the cops? Then I just want to be in passive awareness and not worry about it. I’m still getting symptoms of stress, tension, rapid heart jumps each time I hear a bang whitch is normal I’m sure? However I toil with the whole law of attraction concept. Is this just a reflection of what’s going on inside of me or just a coincidence? Should I call the authorities or just use the opportunity to practice allowing and let it go come what may? I guess my point is how involved to I really want to be in a negative situation? If I have a choice that’s one thing but when I don’t how does passive awareness/life stream help? Can it really make a real situation change for the better? And would if it changes for the worst how should I view it then?

    1. Sen Post author

      Treeter, there is no standard definition of what a “right action” is, because it changes with the need of the situation. When you are dominated by fear, you have the capacity to get in sync with your inner guidance, wisdom and instinct about the situation thus allowing you to move into an action without confusion. It’s normal to feel what you are feeling right now, because you are in the middle of the process of letting go of the pull of mind’s negativity, soon you will reach a point of stability where you are not at the mercy of the mind’s fears but have a space that allows you to stay connected with wisdom. It’s possible that if you were more grounded in stability you would’ve cautiously checked out who was firing the shot gun and possibly someone was just shooting clay in their backyard – but since you were in the grip of fear, plus you were “trying” to stay calm, hence you did not feel aligned with the natural flow of action. It’s best to not “over analyse” what you should or should not have done, now that its past.

      Challenges can always arise, but it’s your capacity to deal smoothly with them that determines how stable you are within – when your mind has a high momentum, it can easily get overwhelmed and block your reception of wisdom or inner guidance in that moment.

  12. Treeter

    Thnak you well understood. I did choose to call the authorities and my mind was relieved when they thanked me for the call and said there was “swat training” being conducted near by! So my lesson never assume the negative? Next time moving into action without confusion should be easier. And I will look forwarto being in sync with my inner guidence.

  13. Star

    Hi Sen,

    I would like to clarify a statement – “A mind which is more prone to fear will retain its natural make-up till its death”.

    I’m just wondering, is it absolutely true? From personal experience, fear is dissolved when it is fully understood. Is it not possible to shift the inclination of the mind from fearful to less fearful?

    I find your writings enlightening by the way. Much gratitude for sharing your wisdom with the world.

    1. Sen Post author

      The natural make-up of your mind is retained for a life-time, but in a place of conscious balance it’s never a problem – there are six dimensions in the mind (joy, fear, boredom, hatred, love, sexuality) and every dimension has some positive aspects to contribute. For example, a mind’s whose natural make-up is to have a dominant fear dimension, when in balance allows for the positive aspects of this dimension like sincerity, humility and devotion while being free of imbalance/over-whelming fear identification. Imbalance in fear happens only when one is “unconsciously” lost in it. As you mentioned fear is dissolved when fully understood, or in other words when “consciously” seen through. So the mind can have its natural make-up while not being a problem to your being, because now it’s in a balance.

      But I will need to re-word this piece, as I can see it can give a wrong meaning. Thanks for bringing it to my attention.

  14. Burizu

    You give very good teaching. Very good good. Keep up good work!

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