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Yoga in Practice - Yogic Solutions for Fear

Paul M. Jerard Jr.
Jan 23, 2008
Yoga often helps us to carefully examine logical and illogical mind chatter. Fear can be caused by either, logical or illogical, thoughts. Sorting out our fears, and categorizing them, will give us a rational view of, an often, irrational emotion.

Logical thoughts, which strike fear into us, have been learned over time, such as: Putting our hands into a fire. We have all learned to respect extreme heat, because of our life experiences, but this is a logical reaction.

Illogical thoughts, such as phobias and unreasonable fears, which we perceive to be real, can program us for failure, or cause a state of panic. The reaction to phobias and unreasonable fears can raise the pulse rate, shorten the breath, increase perspiration, result in trembling, and in extreme cases, cause death.

If someone you know is suffering, as mentioned above, from phobias, counseling should be sought. Reactions to phobias can become an automatic conditioned response. A person who suffers with extreme reactions to phobias may no longer be able to control his or her response to it. This is why counseling will be so helpful.

In the case of Yoga being prescribed for phobias, it will help, but a doctor, therapist, or counselor, should be working in conjunction with Yoga practice. If a Yoga teacher has one of these qualifications, everything should be fine. If this is not the case, two individuals may be needed. Self-prescribing, in the case of extreme reactions to phobias, is definitely not recommended.

Yoga therapy for phobias consists of pranayama, mantra, asana, meditation, and more. The mind can be re-programmed for success, but face-to-face Yoga guidance, and professional counseling, should be sought.

Let's look at a common fear that most of us take for granted, which might be a phobia in some, but leaves its traces in many of our personalities. We might call it "fear of rejection." This is a fear we learned as children. We wanted to be accepted by our peers, give the right answer to our teacher, or make our parents proud of us.

For one reason, or another, we discovered disapproval. We buried it in our personality, and now we hesitate to take chances. We learn to "play it safe" and avoid taking risks for fear of rejection. This one fear has held back many creative personalities. Some artists stop producing beautiful pieces, because they imagine disapproval or listen to the wrong feedback.

How can Yoga help? All forms of Yoga bring about a state of inner tranquility. Within Jnana Yoga, the practitioner learns to see reality. One reality, which we should all learn at a younger age, is to see the truth. You cannot base the truth on the opinion of one person or even one country.

The truth is felt deep within your heart. In the case of an artist: If an artist is producing pieces for his, or her, own gratification, and it is appreciated by a small group, then this is a form of therapy for the artist. He or she is doing no harm to anyone, and does not need the approval of everyone.

One more truth to realize: You will not receive the approval of everyone you meet, but do not suppress the Albert Einstein, or Leonardo da Vinci, within, because of it.

Adults see far too much bad news in the newspapers and on television. As a result, it programs us to consider failure first. We can afford to take a calculated risk in 2008.

Copyright 2008 - Paul Jerard / Aura Publications
About the Author
Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, is a co-owner and the director of Yoga teacher training at: Aura Wellness Center in, Attleboro, MA. He is an author of many books on the subject of Yoga and has been a certified Master Yoga teacher since 1995.

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