Handling fear: the method
Fear, or precisely, its modern cousin, anxiety, is very clever. It has to be or you’d soon discover it was just an illusion and then it would have to vanish and it likes being around here too much to do that without a fight. And can you blame it? It’s a great place to be here on the planet.
However, it’s hard to feel that when anxiety rules the roost and if you can renegotiate your contract with it to your mutual benefit so it simmers down and leaves you in peace but is still somehow able to hang around and enjoy the show, you can be as happy as a sand boy or girl pretty much all the time, no matter what’s happening or what you perceive is about to happen.
The Taoists have innumerable ways to come at this but perhaps one of the most direct is by going to source, altering the balance at a deep level and so elicit a profound shift at the surface of things too.
When your kidneys are replete with chi, you feel safe and sound and nothing in the universe can faze you much. But as soon as your kidney chi gets depleted, either by a phase of illness, stress, being exposed to cold-damp climate, lack of sleep, or hormonal flux, a fearful state arises within.
Then no matter how safe and sound you actually are, you feel anxious and automatically produce anxiety-ridden thinking, which makes you even more anxious. This is one of fear’s main tricks: it encourages you to attempt in vain to resolve things by thinking about them fearfully, which depletes your chi even more.
But by increasing the flow of chi through kidneys, the fearful state subsides of itself without you having to think a single thing to make it happen, other than, thank goodness for that, once it’s passed.
To increase the flow of chi through the kidneys do the following:
This is a three-part ‘operation’, each part intended to stimulate different aspects of kidney chi production.
Start off by pressing behind each inner ankle bone until you find where it aches most and most deliciously (if you like a nice sharp, poignant ache) and then massage that ache with controlled gusto for 30 seconds on both feet simultaneously. This induces the kidneys to be more receptive to chi-flow.
Then, press knuckles into lower back either side of spine at waist level and knead in circular motion 36 times. This softens and stimulates the kidney area.
Finally, rub backs of hands up and down with magnificent briskness over the same area until you’ve induced great heat, at which turn palms inwards and press them into the back to encourage the heat to penetrate.
As you do so, chant resonantly, or if inappropriate merely visualize yourself chanting resonantly, the kidney chi warming sound: FUIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII.
Starting with the fu bit in falsetto, thence diving the voice down through the IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII bit all the way down to the deepest bass note you can reach and repeat six times.
You’ll notice your kidney region feeling warm and within ten minutes you’ll also notice your fearful thinking is no longer fearful and your anxiety-related stress levels have dropped.
Now, tell your fear you love it and thank it for trying to protect you from harm all these years, but that for the time being, you’re going to protect yourself by being more let-go and in the flow instead, thus leaving it free to have a rest.
I wish you a fearless day in which you accomplish an unprecedented amount as enjoyably as a child at play.