Endurance in the Coming Race
What can they take from you that you fear losing? Cast off your weights.
“You only have power over people as long as you don’t take everything away from them. But when you’ve robbed a man of everything, he’s no longer in your power — he’s free again.”
- Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn
Thank you, Maree Buscke, for reminding me of this quote. There is so much left that they can take, and yet, if you don’t fear losing it, their power over you diminishes. There is nothing they can take from me that I fear losing. This is not to say I don’t have fear anymore — I DO — but I don’t let it control me and I don’t make decisions under its spell.
When I was in the Social Justice cult, in the six months or so that it took to let go of my fear, I grappled with the thought of losing friends, reputation, status, income, career, security, social circles, prestige, anonymity, and identity. Getting over that fear took time. Ultimately, as I saw things in the world getting worse around me, I think I just became more afraid of the consequences of NOT doing the right thing, of not speaking and trying to find truth, than I was of losing all of those things.
Just because you face these fears once, doesn’t mean you can’t fall under their spell again. In the past few years, I have seen some people, even truth-seekers, grapple with those old fears again — getting ensnared by one or more of them. When people start laying up treasures on earth, after having lost them once, they can sometimes start to fear losing them again. Your “fame” (LOL), your followers, your social circles, your public “friends,” your bridges, your reputation, your perceived opportunities and power and influence — these things are all meaningless in the end. If you’re scared of losing them, for any reason, you’ve already given them too much power over you.
The secret is knowing that worldly things are temporal. You can’t take them with you. They are useful insofar as they allow you to walk the path God has set out before you, but as ends in and of themselves? They are empty. They are not ends. They are means. In the end, these earthly treasures, these tools, these comforts, mean very little. They cannot compete with meaning and purpose and truth.
I have fortunately never grappled with the fears of losing my freedom or my life, not like so many people throughout history have had to do. I hope not to have to…