Lets face it. Life ain’t a Hallmark Card.
The human species is under attack from the moment we’re born. There are diseases, hurricanes, floods, wars and now terror and asteroid attacks lurking out there. To our credit, we have somehow survived them all, and are still here to talk about it.
But now we’ve been told by the psychiatric community that hundreds of millions of us are also dealing with a terror they call ‘panic attacks.’ The syndrome is not new, just the name and what its deadly impact can do to an otherwise perfectly healthy mind.
If you suffer them, you need no description; if you don’t, no description will suffice. They are those announced rushes of impending fright and doom that can suddenly fill every pore with a cold dread paralyzing you in place. Like confronting some out-of-nowhere demon whose formless black arms have gripped and are holding you in place as if you will never again catch your breath or live your life.
The medical community is there to help find ways to survive such deadly panic. At the same time, there is a moral community there to help you survive another kind of panic, the kind that grips your heart with fear and doubt whenever you face the terror of a new frontier.
New frontiers…? aren’t they what Americans have been good at crossing from our very first days on this continent…? Well yes, as a nation; however, not always as individuals. We’re like any other member of the human species — fearful of the new, the bold, the unknown. This is why 99.9% of us are followers. Only about 0.1% become leaders. Trail-blazers willing and passionate to go-where-no-man-has-gone-before. Abraham…Moses…Socrates….Confucius….Caesar….Davinci….Michelangelo…Newton….Einstein
Panic is often just the other side of security. We savor the safety of the second for it protects us from the challenge of the first. The challenge to occasionally reach for more than we can touch, and grab for more than we can hold.
When all is said and done and written, most of us will admire the trail-blazers without aspiring to be one ourselves. Why? We’re still a a pretty endangered species who should feel no shame in seeking the safety of security in our lives. Finding some security in this world is in itself blazing trails.
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