Jean Vanier on Fear and Fragility

I am grateful to Jean Vanier founder of the magnificent L’Arche community for the following thoughts

This is a broken world that is very fearful. Fear is all over the place. We will never get rid of fear but we must not being controlled by it motivated by it or subdued by fear. But we fear people discovering our nakedness, our vulnerability, our poverty our fragility that we tried to hide. There is a metaphysical fragility we fear the reality of death, of suffering we are frightened of being diminished of old age. There is a social and relational fear of being pushed down, not recognised, not wanted, rejected not having a place. There is also a fear of chaos, fear of having no meaning, anguish, creating loneliness

Fear of diminishment rejection, loneliness and meaninglessness

But we have our ways out. We have to prove that we are someone.  We need to be admired, to be great.

So we create walls around our hearts. We have to go up the ladder, to have more, to be more, to have power, money, and admiration. We are most frightened of being pushed down the ladder. We need to be secure so we build walls around us, in groups. Don’t be controlled, motivated or subdued by fear and invite someone to take a closer look at Christ and his church who says don’t be afraid for I am with you.