Once fear is removed, we start moving towards immediate pleasures and fantasies. This is why there is fear even about even removing fear. We are afraid that we might endanger ourselves in the long term. But this too is one of the important intermediate stages before reaching an elevated state. After we get reasonably saturated with our immediate pleasures and desires then we move on towards things that we are expected by society. Now, the fear is drastically lower compared to how it was before the fear removal process.
Ways to remove fear: Insights through knowledge from associative thinking chains and direct experience through exploration:
Now that we have the entire internet at our fingertips, we can start off with just about any existential or religious question that you have and look it up on Google. Now, you would have access to other people’s views on the topic and you also find some related terms to your basic question. Start exploring all of them. The interest is maintained since, you still have the impetus of your original question and the other things that you encounter build upon it, so it stays aligned and you continually gain energy for your exploration.
What is the common reason for people to get tired at work? Its because they are doing something which they don’t really want to do right?. However, when you explore something because of true interest in it, you only gain energy from it.
So now to give an analogy, you start building this expanding sphere which started as a point. Its an entire associative network that you start building from your single question. This network is what we call knowledge right! in common language. You start seeing how different fields overlap and start exploring many more questions in a similar manner. So you have this continuous burgeoning of expanding bubbles of knowledge. You will find that they overlap a lot too. The overlap is important because that is the connection. The more the connections, the deeper the knowledge and wisdom.
Along with intellectual knowledge, it is very important to gain direct experience as much as you can because direct experience is far closer to the truth than stuff that you read. Check out ‘Terence Mckenna’ if you want a shocker.
This is the method I use to acquire knowledge through exploration. It is inspired from nature in a lot of ways. For e.g.: It is surprisingly similar to the universe expansion which continually expands in all directions like a balloon being inflated. It also resembles evolution where simple forms evolve to become more and more complex and this happens simultaneously because knowledge is surprisingly interrelated. Once you reach a threshold, you;ll start to look at the world a lot more metaphorically. The ultimate metaphor is enlightenment after all :), where all knowledge is connected and you are one.
Very similar to the Socratic approach:
I find a topic then continually explore all related terms then look for contradictions in my view. Each contradiction provokes further interest, and means more exploration – reading, watching videos, introspection.
This continually expands outwards. Sometimes one view can challenge 100’s of my previous beliefs. In that case it requires mass rewiring to accommodate this. I guess my experiences after reading about Buddhism and meditation have been the greatest rewiring effort i’ve ever done in my life. It has been an exciting journey and very fulfilling.