London is notorious for cycling accidents as there are too many vehicles of all shapes and sizes that share a very limited space. Over the last 5 years there have been 22,988 accidents and 80 deaths involving cyclists in London.
Last summer I cycled to work nearly everyday. But then I stopped as I could sense my son’s anxiety associated with it. He didn’t say anything directly but hinted about the disrespectful attitude of motorists and crazy roundabouts.
Over the weekend we got my bicycle ready for the road. This morning when the time came I was filled with self-doubt. Would my awareness be good enough for the road? Would I have the physical strength to go all the way and come back later in the day? I finally got on my cycle and rode the 10 kilometers to work.
The air was fresh and clean, the traffic was thin, the sunshine was still soft and I felt as if I had just gently flown into work. It was exhilarating! After ages I felt light as a feather!
It felt like the first step towards true joy.
I was fearlessly claiming my life back.
When I look around, the media and governments are constantly fear-mongering. It is either the Russians or the ubiquitous terrorist. It is either an epidemic or the next financial disaster. It’s the woman in the hijab or the man in the hoody. It’s either the black, the white or the yellow, the Christian, the Muslim, the Hindu or the Jew.
The fear is designed to keep us separate, isolated, suspicious. It creates more walls when what we need is more bridges.
“There is nothing to fear except fear itself.”
-Harper Lee, To Kill a Mocking Bird.
“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”
Frank Herbert, Dune