The Difference Between Fear and Faith

When someone has faith, they believe that something good will happen. A fearful person expects the opposite; they believe something bad might happen.

Both fear and faith operate on a belief system. Positive. Negative. Hopeful. Doubtful. Excited. Scared. Optimistic. Pessimistic.

Neither outlook is true, but those with faith have a different experience than those with fear.

The faithful have a wider view — looking for evidence to support their expectations of prosperity, success, gratification, accomplishment, fulfillment.

The fearful have a narrow view — paying attention to their immediate surroundings, anticipating danger, while remaining acutely aware of possible misfortune. Possible failure.

Fear shuts a person down, while faith opens a person up. Fear can be protective, whereas faith can make someone vulnerable.

Too much faith leads to foolishness, but too much fear leads to self-doubt.

People need both faith and fear in their lives. But why is it that some people lean more to one than the other?

I’m worried that I lack faith. That I forget to be hopeful. That I’m shutting down too much. Not staying curious enough.

How does one keep the faith? Is it a practice? Do I have faith already, but I don’t recognize it as such?

I’m familiar with the fear. Very familiar. The doubt. The cynicism. The negative thoughts and feelings. The focus on what’s wrong instead of what could be right.

Maybe if I study fear closer, I will identify the belief system underlying the fear. And if I can get closer to the belief system, maybe I can understand how to access faith, too.

dreamer, poet, philosopher, writer

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store