After attending the Universal Healing Tao retreat with Master Mantak Chia this June, I lost my fear of heights. I discovered it a couple of days ago, when my family and I went to the Great Wolf Lodge – a kids’ paradise with an indoor water park and other attractions. This time they had a new attraction. “Take your family on an invigorating aerial adventure that will have you balancing on ropes, crossing bridges and climbing through obstacles: all from the safety of a climbing harness! Our Ropes Course offers high-flying fun that will elevate your family vacation to a whole new level.”
Yes, you are strapped to a safety harness, however, you are balancing on ropes and fly zip-line and jump from a 40-feet tall tower…. Usually, not my cup of tea… Not at all.
When I was a kid, probably around 10-12, my cousin, Lisa, locked me up in my room. We barely knew each other – she lived with her mom in Uzbekistan – one of the friendly republics of the Soviet Union. She was much older – 18 years old – and I probably was annoying the daylight out of her. So here I was, locked. Not knowing when she unlocks me. There was no toilet in the room. No access to the kitchen as well. However, there was a balcony, which was connected to another balcony – the one in the next room. I could see that the next room balcony was open and I certainly could open my balcony door as well. Our condo was on the 5th floor and the balconies were hanging over a concrete pavement – not even a tree to break the fall. To get from one balcony to another, I had to climb over the railing, walk outside the balcony, holding the railing and then climb over the railing again to get in.
Well, nobody was going to hold me captive. My free spirit was bubbling inside. And off I went – over the railing, walking carefully step by step, not looking down… And here I am – appearing triumphant in the open balcony door. My cousin was so scared, she didn’t make any further attempts to contain me and allowed me to frolic around and paly with her makeup. None of us said anything to our parents.
Yet, even though when I was performing this feat, I was so high on adrenaline, I didn’t feel any fears, my unconscious was mortified. “Oh, no, you can’t be trusted anymore!” – my inner guardian probably thought. And since then I started being afraid of heights. I couldn’t ride any attraction, which included being high…. I mean high above the ground. And I would not only never stand close to the edge of any cliff, but would freak out if somebody else was getting too close. “No, you are too close, step away!” How could they not see the danger? In my mind, I could see my loved ones falling down and myself helplessly flailing my arms and screaming my head off.
When I started studying NLP, I had many opportunities to get rid of this fear, however, I would not allow anybody to touch it. I liked my fear. I believed it was a good fear. It kept me safe.
When I signed for the Universal Healing Tao retreat, I had no idea what to expect. I liked Master Mantak Chia books and was curious about a possibility to learn how to direct and amplify my life force. What I didn’t know that just like NLP, Tao practices give an individual power to transform his or her emotions. However, Taoists put more emphasis on working with emotions stored in organs. And they developed some very elaborate methods of meditation, which allow to release and transform these emotions, using their energy to fuel the body.
Interesting, I didn’t even realize I lost my fear of heights until my husband said, “Would you like to go on this rope course?” I opened my mouth to say, “no way”, and then realized I didn’t feel a familiar knot in my stomach. “You know what…. Let’s do it!”
It was such a bizarre experience. I was walking over lose ropes and narrow beams, high above the ground, and even flying zip lines. Wow! It was fun. My perception of height changed. It didn’t seem as frightening anymore. I had a complete trust in my harness and my body was buzzing with endorphins.
Later we went to a tallest water-slide. Again – it was something I would never do before. This time it was fun. A dark tunnel, then a sudden drop, woo-hoo!
Once again, I realized how simple it is – “Less fear – more fun”. I couldn’t believe I used to be so afraid of such fun activities, allowing my fear hold me back. Apparently, my unconscious decided that I am mature enough to recognize the danger and avoid falling down the high cliffs and 5-floor balconies.