My trip to India was fast approaching. “But what if I get the flu and can’t go?” my mind kept repeating. I’d heard that the flu going around was bad and that the vaccination, which I’d had, was ineffective. The closer my departure date came, the worse my fear of contracting the flu became. I started avoiding public events for fear of the flu, and at times wore a mask in public that claimed to block flu viruses. Then the big day came, and I hadn’t caught the flu. I thought I’d escaped.
Boarding the plane and belting into my seat, I heard the fellow directly behind me coughing and sneezing. This was a 15-hour flight, and he did that the whole time.
In Dubai, I had to switch planes for my onward flight to Delhi. Once again, arriving at my seat, the fellow right beside me, a different man from the one who was behind me on my first flight, was coughing and sneezing. He did that all three hours of that flight.
Two days later, I came down with a sore throat, cough, headache and felt terrible. I don’t know if it was the flu, but it definitely was an unpleasant virus. This lasted a week, but the cough lasted the entire time I was in India.
So here I’d avoided the flu for a month or two before the trip, and then was seated right next to two men who were very ill and got sick myself. How did that happen?
Swami Rama has an answer: “It is very dangerous to have fears and to brood on them without examining them. Fear invites danger. Don’t forget that. When you are constantly afraid of something you do not realize that you are negatively meditating on that thing and attracting that fear. Many times you think, What if I meet with an accident? What if I meet with an accident? You are preparing yourself for an accident and you will meet with it.” Swami Rama, Samadhi, The Highest State of Wisdom, Pp. 97.
He certainly was right in my case. It was as if I’d attracted the very thing I was so afraid of, in a way that I could not escape. Hopefully I’ll remember not to do this in the future.
What about you?