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When I was younger, I would put off washing dishes until the dishes, plates, and utensils were in the sink...

The longer the task of washing dishes was put off, the longer I thought the task would be.

Yet the first time I started to wash those dishes, it took 15 minutes to do.

After a couple weeks of washing dishes, I realized that washing each meal's dishes would take less than 5 minutes.

Thus fear is like the prospect of washing a week's worth of dishes, all piled in the sink.

Facing fear may even seem impossible at first.

However, repeated exposure to fear led me to see that facing each of life's fears takes less time than the first time I spent tackling all of them at once.

Since then I have faced each fear as it arises, watched as it passed by me, and forgot about it.

Today I'm certain that adding Buddha Remembrance to my daily spiritual practice has helped to ward off almost all fear.

It is amazing that uttering the Name-that-calls actually works!

Perhaps Nembutsu practice is helping me to develop fearlessness.

In this context, fearlessness is the quality of mind that is empty of fear. Yet my mind does experience fear temporarily. Then it quickly goes away.

How is this possible? It is most likely Buddha Remembrance has reduced my fear of the afterlife, which has its roots in the fear of death. With regular practice, chanting the Nembutsu has accumulated the merit of fearlessness.

Could it be that Buddha Remembrance is almost like a protective mantra? Its actual purpose is to promote other power of Amida.

For the concept of the Name-that-calls is that by uttering the Nembutsu, I believe that Amida Buddha calling to me. Far from being magical thinking; this is actually a form of self-hypnosis with the purpose of actualizing my faith in the Primal Vow.

Returning to the topic of facing fear, my faith in the Primal Vow and belief in the Name-that-calls leads me to practice Buddha Remembrance.

As a result of that spiritual practice, my mind has learned to control my fears. This quality of my mind called "control over my fears" is the quality of mind that is empty of fear called fearlessness.

As such, it is the working of my faith in the Primal Vow that actualized fearlessness.

Thus I put my faith in Amida Buddha!

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