I've lived most of my life like a bird in a cage with the door wide open. At any time, I could have hopped over to the opening, soared to new heights, and explored new horizons. All along, I've had the ability to fly, but my own fear and self-imposed limitations kept me there. I was my own prison guard.
What I learned from Josh the former Pararescueman is that the way to manage fear is to plan for what to do if and when something does go wrong. People are fearful when they are uncertain about what they are facing and about what they can do. Josh taught us how to figure out what had happened, and he taught us what was in our scope of practice to do.
In the face of the fragility of life and mighty forces of hatred and fear, many will lapse into denial or despair, making decisions from a place of spiritual defeat. This is not what our tradition asks of us. We are called to fully acknowledge the reality of evil, and lovingly perpetuate life in spite of it.