Re: Fear in Aikido
Don't confuse fear with anxiety. Anxiety is that worrisome emotion that is similar to fear, but not fear. Fear is an immediate state of being, "I fear driving." Anxiety is a predictive state of anticipation, "I am anxious about driving tomorrow." I think many people misdiagnose anxiety for fear. Fear should not be a constant emotion in your life. If you can substitute "fear" with "worry," you probably are more accurate in your diagnosis by doing so. I may worry about being a good dad, but I do not fear being a dad.
If you have acrophobia, your life is altered by that fear. Acrophobiacs do not fly, they do not lean over railings, they do not climb mountains. Every day for their entire life, acrophobiacs experience fear when they use the esclalator, or look out of a tall building, or climb a ladder. Fear changes who we are and how we live. Most of us don't truly experience fear, we experience anxiety. We worry about looking fat, or being uncool. We worry about what clothes we wear, or if traffic will make us late for work.
In aikido, many students that train from a state of fear are the products of violence. A condition altered their life such that they experience fear when they walk down alleys, or past shadows. There are so many reasons to train aikido, I do not believe fear is the pre-dominant one.