The Fear Epidemic or the Awareness Evolution
It all begun with a buzz on the news. Nobody was really sure what was going on and it just seemed like a distant thing we were all watching over the television set. There wasn’t anyone taking this seriously until suddenly coffees, restaurants and streets became empty, everybody started to go nuts with human contact and it was impossible to talk about any other subject than this one. People got caught up by fear and they tried to instigate that same emotion into others who appeared to be calm and serene facing the “crisis”. The Coronavirus was here and our lives would never be the same!
“Gentlemen, you can’t fight in here! This is the War Room.”
The fear pandemic lead to a wave where certain people were trying to blame other people who were not in panic, calling them irresponsible or unaware for not giving in to the paranoia that everybody seemed to be living. It’s like they actually wanted to convince others to be afraid in order to 1. Fulfil the need to be right and 2. Validate their own emotions. This comes as no surprise in societies where validation comes from the outside rather than from the inside. Since fear is a highly disruptive emotion, when in the presence of someone who remains calm facing an epidemic, it’s like an invalidation of the fear which is now used to justify a whole bunch of attitudes.
When people are afraid they become intolerant towards everything, especially people who remain calm. And people who remain calm get surprised and even hurt with the lack of Humanness caused by the energy of fear in the people who surround them. Friends were becoming upset with each other, lovers were having quarrels over the virus and families were arguing about it.
“It’s quite an experience to live in fear, isn’t it? That’s what it is to be a slave.”
First of all, fear is one of the most primary emotions. Since it puts the body into “fight or flight” mode — meaning it prepares the body for survival by taking the blood to the upper and lower limbs — when constantly under this emotion, feelings of anxiety, hysteria and panic may subside, because if the primary function is to survive, the blood is no longer supplying the vital organs, imparting therefore digestion, breathing, thinking and the immune system. Digestion is prevented from absorbing nutrients, breathing is severely reduced leading to panic attacks, thinking becomes irrational due to the lack of oxygen and the function of the cells gets compromised, therefore damaging the immune system.
But does this mean we can’t feel fear at all?
No, it does not. We can and we should feel fear and let it go. Fear, like any other emotion, exists to show us something about ourselves. Dr. Hawkins gives us a wonderful tool in his brilliant emotional guidebook Letting Go: The Pathway of Surrender. Releasing the emotion means we live through it and we constantly surrender it until its energy vanishes. However due to a lot of social conditioning, including cultural norms, the news and the energy of those who surround us, we tend to get caught up in lower vibrational states — such as those of fear — and resist them constantly, which means the same emotion keeps popping up until it is fully allowed, felt and released.
The Fear Propaganda
The energy of emotions is contagious. Whoever hasn’t experienced to feel calm when in the presence of someone serene and slightly nervous when in the presence of someone enraged? As fear is a mechanism of survival it pays its role of warning us to a near danger, but that’s where its role should end. Constantly feeding it only imparts our vital functions as previously described.
“Whoever controls the media controls de mind.”
In a world permanently connected through television and internet, spreading fear is faster as we are constantly receiving information through different channels. The so-called fake news hit in, particularly through Whatsapp voice messages that don’t report the facts as they are and ingrain people’s minds with a paranoia-state. The tone of voice and the words chosen by journalists instigate fear deeper creating an alarmist mindset. The words we choose and the energy of our voice are serious tools of our speech, so it is very important to pay particular attention to these. Most of the information the news aim to communicate is completely misunderstood due to the distortion these two filters create. It is a choice for all of us, and especially for those who deliver the news, to keep calm and energetically elevated facing any event. This responsibility goes further than we may think due to the placebo and the nocebo effects, as described by Bruce Lipton:
“It is a scientific fact that positive and negative thinking have a profound effect on the function of the immune system. One of the leading fronts in immunologic research is the field of Psychoneuroimmunology. Broken down into its root words: immunology is the body’s system that protects against internal infections. Neuro-immunology is the study of how the brain controls the immune system. Psycho-neuroimmunology is the science of how consciousness shapes the brain’s control of the immune system.
Psychoneuroimmunology research clearly reveals that consciousness controls the function of the immune system. Positive consciousness is responsible for the Placebo Effect, wherein the mind can heal almost any disease, while stress and negative thinking create the Nocebo Effect, which can cause almost any disease. The fear of COVID-19 coupled with the resulting threats to survival profoundly inhibits the population’s immune system and further exacerbates the epidemic.”
As a message of fear is transmitted and contagious so is a message of hope and positivity. When we are bombarded by a depleting energy, the best thing is to connect to our inner self. We must look within! Now more than ever, looking within holds the key to our peace.
It is very important to keep an eye in our emotions. An observant role will give us the necessary distance and understanding to handle the emotional chaos unlocked by current times. When we are truly present with our emotions, without judging them or without identification with them, they lose their energy. Meaning we simply live the emotions without avoiding them through escape mechanisms like constant distractions and expression, including projecting emotions into others. By keeping the watcher paying full attention to what goes on inside, we also get more connected with that natural compass we all have called emotional state, therefore repressing and suppressing emotions also stops as nothing goes by unnoticed. As we become more familiar with this process, we realise we have the freedom to rise over our current circumstances and take responsibility for our emotional state. This is the work spectrum of people such as Joe Dispenza, Louise Hay, Abraham Hicks, Vadim Zeland, Teal Swan, and many others. As Dr. Hawkins indicates, the key is not labelling the emotion or even talking about it, simply focusing on the sensations in the body. This conscious observation allows it, neutralises it and lets it go.
The Awareness Evolution
In Eastern philosophy and Ancient indigenous cultures, all stages of life are accepted and understood. This is a by-product of the natural connection of the human being with the Earth and its cycles, an awareness sensed and developed from a very young age with the overall process of life. In many places I visited, as I was meeting all those people whose lifestyles were so different than my own, I realised about my resistance, disconnection and absence of awareness. The kind of culture I grew up in taught me to have preferences, to prefer this over that, therefore preventing me from accepting everything as it is, resisting change and the cycles as they happened. I believe our overall inability to face death, treating this subject as a taboo or a disgrace is related with this perspective. Nature contains a powerful key for inner peace. If we just sit and observe nature, we realize the impermanence of our human condition. Observing the waves coming and going on the shore or the sun rising and falling in the horizon, or the night following the day, or the moon constantly shifting, gives us understanding and serenity. And in the midst of that contemplation, we see the permanence of what we truly are.
“I’ll tell you what hermits realize. If you go off into a far, far forest and get very quiet, you’ll come to understand that you’re connected with everything.”
Now that most of us are locked in, we have the opportunity to look deeper into our humanness. This is a chance for Mankind to rise up to the challenge and re-think a lot of the things about our societies such as the way we handle economy and jobs, number of working hours, the role technology is playing when it comes to life quality, the focus on productivity rather than enjoyment, what sustainability means to us, the obsession about equality rather than integration of diversity, the meaning of worldwide markets, connection and thrive.
It is also a chance for us as individuals to re-think the time we dedicate to the things we do daily and our awareness while doing them, like where our food comes from, the time we take to cook, how mindful we are while eating, the connection with those around us, how we are a part of our community, what and who is our community and so forth. Some of these aspects are directly linked to the endless dissatisfaction experienced by any Millennial.
Most of us are concerned for our health or we have parents or grandparents whom we fear for. This fear comes from 1. our unpreparedness to accept the cycles of life as previously described and 2. our disease enhancing culture due to the constant exposure to pollutants to our organism from food to disruptive emotions. I look at my Grandmother and I can see the contrast with so many other people her age I met. Those other people — Taoists — they were in perfect health. Even though some were actually older than my Grandmother, they looked like they were in their 50s and as I watched them walk away they even looked like they were teenagers. The secret? 1. Daily exercise, especially ancient breathing techniques and body movements such as Qi Gong (they were actually able to move better than a lot of young people out there) 2. Proper nutrition when it comes to quantity and quality, including nutrients from nature like sunshine and fresh air and 3. Perhaps the most important one, a joy for living, an acceptance of the cycles of life, a spark in their eyes, a sense of humor, a laughable attitude towards any event, an understanding of being here. Would it be so difficult to ingrain such a mentality here in the West? Couldn’t we just exercise or eat properly not for the fear of death or disease, but for the love and enjoyment of our humanness? Couldn’t we implement healthy habits not because we wanted to live longer, but rather because we’d enjoy spending our time here with quality and awareness? This is something we can also reflect upon during the spiritual retreat that this crisis is forcing us to take.
When it comes to the environment this general stop is something that each tree in all the forests on Earth is grateful for. Pollution levels are constantly rising due to an insatiable culture that thirsts for more. Perhaps we’re having the chance to realize that less is more, to realize that we can live more with less, that we can choose quality over quantity. Perhaps we can understand that the most important thing is our connection to the Earth, to the living organism that gives us home. If we take proper care of this organism we’re taking proper care of our health as everything is interconnected in the ecosystem of life.
It is important to nourish serenity instead of feeding all the disruptive stimuli we are thrown daily by media and social connections. We must give life to what is important, kind of like teaching a kid to use a search engine online: we can chose what we want to concentrate on, what we want to hold our attention on, for wherever we place our attention is where our energy is. Our attention gives it life. Then, why not focus on joy, serenity and love? Why not use this time at home to connect with our hearts, focus on the world we want to live in and envision it daily in our mind’s eye? Why not create a life cycle celebration epidemic?
This article was written with the cooperation of Teresa Pinto, a teacher focused on Environmental Education and Paradigm Shifts