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Posts tagged ‘anxiety’

“The stage before experiencing calamity is filled with hope, anxiety, and fear.”

Previous section: “The Desire for Power

Today’s section from Descending into War, Descending into Contempt, pp. 22-24:

Dreading Events

The stage before experiencing calamity is filled with hope, anxiety, and fear. Fear fills the lungs and shortens the breath. Anxiety flows through the blood and causes sleeplessness or hysteria. Hope is in the thoughts that the dreaded event will prove less dreadful than anticipated.

Shortening of the breath combined with sleeplessness can cause a weakened immune system, which can lead to sudden illness and incapacitation. Shortening of the breath combined with hysteria can cause behavior that is societally unacceptable, but is condoned at the moment. Shortening of the breath combined with sleeplessness and hysteria weakens the body’s ability to rationally process information so that violent or retrogressive actions can occur.

These changes apply to men and women; however, societal morés influence the extent of the changes. Children descend less quickly into the consequences of shortened breath, sleeplessness, and hysteria; although they may experience hope, anxiety, and fear acutely. A person’s attitude also influences the impact of hope, anxiety, and fear.

Anticipation of the calamity to come affects the spirit, indisputably. The stronger a person’s sense of connection to spiritual belief, the stronger the control of emotions and the less the sinking into anxiety and fear. The connection doesn’t prevent anxiety and fear from appearing, but the sense of support that comes from spiritual connection provides strength in self-conviction and self-dependence. The connection must be sincere to have the strengthening effects.

Calamities are different due to the circumstances in which they happen. A government-sanctioned purge has positive and negative effects on the inhabitants, depending on loyalties and societal standing. Supporters may be fearful, yet joyous, and those who resist may be hopeful, yet afraid. Rebellious uprisings, like government-sanctioned purges, have positive and negative effects. They embolden some and terrify others. Individual attackers, such as serial killers, frighten all because the targets are less clear and the locations seem random. Revenge seekers bring calamity that is frightening and demurring, because the victims can be anyone in any part of society. Honor killings come under the category of revenge seeking.

Fear, a natural emotion, is intensified by calamities that are real or anticipated. Anticipating violence can cause similar emotional distress as experiencing it. Experiencing violence creates altered behavior that invades subsequent actions. Experiencing violence also teaches forceful reactivity that can be released on others in the future.

When intense hatred has been experienced, the experience can be internalized and then used against others. When intense hatred is witnessed but not personally experienced, the demonstrations of intense hatred towards others may be digested un-consciously and then be displayed towards others (towards those displaying the hatred or those receiving it) in the future.

Intense hatred is an emotion that propels towards action or retreat. Either of these reactions causes internal turbulence, so that health can be compromised if the reactions are too extreme. After a calamity, intense hatred requires release so that people can handle the altered circumstances.

Calamities that become long-term evolve into ways of life. They push people to change routines and priorities, but they are less anxiety- and fear-causing. Depending on age, health and attitude, each person reacts to the changed reality by seeing beyond the new situations or pushing against them. Life situations are ever-evolving, and the nature of people is to adapt and learn new rhythms. Refusing to adapt is not human nature.

The stage before experiencing calamity is difficult to endure. It is not a time for judgment of others nor high expectations. It is a time to offer help and provisions. Calamity is a change, megacosmically or societally created, that occurs as a matter of course. To consider it rare is unrealistic. The more that people accept calamity’s place in life, the more they can weather the storms and upheavals.

Next section: “Preparing for the Fight

Fight or Flight Anxiety

Post 114-aiplane window

Anxiety comes from one main source: emotional emptiness. Anxiety fills in the empty spaces when the emotions are out of balance because of uncertainty about the future or because of hormonal and sleep irregularities. One cause is physiological and one is not.

In general, when the cause of anxiety is physiological (hormonal or sleep related), a response will be “flight”: flight from the problem, flight from a relationship, denial of the anxiety, or denial of responsibilities. Flight can be actual leaving (a relationship, work, or community) or distancing emotionally.

The physiologically induced anxiety is relieved through focus on the causes: changing negative sleep patterns, curtailing unnecessary activities, reevaluating shift work situations, examining a lack of human contact, elevating the importance of sleep, reorganizing reality, and prioritizing nutritional deficiencies.

In general, when the cause of anxiety is uncertainty about the future, the response will be “fight”: resistance to offers of help, resistance to inner knowledge of solutions, fighting through instigation of arguments, fighting with oneself through self-harm, fighting with others through physical blows, struggling for dominance, quarrelsomeness, or protection of position. The “fight” response can be appropriate in cases in which aggression has been understood to be the only response, but not when aggression is chosen by default.

The anxiety from uncertainty about the future is relieved by awareness of uncertainty for everyone, by belief in the ability to function without knowing the future, by accepting the cycles of life, by prioritizing nutritional balance, and by focusing on supportive relationships.

Anxiety has fight or flight responses. Other negative states have different responses. See the blog post What’s up with “fight or flight”?.

Note: This information has been spiritually received.

 

 

 

What’s up with “fight or flight”?

Distracting colors

Are “fight or flight” our main responses to fear and stress? That’s what everyone says, but is that so? I’ve asked Spirit, because I want to know. Here’s what Spirit informs me:

People have built-in mechanisms that evaluate danger. (We can call them signals and pulls.) These mechanisms help us evaluate situations and feel how to respond. Our responses depend on many things: age, health status, physical impediments, mental breadth, hunger or thirst, breath capacity, emotional attachments, emotional memories, abdominal state, vision, fears, and awakeness. Besides these uniquely personal statuses, we are influenced by our family, neighbors, responsibilities, and desires.

When a situation requires a response, our bodies (intangible and tangible) must process a response that suits our personal statuses and our outer circle. If the outer circle (family, neighbors, etc.) has strong influence, then our response will be geared towards others. If our response is completely our own, then the personal statuses will force us to devise a response to suit our current situation. If we choose a response that doesn’t suit (for example, choosing to hide when we are too exhausted to move), our signals or pulls will usually join to give us the ability to pursue the chosen response.

Here are typical responses to fear and stress: hiding, lowering to the ground, pulling inwards to be physically compact, freezing in place, falling asleep, entering a shock state, denial, emotional displays (crying, sobbing, begging, anger), and confusion. And possibly, fight. And possibly, flight.  Fight and flight are two responses among many so that to speak only of fight or flight is an incorrect characterization of human response.

Each of the responses has a different effect on the body, some effects being more destructive than others. Stress that is handled through freezing in place or denial has differing effects than fight or angry actions. Stress that is denied can be more destructive than stress that is released through tears. Fear that is handled by hiding can be permanently installed in the body, while fear that is handled through entering a shock state can be forgotten. Each response yields a different effect on the body depending on the personal statuses and the forces of the outer circle.

Characterizing the effects of fear and stress as fight or flight is too broad. Each person is an individual response being, and no two people are alike.

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