Whenever we feel threatened by talents, ideas, views, and independence of others, or when we feel that our thoughts and beliefs have to be protected from the influence of others, our Fight or Flight system kicks in.

Fight or Flight Reactions

Impact on the body

Shame, anger, aversion, anxiety, depression and fear are all interpreted by the brain as a crisis response, and any of these can be turned on just by a thought. When our fight or flight system is activated, we tend to perceive everything in our environment as a possible threat to our survival.

Our Fight of Flight mechanism is a nature designed genetic wisdom that is activated by the stimulation of the hypothalamus in the brain which releases adrenaline, noradrenaline, and cortisol into our bloodstream. This process is hard wired into our brain and whenever it is set off, the pattern of firing nerve cells cause our body to undergo dramatic changes that are catabolic in nature.

Our respiratory rate increases. Blood is shunted away from our digestive tract and directed into our muscles and limbs, which require extra energy and fuel for running and fighting. Our pupils dilate. Our awareness intensifies. Our sight sharpens. Our impulses quicken. Our perception of pain diminishes. Our immune system mobilizes with increased activation. We become prepared—physically and psychologically—for fight or flight. We scan and search our environment, "looking for the enemy."1

When you percieve threat, your nervous system and body prepare you to kill, or to take evasive counter measures to escape, usually by running away.2 Today we activate our Fight or Flight mechanism with our thoughts. With an average of 40,000 thoughts circulating through our minds daily, and no opponent to fight, nor any place to run to, the Fight or Flight system has no means to fulfill its mission. As a result, trauma gets ingrained as information within every atom awaiting a rogue thought to trigger it so it can seek expression as dibilitating symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Fighting an enemy that does not exist

Although our threat system was designed to protect us, it does so in a way that can actually cause suffering. And because of that it has become the source of many mental health problems, and self destructive behaviours. This is because is is not designed for rational thinking.3 as a result, it finds itself in a constant battle with an enemy that does not exist.

During early human history, our fight or flight response served us well. It protected us from the wild animals and other risks to our survival. Today lions and tigers are gone and what has taken their place are aspirations towards ideals and success nurtured in the media, such as a desirable body image, worry about spots, wrinkles, weight, and balding. Then there is workplace stress, bouts with illness, birth of a child, getting a new job, resentment and revenge, financial worries, having no friends, no family, or partner.

If you look closely, you will see that the above are our Drive and Affiliation attachments and aversions which trigger the Fight or Flight Reactions. Isn't that interesting? Today our attachments and aversions are the ferocious beasts that terrorize the hypothalamus into releasing toxins into our system, and they do so with almost every other thought. Just imagine having an enemy so formidable to conquer, an enemy that lives in your mind 24/7. But it is this war, and the daily battles we fight with these enemies to rise above our petty attachments and aversions that gives our life meaning - true meaning.

As time progressed we moved out of stone age and away from our four legged, terror igniting roommates but neglected to do the required work to evolve in consciousness. Our psyche remains littered with latent impressions of violent experiences that trigger constant reactory thought patterns that wreaks havoc thoroughout our nervous system, and the universe. With no traditional means for the Fight or Flight system to seek expression by fighting or fleeing, a mechanism that was designed to protect us has unfortunately turned on us. The enemy is not out there anymore, it is within.

With the enemy living in our hearts and minds, we need to educate and train ourselves to understand the mechanism behind the sources that stimulate our senses, and produce the thought patterns which trigger heart stopping, and soul weeping emotions.

It is not that we do not see our dysfunction, we know it exists because we we spend several trillion dollars every year on mood altering medication and drugs. We know its there, we just won't deal with it because it requires facing some very painful, and frightening physical, and emotional sensations in order to enter our healing mind for the purpose of evolving the consciousness.

It requires far less courage, diligence, and awareness to direct our highly capable and intelligent brain towards material and technological achievements. But that same technology has magnified the destructive impact that the dysfunction of the human mind has has upon the planet, other lifeforms, and upon humans themselves. Never before has human madness been so destructive, and its effects so clearly visible.

Transcending This Dysfunction

It is important to realize that this madness we embody is the result of the environment we were reared in, and how we have taken the emotions that arose from those experiences and integrated it with the vastly distributed system in our brain.

It is almost impossible to cultivate positive attitudes and beliefs when we are stuck in survival mode. Our heart is not open. Our rational mind is disengaged. Our consciousness is focused on fear, not love. Making clear choices and recognizing the consequences of those choices is unfeasible. We are focused on short-term survival, not the long-term consequences of our beliefs and choices. When we are overwhelmed with excessive stress, our life becomes a series of short-term emergencies. We lose the ability to relax and enjoy the moment. We live from crisis to crisis, with no relief in sight.4

Even though we are a product of our upbringing and society, we cannot hold them responsible for our continued suffering. If we do, then love and compassion will continue to elude us. The key to freedom from this suffering lies in becoming mindful of our thought patterns and intentions.5 We need to diligently examine and reexamine our beliefs, values, and goals.

As a result, it makes perfect sense that we keep a close watch on our thoughts, emotions, and intentions so we can make a conscious effort to align ourselves with love and kindness. When all is said and done, it is our capacity to be sensitive of the suffering in ourselves and others, and our willingness to be able to overcome it is what differentiates us humans from animals. If not for that, we both eat, drink, sleep, procreate, and work for survival.