The Reptilian Brain

Fear and Control

by Kathy Wilson Anderson

Fear has many uses. It can be used as a warning to keep you from entering into a situation that might hurt you. It can be used to motivate you away from something, such as a harmful relationship or a dangerous situation. It can also be used by others to control you.

How do people use fear to control others? When you understand what happens physiologically when people experience fear it becomes quite easy, as you'll see.

There is a part of your brain that exists solely for your survival called the " Reptilian " brain, which is the original part of your brain. As humans evolved, our brains grew and other parts were added, such as the limbic system which deals with emotions and the cerebral portion which is the thinking part. This Reptilian brain is located at the stem of the brain, securely protected by the rest of the brain. When all other parts of the brain are non-functional, this part will still be ticking away, assuring your physical survival.

When you experience the emotion of fear, your Reptilian brain goes into action and the rest of your brain shuts down. The function of this part of your brain is to support you either to fight or in flight. When you are in the emotional state of fear, you have two choices and everything you do will be based on one of those choices.

If you're thinking, "Hoo haa. We're too advanced for that", remember the last time you were in a very disagreeable situation. Were you wanting to have a nice cozy, loving chat with the other person? Not likely. Probably you were wanting to get away from them and escape the uncomfortableness. Or maybe you were thinking how satisfying it would be if they got a comeuppance. These are flight and fight reactions.

Additionally, when you are experiencing fear, your entire body goes into fight or flight mode. All your blood is redirected to the parts that are needed for fight or flight - your heart, lungs, muscles, and your Reptilian brain. The rest of your brain is left with only enough blood to keep it on idle, which means that you have no cabability for rational or creative thought. It's all black or white, yes or no, good or evil. In this state you do not have the ability to think of alternative solutions to the situation.

Only run or fight.

How ideal for the military! If they keep masses of people in fear and educate them in the many ways to kill other humans, they have a ready, willing, able, and non-thinking military force. This falls right into alignment with the basic premise of the military: follow orders without question (or without thinking). Whoever came up with the idea of using fear like this was a real genius. Just look at what they've created!

The polarity thinking that is created by fear can also be used very easily and effectively on the general populace by our politicians and other powers. Look at how our own country is divided right now by the fear that has been promoted by the current administration. They are continually coming up with new ways of keeping the citizens of the U.S. in a state of fear. The "security alert" with it's color coding is perfect. All they have to do is change the color of it to turn the level of fear in this country up or down, just like controlling the flow of water in a faucet.

What's the answer? First, get yourself out of the state of fear. In order to be able to think you need to be able to use the other parts of your brain. If you are having difficulty getting out of fear, here are a few things you can do:


Especially the news. Have you ever felt wonderful, or even good, after you watched the news? Even the commercials are designed to make you feel sick and fearful.

Get in touch with the earth. Go for a walk without your cell phone or CD player and truly pay attention to the beauty that surrounds you. Notice all the things that are there to support you - trees for shade, all vegetation for oxygen, ants to clean up the minutest messes, birds to spread seed for more plants to grow.

Show appreciation to your body by giving it something nice - a massage, a cup of herbal tea, organic food, pure water. It will thank you by feeling more energized.

Don't hang around negative people or people who are being negative at the time. You don't need to absorb their fear any more than you need to absorb the fear from the news on TV.

As you begin to emerge from the state of fear and can once again think rationally and creatively, look at how you can create unity in your life instead of the polarity caused by fear. The world will thank you.


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