How Fear Controls Us

This is an excerpt from the book, Why Is God Laughing, by Deepak Chopra:

“…Fear’s main tactic is to make illusion seem real. But imagined pain isn’t the same as real pain. Imagined death isn’t real death. When you give in to fear, you are either projecting into the future or reliving the past. Here and now, you are safe. While fear is trying to convince you that it’s real, what’s really happening is that you lose touch with the present. The world turns into one big dentist’s waiting room with everyone anticipating the next thing that hurts.”

“Sometimes the dentist does hurt,” Mickey said.

“So you’re saying that fear helps it hurt less? I don’t think so. If everybody is afraid in the waiting room but only five percent wind up feeling pain in the chair, then fear is pointless ninety-fife percent of the time. Fear is a terrible predictor of the future. In fact, nothing is as unreliable as fear, and yet people rely on it over and over again.”

“That’s how fear works,” said Fransisco. “Anytime one of your fears comes true, you give fear the credit for having protected you until that moment. Which only encourages you to spend your whole life anticipating disaster.”

“…Here’s a story for you. A young woman goes to her doctor to get a checkup. ‘I’m deathly afraid of cancer,’ she says. ‘Are you sure I’m okay?’ The doctor says, ‘Absolutely. Your tests are clean. You don’t have cancer.’ But she’s still sure she does, so a few weeks later, the woman goes back. The doctor examines her again, and again he says she has nothing to worry about. She doesn’t have cancer.”

“This goes on for years. Every few months the woman goes to see her doctor, certain that she has cancer, and every time she doesn’t.”

“Finally, she’s eighty, and when she goes for her next checkup the doctor says, ‘I’m terribly sorry. I have bad news. You have cancer.'”

“The woman throws up her hands. ‘I told you so.'”

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3 Responses to “How Fear Controls Us”

  1. suburbancorrespondent Says:

    In other words, “Fear not!” or “Be not afraid!” It interests me how many times those phrases (or similar ones) come up in the Bible.

  2. Laura :) Says:

    Just today I was thinking of this verse from the Bible…

    Matthew 6: 34 “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

    Most worry is about tomorrow and I’ve been feeling so strongly lately to be fully present in each moment.

    I’m seeing my kids grow up so fast that I’m finding myself worrying if they will be prepared for tomorrow….I can get so caught up in those thoughts that I’m missing the _right now_ moments.

    My new mantra, if you will, is “be present in every moment” 🙂 Not a new concept, but new to me!! 🙂

  3. Veronika Says:

    I just wrote about being present the other day, and the example I used was fear of illness. Being present really seems to help me with that. Now if I could just find a way to remain present during my period.


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