The press does a great job of getting us into fear. This word is the center-point of Rosemary’s post. It seems, especially since 9/11, that there has been a deliberate campaign to keep us fearful. Call me a conspiracy theorist if you will, but think about it; watch the news (FOX or MSNBC) and listen for the undercurrent, the focus of the articles, the energy of the reporters or anchors. What is your sense?
Now, I don’t even want to go into the motivations for this, if there even are any. Sensation sells. And if the commercials on news channels are any indication then the news is all about selling. And maybe it’s that simple.
The key point here is we have choices. We can choose to listen and believe everything we hear on the news. If we do there is good reason for fear! Ebola is big in the news with a handful of people here in the US who have come down with the virus and one unfortunate death. But it is well controlled, contained and the chances of an epidemic here are next to none. So why all the frenzy and controversy? It sells; it keeps us tuned in. We have a choice – to tune out!
I am not suggesting a total “news fast” here, although there are many, including some of my esteemed teachers, who recommend avoiding the news, all media for that matter! I do limit the amount of news programming I watch and I watch with a very critical eye and ear, looking at the underlying story, motivation, nuance. And most importantly I choose how to react.
That said, if you ask Rosemary she would say I often over-react at the nonsense that is being spouted and reported as news. Maybe that’s my choice!
Here’s the key to Rosemary’s Exploration:
There are a lot of fear-mongers who would invite you to feel fear. There are a lot of situations in the world that, when focused on, will generate fear. There are, though, a lot MORE situations that invite us to celebrate.
Rosemary goes on to list many, even down to the functions of our bodies, the meals we eat and the air we breathe. Do you celebrate your stomach for taking care of the meal you just ate?
One of the methods I choose while practicing Qigong is the “inner smile” made popular by Mantak Chia. As my practice winds down and I begin the closing breathing and self-massage, I go through my inner organs in my mind’s eye and thank them with a smile! This is my way of celebrating my health, my body and my physical life. Fear, bad news, horror stories of violence and greed will not give me ulcers. I smile to my stomach and offer my thanks and praise for the awesome work it does!
And if that sounds too weird to you, then choose other ways to celebrate. Maybe it’s your safety record as a good driver. Maybe it’s a fabulous accomplishment by you or a family member. Look for the good news from the simple, everyday successes to the complexities of technology that allow you to read this half-way around the world, instantly.
As Rosemary concludes:
Celebrate! You are reading this. Fear reminds you that you have forgotten to celebrate what’s good, what’s going well. Choose to focus on celebrating and let the fear take a back seat. There’s always something to celebrate, even if it’s just that next breath that you take!