The Choice: Peace or Chaos

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We may not be able to control the circumstances in our lives, but we can always choose our reactions to those events. A Course in Miracles teaches us that there are only two emotions; love and fear. All positive feelings stem from love; all negative feelings are rooted in fear.

This very moment, millions of people are gripped with fear of the coronavirus. Many are reacting as if the world is coming to an end. We’ve been told what to do; minimize our contact with others, rigorous and frequent hand cleansing, and avoid touching our face. Yet massive amounts of people are flooding the supermarkets, negating every recommendation for sanitation and distance. We are told those at the highest risk are elderly with compromised immune systems. Still, grocers are opening early to accommodate that high-risk population, like placing high-riskers in a petri dish.

Additionally, panic-driven investors are selling stocks at low prices; some people are too scared to take care of their emotional, physical, and spiritual needs for fear of being around someone who has had exposure to the virus.

All of this fear and panic creates the stress that compromises a person’s immune system and makes them more susceptible to getting sick.

We cannot stop fear; it is built in to warn us of real danger. But, if we deplete our energy with imaginary disasters, we won’t have the where-with-all when the real threat happens.

Even though we can’t control the feeling of fear, there is plenty we can do if we choose love instead of fear.

Love is comforting. The Course in Miracles has taught me that I’m always safe when I stay connected to the loving Voice within.

Am I safe right at this moment? When I look around, does everything seem to be in place? The sky is blue; the pictures are on the wall. I’m well right now.

Are my loved ones ok? Do I have food and shelter? Am I out for myself, or am I mindful of other people’s needs?

When I do have to go out, am I racing around, slamming on my horn, banging into people with my grocery cart? Or, am I looking around, smiling at people, and thanking the clerks for working so hard during this challenging time?

Am I ramping up my fear by staying glued to the news, or am I catching up on projects, spending quality time with family members, playing cards, and old-fashioned games?

Am I listening to internal fear-based fantasies that something terrible is going to happen or am I sticking to the facts of what’s actually happening to me right this moment?

Last but not least, am I being honest with myself about my reactions? Is there something inside of me that enjoys the chaos, or do I love peace?

We have no control over how the world is run, but every moment offers the choice to practice love or fear. When the fear is the greatest, we have the opportunity to strengthen our faith and spiritual connection by refusing fear-based traumatic reactions, or love’s offering of serenity and peace.

Love or fear, it’s a choice.

About the Author — Dr. Donna Marks believes that the current models for diagnosis, treatment, and addiction have failed. Her mission is to help save at least 10 million lives by 2030, through education and prevention. She has been an author, consultant, educator, public speaker, licensed psychotherapist, and addictions counselor in private practice in Palm Beach, Florida, for more than thirty years.

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Dr. Donna Marks is a licensed psychotherapist and an addictions counselor. She is certified in Gestalt Therapy, Psychoanalysis, Hypnosis, and Sex Therapy.

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