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Fear makes us do weird things.

Last week, after a cellphone was found on a Turkish Airlines flight, the captain declared an emergency, diverted the flight, dumped fuel over Germany, and made an emergency landing in Warsaw, escorted by military jets, where it was warmly received by emergency crews and police.

Just two months ago the same thing happened in Canada, after an airport employee left a phone on board, prompting an emergency landing in Regina.

This is hardly a measured, reasonable response to finding a device. In fact, it is irrational to the point of being absurd.

While it is not always clear whether individuals’ decisions are based in fear, our current collective psychosis affords an interesting perspective on how fear can cloud judgement. When society at large is the subject, we can step back and acknowledge that grounding a plane, scrambling military jets, and dumping thousands of gallons of jet fuel over rural Germany is completely insane. It’s a disgusting waste of resources, time, and—worse yet—promulgates the fear.

These events are illustrative of the unthinking, reactionary state that fear causes. Fear can be a natural response to the very real existential threats we face, and can even help motivate change. It will not, however, help you think clearly, let alone access your intuition.

In my last post, I mention that there are inappropriate ways to respond to the situation in the world, if you are insufficiently informed. Today, I would add that there are plenty of counterproductive ways to respond based on fear to the situation playing out in the world. Fear promotes reacting, rather than imagining instead the world you want to create for yourself and your children, and working actively to manifest that reality.

When you find a cellphone today, don’t divert from your path. Instead, continue towards your dreams.