Not Anti-Gun, Pro Wellness- Individual to Societal.

With fearful thinking, often the tendency is to jump to conclusions before all the facts are gathered, and certainly before the issue is understood.

Here are a few examples:
Consider how those most strongly opposed to a plant-based diet are often the very ones who haven’t tried it, and who won’t, being up to their waste in the quicksand of their own pride and misinformation. This tendency has to do with fears, misunderstandings and perceptions about the topic.

This applies to many things under the sun.

Fear of spiders or snakes:

My reptile buddy and I have encountered this type of logic many times while hiking. While well into the benches, inevitably we’ll come across a person who is trying to kill a snake. My friend will run up to them and ask them to reconsider their logic about why they are going to kill the snake. As he convinces them to let him set the harmless snake free, he engages in a dialogue with them that has them chasing their tail in illogical assumptions. Basically that the nonvenomous gopher snake was going to go T-rex on them, chase them down and kill them. When their freak out mode stops and they realize it is a non-venomous Gopher snake that is very shy and would much rather get out of the way then “chase them” they realize their fear of the snake was unfounded and irrational.

Guns:

This is another biggie in that way, especially here in America. Often those most strongly opposed to guns are those who have never seen or fired one. The hyped up fearful logic is almost that the gun has a mind of its own and will fire repeatedly in excess, going off at random like a bomb. Each of these are discussions in and of themselves, but these are to make a point that often fear and hype is mass produced/shared about something that in the end is unfounded and the pace of the panic is completely irrational. The mode or actions then put into place are also irrational. Having said that, I will make it clear that I am not anti-gun, I am pro mental health, (all health in fact,) or wellness; I am pro wellness. While I agree that tighter restrictions on those who have access to assault rifles and handguns may be beneficial for general public safety, a weapon that requires practice, responsibility and discipline is of course not by itself the root of the problem. There is always a deeper issue. But fearful thinking does not accommodate this reality.

There is an interesting side note along those lines: If you have read my first memoir, The Wellness Diaries you will know that at one time I was quite paranoid, and this was getting the best of me. Without changing my course as explained in the book, I was being completely controlled by my fears that were quite irrational and it would have likely led me to trouble. At one time I was a permitted concealed gun carrier. I went through the classes and paid my fee to legally carry a concealed hand gun. However, during a conversation about it with a counselor at the time, she gave me something to consider: with the irrational thinking I was experiencing at that time, it was maybe not a good option for me. I thought about it over a few weeks, and after much thoughtful consideration, I decided to no longer carry the gun-I voluntarily gave up the practice. I decided pas pour moi, (French) carrying the gun was not for me. I did not regret my decision, realizing that maybe carrying a loaded gun is not for everyone. Maybe not everyone can or should be gun packers. Maybe those people who show responsibility and self-discipline can make the choice and maybe that number of people is enough.

This was a turning point for me. The counselor did not coerce or nag me in any way. My freedom to choose was not threatened; she simply gave me something to consider… And consider it I did. I believe this is presents a good example of a way to honor freedom to choose and giving other individuals the time to reach their own conclusions and to let go of a worn out practice (for them) in their own way and on their own terms.

Snakes, microbes, spiders, guns… Reconsider the logic, and if your mind is in freak out mode and fueled by fear, chances are it is not thinking logically or rationally.

-Owen

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