The Body At War

It was discovered in the trenches of World War I that combat fatigue isnít a test of character. Every soldier, if exposed long enough to artillery fire and deprived of rest, will become shell-shocked.

But in WWI there was always a home front where the shooting stopped. We arenít so fortunate today. Every news story about terrorism reminds us that all three factors exist at home: the threat is inescapable, attacks can come at random, and no individual has control over the outcome.

A kind of civilian battle fatigue has set in, and people who once felt aroused by threat are beginning to find the constancy of threat exhausting. We go through the motions of being on alert while the underlying reality is that alertness is hard to maintain even at minimal levels.

As unwelcome as it would be for the authorities to hear, the body at peace is stronger than the body at war. When you can free yourself of the random, uncontrollable stress that is always present, your body will start to be at peace.

Modern medicine has already discovered that love increases the human immune response. Love has the power to change our bodies as much as violence, but in a positive direction. People who feel loved live longer, have fewer colds, lower blood pressure, and lower cancer rates; and have fewer heart attacks.

Widowers who lose a spouse and begin to feel unloved and lonely suffer higher rates of all these afflictions, as well as a shorter life span. You cannot use stress, in the form of constant reminders about terror, to create peace in the body. The mechanisms simply arenít there.

Adapted from Peace Is the Way, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2005).

50 comments

Janine Hofmann
Janine H.4 years ago

Thank you very much for this interesting article. Much more people should read it.

K s Goh
KS Goh4 years ago

Thanks for the article.

Carol Reins
Carol Reins5 years ago

To Mike...so only your stress can be validated...lucky you!

Charles G.
Wilde Thange5 years ago

When a coiuntry is at constant war it' peace will not have any peace... plus our society is at constant war to repress our bodies and attempts win our hearts and minds to help them do it.

heather g.
heather g.5 years ago

When it comes to war, I often doubt whether we have evolved at all as a species.....

Jimena Balli
Jimena Balli5 years ago

For now I live in Afghanistan and it is so hard to deal with terrorism, you never know when something is going to happen. Usually by the end of the day I feel really exhausted, so I try to do yoga every day, and it really helps me a lot. Sometimes I wish this situation was easier

Shar F.
Sharon F.5 years ago

Why would anyone sign up to fight a war in Afghan or Iraq; countries that did not attack the USA. Critical thinking is sorely needed in this country.

Kathy K.
Kathy K.5 years ago

Thanks. Great article.

KL B.
KL Bennett5 years ago

Interesting!

Beverly, (that's my sister's name) take one day at a time...Life is truly worth living! Love, hugs and many, many blessings.

Carole H.
Carole H.5 years ago

Mike S. I dont know what you have had to endure, sounds like you have been stuck in a war zone. It is best not to let bitterness consume you and cause you anger, Remember, some people are too old or sick to travel or may not have the money to help but I am sure that their hearts are in the right place.