Consider how fear validates lack at the physical level by motivating the fulfillment of physical needs. That physical sense of fear influences choice-making by effectively removing options. Fewer options means more time available for fulfilling needs. That’s critical in life-or-death choices where use of time makes that choice.
From an instinctual perspective, choice may be entirely based on compliance to symbolic representations and pattern recognition. Thus, my choices defend my certainty of the reality of my symbolic representations.
Fear is the driving force of compliance – an intense, unquestionable obedience that motivates all need fulfillment.
If the instinctive world had a motto, it would be, “Do what you know!” Perhaps conscious choice threatens that knowing by questioning the certainty of the motto.
Because of the primal nature of instinct, questioning the motto will initiate defense. Fear represents preemptive defense of the motto, preventing me from even asking by returning my consciousness to the instinctive state.
Questioning is only half the equation – consideration is the other.
The Choice-Defense Algorithm
The choice-defense algorithm is a filtering process. Perception of an option’s value and immediacy affects the algorithm. For example, a high-stakes option will eliminate all lower-stakes options from the competition. My investment in fear artificially elevates an option’s value to higher-stakes. Repeated use of a certain fear in choice-making results in a bias in its favor. Thus, raising the stakes on certain options as they appear.
When I feel I have time to consider many options, I’ll filter them through a value-based mental/emotional consideration sieve. This filtering process is steeped in instinct. I already have a bias and preconception of the outcome of the process. In other words, it’s not a choice, it’s a defense algorithm!
The algorithm takes into account each option’s relative characteristics – based on a knowing. Like choosing between chocolate or vanilla ice cream – I’ll select the option I already believe is best – a bias. This because we select through symbolism. For example, I compare vanilla to chocolate in symbols I perceive as color, taste, temperature, etc. I then defend my “choice” with an explanation or reason for why it is better or best.
It’s an unfair comparison process because I’ve added biased value to MY selection compared to others. Competition and defense – the cardinal characteristics of my bubble of limited awareness.
Fear adds preemptive defense value to the already biased choice-defense algorithm, returning choices to the realm of instinct.