When I was 7 years old, my cousins thought it would be funny to show me Nightmare on Elm Street, the horror film with Freddy Kreuger. I was afraid of the dark and being alone for many years after, with constant nightmare of someone coming to get me. To be honest, these types of fears haunted me for years and were perpetuated by other scary movies I felt pressured to watch in the media.
In this episode, I discuss why I don’t watch scary, horror or psychologically disturbing films. I discuss how our minds don’t know the difference between what we are watching vs what we are in (hence why the porn industry is so big), how our thoughts become our beliefs which become our actions which become our realities and why the scenes from these movies/ shows will last in your subconscious for a lifetime.
If you’ve been realizing that you just feel off after watching these movies/ shows and you haven’t been able to quite put it into words, this episode is for you. Share with anyone else who may benefit from ending the addiction to disturbing movies/ shows.
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Intro + Outro Music: Silent Ganges by Maneesh de Moor
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Episode 436: Why I Don’t Watch Scary Movies with Sahara Rose
By Sahara Rose
Namaste, it’s Sahara Rose and welcome back to The Highest Self Podcast, a place where we discuss what makes You, Your Soul’s Highest Evolvement.
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Sometimes when I tell friends this, they either really agree or they think it’s crazy! So, I wanted to do a little Podcast episode about this because this is a topic that I really don’t see many people talking about, and it’s pervasive in our culture – horror movies, these scary, scandalous, not only movies, but shows. And when I say scary, I’m not just talking about Grim horror movies, but things that just fuck with your brain; things that are really scandalous or deceitful, or dark, and the impact that it has on our subconscious.
So, when you look at spirituality at its roots, regardless of what spiritual system you’re looking at, we can all agree that our thoughts create our reality, and our thoughts are comprised of experiences that we have.
Now, our mind does not know the difference between an experience that we are actually having vs. one that we are watching.
So, for example, if you’re watching someone have sex, your body creates a response, that’s what pornography is about; or if you’re watching someone eat; or if I tell you, right now, imagine I’m slicing a lemon and you’re sucking on this lemon and just imagine the juice dripping down your mouth, right now, your mouth is probably salivating.
So, our minds actually have a hard time distinguishing what’s actually happening to us vs. what we are watching or even imagining, right? That’s why, people have wet dreams, you know.
So, this can happen on both positive front, the pleasure front, but it can also happen on the negative.
So, our society has become so obsessed with dark, horror and scary films, I believe because of, just, the trauma that has been inflicted upon us as a society and culture, and then also, individually, that has been suppressed for so long that like desires like.
So, often times, when there is unprocessed trauma, which we all have to various degrees, we desire or crave to see those very things that make us feel that same way. So, if there are deep feelings of shame within you, you may seek experiences or seek to watch things that make you feel more shameful; or if there is deep fear within you, you may watch things or even put yourself in situations that perpetuate more fear. So, like attracts like, this is really the basis of Ayurveda and many different spiritual and even health systems.
So, you create what you see; your thoughts become your reality. So, why would you choose to put thoughts in your mind, that are not only not helpful, but extremely dark and harmful? Why would you put thoughts in your mind that are based off of, often times, it’s a woman, home alone, being perpetrated by a man, or it’s a friend that stabbed you in the back? Even a lot of these drama-filled shows, and sometimes I watch those, I watched them before, there was this Indian show that I was watching and all I could think about was “Why was he cheating on her and why weren’t they communicating? Wait, why? These people don’t exist! Why are their problems now my problems?” But my mind could not differentiate, my mind thought these were friends that I knew, these were situations that I’m in. Especially if you are an empath, you are a highly sensitive person, you are someone who is very intuitive, we have an even further capacity to feel what other people are feeling, so when we’re watching these shows where there is a great amount of lying and harm and deceit and pain and suffering, we are feeling it at a greater capacity to those who have numbed themselves.
And truthfully, we all are empaths, we all feel things that other people are feeling, it’s just to what degree have you become immune to it?
So, someone that watches a lot of really dark movies and shows all the time, they may think “Oh, I don’t even react, I don’t even get scared, it’s funny to me”, but that’s not a good sign. If someone getting stabbed and murdered and bleeding and raped and assaulted doesn’t trigger something in you, that’s a really bad sign that you have become numb to some of the most grave, horrific acts that are possible on this planet.
If we have become desensitized to that, then we are we as humanity? If we can just see people be killed and raped on TV and not have a response, how are we being conditioned? Why are we being conditioned to think that that’s normal, to not have a response to those kinds of things? And the truth is, a lot of people, they don’t; a lot of people brush it off, and that’s because their nervous systems have just gotten so used to seeing so much abuse and suffering, a lot of it being from movies, not even their actual lives, but also, their actual lives that we just stop responding.
And this is actually the dorsal nervous system that’s reacting at this time. The dorsal nervous system is when we are at this place where there’s so much suffering that we, not beyond freeze, we shut down, we just stop responding, we become numb. And if you think about a zebra that’s running away from a lion, first it’s hyper-aroused, it’s running away, it’s running away, it doesn’t want to see it, but then when the lion gets it and starts eating it, it has to just to disassociate.
And that’s what’s happening as a society, we are disassociating because a lot of the things that we see again and again and again are so painful and harmful, and some of these things, we have no choice but to see because they are things that are happening in society, in the news, in the media, which also uses the same thing. When we see something that’s really scary, our minds can’t help but hyper-focus on it. The reason why is because it’s evolutionary. If there was a murderer that came into my village and I ignored it, then guess what, I’m going to get killed.
So, the mind has been trained to look at that thing that’s a potential threat, to potential danger, and hyper-fixate on it.
So, that’s why, sometimes, you might even see, when you’re on social media, sometimes on TikTok, these dark TikToks about horrible things come on, but my mind can’t look away. So, the reason why your mind can’t look away, it’s that deep, evolutionary conditioning that we have, that is there to serve our good.
You know, our nervous systems are primed this way to support us. You know, they’re there because they want us to survive, but the difference is, that thing that I’m watching on TikTok is actually not happening in my reality, but my body thinks it is, so my body reacts as if I just saw that thing right in front of me and I might be next.
So, even though my conscious mind is saying “Oh, I’m just watching this on my phone, it’s entertainment for me”, it’s trying to come up with ways of rationalizing why I want to watch this thing and why it’s not so bad for me because it’s actually addicted to it, but subconsciously, my body is responding. And there have been studies to show the ways that people’s bodies respond when they’re watching horror movies, it responds as if that thing is happening right in front of you.
So, would you want Saw to happen right in front of you? Would you want to see Freddie Kruger right in front of you? And my references are really old movies because I don’t even know what comes out these days because I have protected myself.
And you know, this is a conversation that my husband and I keep going back and forth on because he likes more of these dark, thriller movies and I keep telling him how it can really fuck with your subconsciousness. And he loves film, and for him, he’s like “No, I just love the cinematography of it and I love the story of it, and I love this.” But sometimes I’ll witness him, he’ll watch on his headphones so I don’t need to hear it, I’ll just watch his body, how’s his body responding as he’s watching whatever this thing is, and I see how his body tenses up and how he’s on the edge and how he’s a little bit shaking and nervous, even though he doesn’t even notice that his body’s doing this.
So, this is that subconscious experience that we’re having like we are in the film, we are in, whether it’s the porn or whether it’s the horror scene, our bodies think we are in the experiences that we are seeing. Our bodies do not know what TV and TikTok are, they just know that if “I’m seeing something, it’s happening”.
So, with that, if you genuinely know that everything you are exposing yourself to is becoming a part of your subconscious, which is becoming the quality of your thoughts; your thoughts is becoming the quality of your beliefs; your beliefs are becoming the quality of your actions; your actions are becoming the quality of your life, your relationships, your career, your self-love, your joy, your peace, your liberation. Do you want those scenes, that you are seeing, to be part of that? If you are watching something that you do not want to live in that reality, don’t watch it!
And again, you may say “I find it entertaining” or “I don’t know, I just can’t look away”, give love to that part of your nervous system that is addicted to watching this. And we have to stop it at the root because once we start watching, it’s very hard to look away because our minds are saying “If I turn away, I might be next”.
So, it’s to end the loop, it’s to end the addiction. We can become very addicted to fear and that is really why horror and thriller movies are as big as they are. And throughout the past couple of years, with the pandemic, there has been a huge rise in a number of these shows that are particularly dark, I’m not even going to say their names. And the reason why is because we are living in this feeling of collective fear, especially during 2020, that we wanted to see something to hyper-fixate on this emotion.
Emotions want to be felt, so when you feel, subconsciously, fearful and you put yourself in the situation where you’re very openly fearful, that fear is being felt. So, why we want to watch these movies is because we want to feel that feeling that we are subconsciously feeling, but we’re disassociating ourselves from.
However, we’re doing it in a shadow way. Yes, dive into your fears, but you watching a horror movie of someone being mutilated is not diving into your fears, it’s actually perpetuating your fears; it’s actually distracting you from what it is that you’re actually afraid of by pointing the finger and watching something else to feel the fear but not the actual thing that you are afraid of.
So, if you want to face your fears, yes, this is where it’s at, this is what shadow work is about, but go into the thing that you’re actually afraid of; go into the thing that’s holding you back from living your best life; go into your fear of being judged; your fear of being abandoned; your fear of failing; your fear of being unlovable; your fear of never finding your partner; your fear of feeling unworthy. Those are the actual fears that all of us are sitting with at some extent. And those fears want to be felt, they want to be experienced, and true liberation happens on the other side of that, but by pushing it away and then focusing on something else to be afraid of, that fear, that we’re hiding in the corner, it’s just going to get bigger and bigger and bigger.
It’s like the boogeyman, if you really want to watch some horror movies, go into your subconscious and look at what’s stored in there. And then once you look at it, you’re like “Oh, wow, this doesn’t actually have a hold over me”, “Oh wow, this was actually love that wanted to be seen”, “Oh wow, this is my hurt inner child or my inner teenager or my inner voice that feels wounded”. And as you do this deep shadow work, trauma healing, you stop being attracted to watching these horror, thriller, psychological, manipulative films because you don’t want to feel that way anymore, it’s no longer a vibrational match for you, you’re like “Wait, why would I want to go back to feeling that way? But feeling someone else’s fear and anger and sadness, why would I want to do that? Because I feel so good right now, I feel so joyful, I feel like I am creating my own reality so why would I want to give it up to this cheap feeling of entertainment that these horror movies give me? But then, the hours and days and months that these images last in my subconscious”, because, let’s be real, no matter how old you are, those images, you have flashbacks to images of things that you have watched on TV. Why would you want to have a flashback, a trauma flashback, of something that you didn’t even go through? There is enough, in this lifetime, for us to heal from, why would we add more to it?
So, I’m really passionate about this because I go back to when I was 13 years old and it was the cool thing to do to watch horror movies, or even before that, honestly. I remember my cousins were visiting from Iran and I was 7 years old and they thought it would be funny to play Freddie Kruger, Nightmare on Elm Street, and how much, especially as a sensitive child, that horrified me from a cellular level, it scared me so much, I couldn’t sleep at night because I was so afraid that Freddie Kruger would come with his big nails across my mattress and kill me.
And honestly, it sounds kind of funny, now maybe, because it’s like “Oh, of course he’s not going to get you”, but when you’re a 7-year-old child, your imagination is so active, which is how we’re meant to be – a lot of the reason why we have shut off our imaginations, our intuitions, our clairvoyance, our claircognizance, is because we were exposed to such scary things, that it felt too scary to imagine. Because I watched that movie, I turned off part of my intuition and imagination, because every single time I would go there, I would be so afraid. I had to sleep with the lights on for 2 years, I had nightmares, and I still have nightmares, often, not from Freddie Kruger, but I had nightmares for a very long time in my childhood because I was exposed to those things.
And then, again, in middle school, the movie The Ring, that was the big thing and it was almost cool if you could watch scary movies, and you’re not afraid of scary movies, you’re such a mature adult, but then, every single time I was alone in my TV room, and that staticky TV would go on, I would be so horrified. And that made me, as a woman, to be afraid of being alone, it made me afraid of the night, it made me afraid of my own company.
And so many of us are afraid of tapping into our true nature, of meditation, of breathwork, of healing, because of these subconscious fears that have happened due to horror movies. It has made us, and I believe it was probably put there on purpose, to make us afraid of being alone with ourselves, because the moment that you’re alone with yourself, whether you’re in the bathroom, looking in the mirror, you’re afraid that someone might be behind you. And it’s always a woman at home, alone, who they make the victim, which is repeating that cycle, that, as a woman, you are in danger. So, what does that do? It makes women choose to be in partnerships so they don’t have to be alone.
I know so many women, they’re like “I am afraid of living by myself, I don’t know what to do”, there are so many women out there who are in marriages and relationships, simply because they’re afraid to be alone.
Now, can I blame that 100% on horror movies? No, because there are true horrors that happen to women alone, and that is a real thing that’s happening and a huge menace in our society, but I would say that we are exposed to it at a much younger age and at a much higher level, when every single time you would go to a movie theatre, they would play you ten different trailers, a lot of which were scary movies. Even if it was a comedy, you were shown scary movies, “Why am I shown this? I didn’t opt into seeing a scary movie, but I’m being shown one?”
Again, it’s that conditioning and it’s because the horror film industry is the most lucrative because they know that once they show you that scary thing, you will be addicted because of that part of your subconscious that feels like it needs to know what the threat is going to be. And this has created a culture where we are so afraid of our intuition, we are so afraid of our imaginations, when we are so afraid of being alone with ourselves.
So, all in all, do I recommend watching scary movies? Absolutely not! I think that you can watch movies to your discretion, if you are genuinely finding joy in these, keep going for it, but I would ask yourself why you’re finding joy in seeing people be killed and slaughtered. I mean, this is something to really question and journal upon, to ask why you are wanting to watch these things, and also journal upon, maybe, how are the ways that watching these movies have impacted you, because sometimes we don’t realize, because we’re so numb and we’re so immune to it that we don’t realize how it has made on edge and fearful.
And I will say that, yes, our society is still not safe, and a lot of the reason why us women are on edge is because there criminals out there and there are scary things, and I am not speaking about not sharing, often scary things that do happen to women in our society, I do think it’s important to know the truth of what happens, such as being in parking lots by yourself, or trespassing and just women being alone, and we are, often times, victimized by people, and especially of egotistical, narcissistic men in our society, 100%. But do we need to add upon the trauma of things that are not actually happening, of things that someone just made up (most often a man) to continually perpetuate this wound that is deep in our subconscious and make us more fearful of being in our power?
So, these are questions for you to really sit with and to find your answer to, but I just wanted to share my own experience. I believe that I manifest better because I’m not watching these scary movies, I have a much more clearer subconscious, I can be alone and at home with myself, I can dive deep into my subconscious. And while I still, definitely, do have some images of these scary movies in my mind, or scary things that I’ve seen, I’m not 100% cleared from them, I don’t think we ever can be, because, actually, we remember every single thing that we’ve seen in this lifetime, even if it’s stored into our subconscious, but I’m choosing to not put more of that into my mind. I am choosing to have boundaries. I am choosing to not watch things out of people-pleasing because other people want to watch them, or I think I’ll be cool if I watch them, or I want to talk about things that other people are talking about, and everyone’s watching XYZ show, so I’m just going to watch it too, even though I don’t want to watch it (which a lot of people do). And I’m going to be selective around every single thing I put into my subconscious, just as I’m selective of every single thing I bring into my reality, because I am the creatrix of my experience and so are you!
So, I hope this Episode was one that inspired you to see horror, thriller, psychological, manipulative movies in different ways. I will say this also goes with a lot of what we see in pop culture, a lot of what the media wants us to focus on, aka Johnny Depp and Amber Heard trial; aka what’s happening with the Kardashians; aka the Will Smith slap, those things are continually shown and perpetuated in our media because they want us to focus on these things, to distract us from what’s really going on.
So, I’m not saying live in a bubble, I’m saying dive deep into the truth, but not manipulated realities that our media is pushing upon us to actually control us, and they control us through fear.
So, share this Episode with anyone in your life who maybe is watching scary movies or you’ve been having this kind of conversation and it’s just reaffirming what you’ve felt, or even just your social media communities of people who might benefit from this wisdom, it may actually cause them to stop watching these things, stop showing it to their kids, especially. Please, please, please, don’t show these movies to your kids, I know there are many adults out there that get a kick out of scaring their children, which is so heartbreaking to me, because I have been on the other side of that, as a child, that they thought it would be really funny to scare me and it really created trauma. You can have trauma from things that you have seen, small T trauma, 100%. So, please don’t make it your funny thing that you do to show kids scary movies because you want them to be afraid, that’s manipulation and that’s extremely harmful for a child’s subconscious and mental development.
So, let’s connect back to Source, there are enough things in the world to be stressed and afraid of, let’s choose to create the things that we want to see more of in this world. Let’s choose to focus on media that inspires us or, genuinely, entertains us and makes us laugh or makes us think or makes us see things from a higher perspective.
There are so many beautiful shows being developed out there, I know, I definitely want to develop one, one day as well, that will allow us to actually feel better after watching the show. I mean, wouldn’t that be crazy, to actually feel better and not be stressed out after watching a show? I’m waiting for the day!
So, please share this Episode with anyone, with your social media audience, anyone that will resonate with it, these are the ways that we can make these small shifts that create massive ripple effects in society.
So, if you loved this Episode, please leave me a review and I will send you back my Free Discover Your Soul’s Purpose 5-Day Course. Just leave a review for the Podcast, let me know what you loved about it, let me know any question you have that you would love to see future Episodes about, and I will send you my Discover Your Soul’s Purpose 5-Day Course. Just take a screenshot and email it over to me at [email protected] Again, that’s [email protected] and you can find that link in the show notes. So, take a screenshot, send it over to me and I’ll send you over the course.
Thank you so much for being here today. Namaste.
Episode 436: Why I Don’t Watch Scary Movies with Sahara Rose
By Sahara Rose