"From the thalamus, a part of the stimulus goes directly to the amygdala while another part is sent to the neocortex (the "thinking brain"). If the amygdala perceives a match to the stimulus, i.e., if the record of experiences in the hippocampus tells the amygdala that it is a fight, flight or freeze situation, then the amygdala triggers the HPA (hypothalmic-pituitary-adrenal) axis and hijacks the rational brain. This emotional brain activity processes information milliseconds earlier than the rational brain, so in case of a match, the amygdala acts before any possible direction from the neocortex can be received. If, however, the amygdala does not find any match to the stimulus received with its recorded threatening situations, then it acts according to the directions received from the neo-cortex. When the amygdala perceives a threat, it can lead that person to react irrationally and destructively.
Goleman states that "Emotions make us pay attention right now - this is urgent - and gives us an immediate action plan without having to think twice. The emotional component evolved very early: Do I eat it, or does it eat me?" The emotional response "can take over the rest of the brain in a millisecond if threatened." An amygdala hijack exhibits three signs: strong emotional reaction, sudden onset, and post-episode realization if the reaction was inappropriate.
Goleman later emphasised that "self-control is crucial ...when facing someone who is in the throes of an amygdala hijack" so as to avoid a complementary hijacking - whether in work situations, or in private life. Thus for example 'one key marital competence is for partners to learn to soothe their own distressed feelings...nothing gets resolved positively when husband or wife is in the midst of an emotional hijacking.' The danger is that 'when our partner becomes, in effect, our enemy, we are in the grip of an "amygdala hijack" in which our emotional memory, lodged in the limbic center of our brain, rules our reactions without the benefit of logic or reason...which causes our bodies to go into a "fight or flight" response'."
Basically a visual stimuli which is interpretated as threatening by the Organic Contextualization will make the Organic Contextualization override the Deterministic Contextualization. But this can be trained with various psychological techniques.