About fear

 Everything you want is on the other side of fear.

Jack Canfield

When asked what do they fear, some say that they are afraid of the unknown. Well, “let’s agree to disagree” (MIB 3). You cannot fear something you don’t know. You rather fear something when you know its capabilities, when you understand its power, when you understand what it can do to you. Back in the day, humans were afraid of the dark because many predators preferred to hunt during the night. Now there is no predator hiding under the bed or behind the door, so our fear of the dark is not necessary anymore. Unless you count the Boogeyman stories. Anyway, the dark makes us vulnerable because we know that there can be something that can hurt us.

The things we don’t know make us curious. Take a child, for example. He doesn’t have much experience with what being alive means. Imagine giving him a pair of scissors. He takes it because he wants to know what it is. He turns it from side to side and then he learns that it can be opened. He touches its blades and gets cut. The child will put the scissors down after learning that it can hurt him. He won’t pick it up again (or at least for a while) because he knows now that it can cause him pain. I believe that when humans discovered the fire they got pretty “crispy” at first before realizing that fire can hurt them. But at first, they were curious about it. So, the unknown doesn’t produce fear but gives birth to curiosity.

Fear is a normal and vital response to anything that shows a potential threat to our lives. But sometimes we can be afraid of things that don’t make any sense or things we don’t need to be afraid of.

Me and Fear… well… we’re not usually friends. When it comes, it comes full force. When I’m afraid of something I run the hell out. Everything inside me hides under a thick layer of the toughest skin imaginable. I lose any rational thought and I transform into a stupid cat that runs from one point to another without a direction. But! (yeah, there’s a but) I sometimes fear things I love. Like spiders. I absolutely love them! I can be around them, I can stay still and observe them, I can take a piece of paper and move them from one point to another (if the spider is really small), but never ever put one on me because all hell gets loose!

There are times when I like the feeling of being spooked. I enjoy watching horror movies. I like how the blood suddenly rushes through my body, the moment I keep my breath when some terrible thing happens, the way I squeeze the pillow, or the moment I hide my head under the blanket.

Fear is one of the strongest human emotions, if not the strongest. I think it is a shame to think that fear shows weakness for being such a powerful tool for our survival. Without it, we wouldn’t be able to protect ourselves. Without it, we would be incomplete. Look at how many wonderful things Fear created for us: horror movies, scary video games, Stephen King (or maybe Stephen King created Fear), horror books, and evolution.

I wanna see terror in their eyes. Fear is a great motivator, people. Use it.

Paris Geller, Gilmore Girls

2 Comments Add yours

  1. lynnfay73 says:

    Well, I usually agree but the unknown or how things will actually play out — even if you part of the deal–can cause enormous anxiety. Once you know what you have to deal with, even if it’s bad, you can usually deal with it. You can take action or adjust emotionally. But being in limbo is one of the hardest things for people to handle. Death for instance is an unknown if you are a religious person and it’s terrifying to most people, even with their faith. Which is why they cling to it. Limbo is a terrifying place to hang out generally. Because, again, you are usually in a spot where you can’t yet deal with anything, and the only thing left is worry. But I agree fear in the form of pain particularly is a good thing. It does prompt us to take a hand off a hot stove. Sometimes when limbo is self induced, it can cause us to finally move in a healthy direction. So fear/pain in that sense can be good and it can help to look at it that way. Being afraid to fail so you don’t ever try things is bad, so that feeling of being uncomfortable often is our way to finally address things. The impetus we might need to finally deal with things (I did everything I could to avoid public speaking, but then when my novel and short story collection was published, I had to start reading in public — which then moved me into being an adjunct professor — I wish I could say that totally erased the fear, it didn’t, but I did realize I could deal with the fear and that made me feel better about myself). But limbo when things are out of our control and we can only wait is truly terrifying.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. moonraven44 says:

      Yes, I see your point and I agree. With the death thing, people don’t actually fear death, but rather the disappearing part. They know that there are some possibilities (which they know of) that could happen after we die. Or they fear death because they still have so much more to do in this life.
      In many instances fear is only in our mind. Even when I’m aware of it, I still can’t get past it 😅

      Liked by 1 person

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