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Thread: Fear

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    Furry Authority RedCheetah's Avatar
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    Neil Peart heard from a man that fear is what governs our actions, not hope or love or good intentions. We go to work for fear of not having money, we help each other for fear they might not do the same for us if we don't, etc. He gave it some thought and after observing those around him, he found it to be pretty true. He then wrote a 4 part series of songs about it, breaking it down into 3 different kinds of fear. Fear of yourself, fear as a weapon, and fear as control. It's cynical to think about it in that perspective but if you think about it, every facet of society is based on fear.

    What do you think? Is everything really governed by a fear of something or do we make our actions on some other level?
    "A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects." - Time Enough For Love, by Robert Heinlein

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    As in, fear your girlfriend would break up with you if you didn't do so-and-so for her? Fear that your neighbour would murder your dog if you didn't volunteer to mind his dog while he is away this weekend?

    Yes. That sort of adds up. Odd to think like that though. I mean, am I posting in this thread now, for fear that I won't be able to post in it later?

    This thread will eventually make me paranoid.

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    Physics controls everything. Choice is an illusion, but you can still 'make' the choice. It won't actually be a choice, but it'll feel like one, and that's what matters to your mind.

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    The Pyro Politician NidoKING's Avatar
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    If all that governs us is fear, then what does it matter? Or if its all physics, what's the point? I'd like to think that there's more to life than that.
    I can pretty honestly say that my actions aren't controlled by fear.
    I put no stock in religion. By the word religion I have seen the lunacy of fanatics of every denomination be called the will of god. I have seen too much religion in the eyes of too many murderers. Holiness is in right action, and courage on behalf of those who cannot defend themselves, and goodness. What God desires is here [points to head] and here [points to heart] and what you decide to do every day, you will be a good man - or not.

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    Focus on the illusion of choice and everything will be fine

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    The Pyro Politician NidoKING's Avatar
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    Illusion?
    I put no stock in religion. By the word religion I have seen the lunacy of fanatics of every denomination be called the will of god. I have seen too much religion in the eyes of too many murderers. Holiness is in right action, and courage on behalf of those who cannot defend themselves, and goodness. What God desires is here [points to head] and here [points to heart] and what you decide to do every day, you will be a good man - or not.

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    That's what choice is, but your mind doesn't notice.

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    The Pyro Politician NidoKING's Avatar
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    Mm, okay. Well I'm going to think about going to think about going to bed.
    I put no stock in religion. By the word religion I have seen the lunacy of fanatics of every denomination be called the will of god. I have seen too much religion in the eyes of too many murderers. Holiness is in right action, and courage on behalf of those who cannot defend themselves, and goodness. What God desires is here [points to head] and here [points to heart] and what you decide to do every day, you will be a good man - or not.

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    keen as mustard The Lacemaker's Avatar
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    Although fear will forever be one of the greatest incentives to man, it is not the only. Human beings are capable of selflessness, as rare as it may be, and our actions are not, but possibly can, be governed by only fear alone. A man could easily be of cowardice, his actions only based on his fears. Even so, he is still able to act of altruism, of charity, and cast dominating fear aside. We cannot forget that man is able to work of his own accord, not a machine to serve his self survival and only that. But because of the strength our fears hold over us, it might seem all choices we make are out of fear.

    Mind I refer to the Heaven and Hell discussion, although do ignore the absentminded and baseless probability figures, in that Heaven and Hell has nothing to do whatsoever with spirituality or holiness. The donkey will forever fear the stick and chase the carrot, as does man. To live life helping others only with the intention of a better afterlife is of the same callousness as if you were to push a friend off the side of a cliff out of paranoia. The belief is driven by fear, by selfishness. And because of that, it is also out of human instinct.

    Man is still capable of selflessness, if even so rare in life. We do have the choice to break from this governing fear. Even so, it will remain one of the strongest incentives to mankind and many of our actions can be chosen by a need for self-survival.

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    In short, selfishness and altruism both control humanity, but selfishness will always be ahead.

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    Human beings are capable of selflessness, as rare as it may be, and our actions are not, but possibly can, be governed by only fear alone. A man could easily be of cowardice, his actions only based on his fears. Even so, he is still able to act of altruism, of charity, and cast dominating fear aside.
    The fear of extinction of one's race is greater than the fear of extinction of the self. That is why parents will sacrifice for their children - organisms are programmed psychologically to pass on their genes. Any kind of self preservation, at its basest form, is just to preserve the self long enough to reproduce. This is why the image of an adult sacrificing himself to save a child is noble and the image of a child sacrificing himself to save an old man is nearly inconceivable. Also, most(all?) people donate to charity because it makes them feel good about themselves. There is really no true altruism.

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    Genetically speaking there is altruism, but it does indeed exist only for a selfish purpose.

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    keen as mustard The Lacemaker's Avatar
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    Then perhaps I choose to live in the vain hope that man will one day have the capacity to do a deed out of the selflessness of without a thought of gain for themself. I may be asking too much of mankind.

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    It is. That's why communism will never ever work, despite how nice it would be. It demands selflessness, which just won't happen. Capitalism works by using greed as a motive, and that always gets results.

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    Fear is a horrible thing, but in some ways it really does control everything we do in some way or another. It's rather sad, but I guess it's just the way life is.

    Then again, a lot of these fears tend to have deep instinctual roots. So it could very well just be our nature as an animal to act in those ways.
    When the Devil is too busy
    And Death's a bit too much
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    keen as mustard The Lacemaker's Avatar
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    To address the issue at hand we must answer this - is the human body capable of free will? Many argue it not, and from that perhaps our cherished liberty, our freedom and justice isn't nearly as significant as we seem to make it out to be. Take fear for example, if we argue that all actions and decisions we make is governed by fear then we are unable to act out of free will. Maybe to some extent a sense of free will partakes, but if all choices as humans are controlled by only fear then we do not have the principle of free will.

    However, I would aver that man is not controlled by only his fear. What sad lives we must lead if only in the name of fear. Perhaps it is naive of me to live continuing to hope we, as the human race, have the ability to feel so much more.

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    A low to mid functioning sociopath. Shadow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedCheetah View Post
    Neil Peart heard from a man that fear is what governs our actions, not hope or love or good intentions. We go to work for fear of not having money, we help each other for fear they might not do the same for us if we don't, etc. He gave it some thought and after observing those around him, he found it to be pretty true. He then wrote a 4 part series of songs about it, breaking it down into 3 different kinds of fear. Fear of yourself, fear as a weapon, and fear as control. It's cynical to think about it in that perspective but if you think about it, every facet of society is based on fear.

    What do you think? Is everything really governed by a fear of something or do we make our actions on some other level?
    I fear nothing, except maybe an army of gay people. Nah, I'd just kill them. I fear nothing, Fear fears me.

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    Like I've said, free will is an illusion.

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    Whatever, that debate has been and passed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Lacemaker View Post
    To address the issue at hand we must answer this - is the human body capable of free will? Many argue it not, and from that perhaps our cherished liberty, our freedom and justice isn't nearly as significant as we seem to make it out to be. Take fear for example, if we argue that all actions and decisions we make is governed by fear then we are unable to act out of free will. Maybe to some extent a sense of free will partakes, but if all choices as humans are controlled by only fear then we do not have the principle of free will.

    However, I would aver that man is not controlled by only his fear. What sad lives we must lead if only in the name of fear. Perhaps it is naive of me to live continuing to hope we, as the human race, have the ability to feel so much more.
    people decisions more of less are based entirely off how their psyche developed through experiences within their first few years of life. there is a level of freewill though, but people are for the most part shaped how they will be their entire life by their parents, environment, and experiences up till age 7 or so.

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    cogito ergo doleo Keke Le Cat's Avatar
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    Fear does govern most of our lives. It does govern a lot of what I do for my baby and my husband.

    I realized this some time in the past. While I was pregnant I realized I don't do the housework because I want to, I do it for fear of what people will think.

    Most of everything everyone does is for appearances and respectability. Almost all actions are taken for fear of what the herd will think if they change the color of their wool. Fricken sheeple man, we're all sheeple.

    If your actions aren't governed by fear it's usually guilt. Most people are instilled with a concept of guilt very young. Usually when I do anything really purely selfish I am wracked by oceans of guilt. It's gotten to where I don't even cook a dinner that only I enjoy. I make sure it's something my husband likes as well or I feel huge crashing waves of guilt and I do not enjoy it anyway.

    I can give you an example of when fear does not govern my actions. Around 3am my son usually cries for a snack. He is old enough that he could easily and safely go for 8+ hours without food, but he loves to eat. So I get up in the middle of the night and make him a bottle every night.

    He isn't going to be negatively affected if I do not, I do it because I love him, not because I am afraid he will suffer if I do not.

    I am sure everyone can think of examples of things they do because they want to, or out of love, not simply fear.

    Not to mention the fact that we post on this forum and probably others. That is a purely selfish act.

    If you dissect every action and get right down to it, probably the vast majority of your life is governed by fear, guilt or fear of guilt.

    EDIT: Now that I think about it, I feed my baby in the middle of the night to avoid guilt. I wouldn't be able to sleep knowing he went back to sleep hungry. So I guess that action is governed by fear of guilt.

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    Does anyone else here hate psychiatrists?

    Anyway, I'm not so sure of this fear thing. I have Cystic Fibrosis (and diabetes for good measure), and as a result I'm supposed to do x, y and z in order to avoid that most undesirable of events, death. However, if I'm tired or in a hurry, I'm more than ready to skip taking insulin. I mean, it's not like it's gonna hurt me, right? Well, they say it will, but it hasn't so far. The CF thing also comes in on this. Do I really want to stay up for another hour coughing, or would I rather skip straight to the nebs? Again, it's meant to be bad for me, but I've never come off worse as a result. Perhaps I just have a more positive attitude towards risk than other people. Whatever, I know I don't do things out of fear. Not falling asleep for another hour is not going to be fatal: I proved that to myself by staying up for 24 hours for a bet. True, I was writing RPGs in my head for half an hour without noticing, but still, that's not exactly a sign of impending death. If we ran on fear, or guilt, or any of the more negative emotions, we'd listen to every news report and scientific discovery and do absolutely nothing. It's wishes and desires that run these things. I want to stay up. Why? Because I can write a story, or I could talk to a friend, or I could get an easy target on Dark Throne. There is no fear there, because I could do all those things tomorrow too.

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    cogito ergo doleo Keke Le Cat's Avatar
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    I don't necessarily love psychiatry either, but I came to the conclusion that most of my actions are determined by fear/guilt without it.

    Perhaps you just have nothing to fear because you haven't been in a diabetic coma or etc? Witnessing bad experiences can cause you to be more aware of the consequences. Not to be an agist but you may not have experienced the consequences of neglecting certain aspects of your life. Being aware of repercussions may not be enough.

    Until you live alone and rely on yourself or have others relying on your ability to provide for them you won't have the same fear/guilt. You are being sheltered and taken care of by others who take the burden of that fear/guilt for you.

    When you have bills and responsibilities the center of your life completely changes. If it comes down to going to sleep because you have to be well rested for work or else you will get fired and lose your home and thus become a hobo... using the neb takes on a completely different meaning.

    Or maybe you subconsciously have a death wish. DUN DUN DUN...

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    See, this is why I don't like psychiatrists. I know that when I start having to look after myself then yes, I will take on more responsibility. However, I'm not about to change my lifestyle just for something like that. I'll still be here, I'll still be spriting, and I'll still be awake at midnight. And I am not about to let fear run any part of my life, because then whatever illusion I have of choice will be lost.

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    cogito ergo doleo Keke Le Cat's Avatar
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    Wanna bet? Remember this conversation in 10 years. WINK

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