Fear is an ancient emotion. It is an emotion that has served and continues to protect humans by causing them to sense when they are being threatened. In prehistoric times, that meant being chased by lions, tigers, dinosaurs, and other humans out to do them harm.
As a species, we have advanced from being chased by animals. However, the emotion of fear remains strong. Contemporary definitions describe fear as: an unpleasant feeling triggered by the perception of danger, real or imagined.
The keyword I want to point out is “perception.” And far too many humans live fear and anxiety-ridden lives unnecessarily. The truth is that many fears are based on things imagined and not real.
Aristotle’s Thoughts About Fear
The Ancient Greeks had many ideas and explanations for the origins, mechanisms, and outcomes of fear and its close relative, anxiety. In fact, according to an article I recently came across, Aristotle felt that fear was the opposite of confidence.
To him, the world was reducible to pairs of opposites (hot and cold, wet and dry). It was also from his school of thought that we associate great men as those who suffer through fear and anxiety.
Great men and women are the ones who overcome fear’s effects. The cure for fear was to act in virtuous ways, including being courageous. The article went on to say that, “Aristotle did not advocate the pursuit of ‘fearlessness.’ To be fearless was a sign of true imbalance of the opposite life pairs discussed earlier. It was considered crazy to not fear the gods and the all-consuming influence they had on the environment.”
Our Emotions Guide Us
Our emotions are meant to guide us, and the feelings that fear and anxiety cause within are signals that can alert us to something that might be off but might also just be imagined. The only way to find out is to stop and really think about what is causing the feeling.
I agree with a subsequent article I found on the same website mentioned above. The author states, “Fear and anxiety are both integral emotions to the human experience. They act in similar and unique ways to keep our wits about us in situations where danger or failure is either a real or untested possibility. They can also be exaggerated and taken much too far.”
We must take the time to examine what causes the emotion of fear to find out if it’s real or imagined. Most men and women know when they feel happy, joyful, sad, excited, exhilarated, angry – but not all do. If you consider what causes you to feel any specific emotion, you have taken a step on a very interesting, exciting, and enlightening journey.
I Love To Help Men And Women Learn How To Be Their Very Best
We are afraid of things that we conjure up in our imaginations. We make up stories and scenarios that frighten us and prevent us from doing things that we would very much like to do.
Unless you are in a truly life-threatening situation, the feelings of fear and anxiety provoked in day-to-day life are typically conjecture. Fear is of the present moment.
Anxiety is fear about something imagined in the future. Getting to the source of those things that cause us to feel fear and/or anxiety and shining the light of truth on those ideas, helps dissipate and dissolve things that prevent most men and women from being their best.
Let me help you shine the light of truth on false emotions that apparently feel real to you.
First published on August 28, 2020
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