‘NO passion so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear. ‘
Edmund Burke: 1757. A Philosophical Enquiry into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and Beautiful
Deep seated in the human psyche is a mascochistic delight in fear. Fear of nature was originally expressed through the fear of ‘wrathful gods’ but while science to an extent has assuaged our fears it has not eliminated them completely. We still seem to need the thrill of subjective fear, despite our objective knowledge, and this has been well harnessed by Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming which demands that we make our modern version of sacrifices to Mother Nature through Carbon Taxes and the like.
‘The genius of civilisation rests on its capacity to turn our aggression against ourselves. It is not overt terror that succeeds, but the covert terror that is internalised in the form of conscience – that is the secret of the success of civilisation.’ Shadia B. Drury, 2004. Terror and Civilization: Christianity, Politics and the Western Psyche . P107/108