Life Without Fear. Bertrand Russell Essay. Reintroduced

PSRemeshChandra By PSRemeshChandra, 8th Oct 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
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Fear is an ancient feeling of human beings, the right application of which saved mankind from taking too many risks and helped facilitate the continued existence of mankind. Actually fear is the essential pre-requisite to courage. But in the modern day world which is not as danger-prone as the ancient primitive world had been, man fears to even release his breath. World famous philosopher Bertrand Russell analyzes the operation of fear.

Fear can be avoided through the right kind of education.

Bertrand Russell was a British philosopher who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1950. Principia Mathematica, History Of Western Philosophy, and Marriage And Morals are a few of his famous writings. ‘Life Without Fear’ is an extract from his book ‘New Hopes For A Changing World.’ He is discussing how human life is ruled by fear and how fear can be got rid of. He says, fear prevails over man’s dealings with nature, with other men and with himself. Russell is of the opinion that fear can be avoided in human life through the right kind of education.

Fear is entirely different from the rational apprehension of danger.

Fear of danger, fear of no food, fear of death, fear of destitution and fear of other human beings are natural to all men. Fear is a natural basic reaction which is common to all men and animals. But, Russell says, it has no ground. Fear is a kind of foolishness which makes man unwise in his dealings with nature, with other men and with his self. Fear has no rational basis. Fear and the feeling of danger are different. Feeling of danger is logical when a danger really exists. It enables man to think out what kind of action can be taken against the possible danger. Therefore, feeling of danger is desirable. But unreasonable fear prevents people from admitting danger and taking wise precaution against it. A pre-knowledge of danger enables man to adopt different kinds of treatment for different kinds of dangers.

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author avatar Retired
1st Jan 2013 (#)

Interesting exploration of fear ...

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author avatar PSRemeshChandra
8th Jan 2013 (#)

Fear not, dear Rama Devi Nina,

Fear isn’t going any where,

It is one ancient primitive bird

Flitting across man’s mortal sky.

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author avatar PSRemeshChandra
12th Aug 2018 (#)

I am deleting a few paragraphs from this post. If you read this post after July 2018, you will not be viewing the earlier original version. The full post can be read in my blog Sahyadri Books Trivandrum in Blogspot Dot Com.

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