“It’s a luxury to be understood.” Ralph Waldo Emerson. A mission to understand. Know thyself.
We are discussing horror, and specifically horror stories. I don’t mean horror literature necessarily, nor horror movies. Stories run deeper than any modern media, and horror stories are perhaps one of the oldest, if not the oldest sort of story ever told.
Horror goes back to the start of language, as we have always had a tendency to feel anxious for our safety, and be concerned about what might be present just beyond the range of what we can see. It’s really very natural. Don’t you think so?
Like “here be dragons” on old maps. Yes.
Even if there is nothing to be afraid of, we seek it out in stories. Exactly.
Fear can be exciting. Indeed. Fear itself is a natural part of our awareness, and we do need it. We need to have a relationship to fear, but how do we relate to it in today’s society?
Society needs to have a way to sanitize it, censoring it to a degree. It likes low grade fear we can’t combat, or uses it to control people’s thinking.
We lock the doors. Do things that make us feel safer.
Now we aren’t afraid of everything. Some very common and clearly dangerous things tend to fall out of our day to day considerations. A simple part of why we don’t really fear the obvious is this. Our every instinct is geared to preserve us against any obvious danger to our flesh and blood. We don’t have to think about avoiding speeding vehicles normally, thus it doesn’t trigger the heightened awareness that goes with the first component of horror stories, terror.
I think we are born with those basic survival instincts like fear of falling or fire? That’s correct, or fear of blood.
A baby won’t crawl if it sees a space in front of him. For fear of falling, and at early stages they won’t crawl into a deep shadow, because they can’t adequately distinguish it from an empty space. This is perhaps why fear of the dark is on some level present in all of us. We have a feeling of being able to fall anywhere we move.
Or touch something or be touched by something nasty, the unknown. Pretty much at first, the only thing we are ready to accept is the touch of human skin, though in rare cases not even that is true. I was one such.
I’m still afraid of the dark! It’s natural, and nothing to be embarrassed about. Those who aren’t afraid of the dark are just well trained.
I’m both afraid and comforted in the dark. I am generally comforted in the dark, because it limits my overall sensory input, like turning the volume down on a blaring stereo.
I find sunlight to be too harsh. I like the long nights of winter. That is a natural instinct.
Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.