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There is plenty of violence for all the anti-violence, which is just more violence.

Terror and Horror in Horror


There is a difference between terror and horror. Terror is an unthinking reflex. We are terrified of loud noises or falling from high places. Certain things trigger instincts in us almost universally that set us off, sudden unexplained noises, that bump in the night, or motion that we can’t link to an observable object. It is perhaps the product of our genetic inheritance, a part of what it is to be homo-sapiens.

Terror is that fear of the unknown or unseen, and in stories it’s used to build up to the horror. The horror comes when you actually see it. Indeed, the story doesn’t actually come from the terror. Terror is just the window dressing for horror. Horror is right in front of you when it can’t be denied. Horror is a combination of fear and loathing, in Las Vegas or anywhere else.

The phrase “war on terror” springs to mind. I remember thinking that war is terror. Indeed. The terror in war is the intuition we have that someone can decide to make it at any time, and for any reason. The horror in war is the understanding that war is going on right now. You experience horror when you begin to reflect on the notion that people really thought killing each other would help something.

I think the reason we fight so much is that we are still a young species. It’s not different than other animals fighting over territory or mates. It is a bit different. We don’t fight for simple physical reasons. We don’t rely on our instincts. We even ignore them, or many fights would end much quicker than they do, and before anyone dies.

I don’t think the narrative of our species is biological. It’s more cultural. It’s basically insanity, too much brain, and too little clue on how to use it appropriately.

Our big brains get training wheels in classes like this. Is it terrifying to take off the training wheels, or horrific? It’s horrific, because when you take off the training wheels, you know for a fact that any outcome is possible.

Your thoughts are welcome. Be well friends.

Travis Saunders
Dragon Intuitive

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  1. Trilby Minotaur

    I’m reminded of the Kurt Vonnegut novel, Galapagos, in which an apocalypse is the outcome of humans having brains that are too big. (But only the beginning of the story.)

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