Saturday, March 4, 2017

Anger and Fear

I was once at a Paul Vunak seminar and he said there are two things that will make you not do what you have trained to do in a fight. Those two mind killers are fear and anger. That is not to say you are not going to win necessarily, but you are not going to do the efficient practical things you trained to do if you fly into a rage or freeze up in terror. Bear in mind this is not the same as aggression. You can be aggressive without being angry. A lion taking down a zebra is not angry at the zebra. It is very aggressive but it is not mad at the zebra, that zebra is dinner and lions love dinner. Michael Jordan was very aggressive on the basketball court but he was not angry about it. When you get angry or scared it is difficult to act rationally and intelligently. It is easy to do something you will regret when you are in that mind state because your primal instincts and id takes over.

I feel like we are presently as a culture acting almost completely on fear and anger. Listen to all of our political discussions and policies that are being proposed. They are almost exclusively coming from places of fear and anger. A lot of them seem to be based more on feelings and emotions, rather than facts and what is actually going on. People are exceptionally angry and we are also very afraid. It is hard to make decisions in those moments that are going to be very strategically sound or intelligent. We need to somehow find a way to take a step back and get to a place of reason. There will be times we have to be aggressive, but being angry does not usually help. Anger can also escalate things to points of no return. Many times we seek revenge instead of justice. Justice by definition must involve truth. Revenge does not care too much about the truth, it wants release and any kind of retribution without much concern of finding the truth.

It is a dangerous path we are trodding. I will choose the path of reason and courage and i hope as a culture we can find our way back to that path.