Schneier on Security
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July 2, 2012
A poet reflects on the nature of fear.
Posted on July 2, 2012 at 1:10 PM
• 7 Comments
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"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me."
When I can look in the mirror and respect the man that I am and am trying to be, I have no fear of others or what others think. When I put my trust in God, I have no fear of events that I can't control.
Those two together are summed up by the common saying:
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can and wisdom to know the difference.
Pointing out that isn't just accepting everything, but also asking for courage to change the things that I can. You don't even have to be religious to understand the principle.
P.S. I suppose it makes life more colorful for some of us having people who live in misery trying to figure this out with enormous feats of mental gymnastics. It's almost a prerequisite to being a poet. :)
Fear is recognition of what is possible, regardless of likelihood, but proven possibilities (like security research).
--Nukes have been dropped on population centers. Genocide on massive scales has occurred. The "world" has been at war (actually the idiots living on it). That is, if history we have learned actually happened. One of my greatest fears is learning history that never happened.
Fear is not saying your opinion unless you're "proxied-up", for future employers and society may well unconstitutionally judge you on your statements. Instead of fighting the legality of using your free-speech rights against you for a job, you anonymize yourself, enact facades of plausible denial. Eventually we don't even know who we are or what we stand for and just about anything can be presumed to be a facade...
"The Gift of Fear" is a must read book imo.
I hope that's not what she feared.
As I approach 40 I find fear in everything -- everyday. I rarely travel or interact with others. I hedge everything. My mind swims each night with non-probabilistic possibilities, making sleep difficult at best. Ironically I believe my greatest fear is of wasted time, missed opportunity and a wasted life as a result of fear.
I'm convinced fear and dread is one of pride's most wealthy and successful children. Humility, pride's nemesis, is the only reprieve I've ever discovered -- save pure, unbridled arrogance (which I spent many years test driving as well). I define humility using the biblical definition, ("Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves." Phil 2:3). It is indeed a rare occasion when I display genuine humility, however it is precisely on these occasions when it seems fear is evicted from my mind, as water squeezed from a sponge.
I have much to say on this topic and have struggled as many years as come to memory. My weakness of mind borders on laughable, and at times I take pleasure in the thought of my own death.
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