Saturday, October 31, 2015

Scare Yourself Senseless

2:58 AM

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It’s safe to say that we have much reason to be afraid. And you know what? That’s okay.


An active imagination is essential, an overactive one desirable. Whatever you do, do not attempt to invoke rational thought—pure reason is the enemy of the supernatural, for when we are within reason we rationalize the eerie. The subtle trickeries of poltergeists are dismissed as the work of the wind, or poor carpentry. No, reason will not do. Chuck it into the closet and pick it up only when you’ve wet your bed twice out of fear for the unseen.

Once the preliminary measures have been taken care of, compile the most superb horror films and stories you can find and wait until nightfall. Do not—and this is essential—turn the lights on as the sun begins to sink into slumber. Allow the darkness to engulf you and begin perusing your impressive horror collection. Treat every single word as Bible truth. After you’ve read enough to convince yourself that you are in fact within the presence of one supernatural creature or another, take a brief but meaningful trip to the restroom mirror and close your eyes in the fear that a blood drenched lady will stare back at you.

Rock yourself back and forth under your covers and try to tell yourself that none of it is true whilst feeling a cold chill on your feet (it’s best to stick your toes out of the blanket hereon out).

This entertaining (and highly falsified guided narrative) seems like Halloween protocol—scare yourself senseless. Horror films can cause your heart to beat all about your chest, and while arguably an entertaining way to pass the time, fear has more purpose than simply a Halloween high.

Fear is a primal human emotion and drives our daily decision-making processes. We’d sacrifice our comfortable couch for fear of some viral zombie infection being transmitted to us; we’d walk five hundred miles for fear of missing out on the best concert of the year; we’d wait in line in the rain for three days straight for a new Harry Potter book to be released (although, no, there’s no new HP book coming folks) for fear of missing out on something incredible but also for fear of the internet spoilers that will most likely appear within three hours of the book release.

Fear comes naturally to us the way tail chasing comes naturally to your pet dog. We’re not entirely sure why we’re afraid of certain things, but we’re afraid of them nonetheless. And this instinct of fear has kept the human race alive for years and years on end. The human body’s fight or flight syndrome kicks in when we face life-threatening situations. Our brains seem to remember this response so that fear, in some cases, can be learned. Way back when, we learned to fear dinosaurs and therefore ran away from them before we got eaten. Conversely, the dodo bird did not learn to fear human beings and therefore ended up in our lovely silver plates for dinner.

On a deeper level, traumatic events may lead to the existence of subconscious fears—some event in your childhood could probably explain why you’re so affected by spiders, for example. Veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder, for example, break out in sweats when a certain song plays because it was the song that played on the radio when a grenade dropped right next to their arm.

These fears are completely valid and deserve to be given the time of day. Too often, our society values the fearless soldier to the man who fears for his life. Yet we were programmed to fear due to the presence of true horrors in our world—psychopathic murderers, deceptive acquaintances, perverted office-mates. It’s safe to say that we have much reason to be afraid. And you know what? That’s okay.


Article by Dani
Art by Sean
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Dani Pua is a storyteller and a Daughter of Eve. She is a curious creature, studying medicine until further notice, and considers herself a ‘citizen of the world.’ (Whatever that’s supposed to mean.) Oh, and she’s also very much fond of lemon squares. She shares some of her stories on blotpress.weebly.com

 

Sean is a 15-year-old muggle-born who is proud to say that he is perfectly abnormal, thank you very much. Peculiar in many ways, he is a far cry from that common stereotyped teenager.  He has a great passion for art, and would love to do nothing more than making collages and other creative thingamajigs. 

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