College Paper

Topics: Elephant, Empathy, Emotions Pages: 3 (1637 words) Published: November 1, 2014

Kushal Dasika
Prof Hilger
Expository Writing Paper
10/20/2014
The Nightmare Within
Fear and compassion are two very different feelings that equally drive individuals. Many assume that fear and compassion have absolutely no relationship due to the fact that they are polar opposite emotions that people usually do not associate with each other. Even though they are two very different emotions, fear can be used to express one’s inner compassion. Fear and compassion are two of the most prevalent emotions used in regular human interaction, but unlike compassion, fear is obviously dreaded in society due to the fact that humans in general do like to face and deal with adverse conditions. Leslie Bell, in Hard to Get: Twenty-Something Women and the Paradox of Sexual Freedom, talks about women in early their twenties facing fear about their identities. Robert Thurman’s “Wisdom” speaks about how his experience of becoming a monk taught him to release his inner “self”. And Charles Siebert speaks about the relationship between humans and elephants in the “Elephant Crackup”. Through all of these stories it is clear and apparent that deep and intense fear drives and motivates individuals to become much more compassionate and understanding. First, before fully analyzing how fear and compassion interact with each other, we must understand why fear occurs to people originally. Fear is an emotion that everybody in this world is aware of, but it is one that is very hard to explain because it is an emotion that is extremely hard to specify. Fear often comes when we face situations that we aren’t accustomed to, but it is impossible to realize why fear is the emotion that occurs in these situations. As Thurman discusses “Why did he have to label the reality he discovered with words such as voidness, emptiness, and selflessness? When people respond negatively to these terms, it’s often because they’re worried that these words imply they are going to die, disappear, or go crazy...
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