politics (23)

The Fear Problematique: Fisher's New Book



A volume in the series: Studies in the Philosophy of Education. Editor(s): John E. Petrovic, The University of Alabama.

In Press 2023 and for sale: Information Age Publishing

The author, with over three decades of focused research on fear and fearlessness and 45 years as an emancipatory educator, argues that philosophy and philosophy of education have missed several great opportunities to help bring about theoretical and meta-perspectival clarity, wisdom, compassion, and practical ways to the sphere of fear management/education (FME) throughout history. FME is not simple, nor a luxury, it is complex. It’s foundational to good curriculum but it requires careful philosophical critique. This book embarks on a unique transdisciplinary understanding of The Fear Problematique and how it can be integrated as a pivotal contextual reference for assessing the ‘best’ way to go in Education today and tomorrow. Educational philosophy is examined and shown to have largely ‘missed the boat’ in terms of responding critically and ethically to the insidious demand of having to truly educate ourselves when we are so scared stiff. Such a state of growing chronic fear, of morphing types of fear, and a culture of fear, ought to be central in shaping a philosophy of fear(ism) for education. The book challenges all leaders, but especially philosophers and educators, to upgrade their own fear imaginary and fear education for the 21st century, a century of terror likely to grow in the cascading global crises.



CHAPTER 1: Introduction.

CHAPTER 2: Philosophy and a Fearturn.

CHAPTER 3: Education Philosophy 'Misses the Boat.'

CHAPTER 4: Fear(ism) as Philosophy: A Transformative Paradigm.

CHAPTER 5: Fear Management/Education for the 21st Century.

CHAPTER 6: Fearlessness as Educational Philosophy.

CHAPTER 7: Recommendations.

Glossary. References. Index.

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What you see above is some of the major points of which Marianne Williamson is running her presidential campaign 2024 (as Dem.) in terms of a Department of Children & Youth and her stated priority to be "mothers and children" in America, as extremely important foundations for a healthy society. I don't disagree. However, you may note that Williamson's platform is not listing that there should be a good quality "fear education" --nope, she is rather talking about all children getting "mindfulness training in schools"--and, this is very short-sighted, although it sounds good at first pass. Also, the caring interest in trauma is there. But truly MW has not thought deeply enough to see that at the base of the problem is a Fear Problem, a "culture of fear" which is the meta-context for all the things she wants to fix about mothering, child rearing and care, etc. Sorry, MW needs a fearanalyst (and educator) on her staff team really quickly. 

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I have long been watching the rise and fall and antics and dramatizations of the Jordan B. Peterson (social) phenomenon. One cannot really ignore it, if you want to know what is going on in the sociopsychological and political atmosphere of today's world (at least in the postmodern Western world). 

I made this poster today, after listening to Peterson's failure to make his legal case against the Ontario College Board of Psychologists yesterday. His case is for "free speech" when he is in public as a public figure, and at the same time he wants to keep his psychologist license and not be censored (unfairly). He is big on being treated unfairly by anyone, especially now his own profession and the State --thus, Peterson is a controversial political figure and has been deeply interested in activism and politics and a rather conservative-libertarian perspective. That's all a much bigger topic. You can hear my 3 videos on my Youtube channel if you want to know more of my views of this fascinating and troubling character in the world. Right now, he is actually one of the top most known ('stars') internationally as a Canadian. Even more known than the prime minister?--or they are a close tie. Peterson can't stand our Canadian prime minister and says so in public media constantly. 

My critique or fearanalysis is of Peterson's take on 'freedom'... which is fear-based, and thus distortive. (a longer argument there to be had)...

Gabor Mate is also very well-known and outspoken, and has his quick critique in 2 min. summary, rather good, I think: go to: https://www.google.com/search?q=%22Gabor+Mate%22+on+%22Jordan+Peterson%22+&sca_esv=559894069&source=hp&ei=HgfoZPHcMsWH0PEPrOK-4Ao&iflsig=AD69kcEAAAAAZOgVLm6V1PbrowLbIdKH4tRhOBH3bxKC&ved=0ahUKEwjx45i11_aAAxXFAzQIHSyxD6wQ4dUDCAw&uact=5&oq=%22Gabor+Mate%22+on+%22Jordan+Peterson%22+&gs_lp=Egdnd3Mtd2l6IiIiR2Fib3IgTWF0ZSIgb24gIkpvcmRhbiBQZXRlcnNvbiIgMgYQABgWGB5IuWFQAFi1XnAAeACQAQCYAbkBoAGfF6oBBTIyLjEyuAEDyAEA-AEBwgILEAAYgAQYsQMYgwHCAhEQLhiABBixAxiDARjHARjRA8ICCBAAGIAEGLEDwgILEAAYigUYsQMYgwHCAhEQLhiKBRixAxiDARjHARjRA8ICBRAAGIAEwgILEC4YigUYsQMYgwHCAgsQLhiDARixAxiABMICCxAuGK8BGMcBGIAEwgIFEC4YgATCAgsQLhiABBixAxiDAcICCBAuGIAEGLED&sclient=gws-wiz#fpstate=ive&vld=cid:adf7cd1e,vid:qOJ0lUSBI14


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Henry A. Giroux

 Professor of Culture and Education and Media Studies, Henry A. Giroux has for over 50 years been critically analyzing "Education" and "Culture" and "Politics" --and the underlying worldview and values that shape the learning and teaching of citizens. Recently he has written an article on "Gangster Capitalism" and argues where we are going, and how even neoliberalism (as 'mainstream' economic ideology) has been failing so badly in some ways, that it needs to now engulf and perpetuate neofascism to survive--meaning, to spread the culture of fear even more virally. Not good. 


Gangster Capitalism and the Politics of Fascist Education

— from LA Progressive

Capitalism has always been constructed on the basis of organized violence. Wedded to a political and economic system that consolidates power in the hands of a financial, cultural social elite, it construes profit making as the essence of democracy and consuming as the only obligation of citizenship. Matters of ethics, social responsibility, the welfare state, and the social contract are viewed as enemies of the market, thus legitimating the subordination of human needs to a relentless drive for accumulating profits at the expense of vital social needs and the larger public.[1] Driven by a ruthless emphasis on privatization, deregulation, commodification, a sclerotic individualism and ruthless model of competition—neoliberal capitalism has morphed into a machinery of death—an unabashed form of gangster capitalism.

No longer able to live up to its promises of equality, improved social conditions, and rising social mobility, it now suffers from a legitimation crisis. No longer able to defend an agenda that has produced staggering levels of inequality, decimated labour rights, provided massive tax breaks to the financial elite, bailouts to big capital, and waged an incessant war on the welfare state, neoliberalism needed a new ideology to sustain itself politically.[2]

As Prabhat Patnaik, observes, the most radical fix to the potential collapse of neoliberalism “came in the form of neofascism.”[3] Neoliberalism’s failure has resulted in its aligning itself with appeals to overt racism, white supremacy, white Christian nationalism, a politics of disposability, and a hatred of those deemed other. As an unapologetic form of gangster capitalism, violence is wielded as an honourable political discourse and education as a cultural politics has become both divisive and injurious. The flattening of culture, elevated to new extremes through the social media and the normalization of manufactured ignorance, has become a major educational weapon in the annihilation of the civic imagination, politics, and any sense of shared citizenship.







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Philosophy of Fearism or FEARISM philosophy, whatever way one constructs these, is a historical (potentially grand and radical) turn in philosophy, and like many other turns before it, there needs to be serious investigation into this turn and its reasons for wanting to make a turn in the way philosophy itself is perceived, constructed, and operates. Any top-notch political movements would do well to be informed by fearism philosophy.  -rmf


I often encourage folks to study fear(lessness) with expanded imaginaries rather than old school only ideas and imagination. I ask the learners be open and curious. Lurking amongst the history of ideas about fear are limitations as well as the benefits of careful study. However, in the late 20th century, a new turn had occurred with the emergence of two concepts "fearism" (Fisher) and "philosophy of fearism" (Subba). This blog will not cover that history of new thinking on the topic as there are lots of resources now published to do so [1]. But if you were around in the 1990s, for e.g., there was no way to study fear that truly provided a new philosophy of fear at the same time. 

Okay, enough on the history of ideas and their politics. Let me now turn to the subject of this blogpost, which spun from my watching last night the fascinating historical/drama film by Raoul Peck (2017) The Young Karl Marx. Without resorting to a marxophobic reaction as so many do in the West (especially N. A.) and around the world with fears of socialism and communism, let's back off that fear-based move and keep open and curious, and let the criticism fly later. My colleagues and I are promoting fearism not Marxism per se. 

Peck's film relates to my wanting to talk to Feurbach's philosophical turn in the mid-19th century that Marx and Engels fed from as young revolutionaries in Europe and Britain. It relates indirectly to my desire to elaborate a simple summary purpose of philosophy of fearism and clarify for readers why is this an important history of ideas to name fear(ism) as a philosophical base and movement itself. But before I dive into Ludwig Andreas von Feuerbach(1804-72) and his great influence on W. thinkers like Darwin, Marx, Freud, Engels, Wagner and Nietzsche, for examples, let me say a bit more about the Peck film and my attraction. 

I am attracted to any teachings that helps one understand the status quo and its oppositions, the latter being ideas, discourses, and/or movements that challenge and critique the mainstream (sometimes called the Old World view). We see a young 20's something Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels meeting and building a manifesto to challenge the Old World (largely unjust) ways of doing economics and labor relations. A good movie review (Arnoff, 2018) says this is the film the younger generations have been waiting for, those who are tired of the only two alternatives battling under Capitalism vs. Communism. No, there is a third way, called Socialism.

The young Marx was a leading ground philosopher and Engels a sound boots-on-the-ground scientific-empirical thinker of socialism, who saw what was needed to reform labor relations (i.e., classism). That's a great thing in the history of ideas and movements for positive change--in fighting oppression. And the film shows how brash the young philosophers were and the risks they took for what they believed in. The Young Karl Marx is entertaining too but it is "a theory laden movie" an "ideological coming-of-age story" [2]. It depicts some of the real strengths and flaws of revolutionaries and philosophers. It shows that all philosophers also have their politics and there is plenty of clashing. The young brash Marx is obnoxious and angry and determined. His flaws showed and it was clear he needed mediated help from allies like his Jenny and Engels and many others. It takes a community to change the world --to bring about revolution. Clearly, Marx and Engels failed overall, as have many other philosophers to bring about the change they wanted--that is, their ideals. Although, for sure, arguably, much good did change because of these thinkers and those around them that they drew upon, like the ideas of Feuerback and Proudhorn, for examples. 

What was Marx's main complaint? There are many things he critiqued of the status quo, but I'll stay in this blogpost with the philosophical ones, and relate those to Feuerbach's critique and then finally to the philosophy of fearism critique today. 

Understanding Feuerbach's Radical Descent and Philosophical Turn 

First, I admit I have not read Marx and Engels and Feuerbach, other than those mostly who have written about them. I have drawn often on philosopher Ken Wilber to understand these thinkers and their movements they produced in the history of philosophy and in the evolution of consciousness itself--the latter is my most interest. Ultimately, as a fearist thinker myself, I want to know the intimate link between consciousness and fear. I'll return to that later. 

Secondly, I am not for or against Marxism, or Communism or Socialism. I am curious what each of these ideological movements, sets of ideas and their leaders have to offer for a better (less oppressed) humanity--and, that ultimately would be a way to lead the world be be more sane, ecologically sustainable and a healthy place to raise children. 

Thirdly, I am not an ideologue per se, in that I am pushing any "ism" and think all other forms of thought (and isms) are crap. Such exclusionist and reductive (and highly political) thinking doesn't make for good philosophy. Now, I am not a professional philosopher either, and I am want to critique philosophy and even poke fun at it, as we see in the young brash Karl Marx. 

Fourthly, let me say in summary in my own words, without a lot of research on Feuerbach, what I think was happening in these 19th century revolutionary storms of ideas, ideologies, critiques and new offerings of how to live more justly and fair. I simply, woke up this morning, after watching the movie last night, and in my hypnopompic state and darkness of the bed, I am starting to link things. I know Desh Subba has written a lot in the past few years on his fearism critique of Marxism, etc. This is all lingering in the back of my mind. I want to explain what Subba is doing with his version of fearist thinking and some of my own thoughts. So, begin, I say, and write something to start it off here, and the FM ning is as good a place as any to jot down these notes. The largest power in philosophy of the early to mid-19th century seemed to be Hegelian thought. It was Idealistic. It was stunning in depth and scope, but it lacked a practical empirical substantiation. Feuerbach, then Marx (amongst others) were looking for the strengths and fault-lines in Idealism [3] as a way to bring about any real revolution in society, and their criticism was aimed at Hegel and philosophical academicians and at the pompous "young Hegelians" in politics as well. So, Marx and Engels led a socialist attack on "abstraction" (and Hegelian thought and political spin from it). Marx was looking for ideas to turn around Hegelian philosophy in politics and economics. He later would call this class-critique and critique of oppression in general. But before that, I want to focus on the historical evolution of the ideas of criticism that the young Marx was propagating so passionately. So, let me turn to some expertise knowledge beyond my own, from scholars like Wilber and Collins [4], as starters. 

Collins (1998) a sociologist, and a conflict theorist of my own persuasion, is also a great historian of sociology. He has put his scholarship into studying global philosophies and their players and movements as a dynamic network of patterns of power, well worth understanding. Ideas-people-places-power flows are all important in this socioecology of philosophy. So, what does Collins offer us in understanding the core of mid-19th century Europe and the philosophical (political) turn going on and Feuerbach's location in it? In very brief, Collins noted in Germany history of thought and philosophical circles, several networks were going on, and by 1837-42 the "left-Hegelians" were following Feuerbach's philosophical critique mainly [5]. These were more "coffeehouse" like circles and less academicians centered in universities, while basically, they would not last long and German philosophy would move into the academy thereafter. The young Marx and Engels were part of the Feuerbach leftist socialist wing but eventually left it in developming their own critique. A big part of that critique, still following Feuerbach's critique of Hegelianism overall, was to move to a more materialism and secularism in their foundational philosophy--turning spiritual Hegel on his head, as it is often said by historians. They claimed Hegel has it all wrong, and that material was ultimately real, in opposition to Hegel's metaphyics of spiritual is ultimately real. Hegel's philosophy and its new spins could never, for Feuerbach and Marx be a foundation for a just society of labor relations and basic humanist values in the economic sphere of survival. Hegel was philosophy for the bourgeois (elites). 

Feuerbach criticized religion (Christianity) and broke with tradition and Hegelian sympathy for Christianity. "After Hegel's death came Feuerbach and Marx" (and others) [6] to dominate the intellectual waves of thought in philosophy and politics. The Battle of Sense and Soul (Material and Spiritual) (Descenders and Ascenders) continued at this time in history (and it still does). Feuerbach (then Marx) were fighting back to ground philosophy in the sense-world, anti-metaphysical, anti-abstract, anti-elitist. Wilber (1996), wrote, "There is a famous phrase, that after Hegel everybody was saying 'back to Kant!' [i.e., rationality and its grounding in the senses, and empiricism]" [7]. Wilber summarizes: "The collapse of Idealism left the Descenders [materialists] virtually unchallenged as the holders and molders of modernity....the Idealist current was snapped up by the industrial grid and converted, via Feuerbach and Marx, into a strongly materialistic and 'naturalistic' conception. It's almost impossible to escape the modern Descended grid, and after absolutely heroic attempts by the Idealists, they were hounded out of town by the troglodytes. And so Feuerbach, a student of Hegel, would soon announce that any sort of Ascent, was simply a projection of men and women's human potentials onto an 'other world' of wholly imaginative [false] origin. And, according to Feuerbach, it is exactly this ['fear'] projection of human potential onto a 'divine' sphere that cripples men and women and is the true cause of self-alienation" [8]--and, concomitantly, such 'fear' projection as I call it and existentialists like Becker would call it immortality projection, there is a weakening and vulnerability created to exploit that alienated and wish-filled man by the world of the senses-material and economic exploitation. "Get real!" is the Descender-call, the Feuerbach-Marxist charge here. Then, they argue, we can resist and avoid exploitation of workers and the poor, by those who would seduce us into being 'slaves' (labor) for this so-called higher divine spiritual end, of which the elites propogate as ideology in the name of the bourgeois church, state, and corporations. Real empowerment was grassroots, secularist, modernist, and a Descender movement in consciousness itself. 

Wilber (1995), a 'neo-Hegelian' of sorts (but an integralist philosopher), today argues, we humans of the West especially, have not recovered yet from this massive philosophical turn and 'blow' (collapse) of the Kosmos into the materialist explanation for everything--a worldview of only the seeable and matter-based substance is real [9]. Engels would pen, "nothing exists" apart from nature and human beings....The enthusiasm was general; we were all for the moment followers of Feuerbach." Wilber laments, "And the entire modern and postmodern world is, in effect, the followers of Feuerbach" [10]. The larger philosophical question for our time is: What impact on consciousness itself is such a Descender victory?" It has big problems, so Wilber and I argue. 

'Fear' Projection and It's Mighty Problems

Feuerbach then was a philosopher of mighty insight and leadership capability obviously. Marx took it further, and others have taken it further too. This is nothing to dismiss too easily as nonsense. What intrigues me as Wilber analyzes the Feuerbachian (r)evolution of thought, he points out the critique of the materialists toward the spiriitualists (or at least the idealists), is that the latter are projecting ideals for human beings (i.e., their higher human potential and empowerment) onto the divine fantasies and constructions and dogmas around them (e.g., religion). "Projection" is a powerful psychological term, and it is argued by many (including myself) as a fear-projection (or 'fear' projection, as I prefer)--by which a certain inferiority complex in the human is projecting onto the immortal and trying to find a "fearless" representation of identity to attach to to make them feel better (be less fearful of mortality), etc. This complex projection phenomenon, driven by fear-based thought is pathological. Wilber sees this too, as do I. But the materialist philosophies were also trying to point this out and correct it with their own cura philosophy of the time (e.g., secular materialist, and humanist, modernist). Fine. But they could not see their own fatal flaw in the materialist (Feuerbachian factor) turn. That's the point of an integralist critique (a la Wilber), which I prefer, and going beyond that it is my contention that the very ones critiquing the spiritualist philosophies had their own fear-based agenda and ideology as in their form of rejection and criticism. They would not turn that projection critique on their own positionality, and philosophies and politics--that is, on their own self-alienation and diminishment of consciousness itself. Wilber (1995, 1996), for example, tells this story of the unfortunate binary of Ascenders-Descenders, in what is a compelling philosophical story and critique. I recommend you read his lengthy analysis. But yes, Wilber agrees, fear-based projections are on both sides of this battle for reality, and Ascenders only are just as bad as Descenders only. That's the point. It creates massive pathologies at all levels of society and the world and a lot of toxic destruction has shown itself because of the failures of modernity and postmodernity (post-Feuerbachian factor). 

So, along comes this late 20th century, early 21st century new fearism philosophy (a la Fisher-Subba) as another corrective to the Feuerbachian corrective--and, a new battle for philosophy and politics, and how to best live generally, is underway. History of philosophy is like that. History of ideas is not static. And, fearism presents new ideas (and old) and offers up a new menu of choices. At least, that's the argument I wish to remind readers of. Check it out yourself. 

What fearism offers is a re-visioning of what is the basis of existence, and it concludes "fear" is the basis, and it precedes essence and all else that is real. With that, there is no need to be depressed about it. For "fear" in the fearism lens, from the fearist perspective, is not merely negative, not merely an emotion or feeling or defense. And, from there a new story of human potential and corrective to the pathologies of history and philosophy are ready to take shape. But, will it ever get off the ground? Will it every be applied in important places of society? We don't know that yet. The Fearism movement (like Fearlessness Movement) are very nascent, at least, in their current forms. I have always argued, however, that fear(lessness) is foundational to life and evolution. They are ancient forces and intelligences waiting to be tapped by us. We still have to wake up to this potential, and I believe (like Subba, and some others) "fear" is a great channel for this awakening, for this paradigm shift and new philosophy.  


End Notes

1. E.g., see Fisher, R. M., and Subba, D. (2016). Philosophy of fearism: A first East-West dialogue. Xlibris; and Fisher, R. M. (2022). Philosophy of fearism: A primer. Xlibris. 

2. See Arnoff, K. (2018). The Young Karl Marx: A film whose time has come. The Intercept. https://theintercept.com/2018/03/13/the-young-karl-marx-a-film-whose-time-has-come/

3. Keep in mind that intellectuals, E. and W. at this time, says Collins, "were cosmopolitans" and globalist and more universalist in outlook and philosophies and "Idealism is cosmopolitanism in religion; it is religious thought argued out independently of dogma and tradition. That is why Idealism everywhere is the favored philosophy in the transitional generation of secularizing reformers" (p. 686). 

4. Wilber, K. (1995). Sex, ecology and spirituality: The spirit of evolution (Vol. 1). Shambhala; Collins, R. (1998). The sociology of philosophies: A global theory of intellectual change. The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. 

5. Collins (1998), pp. 530-1. 

6. Ibid., p. 686. 

7. Wilber, K. (1996). A brief history of everything. Shambhala, p. 282. 

8. Ibid., p. 283. 

9. Wilber (1995). 

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According to Slavoj Zizek, the contemporary philosopher, we are seeing a dying of philosophy so severe, but it can be somewhat rehabilitated by the best of the philosophy of 19th century Hegelianism, he argues.

The brilliant Zizek does look at fear and terror in history and at times makes sense of its nature and role. He says that Hegel would be a philosopher for our times with a useful pessimism but not nihilism and we could see Hegel's predictions as heuristic for us today as in how Hegel critiqued the 'good' that then becomes 'bad' and that is seemingly an inevitability--yet, there can be still a renewal (new synthesis) to something better as well. The French Revolution, for e.g., shows this dialectic dynamic worked and simply it was a political/philosophical movement of consciousness that sought freedom and produced so much terror. And an interesting theorizing can also be found in Hegel, says Zizek, where 'the rebel' fighting for justice is in the future (and now) mixed and pathological, with the "rich rebel" (e.g., corporatist elites who wish to control the world) controls the justice rebel. This is a huge problem. My own thinking has for several decades called this the "normal rebel" (closet rebel) that moves to totalism under another roof of its own pursuit of freedom from totalitarianism. A more complex theorizing of the rebel that intrigues me. 

I quite like his reconstructing Hegel as still of worthy offering, a similar position taken by my fav integral philosopher Ken Wilber. For more on Zizek's views see the recent interview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06KiOj6gjbs

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Future, "Beyond Belief," says Noam Chomsky


Famous social critic, prof. Noam Chomsky, in his 90s, has seen a lot of the world and studied carefully its current trajectory. In his latest interview the other day, 

he notes, in regard to how elites are making decisions around profit, war and the future: "If you think about the likely future [for humans], what will happen is we're finihsed; this is going on all over; it's beyond belief." -N. Chomsky (Dec. 12, 2022)

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IN a recent interview (Mar. 12, 2020)... I heard this 80+ year old man, scientist, environmental activist, say some really important things. As powerful as he has been in his career (e.g., The Nature of Things, and The David Suzuki Foundation)--helping bring science to education and political policy, etc., he told CBC interviewer Anna Marie Tremonti [1] that he's always been controlled during his career as a scientist and as host of the show and a dignitary of a foundation, etc... THAT "I've been constrained" by those who run those organizations and programs, as they would tell him "...'oh, you can't say that'...you have to couch everything, with 'oh, well, there's this hope...there's this opportunity' and people have never really confronted the reality...seriously enough...", he said. 

Now as an elder not under anyone's thumb and their fear that the consequences of him speaking the truth would have been not politically correct, or pissed off funders, etc., David is coming out full blast these days and saying what now fear has controlled in him and others. Some of his truths he spoke in this interview: 

- we have less than 10 years to 'turn around' total chaos (e.g., with global warming, climate change, migrations and economy collapsing etc.)

- we have to get beyond sugar-coating and hope-mongering strategies and get to the raw 'truth' and don't wait for politicians to act on it "it's going to be too late" when they actually do some really big things to help

- "We just have no idea what is coming" and current hope in "geo-engineering" and "science" solutions are going to really make things even worse 

- "This the great fear I have. We're at a point where we have a very limited amoutn of time, in which we can actually do something to prevent total chaos." 


The whole point of my blogs on fear and politics of late, is to also speak as an elder (albeit, only age 69)--there is no use anymore to hold back and sugar-coat reality, and yes, the facts of science included--and, yes, there is FEAR controlling almost everything in this world and the ways we 'talk about problems and crises' on a global scale--and, politically, etc. This is going to really be our downfall, and rather soon... as Suzuki, like myself and many others are saying ... I have always promoted FEARLESSNESS over HOPE... because things are that serious. 


1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bOnUW-3EQ2w


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I have for decades attempted to educate the general public about fear. The other side of my work is to educate their leaders. Specficially I want to share an example of how to educate politicians. 

Politics and Political Sphere

First, let me state that I have my issues with the whole political system of institutionalized "politics"--that is one thing. Yet, I have made a distinction that "politics" as institutionalized is only 1/2 of what democratic practice is about. The other 1/2 where I hang out the most is what I call the "political sphere." The latter is what we all are involved in as citizens and no politics or politician who earns their livelihood from politics ought to ever dominate the political sphere. Nowadays, the later is often talked about, in part, as "cultural politics." But that's another topic. 

How To Educate a Politician

I am not one to try to constantly put down people who become politicians. I could equally say, I am not one to put down people who become physicians, ministers, or school teachers, police officers, etc. They are people pursuing a career. I respect them as people first and foremost, even if I disagree vehemently with their practices and the system they belong to. I once, long ago, was a professional school teacher. I know that for many good teachers they will eventually become corrupted by the System of the State and Education as an institutions. Not all of the best professionals will leave the System. I did after two years. 

This blog is not about that decision to stay in or leave the institutions, that has ethical implications of course. I would ask anyone who is a politician to do the best you can and be as ethical as possible in an imperfect system they work in. And, by imperfect, unfortunately, there is an edge which is crossed often in which the System is actually oppressive. Now, if the System will admit it is oppressive, then I have sympathy. If it is in denial, then I have little sympathy for its justifications and rationale and its continuance to practice oppression of one kind or another. That's when I will go after such institutions as an activist-educator. 

I have learned how slow and hard it is to change a System that remains in denial. Sometimes one can have small positive inputs that someone inside the System listens to, but mostly they are defensive to hearing anything about their oppressive aspects as a System. 'They are bought and sold' into keeping the operation going, no matter what. That's a crude way of putting it. I also have seen and know that still 'good people' are inside those systems, even if sometimes in small numbers. Some do see the corruption and want to change it from the inside. I respect that. 

So, to be short here, I'll share a recent experience of a simple way to make the fearlessness voice heard and how to challenge the System, and its leaders (e.g., politicians) to not fall prey to fear-based ways of perceiving, thinking, strategizing and doing their job. I know that's a high calling. There's no other option however, from the Fearlessness Paradigm perspective (which is arguably the only sane way to proceed). I listened with my partner to a live government debate in Alberta on coal-strip mining where the leader of the opposition party (Rachel Notley) made a first case for a private members bill to a committee. If the bill would pass that committee it could go to the larger legislature and have a hearing and vote there. The bill would stop all current exploration and new lease developments that have to do with coal strip mining in the Eastern Slopes of the Rocky Mountains in our province. I'm all for that. However, in the debates I noticed something and decided to write it up as a Letter to the Editor in the local newspaper and also sent to Rachel Notley office. Here's what I wrote for public media, as that's one way to get a much larger audience (if the newspaper publishes it of course): 


Congratulations to all who made private member bill (petitioned by Rachel Notley) of April 13 get through the first committee so that it can go to a full hearing and vote in the legislature. After watching the live performance of the debate on how best to protect the Alberta East Slopes from coal mining especially, I couldn't help but be saddened hearing the politicians reasons to slow and/or stop new coal mining permits. Even Notley and the NDP members who spoke to this bill were afraid to toalk about rationale in terms of transitioning out of a non-renewable economy, Global Warming, responsibility to worldwide Carbon Budgets and fulfilling a commitment to future sanity for our children's sake. No, what we heard was carbonophobic small-talk rational all about Albertans. I love the East Slopes too, but we have to face our fears folks; or we'll be tweaking our society and economic policies while the floor of the building crumbles. Global Warming is real. Notley should know better.   -R. Michael Fisher, Calgary

[note: Apr. 15th this was published, albeit gutted and words changed in places without my permission: go to: https://calgaryherald.com/opinion/letters/your-letters-for-april-15-2]


So, in a very short missive like this, our job as fearworkers of the Fearlessness Movement is (at least) to carefully observe and point out (without shaming people and damning their character and careers) when fear is ruling in their work and practices and thinking. I found a way to do that in this instance. It is not that I think my example above is flawless either. I was writing specifically for a newspaper. I know Editors of said newspapers typically don't take articles unless they have some emotional juices and so I wrote more emotionally than I typically prefer to. It's a compromise to some extent. 

I encourage you all on the FM ning to point out fear-based ways wherever you see them and let's help educate and support our leaders (especially politicians) to change and re-think about how they engage and (mis-)use fear in their jobs. 





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Outstanding (Left) American Journalist & Political Pundit (2021)

Chris Hedges

In a recent interview Chris Hedges declared with total confidence, based on all his years of following political revolutions around the world, that only a politics of fear is the solution to the current oppression by the governmental/corporate/military eltes... and, in particular he talks now a lot about the situation in America. 

His exact phrasing for this, and it is one I have heard before from Leftist revolutionaries and Rightists as well... boils down to their own political philosophies of change and reform. Hedges said in this interview that "POLITICS IS A GAME OF FEAR" -- and he implied overtly that anyone who doesn't think this is true is deluded. And, he would also more or less say, anyone who thinks they can over-turn the corruption of governments like in the USA, and thinks they can do that without 'weaponizing fear'... well, he would conclude they are naive and mistaken. Worse, he would argue, that such people who do not see or wish to play this "game of fear" --and using fear to bring down the elites in the Capitol... well, then they are people who add to the problem of the oppressed and are not liberators at all. By the way: near 40,000 people have listened to this interview with Hedges and I'm wondering if all of them are attracted to Hedges as fans because he promotes 'weaponizing fear' --another form of fearmongering(?) Now, that really has me concerned if that is the case. I think it will lead to dangerous consequences on many levels if it carries out into a Fear War. And, it quite likely can--as such a war is already well going on but it could inflate and become much worse and very soon as the crises of 'the people' grow in desperation with the pandemic and all the other economic problems (especially, in the USA right now). 

Of course, because I am a supporter, philosopher and political-educational activist myself, and one who is not in agreement with 'weaponizing fear' for any systematic or ideological reason, no matter how it is justified--there is a huge "clash" here between Hedges and myself. I could elaborate that more, if you folks on the FM ning want to explore it. I'd also be interested to hear your views here, so make Comments on this blog if this interests you. 

My challenge is to all those who think, write, philosophize about fear(ism) and fearlessness--trully, we have to come to clarify our political philosophies and positions--from the theoretical to the practice, to the critical praxis of being citizens in the world today. Is there any justification ethically, politically, etc. for 'weaponizing fear' and just playing the game of fear as Hedges says we must. He is declaring a revolution that scares the leadership of governments and their allies 'out of power'--and, the longer we wait, he would say, we are then only in commission with that corrupt power and we are aiding and abetting the suffering of the oppressed everywhere. It's quite the challenge and I applaud Hedges and always have for decades, for his courage to speak as he does 'truth to power.' The deeper issue however, cannot be dismissed, and that's the issue--many issues, about how do we theorize the nature and role of fear in this challenge of political revolution? 

As you may or may not know, I have taken up this American political scenario of cultural (r)evolution very seriously in the last two years with my research and writing a book on Marianne Williamson, who ran a failed campaign as a 'new' revolutionary leader of the Democratic Party--and, who if successful, could have been President of the U.S.A. right now. That was a very close --relatively close-- arising of a totally new spirit of fearlessness in politics like I have never seen in my life in North America. (see my FM blog on Marianne Williamson and my new book). She is definitely closely moving along the political spectrum like Chris Hedges, but they also have a "clash" and go quite different ways. We as citizens, would do well, to educate ourselves around such political leadership--and, these to political intelligentsia and pundits are very interesting in my opinion. 



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"Fear is a disease": What Do You Think?


Howard Thurman, author, Africanist, 'Black Power' theologian, mystic, activist during the Civil Rights Movement, was one who studied both W. religions and also visited the far East to study their religions, including the philosophy and social activism of Mahatma Gandhi. Thurman was the spiritual guide for most of the 'big' nonviolent Civil Rights leaders in the USA (including Martin Luther King Jr.). I was fascinated to learn in a recent talk on the internet that Thurman used the phrase "Fear is a disease" and closely linked to "hate"--and, it is one of the great enemies of the human potential and justice, love and compassion. 

So, I'm curious if you all would take a stab at sharing your own reflections here on this phrase by Thurman... (use the Comment fearture). 

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On left (Marianne Williamson, former Democratic leader hopeful in 2020 US election) and right, Jimmy Dore, podcaster (interviewer)- see the whole interview on Youtube "What is Enlightenment? With Marianne Williamson" Sept. 9, 2020.

Why watch or listen to this interview? Many reasons, as children are this fall going back to schools, youth are going to colleges and universities and their teachers are sitting with them on Zoom classes and/or in real face-to-face encounters we as a society like to call "education" (Education). MW is leading to this day and will continue I predict until her leaving this planet, one massive "Education" campaign (and, yes, it is heavily cloaked in "political" symbols, language and her activism as a leader for a healthy and sustainable democracy). She is an educational leader of the rare kind that does not come along very often in human history. That is the point of my bringing her and her work to the surface of public access and for public debate and dialogue. I have dedicated years to study of her work and recent 2020 campaign and now her following-up work before the Nov. 3 Presidential election (probably the most important US Presidential election in that country's history--the results of it will impact the world in powerful ways). With my study I have written and now had published my new book [1]. But my book is not what this blog is about. 

Even take 12 min.'s (less than 1/2 of this interview) into your living room in the next day or two. Dwell with it. If you are a professional educator, take even more time to re-listen to this over a few times. It is not that this particular interview is totally unique from her other thousands of such interviews/speeches/writings--she has a plethora of her 'voice' out there in published form (over 35 years of doing this)--but it is worth pulling out in this interview how she is an "educator" not just of spiritual things (her forte') but of material things--her "holistic" and "systems" perspective on reality, on learning and unlearning, on enlightenment itself, on love, on fear, etc. is all there brief and to the point in this short section of the interview. Not that you ought to agree with it all or anything. I have lots of my own critiques, including in my book--but that also is not the most important thing, I would argue. I am basically saying, it is profound to listen to a leader talk about education (of all people) in a transformative (yes, spiritual-centric) view, on mass social media, and with such clarity and conviction--and, with real answers of how to get through the mulitple cascading crises we face. 

Just a few teasers I pulled out this morning, to share here, and offer as prompts for you to listen to her teaching (some call preaching at times)--are the following: 

(a) the big healing and transformation required individually and collectively, "...won't be easy, and there will be truths we'll try our best to avoid" [2]

(b) we'll go not far in changing only surfaces of society and our crises if we are not "facing the darker Shadow of our past" [3] 

(c) we require a "deeper holistic understanding of what is happening" for "it's an all systems breakdown" [i.e., emergency] and only an "all systems" solution will do [4]

(d) real "understanding" is what our education and socialization processes need to be focused on--priority #1 and we can look to a couple sources to find that understanding (at least)--that is, watch a baby and watch the "big misunderstanding" that our learning systems virtually everywhere perpetrate as 'normal' (as 'truth' as 'reality') [5]

OKAY, that's a sample for you and, oh yes, let's not forget here why I get excited about her teaching about teaching our kids and youth (and everybody)--is because it is near impossible to find present educational and/or world leaders with such futurist, holistic, transformative and depth vision of how to proceed to "educate" ourselves as a species. Once again, it is not the issue of whether she has it all right, and is infallible in her vision, diagnosis and prescriptions--no, that is not my point, and I think she too is open to such critique--but the issue is that someone with such clarity of breadth and depth, spiritual and material, acumen is here and standing out and willing to 'run' for politics and/or to participate so sagaciously in the political sphere--that is remarkable and ought to be supported in and of itself. The world doesn't need MW to be President--necessarily (perhaps in 2024 if she runs again) but the world desires this kind of quality leadership, as I see it. And, let me close with my favorite quote from her intro bit in this interview: 

MW: "We're all so misinformed. From the earliest time in our lives, we are taught such false interpretations of living that we instinctively become more prone to fear...and defensiveness, where natural loving thinking feels unnatural to us, and unnatural fear-based thinking feels natural". 


1. My new book "The Marianne Williamson Presidential Phenomenon: Cultural (R)Evolution in a Dangerous Time" (Peter Lang, Inc., 2020) available later this fall but now ready for online pre-purchase

2. Her educational philosophy is one of 'truthing' as I call it--and, yes, fear as the ruling motivation will guarantee us to not move toward the truth but away from it

3. Shadow, in the Jungian psychotherapeutic sense, is core in her recovery, healing and transformation work, and she believes that what an individual has to go through to heal their 'shadow-side' (unconscious, past, trauma, fear) is to engage shadowork and she believes a nation also has do this; two of the major political pillars that hold together in an unhealthy way the American way of life (at least) are the shadows unexamined, untruthed out, that are coalescing always to keep the systemic racism and militarism in place as the ruling paradigms of how to live and, yes, our educational systems are immediately in commission if not in perpetuation overtly of these pillars and their fear-based structurations

4. Bringing her experience with 12-Step Recovery model of A. A. is one great experience she brings, but she also goes way beyond that model and approach to a more esoterically informed "recovery" and "transformation." As an educator, terms like recovery, restoration, healing, transformation ought to be the core of all curriculum, no matter what the subject matter is that is being taught---and, that will only occur when "Education Faculties" in Universities really take this serious and governments and non-government organizations truly support educators (at university levels, at least) to teach future teachers about these concepts and new paradigms (e.g., a fearlessness paradigm of education--systems theory, critical theory, etc.)--but these are concepts being gutted rapidly out of the universities with the domination of neoliberalism and superficiality over all

5. I (and Ken Wilber) would have differences of conflict philosophically and developmentally with her view of "enlightenment" (way too over simplified and regressively romantic); however, I (and Wilber) would completely support the notion that defining "enlightenment" and giving it a place in educational discourses (all ages)--is crucial to us facing the truth about what it is that is really important in life and education--and the future. Typically, modernist and postmodernist schooling avoids terms like "enlightenment" as if it is the plague. Universities have also grown an allergy to such discussion. Big mistake. 




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How I Understand The Political Sphere


I think one of the better teaching videos, with giving my background on how I make meaning of politics distinct from the political sphere is "The Great Citizen: Future Process Politics & Learning" from several months ago. I talk about my reasons for studying 'stars' like Michael Moore, Jordan Peterson, Marianne Williamson as a few popular culture examples. This seems to be my new research and writing--with my latest book manuscript currently under review as a study of the 2020 Democratic hopeful Marianne Williamson--a 'great citizen' in my mind and a teacher who can guide many to becoming such. And, yes, I am critical too. 

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US President Hopeful Tells It Like It Is


Climate crisis as part of an amoral economic system is part of Marianne Williamson's presidential campaign to tell the American people the whole truth and nothing but the truth. The question is, will the people be able to handle the truth? Fear can play it's own game of denial and forget, suppression and repression, and unfortunately I predict more and more people will carry on as 'business as usual.' Meanwhile, things will only get worse--and, deep below the surface of suppression and repression--eventually, more and more people will be overcome by the unconscious and collective fear/terror that's inevitable. Williamson teaches Love over Fear, Love as the solution to Fear-- and, so, you'd think perhaps a lot more people would 'rise up' and join her Revolution to transform America and the future. She will not be able to do it alone. 

See my series of two videos on Williamson ... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHDlATRUYLM

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Dr. Jinmin Lee was a Korean graduate of Politics Department of Brandeis University, USA, and has written a most valuable contribution to fear management literature in their doctorate dissertation: "The Faces of Fear: Cross-Cultural Dialogues on Fear and Political Community" 2014

Anyone interested in the interrelationship between fear and politics, especially the imaginary of fear of political philosophers (E. and W.)--this dissertation is going to be of great interest. I offer the dissertation here in pdf (link above), with the following Abstract: 

"Inspred by the hopes of better understanding and managing fear in our political lives, this dissertation engages Western and Chinese thinkers in a cross-cultural dialogue about fear. Influenced by the Enlightenment portrayal of fear, we tend to think fear as the great evil of civilization and the greatest enemy of freedom. This research shows that this way of thinking about fear is not the only one that is plausible or available to us. In order to understand what is missing from our current understanding of fear, this dissertation explores parallels among six philosophers who represent diverse attitudes to fear and political community. The six philosophers are grouped in three pairs, each of which includes one Western and one Chinese thinker: the moralists Aristotle and Confucius; the realists, Hobbes and Han Fei; and the Enlighteners, Montesquieu and Lian Qichao. From the dialogue among these thinkers, the thesis shows how the concept of fear has changed its character; how fear has developed critical relationships with justice, equality and liberty; and how fear has been related to the different ways of political life. At the same time, by highlighting each voice's strengths and weaknesses, this cross-cultural dialogue enables us to see how each theory may hide sources of fear within itself and how, ironically, they sometimes inflate the fears that they were designed to tame. Contemporary liberals, in particular, need to learn that there is much that is missing in our current understanding of fear and how these limitations may undermine their efforts to promote individual liberty and security. In this regard, these different faces of fear point both to a richer portrait of fear and a better understanding of how to handle it." 


I just published a Tech Paper 83 .pdf (involving Lee's work).


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NOTE: "In denial" is a code word for "in fear" (terror)... let's face it... then, we begin being part of the "solution" (if there is such a thing; we start the restorations, we start the path of fearlessness)... 

Andrew Harvey a long-haul serious spiritual teacher, along with others like Marianne Williamson, are really starting to take their critical shots big time at so much of the commodified bull shift and narcissism in the "spirituality" that cricles around human potential, pop cult spirituality, and new ageism... I am totally in agreement with their assessment as I have watched this bull shit for 30 years and not been impressed with how they manage fear (by trying to transcend it)--and, get themselves so wrapped up in their own spiritual enlightenment they miss the very disasters under their feet. "Terrifying" says Harvey, now that's what we have to admit to 'turn' (if possible) this all into a much better future outcome than the one this is fast going down now. Welcome to the Fearlessness Movement--a time for true Sacred Warriors. 

AND, for those who want to learn more about the "Deep Adaptation" movement, and facing our collective death and suffering on massive scale with the "inevitable" real collapsing of environment and social systems in the very near future (less than 10 years)... go to a great conversation by David Thorson (of Emerge podcast) with guest Dr. Jem Bendell on "The Meaning of Joy of Inevitable Social Collapse" https://anchor.fm/emerge

BTW, since writing this blog, a bunch more people (e.g., David Suzuki) etc. are coming out with the "collapse" narrative re: the precarious future facing humanity and the earth, to the point where various organizations I see are starting to collect resources to try to help people cope with the dramatic changes and potential suffering and death inevitable--e.g., "Library of Collapse" is one: 

Inline image

What is the Library of Collapse?

This Library was established with three distinct purposes.
The first is to be a repository and distribution point of key information that would be useful for surviving and thriving before, during and after societal collapse. To achieve this goal we intend to make our entire site downloadable. Individual knowledge-base PDFs will also be provided on a per-entry basis.
Our second goal is to aggregate important news happening around the world today pertaining to collapse. We will not interpret the news, nor will be selective in our narrative or editorialise. We are here to merely report the facts and allow our readers to form their own opinions.
Our third and final goal, is to be a place of support. Collapse is a scary notion for many, and can drive people towards depression. Our goal is to provide comfort, guidance and perhaps even some hope. We believe that individuals can still change the world.

What topics does the library cover?

The Library of Collapse will cover topics that will prove helpful before, during and after collapse.
We will have resources on preparing your home for natural disasters or intrusion. Writers are already working on a series of sustainable living guides, including micro-farming, alternative energy for your home and much more. Our library also covers important life skills that could make all the difference in a world on the brink of collapse.
We hope that you will find this growing library indispensable as we head into uncertain times.


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New Video (35 min.)... where I describe how I am stepping up full of inspiration to enter "politics" (i.e., from the perspective of the political sphere, a holistic-integral approach)... 

Entitled: The Great Citizen: Future Process Politics & Learning

[companion video recently: The Great Collapse: How Afraid Should We be?]  Note: my play off the term/concept "The Great" [1] has an intellectual history behind it, important for those readers and viewers who really want to understand where I am coming from. 

New Video- Description: The Great Citizen

Dr. Fisher talks of how he is moving to make a commitment over the next 10 years to enter the political sphere and politics. He shares his experience professionally as a teacher and differentiates that from being an educator (especially, adult educator). He questions and critiques politics and political figures but also supports their differing pieces of the puzzle toward the making of a great citizen, great society, etc. What makes a process philosophy, thinking, person is explored, and he shows his intention to study the history of transformation in the last 100 years especially and how it is essential to understand what is transformation and its role in the political sphere and politics of which he mentions Marianne Williamson as an exemplar for a holistic-integral approach as she is currently running for President of the USA in 2020. Always asking: "What are we learning?" is key to his educational philosophy and thus "learning to learn" is both a meta-cognitive skill but also the basis for a great learner/citizen and it is essential to analyzing the problems and crises we face individually and collectively.

(action still from my video)... 


End Note

1. The first book and stream of intellectual thought on the telling of 'Big Story' narratives per se came from my encounter in the late 70s-early 80s sometime, and reading the little booklet I ordered from the US by eminent Thomas Berry, the self-identified geologian (cultural historian) at the time, entitled "The New Story" (also a recent video has been put together on this work http://thomasberry.org/publications-and-media/the-new-story-1)--and, much later Berry wrote a critically important work to many in the holistic movement called "The Great Work: Our Way Into the Future" (2000) [2]; but the more substantive perennial philosophy work I read sometime in the early 80s was one that was promoted as foundational in the transpersonal philosophy of Ken Wilber at that time, and it is the classic (1936) book "The Great Chain of Being: A study of the History of an Idea" by Authur O. Lovejoy. There was that sense of "The Great" something, historically, evolutionarily and beautifully articulated, as what Wilber later called the "spirit in evolution" basically. And that's all resonant with my own soul and sensing that there is some 'big picture' (a fav. term of Wilber's) going on that I or anyone could learn about and feel there is an alternative view of history (and the future) than what the straight-up historians (and evolutionists in biology) have been and still were (and still are) painting about the nature and destiny of humans, Homo sapiens, and humanity and human nature, etc. The next in the trilogy on "The Great" works that came to me is David C. Korten's (2005), "The Great Turning: From Empire to Earth Community"--again, much could be said on how important this book and teaching is, and to say the least Korten has attracted a huge following across a lot of different areas, but yes, still within the alternatives movements. To be interested in "transformation" at the core of my process philosophy, politics and education, one has to link these triad or quadrad of influences to my work to make sense of what "transformation" means to me. And with a little research there are others who have their own versions of The Great Turning, e.g., a very important leader, and Buddhist eco-activist, Joanna Macy, https://vimeo.com/191169785 ;

2. "Great Work" (i.e., magnum opus) is a term with spiritual-philosophical rooting that apparently goes back to ancient Hermetic (esoteric) philosophy, at least, as a legacy and tradition of thinking about the reality and future reality that the human and consciousness is participating in, and can shape and can be shaped by. 


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How Will Love Do It?

Just finished my Part 2 Video doing a fearanalysis of Marianne Williamson's campaign so far: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CHDlATRUYLM

The Marianne Williamson campaign-- questions are being asked as in this Forbes magazine article on MW... [see also my blog a few posts ago on this ning]


Warrell, a fan of MW, asked (as many will) in this article ending: 

"Will love win out over fear in a political system that seems to so richly reward those who are most masterful in manipulating fear in their favor?  Time will tell."  



ALSO, my daughter (Vanessa) interviewed in a podcast Marianne in 2012, well worth listening to: http://www.poetic-justice.ca/for-the-love-of-social-change--interview-with-marianne-williamson --at one point Marianne says, "forces of fear are intensifying; forces of love are intensifying" -- sounds a lot how I think too but my philosophical and theoretical frame looks at this as forces of fear/fearlessness are intensifying... 


[AND NOW FOR REAL RESULTS of MW's accomplishments [Jan. 23/24]: (a) she dropped out in 2020 just before the Primaries as she didn't have the polling numbers to warrant keeping on going and spending all that campaign costs and, (b) she made it to the Primaries (New Hampshire) and she bombed out at only 5% of Dem voters there, and her new competitor Dean got 20% and did so in 1/2 the time Williamson did. I predict MW will drop out of this 2nd race for President. See my new video on this I will put up soon on my Youtube Channel https://www.youtube.com/@r.michaelfisher7930/videos


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"Emotional civil war" ... a very interesting (?) campaign quote... and, what does she really mean by this? And what is a fearologist's perspective of her rhetoric, intention, and potential for presidential victory and/or at least influence in American culture and politics. See my new youtube video on "Ethical Leadership: Marianne Williamson"

In the INTRODUCTION of Fisher & Subba (2016), p. xxxi [1], you will read a philosophy of fearism (and fearlessness) perspective on Marianne Williamson, and you will see that I have (in particular) been following her philosophy and social media following for a long time. She is a close friend with the media star Oprah Winfrey, and many others (see picture below on this webpage of FM ning). In that Introduction, Subba and I ask : "WHY FOCUS ON FEAR, NOT LOVE?" and then we begin the chapter with a quote from Williamson:

"Crossing the bridge to a better world begins with crossing a bridge inside myself, from the addictive mental patterns of fear and separation, to enlightened perceptions of unity and love. I have been trained by the world to think fearfully, and today I choose to think with love." (from A Year of Miracles), and, many of you may or may not know that she is a 'big' promoter and teacher, supported by A Course in Miracles movement. In this spiritual movement "love" is placed as the answer to "fear" and all of our problems. The dialogue between Subba and I now moves on in the Introduction to show how unreliable, if not distorted, from a fearist perspective, this emphasis on love is the answer approach to personal and world transformation. We risked to critique, in a mild way in this chapter, a person (and ideology), who is now running for the 2020 American political presidency under the Democratic party. She is a populist leader, with no experience in politics per se, althought a few years ago she ran for a local congress position in California but never made it very far. Now she is going for the 'big' position. It will be interesting to watch, but more importantly it will be interesting to see how her work (as part of the Fearlessness Movement) will emerge on the 'big' stage of American politics in a time of crisis.

I for one, will keep analyzing her work and offering her and her supporters ideas of how to better bring about a challenge and intervention to disrupt that problem of being (in her words) "trained by the world to think fearfully"... and, challenging her movement to look at fearism and fearlessness to better inform their own philosophy and politics.


1. Fisher, R. M., & Subba, D. (2016). Philosophy of fearism: A first East-West dialogue. Australia: Xlibris. 


ADDITIONAL NOTE - M. W. is also an endorser of one of my favorite philosophers Ken Wilber, for e.g.

And, in 2007... they met:  (Marianne & Ken)


OH, interesting The Washington Post (a rather conservative major newspaper in USA)... wants to spin the story of MW's campaign in the ruts of the traditional right winger folks like Dobson's "tough love" pitch for parents, which a lot of people bought hook line and sinker back 30 years ago... and, also if you see the headlines (below) on The Washington Post interview (and the photo shoot which really is a 'joke' and 'play' on MW, not taking her really seriously)--and, then you get the headlines... which one thinks she is again being played with by this media journalist and well... you can make up your own mind... I'm so skeptical of who is behind these newspapers--owned by a handful of the very elite she criticizes :


Feb. 19/19 by Anna Peele:

[Peele talks about miracles] [a small excerpt from her text for this article, which I nearly gag on]:

Today, it’s the eve of the 66-year-old’s declaration that she will be seeking the highest office in our country, during what is arguably one of its most terrifying times. Since Williamson is sitting at the head of the table, close enough to touch my arm, it feels like an appropriate moment to ask her to act as my own spiritual adviser. Not because I believe in miracles. Because I want to believe.

“I’m afraid,” I tell Williamson. Afraid about how bleak things feel under our current president; afraid of how angry people are. “I’m afraid of what will happen to the country,” I say. “And that there’s no going back.”

[sure, I'm glad they are talking about "fear"... but Peele's approach is too much of a grand skit and makes me angry... I trust/hope MW doesn't fall for this stuff from the mainstream media... okay, one other quote, an accurate view from MW's mouth, that is, A Course in Miracles, she says to Anna at one point:]

“Where there is light, there cannot be darkness,” Williamson says. “And where there’s love, there cannot be fear.”

“We’re hallucinating. And that’s what this world is: a mass hallucination, where fear seems more real than love. Fear is an illusion. Our craziness, paranoia, anxiety and trauma are literally all imagined”? [says Williamson... her absolutist philosophy, belief, faith, religion, spirituality, ideology?]... 

[If "fear is an illusion" a common claim of many esoteric religious teachings, E. and W., then what does that say about a philosophy of fearism and its claims... hmmmm... ?]




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