As much as it is so important to acknowledge the nature and role of "fear" (complex as it is do define) in human affairs (e.g., philosophy of fearism) there is an equally important inquiry and education to be had in regard to how "fear" is not the only motivating, or even most powerful motivating force in human affairs. The basic philosophical and theoretical arguments are rich and complex, beyond the scope of this blog. However, I want to point out that if you wish to understand my own thinking on this topic then you really have to engage the feminine (feminist) matrixial gaze theory (i.e., matrixial theory) of Bracha L. Ettinger. She is a post-Lacanian psychoanalyst, theorist, artist, activist, and most importantly, as I have written about her and her work (often with Barbara Bickel), she is the next most powerful psychoanalytic thinker since Lacan, and before that, since Freud. And, the good news... she is working on an entirely new basis for the theories of human motivation, subjectivity (or what she prefers to call transubjectivity).
Barbara and I and a small group of artists Barbara knows have studied Ettinger's difficult texts some years ago. After that year long study online, it has been awhile and so Barbara and I took up recently to study her videos online for 40 days, attempting this as a practice. We'll be sharing and writing more on that later. But just to introduce you, if you haven't already been introduced to Ettinger and matrixial theory (a non-phallocentric theory) then I will give a link to an excellent lecture on YouTube below. To close off this short blog I want to say that I am ever-ongoing impressed by the depth and "truth" from her work in understanding human beings, and her aesthetical-ethical foundation for guiding a new way of being beyond a fear-based orientation to the world. Her linking of early-mother and child bonding (mostly, in the womb) is brilliant psychoanalysis in my view, and she is slowly being recognized in the field and beyond as an important theorist. At one point in the video (below) she says, that it is our nature in connection in the matrixial borderspace of the I and non-I (self and Other) that from the beginning we were unknowingly embraced in "fascination and awe and compassion" which is our natural state of recognition of the Other and which is the protoethical ground for any ethics, and she adds to this claim that such an awe and compassion in the earliest stages of subjectivity (largely unconscious) is a connection/recognition/co-emergence "before fear, guilt, shame, action, cognition, abjection and disgust." This is the primordial matrixial ground for a theory of fearlessness, in my words.
Go to YouTube video on Ettinger's lecture in 2010 at the European Graduate University, where she often teaches: "Aesthetics, Protoethics and Matrixial Subjectivity."