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Thread: To be feared

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Risen View Post
    Have truer words ever been spoken?
    Yes, but Machiavelli is only correct for the emotional part of ruling. He does not say much about the logical part. His writings are not sufficiently precise and clear, and while they may talk about the truth of feelings, they omit logic to a point that his writings could corrupt the mind of some leaders. Frederick the Great wrote an "Anti-Machiavelli" book for that matter, because he considered Machiavelli's writing to be a danger greater to humanity than epidemics.

    The reason why I'm saying this is that it is not directly fear - it is justice which indirectly inspires fear of retribution if the rules are broken. A better term would be respect. Fear without fairness breeds rebellion. Just using the word "fear" without precising what I have said makes Machiavelli prone to misinterpretation. The issue is probably not with his original ideas, but with the lack of precision in language used that can make him easily misunderstood.

    Finally, is it better to be feared than to be loved? It is irrelevant: it is better to be respected.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Falcon View Post
    Yes, but Machiavelli is only correct for the emotional part of ruling. He does not say much about the logical part. His writings are not sufficiently precise and clear, and while they may talk about the truth of feelings, they omit logic to a point that his writings could corrupt the mind of some leaders. Frederick the Great wrote an "Anti-Machiavelli" book for that matter, because he considered Machiavelli's writing to be a danger greater to humanity than epidemics.

    The reason why I'm saying this is that it is not directly fear - it is justice which indirectly inspires fear of retribution if the rules are broken. A better term would be respect. Fear without fairness breeds rebellion. Just using the word "fear" without precising what I have said makes Machiavelli prone to misinterpretation. The issue is probably not with his original ideas, but with the lack of precision in language used that can make him easily misunderstood.

    Finally, is it better to be feared than to be loved? It is irrelevant: it is better to be respected.
    Yes, I do suppose people could misinterpret it. The concept of fear, as it relates to leadership, involves both emotional fear and respect. A leader that is "feared" has power because the people respect his power, and have a healthy "fear" of going against that power. They need not be outright scared of him or dread what the leader may do, but they surely know that to go against the leader would be to their detriment. It is the promise of harm, unhappiness, pain, and all unpleasant things that may come to you that breeds fear in the emotional sense, and that promise is born of the "respect" for the leader's power.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Risen View Post
    Those who feared me never even hit me and instead ran away.
    Did you conclude they feared you because they didn't hit you and ran away?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Risen View Post
    Yes, I do suppose people could misinterpret it. The concept of fear, as it relates to leadership, involves both emotional fear and respect. A leader that is "feared" has power because the people respect his power, and have a healthy "fear" of going against that power. They need not be outright scared of him or dread what the leader may do, but they surely know that to go against the leader would be to their detriment. It is the promise of harm, unhappiness, pain, and all unpleasant things that may come to you that breeds fear in the emotional sense, and that promise is born of the "respect" for the leader's power.
    Right. I agree with whay you say, and that if it is not explained well people could misinterpret it.

  5. #25
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    I find love and fear to be so intertwined that it is hard to receive one without also experiencing the other (at least in some part).

  6. #26
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    I don't see no point trying to scare people (except for fun). The people who are feared seem to be more afraid also. Fear is used to get power, or maintain power. When you are in power you fear for losing the power. So, you have to run faster all the time. Even if everyone is afraid of you, you don't know that, so you need to keep running.

    I think it is far more useful to not be afraid of anything. And that is something that can be achieved through love.

  7. #27

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    Perhaps in politics, this is the very definition of realpolitik I think, but it would not be true personally surely?

    It is one thing to be assured of your safety by striking fear into the hearts of strangers or wrong doers but quite another to wish that your significant other fears you or your children fear you or dependents fear you, wouldnt you say?

    An authoritarian ruler will demand submission or cause fear, a totalitarian one will demand love and eschew so much as apathy as criminal.

  8. #28
    Senior Member LunarMoon's Avatar
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    Being feared is only a useful state when you’ve already obtained a position of power and desire to maintain it. While you are making the climb to that position, however, you will want to be loved, since no one will very well fear a low level. If you enact violence without power then you or thug, a common street criminal; if you enact violence with power then you are a politician.

    As for me, personally, I would rather be primarily loved rather than feared. Tyrants are looked on rather poorly in the history book and unless you create an infrastructure to maintain that fear, as the mafioso and the judicial system do, your power will dissolve immediately after your death. People still follow Gandhi as an inspiration but few people practice the teachings of Hitler in fear of any sort of harm.
    Surgeons replace one of your neurons with a microchip that duplicates its input-output functions. You feel and behave exactly as before. Then they replace a second one, and a third one, and so on, until more and more of your brain becomes silicon. Since each microchip does exactly what the neuron did, your behavior and memory never change. Do you even notice the difference? Does it feel like dying? Is some other conscious entity moving in with you?
    -Steven Pinker on the Ship of Theseus Paradox

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    I find love and fear to be so intertwined that it is hard to receive one without also experiencing the other (at least in some part).
    Healthy fear, yes.

    If you are loved, truly loved, there is a fear of displeasure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Risen View Post
    Have truer words ever been spoken?
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonnyboy View Post
    Honestly, whenever I think about concepts such as intimidation, fear, fighting, etc, I think about stupidity and apes.
    Let me guess: you're not very good at intimidation, fear, fighting, etc.?

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