Scientific Knowledge for Modern Epicureans - the Means to Dispel Fear and Anxiety

  • We live in a time in which we have access to knowledge to scientifically understand phenomenon and we value science as the tool for the proper understanding of the world. Proper knowledge about the world dispels fear and anxiety and most importantly leads to making more prudent decisions. Proper knowledge also helps maintain peace of mind as a foundation from which to more deeply enjoy pleasures which arise.

    After a recent move to a place which gets frequent thunderstorms, I noticed a lightening warning sign posted in a very big open park near where I live. I've lived most of my life in places with very few thunderstorms, so never had to think about it before. Here is a good read on the science of lightening. Also the National Weather service lightening safety tips.

    Beyond observable phenonmena, there have been incorrect ideas (myths) in our current times which gain a following on the internet - for example past stories about a possible flip of magnetic poles -- read here about why not to panic. Rather than observable phenonmena, this is dealing with the hype we may encounter on the internet and in the news.

    Yet there is other science which points toward very real potential future problems, such as a strong solar flare disrupting the power grid, all electronics, and the internet. I would be curious here to know how others think about such things -- and does pondering the uncertainty of the future bring us back around to focus on enjoying more sensory and active pleasures?

  • There's also the human-made version of the solar flare: EMP weapons:…p-attacks-protection.html

    I bet Matt would be in a better position than most of us to know whether EMP weapons are fictional or real and how much "worry" to exert about those.

    As for pondering the uncertainty of the future, I would say once we identify that:

    "... with us lies the chief power in determining events, some of which happen by necessity) and some by chance, and some are within our control; for while necessity cannot be called to account, he sees that chance is inconstant, but that which is in our control is subject to no master, and to it are naturally attached praise and blame"

    ... then we act appropriately to mitigate those possibilities that are reasonable to mitigate.

    As far as the rest goes, and pondering beyond that, we just take the realistic attitude that "we must then bear in mind that the future is neither ours, nor yet wholly not ours, so that we may not altogether expect it as sure to come, nor abandon hope of it, as if it will certainly not come."

    And we take some degree of confidence that: "In but few things chance hinders a wise man, but the greatest and most important matters, reason has ordained, and throughout the whole period of life does and will ordain."