Life without fear?

"Is it not scary?" - we think that in the next video ekstremal perform risky stunts. But one thing - to be able to control your fear, and quite another - not experience it at all. Is life possible without fear and what it looks like?

Life without fear?

"Wow!" - exclaims 44-year-old Natalia, curiously feeling ... a huge tarantula. She does not know fear. Cheerfully describes how winter almost became a victim of a robbery, but a criminal, struck by her composure, chose to leave the strange woman alone. Natalya rare genetic disease - a disease Urbach - Vite. It affects the brain amygdala human body - the plot, which plays a key role in the birth of emotions, and first of all - fear. Natalia disease itself does not seem to bother, she lives a full life ... That's just it is not able to assess the danger of its loss, and therefore, can not avoid it.

She has three children who can not get used to how to behave at times of their mother. "One day in the forest in front of us crawled snake - says her 12-year-old son. - We cried, and my mother quietly took her hand and tossed it away. " Natalia deprived not only fear, but also the ability to recognize it in others. Face, distorted with horror, leaves her in bewilderment: the very idea of ​​fear is not available to its understanding.

Meanwhile, the fear - one of the most important emotions. It allows us to assess the degree of peril, and instinctively avoid what could cause harm. "Full courage is meaningless in terms of evolution. A man who fears nothing, is unlikely to live long, "- says geneticist Gleb Shumyatski (Gleb Shumyatsky), head of the group of researchers who discovered the gene for fear *. Due to the fear of feeling our body recognizes that something is wrong in the outside world. Pathological fearlessness violates this "signaling" mechanism, and the person loses touch with his own feelings. But sometimes even the most ordinary people behave surprisingly fearless. In life-threatening situations (or their relatives), even very shy person can show unprecedented courage. Anthropologist Joseph Jordania (Joseph Jordania) believes that in such moments, we fall into a special state, which he calls "martial trance" **. This ability appeared due to natural selection: in a trance, our ancestors could scare a predator, which otherwise could not overcome. They seemed to forget about personal safety and acted in the interests of the group.

The thought of life without fear, no matter how tempting it may seemed, takes us away from reality. Sensing the danger, we are aware of our vulnerability, and hence - can protect ourselves.

* Neuron, 2002, vol. 34, № 2.

** J. Jordania "Why do People Sing?" (Logos, 2011).