The Gift of Fear: And Other Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence

Here are some highlights from this Gavin de Becker book:

* You have the gift of a brilliant internal guardian that stands ready to warn you of hazards and guide you through risky situations.

* When free of judgment, we inherently respect the intuition of others. Sensing that someone else is in that special state of assessing hazard, we are alerted, just as when we see the cat or dog awaken suddenly from a nap and stare intently into a dark hallway.

* Zen master, Shunryu Suzuki said, “The mind of the beginner is empty, free of the habits of the expert, ready to accept, to doubt, and open to all the possibilities.”

* We tend to give our full attention to risks that are beyond our control (air crashes, nuclear-plant disasters) while ignoring those we feel in charge of (dying from smoking, poor diet, car accidents), accidents), even though the latter are far more likely to harm us.

* Nicholas Humphrey of Cambridge University explains that evolution gave us introspection specifically so we could “model other human beings and therefore predict their behavior.”

About Luke Ford

I've written five books (see My work has been covered in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and on 60 Minutes. I teach Alexander Technique in Beverly Hills (
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