Scientists say we are afraid of the dark as our bodies become vigilant at night, a remnant of our ancestors who evolved to process information in the dark. If you have ever asked how to be prepared for phobias, you’ll probably want to know more about the science of harmful fears, as people can be scared without actually being threated by something. In the developed world, it is a healthful time as the murder rate is dropping, our houses protect us and relatively few people go hungry, but still we we walk around anxious because of terrorists, Republicans, or our legacy the result of millions of years of running as ancient species.
The U.S. government today makes mistakes as well, and history gives us examples, such as backing Carlos Salinas de Gortari or signing NAFTA, which spelled a summary execution of the indigenous, but on the dawn of 1994 we rose up in response to a foreign mandate. Exposed and defenseless, in the past we stood a good chance of playing the role of Big Mac and our ancestors evolved in order escape that fate, at least long enough to pass our genes, responses which still frame how our bodies work when being stalked by large cats, giant hyenas, cave lions, snakes, wolves, false saber-toothed cats or giant kangaroos. As children, in a lot of ways, we’re more cautious about darkness because, after all, we imagine some childish things, but it might just be an evolutionary trait to survive predators, according to the researchers, due to innate fear stems from when we were not the top predators we became later.
Dr Emily Holmes from Oxford University scares people in the lab, simulating the symptoms of PTSD by invoking flashbacks – a hallmark symptom, and eventually noticed that there are a lot of individual differences in what intrudes into people consciousness, but all are scared by a sudden realisation that they’re going to be killed, basically in line with the trauma in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of psychiatric disorders. Using a film ensured that the participants would experience thoughts in typical experimental paradigms, as well as surprising lectric shocks for a physical reaction, as they’re trying to create a response that simulates the PTSD through very disturbing events. If we go further back, the diversity of things that ate us ranges from predators such as crocodiles, and sharks, to more opportunistically, predators such as wild animals or pythons, and most of us escaped such risks by living in cities where our ancestors killed the dangerous tigers or giant kangaroos, and yet we haven’t escaped, the burden of trying to get away.
To make that scarier, predators hunted at a time when we are vulnerable because of our poor eyesight, so it was important to stay safe, leading to a nightly fear we still experience today, according to Gizmodo, a study by the University of Toronto, which claimed that anxiety isn’t a lingering fear that our ancestors needed to keep them on their toes.