Alexander Averin

Friday, 6 June 2008


Dear Diary,

Leadership is based on inspiration, not domination; on cooperation, not intimidation.

William Arthur Ward

Our writing group’s homework for May.

The theme is intimidation. As if fear hadn’t been enough to tackle last month, now one of our members has delved deeper and suggested one of its compatriots, intimidation.

I think on it. Every day. Synchronistically, the word intimidation starts to crop up all the time. On radio, TV, in newspapers and magazines; it seems to be everywhere. Isn’t it always the way?

The word keeps breaking down in my mind:


Make someone timid (within).

I think on timidity; this brings me back to fear again but this new word reeks of cowardice, weakness, nervousness, not a good mix of emotions to own up to feeling. I straightaway rebel against this emotion. It’s an instinctive thing I guess. My Irish genes will out; I always relish a challenge, always ready for the fight.

I remember the O’Connor family motto.

Nec timeo spurno

I neither fear nor spurn.

Intimidation. It’s a kind of war really, a battle of the aforementioned nerves. The enemy uses it as a form of deterrent, a means of control. S/he terror-ises. Terrorism can be the underdog’s unholy fight for freedom but can also be a weapon to rule by those in charge if they try to make us see it as a real and ever-constant threat, (whether it is or not). So do we live under its reign whatever flag it flies?

Scaremongering needs Fear and Alarm as its sidekicks when Big Brother comes calling and is it me or does He seem to be a constant caller these days? Is this the Age of Intimidation? Is it part of a ruling power’s armoury, so much so that now we see the authorities as bogeymen as their sabre-rattling envelops us all in a veil of fear? (or tries to).

In - timidation involves the use of untruths and blackmail. And in order for threats to succeed they have to make us apprehensive and fearful (that F word again) - of whatever reprisal may befall us. So if the threat is a real one then fear is indeed a wise response. But shouldn’t we make it a positive response? By fighting against intimidation in all its guises. By being positive and fighting negativity. By joining together in peace and fighting against war.

Someone, I forget who, wrote that fear is the opposite of love and that fear dissolves in the light of love.

So I’ll sign off now with Love and Light and with just a little Hope too.

How about Hope for next month’s homework?

Bye for now,
Go mbeannai Dia duit,


DJ Kirkby said...

I would like to be (perhaps) slightly controversial and suggest that the greatest fear stems from a lack of knowledge.

Elizabethd said...

Thought provoking stuff.
You should have some intersting work on that subject!

LittleBrownDog said...

Interesting reading, as always, Cait and a lovely quote at the beginning. I wholehearted agree - fear is not an good motivator, whereas inspiration and belief are.

Great family motto.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

I often feel intimidated by people, particularly those who I feel have been better educated than I and seem more knowledgeable. It's one of my weaknesses to cower in front of power. But then I am reminded that we are all the same, beneath the clothes and the accent. I felt especially intimidated by a woman not so long ago and I often wonder why that was.

CJ xx

Blossomcottage said...

Eleanor Roosevelt said
" No one can make you feel inferior without your permission." -- I think intimidation leads to a feeling of inferiority so perhaps she should have said
" No one can indimidate you without your permission"

CAMILLA said...

Hello Cait,

An interesting post. Intimidation - intentional behaviour can cause a person fear, injury or even harm.

I must admit I have experienced intimidation, it is truly horrid, now I am able to deal with it, stamp it out completely. The reason I believe that people are intimidating others is because they use it for their self-empowerment, to emotionally minipulate.

A wonderful quote at the beginning of your post Cait.


Frances said...

Hello Cait,

Thank you for another inspiring and provocative blog. Asking questions, examining reasons for actions and reactions. And then, you bring us more of your love and light.

I will try to pass along that love and light in my encounters today ... and tomorrow, too!

ChrisH said...

That was really interesting - even just reading the word was enough to make me recoil at the moment but you found your way round it. Yes, hope - that sounds good.

Pondside said...

Indeed - let's make HOPE our motto.
When you wrote about intimidation and Big Brother I found myself nodding 'yes'. It is bullying in another form. Thank you for a very provoking blog.

ed said...


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