Landscape of Fear

The Lucidum Eye

One of my cats cowers with her tail and head held down, scrambling for cover at the sound of rain, even though she has been living indoors for two years. I found her at a campground when I was hiking one day, and even though we live in Florida, night temperatures had fallen below freezing. I don’t know how long she was out there, but this tiny cat had to withstand fairly extreme temperatures and brave the elements. It apparently left an indelible mark on her which has persisted all this time.

When I was an undergraduate psychology student, I remember in the course of my studies hearing and reading that animals, including humans, are wired to seek pleasure and avoid pain. It makes sense; pain is a mechanism that enables an organism to avoid certain things as they maneuver through their world, striving to ensure their basic needs are…

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