A Man Without Hope

While it is a truism that a man without fear is a man without hope, it is a truth that a man without hope is a man without fear.

– jonolan

Hope is the belief or faith that an individual’s circumstances will improve, or at least not deteriorate further. This allows for the existence of the awareness of- and concern about consequence. A man who possesses some hope for his future is necessarily concerned about the potential negative impacts of his actions; he will not make a habit of engaging in potentially self damaging acts without at least some concern and trepidation. The lack of such hope removes the specter of negative consequence from a man’s mind and leaves him free to take such actions as he will without restraint.

Most men who lack hope are sunk in apathy; the lack of fear is concomitant with a lack of motivation, so that the individual tends to initiate few activities. These people are essentially passive, but may respond in unexpected and unrestrained manner to externally imposed stimuli. Some men however respond to the lack of hope with perilous vigor. They undertake courses of action that engender great change and greater danger to all those unlucky enough to surround them.

Related Reading:

Proverb Lore Many sayings, wise or otherwise, on many subjects, gleaned from many sources
The Life of Benjamin Franklin With Many Choice Anecdotes and admirable sayings of this great man never before published by any of his biographers
Why Do We Say It?: The Stories Behind the Words, Expressions and Cliches We Use
Butter My Butt and Call Me a Biscuit: And Other Country Sayings, Say-So's, Hoots and Hollers
An Introduction to Philosophy

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7 Responses to “A Man Without Hope”

  1. Christy Says:

    Engaging! I think I might know where you’re coming from, but would you care to explicate further the following statement? “Most men who lack hope are sunk in apathy; the lack of fear is concomitant with a lack of motivation, so that the individual tends to initiate few activities.”
    I’m not sure I agree; it would seem fear would be the facilitator of passivity – whereas a lack of fear would embolden one to live with freedom, to act, to not be bound by “what ifs”?

  2. Aldo Says:

    I agree with the comment posted above. the only thing that controls men is fear. Fear of loss. Zen’s great striving is to remove the desire for something and the fear. WIthout hope all avenues are open. Risk can be undertaken freely. Apathy is not the correct term for what the oroginal writer wrote.

    Withdrawl and energy conservation are seen in victims of all sorts. Energy is not understood by many for what it truly is. Energy is the very cellular drive that allows one to move towards the hard wiring that is evolutionarily loaded. All actions of humans are hard wired at the core. Energy protection comes in emotional pursuits also.

    A Man without hope does not mean that the man has given up. Just as doomedl ships and aircraft passengers do not all just stop trying to survive (although they will not). What it truly is, is a liberation for the person to do and act without first meta analyzing.

    This, again, was the aim of Zen.

  3. Ed Majcher Says:

    Are you a fan of the Daredevil comics because the line “I man without hope is a man without fear.” comes straight out of the Frank Miller run in the 80′s.

  4. jonolan Says:

    No, not really. It’s interesting though that someone else came up with the same thought.

  5. Omar Says:

    A man without fear, is a man without hope. But, a man with belief is a man that chooses not to fear.

  6. jonolan Says:

    I’m not sure about that, Omar. Hope and fear are linked and a man with belief always has a source of hope and, hence, a source of fear.

  7. Paradigm9 Says:

    A man without fear doesn’t and has never existed. He will fear his own mortality, inability to have dominion over everything, or… Making himself vulnerable ie- relationships.

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