Unless my studies have deceived me, it is intolerable anxiety that is the progenitor of morality. Of course, viewed on an individual level, we all have different breaking points, different points whereupon anxiety becomes intolerable — and we have different experiences, too, some bound to impress upon us a feeling that they are more or less tolerable that others. That is the lay of the land of moral sentiment, based on how it would seem if it were based on individual predilections and insecurities.
Morality, however, tends not to be so much individually determined as it is conventionally instituted by various arms of society, governing social order. Convention thus creates “fault lines”, or, if you prefer, predetermined ‘paths of least resistance’ within society, through which collective and individual anxieties can be discharged.
Convention has developed a system of patriarchy, which may have had practical value in earlier times, in terms of co-ordinating a division of labour based on gender lines. These days, there is little need for such a system,of gendered division of labor – nonetheless gender ideologies still prevail and there are still those who get to pull the strings, and those who must dance — patriarchy now fulfils a role of permitting those who have the greater share of power to discharge their anxieties. Of course others will have to pay for proclivities of those who cannot tolerate a higher level of anxiety than they are used to.
Those whose nervous systems are relatively delicate will break-out in a fit of moral fervor after a very low level of outside stimulation. Others will be different and make a few guarded remarks only at the highest levels of anxiety whilst they seek to manage reality’s effects.
Interesting how most modern day “Nietzscheans” choose to be insulated by patriarchy’s little moral buffer, finding automatic reprieve from social anxiety through embracing a conventionalised system of morality aimed against women. I’m sure they feel no anxiety at all, because it is already pre-emptively dealt with for them, thanks to the predominant value systems of Judeo-Christianity that are, fortuitously for them, ready to be invoked. Yet one doesn’t admire these latter day patriarchs for their particular mode of anxiety reduction.
1) It isn’t wrong or even a sign of weakness to experience anxiety. It’s what you do or do not do with that sensation that is telling.
2) It’s not necessarily wrong or a sign of weakness to go to war if someone is constantly infringing on your space, which causes you ongoing anxiety. It is the best management of anxiety, sometimes, to use your nervous energy to defend your mind and body. Just don’t do it in a way that pretends you are doing something different — i.e. domestic abuse is a sign of inner weakness, so don’t abuse others just because you are anxious.