Dr Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature - School on Blog
It's a different world you enter into when you are gripped by anxiety, tension and fear, sometimes to the point of panic. You find yourself surrounded by walls. You don't only feel as prisoner, you are in a coffin. You must escape! You must get out! You are suffering of claustrophobia.
The world of phobias is virtually endless. A beautiful place may turn out to be a torture chamber (ecclesiophobia - fear of the church), a beautiful relationship becomes a bondage (gamophobia or fear of marriage). Persistent phobias may graduate into syndrome. Imagine yourself in a world where you are in constant fear of anything, everything, without any known cause (panphobia), and worst, if that constant fear is the fear of death (thanatophobia)
Imagine yourself being surrounded by different kinds of merchandise like in this sari-sari store, and people milling around plus the typical irritating noise typical in a market . Is this a case of claustrophobia? Or much more? And yet vendors get used to it - and even love their work and make it a lifetime livelihood. So what is phobia?
Everyone of us has phobias, a term that has become very common nowadays.
The truth is that many of our fears are not actually phobias. Thus a phobia may be regarded as a psychological phenomenon, personality problem, or simply anxiety, shyness, distraught. It could be the result of discrimination, prejudice, after-effect of say, a horror movie, and inability to adjust to a new situation.
Actually there are 1001 cause-and-effect cases that are attributed to phobias, and many of them are just invented terms. There is no end to the list which in the first place are not all supported by scientific evidences.
If our world is full of phobias how come we still can manage to go on with life? And find it beautiful? Psychologists say we have the ability to rise above uncertainties and fears associated with things and events unfamiliar and strange. Our rationality and high intelligence help us in facing and overcoming them - and even forget them afterwards. This is the wonder of human will and determination.
Is there a term for phobia to cats? Cats are second to the dog as man's best friend. It is ironical that these animals are the cause of phobia, something parents and our values have to correct early with our children.
In the scientific aspect a phobia (from the Greek for fear or morbid fear) is an irrational, intense and persistent fear of certain situations, activities, things, animals, or people. The main symptom of this disorder is the excessive and unreasonable desire to avoid the feared stimulus. Phobias are generally caused by an event recorded and labeled in the brain as deadly or dangerous. Thus whenever a specific situation is approached again (and again) the body reacts as if the event were happening repeatedly afterward. In which case there is need of medical, psychiatric, or spiritual advise.
Go over this list and mark those that are applicable to you, and rate them as mild or serious. In this way you will be able to assess your fears and overcome them, on your own effort, or with professional help. There are really many phobias beyond this list. No one knows really, and if alleged phobia is an accepted term and condition. This is the consequence of living in a postmodern world.
- acrophobia – heights
- agarophobia – open space
- agyrophobia or dromophobia – crossing the street
- amaxophobia – riding in a car
- ambulophobia – walking
- aviophobia – fear of flying
- androphobia – men
- gamophobia – marriage
- ecclesiophobia – church
- gerascophobia – growing old
- thanatophobia – fear of death.
- thermophobia – fear of heat.
- tokophobia – fear of childbirth.
- hagiophobia – saints and holy things
- anthophobia - flowers
- aviophobia, aviatophobia – fear of flying.
- hydrophobia - water (a positive sign of a mad dog)Below are some examples:
- chemophobia – prejudice against artificial substances in favor of "natural" substances.
- ephebiphobia – fear or dislike of youth or adolescents.
- homophobia – fear or dislike of homosexuals or homosexuality.
- xenophobia – fear or dislike of strangers or the unknown.
- agoraphobia – fear of places or events where escape is impossible
- agraphobia – fear of sexual abuse.
- algophobia – fear of pain.
- agyrophobia – fear of crossing roads.
- anthropophobia – fear of people or being in a company, a form of social phobia.
- arachnophobia – fear of spiders.
- atychiphobia – fear of failure
- claustrophobia – fear of having no escape and being closed in.
- dentophobia, odontophobia – fear of dentists and dental procedures
- disposophobia, better known as "compulsive hoarding" – the fear of getting rid of or losing things.
- dysmorphophobia, or body dysmorphic disorder – a phobic obsession with a real or imaginary body defect.
- genophobia, coitophobia – fear of sexual intercourse.
- gerascophobia – fear of growing old or aging.
- gerontophobia – fear of growing old, or a hatred or fear of the elderly
- glossophobia – fear of speaking in public or of trying to speak.
- gynophobia – fear of women.
- hemophobia, haemophobia – fear of blood.
- spectrophobia – fear of mirrors and one's own reflections.
- nostophobia - fear of returning home
- nyctophobia, achluophobia - fear of darkness.
- lygophobia, scotophobia – also fear of darkness.
- paraskavedekatriaphobia, paraskevidekatriaphobia, friggatriskaidekaphobia – fear of Friday the 13th.
- scolionophobia – fear of school.
- phasmophobia – fear of ghosts, spectres or phantasms.
- philophobia - fear of love
- phobophobia – fear of having a phobia.
- pyrophobia – fear of fire.
- sociophobia – fear of people or social situations.
- Panphobia – fear of everything or constant fear of an unknown cause. ~
NOTE: The terms mentioned here are not all recognized scientifically. Many are not found in the dictionary. Most of these are classified psychological. Other phobias are non-psychological, fictional, jocular, biological, or simply arising from our relationships with the environment, animals and the like. Pause and reflect. Make a list of the phobias you have identified from this list and from other sources. Resolve to overcome them and live a happier and healthier life. You can do it!
References: Time magazine, Wikipedia