I have a theory, that Egyptians have been conditioned to be afraid. Very afraid. Not just for the last 30 years but ever since Abdul Nasser became the president. This is why everyone has been silent for so long. I also think it is why some people are terrified at the thought of the government’s collapse. We were conditioned to be afraid of the Mulsim Brotherhood, evil Zionist plots, job loss, American meddling and so many other things. It is why we love conspiracy theories and believe them. It is why most of us are passive. Whenever someone decides to do something out of the box they are usually attacked. For example people quitting jobs and chasing dreams are usually attacked because they decided to leave the stability of a monthly paycheck. I wonder if this was the plan all along or if this was a byproduct of years of autocracy.
I myself have battled irrational fears and I understand how fear works. It is crippling. It is very difficult to fight your own fear.
My questions for Egyptian psychologists are:
1. Are some people suffering from Stockholm syndrome?
2. Have we been conditioned to be afraid?
3. What are the short term effects of a revolution on the population?
4. What are the long term effects of a revolution?
5. Can we break the barriers of fear?
6. Will we see a change in Egyptian society? Having watched people become more responsible and caring, will this be a long term change, or will people go back to their old ways once the dust settles?
7. How will relationships between family members change? Will children be more vocal with their parents?
8. Will we see a change in the Power Distance Index in Egypt? Will employees be more willing to confront employers when they see something wrong?