The idea for the trilogy was suggested by an older man telling that he didn’t think life was ruled by love, or reason, or money, or the pursuit of happiness — but by fear. This smart-but cynical guy’s position was that most people’s actions are motivated by fear of being hungry, fear of being hurt, fear of being alone, fear of being robbed, etc., and that people don’t make choices based on hope that something good will happen, but in fear that something bad will happen.

I reacted to this the way all of us tend to react to generalities: “Well, I’m not like that!” But then I started thinking about it more, watching the way people around me behaved, and I soon realised that there was something to this viewpoint, So I sketched out the three “theaters of fear,” as I saw them: how fear works inside us (“The Enemy Within”), how fear is used against us (“The Weapon”), and how fear feeds the mob mentality (“Witch Hunt”).

As it happened, the last theme was easiest to deal with, so it was written first, and consequently appeared first on record, and the other two followed in reverse order for the same reason

Neil Peart on the “Fear” trilogy by Rush, still an interesting philosophy