It has been asked in various places what scares Imperial sophonts the most. Herewith is the answer:
As a side-note, you will observed that the answers here are mostly existential, not physical. Physical fear never had much hold on the eldraeic psyche in the first place (none at all, for those with access to battletrance or other high-order counterphobotics), so it doesn’t rank high enough to make it onto the list.
In roughly ascending order, then:
- Loss of control (minor)
- Wilful ignorance (i.e., becoming the sort of person who would indulge that)
- Loss of control (major); submission
- An end to ambition
- Loss or corruption of identity, or of will
Of course, in a very real sense, and speaking for the culture as a whole, the correct answer is not a damn thing. It’s year N of a long, long Golden Age for the Empire, great and glorious beyond all greatness and glory, the future is brighter still, and nothing seems beyond their grasp.
(This is not a culture, shall we say, lacking in self-confidence.)