Where is the line between insanity and creativity?
How does one define sanity?
Most do it by reference to themselves.
Some do it by reference to some model they have learned (either from culture, or by some set of investigations and assumptions).
What is “sound in mind”?
What does the aspect of firmness mean in a realm of the non-material?
What does “not mad” mean?
Are all senses of madness derivative of anger?
If one cannot be understood by others, yet ones understanding is sounder than others’; then who is mad?
Sanity is much overrated.
Sure there are many forms of malfunction that prevent minds from working, that can be hardware or software based (biological or belief based), and these can be seen as forms of insanity in a sense – as OM correctly identifies.
Creativity allows one to go beyond the bounds of the commonly known.
Creativity can allow some to go beyond the bounds of knowledge, and into the realm of uncertainty, of levels of confidence.
Creativity can allow one to see that all of logic and mathematics are great tools for building models, and reality is not a model, it is what it is.
Sure some models can deliver amazing degrees of accuracy under certain conditions, and all models found to date have boundary conditions beyond which reliability degrades to randomness.
We seem to be amazing entities.
We seem to be part of an amazing reality.
It all seems to be so much more than any of the stories common in any of our current cultures.
I don’t know anything with absolute confidence, and I have some very reliable tools that serve me well in most common situations.
Yes there does seem to be a boundary between creativity and insanity, and it seems that most who think they can clearly distinguish that boundary are probably on the insanity side of it.
Culture seems to be greatest propagator of mass insanity, with all of its unquestioned and unquestionable truths.
Reality seems to be far stranger than any story invented by man.
My father had a saying – “Call me anything you like, but don’t call me late for dinner” 😉
Labels do not make a thing what it is.
It is what it is.
We give it a label.
Labels put things in categories.
Some categories are useful at particular scales, and in particular contexts. These categories and their relationships to other categories help us to make sense of the world around us.
If I walked into the Battle between Richard and Saladin in 1191 talking like this – everyone but me would be certain I was mad.
Every word in language carries a lot of associations, and these associations change over time, and with different cultural experience.
To me, crusaders and fundamentalists are all very likely mistaken, all captured by the attractive simplicity of a belief in “The One True” …..
The evidence I have is highly suggestive that anyone making any claim to “Truth” is delusional, and I understand some of the many attractions of such delusions, at several different levels of biology and psychology.
To me, mistaken is likely to be an appropriate word for all fundamentalists and crusaders.