Originality and Psychosis
Psychosis and originality are more similar than is apparent. The formation of an original idea involves blending knowledge or emotion from previous events into a new, albeit derived, idea. It is the synthesis of an idea that is both novel and comprehensible to others. A delusion, a common symptom of psychosis, is formed by blending knowledge and emotion into a new, but derived, feeling. The only two differences between delusions and imagination are that delusions are emotional, not logical, and that an imagined idea can be conveyed to another, who can understand it, while a delusion can never really be understood by anyone but the deluded individual. So perhaps genius and madness are not so far from each other as is commonly thought.
Ruby3881 wrote on June 9, 2015, 5:48 PM
It's long been recognized that madness and inspiration are close cousins. I think perhaps an even bigger difference is in how others perceive the individual. If respected and asked to explain, a deluded individual may appear more sane. If doubted and rejected, a great scientific mind can seem to be a madman.