Someone asked Gary what his definition of insanity was ( according to this reality), and this is what he said: “Insanity is not functioning like anybody else.” Wow! If you comply with what your family, or society, or church group or ethnic culture, or school says is appropriate, then you’re seen as sane. If, on the other hand, you see the world very differently, or question why you would want 2.50 children and a while picket fence, you may run the risk of being called insane, or at least someone with a problem that needs addressing.
Did you know from a very early age that you were different? That you didn’t fit in with everyone else? Did you receive the judgments, spoken or unspoken that you needed to change, to cut off who you were in favor of being like everyone else? Did you then go to how wrong and bad you were and try to become what you weren’t? It’s amazing how many children are encouraged to stop being who they are and work at fitting in with the rest of the family or society. And yet it’s understandable too. If a child is going to be judged as having some level of “mental problems” or insanity for not being like the other children, many parents are so concerned about the stigma that they and their children will earn from the judgment, that they would rather sacrifice their child’s individuality than have them stand out from the crowd. Often that choice is rationalized that they are making it easier for the child. What a choice! You can deny who you are and create a false acceptable you, or you can be you and be judged as wrong, different and potentially insane.
The irony is that many so called mental illnesses such as depression and addiction are actually the result of people having judged themselves harshly for being different and repressed their innate talents, abilities, temperaments and awarenesses in order to please others. This combination of self destructive behaviors makes it almost impossible for a person to have any joy, happiness or peace in their lives.
All of this involves people buying into the idea that there is a right way to do things, “the other people” know what it is, and everyone should adapt to that. What if that belief system was actually a more accurate definition of insanity.
What if not showing up as you and twisting yourself into a pretzel to fit, were the hallmarks of true insanity. Seems rather light, doesn’t it?
The Merriam-Webster online dictionary defines sane as: “having a healthy mind : able to think normally”
And – “based on reason or good judgment : rational or sensible”
Are you aware that all of the great creators did not think normally? That’s what made them great! Consider Albert Einstein, Nelson Mandela and Michelangelo. If they had thought “normally” and in a way that allowed their thinking to be judged as “rational and sensible”, we would be missing some major contributions to this world! Are you willing to be as insane as they were? To be the different as you are and to be as totally out of the box? Are you willing to be considered insane by some in this reality? How much fun could that be?