The Instigator
easy2know
Pro (for)
Winning
42 Points
The Contender
Ragnar_Rahl
Con (against)
Losing
13 Points

Is there a fine line between genius and insanity..?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/26/2007 Category: Health
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 12,625 times Debate No: 108
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (12)
Votes (17)

 

easy2know

Pro

I believe that yes, most genius's or those with high IQ's think on a different scale than the average person, and seem a bit insane. They make themselves that way, through over-analyzing, internalizing everything, predictive thought patterns, unrealistic expectations of society and the people around them, and an array of other self-defeating, self-destructive thought patterns.

Anyone who excepts this challenge must understand my motives first and far-most are to hear other possibility's, most of my research has lead me to believe my conclusions. Which is only my opinion, but with all the intellect I see floating around here would love to hear contrary proof, as some of the end results are indeed sad. Winning is NOT my motive, LEARNING is.

My premise is not based on being eccentric, but on how most genius's are more susceptible or vulnerable to insanity.
Ragnar_Rahl

Con

I would not contest that many highly intelligent people develop various pathologies that may be described as insanity.

However, correlation is not causation. I would argue that this is probably not something intrinsic to genius, but rather a result of how others tend to interact with such highly intelligent people.

Human history is filled with those who would seek to damn the human mind and the reason it relies upon, consciously or otherwise. The two greatest examples of this tendency are Plato's Allegory of the Cave and Kant's doctrine that the senses tell us nothing about objects in themselves, and only "transcendental a priori knowledge" does, a euphemism for blind faith, and because he decides what is a priori, faith in him.

This is damaging to any human, because man's continued existence qua man relies upon the use of the mind, especially reason (unlike the lower animals, instincts are insufficient to this goal). From the person who realized that he could make meat more edible with fire, to the one who realized plants came from seeds and farmed them, to the thousands of discoveries that went in to creating the computers and their interconnections we are using at this moment; every day of our lives relies upon the efficacy of human reason.

The more intelligent you are, the more often you are reminded of this by your experiences. Now keep in mind the many admonitions that occur to "be humble," to "have faith," to abdicate the mind. Those not obeying are often damned most loudly as evil. Ad nauseum may have no logical effect, but psychologically it often works, and causes ultimately, consciously or otherwise, the genius to agree. Now that he has established the mind as wrong, since he continues to rely on it, he must damn himself as evil, and yet have no way other than suicide to become "good." It is not hard to see how insanity results.
Debate Round No. 1
easy2know

Pro

First thank-you for accepting this challenge Ragnar_ Rahl.

As you stated you would not contest that many highly intelligent people develop various pathologies that "may" be described as insanity. It is not that they "might" be described as insane, it is exactly what is concluded, from some of the least known to some of the most famous geniuses.

When you speak of interaction my take is your reference of others is the more majority of peoples.? Believing this is what you meant we can establish others are of the norm, geniuses are above the norm, correct.? I therefore would argue your point that its not how others interact with such highly intelligent people, but how highly intelligent people perceive and actually label others. http://i204.photobucket.com... As some of Einstein's theory's on the amount of brain power we use, such as measuring the percentage of the normal brain to a genius was commendable, however flawed, as we all know wisdom does not always mean more intelligence. My feelings are still like what was stated in the opening arguments , through over-analyzing, internalizing everything, predictive thought patterns, unrealistic expectations of society and the people around them, and an array of other self-defeating, self-destructive thought patterns.

Just to give others a flavor of you using this analogy as a presumption of how genius's may end up and have no recourse:
Plato's Allegory of the Cave is the account of a group of prisoners living in an underground den. These prisoners live chained like animals, facing a wall, and are unable to turn around. In the following paragraphs, I will explain the concept of Plato's Allegory of the Cave, and how it relates to Plato's idea of truth. First of all, these prisoners have lived in this dark seclusion for their entire lives, and have yet to see sunlight. These people have missed out both their child and adult lives. There are chains around their necks and legs, so they are unable to move. They can only see what is in front of them, due to the chains. There is a fire above them, and behind them. There is also a wall that separates them from the fire, and on this wall there is a show of puppets. There are guards that walk around the prisoners, and sometimes speak to them. The prisoners can only see their own shadows and the shadows of the other prisoners that they fire reflects onto the wall. When the guards spoke, the prisoners may hear the echo of their voice, which seemed to come from their shadows on the wall. In Plato's Republic, Books VI and VII, he describes what might happen if the prisoners escaped to end of the den, and into the light. Plato says:...the prisoners are released and disabused of their error. At first, when any of them is liberated and compelled suddenly to stand up and turn his neck round and walk and look towards the light, he will suffer sharp pains...By this statement, Plato explains that the prisoners may never be able to leave this darkness, because they have become accustomed to the darkness. Therefore the only truth the prisoners have ever known is the darkness and shadows. They will probably never be able to leave the underground den, because of the pain of looking into the sunlight. This truth is inevitable, and can never be disproved.

Therefore, the only truth the prisoners have ever known is one that they cannot ever escape. They are permanently bound to the underground den, unless they can muster up enough strength and courage to venture out of the den, and into the sunlight. The truth, that the den is the prisoners only sight and that the fire is their only sun, can not be escaped. The prisoners must journey to the end of the cave to escape, and that journey is something the prisoners do not have the strength to do. If your point is the genius is somehow locked into his or her world believing it is the only correct way, I concur, but to conclude one has not the strength to escape is debatable, as our own uncivilized treatments of humans proved in the Yuma Territorial Prison that was operational just a mere 100 years ago, kinda like where there is a way there is a will. To end here I'm hoping that you don't think there isn't hope for some that could reach psychosis, schizophrenia, etc.

Your analogy of on the more intelligent you are, is outstanding, (could we (others) be the catalyst of their demise..??) this is why maybe some of us need to apply the breaks (sort of speak) before one spirals into such a gruesome thought process, almost like how do we get through to the many anorexia's that brings so many needless deaths ? Perhaps another learning debate ? So far your words are showing some resolve in this issue..who knows maybe you can prove that walking softly and caring a big stick is not the end all..and that its time we put the big sticks away...:o)...ty..looking forward to your response..!
Ragnar_Rahl

Con

That first bit all depends on the definition of insanity used of course, along with which genius.

Fortunately Einstein was not a psychologist, because that theory of his regarding "percentage of brain used for normal people and geniuses" is based on the pop-psychology idea that average people "only use 10% of their brains-" a false premise The truth of the matter is that although most of the brain is not used for conscious thought, it has no appendix or facsimile thereof, all the various motor and sensory processing as well as many other functions take up all the brain space. Neurons not used tend to die early on. Fortunately my psychology class is useful for something ^_^.

I'm not sure how exactly predictive thought and analytical thought lead to insanity, although internalizing certainly can (a product not of being a genius, but of accepting philosophicala subjectivism or idealism). I'm also not quite sure what "unrealistic expectations" are intrinsic to genius.

Just to clarify (I'm not sure I made this clear) the relevant information in the allegory of the cave is the "shadows on the wall." It was an example of philosophy in history being anti-reason, anti-reality, by regarding it all as subjective construction, and thus creating cognitive dissonance in those subscribing to it. My point has nothing to do with the prison, because I do not subscribe to the idea that men are locked into one. There is certainly hope, the hope is that they realize the walls don't exist and the data of their senses comes directly from that light of truth (at least for those whose insanity is of purely psychological cause, anything involving brain damage obviously requires a physical solution, but most of those can't be considered geniuses.)

I'm kind of confused by your last paragraph, I don't see how talking or walking softly and carrying a big stick has anything to do with this. In case you make that clear later, I'll make clear for now that I fully support talking and walking at a healthy volume and carrying a big stick/gun/whatever (that is only to be used in self-defense however).
Debate Round No. 2
easy2know

Pro

The path I eluded to (insane) was the thin line the genius walks to insanity, and yes depending on "some" genesis's not all.

Science has been promoting the body identification curriculum for years. This is the ongoing promotion of the false belief that consciousness is a product of the brain and the mind is in the brain and not an independent entity. Contending that the mind can be manipulated by outside sources. Science promotes the premise for the lie that there is no free will. Your view of most of the brain is not used for conscious thought is not shared by all. As this is conjecture on my part (but similar views are shared) many do believe we use all or most of our brain. We don't have the space or time here to explain the many different views. However I will try to explain some, as it does relate to this topic. There have been significant changes over time in the aspects of brain development that have captured public attention. Twenty years ago, people were fascinated by the ability to measure developmental changes in the degree to which 'neurons' in different areas of the brain become wrapped in the white, fatty matter "myelin" that "insulates" nerve cells and affects the "speed" with which nerve impulses are transmitted from one cell to another. Myelination is, in fact, affected by the young child's behavioral experiences and nutrition. Today, the public is more focused on information, not all of it new, about the rate of synapse development, particularly on studies showing that there is a tremendous burst of synapse formation early in life, followed by a decline in synapse number, apparently extending into adolescence in some areas of the brain. Combined with evidence that synapses that are used are retained and those not used are eliminated, there has been a frenzy of concern expressed as "use it or lose it" in the first years of life. It turns out, however, that synapse elimination is a normal part of development. In comparison to the brain's wiring, far less attention has been paid to the neurochemistry of early brain development, which is essential to the brain's capacity to learn from experience and is likely to play an important role in the regulation of behavior. The origin of the myth is supposedly that early studies indicated that not all of the brain's functions occur at once, at any given time. If you're focusing hard on a math problem, for example, your right brain wouldn't be writing poetry on the other side. The "math section" of your brain would be active. Later on your "poetry section" may be active. However, the time lapses between switching from one to the other may be only milliseconds. So, in effect, you do use most of your brain, most of the time. The above "norm" brain may lessen the time to nanoseconds.

About how exactly "predictive thoughts" lead to insanity is not that it leads to, they are traits of those labeled insane, as far as analytical thought I don't believe that was suggested although that does have influence on how individuals determine their future. Unrealistic expectations are defiantly one the most stressful components injected into the mind of a genius, as they expect others to understand everything they say and when its not it frustrates them beyond the norm. So I do believe due to that cause and effect it is intrinsic to not only the genius but others as well.

Your being clear on the cave was clear, the Plato's Allegory of the Cave was to just better inform the readers on your theses, well done. However you concluded (anything involving brain damage obviously requires a physical solution, but "most" of those can't be considered geniuses.) while infact "most" involving brain damage were geniuses. Examples:

Leonardo DaVinci: was a great painter, designer, scientist, futurist and thinker. He also had the gift of dyslexia.
One remarkable indication that Leonardo was dyslexic is in his handwriting. Leonardo was constantly sketching out his ideas for inventions. Most of the time, he wrote his notes backwards. Why did Leonardo write from right-to-left, in mirror image? Although unusual, this is a trait shared by many left-handed dyslexic people. Most of the time, dyslexic writers are not even consciously aware that they are writing this way.Leonardo's spelling is also considered erratic and quite strange. He also started many more projects then he ever finished - a characteristic now often considered to be 'A.D.D.'
However, when it came to drawing illustrations, Leonardo's work is detailed and precise. His extraordinary artwork and inovation are proof that he truly possessed the gift of dyslexia

Socrates: "To the exhaustion and excessive concentration of sensibility must be attributed all this strange acts showin apparent or intermittent aneasthesia and analgesia, which are to be found among men of genius as well as among the insane. Socrates presented a photo-paraesthesia which enabled him to gaze at the sun for considerable time without experiencing any discmonfort. Socrates also often danced and jumped in the street without reason, as if a freak.

Van Gogh: became mentally ill at 35 years old, and it was at this time that he created his most famous paintings. Some scientists believe that he was suffering from lead poisoning because in all of his paintings, Van Gogh shows rings around any light sources, and seeing rings around light was a very common symptom of lead poisoning. Van Gogh's insanity became gradually worse. He started mutilating himself out of frustration, and at one point cut off his own ear. Convinced that he was not getting any better, Van Gogh took his own life at age thirty-seven, ending his talent and silencing his emotional pain forever.

Poe's problems were medical as well as emotional and perhaps even psychological. In the first place, Poe was believed to be clinically depressed, even a bit insane. The depression and madness Poe experienced was thought to be the cause of his addiction to alcohol and drugs. Another reason Poe was an alcoholic could be that his nervous system was weakened as a result of a brain lesion and ongoing heart troubles, causing a severe intolerance of alcohol and addiction to soothing drugs. Finally, and perhaps the most obvious cause of death, was the actual finding of a brain lesion in Poe's autopsy, which could have been the cause of Poe's insanity, depression, and many of the other illnesses Poe reported.

Ever since Adolf Hitler's appearance in the international community as the leader of the National Socialist German Workers. party (later to become the Nazi Party) in 1926, conclusions have been drawn as to the state of his mind. Accused of being a psychopath by numerous authors, he is also renowned for his genius. Leading a beaten country on a quest for recognition, he demonstrated his military as well as political genius to a world that, through its oppression of the German people, helped create him. He would ultimately go down in history defined as both a genius, and a psychopath.

The list goes on,so my conclusions are still most geniuses are very vulnerable and susceptible to madness.

Consider the similarities between geniuses and the insane: Characteristics of neurosis in dubbed degenerating "geniuses": according to Cesare Lambroso (author of The Man of Genius,Walter Scott Pub.Co.Ltd.,London)Pallor (paleness of the skin), Emaciation (thin body), Lesions of the cranium, Stammering (incontrollable pauses in speech),Left-handedness,Sterility,Precocity, Misoneism(fear of change),Vagabondage(wondering),Somnambulism, Double Personality,Hyper-aesthesia, Amnesia, Dyslexia,Fondness for special words, Chorea and Epilepsy, Melancholy(monomania),Megalomania,Alcoholism, Hallucinations, Paranoia,Delirium,Moral Insanity,Longevity,Suicide.

My last comment about the stick(in round two)was only meant to say I'm appreciative to be able to converse without name calling,mud slinging antics etc. have a blessed day :o)
Ragnar_Rahl

Con

So it appears we agree that the brain is roughly at optimal performance? And also on the question of free will it would seem, though perhaps for different reasons (I do not know precisely where you get this idea that "science promotes determinism", unless you mean weak determinism- i.e. influence compatible with free will.) Nevertheless, it is entirely possible to influence the mind of another person (we are both at the moment influencing what the other is thinking about, otherwise we would be debating completely different subjects), and I would disagree about the mind-body dichotomy (lesions to the brain and their effects are essentially the data I rely upon to demonstrate the brain is the source of thought.)

Regarding Da Vinci's dyslexia- do you consider dyslexia to be insanity? I wouldn't. The same with Socrates' dancing, staring at the sun, and indifference to pain. The rest might count, but anecdotal evidence does not demonstrate that geniuses exhibit these characteristics more often than everyone else, nor that the insane demonstrate genius more often than everyone else.

And of course just because brain damages accompany insanity do not necessarily mean they caused it- it could be that outside influences lead the brain to process things in such a way that it begins to become damaged. For example, if you are anxious you lose sleep, and sleep is needed regularly to repair the brain and other body parts.

And ah, now I see the stick :D

*whacks hitler over the head with a stick anyway, just because he was brought up and deserves it.
Debate Round No. 3
easy2know

Pro

If in your agreement that the brain is "you do use most of your brain, most of the time"..that our brains (normal) are roughly at optimal performance, then yes we are in agreement. As in my belief of predestination being a weak excuse for free will, is just that, as you say you feel we are both at the moment influencing what the other is thinking about, on the contrary my thoughts are not necessarily influenced by yours (free will) as I'm not a vulcan and cannot mind meld, okay so a vulcan is not the best example..lol The point is science tries to theorize free will as predictable or influencing something that follows as a result or consequence, many use this approach to predict or force their will on others. You do believe freedom of humans to make choices that are not determined by prior causes or by divine intervention...? Because we are staying on subject is we seem to be seeking some answers to the seriousness of the subject, which in turn keeps our direction a learning experience. You wrote (and I would disagree about the mind-body dichotomy (lesions to the brain and their effects are essentially the data I rely upon to demonstrate the brain is the source of thought.)???? As I know of the many organs and their basic functions, the division of the brain as to other critical organs is quite evident, and of course the brain is the source of thought, (all though some do think with their sexual organs)... however moving along, naturally the function of the brain can be influenced how the brain operates when some organs are removed or damaged.

As far as labeling Da Vinci's dyslexia as insane was not the intent, it however is a severe disability that is related to the or can lead to the manifestation or process of becoming insane. On Socrates, may I ask you what part of inflicting pain, or dancing and jumping in the street without reason, as if a freak, shows anyone any signs of normalcy's..? Wouldn't that be an indication of a Abby Normal brain..? While you feel the evidence is unscientific, many base the outcome of the whys that some geniuses go insane.. by the conclusions of decades of reports or observations. Sometimes the most common sense reasons should be applied. So indeed I do believe anecdotal evidence does demonstrate that geniuses exhibit these characteristics more often than everyone else.

Your last statement...(just because brain damages accompany insanity do not necessarily mean they caused it etc)...I'm in total agreement with..! Only one thing if an organ is missing or not repairable, and of course sleep will not help, the results could be catastrophic. Today's new methods of reading and measuring brain waves etc are very promising, my hopes and I'm sure yours are that we can learn and prevent the many possible malfunctions of the human brain.

I'm sorry but my feelings are still are most genius's or those with high IQ's think on a different scale than the average person, and seem a bit insane. They make themselves that way, through over-analyzing, internalizing everything, predictive thought patterns, unrealistic expectations of society and the people around them, and an array of other self-defeating, self-destructive thought patterns. But please keep on talking..I'm listening..lol..jk..I'm no frasier, or any type of psychiatrist...in all honesty you have opened my eyes to many other concrete views..ty..:o)
Ragnar_Rahl

Con

I did not say my mind was directly influencing your mind (although "mirror cell" theories might, I'd need to see more evidence and you aren't in the same room so it's kind of hard :D.) Nevertheless my actions of debating you are it would appear.

Science does not "try to theorize free will as predictable." Some scientists might (B.F. Skinner is a well-known example), science itself is not so specifically teleological a process. What science does is simply try to predict what will happen and base whether something is predictable on whether they manage to predict it. So far they haven't had much success. But yes, I believe humans can make choices: They cannot choose the situation beforehand which determines what choices face them, but they can, when faced with a given situation, choose to act in one of a few manners that make sense or one of the many that don't. How predictable behavior is will depend on the situation and how rational people are. The most compelling evidence against determinism is that suicide exists- Any purely deterministic universe would have long since selected away from suicide, per natural selection.

Of course, again, it depends on how insane we are talking here. Anecdotal evidence is insufficient, but statistically speaking, there is no real difference in how schizophrenia (about as insane as it gets) affects more intelligent people, and a huge difference in how bipolar disorder affects them (at least if genius is considered roughly equivalent to creativity). Not the sort of difference one would expect for causation, but a very strong correlation, although not with the greatest rigor in the studies. See http://www.patienthealthinternational.com....
Bipolar disorder, being in essence the quick switch between extreme moods with no apparent reason, makes a lot of sense when put together with a theory of cognitive dissonance based on outside treatment (i.e. the one I postulated in my first argument).

Sleep won't help serious damage, but it repairs small things if caught quickly (not precisely broken neurons, but worn out neurons that could potentially become damaged).

Feelings are annoying things sometimes aren't they? ^_^
Debate Round No. 4
easy2know

Pro

Yes your actions are influencing me, and it is a positive learning experience which gives incentive to continue with vigor and the anticipation of learning more.

Their are many, many, others who theorize free will is predictable. Scientists are those who investigate or gain knowledge through a system of knowledge covering general truths or the operation of general laws, so society in general believes there findings. So like B.F. Skinner and many others like Friedrich Nietzsche, he wrote: The error of a false casualty." ... "There are no mental causes at all." ... the folly of the causal relationship between motives effecting will, leading to actions. According to Nietzsche, traditional understanding of will, motives, ego, the "inner world" are false, simply a tool to foster "responsibility" for one's actions.
>>"free will" was only invented by the priests in order to create guilt; it is not real. "Men were considered `free' so that they might be judged and punished—so that they might become guilty: consequently every act had to be considered as willed…" ... guilt and morality to be harmful social constructs created by the priests, and in rejecting their conception of freedom, he also rejects their conception of good, evil, and guilt. And just to add this is how his life ended-Nietzsche began his career as a philologist before turning to philosophy. At the age of 24 he became Professor of Classical Philology at the University of Basel, but resigned in 1879 due to health problems, which would plague him for most of his life. In 1889 he exhibited symptoms of a serious mental illness, living out his remaining years in the care of his mother and sister until his death in 1900.

Your explanation and reference of the huge difference in how bipolar disorder affects them was a very special and a interesting read, especially the last part ( Society versus the individual.... Even if a link between bipolar disorder and creativity is proven, it may be relevant in only a minority of individuals. Some fear that romanticising such a serious medical condition is dangerous, placing a burden on sufferers to be creative or even to refuse treatment. So, although society as a whole benefits from its so-called "mad geniuses", this must be balanced against the cost to the individual – at least one in five sufferers attempt suicide. Bipolar disorder is now a treatable condition and most patients report that their quality of life improves after starting medication.) it shows how the many lesser known geniuses or high IQ people are not being measured. In your final remark (being in essence the quick switch between extreme moods with no apparent reason, makes a lot of sense when put together with a theory of cognitive dissonance based on outside treatment (i.e. the one I postulated in my first argument). As I stated in round two it was outstanding and made a point we should be all more aware of the treatment of others who may be experiencing these traumatic symptoms, same goes for all the young people that go crazy (like the many columbines) when others needlessly pick on others because of some silly differences. In conclusion I will post this story because it so well fits our discussion on how many geniuses commit suicide, my hopes and prayers are that we have some how shed some light on this subject..ty..Ragnar..:o)

One day, when I was a freshman in high school, I saw a kid from my class was walking home from school. His name was Kyle. It looked like he was carrying all of his books. I thought to myself, "Why would anyone bring home all his books on a Friday? He must really be a nerd." I had quite a weekend planned (parties and a football game with my friends tomorrow afternoon), so I shrugged my shoulders and went on. As I was walking, I saw a bunch of kids running toward him. They ran at him, knocking all his books out of his arms and tripping him so he landed in the dirt. His glasses went flying, and I saw them land in the grass about ten feet from him. He looked up and I saw this terrible sadness in his eyes My heart went out to him. So, I jogged over to him as he crawled around looking for his glasses, and I saw a tear in his eye. As I handed him his glasses, I said, "Those guys are jerks. " They really should get lives. "He looked at me and said, "Hey thanks!" There was a big smile on his face. It was one of those smiles that showed real gratitude. I helped him pick up his books, and asked him where he lived. As it turned out, he lived near me, so I asked him why I had never seen him before. He said he had gone to private school before now. I would have never hung out with a private school kid before. We talked all the way home, and I carried some of his books. He turned out to be a pretty cool kid. I asked him if he wanted to play a little football with my friends He said yes. We hung out all weekend and the more I got to know Kyle, the more I liked him, and my friends thought the same of him. Monday morning came, and there was Kyle with the huge stack of books again. I stopped him and said, "Boy, you are gonna really build some serious muscles with this pile of books everyday! " He just laughed and handed me half the books. Over the next four years, Kyle and I became best friends. When we were seniors we began to think about college. Kyle decided on Georgetown and I was going to Duke. I knew that we would always be friends, that the miles would never be a problem. He was going to be a doctor and I was going for business on a football scholarship. Kyle was valedictorian of our class. I teased him all the time about being a nerd. He had to prepare a speech for graduation. I was so glad it wasn't me having to get up there and speak.

Graduation day, I saw Kyle. He looked great. He was one of those guys that really found himself during high school. He filled out and actually looked good in glasses. He had more dates than I had and all the girls loved him. Boy, sometimes I was jealous! Today was one of those days. I could see that he was nervous about his speech. So, I smacked him on the back and said, "Hey, big guy, you'll be great!" He looked at me with one of those looks (the really grateful one) and smiled. "Thanks," he said. As he started his speech, he cleared his throat, and began "Graduation is a time to thank those who helped you make it through those tough years. Your parents, your teachers, your siblings, maybe a coach...but mostly your friends... I am here to tell all of you that being a friend to someone is the best gift you can give them. I am going to tell you a story." I just looked at my friend with disbelief as he told the story of the first day we met. He had planned to kill himself over the weekend. He talked of how he had cleaned out his locker so his Mom wouldn't have to do it later and was carrying his stuff home. He looked hard at me and gave me a little smile. "Thankfully, I was saved. My friend saved me from doing the unspeakable."I heard the gasp go through the crowd as this handsome, popular boy told us all about his weakest moment. I saw his Mom and dad looking at me and smiling that same grateful smile. Not until that moment did I realize it's depth. Never underestimate the power of your actions. With one small gesture you can change a person's life. For better or for worse.

This story was only to open some "eyes" on how in today's times suicide is at a alarming rate amongst our youth, and that we all must teach our young they are needed, loved, like our own life depends on it, (and it does) even good old Abe knew... www.icr.org/article/690/

So my friend Ragnar, feelings are not really annoying at all, in fact it is an emotion we all need to work at..thank-you for this debate..:o)
Ragnar_Rahl

Con

I'm afraid I'd have to disagree on whether Nietzsche is a scientist. Scientists are those using the scientific method to investigate questions of particulars. Universals are the domain of philosophy, not science. Indeed, since the scientific method is fundamentally one based on logic (the inductive half of it), Nietzsche could never have been a scientist, because he rejected logic and rationality "In all things one thing is impossible- rationality!"

On second thought now that I remember B.F. Skinner didn't theorize "free will as predictable," he tried to do away with the notion of free will.

The bipolar disorder treatment question isn't about society versus the individual, it's about the individual valuing the highs versus the individual valuing not getting the lows. Robin Williams, for example, chose not to cease treatment of his bipolar disorder, not out of some duty to "society," but because the medication interfered with his acting. He makes a lot of money off his acting.

I can agree with your hopes but not your prayers, for reasons I'm sure you will understand ^_^.

Your anecdote was interesting, but has no bearing on whether feelings are sometimes annoying (note I did not say all the time). Feelings are also not "an" emotion, they are a synonym for all emotions. Seems to me like Abe is warning about allowing emotions to affect judgment too much, not too little.

We seem to have changed the course a little here eh? :D

Now that we're in the habit of providing links anecdotes however, I direct you to: http://www.capmag.com... to find a short story that serves as a perfect example of an intelligent person being driven insane by the contradictions between the products of his reasoning mind and the irrational demands of those around him on his life. Be warned, however, because the guilty party is only guilty of acting consistently on the doctrines that many reading this have been taught from childhood.
Debate Round No. 5
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by person_16 9 years ago
person_16
I thought my "insanely intellectual" comment would be rather appropriate, if not "punny", for this particular debate.

Not that I have to tell anyone this, but it was kind of a play on words...considering the topic of this debate and what not.

Thank you Ragnar and easy2know for boosting my self esteem. ^_^
Posted by erick1 9 years ago
erick1
This debate here should be commended on the tone you both extended, period. Thank-you Erick.

I'm in agreement with Easy because he gave sufficient evidence that 'many' genesis's ( as sad as it is ) end up with mental disorders leading to suicide.

Albert Einstein:
Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 9 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
Allow yourself to feel stupid under no circumstances 16. This debate might be over on rounds but is not conclusive, and if its results should turn out to be wrong a failure to heed my words (in favor of whoever's premises lead you to that feeling) will likely drive you insane. Whereas if easy2know is right you lose zero from listening to me. The result regarding your actions, therefore, is obvious :D.
Posted by easy2know 9 years ago
easy2know
Person 16, I resemble that remark..jk..lol..unless you meant I was the insane one, and Ragnar was the intellectual..? Again just kidding and want to thank-you and Chad for your kind words. And Person 16 my granddaughter is 16 and has been asking me what courses she should start with at college, telling her one of the must do is to study the science of the mind and its behavior...so if your serious about psychology..you go girl..!! :o)
Posted by person_16 9 years ago
person_16
Oh my God! This debate is "insanely intellectual!"

Almost makes me feel stupid...and I want to take psychology when I get to college...
Posted by buletman 9 years ago
buletman
Extremely well articulated and intriguing debate.

Thank you both for your formulated ideas.

Chad
Posted by PreacherFred 9 years ago
PreacherFred
I would like to commend the both of you for an excellent debate. It was truly educational. However, I believe that Easy2Know won this one.

Many geniuses were partially insane, if not wholly insane; many geniuses lived on the borderline between sanity and insanity. Schopenhauer is an example of a genius who was partially insane. Schopenhauer had many irrational fears and anxieties; fearing that people would misinterpret a trance as death and bury him alive, Schopenhauer "stipulated that his remains be left unburied beyond the usual time." Cézanne is another example of a genius who was partially insane. Cézanne experienced "chronic paranoia"; when his friends threw a party to celebrate his birthday, he left abruptly, thinking they were making fun of him.

It is an indication of the genius' partial insanity that he goes to extremes and is one-sided. The genius lacks moderation. Dostoyevsky, for example, said, "I go to the ultimate limit everywhere and in everything; all my life long I have always approached the limit!"9

A second indication of the genius' partial insanity is that he's moody, more so than most people are. Genius often oscillates between elation and depression. Kierkegaard is an example of a moody genius. Kierkegaard's mental state was described as "depression, alternating with, but more commonly blended with, a condition of exaltation." Strindberg was also moody; "throughout [Strindberg's] life," wrote one of his biographers, "his moods varied from elation to the blackest depression." The moodiness of genius tends to take the form of depression rather than elation; genius is melancholy. Kafka is an example of a melancholy genius: "every day," said Kafka, "I wish myself off the earth."10
Posted by easy2know 9 years ago
easy2know
Ragnar first again ty for the debate, and you may disagree Nietzsche wasn't a man of science, your entitled to your opinion, however my point was two fold, #1 Nietzsche was considered a genius (subject related) and what lead to his demise was mental illness. #2 (and you must know you instigated the free will issue when you stated (it is entirely possible to influence the mind of another person (we are both at the moment influencing what the other is thinking about) Now I know in round 2 my statement was (Science promotes the premise for the lie that there is no free will.) point being you may be influencing me but I have the "free" will to draw my own conclusions as to accept or decline your theories. This all in turn is why I eluded to science promotes the premise for the"lie that there is no" free will. You basically just verified what I have been saying.

Understanding your rejection of my prayers is noted, my guess would be most all fear the things we don't understand. It seems quite ironic how science can be proved wrong over time, yet religious beliefs have stood the trials and tribulations through out all time..! If this subject is what you eluded to as far as changing course, maybe, just maybe, it could bring some answers to the fate of the so many who use the worldly things as their only guide to life, and for reasons I'm sure you will understand, may you have a long and prosperous journey...:o)
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 9 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
Because I'm being addressed on something completely off topic:

I do not support social programs, and my support of school vouchers is not unconditional. They are not "absolutely the same" as a "social program" because the goal is the phased-out elimination of social programs. A school voucher, fundamentally, means that the party paying for their children to go to a private school should not also pay for public schools. It is a form of reparation for the robbery that has so long supported the "public school system." It does not take money from takes payers, it prevents money from being taxed. The ultimate end of an effective school voucher program is to dilute the effective monopoly of the state on education, to the point where enough private schools exist to allow the elimination of the public school system without a drastic market readjustment. Once that is achieved, the idea of a "school voucher" will of course be meaningless.

I would challenge you to a debate about this, mr_newjazz, but your account appears to be closed for some reason.
Posted by mr_newjazz 9 years ago
mr_newjazz
Hello folks,

I think I can provide some excellent insight into this debate. I am a genius who almost went insane. For this note, I define insanity as killing oneself.

Nice debate so far. easy2know has been running off the track a little (dualism, free will)...but who cares?

Ragnar, how can you oppose Social Programs and yet support School Vouchers? Supporting School Vouchers is absolutely the same as supporting a Social Program.

I will write back again soon about my genius/insanity borderline condition.

ps. yup, Im a newbie
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