There is a conundrum with which we are daily faced.
For some its solution dominates their thoughts;
for others the enigma is too challenging (or frightening)
and it is left alone;
still others choose to remain oblivious to its demands.
Yet addressed it must be (it is demanded of us)--
this question that evolves out of the engine
that drives the mind. . .
through that mind's complexities and perplexities,
its agonies and ecstasies;
its labors and exertions,
it ploddings and workings;
its impenetrabilities and simplicities,
its epiphanies and inscrutabilities;
its perceptions and deceptions,
its elucidations and frustrations;
ah, and even its integrations and disintegrations--
at the least a bewilderment, a confounding, an obfuscation
that suggest infinite human riddles
that somehow must be solved.
After all, is not Life, if nothing else, a matter of choices?
dilemmas and options,
problems and preferences,
queries and inquiries,
challenges and doubts
answers and solutions,
interpretations and perceptions,
explanations and analyses,
responses and disclosures.
Yet hidden down, down, very far down
within the cerebrum and the cerebellum
is found so much more to ponder, reflect, and consider
with so much less to help us explain, decode, and decipher
all that emerges out of the explosive recesses
of those undulating, gray, volcanic canyons
that erupt onto a distant world.
Some would insist that those who dig deeper than most of us do
(beneath the jagged underpinnings
of the hoary, frostlike glaciers of genius)
are the truly intelligent.
Yet even those same minions of the -ology of the psyche
seem so contrary, so contradictory, so disputatious
as they so stubbornly adhere
to their remarkably unproven and considerably contentious postulations:
that those who otherwise could be, might be, should be marked
"little lower than the angels"
(whose proclivities of speech and action seem
not to resemble the paths that others take)
are, instead, proscribed and deemed to be
abnormal, confused, and anomalous;
dangerous, threatening, and unconventional
fanciers of fantasies.
Perhaps, however, those martyred from condescension and dismissal
are not only not ordinary but, in fact, quite extraordinary!
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What, after all then, can separate our understanding of mental illness from
Are there not some special and exceptional (or exceptionally special)
people who delve quite differently into magical, mental chasms?
In fact, there are those whose brilliance conforms to expectation,
who develop, discover, and enhance in a way that
is acceptable and seemingly redemptive according
to those not quite so blessed,
but with ease and facility
disgorge such painful, hurtful, angry words as
"uniformity, homogeneity, monotony;
similitude, semblance, resemblance;
conform, conformed, conforming, conformity."
Yet what of those, who by choice or design, plumb even greater depths?
Of these, I am sure, there are at least two kinds:
--those who overwhelm themselves with discoveries
so unexpected and unfathomable that
they cannot and will not comprehend them,
do not know what to do with them,
consider them as enemies.
These chosen, then, have no choice but to turn into themselves
(closing off the world),
or turn on themselves
(ridding the world of them),
or destroy the other-than-they selves
(preventing the unknowing and
uncomprehending from similar
self-revealed esoteric horrors)
--but, perhaps, there are also those whose gifts are so great,
whose minds are so superior to our pitifully limited comprehension,
with genius so beyond and above normal genius,
so discrete, so distinctive,
that we have no other word than "genius"
with which to label them.
If these people have a language of their own,
if they move to a different rhythm,
if they see what we cannot visualize
or hear what we cannot absorb through the ear,
if they perceive the world and its possibilities
from an entirely new, distinct, and unique perspective. . .
where is the harm? the injury? the damage?
By whose scales should we judge them?
Which blindfolded Lady will provide the balances?
And finally, are we justified to call these beings by any name less than sane?
How do we choose whom to caste out or whom to welcome?
Is it conceivable that we are the lesser human form
for using so little of our own possibilities
and that they, the greater, for utilizing more?
Have we come full circle, then,
to see the conundrum to be of our own invention?
Can it be so. . .the problem already solved
if we can but teach these mind travelers
how to adapt to our shallow world while we learn
how to meet the challenge of theirs!