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Living with Schizoaffective Disorder

The Convenient Hallucination

"This is very disconcerting, Mike. The members of the betting pool
have not discussed whether trying to admit yourself and failing
counts as an event to strigger payout."

Jonathan Swift


Friday, April 23, 2010

I'll explain shortly why that's important.

There is a certain Reality that the psychotic can see but the sane cannot. I have discussed this with several doctors who all agreed that for me to see this Reality is no manner of delusion or hallucination - but simply to be able to see it is an unmistakeable symptom of psychosis.

I don't know what the symptom is properly called by the psychiatric community; for now, I will call it "Sub-Channel Communication". When two people interact in any way - not just myself and another, but two others within my view - I, when psychotic, am able to see as plain as the nose on my face, a form of subconscious, subliminal communication that is normally - and properly - hidden from the Sane.

In April 1994, I could see Social Transactions as they are described in the classic 1965 text Games People Play by Psychiatrist Eric Berne M.D. On another occasion, I could see Carl Jung's Archetypes - that is, Universal Metaphors from what Jung described as the Collective Unconscious. It got so bad that I was drowning in the fucking things; no one could even be in my presence, let alone speak, without my vivid, overpowering awareness of the subconscious significance of their actions.

I will explain why the lot of you need to be beaten with a cluebat.

That my doctors agree these are real, not delusion, is because the sane can learn to sense them with the right kind of training. That's part of what one learns when studying to be a psychotherapist.

For the sane not to see them is what I call "The Convenient Hallucination". If sane folk were all to start seeing Reality in this way, Civilization would collapse overnight; our cities would erupt in flames with angry mobs murdering everyone in sight.

As for that cluebat I spoke of...

A while back I was working on Revelation, which falls towards the end of The Enemy Within, the second of my Two Essays for All Humanity, when I realized I had a problem. Straight away, I worked towards its solution only to realize that I would not solve this problem without help.

At the time I was writing my story at the Starbucks on El Camino just off Lawrence in Mountain View, California. Upon realizing I needed help I stopped what I was doing and sat quietly, not even moving, for an entire hour as I contemplated who could best help me solve this problem.

At the end of that hour I packed up my computer then drove to Palo Alto to check in to the Emergency Room at Stanford Medical Center. I said to the triage nurse, "This is going to sound really weird. Please understand that I am mentally ill; it's my job to be weird."

(I've said that before; all concerned regard it as helpful.)

I said, "I'm writing a story. I have come here because I find myself not writing my story from the outside by typing it into my computer, but from the inside by experiencing it as objective reality."

"But that's not my problem; were that all there is I could solve my problem on my own."

"While a work of fiction it is presented as a memoire. Lucifer sends the ghost of the Roman poet Virgil to request my presence in Hell. The Heavenly Father has written a computer program of such intractible complexity that even He can't debug it. Lucifer hopes that my unique insight into the nature of software faults might help resolve the problem."

"My problem is that rather than entering my story as my fictional self, I am experiencing - as objective reality - that I have become the first engineer who was assigned the bug, but who failed because so many failed to heed His message."

"I have come to admit myself to your psychiatric inpatient unit because I need you to convince me that I am not The Second Coming of Jesus Christ."

It was right around then that I started getting clobbered by all those damn Archetypes.

Imagine my Horror upon reading the newspaper after but one night's sleep only to find that Easter just a few days away.

While it was definitely Holy Week my hazy memory doesn't recall the exact night. But I realize the pool needs the exact date; I'll do my best to come up with that for you later.

I chose Stanford over the much closer Mission Oaks for two reasons: they have a twenty-four hour psychiatrist in the Emergency Room and patients are allowed to bring and to use laptop computers. They even provide free wireless.

I was hesitant to tell my doctors at first but they agreed it was the right thing when I finally did so:

I knew that no amount of medicine or psychotherapy was going to get me out of my story. What would set me free was to continue writing it.

In Revelation, I write of the Eternal, Universal War between Good and Evil and of how the only hope of Peace - not victory, but Peace - was to somehow obtain and to drink of that very precious Wine that is found in The Holy Grail.

But that very precious Wine is composed not of fermented grapes nor of The Blood of the Lamb; no, that very precious Wine is composed of Insight:

While the transformation between Universal War and Eternal Peace will take but seconds the negotiations over the terms of the treaty will be so intractably complex as to be completely beyond the ability of even God Almighty Himself to negotiate. Therefore a disarmament specialist will be brought in, a certain well-known Indian prince whose education and training in conflict resolution took much the same route as my own education and training in software engineering.

Perhaps you have heard of him: His name is Siddhartha Gautama. But His real name is largely unknown among those who don't practice Gautama's trade themselves. After His Graduation and upon completion of Basic Training Siddhartha was given what most regard as a name but is in reality his job title: Buddha.


Because its message is so powerfully compressed and so deeply encrypted, The Holy Grail contains but one bit of Information; that Information is known as Insight. Insight is the Killer App not only of the entire Universe but of all Eternity as well. Find some way to ship that product then within nanoseconds of your Insight App hitting the App Store even Bill Gates would find himself unqualified to tie your shoes.

It was upon writing this last bit that I Just Stopped then sat for an hour there in Starbucks, unmoving, until I made the drive to the Stanford Medical Center H2 Psychiatric Inpatient Unit.

You see, I had the sense - the overpowering sense - that were I to complete writing my book, would be to complete The Purpose for which the Universe was created: simply to serve as a battlefield for the Eternal War between Good and Evil. It would be to complete The Purpose for which you and I were created: to serve but as Fodder for that War's Cannons.

I had the overpowering sense that upon completion of my book I myself would Drink of The Cup. Those intractibly complex armistice negotations would then take place, the opposing armies would rise from their trenches to greet what were at one time their most sworn and bitter enemies as brothers and sisters...

... and the entire Universe, and all of Us with It, would all...

... cease to exist.

I did not want that to happen. Not on my account anyway.

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