“I am restless. “Do not ask me who I am and do not ask me to remain the same…Let us leave it to our bureaucrats and our police to see that our papers are in order”, reflects Foucault in The Archaeology of Knowledge. Indeed there are many ways to experiment, to create or to take care of oneself. What is crucial is to lift off the blinders of unconscious existence to see once again the newness of the world. I cannot wait to explore, since many great philosophers have left behind so many markers for one to drift further along one’s own chosen path. If being mad means holding on to one’s particularity, I would most gladly drown myself in melancholy. Since the beginning of the history of philosophy, many great artists and thinkers from Socrates to Althusser, have ended their lives in dramatic and tragic ways. Maybe the pain of being misunderstood was too hard to bear, maybe they were consumed by the silent insistent poison of loneliness, maybe their ideals have been overshadowed by the ugliness of reality, maybe giving up was the only way out of all that chaos. One can only speculate. But one thing I am sure of is that they have all loved life with a fierce passion. They have been so deliriously in love with life that in all desperation, they never ceased to question, to argue, to seek, to spread the word, to write the truth and to dream their vision of the perfect world. Imagine standing vis-à-vis with an unsympathetic and cruel crowd, who not listening, are ready to cast stones of condemnation even as you remain unwavering in your ideas, how deep the disappointment must be.
Yes indeed, unfortunately, like all love stories, expectations fail, promises are unfulfilled, and the vulnerable heart is broken. I remain pessimistic and I doubt that I will ever be truly satisfied with the conditions of life, but that does not mean I cannot love it. We must all be mad to embrace life and its sacrifices so intensely even though all knowledge is absurd anyway and one cannot access the perfect wisdom except through one’s madness. Yet, we love life for all the freedom it brings, despite its lack of meaning and purpose.
Because life simply is.
It is indeed sweet to be mad.”
– Sharon A.