“It all began in the early 1920s in Vienna. Wilhelm Reich was not only a young student of Freud’s… But the father of psychoanalysis himself called him: ‘Der beste Kopfe.’ “The Best Mind in Psychoanalysis.” His ideas were so brilliant that already at the age of 22 – well before finishing his studies – Freud introduced him to work as a Psychoanalyst.”
This pops up in my FB-feed (an ad for something called “Metameric massage”). I don’t know much about Wilhelm Reich, hardly anything at all, other than that he somehow derailed later in in his career.
But It gets me starting to think about genius and madness. I recently got reminded of another of those freethinking pioneers, R. D. Laing, who also derailed, disappeared, and whose work has long been in the psychiatric-therapeutic freezer. But is being taught again today.
Yes, Madness and Genius, how they are connected. I think something that many of the pioneers, the founders of different schools, etc, in the world of psychology (I limit my thoughts to that) had in common, is that they somehow have been troubled souls. “Cross-border.” But what’s underneath this? What does their desire to transcend boundaries come of?
I often think it must have had something to do with their early upbringing. A sort of imbalance, actually. How they have had it with mom and dad (or equivalent), simply put. Reasonably harmonious individuals, who have found their (psychologically) place in the world rarely have what it takes. They rarely have that itch to make revenge or make their mark on the world, to rebel against establishments & authorities. They seldom have this deep experience that you have something unique to come up with, something that you obviously need to manifest.
So, that it’s really a defect or wound, a developmental psychological flaw in them, that drives them… They can achieve great things, find truths, make important contributions. But basically or in some respects, at least in the beginning, they often are “sicker” than average.