Sanity is overrated. To really be able to understand that, you probably have to experience insanity as well - this needn’t necessarily lead to a trip to the nearest mental hospital, or to the nearest prison or even to your own distorted porridge contraption as in my case. And it is not that uncommon. I feel like anyone who has entered into their adult life and still breathing certainly might have experienced a loss of grip on sanity at some point, at least for a very brief time. Comparing the two, I don’t think the distinction is that pronounced to categorize people purely based on that criterion. For the unlucky few, who haven’t had the good fortune of experiencing insanity in their life, here is what it feels like to take a plunge from the cliff of sanity, down to the depths of the unknown.
Sanity dictates that the world around you is true and real, even when it is not. By the way, sanity isn’t always the right one among the two. And that certainly is not the definition of sanity. It is rather an illusion- an illusion that has ensured the survival of our specie for thousands of years. Insanity, on the other hand, rids you of this illusion and lets you see the world through your own eyes without the lens of sanity designed by the society. The visuals may not be colourful or even tolerable at times, can even be mundane or painful- but you know that is how your soul sees the world, and you can find solace in that realization.
The transition is the most fun part. You are neither here nor there. You are both sane and insane. You are confused whether you are yourself or possessed. You feel like you are in a glitch. You feel detached from everything around you - you try to make sense of the things, but fails miserably. You find yourself stuck in the gray area, where nothing is black or white any more. We believe that black is the only colour that blinds us. But that is far from the truth. The colour doesn’t really matter- whether it’d be black or white, or blue, red, or yellow. It is the pervasiveness, the mind-numbing uniformity, monotony that incapacitates us, our ability to see. When everything is painted grey, pure grey, perfected into a monochromatic montage - what else can we see other than the colour alone?
After a while, you accept it. You accept your inevitable fall into insanity. You embrace it and thus begins ‘the descend’. It is like you were high on life before, and you are getting sober, although the reverse is the more popular metaphor. You start to feel things you haven’t felt before, but things you know that were already there before - things chained deep inside but liberated now, free to roam around your deserted mind. You somehow feel free now, having stopped exerting half the energy you acquire to keep half of yourself in shackles. You either think; why was it chained in the first place, or why would it ever be restrained again. Your response to that thought determines how you perceive the world tomorrow, as well as how the world perceives you.
Sanity and insanity is not that very different from the perspective of a single identity. It is a relative term; it derives definition from the world around us. Someone branded as insane here could very well be the sanest person in some other part of the world, and vice versa. You can choose to be either sane or insane, or anything in between. But it is unfortunate that more often than not, that decision is made by the society we live in, and we don’t get a say in it.