Creative Minds ‘Mimic Schizophrenia’

Cloth Embroidered By A Schizophreniac

Photo: Embroidered Schizophrenia (CC)

Michelle Roberts reports for BBC News:

Creativity is akin to insanity, say scientists who have been studying how the mind works.

Brain scans reveal striking similarities in the thought pathways of highly creative people and those with schizophrenia. Both groups lack important receptors used to filter and direct thought.

It could be this uninhibited processing that allows creative people to “think outside the box”, say experts from Sweden’s Karolinska Institute.

In some people, it leads to mental illness. But rather than a clear division, experts suspect a continuum, with some people having psychotic traits but few negative symptoms.

Some of the world’s leading artists, writers and theorists have also had mental illnesses – the Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh and American mathematician John Nash (portrayed by Russell Crowe in the film A Beautiful Mind) to name just two.

Creativity is known to be associated with an increased risk of depression, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

Read More: BBC News

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  • Triangleye

    So I'm supposed to feel better now.

    • justagirl

      yes. every single one of you.

  • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/NWBGS6KE4GQSH3UBJU5DC4QRJY J

    Ok, it seems mostly scientific in it's presentation so I'll pretend to not be offended. Yet this connecting of creativity and schizophrenia is a little disturbing and perhaps at the very least should cast a different light on schizophrenia. Maybe psychiatrists ought to reconsider schizos….cause creativity is one of the things that makes being human so brilliant.

  • GoodDoktorBad

    To define the mind in such polar negative and positve terms like “mental illness” and “mental health” is frankly the logic of true madmen. Their is no template for mental health. These polar terms are actually a template for “how we think you should behave” to “fit in” to society. “Normal” really means conformity and in turn “health” means normal-ness. Order becomes a ball and chain that the wearer must pass around to distribute the weight of it, rather than remove the shackle and drop the ball. All the “normal” people pass the damn ball around, others stand by, watch and laugh…..
    Yes, there are actual diseases of the brain that can be observed, that cause “madness”, but for the sake of this discussion, I will exclude those.

    • Clinton

      The definition of what normal is today may seem insane to those who look back in to our present from the future.There are so many examples to illustrate this in society today, the need to label something that is evolving is a prime example, symptomatic of such justifications would be phrases like pre-emptive strike and colatoral damage. If this is the case are we not all by definition insane, for what greater fasehood than to perpetuate the belief that we are not many and simultaneously one.
      The following quote could best epitomises this:
      “Who are we pleasing…if not ourselves…which one will i please today…for i am many…and will i ever find the happiness that lies in perfection…i doubt perfection…for my most fortunate successes have always been mixed with sadness…i am a hundred souls…and they all whisper…when i think…”

  • Liquidself

    Schizpphrenia is the least well understood mental disorder. It is more of a grab bag of miscellaneous problems than a true diagnosis. So comparing creativity to schizophrenia is like saying the big bang is related to god. It doesnt clarify anything. I especially like the “continuum” hypothesis that relieves the researchers of the tedium of actually defining why creative health “types” might never exhibit full blown schizophrenia. All in all this research does nothing but reinforces existing stereotypes about schizophrenics and creativity.

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  • SE7EN_STAR

    creativity / genius / insanity
    •OR•
    rebellion / freewill / personal consciousness
    •OR•
    consciousness / energy / existence

    these are merely aspects of the All.

    and yes, that does mean God is crazy… crazy like a FOX

  • PussyGalore

    It’s all very simple to explain the only problem is the ones investigating are the “scientists” those that can’t speak in lay terminology i.e. 4th grade reading level that most the world seems to have. I’ve seen a lot of “abnormal” behavior difference is if it’s going to harm someone else or not! Suck your toes, pick your nose grab my tit without asking and you will be crying!

  • PussyGalore

    It's all very simple to explain the only problem is the ones investigating are the “scientists” those that can't speak in lay terminology i.e. 4th grade reading level that most the world seems to have. I've seen a lot of “abnormal” behavior difference is if it's going to harm someone else or not! Suck your toes, pick your nose grab my tit without asking and you will be crying!

  • Sammi_t4

    There’s some really interesting information on this site about the link between schizophrenia and creativity.

    http://www.suite101.com/content/the-unexpected-link-between-schizophrenia-and-creativity-a336538

  • Sammi_t4

    There’s some really interesting information on this site about the link between schizophrenia and creativity.

    http://www.suite101.com/content/the-unexpected-link-between-schizophrenia-and-creativity-a336538

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