We cannot believe falsehoods in quite the same way as truths. Unless one is clinically insane, one cannot lie to oneself with absolute conviction: reality asserts a residue of doubt, and so one is afraid to put one’s daydreams to the test.
Thus writes Stephen Vizinczey in The Rules of Chaos, published in 1969.
I beg to differ.
The decades since Vizinczey penned the passage above have proven that delusions do not breed cowardice; on the contrary, they breed hubris, pride, vanity, conceit, and pomposity.
Delusions also attract money – truckloads of it – and fame, popularity, prestige, rank, and power.
Delusions are not only rewarded but held in high regard. They are admired, studied, respected, esteemed, and exalted.
Delusions also offer safety, security, solidness, and soundness.
Our modern milieu has revealed that people are extremely adept at believing falsehoods and virtually incapable of seeing truth – even obvious, mundane ones.
They seem perfectly adept at lying to themselves with absolute conviction. Most lie to themselves with absolute conviction several hundred times daily, leaving no space for doubt residues. Modern people are more than happy to put their daydreams to the test – at least the daydreams the System promotes.
Does this mean that modern people are clinically insane?
If by clinically insane we mean “mental illness of such a severe nature that a person cannot distinguish fantasy from reality, cannot conduct her/his affairs due to psychosis, or is subject to uncontrollable impulsive behavior,” then yeah, I guess most modern people are clinically insane.
So what now, Mr. Vizinczey? Wait for reality to reassert itself through chance, randomness, and chaos?