Last night I watched Voices in my Head on Channel 4. Some 3-4% of any age group of any population hears voices in their heads. Amongst those interviewed was the novelist Hilary Mantel, who said the voices she hears when writing novels were what she imagined a religious experience to be like. So far, so good — creativity and this sort of insight go hand-in-hand.
We were presented with a banker who had enjoyed ‘a highly successful Wall Street career, thus ‘proving that even sane people can hear voices’. Whoa! Logic attack! I beg to differ, the ‘sane’ person who wrote the programme doesn’t seem to have a grasp of causality. Surely this proves the very opposite point: that people who hear voices can hold down high-pressure jobs on Wall Street. The programme’s flawed logic goes only to show that ‘sane’ people lack the insight to make basic logical deductions. Person-for-person it’s the sanity-challenged who’ve done most to drive human innovation.