Jeanette Winterson, author, playwright, on how hearing voices can be a good thing, and on how madness is not the end but the start of a healing process.
And if, because of that, you want to put her in the crazy category – well how do you like them oranges?
This passage is from her book…
Why be Happy When you can be Normal
“I often hear voices. I realize that drops me in the crazy category but I don’t much care. If you believe, as I do, that the mind wants to heal itself, and that the psyche seeks coherence not disintegration, then it isn’t hard to conclude that the mind will manifest whatever is necessary to work on the job.
We now assume that people who hear voices do terrible things; murderers and psychopaths hear voices, and so do religious fanatics and suicide bombers. But in the past, voices were respectable, desired. The visionary and the prophet, the shaman and the wise-woman. And the poet, obviously.
Hearing voices can be a good thing.
Going mad is the beginning of a process. It is not supposed to be the end result.
Video of Jeanette Winterson in interview talk ing about the book, including the story behind the title.