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can you define insanity?

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posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 07:15 AM
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I watched a program last night on the biography channel called (i think)
conversations with killers, and a psychologist interviewed murderers pre-trail
to determine if the person was sane or insane to do what they did.

Obviously some were some weren't, But i was thinking, besides people who
work in the field when they have to kill someone; ie being in the army,
to actually take someones life dont you have to be insane to go through with it? At
any level?

Surely you've crossed that line of rational thinking, so you don't see the difference
between right and wrong.
Amazingly jeffery dharmer was deemed sane to do what he did, but hinkly who
tried to assassinate reagan was declared insane.
For me, pre meditated cold calculating killing is a sign of insanity, but in most cases
its not.

Are there degrees in insanity or is it straight down the line?




posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 11:41 AM
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I wouldn't say that a planned murder would classify as being insane. It's just a lack of good judgement. Just because you don't know right from wrong doesn't make you insane, it makes you ignorant. In most cases, when somebody has been killed, it's been over money, relationships, etc...They thought of ways to fix the problem, and the easiest and fastest, most permanent way has been killing. So I would have to say that I disagree.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 11:44 AM
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insanity is defined as performing the same action over and over expecting a different outcome.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 12:03 PM
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Originally posted by bokinsmowl
insanity is defined as performing the same action over and over expecting a different outcome.


So do u think dharmer was insane? he killed 17 men in the same way.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 12:09 PM
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Originally posted by CalmStateOfMind
...They thought of ways to fix the problem, and the easiest and fastest, most permanent way has been killing. So I would have to say that I disagree.


Isnt that a level of insanity? Taking someones life in today's society is the
ultimate taboo IMO.

And because they couldn't see past that way of thinking (to kill for what ever reason) to me they've lost the ability to think logically or keep sane.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 12:11 PM
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quote: Originally posted by bokinsmowl
insanity is defined as performing the same action over and over expecting a different outcome.


So do u think dharmer was insane? he killed 17 men in the same way.


i dont know, did he expect a different outcome the next 16 times?



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 12:14 PM
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Uh...it most definately is NOT the ultimate taboo considering we're killing each other every minute of every hour of every day.

I think if insanity as thinking illogically. In some cases, people are deemed insane just for thinking in a way frowned upon by society, but thats a bit different from killing someone and then wearing their face.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 12:22 PM
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Originally posted by thesneakiod
Are there degrees in insanity or is it straight down the line?


Many degrees. Just like there are many degrees of having a cold, or a broken leg. We're talking about illness here, for the most part.

Overall, however, society and consensus determine what is sane and what is insane.

Say you are haunted by bat monkey demons. Now, society has pretty much determined that there are no such things as bat monkey demons, and if you claim to be haunted by them, you're probably nuts. That being said, society doesn't know everything, and just because they've never been haunted by bat monkey demons, doesn't mean they can't exist. Maybe you have something in your brain that sees into other dimensions where bat monkey demons are common as weeds. So technically, you know the truth and reality of the situation. But it doesn't matter. To society, you're still nuts, and they'll give you all kinds of therapy and drugs and lock you up until you can convince them you no longer see the bat monkey demons. That's just the way things work in this world.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 12:54 PM
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Originally posted by Enkidu

Originally posted by thesneakiod
Are there degrees in insanity or is it straight down the line?


Many degrees. Just like there are many degrees of having a cold, or a broken leg. We're talking about illness here, for the most part.

Overall, however, society and consensus determine what is sane and what is insane.

Say you are haunted by bat monkey demons. Now, society has pretty much determined that there are no such things as bat monkey demons, and if you claim to be haunted by them, you're probably nuts. That being said, society doesn't know everything, and just because they've never been haunted by bat monkey demons, doesn't mean they can't exist. Maybe you have something in your brain that sees into other dimensions where bat monkey demons are common as weeds. So technically, you know the truth and reality of the situation. But it doesn't matter. To society, you're still nuts, and they'll give you all kinds of therapy and drugs and lock you up until you can convince them you no longer see the bat monkey demons. That's just the way things work in this world.


I think seeing bat demon creatures is a bit different than murdering someone, for a start believing in bat monkeys doesn't harm anyone. To kill means you've lost it
bigtime in any situation. A rational person can see other possibilities to get round a
problem instead of just killing someone because its easier. Although ive never been in that position to do it, just the thought of doing it is bad enough.

To me these people can't see sense, they are devoid of any feelings of apathy towards the human race. Which for me means they are on a different wavelength to normal people, so their brains aren't functioning properly. I dont know if this means they're insane, but surely there's something going wrong in there.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 01:44 PM
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I don't think so.

First, you'd have to completely define sanity. Then, everything that falls outside the boundaries is by definition insane. (should be 'outsane', but whatever)

Sanity is a mixed bag, depending on what time period you're working with, and what cultures you consider. I think the crusaders were insane. In fact, I think all religious zealots are insane. If I was unlucky enough to be alive in the 1600's, popular opinion would have labeled me the insane one.

Just something to consider...

Also, I think there's an extreme sort of sanity that you can't ignore. For example, killing someone to take their job, or their mate, or their property. That's pretty much standard operating procedure in nature, but in human society you're likely to be labeled insane if you engage in those behaviors.

How about killing your own kids? Animals do it all the time, to insure their own survival in lean times (you can always have more kids, if you can keep yourself alive long enough), and to clean the gene pool. When a person kills their kids in modern society, we label them insane, no matter what their reasoning was. But of course, all throughout history there have been numerous societies where infanticide was accetable, or even mandatory in some circumstances (deformities, birth marks, etc..)

So I don't know if it's a question of insanity, so much as it's a question of social mores - which are, of course, quite arbitrary, depending on your circumstances.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 01:55 PM
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From what I understand, the term insanity was used in the medical field to describe
someone with persistent mental disorder or derangement. Click here Apparently the
term is no longer used in that industry.

So it looks like the term is now used mainly for criminal accountability within the courts.

So I guess that means the term insanity isn't accepted as a description by professionals outside of the courts.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 02:17 PM
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Originally posted by WyrdeOne
I don't think so.

First, you'd have to completely define sanity. Then, everything that falls outside the boundaries is by definition insane. (should be 'outsane', but whatever)

Sanity is a mixed bag, depending on what time period you're working with, and what cultures you consider. I think the crusaders were insane. In fact, I think all religious zealots are insane. If I was unlucky enough to be alive in the 1600's, popular opinion would have labeled me the insane one.

Just something to consider...

Also, I think there's an extreme sort of sanity that you can't ignore. For example, killing someone to take their job, or their mate, or their property. That's pretty much standard operating procedure in nature, but in human society you're likely to be labeled insane if you engage in those behaviors.

How about killing your own kids? Animals do it all the time, to insure their own survival in lean times (you can always have more kids, if you can keep yourself alive long enough), and to clean the gene pool. When a person kills their kids in modern society, we label them insane, no matter what their reasoning was. But of course, all throughout history there have been numerous societies where infanticide was accetable, or even mandatory in some circumstances (deformities, birth marks, etc..)

So I don't know if it's a question of insanity, so much as it's a question of social mores - which are, of course, quite arbitrary, depending on your circumstances.




Good points


Society has evolved so much since the birth of man, as you said we use to burn people if they had different views than ours, but even then they knew murder was wrong.

Its hard to compare our social issues with that of animals though, because most of
their lives are based on survival (killing for food is one) wheras we IMO dont have that
problem as much as we did say 1000 years ago. We also know that most of our problems get taken care for us, namely food so we've probably lost that animal instinct.

i also doubt that an animal feels any type of guilt or remorse when they kill another.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 02:31 PM
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This is like those Jeff Foxworthy "You might be a red neck jokes". For instance, if you murder someone for sleeping with your wife and stealing all your money, you're probably not insane but...

If you murder someone so you can cook their heart and absorb their power...you might be crazy.

If your mother tells you to clean up your room but the chain smoking bat monkey demon who lives in your closet tells you to light the house on fire...you might be crazy.

If you think sending the girl you have a crush on a hermetically sealed jar of your urine is the perfect way of saying "I like you"...you just might be crazy.

Or something like that.

Spiderj


[edit on 8/10/2006 by Spiderj]



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 02:36 PM
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"Insanity" is you killing me for taking your parking space.
"Sanity" is me killing you for believing in Mohammed.
Hope this clears it up.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 03:03 PM
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I think it was Voltaire who described insanity like this:


Insanity is reasoning correctly from an incorrect premise.


It takes the criteria for sanity out of our actions, and puts it in to the foundation from which we have decided to take those actions.

If, for example, I believe that there are millions of spiders crawling around under my skin, how could I resolve that situation in a way that would appear to be sane? I'm not sure I could.

If a woman decides to slaughter her kids because she wants to hang out with a hunky guy who doesn't like kids...her premise (getting rid of her children), while despicable, is logical...therefore her actions, while outrageous and hideous, could be considered sane.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 03:15 PM
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Originally posted by Spiderj
This is like those Jeff Foxworthy "You might be a red neck jokes". For instance, if you murder someone for sleeping with your wife and stealing all your money, you're probably not insane but...

If you murder someone so you can cook their heart and absorb their power...you might be crazy.

If your mother tells you to clean up your room but the chain smoking bat monkey demon who lives in your closet tells you to light the house on fire...you might be crazy.

If you think sending the girl you have a crush on a hermetically sealed jar of your urine is the perfect way of saying "I like you"...you just might be crazy.

Or something like that.

Spiderj


[edit on 8/10/2006 by Spiderj]


LOL!



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 03:23 PM
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Originally posted by Essedarius


If a woman decides to slaughter her kids because she wants to hang out with a hunky guy who doesn't like kids...her premise (getting rid of her children), while despicable, is logical...therefore her actions, while outrageous and hideous, could be considered sane.




Isnt killing your kids illogical whatever the reason? To do it, meaning planning it and going through with it, is IMO insane because she can't see that the act is hideous to the eyes of the world. Remember, she could simply leave her kids for her hunky man.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 03:47 PM
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Originally posted by thesneakiod
Isnt killing your kids illogical whatever the reason? To do it, meaning planning it and going through with it, is IMO insane because she can't see that the act is hideous to the eyes of the world. Remember, she could simply leave her kids for her hunky man.


Good point...but I would argue that the fact she chose to kill her kids instead of just leaving them makes her cruel and evil, not insane.

Now if she killed her kids because she felt they had transformed into a dwarven demon horde...I figure that's insane.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 03:48 PM
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Originally posted by Enkidu
"Sanity" is me killing you for believing in Mohammed.

Insanity is believing that it's acceptable to kill someone for no other reason than their religion.

Hope that clears things up.



posted on Aug, 10 2006 @ 05:25 PM
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A few years ago in england, a monster called ian huntley lured 2 young girls to his
house and murdered them. He was found sane and sent to a high security prison
for the rest of his days.

In subsequent interviews he said it wasn't his plan to kill them, it was an instant
reaction. He killed the other girl because he said she was screaming cos her friend
was being attacked.

Now i ask you; is that the actions of a sane man? Would any normal person have
the slightest inkling to think about it, let alone actually do it?

people who take life when they can most certainly avoid doing it, especially
spontaneous acts of murder are unbalanced and mentally unstable.




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