Funny - well, funny is totally not the right word in this context, especially after two hours sleep and the amount of stress that inevitably accompanies this most unfunny phenomenon - how I struggle to get any work done in the past five weeks, and then this morning I do most of it in just two hours... Oh well, I have time to blog, that's the important thing...
While taking a short coffee break from reading and reviewing some flash fiction stories I read this article about creativity, eccentricity and the schitzotypal personality.
In short, it discusses the various studied links between eccentric behaviour and analysed levels of creativity in individuals. It also shows a link between schitzotypal personalities (those more open to metaphysical phenomena, more likely to dress strangely or claim to see and hear things others don't, or have a tendency towards superstition and so on) and familial histories or connections with schitzophrenia.
It does also say that schitzotypal traits are not a sign of schitzophrenia and do also occur in people who have no known family history or connection with schitzophrenia, and that highly creative people are not necessarily schitzotypal (though it is then suggested they have high IQ and or memory retention), but basically eccentricity is linked with low inhibition of stimulus absorption, i.e. highly creative people tend to have less ability to filter out stimuli which are irrelevant to their current situation and therefore are more likely to make unusual connections between ideas.
I found this all very fascinating.
I couldn't help but think that ADHD and ASD are also both 'disorders' where individuals have difficulty filtering out stimuli and a lot of highly creative people (Einstein, Gates etc.) are thought to have either one or both of these conditions.
The article also suggests that these schitzotypal traits are becoming more and more accepted in modern times and even sought after in the workplace. I want to believe this, I really do. I wonder though if there wouldn't be a 'normal minority' backlash if too many people were suddenly to let loose their creative, eccentric side?
Perhaps this is just paranoia on my part, but so much of society seems to be about subduing eccentrics still. From schools not allowing 'unnatural hair colour' because it seems 'less professional' to Governments refusing to legalise marriage between anyone other than a man and a woman - the state norm according to God (I have yet to hear God's personal views on this as, apparently, the only reference to God not supporting gay marriage is the writings of a man who claims to have heard God's voice thousands of years ago - as if that itself isn't schitzotypal behaviour).
It's very challenging creating those round holes, you know, circles are very precise and it takes a steady hand to determine the boundaries of what is 'normal', so no one is going to rush to start accommodating square pegs, I'm fairly certain of that.
That said, we square pegs are quite entertaining, so the round pegs have always tolerated us to some degree. We bring colour and surprise into their normal, predictable lives. As long as we aren't too confronting, too challenging, too unpredictable...
I can definitely account for schitzotypal traits being hereditary. It is running amok along one branch of my family, and the distinction between schitzotypal and normal behaviour is very evident. Though I'll leave it up to the individual branches of my family to decide which branch is the schitzotypal branch...