How extreme isolation warps the mind
When people are isolated from human contact, their mind can do some truly bizarre things, says Michael Bond. Why does this happen?
"What message can we take from these stories of endurance and despair? The obvious one is that we are, as a rule, considerably diminished when disengaged from others. Isolation may very often be the “sum total of wretchedness”, as the writer Thomas Carlyle put it. However, a more upbeat assessment seems equally valid: it is possible to connect, to find solace beyond ourselves, even when we are alone. It helps to be prepared, and to be mentally resilient. But we shouldn’t underestimate the power of our imagination to knock over prison walls, penetrate icy caves or provide make-believe companions to walk with us."Posted on 2014-05-19T17:46:45+0000