Insane Societies


Alexander Liss





     As individuals, societies could succumb to insanity. To detect insanity of an individual one has to get into a detailed conversation with the individual or observe the individual's behavior and assert that it is detached from reality. An insanity of a society is in open - it is seen in a delusional culture of society, and when an insane society acts, its actions are so inhumane that there is no need for a detailed analysis.

     People encountering insane individuals do not want to see their insanity and find various excuses for their behavior. They even find a glorifying explanation for own behavior as tolerant, etc. A delusional culture of the insane society contaminates cultures of its observers and people have even more reasons to come up with various excuses for the insane society, because they are succumbing to that insanity themselves.

     This is an irresponsible and dangerous behavior. Not confronted insanity stabilizes, becomes increasingly difficult to deal with, and causes insane behavior increasingly detached from reality, which is self-destructive and is aimed at destruction of others.

     Many events of the twentieth century could be explained only as a result of insanity of society. They have many causes: economic, cultural, ideological, etc., but all these causes cannot force a normal society into such degree of inhumanity.

     In the beginning of twentieth century insanity of European society caused death of millions of people through military actions and diseases. The magnitude of this disaster should bring the society to its senses, but it did not. Insanity of the Russian society progressed into a civil war and acceptance of communist ideology as a basis of its culture. Insanity of the German society progressed into ideology of Nazism uniformly accepted as a basis of its culture.

     Gradually, the society of Japan succumbed to insanity on its own.

     Untreated, insanity spread through the world. In societies, which did not succumb to it, way too many found this insanity not only acceptable, but desirable. Insane actions as genocide were excused.

     Eventually, the insanity of society caused another mass destruction of human life.

     Even after the end of Cold War and disintegration of insane communist culture of the Soviet Union, severe forms of insanity continued torturing some societies. In Iraq, it was forcefully cured.

     When one's neighbor exhibits signs of dangerous insanity, one takes care of it, usually by calling police. This is done in spite of all respect for neighbor's privacy. Early intervention is a prerequisite of a good prognosis.

     In a case of a society, there is no police to call. Stable delusions rarely go away without intervention, before they cause substantial damage. Early intervention means unequivocal and perpetual pointing to the society's delusion and increasingly intrusive actions. When an early intervention has been missed, a late intervention is practically always needed; usually, the late intervention is expensive.

     Even for a member of an insane society, it is easy to recognize the disorder, and it is possible to recognize it early.

     When a dominant culture of a society is in a severe contact with a flexible, adapting to changing reality culture, then the dominant culture of the society is delusional and the society is insane. One could trace in history conflicts of dominant cultures with the Jewish culture and see how increasing insanity of the corresponding societies manifested itself in other areas.  

     Often, monotheism is a good preventive measure against insanity of society. No wonder that insane societies either destroy monotheism or corrupt it.

     Some delusional cultures could be cured through destruction of their delusions. As with individuals, such cure is often non trivial.

     Some cultures are beyond repair. They have to be destroyed completely and society should be rebuilt on the basis of another culture. This is always a difficult task.