Raise your hand if you want to be happy.
You are the reason why I came here tonight. You are going to be happy after this performance. Forever.
So enjoy the last few minutes of your misery, because…
A breakthrough study by scientists from the Institute for Mental Health in Helsinki has shown definitely that in order to be happy, one has to go insane first.
Hundreds of time-lapse monitorings and thousands of personality tests and in-depth interviews support the conclusion that the most depressing thing that can happen to you is – to be normal.
If you belong to the 94 % of the population stricken with normality, do not lose hope. Fortunately, it is not an irreversible condition. “Sanity does not have to be a lifelong stigma,” says soothingly Prof Ian Sane from the Department of Positive Psychopathology, further claiming that losing one’s mind might not be such a complicated thing as it appears at first sight.
“Many people assume that in order to go insane, they need a disposition for schizophrenia or a costly investment in hallucinogenic drugs. In fact, decent madness requires but little: to become fully aware of your situation,” adds Sane encouragingly. In his book Everybody Is an Airplane, Only I Am Crazy, Sane introduces a revolutionary set of four truths that might help even an obstinately sane person to lose their mind without much effort, literally within a few minutes.
You too may now apply Sane’s maniacal quartet in order to outknowledge your way to bliss.
1. You do not know who you are
The ideal stepping stone for mental derangement is to admit to yourself that you do not know who you are, where you come from, what you are doing here or why. No one knows.
The school tries to change the subject with the Golden Bull of Sicily, lichen insoles and the rule of three.
The media declare that we’re here to buy.
2. Reality does not exist
Once you realize you do not know who you are, look around. You will see that whatever you can see, it is not reality, but only a reflection of yourself.
If you assume that the majority of people are decent and honest, then they are. If you assume they are assholes, then they are.
If you think that broccoli is a delicious fragile source of iron, then it is. If you think it is a disgusting slimy minitree that makes you puke… then you puke.
If you believe you can invent book printing, electricity and teleportation, then you will.
However, if you have believed that you’re only capable of picking the remnants of crisps from your underwear in front of your TV…
Reality does not exist.
3. No one knows you
The inevitable aftermath of the previous point is that you cannot ever know anything nor anyone, nor can anyone know you.
No one will ever see you as you really are. They will always only see you as they want to see you.
No one will ever understand how you feel.
You are more alone than you have ever dared to suspect.
We are all just lonely pickles in our own private jars. We clink glass against glass with all our might, but our pickles never touch each other.
4. No one gives a damn about you
Before melancholy hits you after awareness no. 3, Prof Sane calms everyone down instantly: even if the others could know you, they wouldn’t give a damn about you.
Everyone is so deeply trapped in their own story, where you play just such a minor and meaningless role that no one could care less.
Even if someone loves you, they only love you because it makes them feel good. They cannot love you because of who you are, because they do not know you.
The full realization of all 4 truths can be detected by a temporary loss of peripheral vision and a tightening in the chest.
Stay calm and breathe. When the pressure becomes unbearable, it will suddenly cease and withdraw. Your vision will sharpen and you’ll feel a soothing sweetness on the soft palate. It may remind you of mango.
Congratulations. Welcome to insanity.
Translation by Bob Hýsek. Revision by Matthew Sweney. Thank you, guys.