Elyn Saks is Associate Dean and a professor of Law, Psychology, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and an expert in mental health law [Wikipedia].
She also suffers from schizophrenia. The following quote is taken from her recent, moving TED talk, embedded below.
Let's start with the definition of schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is a brain disease. It's defining feature is psychosis, or being out of touch with reality. Delusions and hallucinations are hallmarks of the illness.
Delusions are fixed and false beliefs that aren't responsive to evidence and hallucinations are false sensory experiences.
This makes me wonder. How many of my own beliefs are in fact slightly delusional? How can I know my sensory experiences are faithful representations of the world? In other words, if we could measure the state of people's minds in increments, wouldn't in fact very many people qualify by this definition to some extent?
And what exactly is this reality that people experiencing psychotic episodes are said to be out of touch of? Respectively, what reality are they experiencing?
Especially contemplating the following:
fabricating reality, the brain: alien processes running under the hood (part i), the brain: our two cognitive minds (part ii).