To avoid the first level of great misunderstanding, the Facsimile Bipolar Political Sociopathy (FBPS) concept must include three large component parts:
- Presence of or stimulus for bipolar emotion and ideation somewhere in a given population;
- Social selection for personalities so affected;
- Transference of affect to surrounding others.
For a political thesis, the above makes for an awful prospect but one also too familiar in the interior designs of conflicted cultures assailed by both autocrats and ideological extremists. Were the same applied to entertainment communities, well then, we like our movie people and rock stars to be Out There, and not infrequently enough, we mean Really Out There.
Our entertainers energize us.
My up close and personal experience with overly enthused and somewhat reckless personalities is that when one is in their presence, the whole world expands: undreamed of things become possible: It's Yes! To that screenplay! Yes! To that Big Score on Ebay!
Enthusiasm is charismatic and catching, and a Great Enthusiasm may yet be Great; however, those of age, experience, and wisdom as well as more modest temperament should know and recognize the difference between a fair and good potential anything and an impossible dream, or an immoral and unethical one, likely to turn ugly and, in the end, turn out a dismal nightmare.
We may be entering an era in which we will discover just how deeply integrated mood and perception may be with biological processes and states. Thanks to such good natured and meticulous researchers as Jennifer A. Phillips, cited in reference, we may be able to smooth a path grounded in organic (in psychology, "organismic") reality that moves individual apperception, outlook, and perception toward aggregate social expression and related political dreaming and scheming.
This isn't entirely new.
The same has been more familiarly expressed as "what's good for the family, clan, or tribe" in light of the demands of a natural environment and (I'll cite Vine Deloria here as well) the influence of landscape on attitudes and beliefs, and from that we may see derived some combination of functional (e.g., provisioning) and spiritual (e.g., praying and sacrificing) cultural behavior.
What may be different, including some ivory tower ability to look over a broad related universe in ways never before possible, may be the methods in observation by which we may discern and test a broad vision of how things actually work.
Earth --> Biology --> Psychology --> Social Psychology --> Culture --> Language --> Political Culture
Working beside this want of a story that hangs together well may also be the idea of three dimensional political topology such that a culture's politics may be represented some as a mountain with a weighted center topped by a position in relation to other mountains and much other mass, caverns, ridges, and valleys arranged around the center and reshaping and moving it. Some large systems may prove more stable than others; some may fracture more easily or be fractured by a great ambition accompanied by violence that both stresses and changes those in its vicinity within themselves and socially: but cultures -- as small as a dyad, as large as a modern state -- move, shape, and transform themselves across time.
How they do it draws the curious as well as the intuitive.
How much do we want to know?
I should hope we might come up with something between an ignorant and perpetually guessing comprehension and, perhaps, a too Divine or mechanical and patterning perception.
We want to know a little more than we do today, but we may also wish never to comprehend our own predictability.
Some things, and in this day we have reason to hope, shall be left to God and the universe.
Historians, of course, have struggled with this form of looking and seeing for ages; fiction writers have long wrestled with it -- i.e., an intuitive approach to life's mechanics and mysteries that both creates the dots and draws the lines between them; but here with so great a compilation of data, knowledge, and philosophy at hand, we may well develop a kind of "cultural technocrat" that working on the engines far beneath but attuned to surface rhetoric may suggest helpful, even evolutionary, course corrections.
1. Phillips, Jennifer A. "Tracking Down the Footprints of Bipolar Disorder." ProQuest, June 2005: http://www.csa.com/discoveryguides/bipolar/overview.php.
2. Deloria, Vine. God Is Red: A Native View of Religion, Golden, Colorado: North American Press, 1994.
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