“No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness.” -Aristotle
“No Great Mind Has Ever Existed Without a Touch of Madness.” Is that True
We all know the type of person that Aristotle is describing when he said “no great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness.” Trump. Tesla. Elon Musk. Thomas Jefferson. Napoleon. Douglas MacArthur. Winston Churchill. They’re great men, but they’re also somewhat eccentric.
Trump was a brilliant political animal who knew just what strains of conservative thought to tap into. He also never slept, only ate fast food, and liked to tweet about anything and everything under the sun.
Tesla was a great mind, one of the main inventors behind the adoption of electricity, but he was eccentric.
Elon Musk is one of the greatest innovators of our time. But, again, he’s eccentric. Like Trump, he drinks voluminous amounts of diet Coke each day. He is thrice wed, seems to be interested in everything, talks about colonizing Mars, and gave his new son a crazy name.
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Thomas Jefferson was a brilliant political theorist. But he also was always on the verge of bankruptcy, made many wild statements about liberty and revolution, and was always tinkering with some new invention. Not all of that is bad, little of it is, in fact. But he was eccentric.
Napoleon was a genius on the battlefield. He led his men to many a victory that should have been impossible. But he was also a bit eccentric and egotistical.
MacArthur was another battlefield genius and excellent strategist who had his “touch of madness.” He spoke of himself in the third person, was a gloryhound, and adopted many Oriental customs.
Finally, there’s Winston Churchill. He was one of the greatest men of all time; he saved the West, fought for the Empire, was the last great historian, and gave many a brilliant speech. But he was also a bit out there. He drank from when he woke up to when he fell asleep, including two bottles of champagne a day. He smoked about four cigars a day. He wandered his house naked and bathed in front of visitors.
All of those leaders are or were great men. But they were also a bit mad. So, yes, it looks like Aristotle was correct. No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness.
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