‘Divine Madness’ Reaches Out To Me Daily

Divine Madness.”

When I first saw the term, I thought of Zorba the Greek, played by Anthony Quinn, who embraced the fullness of life through robust emotions and actions. To laugh in the face of hardship and spit in the face of death, enjoying that special moment of life as if it was the last, and to hell with what anyone thinks.

To hell with negative thoughts. Live Life with the smile God meant us to project outwardly as well as within.

Now I see the term was indeed from the Greek. Plato gave the term to us, according to Morton Kelsey, an author of dream interpretation books such as “Encounter With God,” and the small, 101-page paperback one I’m reading “Dreams, a Way to Listen to God.”

“Divine Madness” is . . .

I stopped reading at the point Kelsey was to explain the “authoritative” view of what scholars deemed it to mean. I did not want to read it, but understand it.

Kelsey, an Episcopalian priest, was commenting on a belief that God exists “out there” but can break through to our world through supernatural ways, that “we cannot explain” nor “describe . . . [through] natural means, through sense experience and reason.”

This view, which he called a form of “mysticism,”  has been tolerated {my word} by the Catholic Church, although few if any modern theologians write about it. Kelsey said most follow another Greek philosopher, Aristotle, whose world view has been adopted by the West. We can only understand our world — obtain true knowledge — in two ways: through reason and sense experience, according to Aristotle.

Ah Scata,” is what this Greek says about that. [That’s a polite way of saying in Greek someone is full of crap.]

I’ve made myself open to a Higher Self for some two years now, allowing meditation to become a channel for Goodness to arise inside of me. It has “guided” me to seek love and compassion in several of the world’s religions, only to learn they say the same thing. I can get to Know the Almighty through love of, and service to, all of God’s creatures.

Call it “madness.” Call it the ravings of a simpleton. Someone a “little touched” in the head. It’s what I think of “Divine Madness.”  To understand there is a way of understanding above and beyond our senses, our experience, our scientific view of things.


Well, whatdayaknow? I was close on point, according to “Dreams, a Way to Listen to God,” by the Rev. Morton Kelsey. He said Plato described four types of “Divine Madness.” Prophecy, which we know from religious teaching, is one. “Cleansing” is another. (I like to see it as “purifying.”)  The Greeks would enter a temple and spend the night, telling of each dream to a “healer” versed in medicine and spiritual ways, who would interpret and help the dreamer. No one could be fully healed, the Greeks believed, without divine intervention.

Artistic madness” is a third version, according to Plato. Navajo Indians still practice it when a medicine man visits someone sick and makes a sand painting to influence the “soul” of the patient by helping to make it “whole” and in “harmony” again. Kelsey said the Greek Orthodox Church retained some of this in its icons, church architecture and paintings.

The fourth type of Divine Madness was the greatest of all — the madness of love,” Kelsey wrote. “It is through love that we connect to what is deepest and most meaningful in our lives.”

Could not help but smile on reading this. Made me kinda “stupid happy.”

20 comments on “‘Divine Madness’ Reaches Out To Me Daily

  1. […] out World, here comes a crazy Greek possessed with more Divine Madness. I raise a sword of correction in one hand, and a healing salve of Love in the other, with […]


  2. souldipper says:

    Ah Scata? Did you know that the bear in our Canadian wilds leave little droppings that we call SCAT? Now how did that happen? How did our bear decide to adopt this wee Greek word whilst chasing off the other pain-in-the-neck Europeans?

    Want to receive a smile from me? Look at 1:02 on this video. (I’m just squeezing this in – no reason for it being here!: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_LvAhTmLfc&feature=player_embedded#! ) The exclamation mark is part of the site address…


    • contoveros says:

      The “Levity Project” offered me 10,001 smiles of all shapes and sizes, like the three guys with goatees just like mine, and the pet-owners smiling while holding a rabbit in one scene and a cat in another. Was that a “U Gi Oh” card in the hand of a one of four kids? The World Cup in South Africa? A statue of a jockey racing “all out” on a horse running away from negativity?

      Thanks, sweetheart. Could not help but see your smiling face on half a dozen or more of the people.

      Amy. Indigo Blue. Paradise.

      michael j


    • contoveros says:

      “Scat” is also the jazz term for the type of musicial sounds Ella Fitzgerald, Louie Armstrong and even Bing Crosby sang to “mimic” instruments while singing. All nonsense sylables thast sounded like horns, trumpets and trombones.

      Funny how one of the few question in which we all usually have to answer “Yes” when posed — other than “Is the pope Catholic,” is “Does a bear scat in the woods?”

      Did I get that right? I’m Greek and it takes me a while to understand things, but I usually get them “in the end.”

      Thanks, my Amy

      michael j


      • souldipper says:

        Michael J – your use of those quotation marks…you Grecian comic!!

        Yes, you are always ‘getting it’. It’s one of those very delightful traits that our blog talks expose about you!

        “Funny how…” – yes! Who knew the reference to bear scat was to the sound and not the fallout!! 🙂


  3. insideoutdasg says:

    Everytime I come to your blog I can not help but to be mesmorized by your words… and talk about synchronicity? Watch for my Taco Bell posting! I have been toying with the idea that not only do all religions point to the same truths, but in fact, it seems to me, that life on this earth plane is merely a mix of all of the same ingredients, like Taco Bell! The Taco Bell plane, can be quite nice, us human beings do relish in all that this existance has to offer (even though the ingredients can be quite limited!). Like you, I too crave the experiences of “the other”.
    Diane at http://www.soulstrand.com


      • contoveros says:

        “. . . The three declared Objects of the Theosophical Society are:

        •To form a nucleus of the universal brotherhood of humanity, without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste, or color.

        •To encourage the comparative study of religion, philosophy, and science.

        •To investigate unexplained laws of nature and the powers latent in humanity . . .”

        — Gotta look into this. Sounds inviting.

        Thanks Walt.

        michael j


    • contoveros says:


      Come as often as you like. Rest. Try a little meditation and leave a note if you feel like it.

      Started reading Jung a little more than a year ago, got into dreams, and wrote them down “religiously” for six weeks starting on some Friday the 13th in February. Got the writings spread out in different notbooks throughout the house. Some day I’ll look for ’em and maybe compile them.

      Until then, I’ll seek inspiration from the dreams of today.


      michael j


  4. […] post by contoveros var addthis_language = 'en'; Filed under Uncategorized ← Οι […]


    • contoveros says:

      — This is all Greek to me —


      It’s from a site in Greek about educational issues.

      Check it out if you can read a little Greek.

      michael j


  5. saradode says:

    God, Kazantzakis (especially “Last Temptation”), madness, and being Stupid Happy…some of my favorite things…




  6. souldipper says:

    Yay! Just made my day! Good ol’ Episcopalians sure know how to intellectualize…I hope I’ve experienced them all and can stand to vote for LOVE!!!

    – Anglican Amy


    • Anglican Amy,

      Episcopalians rock.

      At least those of whom I have come in contact with the past couple dozen years.

      I came across the book only after trying to get my head around a dream in which a writing pad, a rifle and a “surprise” party for me stayed in my consciousness on awakening. I “stumbled” onto the Rev. Morton Kelsey’s book, reading it for the first time this morning, until I hit the section on “madness” and it inspired me to write about those crazy Greeks.

      Made my day, too!

      michael j


  7. Hi Mr Mike
    Talk about synchronicity. i just finished this. are you writing this just after reading my “about me”. no matter, i am mad, don’t you know? in both senses of the word. mad, i tell you mad. There is something happening in the mind that some call nirvana, some call centering, some call god. it’s the same thing a perception of the universe, non-duality or GOD, depending on world view.
    el Loco Gringo


    • Walt,

      I had read your posts yesterday, and thought I left a comment but could not find it just now. I re-read the one about God (Her) as well as the “about” at the new site, the cartography of the psyche. May have gotten wisdom from you through osmosis and/or we were simply are thinking the same thing. Synchronicity occurs a lot nowadays.

      Nirvana, centering, “in the zone.” whatever you want to call it, is where I try to land when I meditate, and, sometimes, when I write and keep myself out of the writing.

      Cool, ain’t it?

      michael j


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