I've mentioned this story to several people in comments that I've left around the blogosphere. I find it extraordinarily poignant, for a whole bunch of reasons. Anyway...
I was on a (NLP), course in a hotel, one time. There was a break in proceedings, and I headed out of the lecture room for a snout (cigarette). I ran into an old confused-looking guy in the lobby. I say old - he was probably in his sixties. I can't remember why we started talking, to be honest, but I remember how he spoke: slowly but clearly, and his ideas appeared disjointed as though there were lots of things that he wasn't including in his dialogue, but then he said something quite extraordinary that I doubt I'll ever forget. "I've been to the Moon, you know," he declaimed.
Now, I know that most people would regard this as evidence of delusion, or something, and would make damn sure that they exited the conversation as quickly as possible, on the ground that they might be infected by the guy's supposed insanity. However, I see the world differently to most people. I think this guy was an authentic genius.
Now, I don't know whether he had been to the Moon (incidentally, I think that it seems unlikely, but that doesn't make it impossible), and I don't know whether he believed he had been to the Moon, irrespective of whether he had, or not, and I don't know whether he merely consciously imagined that he'd been to the Moon, and that that was a sufficiently "real" experience for him to make the claim as though he'd physically been there. That's not the point. The very fact that he was still able to formulate such an idea, at his age, when most people have forbidden themselves that level of whimsy (if that's what it was)... That's the point. You see, most people are living the lives that they permit themselves, after all the things that they've been told are impossible have been deleted. There's not a whole lot left, you'll note.
I told him the only thing that made any sense, in the circumstances. "I believe you."