A Brilliant Madness: John Nash

A Brilliant Madness: John Nash

Psychology  -   90 Comments
Ratings: 7.98/10 from 84 users.

A Brilliant Madness - John NashA Brilliant Madness is the story of a mathematical genius whose career was cut short by a descent into madness. At the age of 30, John Nash, a stunningly original and famously eccentric MIT mathematician, suddenly began claiming that aliens were communicating with him and that he was a special messenger.

Diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, Nash spent the next three decades in and out of mental hospitals, all but forgotten. During that time, a proof he had written at the age of 20 became a foundation of modern economic theory. In 1994, as Nash began to show signs of emerging from his delusions, he was awarded a Nobel Prize in Economics. The program features interviews with John Nash, his wife Alicia, his friends and colleagues, and experts in game theory and mental illness.

Go beyond the Oscar-winning drama "A Beautiful Mind" and learn more about the life of troubled mathematician and Nobel Prize-winner John Nash and his struggle with mental illness in this PBS "American Experience" documentary. Exclusive interviews with Nash and wife Alicia are included.

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90 Comments / User Reviews

  1. ASF

    Is the repeat @ 35:00, 38:00 to give a taste of madness

  2. MadBrit

    I believe in God - I don't believe in Bitcoin

  3. Che45

    Im not sure if you people are all nuts or genius? Forget a beautiful mind watch the movie "pi"

  4. Leigh Atkins

    The Eagles sang it best - "So often times it happens, that we live our lives in chains, and we never even know we had the key"...
    We as humans deny our own power every single day in one way or another. John Nash always had the ability to 'decide' to force himself to 'think' rationally all along, but he chose to deny his own ability to do it for his own reasons (I believe that one of them was "freedom from conformity" among others no doubt). But one thing I've learned about humanity is that we NEVER EVER do something (or not do something) unless there's a payback - even if it's self-destructive, there's always a payback of some kind & whatever his reasons, he let it go on that long almost by choice. There may have been a stage where it didn't even occur to him that he had a choice. But once he realized it, he made a decision & that was that. It was that simple - a decision. I've seen people do it a hundred times myself.
    We have a startling amount of personal power & control over the way we think & behave, but the world is telling us that we don't & it's a gigantic lie, because once you discover it, your whole world changes. And you only have to DECIDE that you want to know about it, to 'see' it. We are the only creatures who have the ability to switch our own epigenetic switches through choice & sculpt our own minds through choice & to neglect or deny that power is terrible.
    Every thing, every second, every action, every day is a choice, and every single one of us has it.

  5. bluetortilla

    Our condolences on their passing so suddenly. It would seem that life gave the poor Nash family many unwelcome surprises.
    Nash's mathematical contributions were great and there can be no doubt of his genius, but paranoid schizophrenia is a horrifying and completely debilitating disease. It ruined the genius he had and destroyed not only his own life for a long time but also the lives of those around him. It is a happy fact indeed that he went on to regain lucidity and his memories. There is no genius in psychosis, only very painful and frightening suffering. Those who think Nash went on to discover something deeper in his illness, or that he was prosecuted for 'being different' have no clue on the nature of the disorder. With great compassion I would say that Nash is as famous as he is because of the stigmatizing nature of his illness, and that aspect of him has been exploited many times over by the media, including in this documentary.
    Whether or not he deserved the Nobel Prize I cannot say- my understanding of math is way too puny to even began to understand what he was doing.

  6. josephbstewart

    With sadness; Dr. John Nash and his wife, Alicia, died yesterday [05-23-2015] in a MVA on the NJ Turnpike.

  7. Oz

    John Nashis not alone in hismental delusions.
    My question is howis it possible so many others have had the same dillusion?


  8. Pysmythe

    John Nash and Louis Nirenberg were just announced co-winners of the Abel Prize in Mathematics for work they did in the fifties. ;)

  9. awful_truth

    An excellent documentary regarding John Nash that epitomizes the fine line between genius, and insanity. His statement that 'rational thought is a form of conformity; is insightful in itself, when you consider the idiosyncratic behaviour of people such as Albert Einstein, and Sir Isaac Newton. Interestingly, I have seen another documentary after the 2008 economic collapse where Nash himself admits that the experts in the economic community placed too much importance on the mathematics of game theory. Perhaps his journey down the rabbit hole and back has exposed his inherent strength in thinking itself. Definitely worth checking out!

  10. Kimberley

    Thank you so much for this thoughtful depiction of Mr. Nash and mental illness. Well done!

  11. kali97

    what year was this documentary made? please help, need to reference it for a paper

  12. abdulwalee

    He was possessed by a Jinn...

  13. oppose09

    Obama winning the nobel peace prize would point to some sort of organized conspiracy which has nothing to do with this doc.

    You cant claim there is no organized plot for power and domination over others!

  14. A Aristodemou

    a perfect mind, a perfect man

  15. Hemen Evul Talib

    I believe this man NEVER became ill, I can not explain everything, but...
    A genius becoming "ill" just the time of his best days, and the times he began wondering about a conspiracy connected to the magazines, and the pope, and subliminal messages telling him things, THIS man was genius enough to almost discover the secret society called (illuminati)....

    This man became the victim of all the theories of how illuminati gets rid of people that threat their secrecy, or undercover society, ( this man didnt know how to explain it, There maybe wasnt any aliens connecting with him ) but there were things he couldnt explained, things that were as mysteries as aliens, things as Illuminati, this also explains MUCH of his illness in the brain, THATS where illuminati always points, they destroys our minds, This is what they did to this genius, They made a scandal out of him because he was a threat to them and their undercover..

    Everything makes perfect sense, just think about it, NONE of his relatives could explain his (sudden illness), and when he arrived home from the treatments, he couldnt explain the hard level of medications on him, and he also spoke of amnesia, forgetting his memory, "slower mind thinking was also mentioned of happening after his treatments, I beg to those who know much about the illuminati to watch this again and think about it. It makes perfect sense, at first they didnt know about John nash, till john nash was about 30 years old and his success reached the magazines, meaning, the illuminati found out about this genius, and they took nash down because nash alone couldnt stop them, he was too unaware of the secret society of the bavarian illuminati...

    HOW COME that he didnt get a nobel prise for his work that actually helped the monetarisystem , The monetarisystem is "totally 100%" controlled by the illuminati nowadays, and by knowing that nash was a genius and came up with the strategy-games , they used his work for their own profits and nash was forgotten about.... Please dont ignore the facts...., I'm totally convinced by my theory, it makes more sense the more u think about it...

    1. Epicurus

      no. he has schizophrenia. and maybe you should get yourself checked out as well.

      the illuminati is not real.

    2. .::Psyched Blog::.

      If you look at history itself... you can see that the so called "sane" were not always the sane ones, just as the so called "insane" weren't always as insane as others told them they were... Truth is that humanity as a whole is rather "sick in the head" and most people are too blind to see this thanks to their own ignorance...

      What that has to do with whether or not the "illuminati" exist, well, again, learn our own history and if you then still not believe in a government behind a government, then please live your ignorant life in true bliss, because you deserve that happiness...

      Pretending the ones in power cannot be corrupted is as ridiculous as saying you can't cook a frog without it jumping out of the pot...

    3. Ann Rhodes

      The skepticism isn't because people think governments can't be corrupt, it's recognizing how inherently ludicrous conspiracies are. You're giving essentially supernatural qualities to ordinary people who act as if they were created from a hodgepodge of Disney villains, and are apparently able to utilize vast networks of everyday people across nations and cultures with a record of maintained secrecy that would make the North Korean government jealous.

      Having an open mind is as useless as remaining purposefully ignorant when you allow it to reach the point that permits your brain to fall out. If it walks like a duck, looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck then it's probably a duck, and don't go looking for zebras.

    4. Bad_Conduct

      Doesn't really make sense. His family checked him in, he was delusional about communists in red ties, and hearing voices in his head. Why would the "Illuminati" take him down, when he would have been more than willing to join such an organization?

      He was genetic susceptibility to schizophrenia; as proven by his youngest son with the same situation. There's no mention of him experimenting or not with drugs in the 60's, but that wouldn't shock me if it started the behavior change.

      Sometimes people just want a little bit more in life. You are a perfect example. The world is a much more interesting place when everything is part of conspiracy. I think you are making something simple into something more complicated than it should be.

      Even if you are right, what difference does it really make? Are we all supposed to be like "OMG! Call the police!"? Your theory changes nothing, and has no impact on our daily lives. It has nothing to do with me getting up tomorrow and going to work, or making my car payments or buying healthy food.

      Human society has always been this way, it will never change. NASA is working on faster-than-light travel, and we have some fancy machines running around on Mars. Yes, some of the new policies and rules are kind of ridiculous. But go watch a documentary on World War 1 trench warfare, and let me know what you would rather be doing. Conscription or TSA pat downs?

      Nash did the same thing you, and many other conspiracy theorists are doing these days. You are trying to solve the riddles of the Universe. Eventually Nash gave up and returned to a normal life. Maybe you should put those ideas aside and focus on what's real.

    5. Jerry Michaud

      This Documentary was amazing , but more amazing is the fact that the replies that people have made to your comments are as uneducated as they show the pulse of society. Its a shame to go on this thread but one must sometime indulge in trying to enlighten others, so to the undying skeptics may one day see the real world they live in .

      The Illuminati or what ever you prefer to call the elite establishment as reported by Hemen is in fact real. The secret world order do exist and the fact that most do not have a clue of their motive and existence is no Juju black magic, its always been there for millennium . Do they want to control people like Mr Nash ,of course , the same as they made sure that all of the operation paperclip ,where all of the Nazi Dr.And physicist have been protected during and after the war. The head of NASA were former Nazi,the head of the CDC and other program were ex-Nazi the CIA were design on the gestapo . and that's one example that can be clearly and easily research and proven.the Builderburger group is no fiction, and as far as it would be impossible to hide their ideology and motive as impossible? well go back to the video on fluoride and see how easy it is to discredit whisleblower and other that do come forward . I wont go to 9/11 cause people are yet to accept the truth on this one. heres another easy one , the Meeting of Jekyll Island of 1913. And see how they manage to keep you from knowing the agenda .

      Lets face it we are happy with our little life and little truthfulness .Its too complicate to see the real world, so we dismiss it. And the more affraid we are the more we fight to denye the possibility that yes we are sheep in this great game of life that we are no more different then the little creature in the movie ANTs to come back to the Disney comments.Until you can see that the moral of the movie in itself was a great message, you are no more intelectualy elevated then a 6 year old that sees bright colors on a screen and go wow. Clarity ...its about the fact that you do not want the little ant to know you are enslaving them even tho you already own more then you'll ever need ,not even one can know ,because if one manage to expose the truth and it does not conform, then the rest will stop being scared and will revolt and your reign will end. Two easy moment in history to confirm what I am talking about!. The french revolution. For the people who prefer educate them self from movie instead of research, see les miserables , and second , the the American independence war against the British , and no it had nothing to do with the price of tea lol . It was about the British, or should I go deeper? The banking establishment (see Rothschild) , attempt to stop the Americans from creating their own money . The same as the war of secession ,and most likely why JFK was assassinated (see, green back currency). SO you should have enough to start some real research of your own to stop regurgitating stuff you have read or watch on TV and find your own truth instead of the one you are fed . ironic , FED as in federal reserve, the Banking system and wall street as a whole, isn't it what John Nash was exposing by his theories ......Anyway do your research and inspires instead of being afraid and critical of others ideas and theory .you might learn something. Respectfully.....

    6. Conspiracy Theories are Stupid

      Conspiracy theories are the easy way out

  16. James Kirk

    power that can tip over the edge if not controled from within

  17. wt1776

    Powerful documentary of a great man.

  18. Mistymoo

    Fantastic doco

  19. John Krisfalusci

    wow hes like me, i studied advanced mathematics in middle school and i entered the us navy as a nuclear reactor operator electronics technician when i was 18, and i too went through delusions and fear that the government was spying on me; and i too, just recently, at age 29 realizing how beautiful life is after quitting meds cold turkey. it is a wonderful thing, and i still refuse to get a job because of w2s. ^_^

    1. sadf@yahoo.com

      just because people are watching you, does not mean you are crazy!

  20. Aldo Solari

    An exceptionally good documentary. We are lucky there are docu producers who know how to grasp the souls and works of others. Thank you.

  21. Aldo Solari

    It is amazing (and it happens, frequently) that people dislike brilliant mathematicians (and theorists, in general) while functional analphabets who appear on the TV screen are cheered up by the hundreds of millions ...

    1. Sam rutherford

      Well aside from the fact your sentence makes no sense, you could just as well reverse a subjective argument like yours. I imagine most people would dislike this particular mathematician because he's been a bit of a*shole ... if we're brutally honest.

    2. Wesker

      You clearly don't understand art or self expression. Who are you to say that entertainers who are celebrated for their talents, shouldn’t be put on a podium by those who appreciate them? Just because you don't think they're contributing anything useful, or understand them doesn’t make your opinion somehow valid. That's a really arrogant narcissistic viewpoint.

    3. shanpeit

      Entertainers are just that ENTERTAINERS. THEY DO NOT CONTRIBUTE ANYTHING SUBSTANTIAL TO SOCIETY THAT in any way shape or form justifies their exorbitant incomes.

  22. Guest

    "I am not thinking anything crazy but there are different possibilities. I don't know what the future holds exactly, even if it's not such a long future...(pause) for me. Of course the future in general is presumably long, unless things really got bad, unless a miracle happens"
    Those are the last words that were chosen for this film, they are very profound and calculated on his part, we can feel the hesitation in the pause, the perception that lives inside of him, a dialogue he has learned to keep quiet to the outside.
    And then he puts the dot on his " i " board, right in the center.

  23. Guest

    After following this conversation between you three, i decided to give this doc a viewing. I found it to be amazing. I too had seen the Hollywood movie but this is so much better with the addition of interviews of the real Nash.
    I like when he says something in the line of "those thoughts came the same way math solutions came, so i believed them".
    So many attrocities were performed on people who were considered insane in those days (and perhaps it is still happening in different ways), i remember hearing a lot about the asylum St Jean de Dieu in Montreal, lobotomies was their specialty.
    Despite the wide abuse, Muniz received a nobel prize for his work on lobotomies in 1949.

    1. Guest

      "...so I believed them."
      That IS a hell of a revealing statement, isn't it?
      The noble power of intuition, but an evil twin, in truth, dressed up in the muse's filched finery, and so presumed to be pristine, though she strums but a cacophony on her gutted harp, that yet sounds through the mind of the man smitten as the purest song of heaven.

    2. Guest

      Who are you? Your words awaken a like soul's slumber.

  24. knowledgeizpower

    @Pysmythe I just watched this one and I liked it thanks.... I remember watching the movie based on his life. This gets into more detail like his first marriage and older child. His wife loved him dearly I was happy to hear they got remarried again. But I like the ending how he personally says he recovered schizophrenia he says he just willed it and decided to think rationally that is touching. I don't suffer from this disease you already know because I shared with you about my bouts with depression/anxiety which we have in common. I just don't want to be medicated anymore so I just quit taking meds that was hard as hell to do because of the withdrawls how it makes you feel.

    But as I have gotten older and understand of hows and whys I feel this way and how I can deal each day I had to look back some years. I think it started with me when I was 15 years old. Things that were happening in my life with family and deaths that occured just alot of compacted events stacked on top of one another that is like too much pressure and i start breaking down you know. So its more of like my environment and what is happening around me that I like feel like the weight of the world is on my shoulders type of feeling. I don't have to allow these things right so I have learned that over time. And I also have learned that I choose situations choose my environment sometimes in order for me to stay sane I have to seperate myself from negative people and situations no matter what like choosing the right relationships choosing positive friendships even staying away from family members that cause me stress thats a Big one For Me Lol... I have this bad thing about thinking I can fix everything like if someone has a problem like I can help and with situations that I have no control over and stuff I have that real bad I have to catch myself. Like I have always been responsible person but I Am Not Resposible For Anyone But Myself and My Children. People can come and talk to me about Their Problems like certain friends and Family and Their Issues for comfort and support I like want to help them but really Their Problems or Constant Problems they are having I can't fix and that stresses me out...It sounds crazy right... But anyway I have to stop that and think about myself but I just don't want to be selfish if that makes sense. So thats why I should choose friends choose to be around family choose to have relationships that are positive because I really want to be positive as well...In a way maybe you might act this way too or have some of the same feelings you are a good guy I like Ya..Gawsh Was That a Load?? lol okay anyway Pysmythe I"ll check back with ya later....Peace

    1. Guest

      Eat right, sleep right, get exercise for the stress, and, above all, be willing to let Time work its magic, and almost all wounds can be healed, though maybe not without scar-tissue...but which has it's uses, too, right? Without elaborating too much, I will say that what precipitated a HUGE downward spiral for me, which took several years to really recover from, was a very unexpected death in my family, literally two hours after the first formal family-portrait we'd had made in years... It devastated all of us, the way it occurred, but...at that time in my life (1991), I really was in terrible shape in so many ways, and I think it affected me far worse than any of the rest of us. Not too long after, I ended up in the hospital, cutting myself up with razors (to relieve the pain, believe it or not...), and starving myself to the point of collapse...

      Did you ever see that film 'Girl, Interrupted' ? Well...this GUY was a lot like some of those GIRLS for a while, I'm afraid...(lol)

      But seriously...One thing that amazes me about Nash is: Like you said, he says his symptoms haven't really disappeared, but he simply chooses to ignore them and live rationally anyway. And I don't see how he pulls that off, with his particular diagnosis, which is one of the worst you can get. It seems a little akin to a deaf person "choosing" to be immersed in a world of sound, and so must be mentally exhausting, having to construct a reality constantly intruded on by threats of unreality; like choosing to hear things you cannot actually hear, and constantly needing to develop rational meaning out of them. But...maybe it's not a 24/7 thing, I don't know.

      Does that make any sense? Whatever the case, it's a very powerful brain and will he has...

    2. Guest

      I was rereading your post, there's so much information in it, lol.

      One thing I wanted to ask: Are those making demands on your time and emotions about their problems mostly female, I hope? If that's the case, then probably they mostly just want you to listen, lol. If you have to disengage yourself a bit emotionally, while still being there for them, try not to feel bad about that. You're not being selfish at all, doing what you have to do to take care of yourself. You've got kids, and staying healthy for them is your first priority, right? Everything and everyone else be damned, if it comes down to it!

      (I'm sure you already know these things, lol. Just saying...)

    3. knowledgeizpower

      No thats not the case lol...But yes those that are they want you to listen its just at times the things that you actually make decisions on in life you have a choice right. If those choices are good for you then you have positive things that occur right. If the choices that you make are bad then negatives happen. Sometimes situations or circumstances that are not in your control can happen and if you have the strength then its more easy for you to deal with. Everyone needs help some point in time. So if you repeat those negative choices you will get them same things and sometimes that can happen with those around you that talk to you about their problems so you cannot allow yourself to get sucked in to that because its something that one can make a choice to change...So if I need to seperate myself from those stressful things in order for me to stay in a positive light and I have to make good choices myself that benefit my health was that alot again lol....okay I'll stop here....Peace

  25. Epicurus

    I love this documentary and this man. he is a great case study for schizophrenia and how a stubborn logical mind can sometimes defeat even psychological delusions.

  26. Guest

    Its a real shame that we don't see more of these stories, showing the other side of 'madness'. Unless your life is in some way affected by it, its all to easy to assume the worst or avoid the issue completely. My family has its fair share of sideways thinkers and though it can be difficult at times it can also be a joy, and in its own way very liberating. It can be a lonely world for these people, would it hurt to stop and chat now and then instead of shying away? They don't bite, (well not always!) its not catching and it does help :)

    1. Guest

      We were talking of books a little bit earlier today... Did you happen to read A Beautiful Mind? If not, I'm pretty sure you'd like it; there's a whole lotta stuff in that one that isn't even hinted at in the film adapted from it. However... it is a fairly considerably darker journey than even the Hollywood take, or than this doc is really able to convey, and there were a couple of times when I had to put it aside for a day or two. But once I reached the end of it, I didn't regret having read it. I suppose I'm trying to say: Even with your familiarity with lateral thinkers, you might want to stay focused on your objectivity, and keep your emotional distance a little bit, if you can, if you ever want to give it a shot. You mentioned loneliness, and there are long sections of it where that comes through about Nash almost unbearably.

      A tough read, but a good read.

    2. Guest

      I'm coming to the end of a few books right now and have been thinking about the next lot. I tried to watch the film a while back but found it a little too tidy. I guess I should let them off for that, it's not a subject that fits easily into 90 mins. Loved the Doc. and the Man so I should enjoy (?) the book. Actually from what you say its going to touch nerves and though I'm pretty skilled at faking emotional distance I know I'll cry like a baby inside. Is it odd to say I'm looking forward to it ? ;)

    3. Guest

      Into 90 minutes? No, you're right, it doesn't...The thing I did like a lot about that film, though, was James Horner's music to accompany Nash's mathematical insights, which I thought was just brilliant. He made his chord progressions sound like equations read, or even a logical proposition. Like: Ok, if this and this, then this...And if this and this, then this... Over and over again, quickly. Choppy, deliberate, contrived, bland in adornment, and beautiful in their unexpectedness, much like I guess math must be for those capable of seeing the music in it. He made it seem as if he was only up to a simple series of beginner etudes based on the Circle of Fifths, but he wasn't! He didn't directly reference it even once, in fact, but somehow made me think of exactly that, which for musicians is a big logical touchstone, as you may know. And so I could come by the joy in the math, which I don't understand at all, through the joy in the music, which I do a little. But... all that came in the first 30 minutes of the film, and the rest of it, even musically, was for the most part a let-down, until the very end.

      About the book, I may not have really conveyed what I meant, exactly. Absolutely, there are sad parts in it, and your sympathy (usually!) goes out to the man throughout, but...perhaps more than that, in the second half of it, it can be downright unsettling to your own "equilibrium" (a small pun, lol), as if something of real insanity might be threatening to rub off on you, as well... That's how effective the writing is in places in conveying a state of mind so disengaged from reality. Maybe there seem to be things just a little too familiar in some facets of his madness? Things common to us all, and if we were tweaked just a little bit differently...

      Oh, it's so hard to explain! I'm not sure that says what I mean, either, doggone it... Tell you what, If I can think of a few crisp sentences that are closer, I'll post them, how's that? lol.

      (This is frustrating...)

      [ edit- It's not that I want to IMPOSE anything on you, you understand...I just want to SAY what I MEAN, lol. ]

    4. Guest

      You don't have to answer but I cant help but wonder what your experiences are with this, is it personal? You seem to have some insight. His story has obviously touched you and I feel it's more instinctual than academic. If I'm overstepping the mark let me know, I don't mean to pry. I'm intrigued by what you say 'if we were tweaked just a little differently' I understand that. When your close to it, it becomes very obvious that the line between ordinary and not is very fine. Maybe it's there in all of us, we just haven't been triggered. I will give the film another go but not until I've read the book. It usually works better that way. And so you know, your not imposing anything on me, I like to hear what you have to say :)

    5. Guest

      I have a long on-and-off-again history with clinical depression (though, when it does come, it's not the really deep, dark abiding kind, lol) and, probably more significantly, panic-disorder, so...I suppose I'm kind of easily freaked out by certain things, anyway? lol. I take a very low dose of Paxil for the latter, and don't actually need anything for the depression these days, though I am a little down right now because of the time of year; the Sun goes lower, and so do I! I am a true child of the Earth and Stars, in that respect, I guess. I move according to how my Mother moves me. And in the glorious Spring, when She starts dressing up Her creations again, I'll come running like a little puppy with his tail wagging!

      So...while I've never had any experiences with psychosis (hearing things, seeing things that aren't there, etc.), yeah, such a story is probably more likely to get me uncomfortable than most. One of the typical symptoms of a full-blown panic-attack is a feeling of derealization, the sense that you and your surroundings are "fake" somehow...so when I'm reading a story wherein a guy never does get away from a distorted view of reality, I have to put it down and back up just a bit, every now and then.

    6. Guest

      You know it's beautiful that you recognise a seasonal rhythm to your depression, and I love the way you express that relationship. Do you let the puppy run in the Autumn leaves? There's nothing like a frosty morning and a long walk. I'm afraid the nearest I can come to that fake feeling is probably getting a little to high and wishing I wasn't, in fact that's why I don't do it any more. You might be right about things rubbing off on people, maybe that feeling is to close to something I've seen in others and it's a bit scary to think I can come that near to it. I don't even drink because I tend to get a bit lost in myself. You must be tough as old boots, an admirable quality in my book. My granddad used to have a saying, Its probably silly but its helped me out a few times, 'chin up, then chin up again' It helped me to help my Mum through and I can use it as shield in all sorts of situations.

    7. Guest

      Yeah, I do enjoy things like that, actually. It's only the first month or so of the changeover where I feel out of sorts...And once the Winter is really full on, I tend to pick back up, for the most part. I really love the snow, for example, since we live enough in the country to where it's not all immediately soiled over from traffic, you know? And long, solitary walks have been a mainstay of mine for years now...though I haven't had one in about a month, I'd say.

      I stopped the pot, too, a long time ago...It got to where it greatly exacerbated my panic attacks, for some reason. Don't drink, either, except maybe twice a year, and that's pushing it. I've found those things to be very bad for my anxiety disorder and depression, and I think nearly anyone, if they're not very careful, can end up with a worse problem than they started out with, as I had to learn the hard way...

    8. knowledgeizpower

      whatcha over here talking about Pysmythe :D
      I have not seen this one yet but I just might look at it though...
      Long walks Yep MUsIc Junkie Yep Puppies Super Yep LOL...I'll Mess With Ya'll Later Peace :)

    9. Guest

      This is a good one! I watched it about 6 months ago, before I ever started commenting here: Back in the days when I made everyone happy without them even knowing it! lol.

    10. knowledgeizpower

      Guess What You Still have that Effect on People Lol...Peace :)

    11. Guest

      Although you seem to feel like you are in a clouds at times, you sure expressed your condition clear as a sunny day. A good point for you.

      If that can cheer you up, it appears as if my departure will be postponed for a while longer, an unexpected outcome.

    12. Guest

      Oh, it does cheer me up!, but I feel selfish saying it... I know how disappointed you must be...Hopefully, not too long a delay? Is it shots, or a renewed passport, or something? Whatever the reason, be patient, girl!

      edit- I don't know if you saw it (hopefully not...), but I had to delete all the rest of that self-indulgent drivel I originally posted here...

    13. Epicurus

      i know exactly how you feel pysmythe. I have been diagnosed with generalized anxiety disorder and take the minimal dosage of cipralex (an SSRI).

      however within the past week it seems the pills are not working. im thinking its a mix between mid-term exams, which i had three of last week and one this tuesday, as well as the shorter colder days. winter always depresses me.

      im thinking of asking the psychiatrist if i should up the dose because i HATE this feeling. the derealization (i call it depersonalization) really bothers me because im usually the life of the party and when im like this i dont even feel real.

      well im sure we will both pull through the winter, halloween is coming up, that is always fun and my little sister is having a baby this january so i guess i got some good stuff to look forward to.

      as for this documentary, its actually one of my favourites on the whole site just because i admire John Nash and his ability to fight his schizophrenia with his supreme logic. my little brother has paranoid schizophrenia and before he started showing symptoms he was brilliant at maths and science. its a shame what psychological defects do to us, and even worse when people try to fight against psychology and psychiatry.

    14. Guest

      It really is tough sometimes, isn't it? You know what really ticks me off about my panic disorder? That it eased off pretty much completely for about 18 years, didn't have to take meds or anything...Then, just all of a sudden, about 3 or 4 years ago, it decided it had laid dormant for long enough, I guess, and kicked back in, for I have no idea what reason(s)...although I have to say it isn't nearly as bad as it was when I was in my mid teens to early 20's. I've since found out that such dormancy is not all that uncommon, unfortunately...But I'm lucky I can get away with taking what amounts to a child's dosage (10 mg.) of Paxil to control it, and I hope I don't have to up that any... Paxil, or any SSRI, can put a real damper on certain areas of your life, if you know what I'm referring to, lol, and who needs that, on top of everything else?

      Are you getting enough sleep, and avoiding stimulants, with exams going on? I'm sure I don't need to preach any about how much those things, or the lack of them, can be triggers. I love coffee -the real kind, with caffeine!- but can't have more than a cup a day...and sometimes not even that.

      I'm glad to hear that about your sister, and very sorry about your brother... Not right how brilliance can be brought low by such things, or sometimes even be hand in hand with them, like Beethoven, one of the world's all-time great manic-depressives...

      Or Nash.

      Did you read that book? God, the mathematical quality of that guy's mind was just phenomenal, certainly one of the finest in the century, and ALL his colleagues knew it. Lots of examples in it of him upstaging them, too, which was pretty funny!

      All in all, as far as the depression (or maybe more accurately, dysthymia, or S.A.D.) goes, I'm trying to make it through the next month or so on cruise-control, as much as possible. And, anyway, we've been here before, right? It's a hassle, but really not all that serious, in the last analysis.

      edit- I think I'll watch this one again tonight. I so love biographies/docs about super smart people.

    15. Epicurus

      lol the sexual side effects of the SSRI have been great for me. its like having sex on E. you can just go forever! lol

      ya i have cut out all caffeine from my diet but i really do need to sleep better. i dont usually get to sleep until about 3-4am and i get up most days at 9am so i really ought to change that but i love that few hours i have to my self at night....oh well.

      you're right that its not THAT serious, i know and have known people who had what we have much worse. just last may i had a friend overdose on xanax. it was awful but there was a silver lining. it made me realize and be very grateful that i dont have it as bad as some do.

    16. Guest

      Yeah, if you're YOUR age, lolol...Me? Man, I start huffing and puffing after a while, and just have to roll over (or fall over) for a few minutes...

    17. Epicurus

      lol yeah i hear ya.

  27. Aaron King

    Liev Schreiver is an excellent narrator. Highly underrated.

  28. Hodd

    No doubt they lock him up then and give him Thorazine, a chemical lobotomy. Gimme a break. No wonder he had such a hard time recovering.

  29. ProudinUS

    Sorry "Nobel" prize I meant to say

  30. ProudinUS

    Great doc. I Got kind of emotional when he received the Noble prize.

    I could have used his mind last week when I lost a hundred bucks playing poker!

  31. debbye

    this was wonderful & i had several tears in my eyes when he received the Nobel.

    thank you Vlatko, for this site!

  32. Druidia

    Truly one of the greatest exponents of the old saw that "there is a fine line between genius and madness." An awe-inspiring story.

  33. sara

    love this doc

  34. rationallyinsane

    people, go read "Inherit the Wind" solves the oppositional opinion on science and religion

  35. Hyde

    What I'm trying to get across is that both scientists and preachers have an irrational sense of superiority, thus, the never-ending battle between the Christian and the analyst is redundant in the first place.

    I never argued that they didn't differ in other aspects ( such as findings ). I'm arguing the irrationality of a person who has decided that everyone must think they way he does... Else wise face his "internet tough guy" act.

  36. danzoes

    Hyde you dud... reread kyles message.
    Kyle wasnt upset about religions pushiness (even though it is), but rather its irrationality.

    How dare you compare a preacher and a scientist. The mere fact that you do conveys your own ignorance.
    Preachers and scientists differ in the way one can prove their findings (i.e. truth) :)

    Go and learn a thing or two about science.

  37. Hyde

    How ignorant of you, Kyle.
    You call yourself rational yet you attack someone who believes differently. You're upset that someone is pushing their belief on someone else, then you turn around and do the same thing. I'm impressed at your overwhelming hypocrisy.

    Preachers and scientists alike are bigoted narcissists.

  38. Farabi

    okay,no need to answer that, I've read the previous comment. :p

  39. Farabi

    well said, kyle.

    His situation seems very much similar to the mathmatician in the movie 'the beautiful mind', as far as I can remember. the role was played by Russel Crow. was it based on John Nash's life?

  40. Survey Berbayar Manif

    Saw this after (re)watching A Beautiful Mind. Have to say that its quite different from the hollywood version. Nevertheless, quite an inspirational story :)

    Oh, n btw Karen, Jesus (peace and blessings be upon him) was not God, he never even claimed to be God in the bible, nor did he mention anywhere for him to be worshiped. He was however a great prophet, but still a man... I think it's better if you stick to the concept of God being one... and he never did become a man :)

    Which brings me to the question... what happened with John Nash's 'quest' of finding God?

  41. Kyle

    Karen, Karen, Karen... How ignorant of you to assume someone besides yourself, cares with one cell of their body about "god"... Doc Nash is a Scientist, us rational people cannot put faith in a fairy tale... Which unfortunately the traditional Christian god from the writings in the bible is fictional. Maybe you will FIND that some day, or better yet maybe it will find you when someone shoots your husband in the head for the 20 in his pocket so the crack-head can buy his fix, where you will ask "where is God???" yeah. You'll know right then. No God. or at least not one that gives a f*ck about any of us. Please refrain from ever telling someone about them finding "God".

  42. Karen

    I wish that I could assure My. Nash personally that his efforts to prove the existence of God were noble even though fruitless. God does exist. He is Jesus Christ. Mr. Nash, I pray that you find Him or better yet, He finds you.

    1. happywifenmom

      the very fact that you've confused "God" with his "son" (the Christ) speaks volumes on you're backwoods religious ferver. If less people like you were allowed to push irrational religion on others we would have less crazy people...

    2. tariqxl

      I don't subscribe to any religion but isn't having a go at them the same as them having a go at Muslims. The next big crusade will be the war between atheist and believers of any religion. You push your view on there being no god so are you not as bad? Can you not just let people have an opinion and just be happy...wifenmom?

    3. Jerry Michaud

      Wow this is getting better and better lol , GOD ,Jesus, Islam, Nash......How in the world have you guys go down this rabbit hole? the only reason one who believe in organized religion would ever dare consider Nash as his work in science goes against the fundamentalism of religion which teach us that all is created by GODS no less then 5 thousand years ago and that Dinosaurs walked along man to explain fossils is hilarious .let's be honest here, If it wasn't that Mr Nash was in search for the ultimate calculation and went after the GOD existence theory, he would be categorized as a coocoo along with Galileo ,Copernicus and even Darwin . Please give us a break .I can understand that one still need the believe in the needs of gods for things he cannot understand , but to try to embark Nash in this is ludicrous at best silly. come on ,Really ? And the pisses era will move on and the house of Aquarius will follow and what a shower it will bring to awake the sheeples . Respectfully.

    4. Craig Bailey

      Was you meaning to reply to my statement or just post a comment? I can't really see how your comment pertains to mine.

    5. Craig Bailey

      ps 2 usenames ;)

    6. Guest

      I 'liked' this, it made me chuckle. Surely God knows where all his sheep are.

  43. Tom

    A beautiful documentary. Very inspirational.

  44. ann walsh

    This is the first film I ever saw that a person with Mental Illness of his type was ever cured. Along with his nobel prize his second greatest achievement was overcoming his mental illness. All of the years of medication and hospitalization never helped. Would love to know what was the turning point that made John decide to be well again??

  45. c shark

    Obama got the nobel prize at the age of 48. he is better than nash!

    1. Smig Robustus

      Yeah....does that prize mean anything anymore.....

  46. skater

    i'll look into The Trap, CMcF. i love John Nash. despite the early arrogance--or maybe in part because he overcame it--there's just something so deeply good about him. it's difficult to watch him accepting the Nobel Prize without welling up. just so much hope about him. :)

  47. CMcF

    If you are facinated by John Nash I recommend the documentary The Trap, available on this very site.

  48. Jenny

    Great Documentary, thanks again Vlatko.

    1. Vlatko

      Thank you Jenny.

  49. Der Oberst

    Great documentary!

    Its a shame that this great mind descended into madness, his contributions could have been more plenty.

    Der Oberst

  50. eyepopping

    very profound documentary. and i do agree with dr. nash when he says that madness can also be a gateway to freedom from comformaty..