People think it is an art. It is sheer murder; it is a crime against the trees. And the same crime has been committed against man all over the world. Your roots have been cut.
Intellect can have flights, but it has no roots. Once in a while a genius may suffer from his own intelligence, and finally either he will commit suicide – because the tension of his intelligence will become too much, his thoughts will become too many – or he will go mad.
In the West many professors, many philosophers, mathematicians, painters, poets, novelists – all kinds of creative people who have genius – have gone mad or have committed suicide. A few have done both. First they went mad, and then when they were thought to be cured and were released from the madhouse, they committed suicide.
Vincent van Gogh, one of the great painters of Holland, was in the madhouse for one year. He was released, and the next day he committed suicide. And he wrote a letter to his brother in which he mentions, “It is better not to be, than to be mad. I don’t want to be mad again and I know I cannot avoid it; my mind is again moving in the same directions. All their medicines and tranquilizers can keep me normal in a madhouse, but to live in a madhouse is not life. At least I will have the satisfaction that, although I could not live my life, I could manage my own death. I was not the master of my life, but I was the master of my death.”
And he was so young, only thirty-three years old, but one of the greatest painters the world has produced. His insights were such that people who have been studying his paintings are simply puzzled, they cannot figure out how this man managed – because one hundred years ago he painted stars as spirals. You don’t see stars as spirals, nobody has ever seen spirals, and in his paintings all his stars are spirals. Even other painters were saying, “Watch out. You are going towards insanity. This is nonsense, nobody has ever seen it. Stars are not spirals.”
Van Gogh said, “What can I do? I see them as spirals.” And after one hundred years, just four weeks before one hundred years had passed, modern physicists came to the conclusion that stars are spirals. Our vision…because they are so far away, that’s why we cannot see that they are spirals.
Now people are puzzled. Van Gogh had the insight, had the genius – without any instruments. It took one hundred years for the scientists to find out, with all kinds of sophisticated instruments, that stars are spirals. Van Gogh, with his bare eyes…
But he himself started thinking he must be mad. No, nobody supported his vision; even painters, great painters laughed. And this was not only one case, this was the case about all his paintings. He was seeing things which nobody else sees.
A genius is always ahead of his time. The bigger the genius, the farther in the future is his reach in time. Nobody is going to agree with him. He will be thought mad.