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I am a madman in the same manner in which Socrates was mad. As Spinoza was mad. As Joyce, Dickenson, Blake, Weil, and Dostoyevsky were mad. All viewed humanity much as a child might view his father - glorious, courageous, full of integrity and promise. Yet, all eventually would grow disillusioned with the fact that man (or humanity if you will) fell far short of their expectation, a common lament that children everywhere often simply grow to accept about their fathers.  Not these madmen. These idealists. They who would dare to snub their noses at wounded resignation. Their madness was a demand that their father fulfill his destiny. That he rise above the mediocre, the trite, and the banal in order to brave the heights of that which is excellent within him. In other words, these nobles would not let him sleep, delighted with himself and at ease with only the insignificant achievements that have previously sustained him. They were adamant, in some cases even downright incensed, that he claim his proper place in the universe, rather than simply inherit the laurels of his greatest ancestors and feed upon the somewhat naïve admiration of his children. These nobles would be of the sort that Socrates would term ‘gadflies,' pestering humanity, rousing it from its slumber, a constant reminder that that which it has become is not enough.