Thursday, April 8, 2010

Thought Experiment: The Seer

I am going to tell you the same situation twice, once from an external point of view and again from an internal. Everything stated is true.

A woman sits at a bar murmuring to herself. A guy walks in and sits next to her. He attempts to strike up a conversation.

The woman promptly freaks out, calling him a murderer and screaming for him to get away. The guy, now surprised and flustered, backs off. The woman continues to scream, now yelling at others, telling them to stop this man before he murders again.

The other customers are shocked and do nothing. Seeing that no help is coming, the woman takes it into her own hands. She grabs a knife from behind the bar and goes at the guy, stabbing him over and over, until the other customers managed to restrain her.

She had been born with a gift to be able to see the future. This future sight had manifested as voices in her head. They talked to her, telling her things throughout the day and she thanked them whenever they helped her avoid something unpleasant. Sometimes she'd even strike up a conversions with the beings in her head over some drinks.

Which is what they had been doing when the guy sat next to her at the bar. Her bodiless companions quickly told her that the guy planned on drugging her and killing her later that night, and that she had to get away as quickly as possible.

She might have over reacted just a touch, calling him a murderer, but she had panicked. The voices had always been right before and if they told her to get away from something or she'd die, she did as she was told.

After being called a murderer, the guy backed off. Relief shot through her until her companions told her the obvious, if he wasn't targeting her, then he would target another innocent girl. She had to stop him, before he got away and killed someone.

Turning to the other customers for help, she screamed at them. Trying franticly to get them to stop the murdering man before he got away. Why were they just staring at her? Why wouldn't they help?

She looked around quickly, her eyes landing on the knife behind the bar. Taking it up she rushed him. He had to be stopped.

She thrust the knife into him, not stopping until she was pulled away.

Here's the list of symptoms the woman exibits from the external view:
  • Auditory Hallucinations (Hearing Voices)
  • Delusions (He's going to murder me)
  • Paranoia

From the outside this looks like an obvious Schizophrenic case.

But we must remember, as I stated earlier, all facts are true. In other words, the voices in her head really can predict the future. Therefore, the guy was going to kill her and he was going to kill someone else if he wasn't stopped.

This being so, here are the questions I would like you to try to answer...
  • Is she schizophrenic?
  • If not, what is she?