- Mental Health
Finding the good in all things
Talented and Genius
Talent, Genius, Gift and Pain,
And so it has been said many times that we should always try to find the good in everything. Sometimes it may be impossible to find good in things we simply can not understand or comprehend. I have always tried to see the good in all things and I do admit sometimes that is not so easy to do. I have even questioned God as to why mankind and nature has a destructive side and why there is so much pain and suffering in the world. I have always been very compassionate in my views and always felt that we should learn to find peace and happiness in our life and try to be the absolute best we can be. I have heard the saying "No man is an island" many times and I have grown to understand it a bit more each time I hear it as I get older and wiser. It is very true that we should never feel alone. We need to always find acceptance and happiness and we need to establish close bonds with our family and valuable and meaningful friendships with those special people who touch us in our life. When we feel alone that is the time we need to find the company of family and friends and speak our feelings and thoughts. Life is too short and before you know it the time has passed us by and we feel as if we have missed out on so much. Life is a gift and we have to learn to adapt to the many challenges we face and live with the knowledge, inner strength, courage and company of family and friends that are essential in our life.
I often wondered what it would be like if we only experienced happy and joyous things in our life. Is it that to have balance in our life we have to experience both good and bad and we have to try to put a spin on the bad to try to take some good from it? I just don't understand sometimes why there has to be such tragedy in life.
William Shakespeare certainly knew how to express that theme in his writings. I have always enjoyed reading many of his classics and have learned a lot from his well known works such as Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, Macbeth, Julius Caesar and Othello. I often wondered how someone could be so gifted and touch so many with his vision and his words. He was truly blessed with a talent of extraordinary heights that no one else could ever get close to. All his works have been interpreted by so many throughout the world and in each generation and though he came from a far different generation back to the 1500 - 1600's his works are an integral part of our everyday life and are taught in every classroom in every country.
The irony of being a genius for some is that there is a price to pay for it as they are tortured in their thoughts and how they are perceived. They span the annals of time and some are well known and some obscure. Some come to mind immediately and others were never truly known. In the art world the most well known tortured genius was Vincent Van Gogh who lived a painful life filled with both brilliance and heartbreak and he had a truly wonderful gift that touches us all through his artwork. The sad reality of Vincent Van Gogh was that despite his amazing talent and his wonderful works of art he was not well known in his life and he battled his demons suffering from mental illness. His genius and talent seemed to manifest later in his life as he displayed his artistic talents in his late 20's. It was not until after his death that he gained notoriety. The world lost a great talent who suffered as a tortured genius and died at the young age of 37.
In the Music world born into an earlier generation and in the beautiful places of Salzberg and Vienna, Austria was Wolfgang Amadaeus Mozart who was truly a prodigy as a 5 year old who made the world a truly happier and brighter place with his music that began in 1761 when he was just a 5 year old. Though he died in 1791 at the tender age of 35 his music touches the world today as it did when he performed as a young kid to audiences in Austria and throughout Europe.
Three modern day tortured music geniuses that comes to mind are Jim Morrison, Curt Cobain and Michael Jackson. Jim Morrison of the Doors who died in his 20's and was a truly gifted writer, poet, songwriter and singer seemed to be on the fast track and fell into the world of excess succumbing to drug addiction.
Curt Cobain of Nirvana was another genius songwriter and performer who also suffered from drug addiction and depression and died way too soon after exploding onto the music scene. He seemed to not be ready for it and suffered in the process unfortunately.
A child performer who started at the tender age of 4-5 years old was Michael Jackson who touched the world with his music,his kindness, his dedication and his vision. He was one of a kind and though he was misunderstood he truly was a kind and compassionate person who was so very talented and gave all of us a thrill with his music as a child prodigy and as an adult. He lived his life different from most of us but he was a kind, sensitive and caring person who was driven by his music and he did it for his fans. He lived in pain and suffered but he showed courage, heart and dedication to his work out of love for his music and his fans.
One of my favorite literary geniuses who had a way of making you feel his pain through his writing and who painted a Gothic and dark vision with a theme of death with his words and his imagery was Edgar Allan Poe. He was very talented and gifted as a writer and poet who had personal struggles and demons in his life. One of his works that I remember reading in my seventh grade English class was Tell Tale Heart which was a very disturbing tale and also a very suspenseful one filled with horror. Edgar Allan Poe served in the military and graduated from West Point and served his country. He decided after serving his time in the military that he would devote his life to his writing. He also died a young man of 40 and was incoherent and seemingly lost at his time of death. It is so very sad what becomes of such wonderfully gifted people who seem to be tormented in life.
I remember as a kid enjoying a tv show that starred Jack Albertson and Freddie Prinze called Chico and the Man. I never missed a show when it aired on Saturday nights and I got to really enjoy the chemistry between both and remember laughing hard because they were so funny. It was one of my favorite shows and I still have visions of watching the shows. I remember when I learned that Freddie had taken his life I was so sad and wondered why someone who had such a wonderful gift would have such troubles to get to that point in their life.
It just goes to show you how vulnerable we truly are and we must always surround ourselves with family, friends and the things we love to do. We have to always look to the good in our lives and hold on to that and make that the very meaning for our existence and survival. Sure I believe we all have to find ways to best deal with our emotions and feelings and always stay strong, focused and happy and most of all always remember that our children learn from us and we need to be there for them and fully commit ourselves to our children's success and happiness.
We must always try our best to look at the good side of things and always strive to find happiness and be our very best in life for it is the only one we have.
Dedicated to my son Matty who inspires me everyday!
Edward D. Iannielli III
Vincent van Gogh
- Starry Starry Night - Understanding the Lyrics to Vincent
A comparison of the lyrics to Don McLean's hit song Vincent (Starry, Starry Night) to Van Gogh's actual Life.