Beers, Clifford - Paranoia strikes
Type of Spiritual Experience
The detectives are a figment of his own imagination
A description of the experience
Clifford Beers – A Mind that found itself
Shortly after going to New York to live, I had explored the Eden Musee. One of the most gruesome of the spectacles which I had seen in its famed Chamber of Horrors was a representation of a gorilla, holding in its arms the gory body of a woman. It was that impression which now revived in my mind. But by a process strictly in accordance with Darwin's theory the Eden Musee gorilla had become a man-in appearance not unlike the beast that had inspired my distorted thought.
This man held a bloody dagger which he repeatedly plunged into the woman's breast. The apparition did not terrify me at all. In fact I found it interesting, for I looked upon it as a contrivance of the detectives. Its purpose I could not divine, but this fact did not trouble me, as I reasoned that no additional criminal charges could make my situation worse than it already was.
For a month or two, "false voices" continued to annoy me. And if there is a hell conducted on the principles of my temporary hell, gossippers will one day wish they had amended strictly to their own business. This is not a confession. I am no gossiper, though I cannot deny that I have occasionally gossipped-a little. And this was my punishment: persons in an adjoining room seemed to be repeating the very same things which I had said of others on these communicative occasions.
I supposed that those whom I had talked about had in some way found me out, and intended now to take their revenge.