Shakespeare viewed the entire world as “out of its ever-loving gourd” mad. Thus he would describe life itself as a “tale told by an idiot” as he was a keen observer of the human predicament and was bewildered by what he saw. Therefore in Hamlet, he lamented, in so many words, “Why bother” in the first place, why “toil and sweat under a weary life” when one could take exit with a “bare bodkin” and escape to golden mansions and streets of gold.
But I think that Shakespeare recognized that he too was mad but took comfort in that he had in his heart “something else” than madness. His plays and sonnets revealed the presence of “the pauser reason” which allowed him self-awareness enough to own his “madness” but to realize he was not totally mad as was so many people around him who lacked that self-awareness.
I’m curious what he would say today about Donald Trump. I think he would have a field day as Trump is about as close to “nothing else but mad” as one can be and merit the label “functional.” But the only thing that gives him this label are his handlers who often appear to be going mad in their desperate effort to make his daily insane behaviors and statements palatable to the press and public.
To illustrate our collective madness, I have read that our world has the resources to eliminate hunger. If so, why don’t we? It seems to me that failure to do so is totally irrational yet you can bet your sweet bippy it will not happen in mine and your lifetime. This is because “reality” grinds relentlessly onward, mindlessly, heartlessly, mechanically like the “tale told by an idiot” toward some unknown end and “chooses” to be oblivious to egregious ills. But I, like the Bard, do affirm that “There is a Divinity that doeth shape our ends, rough hew them how we may.”