Is complete lack of insight required for the definition of a delusion?

Most of my positive symptoms are in the range of what I would call are delusions. For instance a few days ago I threw out a cd I found on the street years earlier because I thought it had bad voodoo magic. I was telling my CPN about it - I told him I thought it had “bad vibes” but then went on to tell him that on retrospect this was very unlikely to be the case.

My nurse said this is insight and that it can mean a better overall outcome. But at the time I totally thought the cd was cursed and believed this enough to remove it from my house. Only later could I assess my actions as being a bit weird.

Are ideas only delusions if we are never able to challenge them or are delusions more of a spur of the moment, in the present, type of thing?

I threw out my bibles cuz I thought they had been possessed by demons or the devil.

I have very little insight when engulfed in a delusion, this recent one was the closest to acutely psychotic I’ve been since last in hospital (5 years ago, I’ve been very ill in between but this topped all of them). I’m zoning now how odd I behaved and sounded, but I was utterly terrified for my life and then desperate to end it myself but that has passed after making a promise to my mum I ouldnt. I Can sometimes feel them coming, I feel an overwhelming feeling that something bad is going to happen and then can quickly become lost. I’m wishing I can learn to identify warning signs more. However delusions are defence mechanisms, they’re there as a protection mechanism for me, I feel scared and under threat or things from my past surface, and then I start to come up with other conclusions that protect me from the truth of myself. Even though it’s not very healthy it’s how I work.

i think this is just how I’m going to work. I need to develop better and quicker ways of coming out of it before I become a risk. I wish you luck, this is a major step!

Go steady,

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I think insight is the tool we use to fight our delusions, and over time, we become better at using it. When I have delusions, I am usually in panic mode, and unable to think clearly, but if I talk to someone else about my thoughts, they are usually able to help talk me down into a rational state of mind. Then I can see how ridiculous my delusions are. It sounds like you are able to do that on your own, which is awesome. Hopefully one day I will be able to do that too.

None of my delusions would yield to reason while I had them. Medication was necessary for me to get over them. It seems hard to me for a person to have delusions and also have insight to them. Maybe if the person looked at his delusions as hypothetical. There are some things going on in my life right now that I wish were delusions.

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What is going on in your life? Anything you want to talk about, or would you rather keep it private?

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I believed I was Jesus for years. There was reason…my name starts with J, I’m half Jewish, and a lot of other coincidences. I believed people had told me I was Jesus. I believed my life was on a path chosen by God. I felt I was reasonable and still think I was even though I don’t think I’m Jesus anymore. I believe it was God’s way of making my life tough for me by making me believe I was Jesus. Part of this struggle of life for me and a testament of wretchedness. Maybe some part of the quote “You gotta go through hell before you get to heaven.” Maybe this is all schizophrenic delusion and there isn’t a heaven or an omnipotent God but I believe there is. Although I’m starting to enjoy life on earth so…idk, my delusions were/are pretty narcissistic but I don’t think I was out reason, although reason has helped me get rid of my delusions…I don’t think I had ZERO insight when I was delusional. Although there were points in time I had little to no insight, it was september of 2013 I started gaining insight and it wasn’t until recently I stopped believing I was Jesus.


Not much going on in my life. Been a bit stressed because of the UK elections. A right wing party gained a majority and I am pretty sure they are going to cut welfare. Am afraid I will end up homeless.

But over the last few days I have kind of come to the conclusion that there is no point worrying about matters you have no control over. I am just going to have to adapt to a reduced budget so I am being careful with my money.

Have got a new pdoc as well. Here in the UK you just get the nhs doctor who covers your area (have no money to go private). He is very different to my old doc who I thought was great. I guess we just have to get used to one and other - lay are agendas on the table.

I think that ideas, delusions and to a greater extent beliefs SHOULD be challenged by reason.

There is a lot to be said for practicality.

Delusions can be very hard to kill. Sometimes I have to just live with them and face them later while finishing whatever I am doing when they hit me. Like when I am having a conversation with someone and I think it’s being recorded and shown to people because I am highly functioning and a case study. It’s ■■■■ on a stick.

Then I grab onto something real like knowledge or athletics and just do something real like learn or build skills or my body. I’m into lifting and Krav Maga. I’m also a seriously good student but that’s just been there all along, I was very smart when this illness hit me. I’m not 100% of what I used to be at all but I try and do fairly well, actually given what I have I do a little unbelievably well.

For now I want to keep it private.

i think insight into your condition could help prevent delusions and delusional behaviours i think certain deep rooted believfs may still be present tho.

I think this is a very good question. Classically a delusion required complete lack of insight but IRL I am not sure that is always true.
For example how do you define someone who has weird/irrational thoughts that persist for some time despite some ability to reality test them(accepting they may be false doesn’t necessarily make them go away quickly)?
I would say there are degrees of insight and that people with some insight may be better at keeping delusional thoughts to themselves whereas those with little insight will be more likely to come straight out with the delusional thought.

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Insight into one’s mental state …will not help unless you are right THERE To experience it in its entirety.

insight into my illness has helped me, i am more able to identify warning signs and things now that i know what it is that is happening.

Having bad vibe from something…look for a reason why…do you not often get answers to your questions that satisfy you? Maybe the answers don’t answer everything you’re wondering? Who knows? Or maybe if you realize there was no source than you could say it was a delusion because it was without a true cause, just something fleeting that you had to put a reason to/ You know that’s not unnatural, that’s a normal in the human condition. Schizophrenia itself is a human condition.

People who tend to think a lack of insight is required for a belief to be a delusion typically hold that delusions are false beliefs. Insight into its falsity, combined with the assumed rationality that excludes contradictory beliefs, would then amount to us giving up the false belief. So on this view, insight into a delusion’s falsity will lead a rational person to no longer adhere to the delusion. (Rational here typically means having consistent beliefs - even though they may be uncommon).

However, there is quite some literature on the question of what a delusion is best described to be. Most hold that delusions are typically uncommon beliefs. But not everyone subscribes to the idea that they are necessarily false beliefs. Some prefer to think of delusions as unjustified beliefs - which may turn out to be true. However, if you do not come to your beliefs through adequate justification, they are of course likely to turn out to be false. Schizophrenics can sometimes give justification for our delusions, but it has been observed that these are typically circular and tend to assume the consequent.

On this second view, it is less clear what ‘insight’ amounts to. Insight into the lack of justification? There are many beliefs we hold as firmly as anything without having justification for them. But these are typically shared and accepted among the members of our community. Maybe then insight into both the unusual character of the belief and the lack of justification for it. Would that be enough to destroy the power of the delusion? I think only if one is motivated to belong to a community. A solipsist has no need to be worried about the unusual character of his beliefs. And I think there are quite some solipsistic trends to be observed in many cases of schizophrenia.

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I’ve been hearing a lot about the UK elections. How long will they take to implement their new changes? From what I’ve heard, it is really unlikely they will actually cut funding, but I am not even remotely well-educated on the subject.

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They have to cut the welfare budget by 12 billion by 2018. So there are cuts to come. In response to this I am not renewing contracts with phone companies etc so I can cut my losses easily if needed.

Nothing wrong with calling it a delusion of grandeur… I don’t think it’s narcissistic
Unless delusions of persecution are insecure - which is clearly not cut and dried
I think you could judge yourself as a Christian and actually you should forgive yourself a bit more