Psychs can't find a label for the "North Pond Hermit” "

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ASPartOfMe
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12 Sep 2017, 12:25 am

27 years alone in the woods: How the “North Pond Hermit” survived

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At 20 years old, Christopher Thomas Knight drove to the woods in central Maine and then left his car—and the world as most of us know it. He made himself some crude shelter, he stole food from vacation homes located nearby, he read stolen books and he just . . . lived. Alone. Voluntarily. For 27 years.

Michael Finkel shares Knight’s story in his book called “The Stranger in the Woods” — and he shares it with me, on an episode of “The Lonely Hour.”

“He just felt this sort of very strong tug to leave the world behind,” Finkel says about Knight. “He abandoned his car, which is a pretty robust statement that this wasn’t just a whim, and then the reason why he stayed is because he liked it. He really—despite the suffering, despite the cold weather, despite not lighting a fire—he really found a deep sense of satisfaction and contentment. He felt more content to be by himself in the woods than he ever felt outside of society, and that’s the reason why he kept staying.”

It’s easy to assume that Knight may have had a screw loose, or that he’d endured some kind of trauma, but Finkel found no easy answer for Knight’s mysterious behavior: “Almost all the experts said you could never put a label of autism or autism spectrum disorder on Chris Knight. His ability to plan ahead, his ability to survive completely on his own is almost unheard of. So they rejected Asperger’s and then Schizoid Personality Disorder. There were many reasons why no label fit him. He’s almost an outlier in every way, shape, and form.”


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EzraS
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12 Sep 2017, 5:13 am

There was another guy who lived alone by choice in the wilderness for over 30 years. This guy in no way came off as having a screw loose. But could've had autism I suppose.
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Proenneke


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BirdInFlight
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12 Sep 2017, 8:29 am

A friend of mine, who worked in mental health, actually holds the unexpected opinion (for a mental health professional!) that too many labels are put on people. She feels that most of them are unnecessary and the person is just being. . .who they are.

Why can't this guy just be a guy who was fed up of society -- which, lets face it, can suck in multiple ways -- and just wanted to live off the grid, autonomously, independently, and left alone instead of pestered.

I feel pestered in my life in a city, in a nosy building, with pestering landlords and neighbors. I hate the noise of constant traffic. I hate bills. Tax returns. I get fed up of a lot of the stuff involved in modern life.

If it wasn't for the fact that, sadly, I'm too addicted to a lot of the other stuff of modern life, I'd do what that guy did too.



envirozentinel
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12 Sep 2017, 2:00 pm

Modern life certainly has its pros and cons. I always used to love going on hikes to the wilderness but they were always just a few days. I often thought how I'd love to stay behind!

I'd like to take one very special person with me so we can be hermits together.


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League_Girl
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12 Sep 2017, 2:05 pm

Can't find a label for someone, then it's time to make up a new diagnoses. They just discovered a new disorder.


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I have a quilt of labels. I had a language disorder and a speech disorder. Then communication disorder NOS. My other diagnoses have been Language Processing disorder, dyspraxia, SPD, OCD, ADD, Asperger’s, anxiety disorder, adjustment disorder, anorexia nervosa. My mom’s labels of me are: eating disorder, anorexia, social anxiety, PTSD, just being sensitive and having the victim complex when I was a kid. And of course she says I’m normal and says the only thing I had as a child was language. Huh? I must have been a shitty person then and maybe a difficult child I was who had to be labeled because of incompetent school staff and mean kids who didn’t accept differences and because I was trying to be “normal.” :/

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12 Sep 2017, 4:50 pm

envirozentinel wrote:
I'd like to take one very special person with me so we can be hermits together.


For me that would be my dog.


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DarthMetaKnight
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12 Sep 2017, 6:25 pm

Raptor wrote:
envirozentinel wrote:
I'd like to take one very special person with me so we can be hermits together.


For me that would be my dog.

A post by Raptor made me smile for once. :)


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Darmok
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12 Sep 2017, 6:27 pm

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."

https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quot ... 07665.html


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DarthMetaKnight
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12 Sep 2017, 6:35 pm

Darmok wrote:
"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."

https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quot ... 07665.html


That's pretty deep. I'm not even being sarcastic.

In nature, we are free, but things are also dangerous. The cycle of life and death is everywhere you look.

It's beautiful, so very beautiful.


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248RPA
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12 Sep 2017, 6:58 pm

His label is introversion, but that doesn't mean he has a disorder.


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12 Sep 2017, 7:17 pm

The Lake Isle of Innisfree
W. B. Yeats, 1865 - 1939

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee;
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping
slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket
sings;
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.


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Darmok
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12 Sep 2017, 7:49 pm

Misslizard wrote:
The Lake Isle of Innisfree
W. B. Yeats, 1865 - 1939

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee;
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping
slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket
sings;
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.

One of my wishes is that those dark trees,
So old and firm they scarcely show the breeze,
Were not, as ’twere, the merest mask of gloom,
But stretched away unto the edge of doom.

I should not be withheld but that some day
Into their vastness I should steal away,
Fearless of ever finding open land,
Or highway where the slow wheel pours the sand.

I do not see why I should e’er turn back,
Or those should not set forth upon my track
To overtake me, who should miss me here
And long to know if still I held them dear.

They would not find me changed from him they knew—
Only more sure of all I thought was true.


http://www.bartleby.com/117/1.html


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12 Sep 2017, 9:27 pm

The Peace of Wild Things
Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives might be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.


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Darmok
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12 Sep 2017, 10:19 pm

Misslizard wrote:
The Peace of Wild Things
Wendell Berry

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives might be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
The Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
It moves us not.--Great God! I'd rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.


http://www.bartleby.com/145/ww317.html


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the_phoenix
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12 Sep 2017, 10:59 pm

As an artist, I can't find a label either ... but a picture, or photo, is worth a thousand words.
Here are some of my fine art photos of my favorite woodland retreats, all taken from visits I made to the Hocking Hills of Ohio:

Image

Image

Image

...