On “Schizophrenia”

Chaya Grossberg
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The first time I heard someone labeled schizophrenic I was in Prospect Park, on a walk with my mom. I was about 10 years old. A man was talking to himself and appeared to be house-less and perhaps on drugs. My mom, a very good teacher and explainer of things to me, said, “That man is schizophrenic. That means he can’t tell the difference between what’s inside of himself and what’s outside.” In retrospect, as were many of the things my mom said to me as a child, this seems like a relatively sophisticated and sensitive explanation. I can appreciate her intention, looking back.

My mom studied psychology in the 70’s and gave me a version of the description she had learned. She, like many, assumed herself qualified to diagnose someone schizophrenic after less than a minute of observation. There is no blood test, brain scan or any other reliable diagnostic procedure to diagnose what we call “schizophrenia.” While, of course, anyone who sets foot into a psychiatrist’s office is likely to be suffering in extreme ways, schizophrenia, in fact, does not exist. Meanwhile, it is the mental health label that many people, even skeptics, think is the only real one.

Often times when I mention that it does not exist, I see the light bulbs go on in people’s minds and they become visibly awakened. Their eyes light up, they look relieved, and they have a lot to say! The truth about the man we saw in the park 20 years ago: if he had been given a home, good food and help sobering up, he likely could have seemed “normal.” The truth about getting an actual schizophrenia diagnosis from a psychiatrist is that many people get it either after or during a recreational drug experience, spiritual breakthrough/psychic opening or as a result of stressful and traumatic experiences.

People who tell a psychiatrist they “hear voices” can get the label, regardless of what hearing voices means to them. Prophets, religious people, mediums, and ordinary folk have been hearing voices from beyond since the beginning of recorded history. Nearly all religions document these experiences. Hearing threatening voices is often a result of trauma. In either/any case, there is no cookie cutter “schizophrenia”- everyone who gets the label has a different experience and needs to be seen as an individual; not as a category. This is obvious for nearly every other diagnosis, so why does society, even those radically inclined, have a blind spot about this one?

Since there is no uniform physical basis for this label, giving everyone who receives it a similar class of brain-damaging drugs – neuroleptics – is wrong, and fails to help most people. What it does do, if someone identifies with the label, and their community identifies them with it, is make them a lifelong outcast and sick person – both from the debilitating effects of the drug, and the identification with a label that scares people.

Please, for the sake of humanity, don’t use the word schizophrenic to describe anyone. Tell us what you mean instead – and if you don’t know enough about someone to say what you mean, please just admit it. If you had a bad drug experience or a trauma or heard a voice from beyond, would you want to be ostracized as a schizophrenic? Would you want to be made sick for life?

If we go back to my mother’s definition (which is one of many vague definitions of schizophrenia) – not knowing the difference between what’s inside of ourselves and what’s outside – and look at the things that make life worth living, they all put us in that category. Falling in love, hearing music that enters our heart, having children/giving birth, connecting powerfully with another person in a meeting of the minds, feeling empathy, deeply caring about something, experiencing oneness with nature, are all examples of times when the line between inner and outer reality is blurred. This is how we achieve what we value most in life; connection.

There are extreme cases where the blur between external and internal reality can be torturous, or so strong that one may shut down and disconnect. Let’s remember, though, that everything starts as an impulse to connect – which requires inner and outer realities to merge in our hearts.

Hearing voices from beyond is a cornerstone in my life and is the source of nearly every success I’ve ever had!

Another question that arises is this: Why do we often glorify recreational drugs use but not what we call “schizophrenia?” People often take recreational drugs, whether occasionally or regularly, to experience a more extreme version of merging inner and outer realities – and sometimes receive profound insights from these experiences. I’d venture to guess that we view the “schizophrenic” as alone, dysfunctional, and unable to relate with others. We see how s/he has been ostracized, yet the ostracizing takes place mostly after the diagnosis is given. The diagnosis, in essence, creates the disease. It allows us to simplify the questions in someone’s life and say, “Now we know what’s wrong with them.”  Recreational drug use, on the other hand is more likely to be associated with social life, community and togetherness.

But when we use the label schizophrenic, do we know any more than before? If curiosity about a person closes off, we know less. We also have no potential to learn more. Intelligence is a responsibility and a gift. Using mental health labels puts a dam in the flow of that river and its power to heal and transform us all.

Without these labels we are left in an abyss at times.  We must acknowledge that life is a mystery and our experiences have meaning, even if we don’t know what it is right away.  We must create entirely new language and ways of relating with one another.  This gives us plenty of real work to do in understanding ourselves and others, with an open mind.  Surely as we move away from labels and towards a more honest understanding of life experiences, we will go through many changes and challenges, some of them painful, as we are forced to look at the dark side of the power structures in society, seeing that the Emperor has no clothes.  The better ways may not be clear yet, but acknowledging this with humility would be a good step.  Acting as if we know everything is a placebo sort of pseudo-confidence that our culture seems to favor.

49 COMMENTS

  1. I spent one grad course this past semester focused on the history of the development of the diagnostic entity “schizophrenia”. Where it came from and how we got to our present-day criteria…I concluded that it is bogus – and really, a tragedy of devastating proportions.
    I applaud your input!!

    • “a tragedy of devastating proportions”. So true. This is what people who don’t understand the critical psychiatry / alternatives to psychiatry / survivor of psychiatry movement need to see. Most of us don’t believe psychiatry is some ‘conspiracy’, it’s just a grand mistake. A vast, grand, epic, mistaken interpretation of human problems. Vast and grand like war and slavery are vast and grand. Huge. One of the kinds of mistakes, or ideologies, that straddles the course of centuries of human history. Devastating proportions indeed. It’s huge. Sadly, living as a nonbeliever, is like being a nonbeliever in the middle ages. Very lonely, very dangerous, and you can be kidnapped off the street and forcibly converted into this pseudo-medical secular religion at any given moment, because the humans that really believe in psychiatry’s tenets, believe in them with such fanaticism, that they are willing to initiate violence against strangers to force their beliefs on others. This is what forcing psychiatry on people by law is, the blind assumption of the majority, the mob, that because they believe troubling/strange/unusual behaviors/crises/beliefs are ‘brain diseases’, that they have the right to authorize government to enter the brains of any man, woman and child in society by force (if they deem it necessary). At the hard center of government psychiatry, the true fanatics lie. And like a radical Islamist willing to blast ball bearings and fire into the bodies of strangers because of their fanatical beliefs, any forced psychiatry state hospital perp, can chillingly sleep like a baby after entering the bodies of unwilling strangers. It’s a very dangerous belief system and its an epic tragedy that it is essentially illegal not to believe in it. It is the official state religion, hiding in plain sight, camouflaged as a sleek, prestigious science. If there is any justice in the world, any self-correcting mechanisms in the course of human history, humanity will come to remember this belief system of psychiatry with shame, out of basic human decency there will come a time when government and psychiatry will be separated like religion and state, and a memorial and a museum to the dead and diminished will be established in every major city. Literally millions of people have lost the right to own their own body over the last couple hundred years, on the altar of psychiatry’s reductionist dehumanizing quackery. I fear there are millions of lives left to be destroyed or diminished before enough people wake up to enable the snake to be de-fanged. It’s a noble and worthy cause, to make any contribution that stops the bleeding.

      • Furthermore, I think in the final analysis arguably the most terrifying thing about the psychiatric belief system is that it shows us just how easily human beings can behave in inhuman ways toward their fellow human beings, how handily and readily various groups can be thrown out of the human race. The strongest bonds, forged between parents and children, can be severed in an instant, with an ‘argument from authority’ pre-packaged in pseudoscientific prestige. Parents can love their children and be close to them, and with the stroke of a shrink’s pen, alienated from them for life, dehumanizing them as walking ‘brain diseases’ unworthy of the basic human right to say no to strangers putting things in their bodies against their will. Psychiatry shows us the propensity for scapegoating, othering, and dehumanization that exists within us all. If there is one thing the experiences that get labeled ‘mental illness’ taught me, it was that people see what they want to see, believe what they want to believe. The danger lies in those believing they are ‘helping’ having unfettered forced access to the bodies of strangers, or the ghoulish, horrific lobbying of the forced drugging lobby, a baying mob of demagogues intent on ‘eliminating barriers’ to forcing their beliefs and drugs into the bodies of anyone they see fit to target, and I’m certain it never even crosses their mind that they are doing anything other than what’s ‘right and just’.

        If psychiatry had never happened to me, I’d have probably kept believing this sort of fanaticism was a thing of the 19th or 20th centuries, that we were living through some ultra civilized era where the real nasty things in human history had been dealt with and were over. We are right in the middle of something real nasty with psychiatry. Time will tell if humanity can course correct as it has done in the past. I know I will probably never live the glorious day when the majority comes to our rescue and liberates us from this threat, when the majority retches at the thought of assaulting the brain of another human being with toxic drugs, and indoctrinating an impressionable young person with a forced conversion into a quackery that tells them they have no future, that they are destined to be ‘lifelong brain diseases’ unworthy of basic rights. But maybe someday, somewhere, there will be people who no longer have to live under threat of being psychiatrized. They will be lucky people. I think of all the millions of people shunted off, thrown out of the human race, relegated to asylums in centuries past, or a pariah status and a series of brutal ‘hospitalizations’ in our time, and the mobs cheering it on, and sometimes I don’t even want to get out of bed or go outside. The quacks call this a ‘negative symptom’ and blame… you guessed it, the brain.

        • I am glad to see yet another commenter point out that psychiatry has become a religion, and yes, nonbelievers are almost in the position a nonbeliever would have been in the Middle Ages. People believe in psychiatry’s claims even though their own experience, the evidence of their own senses, tells them otherwise. Isn’t this pretty much the definition of a delusion? And if so, doesn’t it mean that the fanatic believers in psychiatry are “mentally ill”?

  2. Chaya,

    This blog post on the “schizophrenia” label is very well written. I agree with everything you say in it.

    Of course, as it is a relatively short piece, you may not be covering *every* base, on this topic. (That’s quite understandable.)

    One aspect of the topic, that probably should be addressed, regards these concepts of ‘self-control’ and ‘free will’ …and the seeming potentials for violence (against oneself or others…) and/or ‘just’ a seeming/potential inability to provide the most basic sorts of care for oneself.

    Staunch civil libertarians (such as I consider myself to be) tend to oppose the legal powers that are granted to psychiatrists, which give psychiatrists the ‘right’ to ‘treat’ such individuals against their will.

    Yet, most psychiatrists argue that they need such powers, to ‘help’ such individuals.

    Really, in practice, that ‘help’ is largely about controlling people who supposedly cannot control themselves, due to supposed “mental illness” and/or supposed “mental disorders” (such as supposed “schizophrenia”).

    With those issues in mind, I’d like to suggest an answer to a certain question you raise.

    You write,

    Why do we often glorify recreational drugs use but not what we call “schizophrenia?” People often take recreational drugs, whether occasionally or regularly, to experience a more extreme version of merging inner and outer realities – and sometimes receive profound insights from these experiences. I’d venture to guess that we view the “schizophrenic” as alone, dysfunctional, and unable to relate with others. We see how s/he has been ostracized, yet the ostracizing takes place mostly after the diagnosis is given. The diagnosis, in essence, creates the disease. It allows us to simplify the questions in someone’s life and say, “Now we know what’s wrong with them.” Recreational drug use, on the other hand is more likely to be associated with social life, community and togetherness.

    I believe the concept of “schizophrenia” tends, quite often, to be associated with a presumed complete and utter, ‘total’ (or, ‘near-total’) loss of self-control over ones own mind (and, then, possibly, also… loss of control over ones own outward behaviors).

    In fact, when some people refer to ‘extreme’ states of mind, they may be referring to that sort of experience. (And, that is why I won’t refer to myself as experiencing ‘extreme’ states.)

    Of course, all this is not to say that I believe that everyone who’s been tagged with the “schizophrenia” label has experienced such seemingly total or near-total loss of self-control… (nor that I believe everyone’s report of an ‘extreme state’ entails such loss of self-control).

    Surely, many who’ve been labeled that way never experienced such total or near-total loss of self-control; and, some never experienced it before their lives were turned over to psychiatrists and psychiatric drug ‘treatments’ (i.e., such ‘treatment’ very often creates and/or exacerbates a loss of self-control); however, I do believe that some people have, before coming to psychiatry, wound up in the midst of losing some really significant degree of control over their own minds (and, perhaps, have lost some amount of control over their outward behaviors, too), such that they do feel really feel quite unusually ‘out-of-control’ of their own lives.

    Such states of being may be mere ‘extreme’ states of what many or most others have experienced, at times.

    But, some people do wind up seemingly ‘stuck’ in such ‘extreme’ states; and, some pass in and out of such states, at seemingly random intervals.

    So…

    At least, some proportion of those who’ve received that “schizophrenia” label have experienced a total or near-total loss of self-control, prior to being introduced to psychiatry.

    Meanwhile, the concept of “recreational drug use” (as opposed to presumed “drug addictions,” which often do not develop, as a result of using “recreational drugs”) tends to suggest some certain amount of maintenance, of self-control.

    One who’s ‘just’ occasionally ‘losing ones mind’ to “recreational drugs” is ostensibly choosing to create what s/he knows to be a very temporary state of relative ‘loss of control’ in his/her own mind.

    And, like you say, “Recreational drug use […] is more likely to be associated with social life, community and togetherness.”

    Hence, the ‘recreational drug user’ isn’t going to be widely and automatically perceived as requiring professional help.

    Respectfully,

    ~Jonah

    P.S. — There were times, in the past, that I’d occasionally describe my ‘breakdown/breakthrough’ experiences (which were experiences in my early twenties) as having included certain “extreme states”; however, I do not describe those experiences in such terms anymore… as I’ve realized, that: In the minds of many people, the term “extreme states” implies ‘totally out-of-control’.

  3. Chaya,

    Great post!

    I especially enjoyed these three statements of yours:

    “… everyone who gets the label has a different experience and needs to be seen as an individual; not as a category.”

    “The diagnosis, in essence, creates the disease.”

    “We must create entirely new language and ways of relating with one another.”

    Yes, yes, yes!

    Duane

    • “We must create entirely new language…”

      Duane,

      I agree that Chaya has offered a great post here.

      (Hopefully, these comments I’ve offered do not distract from her many fine points.)

      But, do we need to create a new language?

      Is that a ‘must’ — really?

      I’m not so sure; it seems to me, there’s a lot of useful language that already exists, to explain all sorts of experiences, but it’s been sidelined by terms that profit pharma-psychiatrists (who, as we know, aim to ‘treat’ effects whilst offering short shrift to causes).

      Freud has been thoroughly trounced and discredited, many times over, by various commenters, on this website; but, is there nothing worth salvaging from any of the ‘psychodynamic’ theories?

      See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Psychodynamic_psychotherapy

      At the very least, it seems to me that the concept of “neurosis” could be useful (IMO, it was, perhaps, best defined by Karen Horney; see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neurosis#Horney.27s_theory ); but, it went out of style, upon being nixed by the DSM III committee.

      On the other hand, I think, one can do well, sticking to utterly ‘plain-speaking’ language.

      I.e., maybe one ‘just’ needs a way to share his/her experiences, in a ‘safe’ space, with no reference whatsoever to any ‘mental health’ terms, of any kind?

      Respectfully,

      ~Jonah

  4. Anonymous, you said: The UK has just, predictably, launched efforts to censor the internet, one of their targets is any site that in the government’s determination ‘promotes’ so called ‘self harm’.

    This is terrifying. Can you point me to a link? I’d like to read about it.

    • https://www.openrightsgroup.org/blog/2013/sleepwalking-into-censorship

      This is a link explaining the ‘mental health’ related censorship that awaits the voters of the UK.

      Of course, it must be understood that the UK ‘conservative’ government is just implementing the ideology of US ideologue and Obama administration official Cass Sunstein, whose 2008 book about ‘nudge’ politics has naturally inspired the UK authoritarians. It’s decision engineering, his other books ‘Democracy and the Problem of Free Speech’ calls for a rewriting of the 1st amendment in line with what he thinks it should be.

      His ‘choice architecture’ ideology, should terrify anyone who cares about liberty. Currently the British Prime Minister is using Sunstein’s thought to be the ‘architect’ of what the Britons see on the internet.

      Another master of the universe from academia seeking to change ‘change peoples behavior’.

      It’s no surprise that the first country to implement Sunstein’s policy is a country with far less liberty than his native USA, the UK.

      • Yeah, I’ve seen that list of things to block earlier. It seems to include lots of sites with ‘wrong’ information, such as web forums, anorexia and eating disorder websites, esoteric material and web blocking circumvention tools. Maybe with time more enlightened people will start to move to other kind of systems where there’s less control, such as Tor networks.

        • Hermes,
          I did some signals intelligence work at one time and eventually realized through a study of Gurdjieff that “The biggest secret is that there is no secret.” Encrypting communications only attracts attention to them (and that may well be the source’s intent). However, I moved to Linux in 1998 because I value the ability to throw a few stones at stray dogs defecating on my lawn, and I can’t do that from a glass house.

          http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/internet-security/10225735/Users-of-darknet-websites-advised-to-dump-Windows.html

          “The attack on Sunday coincided with a report in the Irish Independent that Eric Eoin Marques, the man believed to be behind Freedom Hosting, had been arrested and accused by the FBI of being “the largest facilitator of child porn on the planet”.

          Marques faces allegations that he aided and abetted a conspiracy to advertise material showing the abuse of children, and US authorities are reportedly seeking his extradition on four charges.

          Given the timing, many people have speculated that the JavaScript code was inserted by investigators with the FBI, aiming to round up users of illegal child abuse sites believed to be hosted by Freedom Hosting.

          Some have even suggested that US authorities are involved in the sting, with researchers from Baneki Privacy Labs and VPN provider Cryptocloud claiming to have traced the source of the Tor breach back to the US National Security Agency (NSA).”

          • Yeah, I know that encrypting information can make you more suspect. Encrypting information can mean that they’ll keep it indefinitely, until they can maybe one day decrypt it. I read about this thing you posted about the day after I posted my comment. I personally haven’t been overly secret or concerned about my identity, though I’m not either directly revealing it all in public Facebook profile at this time, etc. I do encrypt my computers and backup drives, and also more sensitive data that I have in “cloud” such as Dropbox, but that’s more to block script-kiddies than NSA, etc.

          • “Some have even suggested that US authorities are involved in the sting…”

            Heh Heh.

            I’m partly insane and part of how I handle that is studying pornography. I actually study it, from time to time, looking for patterns and themes in popular interests, behaviors, etc.. I actually watched an actual gang rape – no doubt in my mind that what was staged as a “gang bang” turned out to be a teenage girl being gang RAPED. They had to TELL HER to smile, when it was all done, because … she wasn’t smiling. I took a screen shot of the tears and pain in her eyes, that she was holding. When commanded to smile, she did.

            Anyway, sexuality is an ENORMOUS, HUGE, GARGANTUAN – probably even CORE ELEMENT – in plenty of “mental” / “psychological” / “behavioral” conditions. I know insanity to be a SEXUAL disease, and I’d really like to see people catch up to speed on that FACT.

            Here’s another fantastic fact:

            18 U.S.C. 2257

            OF COURSE the United States was involved.

      • Choice architecture is not an ideology, it is a reality. Being terrified by it and not acknowledging its existence and its inevitability is sticking one’s head in the sand. Demonizing choice architecture is like declaring nuclear physics evil because it paved the way to the atomic bomb.

        That there are imposters posing as scientists – and fortunately some of the prominent ones are denounced on this website – does not invalidate science.

        Choice architecture technology reminds me a lot of advertizing technology. I don’t like commercials – on the other hand I would not put a gag order on the fishmonger shouting “Fish for sale!”

        The world is not black and white.

  5. I won’t define what science is other than describe it as one of the pillars of western culture. But, in the heat of the moment, I made up the word anti-science and if it already exists I’m not sure what it means. Some worldviews maintain that there’s nothing wrong with science but that it misses the point, that science will never answer many fundamental questions in life. For those who believe that science will eventually yield the answers to all questions, such attitudes could be called anti-science. I definitely don’t belong to the group whose ultimate faith is in science, so I do create some confusion by using the word anti-science.

    Remainder of Comment Removed
    • Chaya, let me explain more.

      If someone calls me anti-psychiatry, it gives me deep satisfaction because I know it comes from someone who believes established psychiatry has or will have all the answers. I happen to believe it has no answers and I’m not holding my breath. But that’s beside the point.
      Likewise if somebody calls me anti-science in the sense I suggest in my previous comment. The difference being that science gets some things right. In that context I say that science can do harm and anti-science can do good.
      Equating good morals to good science or bad morals to bad science is a mistake.

  6. I was cured of Schizophrenia. I have no problem at all with the label itself in fact I can extend the meaning more precisely. The symptoms listed under the DSM are a very good classification.
    It is not the label itself to describe common symptoms that is a problem, it is how the label is used.
    I have heard nowadays psychiatrists take you into a room and tell you you have SZ like it is a death sentence and tell you you will have to be on meds for the rest of your life. This is misuse of a label.
    I am from the old days probably in a more enlightened place (but not today) , this was never done to me. ‘They’ never even told me my label, I just read it on the forms they foolishly gave me to transport to the social assistance-and it meant nothing to me. So this encouraged identity sensitivity was never done to me. I never spent one second thinking about the horror of ‘being’ a SZ.
    The most significant reason for that is my SZ was successful, I was mind washed by psychosis and fear, the last of my social identity was purged. Being in worlds where the basic reality of my senses was in doubt – why should I care about the label of things when the lesson of dis-identification from labels was so thorough? Psychosis is a great cure to learn to separate the idea of labels from the things themselves. One can do this by dropping LSD as well – its one of the pillars of the old ’60’s hippie ideology.

    This is one of the benefits of SZ the de-structural-ization of the ego , to breakdown the old system to prepare for the new system. I understood this after the fact and I understand this process as part of SZ.

    No, I want ‘them’ to use the label SZ. They have to write something on the folders and the label describes common behavioral patterns that stem form a specific emotional structural problem – that is all it is not the other stuff which is piggy backed onto it. ..

    I have to account for a gap of 30 years in my life – “traveling in Europe” doesn’t cover it. Neither does “connecting’ with the universe.

    I want them to use the label and I wnat them to acknowledge that I am cured, that I am transformed , That I resolved this problem such that my personality was only restructured and in fact I became fully emotionally alive.
    I am not acknowledged, I am ignored and denied. I do not exist, I never existed. And now strangely enough (actually not strangely, it’s par) the counter culture community wishes to deny my existence as well.
    Cure,fix, transform, challenge , change, restructure, solve, , get optimized.. These words and others like them, both the bio-med industry and the counter culture do not wish to use. It is because in my growing opinion now because they have no experience in and thus no ability to use a paradigm of success. These entities seem to be locked up in deadly battle with each other, each ignoring the obvious – which is just simply be successful – start assisting cure instead of encouraging failure.

    No my problem with SZ was not the label nor the typical dysfunction that I had described by that label but the fact that I was cured. My social identity was objectively damaged since SZ was declared an incurable biological ‘disease’ when it was so obviously a emotionally dysfunctional condition and curable for myself and I believe for many others.
    ..
    Life may be a mystery but that is irrelevant. What is important is for SZ people or anyone with a mental illness to clearly define their troubles and work on them, through mediation, therapy whatever. Mental illnesses are problems of consciousness and can only be resolved by the application of conscious effort be it the ‘zen of no mind’ or ‘the principle of the application of brute confrontatative force’.

    If you refuse to define mental illness , you cannot define mental wellness and there is an objective reality to both these things, the weller than well fly jet planes, write books, go into combat, get on the board of directors -as opposed to taking a respite in a cracked up state whether it is a place run by zen monks or Bio-med pill-pushers.
    Life is concrete not abstract philosophy.

    Using a label is not the same thing as treating people like labels and also the label SZ can be used without any application of the theory of brain disease and use of psychotropics. These are two separate issues.

    To clarify a little more, I completely agree with the diagnostic of SZ (which I went to my local SZ Society and studied, noting that a Pharma company had collated the DSM info and printed the materials adding their own conclusion that SZ was a ‘chemical imbalance’ – used by this supposedly altruistic society – but even that is no never-mind). I see this definition as precise pertaining for the most part to a fairly common type of emotional problem and I see it as extremely useful. And it is useful to me in identifying others who have problems like I did an knowing an approach to help them. Now this definition should be understand in that I see all those symptoms as psycho-social with emotional roots and understand the curative or transformational process as psycho-social.
    So in other words I take the same set of observations as the Bio-Med Psychs and see them all through the light of human experience – not chemistry. It’s a human psychology that requires a more fundamental understanding of psychological processes than the typical human has.
    The cure of course for SZ is emotion.. wonderful emotion , invigorating rage, oceans of soothing depression, golden heavens of sadness.
    That might sound like a different vision of health than is commonalty heard, it’s strange but both the Bio-Med industry and the common mental wellness community have the same thing in common – they are running the wrong direction.
    SZ need drugs to help them experience emotions not avoid them..but yeah, it’s not that straightforward – I am just making a point.
    All SZ have fear and anxiety to the deepest level – it’s the driving engine of SZ positive symptoms. ..But drug away the SZ’s fear and you take away everything the person is and cut them down. The positive symptoms occur when the old fragile personality finally fails in it’s desperate attempts to manage and block impending emotional conflict.

    Yes, Bio-med psychiatrists are unwitting monsters ignorant of basic human psychological processes and murdering personalities by the millions but really so what? . in terms of curing ourselves they are irrelevant – complaining about hem is advancement Zero or perhaps getting back to Zero for the negative. If people can use them to get some emergency respite and the get away form them it’s not that bad – but it is getting harder to get away from them nowadays.
    Nevertheless,they are not the problem, and neither are labels.

    We identify problems work on them and solve them and in this case we work on problems of ourselves . Part of the lessons to SZ is that the SZ’s world cracks entirely forcing the SZ to 100 percnet accept they have self-problems and motivate themselves to work on them with full commitment.
    Cure for this condition cannot be partial, – it is not like quitting smoking and one is still the same – one’s basic self changes – this doesn’t happen without full acceptance of a need to change.

    In this case , it is completely correct we can’t work on a label – in all the work I did to transform myself I never once thought about any label.
    ..
    It is equally not useful to become fixated on the misuse of labels. In this case you are still using the label just on the reverse side of it. This is still empowering Bio-med psychiatry. It’s defining oneself in terms of opposition to something – which is a false self.
    ..
    Complaining about the misuse of the label however is completely valid – dumping the label itself is not constructive

    The best way of understanding human problems is to have paradigms that include others understanding not exclude them and place yourself at war with them . R.D Laing’s paradigm is completely compatible with using the label SZ in it’s purely diagnostic form.

    The label SZ does not denote a disease – this is an add on- an interpretation of the symptoms observed commonly to define a type- SZ denotes standards symptoms of a very specific type of psychological emotional problem.

    Sure ,when we use the label SZ, we know more than from absolute zero – I find out right away form experience, the label is not irrelevant – just because the Bio-med industry misuses it is not my problem – is their problem.

    I don’t like the approach to try to deny the existence of mental illness, it is not resilient, nor positive goal oriented – you are defining yourself and others out of existence. It really looks like simply trying to soothe people who feel hurt at the expense of being realistic and encourages them to engage in denial that they have a problem to winch they must exert efforts.It looks like denial and blaming others for one’s feelings. And maybe a request – ‘be nice to be’ which is ok but doing this way is not learning to communicate effectively.

    Taking it out on the psychiatrists is an easy displacement – they are mindless monsters but this is not curative for SZ.

    The best way to refute Bio-med psychiatry is to take 100 people that they consider incurable and hopefully assist fifty percent of them to be cured. Just one cure destroys their entire paradigm of failure.

    I experienced horrifying states of madness and at one time slit both my wrists and neck (it was the perfectly logical thing to do – actually, to try to escape the mental state) – I understand it perfectly why it was etc and I don’t need anyone to try to pretend it was the fuzzy wuzzy desire to connect because it was what it was – intense mental suffering and trying to define it as something ‘nice’ from a position of being removed from it is discounting my experience.

    I got out of ‘there’ alive, free, tough, resilient. I don’t need anything sugar coated. The rubber has to hit the road somewhere, I don’t see how advising people to go off the road is going to help get the gears in motion.

    And I just thought of a last thing here. Of course! My contact with the mentally ill is and has been extensive and now I am evolving that. . The label SZ does not mean ‘nothing’. I am most familiar with SZ people ‘my people’ (for the main) and recognize them, harmonize and can advise or assist them the best.There is a real world connection between ‘label’ and my shared experiences and correlated experiences with those such labelled. I find other people labelled differently to be in fact, different! and I am not so familiar to advise them. However, recently I have found out that it is very confirmed to myself that my internalized principles from an effective psychotherapy are universal and I am having some success with a few people labeled bipolar. Though I myslef have never had this precise experience I do I can understand it through associate experience which is very definitely different.

    So labels are not meaningless, they relate directly to different groups of people with those groups having common experiences of self of troubles with self .. on the main ,as it were …

  7. I can see skybluelight’s point. Delusions are real and that includes all religions. The problem is that psychiatry makes schizophrenic behaviour a manifestation of disease when being a defense against disease is closer to the truth. By convincing people that they have an irreversible disease, confounding illness with cure, and drugging them out of their minds with no end in sight, they crush any fighting chance for most. Psychiatry kills and dismissing crimes against humanity as irrelevant is not going to get much sympathy on this site.

  8. Anonymous (can’t go further in thread because there’s no longer the reply button):

    subvet I’m not a mason but I’m a firm believer in self determination, individual liberty and personal responsibility.

    My favorite sculpture is this…

    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-rqVoxjG_lX4/T_rgCmaBDfI/AAAAAAAABXI/L8lzSI6AHOk/s320/Carlyle_SMM_sky.jpg

    Man carving himself out of stone. I look at this for minutes and remind myself that it is only me, not government, not some rescuer, not some random quack, that can sort this life out. It reminds me that the decisions I make each day, shape my life, and that ultimately I am in control.

    There is also female versions:

    http://24.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m2nb7nrgzB1qefvafo1_500.png

    Man, Anonymous. See, maybe three-four hours before I saw your post, I was at work, bored, without nothing to do, and for some reason decided to further research what my nick Hermes might represent. One of the first pictures from Google image search was a sculpture of Hermes where he was building a sculpure of another god or person.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Hermes-louvre3.jpg

    I had seen the picture before (I’ve been to Louvre, maybe I’ve seem the actual statue too), but it left me thinking about what the sculptor had thought about, etc. I don’t usually think about this kind of things and I don’t look at sculptures. It totally blew my mind to see after some hours the sculptures who were forging themselves. I can’t believe the synchonity. And I’m not suggesting I’m forging you people in any way, or whatever ideas you may get. 😉

    • “I can’t believe the synchonity.”

      Be careful or I’ll have to introduce you to Dr. Coincidence.

      Dr. Coincidence was a sick man. He was a man who was trapped in the toxic air of his supposed superiority and authority.

      Dr. Coincidence was absolutely careless about Me, my PERSONAL issues, and instead, pathologized everything about me – causing my VALUE to be lost. And by value, I mean … My intellectual property.

      I had been rapid processing a large volume of information. I was also experiencing a toxic reaction to Effexor XR (which killed my brain, and I’m sure of it – “science” not needed).

      I was hospitalized in December of 2005. Too much was happening, all at once. I know for a fact, though I lack the scientific language, that there was a cosmological event happening at that time. INTENSITY, ooh. INTENSITY.

      I found a “pattern” and was doing the mental work, to understand. Dr. Coincidence told me that “it’s all a coincidence”.

      I said, “If it has a pattern, it can be defined. If it can be defined, it has a meaning. If it has a meaning, it has a purpose. If it has a purpose, it cannot be a coincidence.”

      He smirked and dismissed me.

      Dr. Coincidence was a sick man. He was a man who was trapped in the toxic air of his supposed superiority and authority.

  9. Hi.

    Can somebody write a new article about schizophrenia being brain damage? How, if the collective knew that and thought of schizophrenia as brain damage, instead of a “disease” or “mental illness” (words matter!) – what impact and effect that might have? And, I’d like to know what “environmental causes” they’re talking about. ??

    “Schizophrenia is thought to stem from early damage to the developing fetal brain, traceable to a complex mix of genetic and environmental causes. ”

    http://www.nimh.nih.gov/news/science-news/2013/taming-suspect-gene-reverses-schizophrenia-like-abnormalities-in-mice.shtml

    ty