Saturday, June 25, 2022

Comments by l_e_cox

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  • Though it may be inappropriate for me to interject into this conversation, my concept of “soul” is not so much “interior” as “superior.” Though a proper sense of self does require some “soul searching” producing a healthy level of self-awareness, there is no reason to see this as an “internal” thing particularly. Though one may not wish to show one’s real self in all situations, it does tend to shine through, using both the body’s energy and its own energy. I love it when a being feels free to show their true self to me (very common in children). It can be a truly awesome experience compared to interacting with someone who is putting on a show or so worried about what others will think that they suppress their own “light.”

  • Are you inventing your own therapy?

    I notice you have followed CCHR but have an issue with them. Do you consider there is something wrong with the other alternative therapies out there?

    Do you think the only form of triggering is from the presence of a toxic personality? You don’t allow the possibility that triggering can take other forms and that the responses are supplied by the person who gets triggered and not by the toxic personality?

  • Thank you, and feel free to contemplate the whole notion that behaviors are “wired” in the brain. I, however, thoroughly reject it, though it might work as a kind of analogy, as the mind IS very mechanical and operates similar to some sort of electrical machine.

    You might be familiar with learning how to drive, or how to play an instrument, or some other skill like that. With time and practice, those trained behaviors can become so well learned that a person doesn’t have to “think” any more in order to do them. That’s the sort of “rewiring” that a “behavioral intervention” can accomplish. I don’t know why they can’t just call it “training.” That’s what my teacher calls it.

    I have been taught that the mind is an energetic construct that is invisible to most people, though a few people have the ability to “see” or “read” another’s mind, and most of us have the ability to recall past events, even to revivify them. So while the brain serves as a analogy for the mind, it is NOT the mind, nor is it the location of the mind.

    There are even a few people who exist (or have existed) that have little or no brain mass but lead somewhat normal lives.

  • I see the only way through this to be to find non-biological remedies that are very effective and promote them loudly and persistently. Then, like with organic foods and other better alternatives, we might at least build a user base (or market) for therapies that are actually beneficial.

    Some people, factually, don’t really want to get better, but only want to demonstrate to others that they are “doing something about it.” They don’t care if the remedy doesn’t work; they are more comfortable being “sick.” We are up against this problem in all of the healing professions, as well as more broadly (such as in politics). It is something to keep in mind.

  • To me this analysis, though valid, is a bit superficial.

    As Dr. Levelthal notes: “As behaviorists we must speak out about what has gone terribly wrong with mental health care (it happened before with eugenics and lobotomy) because of psychiatry’s wrongdoing with respect to the scientific method.”

    So this does not date from 1980; it started much earlier. Eugenics and psychosurgery are also based on the false premise that mental characteristics are essentially structural. The “modern” work on this began with behavioral experiments (!) in the late 1800s. So behaviorism is stuck in this rut along with medical psychiatry, it is just that behaviorists were more willing to use scientific processes which led them in the direction of more workability. Their most common explanation for why behavioral interventions work is that they cause “neural pathways” to “rewire” which is almost as ridiculous as the chemical imbalance theory.

    Psychiatry (of course) but also psychology has been neglecting other work done in this field in some sort of mistaken sense of territoriality (at best) or fixed ideas about how life works (itself a rather unscientific approach to knowledge). There are even pockets within psychiatry and psychology that are exploring these areas, but tediously (probably without proper funding) and extremely conservatively (so as not to ruffle too many feathers?). After all these years, you would think human nature might have made some progress, at least among our academics, but it appears it hasn’t.

  • This is all quite valid as an observation of what has been going on in this field.

    I can only add that modern alternative ideas and therapies have been available since the 1950s, and were disregarded or purposely dismissed without any actual testing.

    Thus, not only is the “meat robot” idea misguided, there are some pushing this idea who have a vested interest in it remaining the dominant idea about human life, regardless of how ineffective it has been in helping people get better.

  • Though I can’t agree with this body-brain centered narrative regarding the ill effects of toxic stress, that fact that is does have ill effects is without question.

    We can work to reduce childhood trauma. But what exactly does that look like? And will that totally proof up someone against emotional attacks against them when they are older?

    From my point of view, we all need to get better-educated on how we think, why we feel, and how to know when to tolerate a behavior and when to treat it as concerning. The real villains in this story are the events that turn some of us into dangerous criminals, and then those criminals. From my view, we cannot protect ourselves from the effects of childhood toxic stress simply by eliminating childhood toxic stress. There are too many other factors that result in violent events. We need to be aware of all of them and the best ways to mitigate them.

    Not only does psychiatry and psychology not measure up to this challenge, but neither does our legal and justice system. All of it needs rethinking. Better answers do exist but are being fought by vested interests who may well include many of those dangerous criminals.

  • Most psychopaths (anti-social personalities) HAVE broken written laws. I would not advocate isolating people who have not gone through a legal/justice process.

    I do agree that most psych hospitals act as prisons, and that shouldn’t be tolerated.

    But I would argue that killing a person releases the personality to start living a new life, whereas keeping them alive but isolated from society keeps them out of circulation longer and gives us the opportunity to rehabilitate them.

    I realize this argument is not much supported by “rational” people. But I don’t base my views of life on what “everybody knows.”

  • I found out about this guy a few years ago. As I understand it, he had a metabolic condition that prevents the Paxil from being broken down and excreted by the body, so it just kept building up. No one tests for things like that before prescribing these drugs. This was a truly awful result of that level of negligence. I think we are lucky it doesn’t happen more often, but I am sure things like this happen more often than they are reported.

  • Frank, the path of “hospitalizing criminals” (giving them therapy or training instead of mere punishment) WOULD work IF the treatment worked! Why deny that any treatments work on some criminals when some do? Would you prefer a world perpetually filled with crime, rather than some day figuring out how to do something about it? Don’t you think the process of doing something about crime would probably include sitting down with the criminal and sorting some things out in their life?

    I am not juxtaposing imprisonment with execution. Why are you? I am juxtaposing isolation from society with doing something to help the person return to society. Some people cannot be returned to society successfully without undue expense. For them, isolation does not equate to punishment, but more likely would be experienced as a mild form of therapy.

    Killing people for what they did simply returns them to new lives probably resentful. But that’s a different discussion.

  • I am among those who believe that punishment doesn’t work.

    There are some people in prisons who will respond to educational “therapies” and some who won’t. Some addicts will respond to detox and rather mild therapies while others will not. The deciding factor seems to be whether or not they are a psychopathic personality or are closely connected to one.

    We can attempt to separate criminal behavior from mental illness, but I don’t think that path will ever be productive. The trick is that some “criminals” are pushed into criminal behavior by psychopaths while others ARE psychopaths.

    Psychopathy can be treated, but not by punishment or by conventional therapies. We isolate criminals from society to reduce the harm they do to society. It behooves us to try to return those who respond to treatment to society, as imprisoning a person is expensive, and can deeply upset someone who is put away unjustly or is capable of reform. But for most psychopaths the only realistic handling at this time is isolation from the community.

    As far as “demonizing criminal behavior,” what would you prefer we do about it? Treat it as normal? Criminal behavior can be discouraged by a system of laws and legal responses, but real criminals are inverted on the subject of punishment and will sometimes seek it as a self-deterrent, or see it merely as a game of cat and mouse.

    While popular culture will often label people with mental disorders incorrectly, I am more interested in how the legal system and mental health system handle the subject. We call people “crazy” all the time. But that doesn’t result in them getting electroshocked! Both these systems regularly lead to injustices but more importantly don’t produce productive happy people; they are ineffective.

    Society would find effective systems of justice and mental health helpful, so I don’t believe in simply abolishing them. But we desperately need to handle the fact that they are doing things wrong.

  • I had what was described at the time as a mild depression or might today be termed social unease or something on the autism spectrum. I had no thought of “recovering.” I just wanted to make some adult friends. I had lots of friends when I was a kid.

    One thing my therapist counseled me to do was to simply look more adult. I would describe this now as improving my image or my PR. Though I did this, I don’t know that this was a key action.

    Another suggestion that was more helpful was to find a gradient of social contact that worked for me. She recommended group hikes with Sierra Singles or dance classes. I tried both of these, and out of this I made two good friends – girlfriends. Neither friendship lasted, however, because I did not have a full complement of social skills. I also fell into an amazing year working as a volunteer musician with an ethnic music ensemble in the Bay Area named Gamelan Sekar Jaya. This was a truly great experience for me.

    My therapist also had me study the theory of Transactional Analysis, though she didn’t practice it with me. After I was sold and read a Dianetics book, I cut off my therapy.

    Did I “recover?” Well, I went on to live an amazing life, but I now recognize how much more I would have to do to fully “recover.” Our fall started a long long time ago. With all that mental baggage attached to us, it’s a real accomplishment just to make it through one lifetime. To live with utter confidence for an eternity is going to take a bit more work.

  • Susannah, I appreciate your attempt to get a more realistic time frame for my comment, but I gave the figure I did in total seriousness.

    As far as agriculture goes, I was under the impression that indigenous practices were the oldest (and wisest?) and more than 10,000 years old. I don’t believe they used any kind of slavery.

    Slavery and tyranny is at least as old as the Space Opera period in this universe, and that is at least millions of years old. I know this seems simply fantastic and made up, but I am familiar with the research that has dug into the longer history of life in this universe, and I feel that research has produced reliable data. In fact, I am being conservative in stating “millions” of Earth years, but I don’t feel the need to be more exact than that or delve into details just to make this point.

    There is much we can do in the field of mental health without delving into our very ancient history. But it is wise to understand that that history exists. Occasionally people will spontaneously recall events from long ago times, and we could easily see them as delusional if we don’t allow for our very ancient history.

  • I want to comment that this is indeed a valid phenomenon that may be causing undue upset in some people.

    Though exorcists take a very narrow-minded Biblical approach to this problem, others like Simon Parkes are more aware of how many different forms or “possession” or “harassment” are actually possible.

    I have even seen it in my community, where a trained person once ran into a baby that was being bothered by a disembodied spirit. He could only tell this was going on because he had developed his spiritual awareness to the point where he could communicate with that spiritual being.

    The point is that an expanded horizon of possibilities will lead to an expanded number of workable therapies. If those therapies are well-tested and not simply sold as “miracle cures” by grifters, then the cause of mental health could be advanced.

  • Dr. Maté has always been considered a leader in the more humanistic approach to emotional and physical healing.

    I was struck by the opening remarks in his article because this is a truth: That some people take emotional difficulties out on their own bodies. This has been known (and ignored by psychiatry) since the 1950s.

    Dr. Maté also describes almost perfectly the sort of personality that is most likely to get sick for purely emotional reasons. I have seen this with my own eyes.

    But his theory and solutions are weak and lack thoroughness. Yes, this article is about how “culture” can support healthy individuals or create unhealthy ones. But he fails to recognize that these same dynamics have been in play for millions of years, and though dealing with the current culture would inevitably help the situation – such as how the Bill of Rights in America helped advance our social life – it cannot wipe out the ill effects of lifetimes living under slavery or tyranny. This is a truth that more people in the field of mental health need to confront.

  • It is encouraging to find that some psychologists are not going along with the current psychiatric way of doing things.

    However, I would like to point out that the original meaning of “-iatry” refers to a “healing practice.” Though today that gets conflated with “doctors” and “medical” those are associative meanings and not necessarily the original meaning.

    That psychiatry in its current form has failed to live up to the meaning of its name is obvious. But so has Medicine in general. At least to the extent that it ever intended to be a healing art.

    Though I don’t see any detailed examples of how Dr. Sørensen operates, his comments remind me of the work of people like Jordan Peterson who take a didactic and persuasive approach to mental health, similar to how a “life coach” would operate. While there are many people willing to take this route in therapy, what about all those who are not?

    Kelly Brogan, for example, runs a very successful program for her clients that uses no drugs stronger than vitamins. But her clients must be willing to show up and pay her fee. I can only imagine that it is similar for anyone out there practicing some form of non-medical therapy. Can you get insurance to pay for such work? If not, then you are left with mostly well-to-do and more highly motivated clients.

    The methods I espouse run into the same problem. Practitioners want to make a living at what they do, but insurance won’t pay for it (even though it is highly effective). So they are left to serve the well-to-do.

    Clinical psychologists like Anders, Jordan and now even Kelly are getting closer to what is really going on with people. But they haven’t made it yet. Those who have are still considered to be outliers, or quacks. When clinical psychologists start talking about their subject – the psyche – in proper spiritual terms, then I will be even more encouraged. So, keep going! Hopefully you will catch up in time to make a difference!

  • Short term personality changes are common. A person is happy in life, then hears that a parent died and becomes sad. Then the question becomes: How long before they return to their “normal” selves?

    What happened there? The person had his attention out on the various activities of life, and was happily handling those activities, then his attention got pulled onto a tragedy in his life. So it is a matter of attention and control of attention.

    Drills that could put the being more in control of his own attention would help him feel more impervious to the bumps and twists that are bound to show up in life.

    Similarly, if a person loves dogs and carpentry, but feels sad all the time, the ideal “therapy” results in a person who still loves dogs and carpentry, but is less sad more often.

    The idea that a person has a depressed “personality” if he is sad or apathetic all the time is not very workable. The idea that a person who is depressed just has his attention stuck on something that is very depressing is more workable. It’s not a matter of changing his whole personality. It’s just a matter of unfixing his stuck attention.

    I see IQ as more of an acquired skill. Of course there are people who seem to be smarter than others, but a general aptitude like intelligence should not be confused with personality traits like what a being wants to achieve in life or how they like to dress or things like that.

  • I was largely unaware of these studies, except to know that they existed, and was surprised to learn that inherited IQ was still being pushed by anybody as “science.”

    If anything, the studies that include fraternal twins probably point to the conclusion that how the children are raised is more important than their genetics, at least for traits like IQ.

    I have been taught that IQ can be changed (improved) by various intellectual drills. I don’t know if this has been studied by academics, but my group is quite certain this is true. In fact, there are mental drills that can alter all sorts of personality traits. It’s an interesting subject that has been largely ignored in psychology. We can only assume that psychologists are being used to find ways to control people better, not to make them more intellectually and emotionally free and happy.

  • Though a full treatment for a reaction like this may not be practical in all cases, I don’t want to leave the impression here that its causes remain a total mystery.

    At the risk of being over-technical, I will summarize my understanding of the situation: Depression (or apathy) is one of many possible psychological reactions to events and environments that may be more or less obvious. In other words, the “triggers” can exist above or below our level of awareness.

    One whole set of valid therapies involves medical care, nutrition, and changing the environment to one that causes less of a problem. It also involves training and educative “therapies” that would help a person to cope with the problem.

    But if time and resources permit, the root cause of the problem can be located and handled. This is not necessarily a quick process. The root cause is unique for every single individual. There is no pat answer that will work for everybody. But there are people who know how to do this and get results.

    My main point in being here and commenting is not to point out that psychiatry is an unethical profession, even within its own set of rules, but that it is acting to hide from us much better solutions.

    Because Psychiatry has been so active in hiding better answers, many of us believe there are none, or that they still have to be discovered. I am simply here to point out that this has been happening and that we, as a species, are in a much better position than most of us believe. It is just a matter of ignoring the unethical “experts” and finding and using the more workable answers that they have been hiding from us.

  • While this is a valid point, this research is not about the technical details about various mental conditions, but about the deception used by a professional group to make itself look like it was doing something helpful when it really wasn’t. Though this is certainly not the only profession where this has happened, this profession in the focus of this website and in this context, this context is definitely unethical.

  • Though these two paradigms both have some degree of validity, the medical model that focuses on the brain and nervous system is the most limited, while the one that focuses on mental processes is less limited.

    They still do not cover the entire range of possibilities. Another old paradigm was “demonic possession” which was one ancient attempt to fill in the gap. Yet another ancient spiritual teaching involved the concept of karma, which explained this-life suffering as a result of unresolved conflicts from previous lives. These all in fact have some validity. And I don’t think we should rule out any paradigm simply because it could be used as a justification for mistreating the “mad.” Many in this field will find reasons to lord over patients regardless of how well we understand what makes them suffer. After all, it is mainly this irrational desire to suppress others that is the cause of all these problems in the first place.

    If people are getting into the mental health system for being merely a bit delusional (like Elwood Dowd in Harvey) or depressed – a very common response these days to the pressures of life – then we are back to our basic criticisms of the current system which seems to operate as a con game constantly looking for new “marks.” But there are many people who have experienced “mental illness” as real suffering or a genuinely confusing experience. They seek out the mental health system hoping for real relief, not a label and a bottle of pills. To help such people, all the paradigms of “madness” must be brought to bear and each cause properly identified and properly treated. In an ideal world, the being itself would be able to treat itself. But we don’t have an ideal world. We struggle every day just to find what’s left of our own humanity.

  • Appreciate your remarks here.
    That’s why I have a blog, I suppose.
    Few read it, and since it’s free it has ads, but it remains more of a body of work that can be studied (should one feel so moved) than seemingly random comments on someone else’s blog.
    Though I do have my opinions about how things work and am willing to state them emphatically on occasion, my purpose is to get others to look beyond their usual limits, as I have done, if for no other reason that to become aware of what is there. It is rather obvious to me that we have more to learn, as if we knew all there was to know we’d be farther along in our own development than we are.

  • It’s good to hear that someone believes in less (or no?) coercion in the delivery of mental health services. Beyond certain very narrow circumstances, you can’t force someone to “get well.” You can only force them to stop communicating, which a form of death.

    But without a total reevaluation of all we know about history and humanity, I think this is just lip service for an impossible dream. If we continue to operate on the basic assumptions most of us agree on now (man is basically an animal; spirit is a religious delusion) we can never wrestle power away from the tyrants and the tyrannical among us. We cannot win out over them unless we are willing to stand up to them with the full knowingness that body death does not end life. And currently, very few of us have that knowingness.

  • Well, you may speak for “us” if you want, but I for one believe I know something about the mind, about as much as I know about the Earth. Which is to say, there is a lot I don’t know about it, but I am quite certain of some basics which others have shown to be workable assumptions or have been demonstrated to me in other ways.

    If you want to pass off the mind as something ephemeral or not-quite-real, this would make some sense 150-200 years ago, but we could have said the same about radio frequency radiation. In modern times we developed instruments that can sense and measure radio frequency radiation. We have begun to do the same thing with the mind.

    However, with the mind we do have our own experiences of it to fall back on. Many people can think of times when they were in a dream state or restful state and saw vivid and very realistic pictures of one kind or another. They were looking at their own minds.

    Others have described the experience of telepathy, either with “higher” beings or with animals, and they describe it mainly as an exchange of ideas in picture form. Such pictures also come up in some types of spiritual therapy.

    So we can be fairly certain that the mind is some sort of energetic construct (invisible like radio waves) that contains pictures and other data of an emotional or conceptual nature.

    This mind has actually been studied quite extensively, but (oddly) not by psychologists. So while “we” remain uncertain about what the mind is or what to do about it, I don’t. And while my information about the minds is technically part of my religion, I see no reason why it couldn’t be tested and used in secular contexts, and it in fact has, at least in the case of animal communication.

  • Though the struggle between good and evil is seen as a “spiritual” struggle, I urge you to consider what a spiritual being really is.

    To me, a spiritual being is causative but formless, and immortal because it needs no concept of death or destruction to exist as itself. Thus, what would the concept of “evil” mean to such a being? In a world where you need nothing to survive, how could any other being ever threaten your survival?

    The concept of good and bad did originate long ago, as spiritual beings have always (it seems) enjoyed playing with each other, and for this needed some sort of physical thing that they could “win” or “lose.” With this came the idea that they could not immediately create a replacement for anything they made that was lost or destroyed. But on the spiritual level, this is a lie that is only necessary in order to have a game.

    So for me, the whole concept of good versus evil arises from the activity of playing with each other, and only makes sense in the concept of a game. We can have games like sports where there are rival teams, but no real enemies. And we can have games like war where the rival is considered evil. In games like sports, evil only comes in the form of someone or something that threatens the game or the playing field. Thus, peaceful people can see war as an evil game, whereas warlike people would not see the logic in that.

    But here we are discussing life in a very philosophical way. Though I think it is important for a better understanding of our human situation, in the human context there is no question that good versus bad (or evil) is relevant. The big question for humans involves which games are “good” and which are “bad.” And that seems to be what our political and religious discussions often deal with.

    Creating a list of human rights and freedoms helps define this for us. There will be rational beings that might disagree with some points of such a list, or argue that the list is useless because it cannot be enforced, or that the act of enforcement creates a moral quandary. These can be valid arguments. However, I would prefer to just run with the list we have and work to achieve better awareness of it and a world where human rights are fully respected.

  • At this point I rather fail to follow your reasoning.

    The hopeless will find all sorts of reasons why it is wrong to hope.

    And the hopeful will find all sorts of reasons why it is wrong to be hopeless.

    In the physical world, all things have sides, even peace. It’s a game, and a game must have sides.
    In the spiritual world we don’t need games, but as we are stuck in this physical world it seems wise to me to learn to play and to improve our skill.

  • What is the perfect disguise for a wolf? A sheep.
    What is the perfect disguise for the criminal? Being “decent” “righteous” or “holy.”
    But if you decide that all who are decent, righteous and holy should be suspect because this is the criminal’s favorite disguise, then you help condemn humanity to hopelessness and slavery forever.
    We CAN learn to tell the difference. There are many who do it every day.

    While I can empathize with the feeling that because we have been fooled so many times, all who try to improve society are just fooling us and themselves, I don’t believe that and never will. That’s what the criminals want you to believe. I don’t think it’s the truth. They desperately want you to believe that it is the truth. I refuse to go along with that.

  • Diaphanous, your points are true on the spiritual level, but they are compromised when playing the game of being human.

    How do you love a criminal? By allowing him the freedom to steal, rape and murder? Or by restraining him from doing so? In human society, we are bid to restrain the criminal so that no too many suffer.

    Of course, one cannot make someone healthy unless they come to you and ask you to help them become more healthy. Given that the person is willing to cooperate, there are several workable approaches to helping them become more healthy.

    I understand that my wording was a little sloppy. But this does speak to the basic problem of help. When someone commits a crime, the urge of the more morally strong is to help them to stop committing crimes. When someone breaks their leg, the impulse is to get the leg treated so that it will mend. But the criminal may refuse your help. And some who get hurt or fall sick may also refuse help, for various reasons. It is then up to the one responsible for helping to judge if he can help anyway by temporarily taking over control of the injured or unwell person and then return control to that person as they heal. If the helping professional does not in fact know his craft well enough to accomplish this, he has the choice to get trained, get out of that profession, or fake it (becoming a criminal himself). We might imagine that some fake it because they want to help but don’t actually know how.

    Of course, the hurt or upset person may fail to recover for other reasons. The primary reason would be that the person is under the influence of a psychopath who wants him sick, not well. So the healer needs to be aware of this possibility and know how to handle it when it arises.

    I won’t address all your points in detail. But your idea that if everyone could have around them the people they enjoyed having around them, life would become boring and monotonous is interesting. I don’t think it would work like that. People who like to be bored might be surrounded by people who bore them, people who like to fight might be surrounded by others who like to fight (or argue) and people who like to do great works might similarly be surrounded. But all those taken together do not make a boring world. It could possibly make a world where every human could be seen to be “on the same team.” But that leaves all the other species, the elements, and the ravages of space and time to challenge us. I don’t think it would ever get boring.

    Rebel, I hope the above discussion also clarifies my ideas a little for you. But it is not easy for me to be totally clear, partly because the various situations of life are not always totally clear. Distinctions between good and bad actions, right and wrong actions, are not always that clear. I am currently reading a book that involves an ancient battle that happened in India. It was really quite an atrocious battle, full of death and destruction. And yet, Krishna, a very spiritually elevated person, thought it had to happen. My teacher, on the other hand, would never allow that such a destructive action was justified. And he developed some special tools to help adversaries avoid violent situations.

    I just think that the impulse to make life better is a worthwhile impulse, and should be followed even when met with repeated failures. Having and defending a code of human rights is an important part of that process on Earth.

  • I appreciate your comment.

    Insomuch as psychiatrists are supposed to be the experts in this area, the problem does reflect more on them.

    But my understanding of the situation is that we have all been persuaded (or forced) at various times in the past to give up our spirituality and our higher mental abilities (like telepathy). So though psychiatrists are among those who work hardest to keep us in ignorance, most of us have a built-in reluctance to look in this direction for answers.

    This helps explain for me why it has been so difficult for me to get my message across and why so many do NOT oppose psychiatry for its technical ignorance but only for its lack of humanity.

  • While your view could be considered correct from a higher-level spiritual perspective, the psychopath gives us unending problems here on Earth, and it is only rational to expect Earth humans to want to do something about it.

    It is not like we don’t have enough problems that stem from other sources to give us “interesting” lives.

    And though I believe the problem of psychopathy has been technically resolved, I am not pressing here for that solution to be implemented, but just for a better understanding of how life on Earth works. As this involves an appreciation for the concept of Spirit and its ramifications, this is more than enough to challenge most people beyond their intellectual boundaries.

    Though every day we put off handling psychopathy in a more workable and resolute way puts us one day closer to losing the entire “playing field” (this planet), handling it incorrectly will only hasten that descent.

    And though it is a popular notion that evil people exist to teach good people lessons, I believe that a fuller inspection of our past history would indicate otherwise. Even if this were true, I don’t think it should stop us from pursuing the goal of making everyone good or “healthy.”

  • While I am reluctant to read the entire original paper, perhaps this report gives enough data to give us a place to start.

    The first point that strikes me is that the authors of the paper don’t seem to have an opinion on the subject, though it seems they consider mind-body dualism “illogical.”

    The second point that strikes me is that they consider mind-body dualism to be strictly a belief system with no legitimate research to support it. Considering that more than half of the population studied in the “1898” (actually 2012) paper were dualists, it seems that the reason for this might be worth investigating. Is it, perhaps, because the belief mirrors reality better?

    Per that paper “The Dualism Scale revealed that, to a surprising degree, a sample of American undergraduates held dualistic theories of mind that are at variance with contemporary neurophysiology, psychology, and philosophy.”

    I can imagine that the authors (as well as many of those they surveyed) are totally ignorant that any serious work has been done on the subject. Thus, they would also be ignorant of the fact that this work supports dualism but suggests a “higher” coordinating entity (which many call Spirit and some call The Soul). Though studies of NDEs (Near Death Experiences) are popularly known about, this is by far not the only work that has been done in this area.

    The quote from Churchland probably refers to Paul M. Churchland who is at UC San Diego: “popular dualism: This is the theory that a person is literally ‘a ghost in a machine’.” Well, that is what a person literally is! Except the placement of the ‘ghost’ is not entirely relevant, as it can be variously positioned, along with its mind, and is actually much more comfortable outside of the machine than inside it.

    I am happy to see such articles and papers, as this is where we need to look to accomplish something technically in this field. Though I can continue to accuse psychiatrists of being psychopaths, I know there are some who aren’t. But their medical training is totally insufficient to prepare them for their work, so I can imagine them getting discouraged and apathetic, or even going crazy. If we don’t find more workable methods for those who wish to be mind healers, we condemn them to lives of failure. While it is unethical for them to harm their patients in the name of help, as so many of them have done, they could use some hope amid the punishment they will ultimately inflict on themselves for destroying so many lives. And that hope lies in the direction of Spirit – Mind – Body.

  • Because this article is actually about human rights, I will attempt to summarize how I see this issue generally.

    I write here a lot about Spirit. This is because I consider that the existence of something we could call Spirit has been verified by careful study done by several different individuals. The ramifications that arise from taking Spirit seriously are vast and not fully explored. But if we begin with the idea that each of us started out as an immortal causative nothingness, then we might wonder how we all got to the point where we have to worry about psychiatry violating our human rights.

    The central theoretical construct that bridges a condition where a bunch of immortal beings are just sort of floating around amusing themselves with their own creations with a condition where a bunch of beings acting through bodies constantly interact with each other in a co-created universe is the Theory of Games. A game consists of only a few fundamental parts: freedoms, barriers, and a purpose. They also need a space (“playing field”) to be played in.

    Our human rights and our human rules are examples of freedoms and barriers. The most basic and “universal” of our rules describe our agreements about how any human game should be played. We want everyone to have the right to join, and the right to leave. We want all players to “play fair” or suffer eviction from the game.

    Being tied to a human body is itself a game, as the body presents us with various freedoms of action and various barriers to action. The goal, normally, is to keep the body alive for as long as possible.

    However, some games have the goal of eliminating as many human bodies as possible, or in war, at least enough to wear one or both sides down to a point where one side will be declared the “winner” and end the war. However, it is the normal intention of most games that play go on indefinitely, or forever.

    All basic laws (or rules of play) such as the 10 Commandments, assume that all humans deserve certain basic rights or freedoms, as long they play fair. The irony of games and rules of play is that a totally free spiritual being innately has all those freedoms, while their bodies essentially have a very limited set of freedoms. When a group of humans agree to a list of “human rights” they are essentially honoring the essential spirituality of people, and wish all involved in the human game to also honor that. But the fact that we can then write laws that will deprive individuals of some (if not all) of their rights if they are found to be cheating, demonstrates how frail many of those rights become in the context of being human.

    Generally speaking, it is considered “good” to play games that promote human survival and “bad” to play games that inhibit human survival. And from this we derive our basic moral and ethical frameworks.

    From our experience we have found that certain beings (they carry this as a spiritual characteristic, though they can decide to change it) can only play “bad” games. This has been a continuing and confusing problem for us, as those of us who believe we should all have rights want to share those rights with those of us who believe that others should not have any rights. In theory this problem would be handled by a justice system, but in practice no system yet invented has been able to handle the problem. These problem beings could be called “born criminals” or “real criminals.” In psychology they are usually called psychopaths.

    Essentially, then, the only reason we need to list out our “human rights” and pass laws to punish people who violate those rights is because psychopaths exist. If they didn’t we would likely be aware that we are spiritual beings, and any problems that arose from playing any of our games could be peacefully resolved by discussion.

    I learned all this in the process of studying the subject that we call Ethics. I don’t know that it is really the same as what is known as Ethics in philosophy, but it is intended to be similar. The basic problem that Ethics tries to solve is psychopathy. Not on a technical level, but on a practical level in day-to-day life. Human rights and human laws are all concerned with this basic problem.

    Today we can see an entire planet, more and more coming under the influence of the unethical (psychopaths), losing its grip on the subject of human rights, of good and bad (right and wrong) and of the importance of laws (rules of play). Though psychiatry may not in fact be the leading force in this attack on humanity, it certainly measures up to that accusation in many ways. To recover control of this planet from them will require intelligence, skill, courage and dedication. I think this work is important and that everyone involved in it should be recognized for taking some responsibility for getting it done.

  • This article was published 16 Dec 2019 and written by Mikkel Krause Frantzen. He “is the author of Going Nowhere, Slow: The Aesthetics and Politics of Depression (Zero Books, 2019).” He “holds a PhD from the Department of Arts and Cultural Studies, University of Copenhagen, and is currently postdoctoral fellow at University of Aalborg, Denmark.”

    The above is an extract from the larger article.

    I consider this absolute drivel.

    If one could construct a workable therapy from these outlandish ideas, I’d like to see it.

    That said, he is pointing out something that his generation is feeling, and perhaps more intensely than previous generations. There IS something out there trying to force us all into a corner that will cause us to give up (become “depressed”). He doesn’t know what it is, so he calls it “capitalism.” He then blames capitalism for creating the ideology (or “logic”) of “responsibilization.” That is ridiculous. We have been holding people responsible for how they feel and behave for thousands of years before capitalism became an issue. And we have been blaming demons, ghosts and other external entities for those feelings and behaviors just as long.

    Fact is, in the entire history of life in this universe we haven’t known where those feelings and behaviors come from, why they feel so all-powerful, or what to do about them (though some got close now and then).

    In the field of psychology in particular, several factors have conspired to make the problem near-impossible to solve. And that includes the tendency to reject even the possibility that it could be solved or study in the direction of solving it, rather than just wallowing in it.

    “Politics” is indeed key to an understanding of human psychology. An individual does not get messed up without interacting with other individuals. And the tricks others will use against you include political tricks like “you broke the rules (or laws)” or “you have an inferior blood line” or any number of similar tricks.

    But personal responsibility is also key to understanding human psychology. A spiritual being has to choose to interact with other beings. It has to choose to make others wrong when they do things it doesn’t like. It has to decide to use a body. It has to decide to improve its skills in the games it has chosen to play, or skip it. And it has to decide to forget what it really is and that it can be free.

    Workable therapies based on personal choices in the context of interactions with others exist. They are NOT based on the medical model. And any critic of the current system who fails to throw out the medical model and fails to include Spirit and its decisions about life will not contribute to this subject called “mental health” but will only muddy waters that are already much too murky.

  • A new form of care IS shaping up, but in a non-academic group, so is being ignored by the “experts.”

    Who’s to say for sure how well this newer approach could be adapted to secular society, but there have been some test cases (in particular, of the Purification Rundown though a group called Foundation for Advancements in Science and Education or FASE)) that look promising. But a breakthrough into the mainstream seems like a long shot at this point. Perhaps we can reach a “tipping point” where an acceleration towards sanity, instead of away from it, will begin.

  • The group I am active with is a human rights watchdog over the field of mental health.

    But what if the system totally cleaned up its act and never treated someone against their will or harmed anyone in their care? Would that be enough? Could we all go home and rest easy?

    Of course, it is highly unlikely that any such thing would ever happen. I suppose it could, but even if it did, I would not rest easy. What if every psychiatrist followed the path of Kelly Brogan and swore to never use any drugs on their patients? I would still not rest easy. Because Kelly does not yet know all there is to know about the human mind and how to improve it.

    And so, while human rights abuses remain prevalent in the mental health field, they are only slightly less prevalent in many other fields, like medicine, public health, government, and others. So we have a more basic problem to solve, and more basic lessons to learn. And most, as eager as they may be to make things better, are not learning those lessons. While I still have confidence that the people who are actually advancing human knowledge and application in these areas will eventually set things right, I see a lot of needless death and suffering yet to come.

  • Remember to take into account the flawed assumptions of neurology and psychology.

    Thus to say “we’re psycho when we dream” is probably a misstatement. All we know from what you have reported is that the brainwave patterns match. But psychosis is a waking mental state associated with certain behaviors, not a brain state.

    But I know at least one person who suffers from occasional “psychotic” episodes who is basically fine and only requires some quiet time when these things happen.

    Oddly, it is true that none of us have as much control over our minds as we could (can you remember what you were doing 10,000 years ago?) but most of us get by in this world anyway, and for those of us who are having a hard time, it’s probably because we bumped into one too many psychiatrists (or their psychopathic brethren)!

    So, while I would resent being called “psychotic” just because I dream, I don’t resent the idea that I could improve my mental and emotional abilities. For better or worse, psychiatry has no idea, and probably no interest, in helping us out in this regard.

  • “Incompletely understood” seems to be the operative concept here.

    As far as I can tell, Big Pharma has a stranglehold on the funding of research in this field. That leads to a complete disregard for any work that will not lead to yet another new pill. I don’t think these people understand the depth of deception that has been leveled at the general public by those who want us to believe that drugs are the only answer.

    Incompletely understood? It has been a full-on media assault going on for decades now. There are NO mainstream outlets who are pushing back against this marketing campaign. We have witnessed the commercialization – the industrialization – of health care and mental health care. And the public and workable alternative approaches are getting the short end of the stick.

    What is to not understand? It is a blatant and ongoing power grab. Maybe psychologists should be required to study political science?

  • My major point about animals is that science does indeed see them as mechanical things, just bodies. We as “normal” human beings don’t experience them that way, but that’s the science model.

    Both animals and humans (as well as plants, etc) are motivated by Spirit, but science leaves that part out. In the case of humans, who have learned to communicate through language (unlike animals who remain largely telepathic) we have a way of sharing our experiences with each other without having to be psychic. Thus, remembering past lives is also possible, although it takes special procedures.

    We have learned from doing this that many of us have motivated robots in the distant past, indicating that even a “machine” can be “human.” These are possibilities (I consider them facts) that science and psychiatrists cannot embrace with their current way of thinking. In the realm of mental health it results in an extremely limited approach, because you have to address Spirit to get anywhere with the mind.

  • Well, Krista, my church is working on a strategy that takes finances and media into account. Who else is following our model?
    But as things stand, with mainstream financial and media corporations well in the hands of psychiatry, we cannot realistically mount a public campaign that can match their current and imagined future efforts.

  • Fear is not a rational response to any situation. It is an understandable response, but will not result in rational behavior. To rationally handle an evil or destructive threat you must be able to recognize the threat and take quick and effective action. Fear paralyzes people.

    In this example, if you need a checkup, get a checkup but refuse any mental health screenings. If the screening cannot be refused, just leave. Acting terrified in that situation could only get one in more trouble. But I must admit, I have been staying away from doctors unless I know exactly what their beliefs are regarding certain basic subjects. That leaves some people who “care” about me worried about me. But at least I don’t have to go around feeling worried about myself!

  • What worries me the most about articles of this type is that in their fascination around the power dynamics of various technologies, there is no particular mention of whether they will actually help people get better.

    I see a practice being criticized but with no sense of how it could be replaced with something better.

    The main author (Cosgrove) on her academic web page talks about both social justice and human rights. Yet it has been demonstrated that these two ideas in many ways conflict.

    Sometimes I get the feeling that some of these people live in a different world (like a video game) and have no interest in inviting others who don’t just “get it” in.

  • An “anonymous physician” wrote this article. It was published a week ago.

    Good find to pull this out of everything that gets published on the web!

    Of course, many have been noticing this trend for years, if not the example of medicine in particular.

    But I don’t see emotion (or misemotion) itself as the problem here. A riot resulting in burned buildings and death can be justified and makes the news. And our entertainment products remain highly emotional. So, there seems to be some sort of thinkingness connected with the doctor-patient relationship, and perhaps similar relationships.

    And there is, in particular, the attitude of the corporate world to its “customers.” Though they are known as “people,” to Corporate they are treated more like a resource to be prospected and mined. And when no more wealth can be drained out of them, they become a “waste problem.”

    So, my analysis is that the corporate model is overtaking medicine, as it has done to entertainment, journalism, education and other social activities and institutions. We allowed this to happen. We like our smartphones! We were a bit naive about the whole thing, it seems. Perhaps that can be remedied.

  • I am surprised that you think elected officials can handle this. We have witnessed in my lifetime what amounts to a corporate takeover of the democratic process, using money and their expertise in marketing.

    We have seen most elected officials go along with the wishes of Big Pharma, which, outside of the vaccine controversy, includes a mostly wholehearted endorsement of psych meds.

    I think this is largely on us. We have to find better modes of healing and offer them to people with the result that they abandon “medicine” that doesn’t work and is just profiting off their suffering.

  • The new way is up to us to work out and put in place.

    I personally support the ideas and techniques developed by Hubbard. But I don’t know that this will be the first choice of the professional world, whatever is left of it.

    As mentioned in another comment, researchers like Vince Felitti have found a pattern of causality that at least aligns with other information I am aware of. The pattern is that early childhood trauma increases the development of disease later in life. Vince’s vision starts with an educational approach through mass media that would be more supportive of rational parenting behaviors.

    The probability of this actually happening, of course, is quite problematic. The whole mainstream media complex, along with most of academia, seems bent on pushing the unhealthy “medical model” for most human problems. But what we are seeing as the actual causes of these problems are unhealthy social interactions. And you can’t solve that by medicating it!

    But can you solve it through some sort of educational program? I know from my own experience that this strategy works for some people, but not for all people. Thus, if we really want to carry through with a more enlightened form of social betterment, it will likely involve a combination of ethical boundaries (we know this as a police force), education, and real therapies. This is my basic vision.

  • I didn’t know about Vince Feletti. He is a straight talker for sure.
    Hubbard made this same link in the 1950s. He was looking mostly at attempted (failed) abortions (fetal abuse), not child abuse. But he got similar results. Using his techniques, he found more earlier traumatic events (in past lives). That’s why he had to turn his work into a religion.

    I would see most childhood abuse as triggering events. These events can have powerful and long lasting effects on an individual. Psychopaths are quite aware of the most potent actions that will trigger self-hate and disease in a person. Given the opportunity, they will even teach these behaviors to the less sick in their environment or community. That these triggering events produce a shame reaction, and thus tend to be kept secret, is something psychopaths rely on to remain undetected.

    So, we see a way forward, both in the short term and in the longer term. In the short term, we have various educational activities that can strengthen people against these triggering events and the people who specialize in them.

    And in the longer term, we can look forward to therapies that will “defuse” or reduce or eliminate the power of earlier traumatic events to cripple the psyche and the body.

  • I am happy to see this sort of curiosity about people expressed in a comment.

    It’s a valuable observation to have noticed that all races in South Africa suffered. What I derive from that is that those driving and defending apartheid the hardest were destructive personalities. If they had not had an obvious class and race difference (white colonist versus black indigenous people) to take advantage of, they would have found something a little more subtle, like the Nazis did in the 1930s.

    Though I can see racial mixing as a real perceived threat to a white-skinned ruling class (because the darker tones are genetically dominant), I believe that a more general criminality is driving these people. And on top of that, there is a spiritual malaise on this planet that affects everyone to a certain extent, and makes the situation worse.

    Though psychiatry as it currently exists is an obvious target, as this is the profession that claims to hold the keys to solving these riddles of poor human behavior, if it didn’t exist we would still have huge problems on this planet. Not only is psychiatry fatuous and enormously self-protective, but so are many other sectors of human society. To understand why psychiatry is the way it is, we need to understand why people are the way they are.

  • While this article largely speaks for itself, I might make a few comments.

    In the early 1960s the NIMH was very free with its money, and its giveaways included a grant to my father which helped him complete a phD in Social Work at UC Berkeley. Our family lived quite well while my father was going to school, indicating that the grant had been quite generous.

    We are up against a funding mechanism that can turn a poor man into a member of the ruling elites. That money and whatever strings must go with it have tempted many a young person into the “tribe” of psychiatric faith. Insel is obviously a member in good standing.

    What impressed me the most about my father’s academic approach was that he absolutely refused to read any of the materials I sent him concerning subjects he should have been interested in because they were written by Hubbard. This particular bias is extremely common in academia, in my experience.

    Thus a member of this tribe serves his group by refusing to recognize the existence of any meaningful alternative to their answer to the problem.

    From the point of view of someone seeking real reform, anyone who toes the line as well as Insel has should not be looked to as a potential catalyst for change. It was good manners, perhaps, to devote an entire article to his latest book. But not helpful to the rest of us. This person has left the realm of the rational. Of course the treatments are contributing to worsening outcomes. This is an observable fact.

  • Judging from this article, the authors cited give a valid analysis.

    But then they suggest a branch of Critical Theory as the answer? Critical Theory has failed us in other fields, so I would not trust it to resolve this issue.

    In sports, the team that gets the most points wins the game. This might be called “evidence-based sports.” It might be noted that not all sports have always worked this way!

    I don’t disagree with the idea that a handling for a situation should be based on evidence that it works. But in the long run, we also need saner ways of getting better ideas. If one idea kills 40% of the patients and the other kills 50% of the patients, is it really “evidence-based medicine” to choose the one that only kills 40%? What if the process of finding a handling eliminated one that would not have killed anyone and would have been more effective at making people well?

    So we also need a saner approach to making people well. Medicine has its place, but it is obviously not the total answer, and on top of that, it has been taken over by an industry that is not ethical.

    Several years ago, I got the idea that we needed to re-think the whole subject of how we provide healing services to a population. My first idea was to prohibit profit-making businesses from entering this field. But now that seems a bit superficial. The corporate world has nearly a stranglehold on modern society. And if they take over central governments, then there is no one left with sufficient force of arms (let’s be practical) to enforce any ethical framework on big business. And there are many “non-profits” among the list of offenders.

    So we have been pushed so far towards the edge of the cliff now, that we must either learn how to fly or be willing to fall. We are moving into a world of “miracle and wonder” as prophesized by Paul Simon. “Medicine is magical and magical is art.” We COULD learn to fly, but will we, in time?

  • Though this misses the mark for me, it is worth a bit of contemplation.

    Whether or not the present-day family is at the core of an individual’s upset or confusion, there can be no doubt (in my mind) that the family experience is one of the most basic experiences of human life.

    And though a particular family might not be that spiritually connected, there is also a good chance that they are. Particularly if a being has unfinished business with its family, it might find a way back into that family.

    The simplest example of a hidden family dynamic is when a pregnant woman experiences some sort of trauma. That’s going to mean that the child also experienced it. And if the trauma was related to an abusive husband, for instance, then the pattern may repeat in every child.

    Hidden (suppressed) events that are a part of the family’s history could also play a big role in “inherited” upset.

    However, it can get a lot more complicated than this. Though families are a good place to start, if you don’t eventually include past lives, the case may never resolve. Therapists be prepared!

  • We have so much to learn, don’t we, about what really heals!

    The whole discussion about brain stems may be palliative to some, but it’s way off the mark for me. But in rhythm and music, we have several factors all working together to – at a minimum – calm a person down if not switch their attention totally off what was bothering them to something happier or at least neutral.

    The primary factor I am aware of that others might miss is Aesthetics. Beauty attracts attention. Look at how advertising continues to rely on it. A simple song or rhythm is more likely to be emotionally neutral or a bit positive. Introducing that into the environment of someone who is worried or upset helps them pull their attention away from the misemotional events that were triggered and onto a more neutral or positive present time.

    A secondary factor is that music is non-verbal. This takes a huge burden off anyone who is having difficulty explaining what they are experiencing using language. And language itself can be triggering.

    My training includes basic assists for the deeply disturbed and they do not include language. If you are stuck in too much trauma, you can’t talk coherently.

    I don’t know much about CBT, but it requires a level of “hereness” that not all people may be able to attain. I have met several people like this. These people have jobs and “seem normal.” But you try to have a serious conversation with such a person, and you see how out of it they really are. You’ve got to get a person’s attention well back onto present time before any sort of talk therapy will have much effect.

    The techniques I have been taught do not include music, but it makes sense to me that music could have this effect.

  • To see a licensed psychotherapist bring up this subject is interesting.
    I am sure many therapists would prefer to work unhampered and in a manner that is most beneficial to their clients.

    This website tends to concentrate on instances where the practitioner himself or herself acted in ways that showed they did not have the well-being of their clients at the top of their list of priorities.

    However, there is indeed a whole administrative structure supposedly there to support the work of the therapists that may also have other priorities. In fact, you might expect this. I have even experienced this is in my own case, in an environment where there are strict policies against interfering with the progress of the person being serviced.

    The idea of including this sort of behavior as just another “TIB” seems incorrect at first, but does point out a larger issue: Just how much does society, as a group, want people to get better? Does the group actively encourage excellence and emotional freedom among its members, or does it feel threatened by such people?

    It seems that just 60 years ago, we were at least giving lip service to the idea that our culture should be composed of “the best and the brightest.” Yet already at that time it was becoming obvious that compliance to enforced social norms was what was desired from most people. And these days, this desire is openly stated by leaders in government and in business.

    So, while we still have a mental health system, and we still have leaders claiming they are all for improving mental health (but more precisely, treating “mental illness”) we have a culture that observably would prefer that we stay sick. As if the evils done by the psychiatric profession weren’t bad enough, the society more and more sees the biggest mental problem as noncompliance with enforced norms. And treating that will not result in mental health. Quite the reverse!

  • Though I could not make it through this entire “episode,” what I read was most interesting.

    I think of Forensic Psychiatry as an academic subject, populated by people like Robert Hare and Stanton Samenow. Through these researchers we have the only somewhat reliable data on real-life psychopathic behavior. I am not much interested in other “criminal” behaviors. For me, most such behaviors stem from contact with a psychopath, or are concocted by a psychopath in an attempt to silence a perceived enemy.

    But these “forensic psychiatry” wards, euphemistically referred to as Mental Health Centers, are little more than mental wards where the staff take the role of prison guards and the patients are the prisoners. If not humane, at least this is honest. One might expect a few psychopaths to be on staff at such facilities. And that is the worst tragedy for me. No psychopath should ever be allowed anywhere near the subject of mental health, yet the field is crawling with them.

    I think it should be law that all staff in such facilities be able to pass tests showing they are NOT psychotic, multiple times if necessary. And of course the ones giving those tests would have the most stringent requirements for employment! Psychiatry has such tests; we might as well use them in a way that would make a difference.

  • I was wondering if anyone else would eventually come to express this realization!

    I think, rebel, that you are basically correct in your assessment of the situation.

    Whether one believes in just one Creator, or that each individual is capable of being a creator, when we assume that such a creator exists, the problem begins to simplify. And the fact that the materialists have it backwards explains why they can never get it right. They have assigned Wrong Cause.

    I know from my experience in engineering that until you find the correct cause (or Root Cause or Right Why) a problem remains unsolvable. This is really just a basic of sane thinking.

  • From what I understand, the argument that atheism ushers in the state to replace our reliance on God for moral guidance is an old and common one. I personally don’t know who first voiced the idea.

    But you see, “neoliberal capitalism” is not the only atheistic/materialistic ideology. Marxism and Communism are also atheistic and materialistic. As are many other modern ideologies.

    I did not grow up around the ideas of Critical Theory or its many derivatives, or the ideas deconstructing capitalism into “neoliberal” “corporate” “croney” and other flavors. So I see this talk as excessive and over-complicated.

    My basic question about an idea or ideology is: Is it sane? And beyond that: Does it incorporate a respect for Spirit in some form? Does it deal with the problem of criminality or instead ignore it or insist that it will no longer exist if that particular ideology is implemented? Has it been tested and shown to be workable? Does it incorporate safeguards against subversion or alteration in ways that could make it unworkable or give it a bad name?

  • And it is now, likewise, becoming an “old attack” to accuse white men of being driven by their male chauvinism. But I thought this group was above casting aspersions on people for their views. So I am sorry if my comments came across that way. I am very concerned about this embracing of Critical Theory, as I see it as a very confused, and purposely confusing, view of reality. That view is not limited to women, and extends back to Marx himself, if not also to some of the ones he drew his ideas from, like Hegel.

    We are obviously dealing with very heartfelt beliefs. I don’t mean to criticize the believers in criticizing their beliefs, but sometimes I err. And it can be difficult to keep the two separate, can’t it? You certainly think there is something wrong with me, and not just my beliefs. Well, perhaps their is. Yet it is ideas, and not personalities, that we are mostly addressing here. Until it comes down to the insane, where the two intersect.

  • When you speak about a system like Mental Health that has been infiltrated, if not constructed, by psychopaths, you must look beyond profit as a motive. Profit is a rational motive. But the psychopath is not a rational person.

    Were there not psychiatrists in Soviet Russia? Did they make profits? Or the ones that worked for Hitler? Psychopaths exist in all societies, and though they love to hide behind rational motivations, these are in fact lies. That’s why no sector of the planet has been immune from their influence; no sector of this planet has yet to come to terms with the brilliant criminal who can act “normal” while destroying the lives of all around him,

  • Oh gosh! The only point I was trying to make was that I thought there were a bunch of psychiatrists who were Marxists. And then, instead of determining if that was true, we get into a huge argument about whether Marx was a genius or a fool.

    I stand by my basic premise which that what the world needs now is sanity, not some new half-baked “system” that is likely to end up in the wrong hands and result in the murder of millions of people.

    Sanity! That’s what mental health is all about! I am not interested in diatribe. I am interested in finding ways to get the mental health system to make saner people.

  • I am surprised, Steve, to see you unclear on this point! But of course, there is what might be called “pure” Marxism, and then there is what has been done in its name in real times and places.

    But both China and the Soviet Union have been happy with a totalitarian approach to bringing socialistic “equality” to the people. Though I see this as hugely hypocritical, it cannot be denied that many psychiatrists worked for the Soviet state in its time, just as they worked for the Nazi state in its time and for the Corporate state. They are political cowards who seek the favor of any ruling government and have been willing, as a profession, to service the political needs of whoever is in power. Also, their traditional approach to expanding their influence has been self-described (by J.R. Rees) as “5th column” which is to say, subversive. This has also been the chosen strategy of Communists and Neo Marxists (including the Woke) in the U.S. (if not elsewhere).

  • While what you say is sensible, what we are saying is that this whole medical approach to mental health is not only inappropriate but is also ineffective. It is not even that effective in the field of body health, as many doctors refuse to recognize the validity of using vitamins as treatments, even though much earlier work in medicine recognized some diseases as the result of vitamin deficiencies.

    The fact is that mental health practitioners do need a diagnostic system. But currently they don’t even have a workable theory of how to improve mental health. And this is partly due to the pressure exerted by vested interests, just as the drug companies would like to push supplement (vitamin) makers out of the field of body health.

    But in this case, the interest that the vested interests are vested in is the desire to prevent individuals from becoming aware of who and what they really are. Without this understanding, the route to any sort of workable mental therapy, or even a theory of one, is totally blocked. With this understanding, the whole world would change. And so the vested interests oppose it. If we cannot dislodge the current system, we could at least develop an appreciation for what a workable system would look like. Then, if we ever acquire the power to put one in place, we will be ready.

  • I could not disagree more. But you are free to be a Marxist, as I am free (I hope) to be an anti-Marxist. I see Marx and a petty criminal with a keen intellect who spent his life trying to explain why he disliked work. This may be unfair, but I think it is warranted.

    It is my understanding that many psychiatrists had Marxist leanings as this was a type of “liberation” ideology that suited them. That psychiatrists in the West ended up supporting the corporate power structure, while those behind the Iron Curtain worked for the Soviet power structure indicates their criminality, not their political allegiances.

    I don’t believe that Marx had any better grasp of true freedom than do the corporate publicists currently flying the flag of Social Justice. If anything, old fashioned Capitalists had a better grasp of freedom and human rights than did the old Left or the new Left.

    Psychiatry, as a dramatization of psychopathic tendencies (not as an impulse towards real help, which does motivate a few people in Mental Health) will assert its rightness no matter how accurate the criticism, and will justify its atrocities using whatever ideology seems the most popular or convenient at the time.

    I wish political ideologies were not brought up in relation to the problem of psychiatry, as I see them as irrelevant. They are as irrelevant here as they are in discussing the problem of crime, or of illiteracy or of malnutrition, as these problems have plagued us regardless of who was in power or who was blamed for these problems.

    The problem of bringing real love and freedom to a civilization is senior to mere politics and cannot be achieved through political change alone.

  • While you are quoting standard Marxist theory, I don’t know what that has to do with reality. Do you agree with the Marxist view of life on Earth? You may state the theory as fact if you desire, but there are many who will not agree that this actually demonstrates any sort of workable view of life.

    “Individualism” has a lot more to it than is contributed by neo-Liberal (or neo-Conservative for that matter) ideologies. And “free markets” need not be wedded to Capitalism, nor Capitalism to Corporatism.

    And “injustice” has a lot more to it than a manifestation of class privilege. Real criminals scream about “injustice” all the time, so we need a little more nuanced approach to that subject to understand it well.

  • It is perhaps unfair for me to characterize this woman’s ideas as confused and hopelessly tied to failed ideologies. But that is the simplest way for me to state my reality about this.

    Psychoanalysis was as close as psychiatry ever got to abstracting the human mind in a useful way. It failed for the same reason that Jung did. He wanted to include his ideas about Spirit in his work, but felt pressure from his academic peers to avoid that topic. And so it is with “modern” forms of psychoanalysis. I don’t care how much Critical Theory (or Whiteness theory or Decolonial theory) is in the mix, if they don’t address the subject of Spirit, their theories WILL NOT WORK in practice, as Spirit changes the entire ballgame.

  • Per this write-up, Szasz was a Libertarian, not a Capitalist. I find your political analysis wanting in several ways, but what we are seeing in modern society that so many people are reacting against is corporate capitalism intensified by various control technologies like electronic media and computer systems. This sort of society represents an antithesis of Libertarian ideals.

    This is what organized psychiatry is actively promoting, as it has a place in a society where corporate criminals control the means of production, distribution and banking. It seems that these corporate interests, now morphed into “friendly” tech companies, are in the process of overtaking the other liberation movements you mentioned and, using Critical Theory and other confused ideologies confounding “liberation” with a world of corporate dominance. Thus we see psychiatrists and psychologists supporting the ideas of Critical Theory in their publications. They know, apparently, where that road actually leads.

  • It is good to see a discussion of Szasz, as I have not studied him. I am a Scientologist, not a student of psychiatry or even of medical ethics. But I think the only reason Szasz distanced himself from Scientology was that he probably knew very little about it, which is the same reason most people reject it. Of all the examples of “institutional bigotry” (to misuse a modern catch phrase) the mindless denigration of Scientology has been one of the worst. Because Scientology stood squarely in the way of the advancement of the Mental Health State (and still does).

    It looks like Torrey lacked personal integrity and was just going with the flow. The mention of Trump, however, is gratuitous.

    Biederman got caught. I wonder how many others never were.

    Though Levine’s overall premise is crudely put, it is basically correct. Left unexplored however, is how a freedom-loving society (ours) deteriorated into the fear-based society that it is today. My explanation for this is that one particular personality type – not that common, but very destructive when bright and empowered – gained the upper hand. These people are commonly known as psychopaths. I call them criminals. My teacher calls them Suppressive Persons. Our last hope against this personality type is to understand it better than it understands itself and exploit its weaknesses to remove it from positions of authority. As these beings think nothing of convincing a police officer (for instance) that an enemy of his is dangerous and should be shot on sight, this project requires a certain amount of bravery.

  • I suppose the most interesting thing about this article is that it appeared in Wired. I found this information about the technology industry: “… the most recent Harvey Nash Tech Survey, conducted in 2019, included the stark finding that half of tech professionals said they were or had in the past been concerned about their mental health due to the pressures of work.”

    The article goes on to explain that a new survey conducted in 2020 found that about a third of this same group felt that their mental health had worsened.

    So this subject is a big deal among Techies. This same group at the same time tend to be fervent “science believers.” But that doesn’t mean that they are actually good at thinking scientifically. It just means that if you tell them that there might be a spiritual component to some human problem, they are likely to laugh nervously. Engineering school didn’t cover that.

    To be fair, I was taught about the importance of Spirit in the realm of mental health by a guy who likened the human mind to an electronic computer with “memory banks” and “circuits.” But as electronics was my field of study, I was amused by the analogy without being overwhelmed by it.

    In short, most of these people still don’t know what they are talking about. But they should at least be aware that there are two distinct and different aspects to the mental health problem.

    The first is: How do you treat (as in, handle administratively) someone who seeks help (or is forced to see a professional)? That is really what the DSM is all about. It is for the benefit of the doctor, the therapist and society at large. It is not for the benefit of the patient. Never was and never will be.

    The second aspect is, what do you do to make someone feel better? Or cure them? This involves the technology of treating mental illness. Psychiatry doesn’t like to talk about this because, as a profession they don’t really care or are apathetic about ever figuring this out. They are a bunch of posers who think that all their rules and manuals and drugs will convince people that they are doing something useful when they really aren’t.

    I wouldn’t be here writing this today if I didn’t think there ARE ways to make someone feel better. But you have to start by really wanting them to get better, and not just interested in making a buck off their suffering. So many “mental health” complaints could be handled by letting the person get enough sleep, or get properly fed, or in the extreme, remove them from an environment that is overtly abusive. If the patient doesn’t have any of those problems, the handling is a little more technical, but not necessarily rocket science. It all starts by wanting the person to feel better, to be happy. If you don’t start there, you’ll never get anywhere.

  • We, as in all of us, Mankind, or anyone who cares and has proper training.

    But I should be clear that I do think it is NOT an illusion that some mental problems stem from something a person has (or created for themselves).

    I don’t think that today’s “toxic society” is the problem. It gets in the way of implementing solution, but there are many other toxic societies and relationships and decisions that have contributed to the problem.

  • Though the author cited, Adam Rutherford, is a geneticist, he is mainly a science journalist. So I am surprised that he is willing to deal with this subject in his new (though not yet published) book.

    The author of the article, however, is John Nicholas Gray, a philosopher. He is considered by Wikipedia to be a “pessimist.”

    Interestingly Gray dumps this problem squarely in the laps of “secular progressives” as he assumes they have attained global control and will maintain it. Yet, if this assumption is correct, why should they worry about medical ethics? They don’t when it comes to mental health. Many argue that they also disregard this subject in the field of public health. So why should the field of genetic engineering be any different?

    Gray’s article includes a very informative historical rundown. But he leaves us with the unsettling (though we here are already greatly unsettled, aren’t we?) conclusion that eugenics did not in fact die, but simply went dormant for a while, waiting for a new term and concept to latch itself onto. Transhumanism? Perhaps. This is very popular with some Big Tech honchos and is even endorsed by the Dalai Lama.

    Gray notes that Rutherford asserts that basic human rights are “fictions” (or noble lies). Though I could consider God to be such an idea, I don’t consider human rights in that way. Yet here we see how the door has been opened to a future where human rights as we think of them no longer matter, as Big Brother always knows best.

    The problem with Eugenics in particular, of course, is that it doesn’t work. Rutherford’s book covers that fact. But in the great cauldron of political ideas, since when did workability matter? This is an activity governed by the principles of PR, marketing and propaganda, not utility or even morality.

    We in our struggle to reform (or remove) the Mental Health System must realize what a frail bridge we walk across if we do not, in the process, lay to rest the whole materialist idea of brain equals mind and death equals the end. They don’t, they never did and they never will. And in that small revelation lies the seed of an answer to the question of why people feel so much better when they are free to decide for themselves.

  • It would be good if that were the only thing going on, but it isn’t. There are plenty of people who need real help. Though many of them were triggered by bad experiences, we can’t ever hope to totally eliminate bad experiences from life. That’s just not realistic. We can strengthen people when they want to be stronger. That’s about all we can realistically do, and that’s more than we are doing now.

    Ultimately, “society” is only a product of all the people participating in it. So, you can’t blame “society” without taking a look in mirror.

  • Actually, some physical maladies do have a spiritual causation component. This can be seen in Ian Stevenson’s work on birth marks that match a past life wound. But of course it is commonly accepted that the only reason people get sick is because of a pathogen or a poison. Attempts to apply the same rule to “mental illness” are absurd, and if we addressed the spiritual component of strictly physical diseases, we would keep more people healthy for longer periods of time. Yet another reason why the Medical Establishment wants nothing to do with actually effective remedies.

  • Though I find this discussion a bit overworked, the basic proposition is perfectly valid.

    Many words have multiple meanings, and most meanings are rooted in cultural traditions that trace back into forgotten history. To say that the meanings are “arbitrary” overstates it a bit. One either uses a word in line with its traditional meanings or misuses a word in the hopes that it will somehow impress or fool people. Some of the misused meanings enter the cultural tradition, such as “xerox.”

    “Illness” is derived from a word meaning “evil” and reflects earlier beliefs that unhealthy conditions were caused by possession by evil spirits. The word definitely implies poor health or reduced ability to survive bodily. But I don’t like to concentrate in these words. It is obvious that Psychiatry would like us to believe that mental problems are caused by some unhealthy condition in the brain. They equate mind (mental) with brain. To me, this is totally absurd. The two have only a loose connection to each other. That is the huge mistake, and we will not escape it simply by changing terminology. We actually need to figure out what a mind really is.

    Next we need to attain a full list of the actual causes of diseases and/or illnesses, and develop techniques to address all of them. To assume that biological disease only has biological causes is amazingly narrow minded which would not be tolerated in many other fields of knowledge. Most recognize the environment as an obvious factor. This includes of course all the various possible environmental toxins. But the list is not yet complete. Freud and many others had the idea that past “trauma” would be another possible cause. How Psychiatry succeeded in dropping this whole line of investigation is another story, but Psychology never totally did, though their dogmatic blinders have prevented them from discovering the whole story. A few got close.

    And so we have the current scene. Regardless of terminology and rhetoric, most practitioners of Psychiatry and Psychology don’t know what a mind is and don’t know how to solve mental problems. As one might expect, I have my own ideas on this subject. But the beginnings of a better understanding have already been delved into by the old hypnotists, parapsychologists like Ian Stevenson, and a few others considered outliers by those wedded to medical answers but who actually are getting closer and closer to better answers. The way things are going, they may never arrive. I feel confident, however, that this knowledge exists in a workable form and is factually publicly available even though most practitioners will deny it with their characteristic academic arrogance.

  • I am a little surprised that this is being framed as a problem with “neoliberalism.”
    Isn’t that kind of a code word for “conservative?”
    They are criticizing a human weakness (seeing other humans as objects instead of people) that has a long and tired history on this planet. I don’t really see what neoliberalism has to do with it. There HAS been a trend towards greater corporate control of the economy and of government. This is sort of a technocratic impulse, and has been taken up in a lot of science fiction literature. But this trend definitely includes a tendency to reject those who don’t fit in or aren’t productive. That could include the young, the old and the disabled.

    There is a rather famous old science fiction story about a computer that took over a city and convinced all the residents to commit ritualistic suicide at the age of 21. This kept the human population “more productive” while also limiting the population. It is an ancient and recurring fear that the young will find ways to neglect the old rather than care for them with respect, and this seems to be happening. Calling it “neoliberalism” seems dogmatic and a bit insincere. I would call it “corporatism,” or something similar.

    Either way, it is a shame but would not be my first priority, though I am well on my way to becoming a prime target for The Machine. I would be more interested in restoring the entire society to a more hopeful frame of mind concerning the future. It seems a large portion of younger people are scared to death of dying before they even reach old age. This used to be a concern of mine, and according to recent surveys about 60% of young people are very worried about climate change. If we can’t keep the society in the positive emotional band, all sorts of quite dire consequences could result, including various forms of genocide that could be age-based.

  • In this particular study they were evidently testing drug efficacy only, not treatment regimen efficacy. So the drug and saline “placebo” were administered IV, and I doubt any further procedures were involved. As we know, when we are dealing with people with emotional problems, this approach borders on inhumane. They need someone to talk to much more than they need a new drug in their blood.

    In such a situation, it is a little amazing that the study found any “efficacy” at all. But they did after the first 3 days. It then wore off, or vanished. I personally am not in favor of any drug-assisted mental therapies. But I know some who think ketamine as well as more potent psychedelics should not be ignored in the context of therapies that include emotional work with a trained facilitator. But I think they should be ignored. I think we need to move on from any idea that drugs are helpful for mental-emotional distress on anything other than an emergency basis.

  • The reliance on Critical Theory to explicate the obvious problems connected with “mindset” approaches to economic change ruins the basic premise, which is that these approaches don’t work well.

    Ditto the mentioning of various concepts borrowed from Evolutionary Psychology.

    This discussion fails (in my book) for the same reasons that so many others fail: Because they don’t recognize that people are immortal spiritual beings and they have not paid any attention to findings based in that fact.

    When one does the above, one finds what, for me, is a better terminology and theoretical framework for thinking about and talking about this problem.

    Enforced poverty – which is what many people today are really experiencing – is simply too discouraging for most people. A few make it through such conditions, then look back and tell the others, “if I could do it, you can.” But that isn’t really true. There are good reasons why only a few manage to make it out of those desperate situations “by their own bootstraps.”

    And one of those reasons is that they are simply spiritually stronger individuals. Spiritual strength is not that common here on Earth. And to develop that strength if you weren’t born with it is not easy, even if you know how.

    To the spiritually strong, “mindset” makes sense. To most people it’s just more psycho-babble.

    But Critical Theory (analyzing all human relationships for their hidden power dynamics) and Evolutionary Psychology (the study of human psychology as if it were the product of animal evolution on Earth) are not going to further this discussion much beyond the faultfinding that is expressed in this article.

    There ARE many hidden power dynamics in human relationships. But they have developed over millions of years and stem from the fact that we are immortal spiritual beings whose memories have been crippled, not from the fact that this-life “oppressors” prefer to keep themselves hidden.

    And there ARE elements of animal psychology that impinge on human behavior. But it’s not because humans are animals, it’s because human bodies are animals.

    I applaud those who realize most current approaches aren’t working. But I also insist that they become more intellectually flexible. Much of this newer data comes from the 1950s, and it has only been mushrooming since that time. If you really want to solve more human problems, you need to find out what others who had similar goals found out when they looked.

    Academia – and that definitely includes psychology – was pretty well captured by what has become the corporate-political machine (“military-industrial complex”) by the middle of the last century. Very little real innovation (in the humanities) has been produced by academia since that time. It is time for those who want real change to ask like-minded people outside academia what they know that academia is ignoring.

  • I honestly believe that the being itself is primarily responsible for the formation of its own personality. When you see certain behaviors in response to certain inputs, you are seeing the results of a personality already well-developed acting in its environment. Of course this does not mean that there are no learned behaviors or attitudes. But there are many inputs available and the individual has some choice about which ones to accept and which ones to reject. Responses to childhood trauma, for example, are likely to be a mixture of triggered reactions and learned behaviors, and result from a personality that is already quite well-developed.

  • Bradford, where did you learn that a person does not create his or her own personality?
    Even if one modifies your statement to read “personality is formed out of all the words and behaviors directed at that person during their SPIRITUAL childhood,” it is still a creation of the person themselves. Different people can have near-identical “inputs” and end up with very different personalities. If the individual were not the ultimate creator of their own personality, then all the therapies that I know work wouldn’t work.

  • Daniel is a very gifted member of this community.
    It’s good to hear from him again.

    Like many of us, Daniel doesn’t understand what’s going on. The obvious answer is “trauma.” And until one is willing to consider the possibility that we are actually immortal spiritual beings, that’s probably the best answer, and there are even workable therapies for that. Of course, if you just throw the person you are trying to help back into a traumatic environment, you aren’t going to get very good results.

    But the problem is that we experience some degree of trauma each and every time we die. So eventually we will have to implement a therapeutic strategy that is a bit more workable if we want to keep our heads above water, or even improve ourselves.

    So we have two big problems to solve on Earth: The first is to make this place more livable and less traumatic. The second is to implement a mental health technology that actually works. These are interrelated, as failure with solving the first problem makes the second almost impossible to implement.

  • The title attracted my attention, as death remains a very misunderstood subject in this modern world. We have had a better understanding of it for most of my lifetime, yet most of academic medicine has ignored that data.

    While the article does admit that death has a “spiritual” aspect, it treats the problem from a conventional Western-oriented perspective. Many people have always died alone, suddenly, or under emotionally trying circumstances. Even where hospitals are available, there is no guarantee that we will die in one. Hospitals, when it comes to ICUs and other higher-tech aspects of care, are the creation of wealthier people who have a lot to lose if they die in an uncontrolled manner. Most of us, I don’t think, really care that much.

    But for us to still understand death as some sort of finality to be absolutely avoided for as many years as possible is, today, an ignorant even irresponsible attitude to take. Death is a very real human problem. We all have things we want to accomplish in this body and in this lifetime. We have friends and people to take care of. We hate to think that one day we might suddenly leave all that behind, messy and unfinished.

    But we should realize, at least, that we will have another chance. That death isn’t THE end, but only the loss of a body, unfortunate or not. If we understood death (and life) more for what they really are, not as biological experiences but as spiritual experiences, we could prepare for both much better and find more happiness in the process.

    That we are immortal spiritual beings who DO NOT die is the last thing our rulers want us to become aware of. And thus I think it is the most high priority fact of life to become aware of. This whole website deals with how a class of doctors found a way to prey off some of us with a “diagnostic manual,” guaranteed insurance payments, and “treatments” that make us dependent on them or kill us. They are doing this because of how spiritually dead they are. Those of us who think it’s wrong need to become more spiritually alive. We need to do our own research, publish our own journals, and eventually take the whole field away from them. They will not soon give up. We should never give up, Why give up? We are immortal spiritual beings!

  • Read is being extremely patient with his political (oops – academic) opponents. To see this as anything other than a political battle at this point seems foolish to me. The criminals want a legal way to kill people. That’s all. I don’t think it is much more complicated than that.

  • I will restate my viewpoint on this, as it is an essential point for us, and something we have not yet reached good agreement on. The “anti-psychiatry” movement (as they would style us) has been attacking psychiatry from several different angles. We have won a few legal victories based on fundamental agreements concerning human rights and medical ethics. We have gotten almost nowhere, though, in getting them to stop (or rein in) their use of drugs.

    Our first and primary argument is that this is a “profession” that has demonstrated a total inability to police its own members as to ethical behavior and honesty. This argument is weakened, however, by the observation that numerous “professions” also have the same problem and that this is in fact a fundamental human problem.

    Our secondary argument – actually potentially more potent – is that psychiatry is essentially nonscientific. This argument separates psychiatry even from ordinary Medicine. It is a powerful truth, but one which is not that persuasive to many of us (the opposition). I, being a student of Scientology, have no problem making this assertion. But this is more difficult for people who go along with the medical model to some degree, such as being convinced that the brain is the organ of mental function.

    I can, from my perspective, see how the entire society – nearly an entire planet – has been convinced of a basic falsehood about ourselves: that we are not spiritual beings but mere animals. It is this basic fallacy that has helped psychiatry to endure in its defense of its own status as the “mental doctors” of the planet. From this perspective, many persons outside of psychiatry have contributed to an intellectual climate in which psychiatry has been welcomed rather than laughed off stage.

    This is the argument I keep pushing because I see it as the most important truth that we are overlooking as well as the most important element in psychiatry’s continuing power. Psychiatry sees us as animals with animal minds, and that is a large part of their justification for treating patients the way they do. The “anti-psychiatry” movement is not yet convinced that this basic assumption is incorrect, and I feel that weakens us and our arguments. We do still have the more basic arguments concerning basic medical ethics and human decency, but if we were more sure of our spiritual identities, it would strengthen our own resolve considerably.

  • The above is an example of a communication that has a lot of truth in it that psychiatrists and probably any academic would simply laugh at.

    If we actually seriously want to get through to members of this “profession” we will need to use civil language, even if it pains us to do so. I am not sure, however, that such a project is worth it.

    The arrogant defensiveness of people like Pies is perhaps more obvious than the mannerly and carefully worded retort by Aftab, but they both point to a level of “rightness” that is most commonly seen in the criminal mind, the narcissist, the psychopath. These are terms that – while totally defamatory – are in the lexicon of psychiatry and psychology, which is one reason I like to use them.

  • I feel that the recent emphasis on gender and critical theory (power relationships in everyday life) has confused the subject of abuse considerably.

    Abuse is one of those things that predates biology and sex. In its “lighter” forms it relies primarily on shaming a person, on degrading their essential sense of self-worth and power. In its heavier forms it specializes in delivering pain in various forms that accomplish a similar end. The purpose of abuse, generally, is to degrade the being into feeling that it is worthless, purposeless, hopeless, a thing not fully alive.

    Forced nudity is one way to abuse children who haven’t yet fully developed a sexual identity. But it works at any age. It is a very basic form of abuse and is widely practiced in institutions, prisons and even “normal” hospitals and to a lesser extent security check points like in airports. The excuse often given is “security.” This is a slippery slope that many societies can easily fall into. We are experiencing it here on this planet at this time.

  • This is a good example of how disabling these sorts of experiences can be, and of a problem we should have solved by now, but failed to. Not only does the average practitioner know nothing about the mechanism we call “triggering” but they have no real idea what underlies such experiences or how to remove that problem from the mind. If “mental health” professionals had bothered to figure this stuff out (others already have) they might still lose some people to disability, but they would also have some people who fully recover. The average person in the system today does not have the slightest hope of recovering and faces a lifetime of coping with the damage caused by these experiences. This is the great tragedy created by the greed and ignorance (and apathy?) of practitioners. It need not have turned out this way.

  • I am not relying here on mere theory or what seems most logical or consistent. We are looking for ways we can help people feel more free and happy. To the extent that this is a mental problem, we need a mental solution. If we insist that the mind is part of the body, we don’t get that solution.

    Workable mental therapies have only been developed by those who were willing to entertain the possibility that the mind is separable from the body. And that is because this is the more workable assumption, and is also more likely to be more true or actual. We see this phenomenon in near death experiences and are, perhaps, amused. But if we are only amused we have neglected the full ramifications of what this means to human life, thought, and psychology.

    A being can leave its body, see that body on the operating table (or wherever) and notice what the doctors are doing to it, what the nurses are doing and remember this experience as brilliantly or more so than they remember fully awake experiences. The mind, we find, is a separable energetic structure that can function and has function without a body, though much of it is indeed devoted to operating the body. When we treat the mind as an energetic structure that the being (patient) can learn to look at and handle, we get techniques which make people factually more able, happier, and so forth.

    So we should at least be discussing this on the theory level.

  • The fact is, though, that the mental health system includes a system of compulsion in cases that are acute and extreme. Therapists in many practices will never see these cases, but it is a part of the “mental health” experience, and is often harmful, per many people who have been through it and comment on forums like this one.

    I use the term “healing” broadly, as do many psychologists. The combining form “iatro” which is part of the word “psychiatry” also has this meaning. Many people who do spiritual work consider themselves healers and I know from my experience that there are purely mental conditions that do require something that could be called “healing.”

    I know there is a trend to apply “illness” only to physical phenomena, but this does not encompass all its traditional meanings. On the other hand, the modern concept of illness tends to be physical only, and this is exacerbated by a total denial of the existence of Spirit and with that, the concept that Spirit could be troubled in a way that would make it seem “ill.” Perhaps there should be a distinct word for spiritual conditions, but the main barrier remains the recognition of the existence of Spirit, and not exactly what to call it when it doesn’t feel well.

  • The problem is: The mind is NOT part of the body.

    What we see in our experience is our very close emotional connection with our body and its experiences of hunger, lust, activity, inactivity, getting poisoned, dying, etc. Many of us doubt that much of anything else is going on mentally but of course more is. We have dreaming, imagination, study, education, training, work, problem solving. Those are all mental (one could say spiritual) activities, some of which are very emotional and others much less so.

    In this modern poisoned world we are all exposed to toxins on a daily basis and suffer mentally and physically as a result of this. This could lead one to conclude that we all suffer from “mental illness” but this would be a correct conclusion based on incorrect assumptions. The fact is, we have all been exposed to certain “mental toxicities” that have created a baseline of mental distress in society that we accept as “normal.” One can be attacked as “deviant” from either being much more troubled by these mental attacks, or much less troubled by them. In a similar way, the truly physically well, now a minority among us, are seen as worthy of special study because they are so unusual. Of course, their physical health tends to support a more healthy mental attitude as well.

    The distinction between mind and body is often mentioned in these discussions, but remains an uncertainty for most people. As they are so closely connected in human experience, this is understandable, but regrettable. It results in endless circular conversations about how better body health can result in better mental health. Though this is a real relationship in human experience, it is technically incorrect. And that technical distinction blinds most of us from making any real progress in the field of mental health. I know of no certain way of clarifying this for others; they either come to realize or or they can’t.

  • I think science can and must confront this subject if it ever intends to move humanity forward.

    We have many good approaches to detecting spiritual action, and particularly in addressing spiritual memory in all its various aspects. Courtney Brown has pioneered a science-based approach to remote viewing and many others have been working along similar lines in their own fields. At this point it is clearly a matter of academic snobbery to keep this subject closed to scientific inquiry.

    If scientists can play around with concepts like multiple universes, neutrinos and qubits, then it can darn well begin to deal with everlasting life and the question of ultimate causality.

  • Is it really too much to ask an intelligent person after arriving at the conclusions that these people arrived at that they might be barking up the wrong tree? Is the possibility of spiritual existence really such a zero for them that no possible set of experiences could ever get them to consider it might be true?

  • At first is seems a bit brave that these neuroimaging experts would call out earlier studies as clinically useless. However, when we see at the end that all they do is beg for more funding, perhaps this makes more sense. I hate to be cynical about these people but…

    They have had over 50 years now to follow up on work that indicates that irrational emotional responses come from the triggering of mental pictures, and to discover for themselves the role the spiritual being plays in creating and paying attention to its own mental pictures. They have instead chosen to speak and write as if this information never existed. I can no longer give them any tolerance for their ignorance. They should have figured it out by now; they obviously have other fish to fry.

  • We can walk away from the term “mental health,” but what are you going to call it when you are feeling happy, productive, intelligent, connected? We can shorten the concept to “healthy” but I don’t see any good purpose to abandoning the concept of “mental health” if we at the same time abandon the concept of being healthy.

    In general, and in the case of the mind in particular, health is basically a subjective perception of wellness, completeness, or happiness. In that sense, it cannot really be reduced to a set of factors that a test can measure and arrive at an objective answer about.

    But mental health is more than a feeling. The being, through its mind, does more than just feel. This is one of the limitations that psychology has sought to impose on us. The being, through the mind, can solve problems, imagine, carry on lengthy conversations, read books, study and learn new skills, and all sorts of other things besides feel. Mental health includes all those mental skills, just just feeling well.

    “Mental health” when viewed from the position of a technical-minded medical doctor is so limited compared to what it really is. I don’t think we need to abandon the term, I think we need to take it back and expand it to its full range of meanings.

  • Wow. The woman I know is in almost the exact same physical condition.
    And her frustration with her situation is likewise upsetting to me.
    For me to know that this started with an emotional-spiritual cause that could have been addressed and handled but was not puts some sadness in my life that I could do without.
    Yet with me it is at least an informed sadness. My challenge now is not to discover what could have been done, but to discover ways to get others to realize that there is something they can do.

  • When I was very young, the word “health” had a positive connotation and was not being extensively used by corporate marketers for their own questionable purposes.

    Same with the phrase “mental health.” Per Google’s Ngram Viewer “mental health” did not exist as a phrase until the 1900s and did not start becoming popular until the 1950s (when I was born). Its usage peaked during the 1970s and has been at a median level since 1990.

    Then there is the expression “health insurance.” Oddly, the use of this term peaked during World War 2, up to the beginning of the Civil Rights era. I associate it, however, with “Obamacare.” The term “health care” did not take off until 1970.

    Today all these terms are apparently owned by Corporate Medicine. we get “health care” which is covered by “health insurance” and supposedly results in physical and “mental health.” Except it doesn’t. These marketers are taking us for a bunch of suckers, and a lot of us are indeed acting like a bunch of suckers.

    We don’t know what bodies really are or how they really function, so we really don’t know that much about body health. Same goes for the mind, except it’s much worse. So Corporate Medicine has taken advantage of these weaknesses to sell us a bill of goods about body health and particularly about mental health.

    I don’t want to trash the English language in order to rescue it from corporate marketers. I would prefer simply to insist that they are being dishonest and misleading in their use of these terms.

    “Mental health” in particular remains problematic, as there is a long history of people with something to hide and something to lose using “mental illness” as a way to get rid of their political enemies, even if they are close friends or family. It is less common to shoot a personal enemy to disable them, but it is a similar operation.

    I don’t believe that “environmental aspects of mental distress” are the most important issues in understanding real mental distress. But today (if not always) they are a much more important issue for society to deal with. That is because this issue reduces to a problem of criminal activity, which is the most basic problem that individuals, academics, societies, and governments have been troubled by and have been unable to deal with over long centuries of time.

    Ironically, criminal behavior does stem from mental illness. But I would be perfectly happy if that were the only mental illness we worried about and learned to treat successfully. The biggest problem facing the mental health community is the criminal behavior of practitioners and their accomplices. Until we can nail that one, why pretend we are helping people with mental health problems?

  • There are MANY approaches to mental health that avoid psychiatry and their toxic “theories” about human life and behavior.

    I would support any alternative to psychiatric “care.”

    But to actually slow down or halt the advance of psychiatry and its ideas is a whole other matter. We know already that any believable alternative to psychiatry will be fought and discredited. The operation to install psychiatrists (and doctors) as the arbiters of modern life rolls forward like a robot with terrifying monotony and disregard for human life. We must arm ourselves with knowledge and skills that can deal with this without becoming a new version of it. I don’t think it can be a traditional battle, war or revolution. We must grow strong enough to laugh in their faces in a way that will stop them in their tracks. A certain number of us must become simply invincible to their poisons. And eventually they will realize that are doing the wrong thing and stop. This they are almost certain will never happen (though they fear very rightly that it could!). We must be just as certain that it can happen.

  • This new discussion touches on many of the basic issues and problems connected with anyone who seeks to help another out. In so doing, he or she takes the role of “healer” (or helper) more or less forcing the other to admit to being “ill” or needing help.

    When a beggar walks up to me and asks for money and I give him some, while I can assume I have helped him to some degree, I dare not fool myself that I have healed him. If I interact with him in some other way, and later I see him again and he is happy and thriving and walks up to me to shake my hand to thank me, I can then be a little more certain that I’ve healed him. Yet in the end I should be humble enough to remember that I really only helped him decide to heal himself. That is the first barrier that any healer in this field must face.

    If I am a “professional healer” and someone is brought to me who is in obvious distress and I do something to relieve that distress, did I help the one in distress or the one who brought them to me because their distress was upsetting to them? When a doctor sets a fracture even though the patient never asked him to, then the patient heals (or, perhaps, fails to heal), what exactly occurred there, anyway? This is entire realm of concern for many ex-“patients” as they were not aware of ever asking for help and feel the “help” they got was destructive.

    If we can wade through these basic questions of what is help and healing, we still are left with the problem of the skill and exact intent of the healer. And the general agreement – at least on this website – seems to be that professional-level skills and noble intentions are often lacking in the “professionals” that many patients have interacted with.

    This speaks somewhat to the topic of this article: Should a condition of mental distress be seen as a disability? The meanings here become so exacting and intertwined with various legal definitions that I feel unqualified to give a proper answer. But clearly, the “disabled” have been granted access to certain legal remedies in recent years that the simply distressed cannot take advantage of. And to the extent that “treatments” are unsuccessful and the distress becomes a chronic problem, it begins to look more and more like a disability, even though this doesn’t make that much rational sense.

    In this way, we could see the willingness of the mental health community to get mental disorders treated as disabilities as a form of admission of failure. A person with a mental problem should not have to walk around thinking he or she is permanently disabled, yet this aligns with the actual experience of many such people.

    I know a woman who has been dealing with mental-emotional problems her entire life. Though in a perfect world she in theory could have been cured, this is not what happened to her. And though she works 40 hours a week at a real job, she has also developed obesity and other body problems to the point where she has been declared by a doctor to be actually disabled. She no longer has any hope of overcoming her mental conditions, and her physical problems now only add to her suffering. This is a failure of our “system” and I am sure not at all unique or special. And though I am convinced that a professional healer could have cured her long ago, and dug her out of any relapses, the average American – much less Indian or African – has nearly zero access to people that good. The “system” doesn’t aspire to be that good, even though it has that potential.

    So, from my point of view, a wide variety of factors have led us to this unhappy place. People with mere disorders that should be curable are being turned into disabled who can now hope for no better than to get some sort of compensating action from society because of their disability. Of course this whole “framework” does not promote a very hopeful attitude or productive approach for the mentally ill, but is does reflect the sad reality of our current condition.

  • The world needs a certain level of rationality to keep the game of life going. But insisting on totally logical thinking and zero emotionalism is going way overboard.

    While I don’t believe we need to surrender our lives and wills to The Creator, there is a basic level of madness about life on Earth that we must be willing to tolerate.

    I don’t want to surrender my life and will to a tyrant, either, which is the other extreme we are being asked to agree with. That goes way beyond my limits of tolerance.

  • I appreciate you commenting on this, Tina.

    Yes, the subject of “spirit” is extremely problematic! No two people seem to understand it the same way.

    The most basic part of my understanding of it is that we are (as personalities, or “ourselves”) immortal spiritual beings. This is difficult for most people, as they have no conscious memory of any other existence besides this life. But some children do have such memories, and some of those cases have been validated. And others have been regressed into past lives, or used similar techniques, and some of those cases have been validated as well. Those who do this work for a living would say that the therapeutic results from past life recall itself validates its reality. I agree with that.

    But once we are willing to think with this basic, what follows is the possibility that we have a long term memory of experience (I have been calling it “spiritual memory”) which we might be able to learn from. And indeed, from what I have studied, this is the case.

    For a little boy to remember being a fighter pilot 40 years ago (and that memory is validated) is one thing. But for the process of locating that memory to result in the lessening or cessation of violent nightmares about drowning in an enclosed space is therapeutic. This is a publicly known case, which is why I cite it here. There are MANY more such cases, as this reality has been used for therapeutic benefit for decades now.

    But we can extend our knowledge even further if we are willing to explore our pasts with more persistence. Dena Merriam’s memories of past lives extend over a thousand years on Earth, and are quite educative. Other researchers have explored much farther back, into our days Before Earth. The data gained in this way are amazing and highly illuminating. They have opened up whole new avenues of therapy, though these currently are only being used in a non-secular (religious) context.

    My point is that the mental health community – of all communities – should be aware of these things and willing to discuss them. It is one thing to decide “that’s not for me.” But it’s quite another to be totally clueless. The data are out there. As time wears on, and conditions on Earth worsen, cluelessness is becoming a poorer and poorer excuse.

  • Is “perfection” a Christian concept? I have heard it used now and then and not sure how you mean it here.

    I might be able to play the piano, which gives me an ability a lot of others don’t have. But to play a piece perfectly depends on my skill level, my willingness to practice, my dedication and other factors.

    To do a perfect job is a worthwhile aspiration, but to try to “be perfect” is folly. What does that even mean?

    I can’t speak for people who can’t see, or can’t hear, or have missing limbs. That would make life really tough! But I can’t play the piano, and I wish I could. I probably could still learn how if I wanted.

    Fact is, a blind person could learn to see (without functioning eyes) if he really wanted. But that would take a lot of work and dedication. I agree with the author that many “mental conditions” should be easier to remedy than blindness or deafness. So to categorize them both as the same sort of disability seems incorrect. But that doesn’t change the fact that a lot of people with depression wish it would go away, just like a lot of blind people wish they could see.

  • Though I find the prose a bit difficult at times, I see this article as a rational discussion of the issue. But for me it is not so much an issue regarding actuality but more one of public policy.

    If I can’t play the piano and want to, I can hire a piano teacher. If I can’t control my anxiety in certain situations and want to be able to, I cannot find a secular expert who can help me to acquire that skill. Psychiatrists will give me harmful pills and psychologists will give me CBT (or something they like better) which might or might not do any good. We don’t have any “experts” in the field who are really competent, at least not in the secular world.

    And regardless of how we treat these human problems in public policy, they will remain human problems until real experts arrive on the scene and actually handle those problems. Currently, all public policy does is cope with problems that never go away and grant certain favors to all the false “experts” that most stridently assert their competency. Public policy has never been good at solving problems and probably never will be. It’s current approach is to ignore the various brilliant solutions that already exist in favor of the careers of all the various incompetent “experts.”

    If we bring Spirit into the conversation, as I always like to do, and contemplate what any spiritual being should be natively capable of, we find not one single being on Earth (or anywhere else) today who is totally “able.” In that sense, we are all “disabled” and the various mechanisms we put in place to help us through our days are the product of our sense of how far we have to go to prop ourselves up before the expense greatly exceeds the return. Fully able beings (to give an often-experienced example) would not require traffic lights, whether they included accompanying audio signals and cub cuts or not.

    We live in a world of disabled beings, and the big question of the day is whether we should resign ourselves to our various disabilities or attempt to overcome them. Public policy, then, tends to reflect our personal attitudes in regard to these matters. I really don’t care that much how we choose to cope with all our numerous disabilities. I do, however, think we should aspire to rid ourselves of them, and not succumb to them in apathetic resignation.

  • Well, I am surprised you have come to such a materialistic conclusion after studying Hinduism! You may believe as you wish, but if you ever run into any real past life phenomena, I hope you recognize it for what it is! I see the idea that Spirit is the ultimate cause of all physical phenomena as much simpler than the circular idea that biology – obviously a created technology – somehow manifests the knowledge necessary to create itself! Past life recall, at least, has been studied in academia and I think the results are convincing. Of course, many others have looked into this phenomenon, too – as it is quite real – and arrived, usually, at similar conclusions. Furthermore, those conclusions are useful, as they have led to workable mental and spiritual therapies, even a solution to the problem of psychopathy.

  • Seeing as you have delved quite a bit to Hinduism, you have undoubtedly been exposed to the phenomenon of past life recall. How do you explain this phenomenon?

    It seems to me that by far the simplest explanation is that the being carries its experiences from lifetime to lifetime through many bodies. For me, this is the jumping off point. There is much more to learn once you decide that it is OK to ask a person what they remember.

  • As of the evening of 21 Oct, the Psychiatric Times website is coming up blank for me. I imagine it will reappear at some point…

    I am not surprised at the content of this “opinion piece.” I would tend to characterize it as a propaganda piece, and a forthright statement of what the psychiatric establishment plans to achieve, not over the next 30 years, but as soon as humanly possible.

    And while it should be spoken against, as so many freedom-loving writers have tried to do over and over for near-on a century now, it should also be confronted and fully understood.

    I know that when I state my own understanding of such matters, I often leave many behind, but I write here in the interest of including a full range of viewpoints, not to be popular.

    Dr. Yager failed to mention certain other aspects of future life on Earth, as they are not part of the current propaganda story. But I trust it will not be too much longer before we are openly dealing with extraterrestrial societies, and most of them, from what I gather, follow a similar social pattern to that outlined in Dr. Yager’s piece. In other words, this pattern is not new, but on the contrary is very very old. And it has been the hope of many Earth-bound visionaries that we, finally, could come up with something better.

    And in fact (in my opinion anyway) we have. It started when we really began to focus on human rights. And with that came the concept of free (rather than closely controlled) markets. These visions led, at least in the United States, to a period of widespread, if unstable, comfort. And in that period things got quiet enough for a while for some great strides forward in the field of mental health and spiritual repair to take place. These advances were, of course, fought against by those who felt threatened by them. That this opposition was based on very irrational ideas was obvious to some, and is only becoming more so. But it also had a lot of wealth, power and influence behind it, and on the surface it seems to be winning out.

    For example, the writer of this article seems totally unaware of the advances made into the spiritual aspects of life and mental health, including the development of many new and robust technologies for working with individuals and groups (even animals) in trouble. In my own vision of our future, these technologies are widely known and used. And psychiatry, as it exists today, is gone. They had their chance and they blew it.

    In my opinion, there are two main reasons why Dr. Yager’s vision of the future persists and in fact is being actively worked towards.

    First, it is the accepted pattern of every “modern” techno-space society that has ever existed. It is brutally dystopian, but is capable of great persistence. Most of us consider those avidly supporting such a vision to be psychopathic. Nothing like turning their own concepts against them!

    Second, accomplishing this vision would “let us in” to the wider space society. At least some of its proponents think so. I am not so sure of that. I don’t think that wider society ever plans to let us in on an equal footing with the older groups. They just need a carrot to dangle in front of Earth’s almost-oligarchs.

    Yes, please, do away with psychiatry! But don’t replace it with the pat-a-cake and maudlin ideas of the New Left psychologists! We can do better than that, and we deserve better than that. We are the people of Earth! We are the people who still believe in basic human freedoms and basic human rights. We may be the old rebels, but we can be the new leaders if we stay true to the principles that made us strong.

  • Hello Jody R! This is Larry. I think that if you are interested in this subject, you should do more research on it. There is lots of evidence for spiritual reality. Of course this “reality” is not physical! So you will not find ordinary physical objects to study, but it can be studied like we study energy phenomena using meters, or by communicating with it directly. We are spirits, so when we communicate it is actually spirit-to-spirit usually via various physical media. If this whole subject upsets or annoys you, I’m sorry. You don’t have to study it if you don’t want to. But don’t dismiss it as a non-subject just because you don’t know that much about it.

  • You are welcome to return to that way of life if that’s what you really want. But I do want to point out that the indigenous peoples have not been able to fend off the incursion of a techno-space society onto their planet, which indicates there could be a chink in their armor.

    We need to be realistic here. People like techno-space societies because that is what they are used to. It is possible we can re-imagine this one to be much more humane than past ones have been. But if we don’t learn to play this game well, we will become enslaved by it. I am quite certain of that. Nothing we can do can change that now. The planet could have 1/2 a billion people on it and be clean as a baby’s butt, and we’d still have to deal with the techno-space problem; it is all around us.

  • I hope it is obvious to all what is missing in this study: That we are talking here about perceptions about the future leading to anxiety (instead of effective action).

    Both the Climate Change issue and various related ones, like pollution, are being driven by propaganda campaigns, not lived experience. And this study measures the effects of those campaigns, not that experience.

    What is most troubling to me is that the people creating these campaigns, being professionals in what they do, probably intended the results that were measured: Anxiety instead of effective action.

    At this point, I think the most effective action would be to shut off the campaigns! They aren’t achieving a better life on Earth and are degrading our mental health. Obviously, a different approach is needed, if we really care about these issues for what they are, and not only for how effectively they can be used to scare people.

  • This appears to be a diatribe typical of socialist or communist ideology.

    If you borrow ten bucks to make a pitcher of lemonade, you are in some sense a “capitalist.” The word has been tossed around until it is nearly meaningless.

    This woman appears to be complaining about psychopathic executives, of which there are far too many. They exist in businesses, in the professions, and in government. They exist in democracies, in socialist countries, and in communist countries. They are the scourge of this earth, and in fact, of this universe. And you will never get rid of them by raving about “capitalism!”

    Psychology has served many masters. Many of those stories live in ignominy. To handle these mistakes we must do more than rave. There is much to learn, both in thinking and in doing.

    Do we really want to go back to living like “our ancestors?” Could we? The modern world requires organizations, and organizations require hierarchies. I have lived in one where all were paid the same, so I know it is not impossible to humanize modern society. I just know that it has rarely succeeded. Great wisdom is needed to make that really happen.

  • This is an important communication.

    The “experts” tend to dwell on problems with drug studies, withdrawal, or living conditions.

    The fact that the psyche is ignored in psychiatry is seldom pointed out, yet to me is the most decisive condemnation of it.

    This observation opens the door to a new approach to the problem, and in fact to life.

  • I did not see this article as an attack on a “community.”

    We are talking about moving these chemicals out of the existing therapy community that has been using them into a larger “community” that does not share the same standards of care and concern. The wider “mental health” community is already broken, and I see no way that a few new medicines will somehow save it.

  • I am not speaking about the effects of drug use per se. I am speaking about the “mindset” and lack of awareness that has allowed so many new chemicals into our bodies, to say nothing of the traditional ones. The mindset is way too mechanistic. There are many higher healing forces that need to be brought to bear on the human situation. Psychedelics are just another distraction along that path.

  • I could argue, though, that enlightenment and mental health aren’t necessarily that different, and that neither belongs in the hands of an MD.

    It was a huge mistake to hand over this sector of human health to medical doctors in the first place, and the sooner that mistake can be acknowledged and corrected, the better.

  • The problem, though, is that you are talking about brain science, not psychology! Don’t you get that there could be a difference? Don’t you believe in any sort of spiritual reality in human life? There is abundant evidence for it. And that such a reality would be the higher factor in human “mental health” should likewise be apparent.

  • The problem remains in thinking that we need ANY drugs to achieve a “healthy brain.” The brain is part of the body and we already know that body health has to do with nutrition, sleep, exercise and light exposure.

    The mind is not resident in the brain, so thoughts and emotions are a whole other realm of health.

    Some think that the fact that some of these substances have been used traditionally make them OK. We venerate tradition, yet how much do we benefit from it? If we still think we need drugs to feel better after all these centuries demonstrating that this isn’t the solution, then how much progress have we really made?

  • All I can add to this is that a lot of people (not a ton, but at least a handful) have studied the psychopath, which is a personality type (for lack of a better description). You can read about or listen to their conclusions in various online sites and videos, and they have also written books.

    So this is a studied subject, but not a well-known subject. These people are like chameleons. They will pick an ideology that seems appropriate to the times or their audience and lean into it. But they don’t believe in it. That’s my main point. Yesterday it was Eugenics. Today it is … chemical imbalance in the brain. Next year it could be something else.

    These people are terrified by life and very conflicted. But given the proper opportunities they can and do take leadership positions because they crave such positions. Some burn out quick once they are “at the top” but others hang on for years and somehow make a career of it. But you will not find any broad improvements resulting from their decisions.

  • This is a well-crafted piece of writing, if (for me at least) a bit over-long. I acknowledge that some courage was involved in revealing the author’s own involvement in that scene for a period of time.

    The points and conclusions of this article are sensible from the viewpoint of anyone who has been involved in the mental health field and actually wants it to achieve its (often only implied) goal of an improved level of sanity on Earth.

    For me, unlike some of my associates, this even includes my sympathy for the decriminalization process. However, those same associates remind me of where that process has taken us with other drugs: to normalization of recreational use, resulting in chronic use (addiction) in some individuals and the various social challenges that result from that.

    We should also remind ourselves that abuse – particularly sexual abuse – in therapy has never been limited to abuse of drugged or drug-dependent clients. It has been a constant problem with therapists which I see as reflecting a larger problem in society, as therapy is not the only social context where sexual abuse exists.

    My current feeling about this whole subject is that if we could get Mr. Hall’s attitude about therapy to prevail, therapy would become a safer and possibly more productive human activity. But it would still fall short of achieving the ultimate goal of improved “mental health” that we all, presumably, seek.

    That is because, to state things crudely, the New Age psychedelic drug pushers are “onto something.” And that thing is spirituality.

    As with every sphere of human knowledge that contains a kernel of truth, the sphere of the spiritual has suffered from continual “abuse” and distortion. I have seldom seen the approach to “spiritual healing” taken by those who I consider actually quite insane as well-recounted as Mr. Hall does in this article. The whole concept of “surrender” and “ego-destruction” is part and parcel of many New Age platitudes, yet has no real conceptual foundation or workability.

    I see the New Age as a curated and carefully maintained pathway into the hearts and minds of people who are too smart or creative or “conscious” to go along with the soggy and cynical teachings of secular materialism. It promotes things like UFOs and ET contact not only because those subjects appeal to the imagination of New Agers but because they are factual. Same with reincarnation. Yet layered on top of all that are frankly bizarre pseudo-scientific theories about brain function and “multiple dimensions of reality.” They also have their own religious beliefs based on a multitude of stories derived from (probably) actual ET contact. As if the Bible should not be trusted while ETs should be! Who do we think the Bible’s “angels” really are??

    So, while I would be happy to see psychedelics taken out of the medicalization pipeline – on any pretext, really – what about mental health?

    I will only briefly restate my basic premise: Real advances in mental health have been blocked – first and foremost – by those I consider as the most insane posing as arbiters of sanity or “correct thought” in this society at this time. Thus those who seek real mental health have two major initial tasks: First, to get themselves and their colleagues totally out of cooperation with the ideologies and methods promoted by the demented “experts.” And second, to seek out and fully explore the areas that have long been deemed fraudulent or off-limits by those same “experts.” Great revelations will greet anyone willing to take these steps. And we will advance, possibly, closer to our real goal of more sanity on this planet.

  • One can view these various approaches to life as “ideologies” but I see them as personality types.

    And the criminal personality type chooses war, terror and indiscriminate killing as his preferred approach to life, then wraps it all up in an “ideology” and tries to sell it to some audience desperate for answers.

    The trick is to keep that personality type out of power. And it is a trick! No one yet has totally perfected how this could be accomplished.

  • Given the track record of “professionals” in this field, I would be suspicious.

    Though a global welfare state would in theory reduce individual suffering, it would also result in these “professionals” being better-paid in many locations where today they struggle to compete with traditional medicine and other approaches that may, in fact, be more workable.

    I can’t believe they want much more than a more secure position for themselves in a future world where the general population starts to turn against the widespread use of drugs to “cure” everything.

    These folks are always trying to think ahead and anticipate the next cool way to convince us they still know what they are talking about, and thus save their sorry asses from being abandoned as a worthless bunch of quacks.

    If they really believed in personal and societal health, they would also be talking about the spiritual aspects of health, and not simply advocating for global health insurance.

  • I don’t agree, either, that we should target “capitalism.” It you have ever saved money or contributed to a 401k, you’ve been a “capitalist.”

    I likewise don’t think that the particular economic or political system in vogue at the moment has much bearing on how this system went down the toilet.

    But neither do I believe this was due to our “biologically inferior human nature.”

    Indeed, it is the non-biological aspect of human life that make it so attractive. It is true, though, that the biological aspect of human life makes it confusing. The solution to that, though, is simply to unconfuse people. Simple. Not easily done, however.

    But if you do successfully travel down that road, you might realize, on the one hand, that we have had a very long time to get as messed up (confused) as we are today, and that on the other hand, some got a lot more messed up (confused) than others. The ones who somehow came up with the short end of that stick we call “psychopaths.” And they push the rest of us down towards their level of confusion, and succeed or not to varying degrees.

    So, yes, with the help of the criminally insane, socialisms have seldom worked out very well for very long. And likewise, systems based primarily on capitalism also have massive flaws. And like the battered wife who does not find relief until she entirely ends the relationship, instead of hoping that somehow he will see the light and get better, we need to end our relationship with the psychopaths that exist around us and let them fall to the levels that they actually exist at. If we did not believe all their deceitful puffery, they would not have the power that belief in their lies gives them.

  • This is a very carefully-prepared article, as is Robert’s standard.

    I could only make it through Part One, however. The detail in Part Two was too minute for me!

    That these payments were so easy to discover, and thus done with a brazen arrogance, one could say, indicates to me how entrenched and confident this industry has become. In our modern society, drugs are a perfect money maker, and even more so with psych drugs, as you can always blame any bad effects of the drugs on the patients.

    How many people today know with any certainty that the mind exists independently of the brain, and that above the mind exists an immortal spiritual being? Most people today, quite to the contrary, are totally convinced that the reverse is true. Thus, to them, the ONLY way out of a recurring or chronic mental problem must be through the use of drugs. While to the confirmed (and educated) dissenters, there is NO WAY that drugs could have a direct impact on mental state, but only indirect impacts, through the being’s close association with a body.

    Though it seems morally necessary to report what amounts to brazen corruption in this industry, in other industries these kinds of relationships between manufacturers and end users are the norm. When it is a car or a shoe or an automation component, it seems normal if not useful to have end users of these products publicly state their experiences using them. Manufacturers openly sponsor conferences and provide perks to their presenters. So when we “expose” this kind of behavior in this industry, the general public reaction could amount to a big “So what?”

    It seems to me our big challenge now is to convince the general public, if not at least practitioners, that an industry that provides products used in the healing arts is not on the same level as an industry that produces equipment or industrial chemicals. That the healing arts are something very different; that they deal with forces that go way beyond the material ones we learn about if we study molecular biology.

    In a world that worships materialism and views people as mere animals, any attempt to return some level of moral awareness to the field of the healing arts (much less to other areas like politics or law) will fall on largely deaf ears. These people have given up, in some significant way, on the whole concept of moral boundaries, just as they have given up on religious belief and other “higher” human pursuits.

    We are blocked in our efforts by the exact mental and emotional deficiencies that the healing arts should be helping us overcome, yet captured, must never be overcome. If the mainstream healing industries were to embrace the higher truths of their own field, their institutions would tend to dissolve, based as they are on lies. If they cannot see their way towards an entirely new vision for their place in society, which would involve a serious devaluation of materialism and a significant elevation of the spiritual, then they can never serve their intended purpose, and the population will continue to slide into greater and greater sickness until the industry itself can no longer remain profitable, at which point it will collapse.

    Though this planet may be fated to follow such a course, I prefer to hold out for an alternative way that might be a bit less disastrous. But it will entail a proper revisiting of the whole question of Spirit, what it is and its role in human (and all) life. I just don’t see any way around that.

  • I don’t know Peter or his work that well. But obviously he is someone who lives within the world where drugs are seen as an important part of healing bodies from all sorts of maladies.

    Well, maybe they should be, but what about psychiatry? Why the heck is psychiatry using drugs at all?

    So while yet another story detailing how corrupt these people are is interesting in some ways, I feel that it is time to move on and start looking at what these long years of neglect of the psyche have missed.

    Though some should argue that perhaps I should move on, I would again like to urge more people who feel they have some skin in this game to step up and take a good look at the basics. These include the matter of how these discussions can easily distract us from more urgent matters. And those more urgent matters include the very realistic observation that this planet, with its modern pressures and technical advancements, is rapidly going to hell.

    Our subject (whether you call it “mental health” or “spiritual freedom”) plays a vital role in whether things get better or continue to get worse. We need to keep that in mind. We aren’t indulging in horticulture or talent contests. The future of mankind is teetering, and mankind is noticing!

    Through a recent friendship, I have been exposed to some popular material that people watch on TV. In a million different ways, the writers and performers are all screaming “we are all going crazy!” And the general public seem to be responsive to this. Are we who have devoted our lives in one way or another to actually doing something about this going to realize that we have to do a lot more than calling out people for doing the wrong thing? We have to figure out what the right thing to do is, and make it the thing to do!

    Yes, drug trials should not be distorted to allow unsafe and ineffective drugs onto the market. But what are we going to do about all those people who have done that, thus compromising their moral integrity to keep a job or whatever? And what are we going to tell them to do instead? Factually, those people need guidance from others who have somehow managed to maintain a higher degree of integrity in their lives. Are we ready to step up to the plate and do that?

  • While any reform that might result in more safe and effective drugs getting approved and used and fewer (or no) unsafe and ineffective drugs getting approved and used would be valuable, this whole topic is virtually meaningless without looking at the larger context.

    First, we have drug companies and others turning “medicine” into a profit-making profession instead of a healing profession. As long as that situation continues, what chance does an individual have of getting better when they go to a doctor?

    Second, we have “doctors” who focus entirely on bodies, leaving out all other relevant factors, of which there are many. When someone gets hurt or sick they should get an ethics interview to see if they are connected to a suppressive person (such as a doctor!). The current system will never stomach that much emphasis on actually getting well!

    Being a corrupt government official has become the norm, as has the practice of bribing or blackmailing government officials. In such a degraded moral climate, how can we expect any of these parties to actually care about those who approach them seeking help?

    People involved in medicine (“body health”) or psychiatry (“mental health”) are in a perfect position to see that these systems don’t work and need to be changed. But they are in a terrible position to have any real concept of how much change is needed. And so “reforms” never are enough to bring real change.

    The concept of “open science” is a bold new idea already being applied in some other areas of study. But if Science never opens itself up to the areas it should study but has chosen to neglect, then nothing much will come of this concept. You don’t effect change by looking at the situation from the same viewpoint that resulted in the problem in the first place. These people need a whole new viewpoint on what science should be and how life really works.

  • The intro using alcohol was very witty!

    No kidding we need a “paradigm shift!”

    But I am unsatisfied with what the authors propose, because, from my point of view, their own paradigm about how life works has not yet shifted enough!

    Their “new” paradigm still implies that people only live once, are basically super-evolved animals, and just need to learn better how to get along. From what I have learned, this is basically incorrect. So the new paradigm, though obviously more humane, would not make that many people feel better. Maybe 25%?

    My own paradigm starts with these “facts of life:” A person is a spiritual being who has lived many multiples of lifetimes in many different places. A person brings all that experience into this life, although usually as forgotten experience. The body is a sophisticated animal which could in theory survive without a human personality associated with it, but rarely does. Thus, the body can be seen to have a “mind of its own” to a certain degree. It also brings experiences from former lifetimes forward into this one, again in a forgotten state. The difficulties a person may encounter in this lifetime are thus an amalgamation of this life’s experiences and the (usually) forgotten experiences of two beings, one an animal-type being and one a human-type being. This can make healing a difficult process for some beings, and likewise requires a well-trained healer or facilitator, should that be desired. The key to unraveling each individual’s personal riddle lies with the person themselves, and how much they are willing to learn about life and about the techniques that have been developed so far to help people heal. This is usually done by learning some of those techniques and then trying them out on someone else.

    Healing from psychic trauma of any sort is not a voyage for the faint of heart. But done by steps that are relatively easy to confront, it can eventually be achieved. Good luck to those who try! For those who don’t feel up to this, just get enough rest, good food and a calm environment. Likely, you will get better if you can just get those things. This is the greatest challenge on Earth today! Those basics of rest, food, environment are unobtainable for so many!

  • Hi Jack, it’s Larry (small L looks like big I).

    Your opinion seems fairly sensible to me.

    Though some insist it should or must be otherwise, we come to this world by numerous different paths and with different sets of abilities. To the extent that human society needs to be organized, some sort of “class system” becomes inevitable. And though it would be most wise and workable to let each individual each lifetime rise to a position where they can serve best, there has always been a tendency for those with more responsibility and control to save their positions for their own family members. This is unfortunate and gives criminals a wedge to pit “classes” against each other.

    Psychiatry is very much a part of this game. And many of us can see this clearly, as they interact with us a lot more than others who are participating in various criminal activities. The situation is truly appalling to me, brought up as I was to trust these people.

  • It isn’t just psychiatrists who may come from privileged backgrounds. I did, too. But isn’t the American Dream to rise to the level of the privileged? Or descend to it?

    I don’t think privilege has as much to do with a person’s character as some would like to believe. But to the extent that privilege engenders a fear of “ordinary” people, it can cause a separation to occur which could lead to an unrealistic view of life. The truly evil rely on that separation and the “class wars” that it can bring about.

  • In the context of the work of Jung, Campbell and other similar explorers, this argument against the ways of psychiatry is well-expressed.

    To me, it gives psychiatry too much benefit of the doubt. To my mind, they have gone way beyond proving themselves simply ignorant and culturally arrogant. They have shown themselves over and over to be greedy, selfish liars, spewing fake theories on purpose simply to impress us and not because they really believe. They have shown themselves quite willing to be tools of the state, including cooperation with some of the most suppressive governments on Earth.

    It would be nice to think that a swift kick in the pants to remind them of their longer tradition as “mystic” healers and spiritual savants would be enough to awaken in them a more sincere desire to help others. I don’t see that ever happening. As healers, they are the most broken of the broken, the most insane of the craven. I don’t see that they deserve any respect at all from us as a profession. There are good individuals among them, yes. And thank goodness for them.

  • Tell your friend that the internal controls built into the body are a whole different subject than attempts by others to control the internal functions of the body. On top of that, most bodies must be fed to stay alive.

    Having an “anti-drug” approach is basically a rejection of the “take a pill to make you feel better” message of modern societies.

    And though I consider that I make wiser food choices, it is unlikely that I avoid all external chemicals, as they are so ubiquitous now.

    I don’t consider myself fundamentally a “drug-induced being.” I consider myself an immortal spiritual being who, in choosing to be associated with a biological body, must learn to contend with the body’s various chemical vagaries.

  • The only other activities I’ve seen come close to the arts are other forms of play: performing arts, non-competitive games, things like that. They key is to create a safe space that encourages self-expression. Of course, we can’t live like that 24/7, but we should all be able to have some time we devote to that, and that is “therapy” for most people.

  • OK! Well, I’m really glad you are thinking about this stuff.

    Just want to point out again, though, that “spiritual” is about something, and that thing is Spirit. And several people who have looked at this subject have concluded that Spirit (and spiritual beings) are immortal (they exist outside of time).

    And some people thought to ask spiritual beings (each other -as we are all spiritual beings) what they could remember. And different researchers found different ways to validate these memories. So, even though they are “only memories” this gives us a history of life and the universe from a spiritual point of view.

    Spirit and its ability to “remember” provides a continuum for living things that helps explain many aspects of life, including mental and emotional difficulties. The stories we get from spiritual memory challenge our teachings about evolution, the brain being “hard wired,” where religion comes from, and where humans come from. In my view it is long past time for those teachings to be challenged. They were inadequate and now we know why.

  • Everything is neurological? Who told you this?

    You are quite aware that people of ill intentions have been interested in psychology for a long time. Well, those guys are the same ones who are trying to convince us that it’s all in the brain. So, if you really think you have a neurological (brain) problem, then see a neurologist.

    The psyche has been defined and has been studied scientifically. Even a few psychiatrists and psychologists have been involved in this!

    Science has the option of using different models for the same phenomena, then by experimentation determining which model predicts behavior the best.

    In the model I believe is the most accurate, the psyche is an immortal spiritual (non-physical) being. Though the human situation is a bit more complex than that, my point is: Why is psychology studying neurology? If someone wants to study the brain, they should study neurology. If someone wants to study the psyche, they should study psychology.

    It makes sense to me.

  • This becomes a problem of circular logic. Many writers and commenters here have pointed this out.

    I have never seen the specific term “social cognition” used before, so this is an interesting slant on the problem that will possibly appeal to other researchers who are more familiar with these terms and concepts.

    Of course, my major frustration continues to come from the focus on brain function and this-life causation. These factors both have much less importance than the field currently assigns to them. Not zero importance, just less. There are many other factors also at play. I have seem many credit Jung with at least being cognizant of these. Too bad that the fuller development of Jung’s ideas has been so thoroughly ignored.

  • It is good to see this contrary opinion on this subject!

    I have exposed myself to hours of glowing interviews about psychedelic experiences, so I know that the marketing efforts for these drugs have reached a high level of sophistication.

    The target audience is more or less obviously New Agers. These are, normally, moneyed individuals with a fervent, if flawed, understanding of the spiritual. They are ready to grow spiritually, yet have that characteristic reluctance to devote the time and resources required to get it right, and, like most of us, hope for a pill or ritual that will help things along.

    Any drug in the hands of the mental health system has resulted in some sort of disaster. So that side of the argument is very clear.

    The societal impact of decriminalization, legalization, and normalization of these drugs is more difficult to assess. It is unprecedented in my lifetime that so many have striven for the barriers to the use of a whole family of extremely psychoactive drugs to be lowered or removed. It’s not that criminalization of these drugs have served society that well. But that doesn’t mean that decriminalization will be better!

    We know that the normalization of the use of drugs in the mental health system has led to widespread off-prescription use of these drugs. We can assume the same pattern will continue.

    I am anti-drug in my basic approach to life. Others still want to see modern drugs as some sort of triumph of science. I am not so sure. They were developed in the absence of a full understanding of life and human beings, and so suffer from that ignorance. I sometimes wish we could start the whole process over again, this time with all the doctors at least as well trained concerning the spiritual side of life as I have been. When reformers advocate for a fundamental shift or change in approach, they are not kidding. The current approach really does not work. And now we want to legalize a whole new class of very potent drugs for general use in society? I don’t see that going well.

  • This is a great personal story, and also informs us of the current level of awareness of possibly most of the people we live and work around.

    My personal interpretation is that so many people have been beaten down by their own experiences that they have lost hope of ever finding a way out. They believe – as they are told over and over – that no one really understands the mind and thus it is impossible to heal it.

    This is a lie. I hope that more people, as we move forward, will realize that there is more that can be understood about all this than those who hover over us (in fear that we will find out) want us to believe.

  • Sam speaks from personal experience, I believe. More personal experience than I have.

    I belong to a “human group” too. But that group taught me about the existence of something that very few other groups ever talk about. In ordinary lingo it is commonly referred to at a psychopath.

    My group has methods for detecting and handling such people. We would prefer to be totally open in our membership policies, but this one is pure poison, so we act to keep them out. Not many other groups even try to do this, or they wait until it is too late and the damage is already done.

    Of course there are good people in psychiatry and psychology. Some of them realize their mistake and leave (Kelly Brogan) and some stay in and try to exert a humanizing influence (Peter Breggin). But all of them have a hard time, per reports submitted to websites like this one, because the group is dominated by a criminal element.

    As much as some would like to leave “politics” behind, it is a part of life; inescapable. So best to know the real situation and confront it. Yes, it is “complicated.” But it is also simple: In the absence of psychopathy people of good will do OK. In it’s presence they become sick or upset, until they come to realize what is really happening. Our challenge is to recognize what is really happening, and decide what to do about it. Staying totally away from psychiatry IS a valid choice at this time.

  • It is true that we could get by very well without this concept of “mental disorder.”
    But things will happen to people and they will reach for words to describe it.

    I recently witnessed a woman read a request from her supervisor to “pick up the pace.” Her reaction was to burst into tears. What are you going to call that? Does this mean she has a “mental disorder?” I would never tell her that. But I would also hope that she could do something to feel less intimidated by her supervisor. So I think the way doctors and others use these concepts is more important than the concepts themselves. I would never tell this woman to go to a doctor or therapist to “get treated.” Yet I imagine others are sent away for reactions much less dramatic than this one.

  • What did Alice Miller have to say about this? Hubbard understood, as well, that there is a reluctance “built in” to the human psyche regarding the whole subject of the spirit.

    My ending question was basically rhetorical, though. Psychology studies the psyche and psychiatry is supposed to heal it. This is a website about those subjects. So let’s talk about the psyche on this website!

  • It is true that that academic studies of paranormal phenomena are very reserved and – you could say – conservative in tone and verbiage. My point is that “science” CAN go there! They – as an institution – just don’t want to. There has been a lot of work done by non-academics in these areas which academics, of course, will tend to characterize as “unscientific.” This is because there are definite and real blocks in the human psyche to unearthing the truth about itself.

    I am happy to live in a time when a large quantity of that truth has been discovered. But frustrated by the human barriers that exist to studying the subject.

  • Of course, but I should make note of the fact that there are a few academics (“scientists”) who ARE researching the paranormal. One group known best to me is the Division of Perceptual Studies at the University of Virginian School of Medicine. So, it’s not that these subjects cannot be studied scientifically, it’s that most of science has not been permitted to study these subjects.

    I don’t think the answer is to let “the church” back into the scientific discussion. I think the answer is to expand the scientific discussion into fields that “science” has relegated to the purview of religion. For me, this transition has already been made, but for most people, definitely not!

  • This effect has been known about at least since the publication of Dianetics in 1950. We are only still struggling with this today because of where it leads if you follow the clues. Psychiatry and most of psychology do not want to go there, so have been thoroughly ignoring the “subconscious mind” since Freud (or whoever came earlier) started talking about it.

    If you follow the clues, by the way, you discover that the earliest traumas tend to be the most deeply buried and thus hold the most power over a person. By 1950 is was known that these extended to fetal trauma, perhaps even including conception. Pulling that string led to the discovery of “past deaths” (hey, dying can be pretty traumatic!) which then led to the discovery of past lives, the immortal spirit, and its long and bizarre history.

    We could be discussing traumas that occurred millions of years ago if we just opened the door and followed that hallway to where it leads. But I have yet to see one person on this forum willing to take that step. Why not?

  • OK. Yet another thoughtful person realizing that we aren’t there yet, that the problem is more complex than neurons misfiring, and that our “model of mental illness” is deplorable.

    But this thoughtful person hasn’t bothered to look around a bit and be curious enough to wonder, “is anyone else working on this problem?” And if so, “what models do they use?”

    Because the answer is YES! And I’ll give you a hint of what model is more workable: One that actually attributes psychological phenomena to the psyche (loosely, the Spirit)! And one that respects each person as a spiritual being regardless of their level of difficulty or confusion in handling their current environment (which is often very challenging).

    Psychiatry, and psychology to a lesser degree, dropped studying the psyche for irrational if not stupid reasons which included things like greed and lust for power. Reformers should recognize that, too! It’s not that everyone has had such a difficult time finding their way; it is that so many were purposely avoiding it!

    Good data about the psyche began to be available in the 1950s (and probably earlier). It was offered to academic people who totally rejected it. And that has been their attitude, to their eternal shame, up to and still including the present. If you’re going to discuss this problem at the level of theory, why don’t you? Include, at least, concepts of psyche in the discussion! They DO have something to do with psychology, you know!

  • I don’t believe that the “mental health” system has no understanding of the role of domestic violence and abuse in the lives of their patients. I believe that it understands the situation very well: The purpose of the system is to silence the abused woman (or child or man in some cases) so that the abuser can go on with his (usually, his) life untroubled.

    I believe that this is a very big reason the whole system was set up in the first place, and that all the major players know this perfectly well and cooperate to keep it operating in this manner. Of course it has no interest in healing the victims, and so treats the “mentally ill” as prisoners, as people who are simply disobedient.

    Underneath this is the general fear of anyone operating at the level of psychopath of being discovered and having his “fun” little games brought to an end. This fear has led to much worse systems (if you can imagine such) than the current “mental health” system, and will continue to result in such systems until there are enough clear-minded and courageous people to bring that insanity to an end.

  • I know many think as you do, and that I and “my people” are swimming against a strong current.

    But we see ways to combine the subjective with the objective that seem to work for most people who have tried them.

    A spiritual ability, like, say, going stably exterior, is subjective from the observer’s point of view, but not from the point of view of the person going exterior!

    That said, taking definite steps with definite end phenomena does not guarantee “equal results.” Just compare two people who both took all the same classes in college and got all-A’s. Will they have the same personalities, enjoy the same jobs, have the same friends and family? Of course not. So to me, saying that each person is unique is a lot different than saying you can follow a spiritual path through several definite steps and get a lot out of it that is meaningful to you.

  • I’ve seen the AMA described as a “trade union for doctors.”

    Most professionals like doctors want to be on the side that is winning, even of that side is anti-human!

    It is charitable to say that doctors behave the way they do because they really don’t know how to make people well. However, I am often led to the less charitable conclusion that they don’t want to know; that they just enjoy the power they have over people. When will they prove me wrong?

  • Traditional psychiatry – even of the Jungian variety – is so ignorant on subjects like Spirit, mysticism and memory that this is one of the main reasons I would not trust them with these medicines, any more than I trust them with the drugs they are already using.

    I know psychiatry as one of the biggest roadblocks to the study of spiritual phenomena in academia (thank goodness non-academics did not stop studying it!)

    Jung was an academic and valued his reputation as one. I have read that this is one reason why he refused to dig deeper into the spiritual, even though this is where is work was leading him.

    Though there are some academics that did go ahead and work in the field of “parapsychology,” the only ones known well to me work for the Division of Perceptual Studies at the University of Virginia School of Medicine. This work was started by psychiatrist Ian Stevenson when he agreed to chair this department, which was endowed with funding from Chester Carlson (1906–1968, the inventor of xerography).

    If it weren’t for various non-academics interested in this subject, Dr. Stevenson would have never received the funding he needed to pursue his interests in the paranormal. I imagine this may be true of many academic psychologists and psychiatrists.

    But because of the attitude of traditional psychiatry towards this work, all the important work done in this field was done my non-academics using their own resources. It is that work, not Dr. Stevenson’s, that first convinced me that we are immortal spiritual beings, and that this is the first and necessary step to a better understanding of the human condition, as well as its solution.

    I have seen MANY hours of people talking about their experiences with psychedelics. And though this has made it obvious to me that people really are getting something out of using them in a controlled manner, it is also blatantly obvious how little they know about the spirit and the mind and how these are related to the body.

    Besides the fact that there exist non-drug methods that achieve superior results, I do not consider these people well enough educated to be trusted with these drugs.

  • Here we get into the whole question of cultural traditions and the “popularity” of certain substances. One of the most quick-acting, dangerous, damaging and addictive substances we have is alcohol, yet any attempts to control its use have ended in disaster. There is the clearest example where we must fall back on educational programs and the problem of solving the addictive personality, as our legal system is totally unable to regulate the use of a drug that popular.

    Where substances can be derived from plants that are easily grown, we likewise have difficulty with regulation. Nicotine, caffeine and similar substances are not harmless, but too accessible and popular to be controlled beyond charging taxes on commercial sales.

    So again, education and pursuit of better “mental health” are key to preventing these and many similar drugs from wrecking too many lives.

    I did not decide to lead a no-drug life because I thought it would bring me closer to God, but there are many good arguments for doing so. However, in this world if I had a more addictive personality, I don’t know how I could have restrained myself from getting addicted to something, regardless of personal belief or faith.

  • cabrogal, I am impressed by how well-informed you are on these topics.

    Yes, the use of these substances will definitely be seen as bad by traditionalists, while the more mystically inclined might take a different view.

    We are bound to respect religious beliefs as matters of “faith” but recent research and events have shaken up this whole subject considerably. I feel lucky to have found a viewpoint which is tolerant and not too irrational, though precious few others would accept it as a valid viewpoint.

  • Well, that’s all I’m talking about. What most people call “profoundly spiritual” I see as “out of body.” I realize that most “trippers” don’t have a clear idea of exactly what they have experienced, particularly if they have no prior spiritual training. And we could be talking about what I know of as a “release” in many of these cases, but my point is that the spiritual being finds itself in an experience that it often cannot even find words to describe.

    If they really like that experience, well, there’s your route to addiction. If you get such an experience without using drugs, at least you can’t get addicted to a drug as a result!

  • From what I have gathered from online information and experiencers, psychedelics are particularly effective at promoting an “out of body experience” which I know of as “going exterior.” This can indeed be highly therapeutic, but as Christianity definitely sets limits on what “spiritual” looks like, such experiences are generally seen as beyond the pale.

    It is safer to go exterior without drugs, and the effects of doing so will likely be more profound, but most people in this society are so used to using drugs for everything, that this consideration likely won’t make any difference to them.

    The whole realm of spiritual experience is woefully under-researched and under-reported on this planet. On top of that, there are huge and ponderous belief systems and rituals built upon the “mystery” of spiritual existence. It is no great mystery! But it is indeed ironic that those society has entrusted to study it (psychology) and heal it (psychiatry) are the most insistent that it does not exist!

  • Thank you very much for this! I am confident that you have looked into this carefully. In some circles the CIA gets accused of having its fingers in everything! But if financial documents show the various funding pathways, this is a very solid indication of their involvement, even if it lacks completeness.

    The “New Age” movement in particular has always seemed a bit suspicious to me, not because of its claims, but because of its oversights and prejudices. It is an odd but strangely appealing quasi-religious movement that I have rubbed shoulders with on numerous occasions.

    I am acquainted with a guy who came out of the New Age, did a bunch of his own research, and now vehemently speaks against some of its more fantastical beliefs. I can only hope that more will follow him, or find other reasons to leave the New Age behind and pursue more workable systems.

  • The problem is that there are a whole phalanx (a military term, perhaps appropriate here) of experts, researchers and experiencers (most of whom I would describe as New Age) who are telling everyone they can think of that psychedelics are the greatest thing since sliced bread.

    A lot of these people are a little uncomfortable about handing these drugs over to psychiatrists, but not as uncomfortable as they should be — most of them just aren’t a part of the world of institutionalized psychiatry. Their therapists are in private practice.

    The seemingly unstoppable trend on this planet at this time is to “decriminalize” street drugs (which is seen as ceasing to punish addicts with jail time), and then to “legalize” them, which means in most cases, turning them over to the medical industry. There are some drugs that are considered harmless enough or popular enough that they cannot be controlled by doctors (caffeine, alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, …).

    This whole issue is difficult for me. I was raised to be a Liberal. But my church (and me) is against drug use. Our approach has been to educate users and potential users about the actual effects of drugs and then let them make an informed choice. But many of my friends would prefer that many drugs remain illegal. It is seen as a deterrent to use. But is it? Or does criminalizing drugs just help ruin more people’s lives and give corrupt state actors another excuse to throw someone they don’t like in jail?

    A lot of it has to do with whether you trust your government to play by the rules. We do NOT have a good experience in that regard when it comes to the mental health system and the drugs that have been approved for use in it.

    In today’s society, anything you make illegal can be used by a bad actor (psychopath) to get rid of an enemy. And anything you make legal can be used similarly. So isn’t the big problem the psychopaths, and not the laws?

  • I think equity by race is the least troubling issue as psychedelics go through the process of being commercialized.

    They “work” best in the hands of shamans and trained facilitators. Psychiatrists are about the furthest from that existing on this planet (except for a very few). NO treatment has been safe in the hands of psychiatrists! And the socioeconomic divide is baked into that problem.

    They will take any beauty and revelation to be gained from psychedelics or any other “medicine” and twist it or destroy it.

    There has always been a problem of getting ANY meaningful help to the “colonized” peoples of this planet. But at this point, we are a planet of colonized peoples!

    You have to be extremely well-informed and extremely smart with your money to escape the predations of psychiatry and their friends on this planet today. And it is true, psychedelics are much more readily available to the more “fortunate” among us. They can get good, clean product for almost anything they want on the Dark Web, and don’t have to rely on the street for things like that.

    One person recently interviewed about psychedelics asserted that everyone in the healing professions should be required to get psychedelic-assisted therapy. What they really meant is that these professions – in mental health in particular – are notorious for their lack of empathy, spirituality, and plain old ordinary love for their fellow human beings. This is the huge problem that the “woke” seem to overlook.

    This whole discussion does not even take into consideration various other problems related to legalizing dangerous drugs. These drugs inevitably bypass the medical system and find their ways into the medicine cabinets of adults and children they were never intended for. They will still be abused by addictive personalities, just as they are now. It is “nice” to decriminalize addiction, but that does not cure it.

  • This is an interesting story, but steeped in the verbiage of “modern” psychology.

    These people take the DSM totally seriously, and love to delve into the complexities of human physiology. They overlook that the “psyche” in psychology means soul, or spirit. And thus they leave out what turns out to be the most important part of human experience.

    We also have the problem of her implied position in life: Working out intensively five times a week? Seeing a therapist regularly, then doing intense physical therapy to recover…what did she do for a living before? Why did she have so much time for training and therapy? How could she afford it?

    That said, it is about time that the more able among us realized that an awareness of mind, body and the emotions and how they work together is important in life. Add Spirit back in, and we’ll be back to where we were ten thousand years ago when the Vedas were brought to Earth.

  • Though this verbiage may sound like music to some people’s ears, will it ever reach beyond the academic halls and actually result in a humanization of psychiatry?

    “Critical thought” has so far failed to humanize politics or business, but rather to cause riots and loss of jobs if one so much as says the wrong thing.

    In my experience, psychiatry and materialistic psychology are at the root of Critical Theory. Is its aim really at reform, or simply destructive?

    Yes, psychiatry does practice a kind of “racism.” It is the “de-humanization” of the human spirit, the psyche that it pretends to treat!

    Is psychiatry really prepared to back away from this “colonial” distaste for the spiritual, and then re-think all its paradigms based on the new data that this fundamental change would reveal? Those paradigms include: Brain equals mind; Genetics replaces past life experience; Evolution is the only explanation for human development. All these assumptions are deeply wrong, and if truly corrected, would change the orientation of psychiatry forever. But do they REALLY want to go there? Even the critical thinkers?

  • Here we have a perfect example of a piece of “scholarship” based on the new theories of Wokeness.

    As a framework for critique, Critical Theory and its corollaries might have its place. But as a basis for political action, it comes very close to the epitome of criminal thinking. And the paper’s authors, in pointing out how well they think psychology could support their goals, pull back the wizard’s black curtain to reveal the theoretical source of these broken ideas: Psychology.

    What “modern” psychology has given us is ZERO insight into the psyche, and thus ZERO insight into how to fix the criminality that plagues this planet. For all practical purposes, it instead suggests that we give up; “If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.”

    Psychology was one of the earliest fields in the humanities to become infected by criminal thinking. It asserted that people were just animals and that the problems of the mind could be solved by neurologists. What a cop-out! Meanwhile, they helped governments and big business to find more effective ways to brainwash people.

    The only system to suffer more damage from criminal activity might be the criminal justice system itself. It has been broken for a very long time, because it deals directly with broken people.

    Today, we have enough knowledge to turn this scene around for real. But the people who want to keep it broken still have a lot of influence, and currently that is preventing any real improvement. Don’t believe them that we are “doing the best we can with what we know.” That is BS. The system is purposely being held down.

  • My value in this article was to get a little peek into how the “healthcare system” of today operates.

    Back when I was getting therapy, it was a one-hour session every week. Insurance paid for it. Pills were totally out of the picture, as this was a psychologist, not a psychiatrist. And I got to know the person I was working with, and she got to know me.

    What cannot be addressed here, of course, is why the system is so broken. After learning what I have learned (so far) about life, I can say without hesitation that someone wanted to break this system. There are people out there who DO NOT want people to heal. And they have been able to exert sufficient political and financial pressure on the system to break it. I hear that emergency doctors still know how to patch up wounds. But iatrogenic accidents are the 3rd largest cause of death in the United States, by some estimates. And that makes zero sense, unless you factor in this avid (but hidden) desire to break the system on the part of someone who is having a fair amount of success at it.

    I just think there are better ways to die. Why go out of this world convinced that you have been betrayed by your doctors? What kind of attitude towards life will that foster? Just because life is hard doesn’t mean that we all have to suffer through it.

    This story, to me, is one of a partial escape from the system. Now we need to take it the rest of the way.

  • My best understanding of it is that it consists of a loose affiliation of people with criminal minds. Though it’s woo-woo to say this: Off-world influence has also been observed.

    Their only real power is their willingness to perform criminal acts (starting with their current favorite – character assassination) to get what they want. In the past it was thought that they mostly indulged in blackmail, and that may still be true. The stories are pretty grim. But we all know that people really do do this to each other.

  • Well, yes. The example was the first one I thought of. And of course we don’t think of mental health interventions as happening in prisons, normally. But they do, and the psychopaths there (not all prisoners are psychopaths by any means!) will either accept therapy in the hopes they can get an early release, or refuse therapy. But in any case, they won’t make a decision that makes sense, just like their decision to commit a crime didn’t make sense. And that’s my only point; that’s the dilemma.

    Forcing mental health treatment on someone never works for the person it is forced on. But it might “work” for society. So the real problem comes when the person gets arrested and is forced by society to live in prison. Would any mental health intervention actually work under those conditions? I have heard of various training programs working in prison, but it is not an appropriate setting for helping someone to be happy.

  • But in the field of “mental health” we know what the pat answer to this is, and why involuntary treatment is allowed by law in many places, if only for a limited period of time.

    Of course, as people in this community expected, those laws opened a Pandora’s Box of real and potential abuses.

    We have a real dilemma here, in extreme cases. Whereas, in many cases it would be much wiser to let the patient (“client”) decide, there are a few that would not be able to do this.

    In some cases, those extreme cases will involve violence that would justify physical restraint and arrest. However, in other cases, this may not be how it works out. A case that comes to mind was related by Stanton E. Samenow in one of his few lectures posted on Youtube. A crying baby is found on the ground outside an apartment building. (I forget if it was hurt) Locating the old lady who was “taking care” of the child, she asserted that the child wandered out to the balcony and fell off before she could stop it. But further investigation proved that in fact the woman “threw” the baby off the balcony in some sort of fit of anger. In asking such a person how they wished to be treated, she would maintain that there was absolutely nothing wrong with her. This is an extreme case, but they are not that uncommon. So this is a big dilemma in the field of mental health.

  • If you have access to the internet, keep looking around on it. I’m told it is inappropriate for me to suggest the specific groups that I favor on this blog, but search for people who just want to help other people and see if you can find a person or group who you might feel comfortable with. It probably won’t be part of the “mental health” system. That system seems to be quite broken at this point.

  • This looks to me like another great example of thumb-twiddlng. Not that the people who write articles in the journal Psychiatric Services care what I think!

    It’s not that I’m not curious about what people who are prescribed meds like this actually do with them. For that matter, I am also very interested in what people who are NOT prescribed these meds do with them! But the point is that here we are pushing up against the beginnings of a police state, and we are worried about how people take their meds?

    The pro-tyranny folks want to figure out how to monitor everybody 24/7, then make not taking your meds an actual crime so they can arrest practically anyone they want at any time.

    And what do the pro-social justice folks want? That’s not quite clear to me. Equal tyranny for all? It seems strange to me that they aren’t doubling down on the atrocious human rights violations we still see in the field of mental health (and now the field of public health?) and blowing the whistle on it! Who’s side are they on, anyway?

  • Yes, I believe it is very probable there is a hierarchy involved. That is what I was told was found. The secrecy of it makes it difficult to uncover.

    There have been satiric videos made of news anchors or politicians across the nation or the planet all using the same words to convey the same message. So these sorts of activities are being coordinated through some central authority.

  • We have always had difficulty finding physical evidence for things that people want to keep hidden from us!

    But I have looked at the accounts of Svali and many others, the early work of Pie and Mash Films in the UK, and references to studies done on the subject, and it seems pretty real to me.

    I am guessing you don’t believe in spiritual existence, reincarnation, ghosts or anything like that, either?

  • Oh – medical model! It’s in the title of the article! Sorry.

    I have different experiences with models. I used to build them for fun when I was a kid.

    Strictly speaking, a “model” is a mathematical approximation of a physical system used for predicting the behavior of the system.

    I don’t think psychiatrists are very good mathematicians, though. And of course, the guys in charge are not to be trusted no matter what “model” you give them to work with. They can (and have) screwed up a Spirit-Mind-Body model! And that’s one of the best ones we have.

    I think models have their place. But they are useless in the hands of most psychiatrists.

  • It is good to see some dissent in academia on various clinical habits, such as the use of CHR-P.

    Will it have any real effect on practice, though?

    How many in the general public still believe in “chemical imbalance?” The academic world has moved on, but drug company marketing campaigns had the desired effect.

    The whole idea of screenings to identify “at risk” individuals might work for actual metabolic diseases, but in the field of “mental health” they only serve the industry by increasing their list of potential victims.

    The key point remains: Other than making money, they don’t know what they’re doing.

  • Those who have been following these issues are well aware of the pressure put on journalists – and on the general public through the media – to support the message of organized psychiatry.

    The most interesting fact I found in this article was that the Carter Center had put together a “press kit” for writers in the field of “behavioral health.” Boy does the document reek (I found a copy online and went through it) of “we are the experts so you better listen to us.”

    That’s the direction this world is heading right now. We’ve given up on the “expertise” of the democratic process and replaced it with tyranny by “experts” (technocracy). But without any democratizing feedback loop, the people never get to push back with “These ideas don’t work!” And even if all our structural systems for checks and balances were perfect, you’d still need a baseline level of sanity in society for them to work. This is currently lacking.

  • Saying that Braun was inept (as are most psychiatrists) and saying that his ideas and findings were totally incorrect are two different things. There have been many many people who have looked into SRA or reported experiencing it. You can always expect some people will try to ride any bandwagon that comes along. But all of them? There are too many who have looked into this and found evidence for it. It is, however, not strongly supported as a real thing, and there are a lot of people trying to make some person or group look bad who throw around the term too carelessly.

  • I don’t think the most important “mental illnesses” (or whatever we want to call them) have adaptive value. I don’t believe in that line of thinking. Does a broken arm have adaptive value? Something happened and you broke your arm! Get it fixed up so it can heal! That’s how I look at the more important mental problems.

    Some behaviors that are basically normal are condemned by the truly sick as being “mental illnesses.” I think that’s where the real problem lies for most people who get diagnosed as “mentally ill.”

    But I reject the premises of “evolutionary psychology” and wish psychologists would start studying the psyche instead of finding new and creative ways to avoid studying it.

  • This story comes through loud and clear.

    Is this guy “mentally ill?” How would YOU react to those experiences? He survived to speak honestly about what happened. I’d say he is one of the saner ones.

    The sociopathic co-worker, the abusive hospital attendants and psychiatrists. Is this our “normal?” Those people, if anything, had bigger mental health problems. Why weren’t they the patients and Mr. Brown their keeper? Could it be this is a planet that has been turned on its head? Where good works and honesty are looked down on, and rape and murder applauded? It seems so, sometimes. Are those of us lucky or sane enough to have calm productive lives a minority on this planet? Sometimes I wonder. In any case, this story gives us some idea of how far we have to go.

    I like his admonition: “The best drug that helped me was understanding. That’s the best drug.”

  • I hate to support the work of people who so clearly do not understand the basics of their subject. But if we can find some way to cancel the use of antidepressants it would be worth it.

    To take a wild guess, I would think most severe depressive episodes are triggered by severe physical or emotional pain, or some combination of the two. And this pain would most likely be coming from a psychopath in the environment, or in some cases an environmental poison or contaminant.

    Remove the physical or psychological contamination, provide adequate nutrition and rest, and the depression should subside. Then further work can be done to handle the situation more permanently.

    To describe depression as an adaptive response consisting of “analytical rumination” is a bizarre and unnecessary complication. But if a study will demonstrate that drugs make it worse, go for it!

  • I am a bit aghast at the lack of curiosity, or intellectual reach, displayed by so many who have an academic background. It is certainly not in the tradition of classic intellectualism. Though there has always been, perhaps, a sort of exclusivity or “we’re smarter than you” slant in the academic world.

    Academically trained people who still want their information spoon fed to them will of course only get the information that the person holding the spoon wants them to have. We expect this among the general public, but college-educated people seem just as weak on this point, if not worse!

    If this is the legacy of the modern university, then that institution has failed us. I have held this view for at least 40 years. Though occasionally a shining light walks out of college, most graduates seem to be anything but shining to me. And lo and behold! We see yet again the telltale fingerprints of psychology and its dogmas.

  • This message needs to get out as often and as widely as possible. I’m glad to see others working on this.

    I am concerned, however, that so many people will think: “but these drugs are my only option. I use them or I suffer even worse.” People are so used to taking drugs for everything.

    So we must also do what we can to forward the message that drugs are not the way to solve most problems, particularly psychological ones, as preachy as that may sound to people. Then, we need to come up with the other ways.

  • This little summary doesn’t get into what Cameron actually did to people. It was pretty awful! We can think of this as just the excesses of one warped mind. But remember: He was operating in the field of mental “health!” And his colleagues did nothing (that I know of) to stop him. Similar to the original Mengele. It requires a new level of vigilance to guard against such people and their atrocities.

  • rebel, I appreciate the extent of your faith. But I am concerned that the situation we find ourselves in on Earth could last long enough (if not forever) to crush so many of us down that no surviving desire for freedom would be strong enough to be effective.

    In my world and in my group there is an urgency to the situation. We look back at the history of civilizations and we see a long spiritual (not always material) decline. And when we trace this trend forward, it seems to end in what might be called “permanent spiritual death.” We don’t want that for ourselves, our friends or loved ones, so we work with what we have learned so far to confer a sort of immunity to this fate on as many people as are willing to try. It is not a perfect answer but we hope it will result in an ultimate escape and return to freedom.

  • I have words that “know the mind and the body” as well as what is looking at and talking about the mind.

    The only reason “we” don’t have these words and concepts is because we have been told they don’t exist. But they do; we have simply been lied to.

    Some may not agree that those words and concepts are useful or helpful, but until we know that they exist, we can’t have that conversation.

  • I am somewhat familiar with Mel K, but not her guest.

    I am also familiar with Simon Parkes, and many various others. Like Simon and a few others, I believe ETs are involved in the background. I think it is unwise to push against the Catholic Church just because people need some sort of church in their lives, and many are still Catholic.

    These highly-detailed analyses based on various quotes and excerpts and historic details don’t seem quite right to me, but these people are good-hearted and can see what is obvious. There ARE connections between many different groups and businesses. And while it is difficult for me to listen to some of the religious terminology used here, I have no doubt there is a lot of truth in what they are saying.

  • It is always encouraging to see academics discover something that seems true to me, while at the same time discouraging to see them cling to assumptions that are (to me) obviously false.

    It is true that this is just a correlative study. To test more strongly for causation, you would have to request (force?) the group to change their reading habits for a period of time, and measure them before and after. Do I have better “attributional complexity” because I have read more literary fiction, or did that trait attract me more strongly to literary fiction? In the “modern” world of psychology, we do need to recognize the fact that personality traits can be prior to this-life habits.

    Though the authors insist on referring to “evolutionary psychology,” a subject I find singularly useless, I can understand the attractiveness of it, for it furnishes a plethora of superficial explanations. Their ambition to “help society flourish” is intriguing in its uniqueness. Who in these difficult times ever expresses this sentiment? I wish them luck in achieving it!

  • It is always amazing for me to hear from people – often fluent writers – about what life is like in that world. I have never lived there this life.

    My argument against “mental health” drugs has always been stark and didactic: The mind is not part of the body, so how can you make the mind “healthy” by medicating the body? It is a scientific impossibility (assuming you agree with my science). The drugs are doing things to your body. They can make it feel better, or make it feel worse. And so you react mentally to how your body is changing. And that is all that is happening.

    But when someone who has actually been through this tells their story, the situation becomes more nuanced. Certain drugs can make the mind “feel better.” We are very familiar with many of them, as the most popular are legal for casual use. With psych meds, it is not always blatantly obvious that someone is addicted to them, although most who have attempted withdrawal know this is usually the case. And so, they become not only a route to a possible calmness, but also a trap.

    On top of this, there are many things that can happen in life that can separate a person from real mental health treatments, as well as from the feeling of being mentally healthy. I experienced both last year. Things could get so bad that no alternative treatments or teachings will be allowed (or affordable). And that would be full-blown slavery. We are closer to this than most of us think.

    In some ways I feel similar to this writer. I am in a mental, emotional and intellectual quandary. Though I know there is a way out of this quandary, I don’t know if I can succeed to do it. Thus I feel like I’m in a better place than many facing these challenges. But not by much! I am hoping that somehow our efforts will inspire more people to refuse the drugs. That would be a great first step! But it would only be a first step.

  • The people who live by this aphorism force themselves out of their own comfort zones in order to learn a new song, gain a new skill or hone some ability. They might have help from a coach, but they don’t want to be forced to do it any more than anyone else.

    Normally such people have a place where they can be very comfortable, then another place where they work to challenge themselves. They are actually maintaining a balance, but they talk up the side that seems harder to do.

    For a person who is never comfortable, this makes no sense.

    But I know a lot of people who live by this aphorism, so there is a workability to it, when properly balanced.

  • I would welcome more articles on this subject!

    I am perturbed, though, by the authors’ withdrawal into the safe space of present time environment when they should be pushing harder on the work begun by the psychoanalysis people.

    There is something right about both of these “paradigms.” Some people who experience what some call “mental illness” do feel, subjectively, that there is something wrong with them. When you go to the extreme of the psychopath, this becomes more obvious (though the psychopath is likely to consider himself the sanest person in the world). Also, the environment does expose us to many stresses that can overwhelm us to various degrees that have as much to do with physiological limitations as they have to do with “mental health.”

    The possibility that both Freud and Jung were onto something should not be overlooked. Did they fail because they were wrong, or because they didn’t look far enough or hard enough into the human mind? We know now how far the human mind can extend. Someone should be talking about it, and someone in academia (besides Jim Tucker’s group) should be investigating it. There IS more to learn about this, you know!

  • I think some Buddhist practices are closer to qualifying as “treatments” than something like “meditation” “mindfulness” or “yoga.” Especially when they are done under the supervision of a “master.”

    But of course, my objection to articles like these is that they stop at the level of environment (which could be called the source of “triggers”) and fail to go beyond that to discover what is being triggered by all those triggers, and what to do about that.

  • In my circles, these forms of censorship are well-known and considered very common. But in this case, the drug companies are the obvious bad actors, while in other cases this connection is not so easy to make.

    A few have been wise enough to step back and ask: More generally, what does drug treatment do to a person? And the usual answer is: It makes that person totally dependent on those drugs, and thus a kind of slave to them. Then when you look out across the full range of modern censorship, you see all of it as an attempt to replace free thought and action with a dependence on experts and instructions from authorities.

    I believe this points to a broader answer concerning why this censorship exists and why it has recently become so brazen and irrational: There is some group (or collection of individuals) on this planet that is terrified of free thought and freedom of action. And they are trying to run the show. This seems to be the actual situation.

  • Every aphorism has its place.

    “A penny saved is a penny earned.” They have been around a long time, and we occasionally come up with new ones.

    These sayings can always be misused and probably always will be. But there is usually some truth in them or they wouldn’t stick.

    To tell someone who is constantly suffering, “you need to get out of your comfort zone” would be ridiculous. You tell that to people who are more or less obviously so attracted to complacency that they are becoming useless to society, or at least to themselves.

    We could carefully define “success” (attainment of a desired outcome) or “comfort zone” (a level of functioning that is easy and familiar) but would that assist in resolving the problem of the misapplication of this and many other bits of popular advice?

    Most people who experience a “normal” amount of striving in life – someone who is competitive or seeking to constantly improve a skill or a product – knows and lives with this aphorism every day. If they are a good person, they wouldn’t rub it in to someone who is less ambitious, but might do that to a constant complainer. But that would leave out all the other “truths” that such people live by, such as the fact that we determine our own emotions and many of our own outcomes.

    I think the intention of the advisor is more important than the exact advice. And if someone feels harassed by a certain bit of advice, it might be wise to take a look at WHO keeps pushing this at you even though it is obviously not working for you.

    Of course, the truly emotionally unwell are also capable of complaining about advice. So the tables can be turned. In the end, there is no substitute for a good set of life skills and the self-confidence that goes with using them effectively.

  • I have taken so few drugs in my life that it is hard for me to imagine how people survive the kind of treatments that you describe. I can only imagine that you are a strong being.

    If one defines “mental illness” rather loosely, then yes they do definitely exist. The major one, overlooked in the DSM, is Psychiatrist Disorder. Its major symptoms include: Making up disorders to label other people with in order to hide your own, and pretending to be a doctor while actually harming patients.

    We could all do with improved mental health. But if we got that, we would probably figure out how to overturn the corrupt ones trying to control the current system. So, they pretend, but in fact, it’s the last thing they are interested in.

  • I thought this was going to be an article about how to use science to test a hypothesis (or tell if a drug works). It spent very little time discussing that subject, instead focusing of the vagaries of testing drugs. One reason these problems exist, of course, is because the subjects you are testing are humans, and science – a product of human activity – does not even understand humans that well. Thus the physical sciences and engineering tend to be much more successful using the scientific method than do Medicine and the social sciences (like psychology, economics).

    What you should be able to test for in terms of drug reactions is what changes the drug makes to the body. This would keep the tests in the realm of the objective. To test for the suppression or relief of subjective symptoms is a whole new ballgame.

    I think that for any major leaps forward to be made in the physical or the social sciences, a better understanding of how life works will have to be achieved.

    Sorry to be pedantic, but the fact is that the actual healing agent in biology is Spirit. If Spirit decides to heal, then healing will occur, and the experimental subject will normally report an improvement. And if Spirit decides to stay sick, then the subject won’t get better. This is the power of the placebo, and it could be argued that all those RCTs that use placebos have actually proven the healing power of Spirit!

    But more importantly, if life were better understood, doctors and Big Pharma would be forced to admit that their drugs should take a back seat to therapies that address Spirit more directly. A great way to sober up a drunk is to give him a Locational. And if the real cure for psychosis was to “make it difficult for the patient to focus on the psychotic ideation” then a Locational should also work to treat psychotics! Yet, anyone could be trained to help someone in this way, so where’s the profit in it?

    Some would argue that all this really tells us is that help and greed are incompatible. Perhaps science (if it is meant to help) is also incompatible with greed (profit motive). I suppose this was the original idea behind having so much government-sponsored research. But now that the corporate world has nearly captured government and academia, how do we move forward?

    Some of the most important hypotheses of the last century remained untested by science due to the suppressive influence of vested interests. There is no field where this is more evident than Mental Health, with Medicine running close behind. How can we shake these vultures loose and move forward?

  • The article is interesting. I didn’t read the original paper.

    In the context of a website like this, you’re going to have some who will simply assert, “this whole idea is a bunch of BS.” While others will be more willing to explore the nuances a bit, though not with an attitude much more favorable than sarcasm.

    That clinicians still take this whole subject seriously speaks first to the intellectual limitations of their educations and second to their need to have a set of medical-sounding categories for billing purposes.

    The fact remains (as far as I am aware) that the most common way this whole problem starts is when a person approaches a practitioner and says, “doctor I need your help,” or words to that effect.

    A very common variation on this theme is when a friend, family member or government employee approaches the practitioner, rather than the actual patient, and says, “doctor, I need your help with (fill in the blank).”

    The practitioner then starts the process by hearing a story, either from the patient or someone who knows the patient. This story may or may not be factual, but if the patient is telling the story, the practitioner can at least check certain points of the story against direct observation. At that point the practitioner can ask, “what should I do about this?” This is supposedly where the technical data really kicks in and a nosology (list of illnesses) should come in handy. But, the fact is, life often doesn’t work that way.

    I could continue to draw out this whole process, but beyond my own very limited clinical experience, I am really not qualified to do that.

    I do want to note what discussions like this tend to miss:

    1) Intentions. Does the patient really need help, or are they just in need of some attention? Is the “friend” really interested in getting help for the patient, or really only wants to get rid of them?

    2) Psychopathology. Is this person having trouble because of a crazy person in their environment? (This goes for physical injuries, not just emotional problems.) The patient may be unaware that they are connected to someone who is crazy, or may be afraid of “telling” on them. This is a very important missing step, the neglect of which often causes much harm.

    3) Complexities. A practitioner who hopes to narrow every patient down to one “illness” and one treatment is on a losing path before they even start. Chances are very high that the situation is more complex than that. There could be a whole causal chain that could lead back to basics like lack of sleep, poor nutrition, illiteracy, an untreated physical problem, fighting parents, sexual abuse, or some combination of many different situations. The person, in coming into a clinical setting, may temporarily escape the turbulence in their life, but when released go back and “get sick” again.

    In the light of the above points, particularly when addressing behavioral and emotional situations in a person’s life, the concept of a DSM becomes almost laughable. It gives someone like me the distinct impression that the whole group of professions who use the DSM either don’t know what they are doing, really don’t care, or aren’t very bright. I challenge the “mental health system” to prove me wrong!

  • It’s so agonizing to see the snail-pace progress even in people who seem to really want to help others.

    This is because they are being held back (sometimes quite forcibly) by people in those professions and in society who really want to harm others.

    When those restraints are removed, healers begin to look at more workable models, like body-mind-spirit.

    Though I can commend people like Dr. Rush for their work and good intentions, the key to their problems lies in the work of their own colleagues. So they really need to free up their thinking and then just look around more broadly in their own family of disciplines to begin to discover what’s really going on.

  • Though this paper apparently conveys a robust criticism of one of our more protected professions, it seems more like a game of kids throwing rocks at each other than a serious scholarly work.

    In 1980 my psychologist warned me about psychiatry. From that and other data I can assume that the two fields have been in a state of civil war for some time now. To trace back the dehumanization of psychiatry to the Reagan era is totally preposterous. How about the two world wars? Psychiatry was deeply involved in both of them!

    By believing the lie that “Presently, the major causes of mental illness are unknown” the paper leads the reader into believing that we will have to invest yet millions more of tax dollars into research that will help no one except maybe some vested interest’s bottom line.

    For me, this has been the great tragedy of my lifetime. That great strides WERE made in these fields, but were ignored because they threatened vested interests. That was the most obvious evidence that the “mental health system” was constructed for political purposes, and not to help anyone or solve any problems. Since the system became better-funded in the 1960s, societal problems have only been getting worse. Looks a lot more like a protection racket to me!

    Even most readers of this website don’t have any clue that the problem of mental health has largely been solved. Well, I’m not going to be the one to force the solutions down anyone’s throat, but to continue to act like they don’t even exist seems at best a bit negligent. At some point we should get to the point of realizing that some good work has been done on this and is worth discussing. How much longer do you all want to play this game of blind man’s bluff?

  • I found this prose nearly impossible to read.

    The concepts involved here are quite confusing and I think misguided.

    Groups that have been targeted for extermination (to put it bluntly) do face more extreme issues than many of us do. But the fact is, we have all been targeted for extermination.

    So the same basic remedies apply across the planet, to all people, though with certain groups more emphasis might have to be placed on certain aspects of the remediation process.

    The first step for any individual or group is to identify and disconnect from any psychopath who has a significant influence in your life. Although it has been argued that “systems” can become psychopathic (thus, “systemic racism”) there has never been sufficient attention placed on the psychopaths that may be operating or perpetuating such systems. They are the correct targets, not “systems.”

    This can be a difficult step, as psychopaths are masters at hiding themselves. But it is a very crucial step. If any significant psychopathic influence is left in place, it will work very actively to continue the suppression. And if the target individual or group begins to improve and assert itself, this could be met by an increased level of violence from the psychopath.

    Once that toxic connection is handled, these “frameworks” (I have more software training than psych training; to me the term refers to computer software!) can possibly be applied successfully, along with attention to various individual issues that may remain.

    The psychopath has been the “elephant in the room” for decades now! Let’s put some attention on handling that aspect of the problem!

  • The title suggested to me that the point of the study would be that everyone should have equal rights to have their human rights abused by a psychiatrist.

    Maybe African psychiatrists don’t go around abusing their patients like American ones do, but still, is this the real answer to the problems some people have at keeping their jobs? Why don’t more psychiatrists have more problems keeping their jobs? I would guess most of them have severe mental illness.

    Truth is, no employer wants to deal with an employee that is always having problems. It would be great if there were more effective treatments for such people, because then they could more easily hold a job. Barring that, the only effective handling I have seen has been to create some sort of community-based program where people can go and contribute at their ability level and get some sort of recompense so they are seen as useful community members. The general public can also be trained to deal with these problems in a more understanding way.

    The tragedy, of course, is that there ARE more effective treatments for people with problems. They just aren’t normally provided by psychiatrists.

  • It is true. The brain and every internal part of the body deserves to be protected and nurtured, not exposed to harsh chemicals or otherwise abused. If the brain – any body part – has a problem, we can possibly prop it up temporarily with nutrients or sleep or even drugs, but it is ultimately Spirit that will put things right, and we should never forget that.

  • I have seen very spiritual people refer to “brain” when they mean mind. For proper understanding, I think it is important to remember that “the brain is the physiological organ which allows the mind to connect to the body.” We can be sloppy with words if we understand this clearly. It’s important to my understanding of people and of life. Of course, each must develop their own understanding of these things.

  • It is common to think of the fear response as “necessary for survival.” But even in animals, I have seen the fear response paralyze them when they should run. My view is that fear is debilitating. In humans, this is even more obvious. You see a spider, a snake, an angry dog, whatever… you can get a fear reaction or you can know exactly what you need to do to stay healthy and happy in that particular situation and just do it. No fear involved.

    I think someone is selling us fear as necessary when it really isn’t. “Evolution” can explain it, but very poorly, particularly when you take Spirit into account.

    That said, trauma therapy is about trauma. It might often have to do with fear, but not necessarily. It could be from a head injury from sports or something. You’d expect fear to be a part of most incidents that result in emotional trauma. But there could be much more than just that involved as well.

  • I totally missed this when it came out.. going through some stuff of my own at the time. It is a very long article. I didn’t read all of it.

    In the context of more recent discussions (July 2021), it might seem odd, or even misguided, that appearing on a TV show such as this could result in a significant therapeutic change. But it is more or less obvious from this article that this is in fact possible.

    Should this be the new normal for our mental health care system? I must say, it sounds like these shows had a better batting average for positive results than does the conventional system! But from this experience, is it possible to determine which factors were the most important to providing a positive outcome? I don’t think it is. There was a good deal of focus, though, on the role played by the trained psychotherapist. And I think that focus is appropriate.

    This article was thorough enough to provide what amounted to some actual case studies. And what came up over and over what that there was a mental/emotional component to what was going on with these people, and when it was uncovered, they improved. In other words, the makeover itself might not have been enough. I believe these anecdotal examples support my contention that there is more than just an “oppressive system” contributing to common mental health issues; there are also real mental mechanisms at work. And getting “stuck in a past loss” is one of the more common.

    While far from conclusive proof that it will take more than UBI or a utopian level of equity and inclusiveness to make everyone well and happy, I think this article demonstrates that we need to include the role of mental mechanisms, not just social constructs, in attaining mental wellness.

  • I have never encountered these terms and concepts before. It is all part of the “disabilities rights” movement, I guess. In my area (California) this movement has resulted in things like ramps next to stairways, curb cuts at crosswalks, sounds emitting from traffic signals, seating areas on public transit that must be yielded to disabled people, etc.

    This all seems like a good thing. But I am concerned about where this could lead us in the hands of people who don’t really understand the mind and its problems, or just want to “include” as many people as possible on their list of potential victims.

    Who would be the most “psychosocially disabled” person you could think of? For me, it would be the person who compulsively lies, cheats, steals, and wishes harm on others, the psychopath. He might already be incarcerated in jail, or he might be roaming free, being a psychiatrist or doing some other similar job. Don’t we have to draw a line somewhere on the subject of inclusion? We don’t need psychopaths running the show on this planet, and many would maintain that they already are.

    This study concerns the entire planet. And this planet (if I can believe the stories and images I am presented by a group like Human Rights Watch) is in very poor shape! In “backwards” countries, some people who are seen as “unmanageable” by their families or communities are held prisoner in their houses or in “healing centers” or in places like jails. They are being restrained without due process. We see this happening in a more hidden way in “developed” countries where psych hospitals (or even emergency wards in medical hospitals) are also used to restrain “unmanageable” people without due process. This is clearly wrong-headed, as when most of these people are released from their restraints, they feel better and do reasonably well. However, the narrative never seems to take the turn that I might expect it to take: So, what was wrong with the “normal” people who thought their only choice was to imprison the “abnormal” people? Is someone going around telling people that if they can convince themselves that a family member is psychosocially disabled, they then can have that person as a slave?

    I am concentrating on the ambiguities in this subject because I am concerned where it has taken us (so far) here in the United States. The cry for “inclusion” has led to police standing by while rioters loot local businesses, and certain people in positions of power trying to tell me I have no right to speak or be heard because I am too “white.” We cannot be so inclusive and so tolerant that it results in the insane running the show!

  • rebel, I don’t know enough about eyes and drugs to add or subtract anything from your comment.

    But I know that if you want someone to become more awake and more alive, you should try to keep them as awake and aware as possible, then as they run into the mental barriers that tend to shut them down, they will be that much more able to “punch through” those barriers.

    From what I know, I can’t tell others to not try this. But I do really urge practitioners to figure out what they are really doing with people by inducing REM. I know it has to go way beyond mere brain function.

  • I am always happy to hear about a non-drug mental therapy that works.

    However, the theory behind this therapy is brain-based which my training tells me is misguided.

    Additionally, the mention of REM and getting the eyes to follow a moving object makes it more or less clear that a hypnotic state may be induced by this therapy, and my training tells me that this can be dangerous for the patient.

    If the theory of this therapy were re-worked along more modern Spirit-based principles, I think it would become better understood, and fall into its proper place alongside other non-drug therapies. We already know that “talk” (or cognitive) therapy has some effectiveness, and it is only by the longest stretch that we can relate those gains to brain function. It should be obvious to those who don’t have their heads buried that something else is at work here, and that something else is Spirit, the actual causal source in this universe.

  • A man with my last name has made a serious error!

    My understanding is that the mental health system tends to cause homelessness by rendering people less able to take care of themselves as they grow up (or after they start on drugs). Thus, one major target in the struggle to reduce homelessness should be the mental health system!

    If you want to make homelessness illegal, that would force the homeless into the prison system. But it violates basic human rights to force people into the mental health system. We all know this. In addition, many people in the prison system need help with their mental health as well, but the current system cannot provide this help, as it is not really designed to help anyone, but only punish them. Both systems function for similar purposes, but it is, perhaps, easier to get someone committed then it is to get them arrested, tried and convicted.

  • This article by this young student from India is a good synopsis of what continues to be wrong with this “profession.” None of this should be news to us.

    The younger generation still wants to get this right. This young woman plans to study criminal (forensic) psychology. And I know another woman here in California about the same age who also wants to study this subject. I hope they know what they are getting into! This is the legacy of Robert Hare, Stanton Samenow, and some more recent others. It is a rough and unsettling subject. The focus is on psychopathy, as it rightly should be, I suppose. And while I think these people are on the right track, their intellectual boundaries make attaining their goal more difficult, if not hopeless.

    I recently saw sociopathy defined as learned psychopathy. By implication, the sociopath could be “re-educated” and returned to a non-criminal life. This has been accomplished in many prisons, according to reports I am aware of. The psychopath remains the tough nut to crack for this society. He is always taking over the systems we design to restrain him! And this is what we have seen with psychiatry.

  • This article is overall meaningful, but includes a stinging accusation that I see all the time on the internet.

    While young psychiatrists are urged to question or dismiss the false beliefs that are rampant in their profession, the author perpetrates just such a belief about my church!

    And so, in his attempt to bring together or strengthen a coalition that will stand up to the lunacy known as “modern psychiatric practice,” he slaps in the face one of the most important members of that coalition.

    What an irony!

  • At this level (stopping psychiatric malpractice), we are dealing with the subject of Ethics. And according to our Ethics, the suppressives must be removed from the environment before healing can occur (the healing technology, such as Dianetics, can then be applied). The suppressives will not allow healing (repair) to occur! I have become healthier just from knowing this, and dealing with suppressives in my own environment appropriately. I have heard of businesses recovering, and I have seen the stories of people who have recovered from toxic relationships.

    Of course if the systems have become very broken, then much repair will be needed. And there is the promise of a much more rational and creative future, which is what our technologies are all about. But the first step is to get in ethics! And that means getting the suppressives off the lines, and keeping them away. The technology of ethics was not totally put together until the 1970s, while Dianetics came out in the 1950s. An important reason that my group had difficulties in the early years was because its procedures for dealing with suppressives had not been fully developed.

    You may if you wish, edit down or edit out my references to some of these technical details. I was trying to keep my comments on a more broadly understandable level by using only more mainstream terms (like psychopath) and people (like Sandra Brown). But I think it is significant that she gives this problem a similar level of importance to that given to it by the church. She finds psychopathy a very fundamental barrier to healing, and everything I have studied agrees with this conclusion.

    And yes, I do have a “rose-colored” view of society! People are basically good. They are capable of great works and great achievements when psychopaths are not allowed to obstruct them. And while this is little more than a hopeful dream today, I do not put an emphasis on “the system” because I think that without psychopathy, the system would become a rather minor problem.

  • Steve, I think it’s been shown that eliminating sociopathy from a scene improves the scene. You may be aware of something I’m not aware of, but my understanding is that when a person really disconnects from a sociopathic spouse of friend, they actually do heal. If sociopaths were prevented from entering the field of psychiatry, the good-hearted people would take it over, and it would start working for the benefit of all. And I believe the same is true of businesses and governments. It doesn’t happen like a light switch, but it does happen.

    We have to remember that the sociopath does not just work to do evil, but also to hold back those trying to do good. If the ones trying to do good were not held back any more, they would triumph.

    There are documented instances of this, even in history.

    If this is your concern about those that dwell on the problem of sociopathy – the inevitable inertia of the broken systems they leave behind – I invite you to reconsider. A broken system can be repaired, when no one is preventing the repair man from doing his job! That is how I understand life to work. I will not detail examples here, but I believe they can be found.

  • And so we have yet another video warning of the dangers of these drugs.

    So far, though, what we seem to be seeing in the bulk of the population is: “But what else can we do? Don’t we have to take a chance with the drug, as there is no other way for the ill person to get better?”

    This is the next barrier to break through: The belief that drugs are the only road to recovery.

  • I know a very good woman whose marriage was ruined, as far as I can tell, because her husband was taking Adderall long after it had served its intended purpose. He would have fits of rage that really frightened her. The social consequences of using these drugs are extensive. A woman with her two little boys feels forced to leave an otherwise working marriage, loses her job, and must live like an outcast in her parent’s home. How many similar tragedies have resulted from the overuse of these drugs?

  • Thank you! I wish this subject were more routinely discussed here.

    Yes, Spirit is quick, efficient and cheap. Thus, it is a friend to the people, and an enemy to their oppressors.

    But I think we could maintain an economy in quite good shape while also using Spirit much more often and in ways appropriate to life in biological bodies on a planet.

    After all, the oppression of the Spirit deniers has resulted in a population that is much sicker, slower, and dumber than what they could be if they were very healthy. With a healthy population, we could have much more production and much less waste.

    I am not very well-read outside of the subjects I have chosen to focus on. That diet sounds great, but I try to keep my sights not on eating or exercise or all those care-of-body practices but on care-of-Spirit.

  • If we propose that it is “society” that is sick, we have no way out.

    If we can entertain the possibility that just some people in society are sick, and that they are the ones making it hard on the rest of us, then there could be a way out.

    I think everyone here should become more familiar with the subject of psychopathy (the anti-social personality). I think this subject is key to understanding the situation we are in.

  • This whole business is a huge issue in society right now, on many levels.
    My problem with the above is this concept of “system.” What “system?” This is a generalization that leaves us with no target, no way to correct the wrongs or fight back.

    I have been mentioning psychopaths a lot in my recent posts. Yesterday I went back and reviewed the conventional data on this subject. I found new interviews posted, (Sandra L. Brown) and a recently-made documentary on narcissistic abuse in relationships. Sandra asserts that psychopathy “is the biggest public health problem in this country.” So there are some people who are pursuing this subject and are seeing it for what it is!

    What we have when we think in terms of psychopathy rather than “systems” is actual individual targets for correction. And furthermore, all the data I have suggest that psychopaths are what make the “system” seem so oppressive, when it does seem that way. Psychopaths are experts in hiding themselves, of removing themselves from the conversation. Don’t let that happen here! That a certain percentage of people in society are broken makes a lot more sense to me than saying the whole society is broken. And it leads to a possible way out.

  • First I can say this: If a certain number of us can move away from the insanity, particularly on specific issues like Adderall, those who trust us to make smart decisions will go along. This is not ideal, but has been the case on Earth for a long time.

    Second: I have decided to push hard for a better understanding of Spirit on this planet. As long as “mental illness” is seen as a bodily disease, and people agree that drugs are a good way to handle or manage bodily diseases, we will have a terrible time convincing anyone to roll back drug use, even with the horrendous “side effects” that many of us have witnessed or heard about.

    If we can somehow begin to recognize the importance of Spirit in human life, human affairs, and healing, that opens the door to a whole new world of possibilities and understandings. The quantity of data that lies on the other side of that door never ceases to amaze me! And a lot of it IS being talked about on the internet, even if it remains ridiculed in the mainstream.

    The mainstream is wearing out its welcome for other reasons right now. But unless the political structure that supports it totally breaks down, it will never stop trying. And so, we must never stop trying.

    At this point in my life I only have about 20 years left in this body, if I’m smart and lucky. But I fully intend to come back and carry on with what we have started. I have seen others do this, so I am confident I can.

    Though it seems in some ways weak compared to real action, our ability to think and speak freely is the most important weapon we have to fight the insanity on this planet, and particularly in the “mental health” system. Though training in and using proven workable spiritual practices is very important, that others find out that such practices exist and are being used successfully is also very important.

    An example of that is your bringing up Patch Adams. I knew absolutely nothing abut this man, so I am very happy that you do, and referred to him in your article. He is an inspiration for MDs (not just psychiatrists) and though the fact that his approach is very spiritual isn’t that obvious, anyone who bothers to listen to him can clearly see that his is indeed bringing the healing power of Spirit into the realm of medicine, and has done so with great success.

  • This is good news. But…the U.N. has become very adept at marketing. Can they actually DO anything to give some teeth to these more humanistic principles?

    The U.N. is peopled mostly by college graduates and other intellectuals, and while such persons are quite capable of writing high-minded reports, they are also quite capable of letting gross atrocities slip under their noses, then adding the needed spin to deflect their responsibility for what happened. (I am thinking in particular of the story of how cholera was introduced to Haiti.)

    So, this report lands on me similar to how the Universal Declaration of Human Rights might have landed on the planet in its day. It is beautifully worded and was signed by almost every nation. But until my church began to broadly publicize its existence, very few people even knew about it. And by the way, how is human rights doing around the world today?

    So, well done on the lip service. Now, could we please see some action?

  • I know, Steve. These ideas which I give voice to are preposterous on their face. But I have seen people maintain these ideas as facts with the utmost seriousness!

    I am not trying to say that these movements, once started, were not supported by people of high integrity and good intentions. I am not saying that anyone who ever thought, “let’s start a movement to improve our situation” was a fool or a criminal.

    But I am saying that many “social movements” have involved a lot of conflict (often to the point of warfare or murder) and making whole groups wrong for their beliefs or attitudes, and such activities, to me, show signs of criminal insanity.

    Following is a typical example of what one can be exposed to if one noses around overmuch into these issues:

    “While trying to recruit Aaron Russo for the CFR (Council on Foreign Relations), Nicholas Rockefeller told him that his family foundation created women’s liberation using mass media control as part of a long-term plan to enslave humanity.”

    Do we know that this is true? No, we don’t.
    Does there seem to be some effort on this planet to “enslave” us? There does to me! So, where does it come from? Who’s behind it?

    The Rockefellers are one known family of swindlers. Who knows what motivated them down through the generations? But I know that 1) psychopaths exist in positions of power and 2) if they didn’t, things would be better. So I am willing to stretch a point in the hopes that it will motivate others to stretch their thinking beyond normal limits. Things on Earth really are stranger than they appear! Of that I am quite certain!

  • It is true what you say about these toxic personalities existing everywhere. But in psychiatry, it seems, they find the chance to really “shine.” In many other professions, they merely taint the reputations of others who are trying to do honest work. In the field of psychiatry they have created a “profession” that is universally reviled. At least, this is how I see the situation.

  • I very much appreciate the calmness and simple optimism of this article.

    I wish the data I have been exposed to made me feel as calm as I would like to feel about this subject.

    Activists have made a good start by recognizing the fact that there is wrong-doing in the mental health system, by measure of our own laws, and informing others of this. Groups like mine have focused on tightening the legal noose around psychiatry, in the hopes that we can reduce the damage being done. But the amount of damage being done is now so appalling! And so I am not that calm.

    All change must start with the recognition for the need of change. This article and this site does well on that score.

  • It seems like official organs such as the U.N. are catching up on this issue just in time to be ineffectually contentious about it. MK-ULTRA and similar programs date from the 1950s. Alarms were sounded back then, but not heeded.

    Of course by some great feat of intellect and courage, this whole business could still be dismantled. But as things stand, it is practically built in to daily life.

  • kindredspirit, you have every right to believe as you wish about these issues. But you express the conventional wisdom about how and why these movements came about, and so far, acting on those theories have not effected a lasting change.

    I think it is time to inspect some other theories about this that take deeper causes into account. That’s why I advocate for people to look into the subject of Spirit. It leads to deeper causes.

  • This all fits into why people interested in psychology should also be interested in Spirit. From the data I am aware of, some people, as spiritual beings, became prone to antisocial behavior a long time ago. The cure also involves undoing that ancient problem they are stuck in that makes them fight anyone and everyone around them as if they were enemies. A person who has no reality on Spirit would think these ideas are silly.

    The key, then, is to prevent such personalities from attaining positions is society where they can have undue power over others. This seems “unfair” or “discriminatory.” Well, we do it to people we call “criminals” all the time! It’s just that there are a strata of anti-socials who are smart enough to elude the justice system: psychiatrists and their ilk. It would be unfair to good people who happen to venture into the world of psychiatry to prevent them from continuing with their work. So “are you a psychiatrist?” is not an adequate test. The best test, in our society, involves 1) ascertaining that they have committed crimes and 2) ascertaining that they are of this personality type. There are several tests for it, Robert Hare’s being perhaps the best-known.

    There have been many psychiatrists who have been removed from practice based on their crimes alone, but seeing as how they work to protect each other, and currently control the personality assessment business, the above ideas are currently impractical, and our job becomes trying to convince society that their work is criminal while they busily try to convince society that their work is OK. Though I like to think we are making progress, outwardly we appear to be losing this battle.

  • You should know that I don’t totally agree with this.

    It is a reasonable point of view about life. But my data suggest that anti-social personalities, when protected or supported instead of exposed and hindered, do harm in society way out of proportion to their numbers.

    “Most of the ills of society come from humans making destructive decisions due to their lack of perspective or courage or their fears or desires to dominate others.”

    OK. But what gives them that lack of perspective, lack of courage, fears or desire to dominate? It can often be traced back to an anti-social personality. Psychiatry currently protects such personalities as much as they can. Without that protection, that facade of legitimacy, they would become much less dangerous.

    This is a very important reason why I am against psychiatry. It goes way beyond the fact that they “don’t understand” or are greedy. A lot of people don’t understand a lot of stuff, and a lot of people are greedy. But they don’t do the damage that psychiatry has done on this planet.

  • I agree with you, rebel, in many ways.
    Perhaps when you say “end psychiatry” it means something different to you than what it means to Steve, or others.
    From my perspective, it would be more proper to state the goal as: “Remove all power from the profession currently called “psychiatry” and its practitioners, then find a way to shut out from positions of power all people such as those practitioners, and others in other fields which they have enabled to do harm in the name of help, and find a way for relatively sane people of good intentions to retain power in society, and perhaps some day abolish the madness that motivates those clearly insane beings.”
    The wording needs work.
    But I am trying to convey a concept that I think is correct but that is not totally easy to understand.
    Part of the problem is that many people today have no real concept of Spirit, or if they do, they don’t think it is important. Christians (along with many others who have studied religion) at least have some concept of it. So a Christian can conceive that a person could somehow be convinced to do the Devil’s work. My understanding of how this happens is a little different, as it involves Spirit, but no particular Devil.

    The point is, such persons exist. And they should not be allowed to rule over others! It comes out bad every time. We can imagine that modern psychiatry (known, perhaps, by other names in other times and places) was set up by such people to give them a legitimate facade behind which they could do their evil. And so it, as a profession, attracts such people (along with a few well-intentioned people here and there). Thus to really abolish that profession would deprive such persons of their major power base on Earth. But it would not abolish such persons. Plenty of them, for various reasons of opportunity or intellect, did not make it into psychiatry, and so go about their evil activities in less obvious ways. But to take the power away from psychiatry on Earth would be huge, and to think that psychiatrists, or people very much like them, have not been involved in many of the most despicable activities throughout human history would be naive. If their influence on Earth could be drastically reduced, in theory at least, the planet could become a much calmer place. We might still have all the problems they left us with, but we would have a fighting chance of solving them. If we continue to tolerate such beings in positions of power, I don’t think Earth has a chance.

  • Wow!

    When Britney speaks, CNN listens!

    Take her case and multiply it by a million or more, and you have some idea what is going on on this planet right now. For the criminals these systems serve (or can be persuaded to serve) this is all great “fun.” For the rest of us, this is so deeply disturbing that it’s a little difficult to confront.

    The criminals need this. The mass of humanity does not. But there are few among the saner ones who are courageous enough to stand up to the criminals and call them out. We all know how quickly they will defend their ways with murder. Yet stand up to them we must!

  • Thank you! For me the ultimate argument against the chronic drugging of people is the fact – perhaps it can some day even be proven – that Spirit is the ultimate source of all healing. And Spirit does not need drugs! If anything, Spirit works better without them.

    This is a huge “leap of faith” for most people. Yet I believe that very little traditional faith is actually required to know that this is so. Of course, this is absolutely the last thing any mainstream psychiatrist would want anyone to believe. But I think the few left who kindly practice real therapy would agree with it without hesitation.

  • I am VERY surprised that CNN would cover this!
    What’s going on with that? I have seen the mainstream cover paranormal topics every now and again. Back in the “old days” it was often done in good faith, but more recently it usually has been used as an opportunity to ridicule the assumptions such data tend to support.

    These phenomena sre hard to study because they don’t normally occur under controlled laboratory conditions. But those who wish to study this seriously should do so. Eventually, perhaps, there will develop a basic agreed-upon context for such events. I know I have already formulated such a context, but there is not a lot of agreement on what “flavor” to use, even among those who are quite certain that Spirit is real and should be taken seriously in all aspects of life.

  • I must say, I am leery of any article which starts out with a reference to Benjamin Rush!

    This topic probably deserves more discussion than I am willing to devote to it, but I imagine other readers will extend their remarks far beyond mine.

    I now start (I didn’t always) with the assumption that there are some people who wish to normalize drug use on this planet because it plays into their own plans which are basically political and include no sincere motivation to provide social benefit.

    Anti drug use laws were a crude attempt by others who did have a sincere motivation to provide social benefit to de-normalize drug use. These laws have largely failed. What the people of the world needed was more data (or you could say, an educational program), but the general consensus seemed to be that that was somebody else’s job.

    A lot of people I know not only think drug use is stupid because it does not handle root cause of any condition and poisons the body, but also that it is morally weak. This sometimes gets in the way of their thinking and work in this subject. My group does have the best and most effective drug education program on the planet, as well as the best anti-addiction program, but our resources are not up to the enormity of the problem.

    In this context, “harm reduction” seems like a useful effort on one hand, and on the other hand a cop-out. If it were coupled with an education program designed to inform users of the harmful side effects of drug use, then it would make more sense to me. Without this, it appears that this approach is simply caving in to the interests who want to normalize drug use on this planet. And that very definitely includes psych drug use.

  • Her books are memoirs. They are not “about her personal beliefs.” But if you don’t want to delve into Dena’s work, there is a lot of other material out there on the subject of parapsychology, and reincarnation in particular, done by real academics.

    But you illustrate my point with your own words: “I don’t find that kind of experience very interesting or likely to be credible.” This is the very data we need to understand this whole situation a lot batter, yet you for some reason have little interest in it. This is the conundrum of understanding the human mind! It tends to resist being understood.

  • You aren’t familiar with the quote attributed to a Rockefeller that they started “women’s lib?”

    Or the criminal tactic of throwing the public off their scent by concocting a fake enemy?

    Do you think “racism” against blacks was really caused by whites or “whiteness?” It was caused by criminals (who knows what color they were) to create a never-ending turmoil (they hoped) in the general population. And I’m sure those same criminals had a hand in guiding the civil rights movement.

    I don’t think we credit the criminal class with how much they are actually involved in creating these conflicts through extremely devious means. They can’t do anything useful in society, but they do a great job at muddying the waters around all sorts of issues.

  • Have you read Dena’s books? I don’t care about the religious beliefs in those books. They are about past life recall and the influence of other lifetimes (sometimes called “karma”) on the present lifetime. We can’t get anywhere in psychology unless we realize this. It’s not a matter of “who is right.” It is a matter of what is really true, and what might actually work.

  • This is cool insofar as it is a drugless therapy. But its theory is all brain-based.

    As long as we cling to this failed way of understanding the mind, we risk falling back under the influence of psychiatry and “modern” psychology. There is a whole body of work using Spirit-based theory and practices that needs to be explored.

    When am I going to hear news of someone using a Locational or similar process and what their experiences were with it?

  • Rebel, I speak what I have learned. My sources are “fringe” so I usually don’t mention them. I can’t “prove” what I say. But if my sources are being truthful with me, and if I am relaying what they are telling me faithfully, then I do hope a certain level of validation of basic truth will result.

    I often mention Spirit (one translation for the Greek “psyche”) in my comments. I do hope that at least a few readers will realize I am referring to Ian Stevenson’s group (now led by Jim Tucker) as well as groups more on the fringe, and go ahead and look into some of the subjects they study.

    All the more unbelievable data I relay in my comments comes from either spiritual memory or spiritual perception, so the first thing anyone needs to come to grips with that data is a decent concept of Spirit.

  • The situation she describes is very real.
    If individuals in a local community can’t figure out how to organize and fund a charity clinic that uses workable drugless methods to help people, then those who can’t afford what their insurance will not cover have no choice.
    From other comments, this person sounds like they might be in Florida. I know that CCHR there has a pretty good network of people who help people who have been Baker Acted get out of institutions. But they don’t yet have a network of alternative clinics. And neither does anyone else.

    Being in or near poverty puts you in a different world. Many resources that “average” Americans can afford are not available, and charity resources often serve special interests. The usual advice I hear from my side of the fence is, “figure out how to get out of poverty.” Though there is some validity in that advice, it’s more easily said than done.

    In fact, help in many subjects is weak and hard to come by. This will only get worse the longer psychiatry and its bedfellows continue to poison our thinking and our own self-confidence.

  • These two summary paragraphs are on their face superficial.

    While general social malaise may well be attributable to a “neoliberal economy,” the deepest forms of insanity are also an important contributing factor. Individual insane persons can also cause severe outbreaks of distress among friends and associates. If you then hire the “fox to guard the hen house” you have a perfect recipe for a general emotional – and economic – meltdown.

    I think the “new breed” of rebels need to get their noses out of Das Capital and Critical Theory books and start reading the writings of Dena Merriam!

  • I didn’t read the paper, but this sounds like thumb twiddling to me.

    The Academy has already been “psychiatrized” (“psychologized?”) to such an extent that it has become almost useless as a critic of all motions towards fascism.

    At this point much more than “interdisciplinary research” is needed to move understanding forward. I don’t think anything significant will happen along this line until people are willing to “leave the box” entirely. Will the “disciplines” that participate in this include theology? parapsychology? Would such even be allowed into the discussion? That would be a bare minimum.

    Psychiatry comes from a deep dark place in this universe. It has been in use in one or more forms for more years than you can fit into an Earth calculator (maybe not literally, if you have one that uses scientific notation). Its manifestations here on Earth are actually fairly mild compared to what it has done elsewhere. It is an indispensable tool for control freaks. And if a population can be convinced that “mental illness” is a problem with the brain, as has happened here on Earth, then psychiatry’s dominance can be assured.

    A society has no chance against psychiatry unless it fully embraces the concept of Spirit.

  • Above the level of the case workers and therapists who deal with real people every day and really wish they could do more is a management layer of “professionals” that police their activities and make sure those people don’t get too much real help.

    I knew a social worker who got fired from her job with a non-profit, and I swear it was only because she was trying too hard to help her clients!

    Beyond that, there is a world of useful information out there about how to help other people that is being hidden or held away from helping professionals. I know they exist because I took an extensive course on them. Many have taken this course, but most of them are not in the helping professions because those people have been warned that the group offering this course is “dangerous.” I am sure this is not the only example.

  • Wow.

    We had to read between the lines a bit in this article, but the story is pretty clear: They are barking up the wrong tree when it comes to “genetic biomarkers” and mental health (or “illness”).

    Funny they picked suicide. Suicide is one of the odder human behaviors, and extra difficult to understand since every lifetime ends with death, anyway. So, might not every death, in some way, be a suicide?

    At this point, if psychologists have not figured out the basic mechanisms that push a person down into depression, apathy, self-harm and suicide, then they really need to turn in their sheepskins and go look for another job. It’s really not that hard. Especially if you see a human being as a spiritual being.

    Life in a biological body is degrading even in the best of times. It doesn’t take that many extra personal disasters or extreme pain or just constantly feeling like shit for someone to decide “screw this, I want to start over.” Of course, a lot of suicides don’t realize that they will be starting over. So when they get their new life (new body) and get settled in it, the first challenge that may come up could well be related to the fact that they abandoned the last life early.

    Here I am talking about this as if everyone is on the same page. I do that because that is what I hope to achieve. I realize that almost no one in the community (yet) understands life this way. But, as it is a much closer approximation to how life actually works, I will continue to talk about it. As I see it, we begin to see life this way, or the cult of psychiatric drugs and detention gets stronger and stronger.

  • I think I understand your basic viewpoint on all this.

    But realize: When you mention your desire to “understand how my brain functioned” you indicate that your are using one of the basic premises of “modern” psychology: that it is a question of brain function. Of course there are things that can go wrong with the brain. But that’s neurology. The mind (and spirit) are the proper focus of psychology, not the brain.

    And because psychology has chosen to remain focused on the brain, it has ignored or dismissed all the advances that have already been made in understanding the mind, spirit, and life. Those advances have already led to better treatments. Those treatments already exist! But because psychology is so blindered, most people interested in the subject do not even realize that advances have been made. So they never talk about those advances, they never study them or try them or test them to see if they work. That’s the main point of my comment.

    I know that there is a reluctance to entertain the possibility that people are born with certain tendencies of personality. That’s because this is looked for in the genes and not found there. It’s not in the genes! In every new life, the being brings its personality with it. Though its memory is crippled, and it thinks it is “just a child,” it isn’t just a child. This is why a better understanding of life is so important to understanding personality, and the anti-social personality in particular. “Modern” psychology teaches that the personality “develops” during childhood. That isn’t correct. It has been developing for the entire existence of the being, and can continue to change and develop in this life.

  • Though the interviewer in this podcast was not that astute, this whole issue is very important, and Miranda is quite astute regarding this.

    The big question here is how conservatorship and guardianship law could be misused to benefit people who are operating very close to the level of criminal. And of course the other big issue that is relevant to us is how much power the current messages about “mental health” carry in current society.

    Both of these issues reflect a creeping corruption in society. Psychiatry and psychology, with their morality-neutral teachings, have a lot to do with this creep. Those of us who are here as “survivors” as well as those of us who are merely critics should realize to what extent we have been staring at the beast that has been putting all of us in harm’s way to a greater and greater extent over recent years. How and why our current systems got so bad are just as worthy questions, it seems to me, as how to fix them.

  • “Agree to disagree” and “respectfully” are values increasingly difficult to attain in the world today.

    I believe that one reason this is so is because the idea was used by criminals (anti-social personalities) to convince some portion of society that their “viewpoints” should be respected. The only result of this is that criminals have now walked forward into the light and asked us to accept them as our new leaders.

    When this happened in the past, it had to be done either secretly or with brute force. Now we are expected to greet these aspiring leaders with “kindness” and “respect.” I am not willing to indulge in either with such beings. The only way to “love” such a being is to call them out, and expose their deception.

    Of course, in the context of a forum or other attempt at rational discussion, basic good manners are to be expected. We should realize, however, that these have now been totally laid aside in some arenas. Behind the bad manners of the righteously indignant lie deeper and much more troubling attitudes, beliefs, and actions.

  • Though this prose was a bit dense for me, I can see that there is value in this story and this experience.

    What is frustrating for me is to see how difficult it was for Christine to understand what was going on with “Bill” and with her based only on the theories of “modern” psychology. She was so inclined to give Bill the benefit of the doubt, when what was really needed was a recognition of how insane he was acting and a very firm handling that would put as much distance as possible between him and her.

    Though I am in no position to diagnose, Bill’s behaviors, as portrayed here, were typical of an anti-social personality. Such people are extremely dangerous! There is zero expectation that such an individual will behave or react as “normal” people do. One of the great failures of “modern” psychology is to downplay to the point of utter ignorance the destructive role such personalities play in life.

    You see this, of course, as “stress” in personal relationships, but also in the areas of finance, politics, education, business and religion. Living in constant poverty is a form of stress. Living under a dictatorship is a form of stress. So would be war, of course. Living with a punitive school system is a form of stress. Living under the constant barrage of propaganda from the corporate world is a form of stress. And living in a fanatical religious culture is also a form of stress. What is common to all these problems that cause so many critics to call them “systemic?” The anti-social personality. You get rid of that person’s influence in a group and you get peace, calm, relative sanity.

    A truly modern psychology would recognize this, as well as understand the mind as an energetic structure rather than a biological structure and the personality as a spiritual construct and not just a mental construct. Until psychology (and psychiatry) is willing to advance in these directions, it is much safer to just walk away from it and take up horticulture of solar power or some other subject less warped by the broken understandings of broken beings.

  • I just want to add – since we are getting into this realm – that I don’t believe in the One Creator idea, either. But under the circumstances, it works better than a lot of other belief systems.

    The question of whether or not The Creator gives each of us a “path” goes beyond my scope of interest. As far as I am concerned, we choose our own paths, though some of our choices can be forgotten.

    Free will only becomes an issue in situations where exercising it could be a problem, such as life on Earth. Few people realize how much freedom of action we could have compared to how much we seem to have here on Earth. But to characterize any living thing as having no “free will” seems to me a logical impossibility. You have to make choices in life, even if they are limited.

    Evolution is about as “scientific” as the Christian idea that each soul only visits Earth once. These ideas are based on sets of data that are too limited in scope. From my point of view, they were good guesses, but they are not correct.

  • “Help” will always be an entirely subjective proposition, won’t it?
    While I can imagine what might be most helpful to a person in emotional or mental distress, and might base my attempt to help on my idea, I won’t know if the person has been helped unless I ask them.

    There is, perhaps, a strata in society that is so lacking in self-awareness that they would be unable to tell you if they had been helped or not. And there are others who just wish someone would help them to die. But the great majority have some general concept of what helping and being helped really means.

    So your “measure” in the field of mental health should be: Does the person feel helped? Shouldn’t it be? I suppose a person could become so deluded that he confuses harm for help. But most people should be able to give you a straight answer to this question, and why would we settle for any other measure?

  • I am happy to hear that you have done this work and arrived at the insights you have.

    “Helplessness” I suppose is the emotional description for the condition that so many seem so willing to accept as their easier route to death. I wonder if you would agree that the political corollary to this emotional condition would be “slavery?” One could also describe it as “imprisonment.”

    People (like myself, I suppose) who are more interested in the political ramifications of the human condition tend to miss or pass over some of the emotional (psychological) subtleties involved in the situation. But anyone who has studied modern politics knows the importance that human psychology plays in subjects like propaganda and voting. So the two fields are most closely linked.

    If there were a basic, but hidden, impulse at work on this planet that operated in favor of slavery, that would to some extent explain why so many people succumb to this, and why others strive to resist it with such ferocity.

    In your words, “people used to resourcefully rely on their own capabilities to solve their problems.” This is in fact a saner mental condition, as most people who have studied the problem would probably agree. This expresses not only a desire to be free, but an ability to be. If anything changed on this planet, I suppose it would be that the continual pressure against freedom (and for slavery, in political terms) has more and more convinced greater numbers of persons that, even if they desire freedom, they are no longer able to really attain it.

    Part of the information that I have been studying explains this situation in a very big-picture way. It is unbelievable, so I won’t bother to try to explain it here, but the bottom line is that an impulse towards slavery has been discovered. At the same time, psychological (or one could say spiritual) methods for removing this impulse have been developed. Thus, I see some hope for the situation. If it were not for this, I would be extremely pessimistic about our future. Those who want to enslave us have superior control technologies. Whether we can act quickly enough to successfully stall and eventually overturn their efforts is still very much up in the air.

  • To me this reads like a confession.

    If psychiatrists, or psychiatry, were more self-aware, this is what they would realize they were doing in order to take advantage of other people.

    But if you want to travel down a path of more interest to someone like me, it would be: How did psychiatry get led out of psychotherapy and into drug pushing? What were the forces behind this?

    In some sense, the answer to this question is the same reason that so many people embrace “modern” psychiatry even though it doesn’t work. We all ARE mentally ill, to the extent that we are incapable of taking sufficient personal responsibility to straighten ourselves and others out, but prefer to let “experts” push us into the trap of irresponsibility. If we continue to embrace drug-taking and its associated justifications (in the form of “scientific theories”) we will never exit this trap, but continue to spiral down into less and less liveliness and free will. The fun of living will eventually become totally absent.

  • This is an interesting commentary. It seems to say that people (patients?) are self-diagnosing a panic attack when something else is really going on. Or clinicians might be doing this, too?

    To me, this just continues to betray the enormous lack of knowledge about people and the human mind displayed by most clinicians, and of course, most people who are being informed by these clinicians, or other “mental experts.” How long does this have to continue before someone inside the subject begins to get the idea that they need to figure this out?

    When someone behaves in a way that seems irrational or inappropriate to the situation, we have to realize that the information, instructions or commands that caused that behavior must have come from somewhere. We normally call that place “the mind.” There are two main pathways for information to enter the mind. One is an analytical, rational and conscious pathway. The other is a non-analytical, irrational, and unconscious pathway. The main goal of therapy is to put the being in a position where they no longer need to rely on any of the mental information acquired via the unconscious pathway. That puts them back in full control of their behavior, which is where they ought to be. The apparent fact that most therapists have little or no idea how to accomplish this is a huge condemnation of the subject. They have had ample time to figure this out, and they have failed. We must assume that figuring this out, and thereby really helping people, was not their major purpose in getting into the field of psychology. What, then, was?

  • Is this important, or just some indication of turf wars?

    The doctors want to keep their “patients” on drugs.
    The therapists want a reason to deliver therapy.
    So this “study” is pro-therapy, anti-doctor.

    What about actually helping someone get well? Although this issue is outside of the scope of this little article, it is dismaying how outside the scope of “mental health professionals” it seems to be.

  • Great to hear a little more from you on this! Yes, the physical body and the light body are intimately connected. I have not studied kundalini, but my understanding of it is that it is basically an intermediate energetic system through which the being controls and corrects its body. All power to heal lies completely and solely with Spirit.

    I was raised atheist, too, but not aggressively so. I sort of “backed in” to an awareness of Spirit, and now consider this central to our path to freedom and reawakening. I don’t fret too much over the possibility that I might miss my chance, but some of my friends do.

    I will visit your site. But I am not as thoroughly hopeful about the future. It is true we now have a route to spiritual freedom in place, which is a first for this universe. But it would also be a first if this route actually won out on this planet. From what I know, this has never happened anywhere else. And right now the bad guys still have most of us convinced that Spirit is just a childish fantasy. But we know that’s not true, don’t we?

  • The problem I see with psychiatry is that it was at the right place and at the right time to take advantage of some cultural shifts that have allowed its practitioners to become materially quite opulent. The price they paid was spiritual death.

    I would have liked to hear more about the spiritual experiences. I see this subject as central not only to the problem of “mental health” but to many many other problems (or bad situations) around the planet (and indeed, around the universe).

    At this point, those who want drug-based medicine to rule supreme on Earth are very close to a total takeover. By some accounts, their smugness might be the only road left that could lead to their undoing. A LOT of forces want the general population to be totally afraid of dying and of all things spiritual. This is their path to total control. Our path to total freedom from control has been mapped, but only traveled by a few so far, as under current conditions that journey is expensive and time-consuming.

    I, for example, have probably missed my chance. About all I can do now is sit on the sidelines and cheer on the ones who are making this happen and keeping this road open and workable. There may be other roads to the goal of freedom from tyranny. I don’t yet know what they are. But there are many very intent on achieving this for themselves and their friends and families, so there is always the chance that they will make some surprising advance that will give us all renewed hope.

  • This is fascinating to find out more about the scene in your country!

    My understanding about the people interviewed for this study is that they had their own experience in the system, then went on to become fully-trained psychotherapists (or similar) so they could continue to work in the system.

    From the one woman I know the best who is considering getting a Masters in Psychology, she seems simply very fascinated with people who have emotional problems that affect their cognition and behavior (as she has also experienced in herself). There seems to be an almost magnetic pull to such people. I believe this phenomenon may have something to do with the kinds of people who end up practicing as professionals in this field.

  • I am amazed at how many people do this. Isn’t it almost a Stockholm Syndrome sort of a situation? I know at least one young woman who is considering this.

    What they miss, of course, as patients, is the incredible amounts of pressure within the profession to not step out of line.

    I know of a very few who were trained more or less conventionally and then left. They did OK. They actually found better therapeutic methods outside of the field.

    But to stay in a field that is so broken yet so irrationally defended would seem to me highly unwise.

  • This “inside view” of the practice is very telling.

    What is sad to me is how unaware she is (apparently) of all the alternative ways to help people mentally, emotionally (and spiritually), other than psychiatry.

    This demonstrates how much of a stranglehold psychiatry still holds on the public’s general understanding of what people are, why they suffer, and what should be done to help them.

    What I hope we can do here is end that intellectual tyranny. It is obviously driving the thought and behavior of both therapists AND patients! Should we be surprised that so many people prefer to take a pill over actually doing the tough work to sort out one’s thoughts and emotions with the help of another person? This is the low-confront, low-responsibility answer to all our troubles and has been pushed at us for decades now from all directions. We are inclined towards this “solution” as it is, or we would not be humans living on a planet, but instead spiritual beings playing in the stars.

    This woman in fact has many choices for fulfilling work in the healing professions. That she will need to leave the “mainstream” to do this is just how things are right now. I wish her well.

  • With the accreditation body? I’m not sure if she tells the exact story on that. She was probably getting pushback from them, but I don’t know the details.

    For those who might not be aware: She was a victim of traditional psych treatment. She knew it didn’t work, so she searched out something that would work better and started applying those techniques to her clients, mostly professional women. She decided to stop using psych drugs completely.

  • Oh boy.

    This guy has a good heart, but he’s riding the slow boat to China.
    You can “comb the medical literature for alternative treatments” until the cows come home. You won’t find them, because mental difficulties are not basically medical problems.
    Why did Kelly Brogan give up her Psych license? Because it isn’t needed to heal people!

    The little out-ethics incidents that he brings up here are only symptoms of a giant problem he either refuses to confront or can’t even fathom: Psychiatry is not there to make people well!

    Individual psychiatrists may feel differently. Some take their little wins where they can get them. Others like Kelly end up leaving the profession. I even know a psychologist with clinical experience who finally joined CCHR!

    Without a recognition of the reality of Spirit, psychology and psychiatry are mere hollow shells of what they should be. What the hell does “psyche” mean, after all?

  • It is true that these authors live within the world of academic research and feel somewhat constrained to be “polite” to their colleagues. Others of us, in the field or not, feel the time for politeness has long passed. And in many ways I agree. I see no particular benefit, at this point, in being polite to psychiatry.

  • This does remind me of the book “Looking Backward” which I read with interest when I was much younger.

    It proposed a system of group dining somewhat like we have currently with our massive reliance on dining out (at least among certain socioeconomic groups).

    I have experienced this for real where I used to work, and it did seem to be workable. There is a social aspect to dining out that we miss when we dine apart (or alone) in our houses or apartments. For me, though, it is not financially viable. If it were, I would do it more often. The relative nutritional value of the food, however, I cannot speak to. I would not stop taking vitamins!

  • These are good points. However, I don’t totally share your basic assumptions nor thus your conclusions.

    People’s problems are not caused by an inherent defect (at least not a genetic or biological one) but neither are they really caused by environmental or social factors. Yet if environmental or social factors are too extreme, more mental and emotional problems will trigger.

    So improving environmental factors is therapeutic, but does not handle root cause. How this is best done is open to discussion. The U.S. used to be better at this than it is now, though there were always factors present in the U.S. that weren’t significant in most of Europe.

    I don’t have hard data about Europe, but I share the perception that they are a bit more easy-going than Americans and that their welfare programs seem to be more effective. One possibility I have heard mentioned is that the nationalized health services that exist in most European countries have taken a lot of power and funding away from organized medicine. I’d be interested to learn if that’s a valid line of reasoning. It seems plausible. From the information I am getting, organized medicine is a huge part of our difficulties here in the U.S.

  • This is a good point. The demands from one’s environment can get so onerous that they can begin to become suppressive, or in other words, promote poor mental health.

    These days, I don’t know that it is any longer “normal” to have good body health. It is difficult – possibly even expensive – to achieve. This is a whole issue in itself, yet related to this one of mental health.

    If I had to name a higher-priority factor, though, I would say it was getting enough sleep.

  • These two have been working at this for many years now, and I am certainly happy to hear from them!

    There is not doubt in my mind that a healthy body makes a huge difference in our ability to stand up to the crap that life throws at us.

    As Bonnie has reported in the past, micronutrient supplementation, in one case at least, totally handled a psychotic break problem so that it never recurred.

    But this still leaves us with the whole world of cognition to understand and properly address. The brain and nervous system play a very major role in body health, but in cognitive health, this is not the case (assuming the body IS healthy). And I am still not seeing the discussions that are necessary to bring this subject forward in the direction of a useful resolution.

  • Well! This is a special story!

    One theme that shines through brightest for me is that most people do not have a clue about “mental health” or what to do when someone loses theirs.

    Everyone in this story had something going on. But the author and her friend were obviously still living on the safe side, while the other three (all related) were not. The landlady somehow had the wherewithal to own two houses. Yet she was not competent as a landlord, nor as a parent it seems.

    I am relatively sure that police intervention would have done nothing to improve the situation. There is a possibility that a very skilled and courageous health professional (or a team) could have made a difference, yet such people are a rarity today.

    It is clear to me that basic psychological literacy is as important as the 3Rs. Things happen too fast in interpersonal relations. There is no time to call in “professionals” to intervene when shit happens. Yet we have no system in place that could even remotely provide this, as our current mainstream theories are not even competent ones. Until we have an understanding of human life that is workable and useful, we are probably better off just hobbling along as we always did before the mighty institutions of psychology and psychiatry appeared on the scene. If we are going to have professionals in this field, we must find a way to make them competent. Meanwhile, these “crazy” women did the best they could.

  • My first thought for a very traditional but non-medical healing art is chiropractic. There are also schools that teach Naturopathy, and some centers that practice “functional medicine.” In the pattern of traditional psychotherapy, but drugless (and I hear quite effective), is the work Kelly Brogan is doing. Numerous others have carved out “life coach” sorts of practices along similar lines.

    The traditional spiritual healing practice that I am most aware of is Reiki. There are other centers, usually concentrated in certain geographic areas where more potential customers live, that provide various therapies that are more spiritually-based.

    I personally volunteered to work for my church, and did so for 26 years. But that’s not a normal life by a long ways. However, if you really want to help your fellow human beings, don’t expected to be treated as “normal” (even though you would expect that such an urge is normal). In spite of lip service to the contrary, corporate culture has taken over most mainstream healing practices and by long experience (if not blatant admission) the one being “helped” does not come first in those people’s minds.

  • This is a very perceptive comment on the state of the (mental) healing arts in academia!

    There are several pathways you could follow that are not part of traditional academia. I don’t recommend social work, as it was in the process of being taken over by academic psychology 60-plus years ago when my father got into it! That said, there are many of us who would like to spend at least some part of our lives doing “social work.”

    There is still a lot going on today in the “alternative” healing arts. They range from extremely spiritually-oriented practices to more traditional approaches that simply use different models for how people lose their health and alternative (usually non-drug) therapies.

    If you would prefer to become an activist in the field, there are some people and organizations doing that work, but that’s about all the information I have. I am a member of one such group, and there are others, but I am not that well-informed about them.

    I urge you remain wary of the various “easy” or “sure” paths that may be presented to you. These days, to live with truth, do the right thing, and learn and practice effective help is NOT easy. That doesn’t mean it’s not rewarding!

  • This is an interesting article for me, as I know a young woman in a very similar position who is considering to go back to school to study yet more – psychology.

    I never cease to be amazed at our ability to give other people the benefit of the doubt. Even though it is obvious to most of us now that these fields (psychiatry, psychology) tend to attract the criminally insane, so many continue to hold out hope that they can be “reformed.” In some ultimate sense, they may be right. But I would never set foot in an environment like that now without the knowledge that I gained outside of that environment. And I would know that I was entering into what is basically a traumatizing (we call it suppressive) environment for the purposes of studying it as I would any other dysfunctional group, and with no hope of getting any useful information from it, or even a degree.

    But I think a better use of my time would probably consist of walking away and see if I could find a calling or profession that is actually acting like it still cares about people and is helping others for real.

  • There are some good realizations here!

    I am constantly gobsmacked by how upset people can get about families, organizations and other social necessities. But there is a grain of truth in the attitude that we are all capable of a totally independent existence. It’s just that most of us would find this unbearable, and you can’t do it while coexisting with a human body.

    There are many levels of connectedness – or it could be called interdependence – that we should realize exist and learn to appropriately embrace. Therapy MUST address all of them, and indeed this is one reason I ended my traditional therapy (because it didn’t).
    These levels of connection include: 1) Our body (yes, it is NOT us, but something we are conected to!) 2) Our sexual partner (if we have one) and children 3) The groups we work with and enjoy time with 4) All of mankind 5) The rest of biology 6) The rest of the physical universe 7) The rest of the spirit world and 8) Everything else, often referred to as a Supreme Being or Creator.

    My training involves all these connections to some extent, probably 2) being the weakest one in my own experience.

    I now use a therapy paradigm that involves training a bunch of students to deliver a certain type of therapy, then pairing them up to deliver that to each other. There is one supervisor to watch over us while we do this, and another one to assess our individual technical needs and progress.

    Likewise, all group members, but particularly staff, are trained in group skills and how to be better group members.

    The aim, though, is not to eliminate individuality, which we see as the base or core on which everything else is built. We are expected to, and usually do, become stronger individuals as we become more skilled at being group members and helping each other. If our training left out any of the major kinds of connection, it would be much less effective. It is clear to us that the traditional therapeutic approach of most psychologists, psychiatrists and doctors is far too limited to handle anything other than temporary emergency situations. I used to cut these healers some slack for not yet coming up to speed. But I don’t like to do it any more. Now better alternatives in all the healing arts are everywhere in use, and the traditional people have no excuse beyond laziness or apathy.

    Step out of the way! The alternative mental health practices are HERE and are taking over!

  • This article tells a story of vested interests and corporate greed. It can get published in the Times because it stays away from the more important issues.

    People are suffering and dying because workable solutions are being suppressed or ignored. Is corporate greed involved? Of course. Are vested interests involved? Of course.

    But we are talking about premeditated murder! Willful acts of evil. There HAS to more behind this than the tired old explanations we keep hearing. And there is. We all look to psychology to explain this to us, to give us the answer. And we all look to government to protect us from this, to at least provide adequate regulation. But they don’t, because they were both early victims of this menace which more and more seems ready to ruin an entire planet to accomplish its ends.

    This menace depends upon the probability that not enough people will become aware enough and strong enough soon enough to stop the destruction. Our only hope is to accomplish the improbable.

  • Wow, what a communication!

    I am dismayed, really, at what was accomplished in those 10 years. But I am sure the writer feels a sense of accomplishment. She is obviously thankful for Billie, her therapist.

    How could she have known that Billie, in her training and throughout her career, could have been exposed to all sorts of data that would have made her much more certain and effective as a therapist? She probably could have saved lives and restored abilities far beyond what she, mostly through her loving intention, expected and accomplished.

    Love itself has tremendous healing powers. But today we do have access to material that can augment quite a bit our natural inclination to love and help each other. I certainly hope that some day the stories arising out of our experiences with the “mental health” system will be more stirring and miraculous than what we have read here.

  • To me, this is a rich example – in its verbiage if nothing else – of how far these people can stick their heads up their butts.

    I am convinced that most of these “researchers” would prefer to remain confused and ignorant to the end of time. If this were not their secret goal, wouldn’t they look a little harder in directions that are turning eyes in other fields, such as the ever-growing parapsychology literature, or the results being obtained by some of the more serious spiritual practices, such as fully awake past life recall?

    The issue of child psychology is particularly troubling, as this is a perfect time of life to start getting oneself straightened out and flying right, before the full weight of adult life falls on one’s shoulders. Yet I am sure many kids today, with absent or over-worked parents, feel that weight and need help coping. The field of “mental health” has the potential to help younger people in many ways. But in its current state, it is usually causing more trouble than it is worth. At this point I would not hesitate to council parents and their kids to stay away from the “mental health” system!

  • I have no problem with people discussing how psychology, or the “mental health” system, relate to politics. But my perception is that most people don’t understand the various aspects of politics or the various aspects of spiritual existence well enough to bring much clarity to this issue.

    One meaning of “politics” concerns governance, policy and control. Here we see the interplay between those who see freedom as the more workable principle and those who see slavery as the more workable principle. One of our biggest problems with “mental health” currently is that it appears to be firmly in the slavery camp, even when it gives lip service to the contrary. Blaming it all on the brain is not liberating. Validating the role of Spirit could be liberating.

    Another meaning of “politics” concerns one’s personal sense of power in various situations, whether or not they are overtly competitive. Can one stand up for what one believes is right or best or workable at work or at home? I believe that a central goal of “mental health” should be to increase one’s sense of personal power, or certainty; self control. The current trend seems more geared to “helping” people fit in.

    And then we have the meaning of “politics” involving political parties, social justice issues, and events that come up and affect us in various ways. The amount of deception involved in many of these activities is seldom fully recognized. Here, I think the ideal goal for “mental health” would be to help each individual get up to the point where they can freely make up their own mind about each issue that presents itself, fully cognizant of the likely underlying power plays that result in distorted information (“fake news”) and similar attempts to influence public perception and opinion. Here the actual emotional state of the individual is very important. Someone who is fearful will react very differently than someone who is cheerful, when presented with the exact same event or set of facts.

    All these aspects of politics interact and they are all relevant to the subject of mental health and Spirit. But where discussions of mental health or psychology don’t even take Spirit into account, the likelihood that those discussions will result in any conclusions that are useful or workable is small. We might as well be talking about sports or the weather.

  • I must admit to you that my “question” was somewhat rhetorical.

    But I am dismayed that in this day and age, even an appeal to “freedom” or “human rights” often falls on deaf ears.

    Yes, we certainly need a balance between thinking and doing. Our technical words should be pronouncable and not overly flowery or evasive. Our theories should inform practices that are definite and doable, a bit like we have in the engineering world.

    The current challenge seems to be in the field of ethics. We are allowing certain players to stifle unwanted discussions and punish unwanted activities. It is a very grave situation. It seems we must now appeal to the average man’s most basic sensibilities and repugnance for dishonesty. But if the majority continue to allow themselves to be lied to and mistreated, things could become even rougher for those who can see plainly that this is what is occurring.

    Some think that a fairly major and shocking event will need to happen that will finally force people to realize that they are being horribly manipulated and at the same time give them a sane way to respond. I shudder to think what such an event might look like. Barring that, it seems to me to be very important for those who are more aware to support each other in speaking out and not chop at each other for making minor mistakes (or perhaps handle these things privately). But the forces of “evil” are very great, and we should steel ourselves for some defeats. We can’t give up.

  • What you are saying here is very important!

    After I started to get a better grip on philosophy and older teachings, my favorite word became “love.” I also like “spirit.”

    I wonder sometimes if most modern people have any idea what these words mean!

    Yes, I am “modern” in that I hope for improvement. But not through a drug or some fancy technology.
    How do we convince more “modern” people to reconnect with the wisdom-seeking traditions?

  • How did you learn that we are not born with knowledge? Would you be willing to consider the possibility that this is an incorrect datum? If it were found that beings arrive in this life already equipped with lots of knowledge, would that change your ideas about what factors influence human behavior?

  • Wow. I see you put considerable effort into working out an understanding of all this that made sense to you. I am not familiar with most of your sources, but there are obviously many well-intentioned thinkers out there who actually want to help people, and are arriving at ideas that are a lot more workable than traditional psychiatry or psychology.

    I am personally very convinced that allowing Spirit into the discussion is extremely important. But in my experience many people have a cognitive block or unwillingness on this subject. Others like me introduce the subject indirectly using more pedestrian topics (like assisting someone to recover from an injury, or organize their business better) but I have decided to aim directly at the actual target of the subject, which many of us still call “mental illness.”

  • “John Doe,” these are valuable insights! What study, may I ask, has led you to these conclusions?

    As I acknowledge the existence of Spirit, I can point to “trauma” as a key factor in mental-emotional distress without blaming all the people around me for the rough situations that they have contributed to. We can always look into past lives and find trauma considerably more abusive – and more hidden – than most trauma we see inflicted on others today. And while the same mechanism you detail in your comment also results in the impulse to deny Spirit, it puts everyone on Earth on a more even footing, as the experiences that trouble most of us happened very long ago, and we could in no way point to anyone living today and pronounce, “that’s the guy who made me crazy!” This gives us a path forward, and that path is being followed. I just wish more were aware of it and willing to explore it with more sincerity and less suspicion!

  • This article would qualify as a rant. While Megan’s points are all well-taken, she admits “I don’t know how to change a culture…”

    It should be noted that, besides the fact that cultures on Earth were more diverse in the past, they were also less criminal for the most part. So, someone DID know how to change cultures, and did succeed in doing so!

    The subject we are looking at has a name: ponerology. It is not a well-known subject, as the people currently “in charge” don’t want us to know how they succeeded in accomplishing what Megan describes above. Political ponerology is an interdisciplinary study of social issues primarily associated with Polish psychiatrist Andrzej Łobaczewski. According to Wikipedia, “A form of government interesting to ponerologists is one they have called pathocracy, in which individuals with personality disorders (especially psychopathy) occupy positions of power and influence.”

    So, since socially pathological individuals figured out how to dominate our current culture, it should be possible for saner people to learn how they did this, then invent a parallel movement that could result in the culture being returned to a more sane operating basis.

    It is always a bit excruciating to me to hear someone complain about their cultural (or personal) environment and so hear them describe the various characteristics of the sociopath as I learned them many years ago. What Megan rants against, then, is the same thing that sane beings have always ranted against: The anti-social personality. Until recently (my lifetime) we had no clue how to detect and handle such people, and repeatedly made the mistake of elevating them to positions of power due to their shrewd promises that if they were so elevated, they would handle “everything bad” in life. We have finally learned know how to detect these liars and handle them, and – in theory at least – how to remove their destructive influences from our cultures to attain a saner way of life. If we do not now learn these lessons and use this newly-gained knowledge, we are condemning ourselves to lifetimes more, if not an eternity, of the kind of suffering and abuse that Megan so ably describes above.

  • All I see here is a veiled admission that psychologists and psychiatrists don’t know what they are talking about.

    We already know the major causes of distress and suffering on Earth. To turn the natural reactions of people to the results of the criminal practices of inept leaders into a “global mental health crisis” was one of Big Pharma’s boldest marketing victories. Suddenly all the poor and downtrodden of Earth became clients of the “mental health system!”

    But the ordinary sufferings of life ARE NOT mental health issues! The ones with the issues are the ones causing the suffering! And “solving” human suffering by creating a socialist Utopia won’t solve the mental health problem, because oppression and poverty have nothing to do with why people go insane. At best, they can be triggers. But the rich are just as likely, if not more so, to be deranged than the poor and oppressed.

    I would be most happy if mental health researchers and practitioners would concentrate on the criminally insane and leave the rest of us alone. But they are unlikely to do this, because it is difficult to look in the mirror and honestly see what is really there.

  • For me, an important part in all this is the recognition of the existence of “spiritually destroyed” individuals. They have so turned away from their own spiritual identity that they become disgusted with the subject and violently fight against it. One of the big challenges in returning to a love-centered society is learning how to deal with these spiritually “dead” individuals in a loving way but also in a way that protects society from their irrational destructive impulses.

  • Realize, though, Steve, that pushing the problem away from us and talking instead about “systems” also tends to push the solutions away from us.

    If we can understand that societal systems are composed of individuals, and that through the action of individuals systems can be changed (such as the outlawing of slavery), this gives us a path to change that starts with individuals and goes towards new agreements about what is acceptable and valuable in a society.

    We have seen various systems set up with the best of intentions fail in the hands of people whose awareness had not been elevated enough to operate those systems with honesty and real compassion. (The “mental health system” being perhaps one example.) So, the way I see it, the real work needs to be done at the level of individuals, and as their awareness shifts, they will adjust their systems to align better with the new-found awareness.

  • What a valuable essay! Written with much passion and clarity.
    And yet it begs the question: How do we correct this deficit of love in modern society?
    I can only say that if I did not know what I learned during my lifetime, I would be in despair on this subject.
    We find ourselves in a very tight spot. The criminals of the planet seem poised like vultures, waiting for their prey to buckle and fall under the unbearable pressures of life. Though you may not believe me, I am quite certain we have lived through this sort of situation before. And every previous time, love lost. We only have a chance this time because we have become more certain of some basic truths about ourselves which give us the capacity to rehabilitate our ability to love. Now it is only a question of how quickly we can work to rehabilitate this in people, while the enemies of love work in the opposite direction. I was warned that the road back would not be easy to travel. This is certainly proving to be the case.

  • It is wonderful to hear of your experience!

    I can only suggest that you work to clarify your understanding of Spirit so that you may benefit more from your awareness of it.

    YOU are Spirit! The flow you speak of is something that comes from your interaction with the physical. A harmonious interaction produces a flow of pleasure. A “dissonant” interaction can produce pain.

    You, as Spirit, have the capability of improving your control over your life, so that the flows (emotions) you experience are more balanced and feel right to you. It all depends on what you are willing to learn, what skills you are most interested in developing.

  • This article touches me. I have been involved in many of the forms of music mentioned here.

    It is interesting that it ends with a nod to the importance of Spirit. You know this word in English also has the same root meaning: breath!

    But that brings up the concepts covered in the introductory paragraphs. It refers to our supposed “evolution” from ape-like creatures. To me, that whole narrative was an attempt to demean Spirit and reduce us to animals. It is a false narrative, but today if you are “educated” then you have to believe it! I see our reach for music as a Spiritual yearning for the beauty and harmony of earlier times, now lost. Music, well-made, lends beauty to anything it accompanies, words in particular.

    I was most involved with music in my mid-20s. And those were happy years for me! These days many in that age group are suffering. They should spend more time playing music together!

    For a year I was involved in Gamelan Sekar Jaya. It is a musical non-profit devoted to Balinese music. And indeed I played the gong! And I experienced that “spiritual strength” of the sound first hand.

    I also learned Afro-Cuban dance, which is indeed dominated by clave, which I became very familiar with. And I learned Greek folk dance, which is another community or group participation type of musical experience.

    I have also experienced how group play tends to socialize individuals and to identify those who are having a rougher time. In one work group we had “team games” where we tossed a ball around to each other as we stood in a circle. The ones having a harder time being group members liked to slam the ball high into the air, instead of throwing it to someone else with the intention that they would catch it!

    I studied African music when I was a young teenager and continued to be interested in it. Dance is an important part of the African experience and is traditionally done in large groups. The drumming is important, but if you don’t move to it, it gets boring.

    In our (Western) culture, music as a group experience – and group experience in general – has been devalued in favor of individual experience and personal mastery. There is something to be said for both approaches. The Western approach has its political benefits. The community approach found in so many places has greater emotional and mental benefits. We still need to find a better balance between these. The realization that we are a manifestation of Spirit could, I think, lead us to this better balance.

  • Exiting a decayed body after death normally restores
    any lost ability to remember.

    If you are having an hallucination, that records into memory as an experience. It probably came from a real screw up of the normal mental mechanisms. But whatever earlier incidents might have been involved are still intact, and the hallucination experience is intact, too. Probably just hard to reach.

  • OK, needless to say, you see it as a fairly complex system with recordings scattered all over across numerous physical parts of the body. With that understanding, my concepts won’t make very much sense to you.

    All I can say about my concept of memory is that it is workable from a therapeutic viewpoint. It also explains some of the vagaries of “inherited behaviors” and things like “child geniuses” and similar phenomena.

    I see it as an energetic structure into which experience is recorded more or less automatically. Sort of like an energetic CD. (DVD?). This is maintained by a being, not by a body. When the being leaves the body, so do its memories. The whole process of therapy, and life in this physical world, revolves around how the being uses this energy structure.

    To complicate things a little, there seems to be entities that follow bodies around and maintain their own memories at a physiological level. And a “higher” being that flirts around a bit more who deals with the more conceptual aspects of experience.

    So our difficulties stem largely, I suspect, from how different our models are. Remembering, hypnosis, forgetting, confusions about what really happened, those are all part of a process in my model, not part of memory.

  • Only problem is, memory is not a brain function. I believe what most drugs do is distract or aggravate the being in various different ways, producing emotional reactions and affecting his ability to control his own attention (recall process). To the extent that a drug could “switch on” some sort of neurological or physiological “alarm,” the condition could become permanent.

    But yes, we do know that all sorts of drugs affect ability to remember and many other cognitive functions.

  • oldhead, I know the mind as something actually physical. But it is made out of energy that is not visible to the eye. The being, though, can “see” it (perceive it). That’s a common way we remember things. Experience is stored in the mind as “pictures” and the being can locate pictures he wants and “view” them. So in that sense, I can agree that the mind is as “real as my hand.”

  • Reading through this was painful for me; I didn’t make it all the way to the end.

    Here is one of many areas of psychology (or what I might term the study of human experience), that is in great need of a reevaluation. We need to begin to take the work of parapsychologists such as Ian Stevenson more seriously.

    Once you consider even the possibility that past life experience could have some bearing on this life outcomes, the current version of the “nature versus nurture” debate must be thrown away.

    I am totally persuaded that the “blank slate” idea is a fallacy. Furthermore, genetics are only one factor in what a newborn starts with. On top of this, “environmental factors” (nurture) begin to influence child development at conception, not birth.

    Thus, if we actually want to DO something to improve intelligence in children and adults, we might as well assume that it can be influenced by nurture. Otherwise, why bother with all these studies? And the data I have indicate that nurture can play an important role in intelligence. But so can nature!

    If society weren’t nearing a serious tipping point, perhaps I would be more restrained in my comments. My judgement is that we only have about a year to turn things around and start getting things right. Otherwise, A slick, modern, and covert tyranny will engulf us, and our discussions here will make very little difference. Do we value our freedoms and our human rights enough to defend them in the face of a pompous academia and a corrupt governing structure? If we don’t we will surely lose them.

  • Oldhead, you may remain “unaware” if you so desire!

    Of course, Hubbard’s techniques were never reputably studied in academia, because if they had been they would have found to be workable, and then what???

    Many many people have used these techniques. I have personally met people who have benefited from them or had their lives changed.

    A certain number will sit back in their arm chairs and wait until they see “proof.” When the society falls around them in ruins, they will wish they had acted sooner, “proof” or not!

  • You have skin in this game! Well, so do the rest of us!

    That real incidents can sink totally below conscious awareness should be obvious! I hope we are not questioning this obvious fact here.

    The only question, then, is how to recover them faithfully. Such recovery WILL be therapeutic, or at least of a neutral result. Why aren’t more clamoring for the best way to do this instead of gaslighting those who have such memories? The mentioned “false” incidents are often quite real! To deny this is to deny the reality of living on Earth!

  • This is a sad chronology.

    But, to be complete, it should start earlier.
    In 1950 Hubbard wrote that all significant mental problems are caused by indents that really happened but are not available to normal waking memory. He wrote about discovering many attempted abortions by uncovering dissociated prenatal incidents and then confirming them with the mothers.
    For this work he was soundly roasted by the psychiatric “profession.”
    In fact, he was definitely onto something!

    There has never been any attempt, as far as I know, to duplicate Hubbard’s work in an academic setting. But as the article points out, many studies have been done that demonstrate the validity of the basic mechanism.

    It should be noted, however, that Hubbard found that these dissociated incidents included not just abuse, but incidents all the way down to and including times when the subject had been totally unconscious (such as a severe injury or a surgery). Such incidents can be discovered, and then recovered into conscious memory. This takes very skilled work, however.

    The “puzzle” of memory is one key area that psychology must get right before the subject will be of any great value to the general public. We know damn well that things occur to people that they absolutely cannot remember (because they were unconscious at the time)! Are we really ready to believe that such incidents will have no subsequent effect on a person? What do you think “triggers” is really all about?

  • In my book, the problem with any study that looks at the effects of an “intervention” on the brain is that it is looking in the wrong place! If you want a good indicator of how a person is feeling, just LOOK at him and ask him a few questions! Who cares exactly what the brain is doing if the person is feeling better, getting more competent, or is obviously in better control of himself?

  • I have a young friend who rather carelessly informed me recently that she had once been diagnosed as “borderline.” She knew I was a Scientologist and didn’t believe in those labels. And I ignored the communication for that reason. (I didn’t know what “borderline” meant.) But I didn’t forget it!

    Now this subject comes up in the context of “mental health awareness.”


    So I looked it up. I read part of the definition of what “borderline” is at PsychCentral then double-checked it at NIMH. While these descriptions describe this young woman quite well, what a trip to lay on a person!

    I can imagine how easy it would be to convince someone that all their reactions and emotions were because they were “borderline,” and so send them on a trajectory of endless self-doubt and basically despair. I can imagine how seriously this woman (being a former psych student) takes this information! I can only imagine how it could make her worry, wonder if she will ever “get better” and impede her from taking the risks we all have to take in life in order to stay alive and fulfill our basic obligations.

    She desperately wants to heal or “get better” without any drugs or other interventions. But if she takes this diagnosis seriously she could find herself back on meds, in endless and costly “therapy” and with her relationships with her children and with me possibly ruined (she has already suffered through a divorce).

    This gives me more reality on what these labels, especially in the absence of fast and effective ways to get rid of them, can do to ruin a life and offload all the responsibility for a person’s upset and suffering onto their own personal world, when only a fraction of that responsibility belongs there. I am glad I stayed away from all that. I am very concerned for my young friend, as she was not able to stay away from it, and she now lives in a world where almost everyone around her thinks that psychologists actually know what they are talking about.

  • Well, I hope this system works for some people.

    But I am still waiting to see a system (besides the one I am trained in) that actually sees people as immortal spiritual beings, which is, after all, the actual truth of our situation.

    RAP, WARS, “dance” are bizarre expressions for a system that is supposed to help families come to peace with each other and with themselves. On top of that, the world is not that peaceful a place, and in recent times in particular, has been at war with families, with parents and with their children. (In short, at war with all of us!) This needs to be taken into account, too, and I don’t see that here. The ENTIRE PROBLEM a family could be running into could be coming from some antagonistic (criminal) element outside the family but lurking in the workplace, the school, or even in the media. These influences on childhood “bad behavior” and parent stress should not be overlooked!

  • That’s right, Steve. This is a marketing campaign. It’s done in the context of other “awareness” campaigns that are a bit more honorable in their purpose and intent. So it takes advantage of that sheen of moral meaning. But it is clear from the careful work of many that the current “mental health” system is a scam designed to make money for certain groups and worse.

  • Yes, this is the same Peter Sterling that stood up against ECT (shock therapy) all those years ago!

    But evolution is a very faulty model. I no longer subscribe to it to any great degree. It only covers the body, for one thing, leaving Spirit entirely out of the equation.

    And what we have learned from Spirit seems to stand most ideas about evolution on their heads. Evolution has been very soundly brought into doubt on its own merits, as well. To me, it’s as old fashioned as a flat Earth.

  • Thank you so much for your story!

    Much like any “fad,” everyone who has benefited from mindfulness techniques thinks everyone should do it. They aren’t really aware of the fact that people are different and some might not be ready for it, or it might just not be the thing for them. Such practices will always be voluntary, so they will never get tested on a wide variety of different people, like drugs are supposed to be.

    Those techniques are not the only non-drug route to emotional healing. All such routes should be discussed and evaluated, not just the ones the mainstream thinks are “cool.”

  • When a “new idea” does not address corruption in the system, or even the potential for corruption, but just assumes that we need “better technology” I get suspicious. That approach fuels the fires of industry without doing anything to protect people for abuses. We are slipping into an age where the “great new technologies” of 20 or 30 or 40 years ago are now being used to enslave us. We need to address that problem first.

  • Anyone except a sociopath should agree with his point of being courteous.

    “The way we treat each other IS the therapy.”
    In most cases, this is absolutely true. Respectful, kind, caring, even loving treatment of one another is a basic of human interaction and some of the best “therapy” that anyone should be able to provide to another. Without this basic in, you can’t make it any farther with another person, if your goal is to help them.

  • A progressive take on the “problem of mental health.”

    Progressives don’t see a huge problem with psychiatry. Except that it costs too much and doesn’t have enough social justice activists in its ranks.

    Handled these problems, and the world will be a better place. Right?

  • The modern work was started by Wilder Penfield. That work is summarized in books like I’m OK You’re OK. It has been continued along one line by hypnotherapists. On a different line, Hubbard used Dianetics techniques to find such recordings around 1950 and subsequently. He later used a meter to separate “real” memories from “dub-in.” Meditators have discovered past life memories using sheer mental focus. The recordings are definitely there, and there are many ways to dig them up in addition to conscious recall.

  • Dr. Sterling returns!

    And though his criticism of our current orientation is incisive, and his recommendations for change fair minded, I am troubled by the introductory sentence indicating that what we are walking into is a “new world order.”

    And I am even more troubled by his reliance on evolutionary psychology as his theoretical basis. It is a false construct.

    While what he says and recommends may be true enough for the human animal, we humans are far more than mere animals! And NO theory based on the idea that we are just animals will open our eyes wide enough to find a positive direction forward.

    If our bodies need regular bursts of dopamine to live well, I am sure the New World Order Technocracy can figure out a way to provide that … to those who survive its vagaries.

    What of freedom? What of higher purpose? What of God or Creator or The Infinite? Are not these, too, real needs? YES! Of animals? Of course not. But that is not what we are; never were, never will be. We are beings, and that has been amply demonstrated, though not amply reported on. And we will seek the future of beings, not of animals. I really hope we do not have to sacrifice another planet to get this right. But if we do, so be it. There will be, perhaps, other chances to get it right. I don’t see the point of waiting, though. The basics of a way forward are clear enough. They are to me, anyway.

  • For many reasons beyond the sphere of “mental health” it is important to get memory right. If it does constitute something along the lines of a “library” of all experience, then that opens up a new way to learn more about our past – our history. Initial results of this are already a part of the materials I am studying, and a different form of the “data recovery” process has been used by remote viewers with very promising (surprising? – not to me) results.

    Developing reliable ways to retrieve memories with the least amount of alteration due to language and other cultural limitations is a whole other subject. But if psychology can’t agree on what memory is, then they can never find ways to use it successfully in therapy (assuming they really want to.)

    A much more perverse, if possibly more accurate, interpretation of what psychology wants to do with memory is find new and better ways to kill it, destroy it, or invalidate it so that we can’t use it to discover their past crimes.

  • Well, there we go. That’s the argument, then.

    My information is that the recording process is entirely below the conscious level, whereas to remember usually takes some amount of conscious effort. They could not possibly operate by similar processes, as various techniques can be used to recover memories of events that the being was never even consciously aware of.

  • I thought I’d read through this, as suggested by the number of comments (zero) no one else has yet. But I can see why.

    I am probably not even an appropriate person to comment on the DSM, or any suggested replacement, as I am of the conviction that the whole system should be jettisoned, and psychologists be encouraged to return to studying rats. The subject has so far been relatively useless to the human race. Maybe they can figure out how to make rats happier.

    I might mention, though, the major “dimension” I have been trained to look for in anybody: Emotional tone, or you might say, “degree of happiness.” It is possible to look at 29 different observable behaviors, plus several more that are observable in therapy, that all correlate to this single dimension.

    If the person improves in this dimension (“gets happier”) then you know you have a workable therapy (at least for that person).

    Psychology has been in its rut for a long time now. As far as I can tell they have gone seriously subterranean! If it weren’t for a few dear people in the field who have helped me, I would be inclined to totally disregard it.

  • This piece is thick with life!

    I believe many more people would write like this if they could find the words and the voice.

    My young friend who has been trying to sort through issues like this is more than ten years younger than Bojana. She knows there is something wrong, but everywhere around her there is agreement that it is she who is wrong, and everybody else is just fine. That it makes perfect sense to take a pill whenever you “feel bad.”

    The social pressure brought to bear on a person who is a bit more perceptive, a bit more sensitive, a bit more creative (a bit more alive?) can be anything from moderate to openly threatening depending on how close one is to the nearest sociopath. In the worst cases the sociopath will try to kill (or bring to death) their target and often succeeds. And so it is that I fear for my young friend, and for so many others like her in similar situations.

    I wish Bojana well, and hope she continues to learn what is most useful to living a full and happy life and manages to do so.

  • Again, you’re talking about the remembering process, not the recording process. I am confident in describing memory itself as simply a huge array of “pictures.” The “pictures” store ALL perceptics, not just sight, including emotions and thoughts.

    The remembering process, on the other hand, is very problematic and can be injured, modified, disabled, and so forth.

    Memory is a little like a huge library. Well, how do you find the book you want (or need?). That’s a whole separate process. What if someone blows up your index card system? Or you never bother to create one? Then your ability to remember accurately will suffer greatly.

  • Sure, but how did the researchers know which objects were recognized and which weren’t? By the people being studied saying so, right? So they don’t know for sure how the perception was stored. They just know that the person couldn’t give it back to them. So, are we studying memory or remembering?

  • Well, I’m no anthropologist, but this is what I have seen: First, the more indigenous or nature-attached cultures tend to make music a big part of their lives. And if I can generalize, Africa has embraced music as a public community activity much more than the West has. I know that public performances have also been a big part of life in Bali. There are probably other places that I am less aware of. There is for instance the way street samba infuses life in the favelas of Brazil, particularly in Rio. I have also heard good things about Puerto Rico. In these places. music can be heard almost everywhere at almost any time. It tends to be celebratory rather than overly introverted and almost everyone is involved with it, including may part time or “amateur” musicians that help during festival times.

  • Well, that may well be the case. But since when is someone who visits Mad In America all the time going to rely on psychological research for the definitive data on how the mind works? I don’t, and that’s for sure.

    How does a person know what he/she has experienced? One way is direct knowingness, without relying on mental recordings (memory). And the other way is through consulting one’s “records” (memories). This is similar to how a historian figures our what really happened a long time ago. But we know this way of discovering data (truth?) has problems, whether the records are in a file drawer or in a mind. The records are what they are. Do they amount to a perfect record of what happened? No. Can they be alterered? Yes. Can they be interpreted different ways by different people? Yes. But the records are what they are.

    So I think psychology has the records themselves (memory) all confused with the process of digging up and interpreting those records (remembering).

    It is in the best interests if criminals, I might point out, to invalidate the reliability of memory as much as possible, as this is quite commonly what is used (in places like courts of law) to get them into trouble. So, unfortunately, the profession as it is currently constituted has a certain vested interest in research findings that show memory to be unreliable. I don’t believe memory is that unreliable. Remembering is another story.

  • Now you are talking about communication, not memory. And I think what this study was really about was how people communicate what they remember. Sure that goes through cultural filters. But we know that communicating involves cultural filters. We see that in how people from different cultures describe their NDEs. That just means language is an imperfect method for describing a memory. It doesn’t mean that the actual contents of the memory depend on the culture the person was a part of when he/she acquired the memory.

  • I didn’t say culture was irrelevant. I said is not key. Spirit is key. Why does an old white man love African rhythms so much? Because he’s a spiritual being! I’ve never been anywhere near Africa this lifetime. That’s not “my culture.” But I love it as if it were. Why? Spirit.

  • Another cutting piece of writing by Megan! Her words tend to make me very emotional. Her generation will shape our future, and so few of them have any certainty yet about what direction to go in.

    She recognizes how much of the messaging we are getting amounts to PR and marketing. Manipulative tools of the large corporate interests. The problem I see is that there is almost NO messaging out there right now that is not of this type. In other words, I find the “progressive” messages meant for the young just as disingenuous as the ones that seem to be promoting “the system” being maintained by their parents or grandparents.

    At this point, all really viable alternative viewpoints, or messages, are almost completely suppressed. Many people who decry the “medical model” still think the brain must have a lot to do with mental and emotional functioning!

    So, what I see is that “the system” has provided us with an entire game, complete with opposing views that seem very contentious but that always leads us back inevitably to … the same system. Megan recognizes that we seem to be confronted with a choice between changing (“reforming”) the existing system and creating a new system. She sees that the need for a brand new approach to almost every aspect of life is required, yet most of us are too embedded in the current system to think in those terms.

    I have my own vision of how things could play out.

    It starts with the realization that we have all participated in creating the current system, that it is an insane system, and that we therefore all must have some degree of a sanity problem, need to take responsibility for that, and stop shopping around for an Oppressor that we can blame for everything that goes wrong.

    Next, a relatively small group of people who realize the above will get together and learn what needs to be done and what has to be done to create a new system, and will quietly go about creating one. The system, when it notices this, will dismiss this work or its people as having its own characteristics – dishonest and criminal. Therefore, recruiting new members into this smaller group will be very difficult to do.

    But, assuming they can get enough people and keep their show on the road, their creations will begin to become more noticeable. Probably at first this will be most apparent as attempts to “clean up” the system, or for calls to restore basic rights and freedoms. Revelations of long-standing systemic wrongdoing may occur. And it will start to become more obvious that this group has a “leg up” for some reason. Popular support will begin to shift to the point that it cannot be hidden by false or wild stories.

    I don’t expect the clamor that can be created by the real crazy people will ever go away. But the rest of us will get better and better at ignoring it, like a few of us do now. Eventually “the system” will become a sideshow, to be amused by or pitied. And it will lose its political power.

    I think it is important to realize that a lot of this madness traces back to the compulsive need for political power. As more people turn sane and learn how to use power properly, Earth could become a formidable force for good in the universe. It actually has that potential.

  • Annie was in the singing group Lambert Hendricks and Ross. She died last summer at the age of 90.
    I always knew “Twisted” as Joni’s song, but it is indeed Annie’s, and many singers have performed it. I always thought it was a delightful little “FU” jab at the whole middle class idea of what is supposed to be “normal.”

    I wonder now how many girls I knew (when I was a boy) had to deal with the sort of emotional torrents that Miranda describes from when she was a teenager! I know one young woman (now a young mom) who still experiences this sort of thing a lot (she is embarrassed by it, I think, and likes to be alone when in the middle of it). But since roughly the 6 month mark of the lockdown in California, there is seldom a day goes by that I don’t cry pretty hard at least once that day.

    Psychiatry (if it were a single being) would be sitting there grinning and rubbing its hands together, I imagine. A new flock of potential victims – I mean patients! – for our operation to chew up and spit out.

    I like to listen to music from places where it is used as their primary route to health. Most of those places trace their musical roots to Africa.

  • Are we really speaking of memory here, or of our interpretations of experience? Memory can be accessed and recovered with a high degree of accuracy, but the ordinary person, when simply asked to recall something they experienced, will ordinarily do this quite sloppily.

    Sloppy stories of past experience are not always therapeutically useful, which is one reason most talk therapies underperform. There are various ways around that problem.

  • Alright, then you are being simply… ???. Just because we are spiritual beings does not mean we can ignore language and the various other mechanisms we use to relate to each other. Sure you can communicate using just telepathy, if you are good, but that is not where most of us are at. Language remains workable, particularly when we include the use of it for expressions of spiritual understanding. I am not aware of any culture that does not have such concepts in its language.

  • That’s the problem with “woke.” There may be a version of it that is authentically sincere. But a lot of people are trying to ride it like a bandwagon, and they have no real sense of how conflicted they sound when they push cultural sensitivity while ignoring the oppressive nature of the medical model (DSM).

  • I agree. The new movement is going to have to look a lot different. Their takeover, you might say, has been executed with a degree of sophistication (and finance) that we have not matched. We can at least become more sophisticated. It will not be easy now. Some of my closest friends and loved ones think psych drugs are totally fine and the way to go. Now we are in a hole that must somehow be climbed out of.

  • Lord! Yet another researcher promoting wokeness!

    This “different” viewpoint might be worthwhile if it really led to any revelations about memory that were useful.

    Memories influenced by culture? Do you think? That’s probably why some people become multilingual more easily – they spoke those different languages in earlier lifetimes. Oops! Not sure the R word is allowed in woke culture!

    I know one person who wrote down almost everything she could remember about her past in a book. I know many more people who have many ancient memories but who aren’t really writers, so they just tell their friends about their memories. But this woman (Dena Merriam) who wrote up all she could remember has been a Norman, an Indian, a Persian, a Japanese, an African, a Russian and an American. So, what “culture” does this woman actually belong to? The only answer is “human culture!” And that does not even include all of her memories, because she also remembers living between lives in a place of Light. So she is part of a non-human culture as well!

    Can we get over Woke and realize that we are spiritual beings? I’m not going to stop writing about this until I either die or get drowned out by others who finally begin to realize that this has something to do with them and their possible futures.

  • I am concerned that this new “study” might basically be just a hit piece.

    However, I don’t think meditation techniques should be mixed up with the field of “mental health” as it currently exists.

    This is possibly, though, a case of meditation teachers seeking a share of the “mental health market” and traditional therapists complaining about it. I don’t think meditation can be practiced non-voluntarily, as mentioned above. So that gives us a different “intervention model” (or whatever they want to call it).

    From a science point of view then, you might be comparing apples to oranges rather than different kinds of apples.

  • I have my own way of expressing the value of music in human experience. It actually goes for any activity that involves “mere entertainment value.” This, oddly, includes many many activities currently considered “non essential:” social gatherings, church, concerts, shows, sporting events, movies…

    My understanding is based on this quote from our Creed: “…the spirit alone may save or heal the body.”

    Spirit, then, is the only true healing agent in life, according to what I have been taught. All other healing modalities ultimately operate through Spirit.

    So my way of understanding this is that all these “non-essential activities” including playing, listening to and dancing to music, have healing power because they validate Spirit. Any activity that validates Spirit should have some healing benefit. This would even include the milder forms of education (or study).

    Activities that validate Spirit “waste” time and money, provide no nutritional or medicinal value, usually involve no physical product at all, but only temporal experience, and often can be indulged in with minimal technological assistance.

    Conversely, activities which invalidate Spirit tend to treat us only as animals or bodies, focus their attention on the brain and chemicals, are seen as “economically essential,” and when put into action tend to enslave and depress.

    I believe this understanding, or model, explains all the experimental observations laboriously described above and points the way to improvements in theory and practice in all the healing arts, as well as the other humanities, and ultimately the physical sciences as well.

    I appreciate this opportunity to comment on this topic. I really hope that in a few short years we will laugh at the premise of this article (why is music so good for us?) and wonder why we didn’t realize the most obvious answer much sooner.

  • If we use a perhaps somewhat limited definition of “politics” as “an attempt to get someone to do something that they didn’t themselves think of doing or might actually prefer not to do,” then we do see that emotions, even using your interpretation, may involve politics.

    One who is honestly experiencing an emotion has little attention on the political aspects of his emotional behavior. But the people on the receiving end of that behavior may see it differently! A crying fit or a tantrum at the wrong time can seem highly manipulative to the person who has to “keep it together” and deal with it. And so with anger, fear, apathy, even enthusiasm. They can all be seen as manipulative in some way, and may even be used that way on purpose.

    But when it’s an honest reaction to a real situation, the first thought of the therapist should be to find out what’s going on, or if it’s obvious, to just let the person get through it. “Give them some space” as the saying goes.

  • I will always see the main problem as their lack of a workable understanding of human experience. This then is often reinforced by not wanting to know, and the preference for using drugs as an “easy fix.”

    As MDs, psychiatrists do about what other doctors do, although they violate their Hippocratic Oath much more thoroughly.

    As healers psychiatrists are a total joke. And that’s what bothers me the most. The name of their profession means “psychic healer” basically. They should be true to that name, or get out!

    The data is out there! Even a psych could probably learn how to deliver a Locational! If they don’t really want to heal souls, what the heck are they doing? Their excuses for their incompetence are all false, from my point of view. They could be honest and effective if they really wanted to be. Most of them really don’t want to be.

  • Perhaps the author will answer.
    I don’t think his language here is very exact.
    If someone says, “I hate being locked down!” that’s politics in emotional expression.
    If the therapist says, “OK, let’s deal with that hatred,” that is psychotherapy ignoring the politics of the situation, which is in fact the dominant suppressor.
    If the therapist says, “OK, let’s see what we can do to got out from under this suppression,” that’s psychotherapy embracing the politics of the situation.

    We see here that the subject is limited in how it expresses itself by its own knowledge limitations!

    “Suppression” or “oppression” are considered by most psychologists to be “political” phenomena. But they are in fact at the core of what triggers misemotion in many people. Psychology thus ignores the central role of the sociopath and his allies in the psychological – not just political – life of people. They thus ignore their own role in this – to the extent that their profession includes some sociopaths, if it is not in fact dominated by them.

  • This therapist should study what I have studied. It’s really not that difficult.

    When you realize that spiritual memory stretches back for billions of years, and that we have all been through times like this before (often not ending well, by the way – a contributor to the current sense of dread) you begin to see the way forward more clearly.

    Mental states and emotions are intimately tied to real interactions between people – most of them in the past. And real interactions between people always involve politics.

    Just as the struggle between our desire for freedom and for the sense of “security” that comes from being dependent manifests itself in politics, so does it in our personal worlds. The discovery of a true psychology results in many unexpected benefits. Better ways to study, better ways to help others, better ways to organize, better ways to stay productive, better ways to govern, better ways to control crime. True psychology is at the core of all human thought and action. We should expect great things from it that would apply to every aspect of life. And that is what a true psychology offers, but not the psychology we have now. Nor, of course, its psychotherapies.

    This therapist is wise to dream; she is unwise to confine herself to the current academic habits. They have led us nowhere. It is time we strayed further from the nest!

  • Wow.
    You needn’t try so hard, though, to save face for the doctors. They should know better.

    Has anyone ever, for example, tried giving you a Locational?

    Indeed, it has done the insane no good to consider insanity an illness. And it has not done all the others who couldn’t even be considered insane any good, either.

    There is a lot known about sleep. Insomnia is not the easiest thing to treat (at least not in my experience) but pills certainly aren’t the answer there, either.

    My teacher tells a funny story about how a doctor observed someone he was helping get overheated in the course of therapy. The doctor wanted to stop the therapy and treat the person for fever! So, yes, they can definitely over-react.

  • I am glad there are a few people still capable of reporting on such research without resorting to satire! I know I couldn’t!

    For some reason I get this image of someone chasing a horse to rescue the rider when the rider, long ago, already fell off.

    If they can’t treat distressing episodes successfully, why should we expect them to be able to prevent them? It goes without saying that “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” But when you don’t have a clue, then it won’t matter how much “prevention” or “cure” you pile up, the problem will never go away.

    I wish these learned people would stop acting so helpless and start pushing the envelope a little harder. Better answers exist in this world. Who cares if you lose your job advocating for them? You’re probably better off without a job like that.

  • It’s so funny for me to see this invective couched in terms of Critical Theory and Social Justice, two of the grand intellectual constructs of the last century, created, tailor made, for a new generation of upset youth, by psychologists who should have known better.

    And so this young “queer” person concludes that it is the “system” that is broken, not people! Well, who do you think creates, builds and maintains systems? People! And so if the “system” is not preforming as advertised, the people operating it probably are broken. The people they try to help? Who knows?

    There have been several calls from several observers that we need to de-expert the whole activity of friendship and emotional care. I agree. The current approach is so not working!

    I made it clear on Facebook where I stand on this – what I think the most obvious answer staring us in the face is. But I promised to go light on that at this website.

    But: What if a person could walk into a school, throw down not that much cash, and take a little course that would teach them a social skill, or a way to help others, or something that would help them patch their own life together better? And what if a whole bunch of people took such courses and got more hip to the whole scene and started helping each other dig out of the silly emotional holes that we so often fall into? Would we still need all those white upper middle class female therapists that Devon complains about? (Hey, I had one, too, for a while!) Probably not. And for most of us, it would be good riddance!

    I have seen some stories of some therapists doing some amazing things for some really upset people. And I have heard many more stories of people trained outside the realm of psychology and psychiatry helping others in many amazing ways. So there is an activity that some call “therapy” that is potentially useful. Not, however, in the hands of most people who call themselves “therapists.”

  • First important observation: Grief is occasioned by loss.
    Second important observation: A grief response is triggered. (That means the greater loss is prior.)
    Third important observation: The analytical analog to grief is injustice. Injustice is a powerful motivating idea in the universe! One who feels unjustly treated can be transformed from a happy group member to a destructive rioter.

    After these points are made, her discussion diverges from what I think is most useful.

    Here is what I know that might contribute to this discussion:
    Grief events tend to pile up on a case. The average person brings a lot of stored grief into this lifetime from the past. Incidents of profound loss can be traced all the way back to the “initial separation.”
    Handling stored grief can make a huge difference to a person, as in practical terms it acts as a suppressor on the person’s entire life.
    The various technical ways to do this add up to locating past moments of profound loss and “crying them out” (for lack of a more concise description). More recent incidents tend to mask earlier ones, so it is necessary to work backwards for the most recent loss.
    Another approach to handling grief is to attempt to remove (distract attention away from?) the triggering condition. If that condition is chronic, then the individual will be constantly pushed back into grief as he/she goes about living. Removing such chronic “restimulators” can do wonders for a person. The lowest gradient is to have the person just go outside and walk around and look at things.

    Given the above comments, I will relate my recent personal experience.

    Growing up, I would run into grief every now and then. It would come and go as losses hit me. It seldom hung around for long. I would get busy again, and my attention would come off of it. There were a few times that it hit harder than usual and I would cry for an hour or more.

    When the closures hit, my life suddenly changed from busy to very slow. My regular in-person social contacts went from many to none. At first it was just annoying. But as things dragged on, it started to affect me much more. There was a particular new friend I had grown fond of that I began to miss. My only contact with her was through her work, and she had lost her job. I almost panicked as I tried to reestablish communication with her. I finally did, but my grief was now in full restimulation and I was crying a lot every single day.

    Even though I restored contact with this new friend, it was not enough to turn off the grief. It continues to the present, as I struggle to combat the loneliness of a lockdown that separates me from what was my primary source of human contact. I have written extensively about this on my blog. But writing doesn’t help that much. Going out for a walk is only temporary relief. Going out on a major shopping trip works better, but I can’t afford to do that every day. And it doesn’t solve the isolation. I have resorted to getting onto dating websites – which I have never used before! – just in the hopes that I can find someone to visit with on a regular basis.

    The lockdowns, along with unhandled past incidents of great loss, have pushed me in the direction of becoming an emotional cripple, compared to how I operated before. It has been an instructive experience! But not one I would wish on others, even my enemies. I imagine millions are having similar experiences right at this moment. This is not good for me, for them, or for this world. Grief is a crippling emotion. To get stuck in it is not good for a person.

    I would NEVER take a drug for this condition, but I can understand why someone would be tempted to. Getting stuck in grief is the opposite of fun!

  • Okay, I’ll give a couple of examples. We’ll see if there is any mileage left in pursuing this:
    If you are a tolerant (liberal) sort of person, you’re likely to see it as “common sense” that people should be trusted and if someone is having problems with that there is some stressor in their environment that is probably to blame.
    If you are a little more cautious in your approach to other people, you’ll think it’s “common sense” to check people out before you trust them, because some people just aren’t trustworthy.

    However, this all started with rebel playing around with the phrase “common sense” to suggest a sort of lowest common denominator agreement that “everybody knows” and yet could be totally false. Rebel also argues that “Psychology can’t be science, because nothing is science.” And Truth thought that made “no sense.”

    So we’re just playing around with the meanings of words here. If you keep your feet on the ground you realize that there are processes that people use for obtaining knowledge that they call “science.” But in the case of psychology, this process seems to have totally missed its mark.

    Meanwhile, rebel reminds us that there is some amount of art in everything, which is something that science tends to ignore. (The early scientists, however, tended to believe that their work was helping to reveal the beauty in God’s creation.) You can’t “measure” art, can you? But we are certainly affected or influenced by art. So there seems to be a quality of life that science is simply incapable of embracing. In some ways, that might be true.

    But…I don’t think these shortcomings point to any inherent limitations of science. I think they point to some very baked-in limitations of scientists (us). If we can find ways to “unlimit” ourselves more, we should be more capable of using science to work with subjects like art, beauty and Spirit in ways that are helpful to our fellow humans.

  • And I am asserting that various people using scientific methods ARE understanding human beings and their experiences. The only reason most people still think “we don’t know yet” is because the good research is not being covered by the mainstream. In other words, the mainstream demonstrates a definite impulse to remain ignorant.

  • It is a logical fallacy to assume that just because the mainstream rails against someone, that they must be the opposite. But it IS a distinct possibility! That is how the criminal mind works, and it is criminal minds that are feeding the mainstream many of its stories.

    At this point I would look very carefully at anything hated or ridiculed by the mainstream. There is a good chance it involves something truly valuable to human life.

  • Actually, the new definition of “conspiracy theory” is “any idea that must be wrong because it violates my sense of security too much.”

    In modern usage, there is the thinly veiled implication that the holder of any such theory is a tad paranoid.

    I believe this writer is using it in that way.

    Literally, of course, a conspiracy theory is any theory about the existence of a conspiracy (secret criminal group) that accounts for certain (usually criminal) events. The “original conspiracy theory” is that the JFK assassination was an inside job, which is more or less a proven fact at this point.

    Today it is a term used to gaslight people and for ad hominem attacks. Many “conspiracy theories” are in fact quite accurate and well-documented. Others, of course, are not.

  • Wow, what a lot of mixed messages from my point of view!

    I have never seen the expression “conspiracy theory” used so many times in one piece of writing.

    And I thought the idea that psychiatry was being insincere about its intentions and is being subsumed by Big Pharma was a conspiracy theory!

    I must admit that I am partial to many “theories” finding that various events that turned out bad probably had conspirators behind them. Seems like the more rational and realistic attitude to me.

    Yes, you can get gain on most cases by treating them as victims. Most people benefit from a little understanding and TLC. But that doesn’t exactly solve the problem of the human condition. For the fact is that each being does play a part in his own victimization. It’s not something you go in and beat people over the head about, but sooner or later the causative side of a person’s life needs to be addressed.

    I’m glad this guy knows that the psychiatric story is BS. But that’s just the first step to doing something about it. Let’s continue to understand without the conceptual burden of worrying about conspiracies. They exist! Let’s move on.

  • Well, one exists, so I think it’s realistic, that’s all. Of course the technology is not for controlling human behavior. We already have something that does that – ourselves. But there are workable technologies for helping others become happier, which it seems to me should be the goal of the “mental health” system.

  • Wow! Yet another example of history rewritten or ignored.

    I was invovled in a demonstration held in the Berkeley City Council chambers somewhere around 1979 where I believe a petition was delivered to the council urging them to ban shock treatment in Berkeley. We arrived during a hearing at which a psychiatrist was attempting (rather unsuccessfully) to explain why shock treatment was so necessary. I have no idea who organized that event! I know that Berkeley was one of the few cities to ever enact an ECT ban.

    This was an active, boots-on-the-ground movement back then. I don’t see many activities like that these days (although CCHR does make sure to show up at every major psych convention, and I know that some other groups do this, too).

    But these days most in the mood to protest are spending their street time on other issues. I do hope the focus comes back around to this issue. It is a very central one.

  • Yes, I’m not sure how rebel meant that. But perhaps it has to do with how psychiatry likes to just leave people on their meds for the rest of their lives. Yes, doctors are discovering more diseases that seem to require that. But do they really?

    I know a guy who discovered a lot of cures. He became somewhat rich and famous, but the mainstream treats him very poorly. He wasn’t a doctor! How dare he cure anything?

    This is where all the power structures seem to be right now. Just trying to maintain, to protect or expand their income flows. The enthusiasm for cures is gone, despite any public displays to the contrary. If we don’t find a way to kick the whole system in the butt, it’s going to atrophy totally.

  • If we understood people as well as we do electronics, it should be possible. That’s what my group strives for. 100% good results. If you have a workable technology it should be possible. The problem with psychology is that it doesn’t understand people well enough to develop broadly workable technologies for helping them.

  • This is the classic liberty-based argument for decriminalizing certain “victimless” behaviors.

    Posed as a personal rights issue, decriminalization garners support from liberal-leaning people.

    The argument against such changes usually focuses on how they are perceived as normalizing these behaviors, even though they are known to pose significant risks to “misbehavers” and the people around them.

    This conflict of ideas creates a major quandary to people like myself who recognize the harms committed by our law enforcement system but do not wish to see the mass normalization of dangerous behaviors. Where does such a trend end? Long ago, premarital sex was normalized. Now we have normalized the use of harmful psychiatric drugs, as well as marijuana. What dangerous behavior will be next? Vandalism? Robbery?

    Furthermore, I don’t want to see drug use in particular normalized, and this is definitely the goal of the drug companies, at least regarding “mental health” drugs. I believe the drug company overlords would welcome an increase of all drugs, and would take advantage of the opportunity to market more drugs to the population for “recreational” purposes.

    Calls for decriminalization and leniency seem insincere to me when they focus on turning those committing unwanted behaviors into victims and those wishing to improve behavior into oppressors.

    What I believe is closer to the truth is that populations have been convinced that the only way to guard against misbehavior in their communities is by use of a punishment-based system involving laws, law enforcers, a judicial system, and various forms of punishment. This system has proven to be ineffective. It is in fact based on a criminal control paradigm. But this doesn’t change the fact that a majority of people in a majority of communities want to reduce unwanted behaviors, not increase them. And normalization of such behaviors, particularly when accompanied by Corporate marketing campaigns aimed at encouraging such behaviors, tends to result in an increase in the unwanted behaviors.

    Cigarette smoking is a classic case of society rising up to de-normalize an unwanted behavior. Through a strident marketing campaign, the message got through, and smoking has lessened, though it did not end by any means.

    Conversely, normalizing behaviors that were unwanted signals that those behaviors are no longer unwanted. A consumer market is created, which Corporate then promotes to, usually leading to increases in those behaviors. This has happened with premarital sex, psych drugs, and more recently with marijuana.

    What society needs, then, is a more effective system of controlling unwanted (destructive) behaviors that empowers individuals to make better life decisions rather than delivering up to Corporate new audiences to be marketed to and controlled. This is the societal struggle we see playing out all around us right now. Do we really want Corporate to save us all with more legalized but very dangerous drugs? Or do we want to find structures that will actually help us build saner communities?

  • I know. Sometimes I shudder to think that my experience might have been unusual. What do most children go through? Also, that was the 1960s. We didn’t really even have that much TV back then. The “entertainment” industry has been misinforming people and separating them. This is an effect I experienced more later in life. And now it is almost unbearable! But I got some repair work done along the way. And it wasn’t by way of psychology. If I hadn’t received that help, I don’t know if I’d even be functional today, living almost totally alone as I do.

  • That’s really good! And you aren’t alone by any means. But your story is not yet in the majority. Psychology still lets most people down.

    I work in electronics. And as an example, I have worked with thousands of little parts that light up when you run electricity through them. Almost every single one of these parts worked correctly. We know how to make these things. We can do it with nearly 100% certainty. Why can’t we make happy people with that same certainty? It should be possible.

  • Oh you could be right about that. I am not that familiar with the fine distinctions of how academic subjects are categorized.

    I’m not too concerned about the posing that goes on in academia. I am more concerned with whether or not their findings are useful to anyone.

    We have electronics and better car engines because of the physical sciences. And psychology can only give us Cognitive Behavior Therapy? For psychologists to resort to trying to reason with people to change their behaviors looks a lot to me like giving up.

    I think all they have to do is start taking their Parapsychology colleagues more seriously, and I think they could have a breakthrough. My concern is that the last thing they really want is a breakthrough! To a lot of people, Man looks better as a mystery. Solving Man is like opening Pandora’s box. It’s scary.

  • Yes, Psychology is one of the Humanities. I don’t view it as a bad thing. Did I say I did? But it is under pressure to be “more scientific,” as are economics, sociology, etc.
    And for good reason: The Sciences have produced workable technologies, while the Humanities have not. However, for the Humanities to produce workable technologies, they need to get “human” right, which the Sciences didn’t need to do.
    So…what’s your point? Did I lose you somewhere in the above discussion?

  • Well, I’ll tell you what I know about. Of course, it’s just a backup observation, but it is required. Subjective knowledge has to count for something, too.

    After every time we “help” someone, we have them sit down and attach themselves to a meter. And if the meter gives a certain reaction (and the guy is smiling and looks OK), we know it’s all good. And if it doesn’t we know it wasn’t all good (even if he’s trying to pretend it was). And there’s your objective observation. Anyone who can read the meter can make the observation. It’s a much finer line when dealing with people. But a degree of objectivity should still be possible.

  • Wow. It is interesting to get this viewpoint!

    I had a good round of making friends when I was a pre-teen. It was a VERY natural, easy experience. If you fought too much, you didn’t stay friends. If you adored each other you fell in love, or at least played a lot together. Then I moved from California to Michigan. I couldn’t stand the social scene for kids in Michigan! It was so limited for friendships between the sexes. Same sex friends came and went – no big deal.

    But young adulthood for me was super weird because I hadn’t bothered to “grow up” in high school the way kids are expected to. When you are an adult and you don’t choose the socially accepted avenues for meeting people and so on, it can get pretty lonely pretty fast. On top of that, I moved back to California. That’s when I got some counseling. What my therapist told me didn’t require a PhD in psychology! But why weren’t my own parents more there for me? It’s a whole dynamic of forces that is disempowering people in many ways. And psychiatry (I learned later) is at the center of it.

    I am amazed that Psychology turns out any good people, but it does. Too bad they are so poorly trained. But If I were a professional in that field (as it is, I am a semi-professional) I would spend all my effort getting ordinary people trained in the basics of life and how to interact with people. Since my parents were teenagers, the has been the biggest training need, and the biggest lack. Some cultures and sub-cultures do better with it than others. The academic sub-culture is absolutely terrible at it, and that is in part due to the influence of psychiatric-oriented psychology. It serves the practitioners more than it does the people.

    “Late-stage capitalism” is a typical modern term. It is a terrible misuse of the language! Psychology is fine with people using words however they want to, without looking them up to find out what they really mean. What I am seeing currently is an attempt my Corporate that has been going on my whole lifetime (66 years) to take over the planet, at which they have almost succeeded. If we let them succeed, then that’s game over for freedom and human rights on this planet. I think we have to confront the extent to which psychology (psychiatry of course) has been put there to serve Corporate. If Corporate weren’t here trying to turn the planet into some sort of giant factory, psychology and many other subjects would be in a very different state than they are today. I would like to get rid of Corporate, but that will be VERY difficult. Capitalism, to me, is fine. That’s part of a free economy. Corporate is something else. At it’s worse, it means total control. On this planet currently it means devious control and lots of immoral perks for people who cooperate. Very dystopian.

  • I consider this approach a fatal error on the part of those seeking reform!

    They know there is something wrong. But what they propose, basically, is to turn the tables on their supposed suppressors, and criminalize and suppress them! That won’t work. This uses a brush much to broad and indiscriminate.

    What the social justice warriors miss is that they have been duped into believing the same basic materialistic lies that the “colonizers” forwarded in the recent past. They are, for all intents and purposes, products of the oppressor. Nothing good will come of this.

  • Well done on getting off those drugs, Karin!

    I too live alone and I have no psych diagnoses (unless you count the one I got 40 years ago – depression). I was never on any of those drugs and I have shunned the world of drugs since I was 25.

    But the isolation hit me VERY HARD. I think part of it was that it felt so unjust! The lock downs also deprived me of a personal contact I used to enjoy every week. Then on top of that she somehow lost her job. That’s still a mystery.

    I have struggled very hard to connect to people who seem like they would make good friends, but I have found very few so far. Friendship, it seems, is becoming a lost skill (the topic of another blog post).

    As far as psychiatry goes, this has been its operating basis for decades now, has in not?
    1) Cook up a list of “illnesses” you can accuse (diagnose?) people of having.
    2) Use those illnesses as a pretext to deny personal liberties, then give them “medicines” that actually harm them.
    3) Kill them, or let them back into the world as broken shells of their former selves.

    In the aftermath of the actual pandemic, it seems like this is what “public health” people, with the strong support of many politicians and business people, are trying to do. That’s how I am experiencing this thing now. These people have learned from psychiatry! Or do both realms share a common teacher?

    In addition, the emotional anguish and economic devastation that isolation has put us through, because of the lock downs, is unsustainable. And it seems someone wants it that way. Just like they want the unsustainable practices of psychiatry to continue forever. I had no idea such an insanity could sweep over a population as completely as this one has.

  • John, I don’t understand your reasoning. Working is the traditional way to make money. What the findings say is that having money is more therapeutic than the “therapy” you would spend that money on.

    So, while “get a job to stay mentally fit” might be a bit over-simplified, prosaic, and misapplied by bureaucrats, it is a lot closer to the truth than “get therapy to stay mentally fit!”

  • I don’t agree with this, but would argue that most “scientists” are no longer practicing good science, and have been persuaded away from it by dogmatic pressures coupled with funding.

    Scientific method should be capable of discovering Spirit if it is there (and it is). It has limited itself for irrational reasons. If rationality returned to science, Spirit would become a part of science. It is in most other civilizations (but of course, that finding is currently considered “pseudoscience” as well).

    I don’t think we need to throw the baby out with the bath water. We just need to find our way to higher level of rationality.

  • I have run into this subject only marginally in my own life, but seen or read some stories about it.

    One set of stories concerned a series of past lives. Most of these lifetimes were ended by the person deciding that they were at a good place to end their life, then getting sick and dying.

    I have also seen at least one person who experienced an OBE talk about despair and suicidal thoughts.

    For the being in the middle of the experience, I think the depth of the mental (and often physical) pain is very hard to describe, along with the despair that results, and the wish to leave.

    We should also recognize that there are beings in our midst who would like nothing better than for us to decide to kill ourselves. It would solve a problem (your aliveness) for them. You can often curb suicidal desires simply by finding who is tormenting the upset person and breaking the connection. Some of these tormentors are extremely skilled at getting others to fall into despair or hopelessness. This is often the principle danger such people pose to a sane society. We need to learn to spot and handle such people. It is really very important.

  • Psychology should basically be one of the humanities, but like all of the humanities, has had pressure brought to bear on it to be something else.

    One such pressure has been from ruling groups who don’t really want to understand people in order to help them, but are simply interested in technologies they can use to change, or control, men’s minds (and women’s and children’s too).

    Another pressure has been from psychiatry which wants psychology to support its perverted view of life and “help.”

    Thus psychology accepted a model of human experience from the natural sciences (neurology and biology) that is incorrect. And they are under constant pressure (as above) to keep this model, even though many of them realize it is wrong. This even affects those few psychologists who study parapsychology, who would like their findings to align with the more “scientific” theories of the mainstream, though they never will because the mainstream is so stubbornly wrong.

    This is terribly frustrating for me, because psychology lies at the center of human thought (as it studies human thought). If psychology gets it wrong, then all the other sciences and humanities get it wrong, too. And so we see today an entire planet desperately wanting to “grow up” but held back by the lack of a workable model. I had to resort to religion to find one. And academia doesn’t want to do that. They pride themselves (nowadays) on being secular. Well, the truth doesn’t care who believes it! Various religions are using more workable models with varying degrees of success. Many of the physical sciences can avoid it and get by, because they only address our desire to master the physical universe, not ourselves.

    But all those studies where Man stands at the center, in particular politics, economics, and medicine are suffering today – and we are all suffering – because psychology is pushing a faulty model. Many who comment here don’t even know what a more workable model is, even though they are damn well sure the current one is wrong! It’s a shame, because a more workable model exists. I hope we will see more discussion of it as our situation becomes clearer.

  • This is interesting academically because other studies have indicated that there are some mental conditions people seem to be born with. The conclusion was that those conditions must have a genetic component.

    This is a false conclusion because genes are not the only way a person can be born with something! Ian Stevenson’s work on strange birth marks makes this very clear. Some of his past life research subjects had odd birth marks. He found, where he was able to find documentation, that these marks corresponded to wounds inflicted on the previous body which led to its death.

    This is only one of many ways that a being can be born with something because of past life experiences. The sooner we can get used to the fact that this is really the way life works, the better off everyone will be!

  • Yes, people still talk about Maslow. Psychologists who are still interested in therapies that work use his ideas, I am sure. But the medical portion of the mental health system only looks at the “basic” needs, and ignores the rest. In fact, society in general is getting pretty good at that. Maslow’s hierarchy is great, but no one ever got the community to really believe in it or apply it. Maslow’s thinking, however, wasn’t totally correct. I have known of beings who concentrated on the highest need while neglecting the lower ones. They are sometimes known as “saints.” But I think we could safely say that to the extent that ALL the needs are being actively worked on, the person will feel the most alive. Cut off the higher needs and a being will feel spiritually dead.

  • Paula, I know I operate from a significantly different paradigm, but I am informed by considerable group experience. The sociopath is quite good and convincing himself that he is “helping” even as he goes about systematically ruining someone else’s life, or convincing some “colleague” that they should. These personalities are a real piece of work, and VERY dangerous people to be around. I have a hard time convincing others of this, but it’s the truth.

    The diagnosis step is a valid step in the resolution of any problem. I used it all the time in my electronics repair work. If the diagnosis is based on a real understanding of the situation, and it is given with the intention to actually resolve the situation, and the technology exists to resolve that situation, then diagnosis is needful and useful.

    I’m saying that it doesn’t work in mental health because the thought leaders in mental health are criminals. That might be an unpalatable message to some, but if the thought leaders in mental health were good people, then mental health patients wouldn’t get sick and die, or never see their condition resolve. If you don’t address intent, you will never get there! I’m not talking about the average practitioner who really doesn’t know his subject that well, but prefers to follow “best practices.” I am talking about the people who decide what the “best practices” are going to be. To the extent that those practices hinge on assigning people labels from the DSM, then yes, diagnosis becomes a huge problem. But if the field were sane, I don’t think it would be.

  • You call your list successes?

    They probably all could have been achieved, maybe even easier and with better social results, with a less materialistic approach. Denying the validity of strict positivism does not deny the validity of physical experience or the role it plays in problem solving.

    Note also, all your listed successes were engineering successes and not really theory or cognitive successes. It’s OK for engineers to be positive; they’re just engineers. We expect more from people who call themselves scientists.

  • I would like to see Iva’s thinking on this simplify a bit.

    Though I have never seen the term “positivism” used this way, for me it is not much different than saying “materialism” or some other way of describing the “modern” approach to scientific knowledge, and to knowledge and cultural norms in general.

    Though this approach has provided “air cover” you might say for modern psychology (and psychiatry), it hits these fields especially hard because it leads to (or justifies) totally unworkable solutions to the problem these two subjects study.

    You can totally objectify a person or an animal for the purpose of medicine or husbandry and still get somewhere. But not a human for the purpose of therapy. Just don’t work!

    This has led the critics of traditional psychologies off into the realm of “context.” While this has some relevance to the problem, it ignores more basic and underlying assumptions that are not only unworkable but really wrong.

    That the mind and personality reside in the brain, for instance, is totally incorrect. There is observable evidence that disproves this. So, no matter how much you work with “context” and “power relationships” and so forth, if you get that basic wrong, it won’t make that big a difference. You’ll still come up with unworkable answers.

    What Critical Theory exposes in these subjects in particular, as well as many others, are their fundamental insincerity and lack of humanity. It was fun finding out about nuclear fission, but did we really need to blow up two Japanese cities in the process? But Critical Theory makes no inroads on basic problems of workability. So I find it also a bit insincere. It is after all, an academic subject.

    When I look out on this world, and especially at the level of the academy and policy making, I see a world in desperate need of plain and simple thinking. The workable answers really aren’t that hard to find, if you sincerely want to find them. Do we?

  • I wanted to leave a supportive comment for this article.
    My first attempt was too emotional.

    I recently entered into a “friendship” with a Millennial who had been a patient in the mental health system when she was younger and has continued to work closely with it even though she disliked many aspects of her own experiences with it. She sees no alternative to understanding one’s inner life other than that offered by psychology. I offered her an alternative, but she has not been persuaded to take me up on my offer.

    Her ideas and experiences of “friendship” have definitely been shaped by the “expertization” of ordinary human life. You can find authoritative articles on the internet about anything from the best ways to brew coffee to the best ways to make love. She would show me the online advice she used in her job as a social worker, and would give me recipes for “healthy desserts” and urge me to try them out and see if I liked them. Her idea of a friend was someone you could chat with all night on your phone using text messages, perhaps while doing this with several others at the same time, from the safety of your bed. I had real conversations with her, but these seemed stressful to her, even though she would put up a good show of enjoying them (only because I did?). She had, it seemed to me, almost lost the skill to look another being in the face and give them a piece of her mind, or let them give her a piece of their mind.

    Our futures, as envisioned by those who are currently working hard to get us to agree to their plans and ideas, are futures of emotional fragility, lack of courage, and docility. Though some may have “studies” that support the need for this type of human population, their actual reason for wanting this is simply that they are extremely afraid of us. All out of proportion, really, to what we would do if we knew what worthless scumbags they really were. My friend gives her spare food to homeless people. She has a big heart. She would probably treat the real criminals of this world about the same. But they are hoping to make her, and all of us, just as scared of each other as they are. We need to realize that this is all they are really doing. There is no other “power agenda” behind this urge, really. They are very lost souls who have managed to ascend to positions of authority on this planet. They can complete their work if they can just get all of us to “believe the experts.” They never will be able to. But meanwhile, our society goes down the drain. And I have problems creating a simple, quiet friendship with a perfectly sweet and precious human being.

    This all just gives me more reason to work to take down the current system, particularly in the area of mental health, as they so clearly are NOT experts in it! But many of us, particularly the younger ones, are very sold on this system. There is a huge job of “unselling” to do if we want to save ourselves from this “progressive” vision.

    I am 66. I could die in 20 years. By that time, her boys could be ready to be fathers. And I could be one of their children! So, what sort of world do I want to be born back into? What sort of beings do I want my future father and mother to be? That’s why I fight for a better understanding of human experience, and a total clean-up in the field of mental health.

    Why do you fight for it?

  • I think you focus too much on the diagnosis step. It is a step in the ritual of harm that precedes harm. If it did not precede harm it would just be a step in a ritual. When the intent is to harm, and society presses for a justification for that harm, doctors can point to the diagnosis. That lessens the harm in their minds and in the minds of those who believe in them.

    But if there were no intent to harm, and diagnosis was not followed by harm, then no one would worry that much about the diagnosis. Just a formality for insurance billing purposes. And if there were no harm done, that’s all it would be!

    So I think the problem to focus on is the intent to harm. Not many find this easy to stomach because that means you have to find the antisocial personalities in the crowd, and that begins to look like a witch hunt to a lot of people (particularly the anti-social personalities!). But if it is done well, and without intent to harm the ASPs (beyond suspending their right to practice medicine), then lasting benefit would be derived.

    Look at this nation today. The founders set up the best “system” they could think of, and yet it is being defeated today. Why? Because it did not take into account that some people live with an intent to harm others. If we do not face this fact of life, all our efforts will eventually become null and void.

  • Thank you for mentioning CCHR.
    For years I thought this was the only group doing anything about this problem.
    I wish we could have a place to discuss the resources it provides more openly.
    I feel the group that supports it (my church) has been demonized beyond all reasonable bounds.

  • You understand that there is a current “law” about how much you will get paid. This is the “law” of free markets. A lot of people swear by this and say it is the best a human society can do. Maybe. Of course, there are other factors at work that distort or evade this “law.”

    The idea is that we all offer ourselves on the “labor market” and employers make offers according to supply and demand.

    I’ve never been comfortable with reducing people to a commodity like oil or cow carcasses or something like that. As people, it seems we should treat ourselves with a little more compassion than that. The “logic” of the business world seems to be preventing these more humane urges from rising to the top.

    But I’m not ready to blame industrialization, or corporate structures, or capitalism or anything like that for the mess we are in today. There were a LOT of people just being too complacent, and willing to tolerate human suffering right in front of their eyes without doing anything effective about it. That is the world we live in. But that nastiness, the tendency to withhold our compassion, I believe is driven my the criminals on this planet. So my suggestion is to concentrate on getting that whole problem under control. I firmly believe that things will work out better if we can get crime under better control in our society. And I mean criminal insanity, the real cause of real crime, not some desperate guy holding up a 7/11 because he’s addicted to cocaine.

  • Yes, poverty is a huge stressor. The Malthusians (or whatever you want to call them) preached that poverty was a motivator. I believe that has been thoroughly disproved.

    A sane society would establish institutions to insure that everyone was as happy and productive as they possibly could be. An insane society doesn’t care.

    Many have the idea that you can force a society to act more sane. I don’t think that’s ever been demonstrated. You can set up guidelines that help (like the founding documents in the U.S.) but that’s never enough where criminal insanity persists.

    We should be working very hard to improve society. It is done through mental and spiritual work. There is no other way that I know of. No legal structure or political mechanism has ever achieved this. We will recognize that we are spirits and that we can help each other to heal, or we can skip it and keep living the way we do now, or worse. We have a choice on this planet. That’s something new, and it’s also something that might not last forever. That’s my message.

  • Whose going to determine the “actual value” of their work? A technocrat?
    Where I used to work, everyone got paid the same. Executives and clerks. Rewards for taking on more responsibility or doing very well on one’s job were either given as bonuses or in some other form of recognition. Management recognized that everyone had basically the same living expenses, so why pay some a lot more just because they had a lot more training or whatever? Well, this worked for an enlightened group, and it would probably work more broadly. But for the whole group to decide it should work that way is a lot different than rigging up some sort of system to force people to agree on something they really think is wrong.

    Does society really need millionaires? Maybe not. It doesn’t really need poor people, either. But to say being rich is illegal the way we now say being poor is illegal I don’t think will get us where we really want to go.

    This is a website about mental health, for goodness sake. And how people live together has something to do with their mental and spiritual states, which could almost certainly be improved. Imposing “equity” on a society that can’t agree to it results in something like the old Soviet Union. Or maybe modern China. Do we really want that result?

  • Because it is. “Wage equity” is the criminal’s code phrase for stealing.
    Paid employment is not the only valid kind of work, but money is the only valid medium for survival for most people. If you don’t live in a society where money is required to survive, that doesn’t mean that no one has to work…unless you are living in a spirit world that doesn’t rely on biology.

    The highly disproportional incomes we often see for work these days do not justify stealing and government handouts. They do point to a broken system. We are facing, currently, a lot of broken systems. But let us not choose “solutions” that only further undermine basic human rights. Basic human rights are not respected because we give too many criminals too much control. That’s my thesis and that’s what I think needs to be fixed. If you use criminal means to handle criminality, that doesn’t result in less criminality, does it?

  • To me this conversation illustrates the struggle that younger generations are going through in discovering that yet another round of technological innovations has not resulted in a fairer or more livable society. If anything, the opposite.

    In the case of academia this struggle has tended to produce a generation of young thinkers whose vocabulary and conceptualizations have become so complex and obtuse that they can talk together for an hour (say) without really saying anything substantively important beyond making the more or less obvious point that things are fucked up.

    In the case of non-academia, this struggle has tended to produce a generation of young thinkers who extol earlier beliefs and values as more familiar and workable, and simpler, than what is being proposed as “new” or “progressive” through the academic process.

    And these two groups end up at each other’s throats, as they each see the other’s approaches as extremely dangerous.

    In the case of psychology, the most obvious thing that is missing for me is that the “new” generation of psychologists/students has blindly, or without inspection, taken the most basic assumptions of the older generations to be at once both given and unimportant. In other words, they seem to be making no attempt to look at the thing that psychology is supposed to study (the psyche) and to see if the problems with the subject might lie in false assumptions made about that thing.

    I did not suspect or realize that people studying psychology were not getting a well-rounded education in the other humanities. This is unconscionable and certainly part of the problem with psychology, and with those other subjects. There is a reason they are called the “humanities,” after all!

    Bringing up the whole problem of “neoliberalism” in Western culture is important, but will get us absolutely nowhere without better basic understandings about life. This even gets into questions that some are trying to answer through physics (of all things). What is consciousness, and so forth.

    The basic problem I see with Critical Theory is that all it has done is give people a new vocabulary of criticism without any more workable understandings about life. As a result, it is only contributing to the disintegration of civilization on this planet, making life even more untenable than it already was. As such, I see it aligned best with the goals and purposes of people who want that result on this planet. Others may have other names for them. I call them “criminals.”

  • What are we doing with an economy full of bad jobs? If this place were a little saner, employers would care more about the quality of the jobs they offered to people. But people can’t wait to choose a better job if they need income now.

    Stealing from some people in order to keep others unemployed because they can’t find a “good” job only works if there are a lot more jobs than people seeking work or if you think that the people working are somehow morally deficient and thus need to be stolen from in order to provide charity for choosy job seekers.

    I’m sorry if this sounds a little “harsh.” But we are living in biological bodies on planet earth! I’m sure there are a lot of people out there who wish this weren’t so, but it’s a basic fact that tends to prevent life from being fun and rewarding all the time. A saner planet, however, would be a happier planet. We are here to attest that the “mental health system” is not achieving that. In fact, it would probably be more easy to achieve if said system were totally nonexistent.

  • I hope this work gets interpreted correctly.

    While it clearly demonstrates the benefits of at least one kind of therapeutic intervention to be zero, it does not explore the full range of different ways to alleviate what was evidently bothering these people the most – living in poverty.

    While the financial pressures associated with poverty can be relieved through government payments, the emotional and economic pressures associated with poverty cannot be. Thus, we don’t know from this study if providing a person with a reasonably secure and well-paying job would be even more emotionally beneficial that simply being paid not to work. It would certainly be more economically beneficial, as every job in theory translates to production in economic terms, while charity payments translate only to consumption, or expense.

    Also, while the emotional effects of reliance on government charity (or any form of charity) have not been much investigated as far as I know, there is voluminous argument that being actually employed is more psychologically beneficial than simply getting paid as if you were employed.

  • It is good to see this is still an issue in this community!

    My group submitted a bill to the California legislature that would have made the use of ECT a felony crime, but it died with the arrival of COVID.

    I tried to get data on usage rates or outcomes and could not find it using normal channels, though the online space is full (if not actually congested) with similar reports from various California agencies. Most of the reports seem to be concerned with money flows. Typical.

  • Of course, I think this is a regrettable and incorrect viewpoint. For better or worse, I have no idea what the problem is, other than the fact that organized psychiatry doesn’t like my church and the feeling being mutual. For me, if you stand against my church you stand for psychiatry. To me, that logic makes more sense.

  • For me the telling thing about this work is that these are elite white males indulging is this form of “preparedness.”

    These guys don’t know what’s actually going to happen on this planet, but this gives you some idea what people in this echelon of society are being told is going to happen on this planet. In a couple words, they appear to be scared shitless. And that’s just where their overlords want them.

    This is the “warrior” solution to a bad future scenario. It is very materialistic. You dig in, you tough it out, and you literally fight to defend your position. In the past this has to some degree worked. After all, we ARE living in a material world. If you can come out on top materially, you might survive. This is the “religion” of an entire culture. It is associated with Western White Males, but others have been drawn into it. There is a certain logic to it. It is implicit in our modern hero stories, even in our stories of female heroes.

    It, of course, leaves out the Spiritual (except in a kind of offhand way), the other important aspect of life. So we are left with an elite of spiritual cripples who can see no alternative BUT to dig in and fight if things get bad. No other more creative alternatives offered or entertained. Yet that is where our survival lies. If we can come up with some creative alternatives that combine obvious spiritual facts of life with obvious material facts of life, we might have a small chance of making it through all this with an intact planet and a reasonably free population living on it.

  • My impression of the source piece is of intellectual sponginess. Foucault was known for this, too. I see Foucault as one in a long line of intellectuals who hoped to use their theories to normalize their sub-optimum behaviors while categorizing more and more normal behaviors as illnesses.

    To ignore the fact that mental illness has become big business, in the same way that physical illness has, is to ignore one of the most obvious situations in society today. Some marginal group dreams up some problems and sells them, and their “solutions” to the public as real – using “experts” or whatever – in the hopes of making some money or driving some peole crazy.

    Then to point (quite conveniently it seems to me) to Climate Change while barely mentioning the slow creep into our lives of criminal operations like war, drug pushing, human trafficking, the widening wealth gap, and many other less overt but just as morally questionable practices is at best horrendously shallow. The biggest driver of mental and emotional stress are the pressures brought to bear on us by the criminally insane. To ignore this obvious fact at this point in history is to practically confess that you are being part of that problem.

    From what I have seen, we are going through a period when no one in the academic community who actually has something intelligent to say will be able to get published. We are expected to take drivel like this paper seriously. Sooner or later this will have to come to an end!

  • You gotta realize, though, that psychiatry reacts the way it does to Hubbard’s work because it poses a real threat to them. It demystifies the mind and mental phenomena for the masses and promises to teach anyone who wants to learn how to be a counselor. No more medical school or college degrees needed to help your fellow man! What he did could destroy all their plans.

  • My definitions are per Webster’s New World, 2nd Ed., 1984. Dictionaries vary. The “soul” is sometimes thought of as the spirit-mind complex.

    Most psychologists believe in mind=brain in spite of what psyche means.

    Hubbard also proposed a unifying model. Jung, I am told, was interested in Spirit, but afraid to go there for reasons of his professional status. Failure to address Spirit and Spiritual memory has been the downfall of psychology. It is key to understanding the human experience.

  • I see all this as a form of elaborate avoidance of the true issues.

    The truth is that most medical doctors don’t know what a mind is, and would prefer not to. Yet they want to retain their eminence in the field of “mental health” regardless of their failures at “reducing suicide, reducing hospitalizations, improving recovery for the tens of millions of people who have mental illness.”

    This is because – and it is obvious to me just from the language used – you can’t get a mental result by simply treating the body. Medicine should walk away from this subject. They can’t make themselves do it because they are addicted to the high profits they can steal from us by pretending to know what to do about something they are actually totally ignorant about. The gullibility of the public in this regard, by the way, is truly stunning!

    Can we, as observers of this scene, refuse to give these sorts of debates our energy and attention? They are deeply meaningless and fail to address any concerns outside of the profession. It does nothing to change the fact that these are charlatans, fakers, criminals.

  • To me, a “depression” was always a low-pressure air mass in the middle of a mass of higher-pressure air. What it means psychologically I never totally figured out. But it seems sort of over-general to me.

    Popularly, it is associated with sadness. But psychologically it is associated with hopelessness (apathy). These are two very different moods! If you are merely sad, you are probably considering some loss you suffered. If you are apathetic, you are on the verge of suicide.

    Sadness happens to people all the time and is considered a normal reaction to loss. Long-lasting apathy is more rare and seems to be a reaction that psychology is very mystified about. What are they so confused about?

    It doesn’t help that psychology denies the importance of past lives in human reaction and therefore cannot conceive of the possibility that an apathy reaction might be connected with a past death. It also doesn’t help that psychology ignores the role that sociopaths play in causing apathy reactions in the people around them. A “cure” for depression can be as simple as disconnecting from a nearby sociopath! With these understandings missing, I very much doubt that psychology will ever get depression right. I don’t think they really have the courage, surrounded as most of them are by sociopaths!

  • Your outline of possible strategies for dealing with this crisis seems quite similar to the approaches CCHR (the organization I am affiliated with) is taking in its work. We must appreciate that a dedicated effort to dislodge these criminals from the social position they currently enjoy requires people, money and organizing.

    Yet Mad In America, or at least many of its followers, is unhappy with CCHR and the group that funds it. And who do you think is stoking the fires of that conflict? The criminals, of course!

    What you find if you look behind CCHR, probably the best funded and most effective anti-psychiatry organization on the planet currently, are actual technologies that inform and enable their work. We don’t make a big deal of all that; we want to appeal to a wide audience. But anyone who is serious about the details of the replace psychiatry process should get informed about this.

    The police-psychiatry connection is quite valid. If you are a CCHR “insider” you know why! For one thing, both groups DO NOT have an effective technology for handling the problems they are tasked with handling (criminality and mental health) and so have gone into apathy about these problems. That makes it easy for criminals to take over and introduce positively destructive “solutions.” And that is what they have done. For crime, the “solution” of punishment has been the one of choice for hundreds of years. It doesn’t work! That same “solution” came to the field of mental health more recently (on this planet, anyway). The old sanitariums were moderately successful. But their failures eventually wore them down, and now psych hospitals and prisons look quite similar inside.

    What CCHR has up its sleeve is better technologies. The group itself does not tout these; that’s not its purpose. But they ARE there! That’s one reason we are so determined to keep fighting, even as the power of the psych-pharma machine seems to be growing. What I would consider a real breakthrough for a site like this (it could be considered the intellectual arm of the movement) would be to open up to those suppressed technologies and begin to discuss them as the real possibilities that they are.

  • “Nobody knows yet why the brain reacts in this fashion…” is an untruth. That’s what they want you to think, to keep you in their hospitals and clinics, and keep the insurance money flowing in! But it’s true that it would be unwise to just cancel the whole concept of hospitals for the challenged. They are necessary. It’s just that the ones who currently run them are sold on a story that gives patients all the losses. They think they can’t really help, so they have given up on helping.

    “Nobody knows” is a lie. Some do know. But knowing would spoil the games that the liars have so carefully put together to hide the fact that they don’t really want to help anyone.

    “…why the brain reacts …” is a lie because we are not actually talking about brains. We are talking about a mind (not a brain) controlled by a being (not a brain). The reason educative therapies are helpful is because they validate that a being IS there who can learn and use what he has learned to improve his condition.

    Any therapy that validates Spirit is more workable than one that doesn’t. This doesn’t mean that we need to dispose of “mental hospitals.” It just means we need to take them back from the criminals who are currently running most of them and return control of them to decent people who really want to help.

  • For most issues that people run into in life, education (of a non-coercive type) would be the first step to an effective handling.

    Even the better therapies I’ve run into are education-based.

    Right now we still have the problem that “humanistic psychology” is an oxymoron for most people. Self-contradicting!

    I believe this will continue until psychology adopts a more realistic and workable model for human life, and then fixes itself based on that model. Only after that would I, perhaps, give it my “permission” to try to go out and fix the world. Currently it is still trying to reduce us all to animals, to complex biochemical machines. That is not human life! That is not even animal life! Until psychology realizes this and corrects itself, I do not trust it to be my friend.

  • Well, I am underwhelmed with the level of intellectual insight brought to this problem by these researchers.

    I have recently reviewed some data about this in my materials.

    Extraordinary baseline levels of stress in a group is one important factor. This can be brought on by a sudden tragic event but is more likely to occur where a group or a culture is under constant and unrelenting excess stress. In the U.S. for instance we have the mainstream media. It supplies those who choose to tune in with a constant barrage of alarming news, including these days large doses of outright untruth. In another culture it might be a chronic nutritional challenge, environmental pollution, economic hardship, or something else like that.

    The next factor is hypnotic level. I would see this as simply reactivity, but I am not an expert. Something will happen, and one person will go “over the edge” so to speak and react first. Then others will follow in a kind of chain reaction, just copying the first one.

    There is some small suggestion here that reacting and “getting it our of your system” might be therapeutic. The study seemed to make a point that these episodes should not be seen as pathology and, we assume, do not lead to pathology.

    My materials liken it to being exposed to ionizing radiation. You don’t notice it for some time, until you reach some sort of reactive threshold, then suddenly you get very sick. The solution of course is to eliminate the stressor. I don’t know what that would be in Nepal. Here is the U.S. this would probably translate to: Turn off the news!

  • Yes, another fine story from you, Ekaterina.

    I am reminded of something my teacher said – probably more than once. That the truly insane often target the most alive people in their environment (including children) and try to get rid of them by driving them crazy and then getting them locked up.

    Alive, wonderful and creative people (and now I have recently learned a special category – highly sensitive people) drive sociopaths up the wall and they will go to extreme measures sometimes to destroy that aliveness. It is a major tragedy of this age that some have spotted this truly evil little habit that the insane have, yet the majority refuse to recognize it and continue to lock up the wrong people.

    In my recent experience I have become closer than I usually get to a woman – and through her other relations – who came close to have this happen to her. If it weren’t for “outpatient care” along with many doctors who really aren’t that sold on what the really crazy psychiatrists want to accomplish in society (make it a safe place for the criminally insane!) that woman and probably others close to her could be locked up somewhere right now, condemned for weeks, months or years, if not for life, when they could be sharing their beautiful aliveness with the world and making it a more loving place! It is not a tragedy to be taken lightly!

  • You could say it’s sort of a two-tiered system. The criminally insane give the marginally sane drugs to make them act insane so they can point to “them” as the problem. But this does not justify the use of psych drugs. They are harmful in most cases, and do nothing that couldn’t be handled better with a non-drug intervention.

  • What answers have you found to your two questions?

    What led me to some answers was a different question: Why must we all, including children, live with almost constant violence?
    The answer I got was: Because insanity causes violence and too many of us are insane.
    Then, what causes insanity?
    The answer I got: It’s one way a being has of giving up, of hoping to avoid further attack.
    Then we must find ways to encourage a being not to give up, in spite of everything?
    The answer I got: Yes!
    What is reality? Our collective agreement of how things should be, of what the shared playing field should look like. You mean WE created this reality? Yes!

  • I would not see what you are suggesting as a “vacation!”
    But in the presence of criminals, it is very advisable to disconnect from them as much as possible.
    Otherwise, any gain you make will prompt them to stomp down on you that much harder.
    While you are “away” I hope you’ll read some really enlightening books and then pop back in now and then to tell us what they said.

  • My initial reaction is: So many different drugs!

    I thank my good sense and good luck that I stayed away from all that medical nonsense.

    On top of this, the average practitioner is so poorly trained and likely themselves totally uncertain of what to do in most situations, that the “care environment” looks much worse than a clown act.

    I can only continue to promote the datum that I believe can lead us out of all this: We are spiritual beings. From this one datum can come a foundation of basic human compassion, a studied distrust of ANY drug outside of emergency situations, and a route forward towards greater understanding of the human condition.

  • If what you hope to “fix” is already perfect, then nothing will “work.”
    If a car has a flat tire, no amount of attention paid to its engine will “work.”
    If a computer program, has a bug in it, no amount of yelling into your computer screen will “work.”

    But if a being, as perfect as it is, want to get better at something, it can.
    If you fix what is actually wrong with a car, it actually will run better.
    If you locate and correct the program bug and reload it, the errors caused by that bug will disappear.

    I hear despair here. It is understandable but it need not be your highest understanding of the truth. There are interventions that “work.” To my knowledge, psychiatry does not practice any of them. Psychiatry doesn’t work. That doesn’t mean that all is lost.

  • I can see that you have thought about this, and it’s helpful I think to point out that there are aspects of the “anti-work” argument that are appealing.

    If you have gone through anything like what I went through in the process of discovering how much agony and suffering exists in the world, then I am sure you have spent plenty of time wondering how we can ever manage to make things better.

    Work, though, is a very basic part of life. Of course there is the question of how much one earns from work, but if anything it is more obvious with people who “work for nothing” that on the one hand the desire to survive compels us to work, while also the desire to contribute impels us to work. Those who don’t feel both of those desires keenly are probably anywhere from a “little off” to downright criminal. But how did we get to a place where some people love to work and seem to find meaningful things to do almost by magic, while others can barely stand it (I’ve seen survey reports indicating about 1/2 of the workforce worldwide are unhappy with what they are doing) and still others refuse to work and would rather “work to steal” than to make money by honest means? The answer to that comes from a study of life, not just of psychology or economics.

    What I am convinced of is that conditions can be improved. But those improvements rely on at least some of the population taking a “quantum leap” in their understanding of life, and then being willing to take leadership positions in the world and work hard to improve things. Even in a tribal village, leadership has something to say about how the work that needs to get done is portioned out among the villagers. And I have never lived in a place where dust did not fall out of the air and onto surfaces which then needed to be dusted off. In a “traditional” culture, they hire a cleaner whose sole job is to dust off things. Well, many people would find that a bit tedious. In my group, we have an Estates Manager whose job it is to train the staff on how to keep their own spaces clean, makes sure they have the supplies needed to do so, and makes sure they spend a bit of time on it each day so the appearance of things is kept up. It took a conscious decision from leadership to organize routine cleaning in the building that way, rather than hire a bunch of janitors. So sane and inspired leadership could have a lot to do with how employees experience work, as well as how much they earn and so on.

    The whole question of what portion of human activity is really necessary and ethical versus how much is frivolous, wasteful, or even criminal goes way beyond the subject of work itself. Again, in a society like ours, the onus is on the managers to be wise enough and sane enough and creative enough to make better choices about how they run their businesses and organize their people. Ultimately, it will take a world where everyone is knowledgeable enough to make wise decisions that protect civilization from sliding back into a more sloppy way of living. There is no doubt that we have indulged in a lot of sloppiness in recent times, and that various pressures only seem to make it worse.

    But to target work as the problem is extremely misguided! That this website has existed as long as it has is an indicator that, in spite of ourselves, human sanity is a very real problem. Psychiatry has not solved it and does not seem to be on any road that will lead to a solution. Others think they have solved it, yet are shouted down as “cultists” or whatever. I seek to keep the basics of what we are discussing here – human life – in plain view and being discussed. I think that bringing it all out of the brain and letting Spirit take its rightful role makes for a much more interesting and fruitful discussion.

  • I’m sorry for getting a little over-combative, but these days I am more easily dismayed that I used to be.

    What is life on Earth for? To sit around and be entertained by robots? This has to do with whether we stand up and decide to determine for ourselves what is worth doing and how we want to care for each other, or let some – who? – slavemaster? – decide it all for us. Just because it is quite possible to overwhelm people and make them feel like they have no control over their lives is no reason to accept this as our ultimate fate. After all, we can be free. There is more to living that toiling under the yoke of biology. But if we can’t confront and handle the challenges of operating as biological creatures, we will never have a chance to rise above that level and recover our spiritual abilities to the point where “work” is fun for everyone.

    I know things have gotten really rough, and have been for a long time. But many of us are here because we couldn’t stand to live under post-industrial slavery. Why give in now to the seduction of “no work” when we are so close to figuring out, finally, how to do it better?

  • This is dangerous thinking. “Work” is a bad word for something that is at the very center of human life! The wiser ones among us love their “jobs” and don’t consider what they do “work.” And though I’m retired, if I didn’t have a purpose in life and some activity available to help me achieve it, I’d be very close to dead. Sure, we don’t really need factories making a new model of smartphone very six months, and manned by people who feel like slaves. But for godsakes, everyone needs something to do to contribute to the game of living! And to tell people that work is bad and that they should not desire to work or “have a job” is a criminal thing to do and worthy of extreme condemnation.

  • It is difficult for most of us to comprehend how spiritually impaired some of these “mental health” practitioners really are. It so bad that it seems impossible to us, like Hitler was impossible. Our inability to fathom their depravity is partly what protects them.

  • Bradford, where did you get the data that Hubbard had bad experiences with psychiatrists during the war?

    He was working with psychiatrists after the war, and teaching them to deliver Dianetics to their patients until their leadership pulled the plug and decided Hubbard was a bad guy. Then all psychiatrists had to toe the line and reject Hubbard, or else.

    In the 1960s Hubbard started looking into how psychiatry was related to other power groups which were “legitimate” but had turned criminal. He helped set up CCHR based on those findings, and also wrote a set of articles on the subject around 1969. The reasons for working against psychiatry go much deeper than the above discussion, but I never heard of any “bad experiences” during the war!

  • What a lovely personal message to us all!
    I have been accused of being a Scientologist, too, by the way! Ha ha!
    In that study is one answer to your question. Lots of answers to lots of questions, actually.

    There are beings on Earth who are jealous of others knowing the truth. Did you know that?
    They live, or so they fancy, by pretending that they know the truth. What an unfortunate trap for them.

    I am currently in a friendship with a girl who was once accused (oh, sorry, uh – diagnosed) of having “borderline personality disorder” whatever that is. She has been one of the dearest friends I have ever known. I guess certain people see being friendly as crazy! Again, they are only caught in their own trap.

    Shine on, Ekaterina (my grandmother’s name, too)! Goodness knows this planet needs your light right now.

  • I recently read an article “The Flight From Conversation” which originally appeared in the New York Times opinion section in 2012, but was reposted by a younger person interested in the topic. Written by Sherry Turkle, a psychologist roughly my age, it cites no specific research, yet we can assume her findings are based on research.

    What strikes me about these calls for “more research needed” is the sort of innocent naivete that they project. Don’t these people know that the rise towards dominance of “social media” was based on research? That it is a system designed to have certain psychological effects on the people who use it, the peoples of Earth?

    The research has been done! The decisions have been made! And we are in the midst of one of the most extensive tests of this system since in was put in place: Can you get an entire planet to fear something they can’t even see or touch? By a rough estimate, it has proved at least 50% “effective.”

    Are we, who watched psychiatry put it’s piece of this system into place starting many many years ago, not yet ready to conclude that this was all planned out – no matter how carelessly?

    In the mid 1800s, in response to a flood of translations into European languages of texts originally written in Sanskrit, Hindi, Chinese, Japanese, or one of the Persian languages, the West turned its eyes towards the possibility that they had allowed their “Captains of Industry” to boldly expand without taking into account certain basics of life that might have informed a more balanced approach. This had as one of its effects the Abolishionist Movement, which sought to abolish slavery.

    These ideas, though, once spotted, were severely suppressed by “modern” psychology and its various allies in politics and culture. And then they were pounded solidly into the ground with two World Wars and the violent introduction of the next great path to world salvation: Dialectic Materialism.

    We live today in a world shaped in part by this conflict, a conflict that could be described a nearly eternal. And even though we know today that the “spiritual” thinkers of 150 years ago were walking on quite solid ground, we are also painfully aware that the materialists won the higher political ground, and have successfully retained it almost uniformly across the entire planet. Thus, now even if some of us are convinced of the importance of spiritual ideas, we are somewhat reluctant to bring them up, as the opposition has attained (through systems with Orwellian names like “mental health” and “critical theory”) the power to punish us for such beliefs.

    Social media, then, is only their latest attempt to divert Spirit from recognizing the truth of its own existence by giving it “entertaining” things to do that it will find (they hope) irresistible. And they seem to be, by most accounts, quite successful at this.

  • This is a sweet letter. I call it a “letter” because it makes me think of a message in a bottle.

    Yet it is not clear that Lisa is really asking for help (or advice) here. To me it seems more like an invitation to understand her and to forgive her. She cannot bring herself to be radically anti-meds. They have helped her too much, it seems.

    But, read betwe