dinsdag 1 mei 2012

Is Psychiatry and psychology The Trap that keeps the Human Confined to the Mind?

When watching the first part of the Documentary "The Trap", namely "The Trap: Fuck you Buddy", they speak about Ronald David Laing, a Scottish Psychiatrist who examined people that suffered from Schizophrenia and who discovered that, contrary to what traditional psychology believes and claims, Schizophrenia is not so much a biological condition rather than a cultural and environmental one, as he noticed how many of his patients left his clinic 'cured' after a few months of his treatment yet all came back to the clinic within a year after that, having gone back to the same environment that had cultivated the mental illness in the first place.

This lead him to conduct very interesting experiments with regards to observing how Game theory, which is a method of studying strategic decision making, is applied within a household, wherein he noticed how "just as in the Cold War, couples used their everyday actions as strategies to control and manipulate each other, so what were normally seen as acts of kindness and love, were in reality selfishly to exert power and control".

What I found especially interesting, when further investigating Dr. Laing, is that he addressed a peculiar aspect of psychiatry. He stated that psychiatry is considered a medical treatment and a field within medicinal studies wherein diagnostics and prescriptions for medication are used, yet at the same time it contradicts accepted medical procedure by basing the diagnosis on conduct or behavior and examination and tests occur (if at all) only after the diagnosis was made. Hence, he pointed out that psychiatry was based on false reasoning: illness diagnosed by conduct, but treated biologically. He thus began to question the use of medication in treating what was considered a 'mental illness'.

 Reading this made me ponder on the workings of psychiatry, as in having someone committed to a mental hospital, diagnosed as 'ill' and treated with medication, and how there seems to be a big blind spot in our understanding of the origin of a mental illness.  We have come to tacitly accept the procedure of judging someone as mentally ill based on how we (the majority of society) perceive their conduct, yet we have never stopped to question how it is this 'social judgment' in itself that in fact determines the apparent 'illness'.

As psychiatric treatment and deeming someone as 'mentally ill' truly only focuses on what 'the rest of society' thinks about the being who is apparently having the mental illness and in most cases it doesn't primarily consider actual physical complaints of the being, what is clear is that 'having a mental illness' is based on social interaction due to it often being diagnosed by the surroundings and not by the person themselves. Obviously there will be cases where the person themselves consider themselves to have a mental illness and seek out treatment for it, but I will get to that point later on.

Let's firstly have a look at those that are deemed 'mentally ill' by society, which can be people that suffer from 'schizophrenia' and paranoia, suicidal tendencies, anorexia, etcetera, that would cause them to behave in such a way to make their environment judge them as 'odd', 'deranged', 'strange' or 'unstable' and decide that these people need to be treated to 'get back to normal' like the rest of society, so that essentially their behavior will become more in line with what is considered 'acceptable' by society, which may vary from culture to culture and family to family.

Obviously there are factors that play a role in at what point someone will in fact be committed to a mental institution, for instance money plays a big role, where families with a lot of money will more easily be able to or even consider having someone committed for what they deem to be a 'mental disorder', than for instance someone who has no money and lives on the streets, these people may then become 'the village idiot' for all to be flouted and scoffed by, yet will not receive treatment until/unless their behavior becomes harmful to those around them. Which is why and how the mechanisms of 'care' and 'control' become much more activated for people who live in an environment that is supported by money, thus this also interestingly enough makes it more viable for them to develop a 'mental disorder' as any 'deviant behaviour' will more rapidly be picked up by their environment.

What would be considered as 'a mental illness' based on what is determined by what the environment of the person derives from their behavior, could be divided into two categories: those that are harmful to themselves and those that are harmful to others, yet both are treated from the same perspective, to get them to fit back into the accepted norm of what is 'normal' according to 'other people'. In the case of for instance mass-murderers such as Anders Behring Breivik, obviously it is necessary to get them to stop killing people by any means necessary because we live in a society/community and mutual respect for each others existence is needed for us to be able to live here together. However even in this case, him being examined for mental illness, when looking at the reasons for why and how he could do what he did (killing 77 people on an island in Norway), was only motivated by the reactions of society that demanded answers and not by a true concern for what is going on in this world as to what makes it possible in the first place for someone to massacre all those people, because it is obvious that this is not only an awful act but it also reveals a lot about the society that this happened in, as the underlying factors (not only the material such as the gun, but also the mental and emotional) that made it possible for something like this to even happen was all cultivated by the environment that this being was born into and raised in to be and become what he is now, as a product of this world.

I will not go into the discussion about nature versus nurture here because anyone who believes that the criminals of this world are criminals because it is 'in their nature' as something that is apparently 'more than this world', like their 'soul' or 'inner beingness' that is in some way inherently evil, is in blatant denial of how the human mind as thoughts, feelings and emotions works and needs some serious self-investigation to come to the realization that all of who and what we are and have always believed ourselves to be, is what we have learned and copied from the moment that we were birthed into this world, thus we cannot possibly be 'more than' what is already here.

So the point that I am unraveling and exposing here is how psychiatry has never actually been about caring for the human being one and equal with how we would like to be cared for, as an actual living being. Psychiatry is about society, and keeping the mechanism, the system of society going as an organism of control that has set out a certain standard and norm of 'who the human is and should be' according to certain rules of conduct and behavior that can only be confirmed by the environment and has, in itself, nothing what so ever to do with the being in itself. After all, psychology is the study of understanding the human mind to then, like in every field of science, establish, form and create theories and laws as knowledge and information that the 'doctors' in the specific field use to treat their patients/subjects with and to deal with the reality/situation/case that they are being presented with. The word 'treatment' - 'to-rid-and-mend' - in itself implies that apparently it is assumed that there is a certain 'standard of being' and that we should get rid of everything of ourselves that does not adhere to this standard. The problem in this is that we tacitly accept that there is in fact 'a standard' of 'the normal human being', yet we are not in any way aware of why there then exist so many deviations and why we are not all already living as this standard as the natural expression of who we are.

To now come back to the point of those beings that have themselves committed in a mental institution or that go into treatment with a therapist, psychologist or psychiatrist because they believe that they suffer from a mental illness. This is also a result of there being set this apparent 'standard' of what is 'normal' within society, which is all based on appearance and presentation (as that which can be altered, changed and tweaked to SEEM 'perfect', 'ideal' and whatever suits the cloaking of the actual reality behind the image), that causes people to very easily think that there is something 'wrong' with them compared to how other people seem to be and that they need 'help' to rid themselves of what is apparently 'wrong' with them from therapists, psychiatrists and psychologists that will most likely assess who they are as a being within the same parameters of 'normal' and 'not normal'.

This raises the question that maybe the 'mentally ill' are simply the ones that aren't able to keep their 'deviate nature' hidden behind a perfect picture presentation, the ones that for some reason 'slip-up' in presenting themselves as 'a normal member of society' and that it is in fact very likely that we are all 'mentally ill' within ourselves as the nature of ourselves that we manage to hide from others behind the way that we present ourselves within our fear of not fitting the 'standard' within society as the mechanism of social control.

There are many things about ourselves, society and everything of our 'human existence' that we have simply accepted as 'the truth' yet have not in fact investigated in any way what so ever. And it even seems as though science has only limited us in this point by giving us ready-made answers to everything as if it is the 'God-given truth' that we then parrot in our lives to make it seem as though we 'have it all figured out'.

Investigate Desteni, a group of human beings that dedicate their lives in getting to know reality and themselves in all ways to be able to come up with viable, sustainable and practical answers and solutions to the problems that we face within humanity to once and for all create a world that is best for all life on Earth.

 The Trap - 1 - Fuck You Buddy

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