Saturday, 30 August 2008

Freedom Center - article and video

If you haven't yet read it at Freedom Center's site or Gianna's blog: Forbes has an article and a video on Freedom Center featuring, among others, Will Hall. Check it out!

Friday, 22 August 2008


Jeannette Mariae posted the following awesome short story today on her blog. Divers(abil)ity rocks!

A water bearer in India had two large pots, each hung on the end of a pole which he carried across his neck. One of the pots was perfectly made and never leaked. The other pot had a crack in it and by the time the water bearer reached his master's house it had leaked much of it's water and was only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the bearer delivering only one and a half pots full of water to his master's house. Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it was able to accomplish only half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be a bitter failure, it spoke to the water bearer one day by the stream. "I am ashamed of myself, and I want to apologize to you." "Why?" asked the bearer. "What are you ashamed of?" "I have been able, for these past two years, to deliver only half my load because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your master's house. Because of my flaws, you have to do all of this work, and you don't get full value from your efforts," the pot said.

The water bearer felt sorry for the old cracked pot, and in his compassion he said, "As we return to the master's house, I want you to notice the beautiful flowers along the path."

Indeed, as they went up the hill, the old cracked pot took notice of the sun warming the beautiful wild flowers on the side of the path, and this cheered it some. But at the end of the trail, it still felt bad because it had leaked out half its load, and so again the pot apologized to the bearer for its failure.

The bearer said to the pot, "Did you notice that there were flowers only on your side of your path, but not on the other pot's side? That's because I have always known about your flaw, and I took advantage of it. I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back from the stream, you've watered them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate my master's table. Without you being just the way you are, he would not have this beauty to grace his house."

(Author unknown)

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Here's to my therapist II - Why "mental illness" is neither genetically caused nor genetically predisposed

I've got some really, really bad news for psychiatrists, parents, and "patients" who believe they can blame (their) genes for (their) "mental illness", in one way or the other. Actually, it's really bad news for everybody, who believes, they can blame anything on (their) genes.

I found the video below yesterday on Gianna's blog, when I had a look at the archives. It's the first of seven parts of a talk by cell-biologist Bruce Lipton.

What Bruce Lipton is explaining in the video-series actually is a scientific, biological proof for the trauma-model to be true, and the bio-medical, genetic model to be, well yeah, rubbish.

While today's genetics take a starting point in a model, that says genes produce proteins, that then activate behaviour, Bruce Lipton had wondered how it, under these circumstances, could be possible for living organisms to continuously show behaviour, even after their genes were removed.

He found out, that modern genetics had thrown away the decisive part of the whole, behaviour-creating process: genes do not produce proteins, but transmitters, signals do activate genes as a blueprint for new proteins. While these signals are sent by an effector, that in its turn is activated by a receptor, who, in the first place, had been activated by another, initial signal. And where did this initial signal come from? Well - and now it's definitely time for everyone, who doesn't want to know about the trauma-model to stop reading, and pretend nothing ever happened! The three monkeys, you know - it comes from the living organism's environment.

All behaviour, all life, that finds expression in behaviour, is always, and no matter if we talk a single cell, or a highly complicated organism such as man, a reaction to this life's environment.

What then about findings, that show for instance "schizophrenics" to, sometimes, deviate genetically from "normal" people? The thing is, when a secondary signal doesn't find a protein inside the organism, that matches the situation, i.e. that would create behaviour appropriate in the given situation (or: behaviour, that would be an appropriate and functioning response to the initial, primary signal), and if now the situation is so complicated (as for example a double bind is), that the signal doesn't find an appropriate blueprint in the genes, either, that could provide the basis for the production of an appropriate protein, the blueprint, the genes, can be varied. Mutations are possible. But in contrast to today's common belief, mutations aren't random, they are adaptive. And they're not inborn, other than when they're a response to signals from the environment, the living organism found itself in before birth.

Thus the environment shapes the genes of the in it living organism. It is not the genes, that, because of some random mutation, produce, seen in relation to the environment, irrational, inappropriate, dysfunctional behaviour. And, of course, the varied blueprint, the mutated gene, can be varied "back to normal" whenever the environment changes and renders the variation superfluous.

Sorry, Mom and Dad, but we're back at "the schizophrenogenic mother" & Co., yes. Actually, we're at a point, where no kind of "inappropriate", "sick", dysfunctional behaviour can be blamed on anyone's genes, that is on anyone's individually inborn charcteristics, anymore. On a biological level, life is proteins, not genes. Genes are nothing but a plan. The house is built by signals and of proteins, and which house is built depends on the ground, the environment. Not on predetermined plans. Every organism carries the plans for all imaginable houses inside itself, the possibility to change plans included. Thus, everything is possible. Which in the end becomes manifested is a question of what signals the environment sends - and of how the individual perceives its environment. Which is dependent on the environment that to start with has formed the individual's perception of its environment.

Brought to the level of human behaviour, it is perception (of our environment) that controls behaviour, not biology. While the way, we perceive our environment ("belief" in Bruce Lipton's words), in itself is acquired, is a reaction to environmental signals. Here treatment options like therapy, meditation, etc. enter the picture. A belief can be changed. Everything becomes possible. Provided that the individual becomes aware of its beliefs.

Bruce Lipton's findings correspond perfectly with what many of us, who haven't bought into the biological model - and both those who've had the experience of extreme states of mind themselves, and professionals as Laing and Mosher - have experienced: change the environment (for example by changing diet and exercise habits, or by moving faaar away from home*...), and you'll change the behaviour. And they correspond just as perfectly with the findings of neuroscience in the field of neuroplasticity.

Nevertheless, this also has a political dimension (discrimination, eugenics), and I fear, no matter how hard the scientific evidence, everything will be done to suppress findings like Bruce Lipton's. Bruce Lipton has written a book about his findings, The Biology of Belief, which I suppose to be a somewhat more rewarding and interesting read than, just as an example, Jill Bolte Taylor's My Stroke of Insight, or Kay Redfield Jamison's An Unquiet Mind (find the hurrays yourself, it's not an impossible task). The Biology of Belief was published in 2005, the videos at YouTube were posted in November 2007, and this is the first time, I've ever heard of it (which certainly isn't due to me not following what's going on).

Thank you, Gianna, for posting this!!!

BTW: NAMI recently reacted to the new findings about mutated chromosomes in relation to so-called "schizophrenia", I wrote about here and here. NAMI's report is, astonishingly though rightly, not half as enthusiastic as Thomas Werge's statements in the Danish media.

To all the Jill Bolte Taylors out there: you're definitely looking in the wrong place, folks. To all you therapists out there, advocating the biological, genetical version of the Stress-Vulnerability-Model: stop disempowering and patronizing people with fairy stories about genes, that are nothing but junk-science! And to everyone, who's out there, leaning comfortably back on disability, and in front of your TV, all day long, blaming your genes for your allegedly unchangeable and uncontrollable suffering (I know, now I'm controversial again): Belief controls behaviour, not biology. Take responsibility! If not for yourself, so at least for others. By stopping to diffuse junk-science's untruths about genes and biology, and by stopping to try to silence biopsychiatry's (junk-science's) critics.

* Now, no one should think, it's enough just to pull up stakes and move to Timbuktu. That's something I've tried numerous times, without any lasting success. The problem remains the same. Only to pull up outside-stakes is never enough. It's also always the inner ones, the "belief", that has to be pulled up. - Although, it helps to move to Timbuktu. Unless that's where your "loved ones" actually do live...

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Mind-altering drugs, brain damage, meditation and therapy

I came across the video I posted on Tuesday while I actually planned to post the one below. The short excerpt from a talk by Eckhart Tolle (the full talk is here - or well, it was; unfortunately it isn't anymore) seems to me both a good introduction to clarify some unfortunately very common misunderstandings in regard to psychiatric drugs and meditation and its potential to lead to enlightenment - as well as in regard to therapy and its potential to lead to full recovery - and at the same time it sums up the answer to the question whether or not it is possible to recover from emotional distress using drugs, psychiatric prescription drugs, or any other mind-altering drugs.

The concise answer, given in the Eckhart Tolle talk, is no, it is not possible to recover from emotional distress while under the influence of mind-altering drugs. Simply because these drugs prevent the individual, who is under their influence, from getting in touch with his/her true self, from becoming aware and conscious. All mind-altering drugs "work" by enhancing unconsciousness. They stand like an impenetrable wall between the individual and his/her true self.

Although any spiritual teacher knows this just as well as Loren Mosher, for instance, knew it, most mental health professionals, psychiatrists, psychologists or other, seem never to have heard about it. How else would it be possible, that, no matter what kind of emotional distress, the combination of psychotropic drugs and therapy, the combination of two treatment measures, whose aims are diametrically opposed to each other, is promoted as the best treatment option by the system? But, well, in contrast to spiritual teachings, that not only acknowledge the possibility of full recovery, or enlightenment, with a spiritual term, but aim at exactly this full recovery or enlightenment with everything they teach, the mental health system often still denies full recovery to be possible at all.

The consequence of this denial of the possibility to achieve a higher level of awareness, consciousness, which in its turn is a consequence of psychiatry's concept of chronic, biological brain diseases, is that the mental health system aims at the very opposite of what a spiritual teacher would aim at, thus trying to reduce the individual in crisis' increased and increasing (or awakening) awareness, consciousness by all means. Not only "back to normal", but, even more sadly, most often to a level far below "normal", and just as often permanently, through "maintenance medication" with highly toxic chemicals, that not only reduce the brain's capacity while the individual is taking the drugs, but that also cause brain damage, thus reducing the brain's capacity permanently and to an increasing extent the longer the drugs are taken.

So, if you are awakening, if you are going through a crisis that is, beware of mind-altering substances, especially of dirty drugs such as all psychiatric drugs, whose brain damaging potential is somewhat greater than that of pure, natural substances (such as the "leaf").

Here is the video by Jane, who gives an answer more detailed and outspokenly related to emotional distress (so-called "mental illness") than Eckhart Tolle does:

"Meditation, spirituality and drug effects"

Related posts at Jane's blog:

"Drugs and meditation"

"Meditation videos, you asked, I delivered"

"Geodon lies"

Related video by Jane:

"Antipsychotics cause brain damage"

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

"There is another way of becoming free"

Unfortunately, the video, I'd posted here, is no longer available at YouTube. It was a short excerpt from a workshop with Eckhart Tolle, where he talks about the potential of psychoactive substances, like alcohol, to "calm down the noise machine in the head" for some time, and thereby to provide some temporary relief from the suffering it is to be an ego-identified individual in our modern, western society. "But there is a price", som han siger, "The price is, you're moving towards unconsciousness. But on your way towards unconsciousness, you feel a little better. So, drugs, whatever they may be, smokes... - Take a smoke! - Of course, pot isn't a drug. It's a leaf. So, the leaf can give you some relief. But the price you pay is that you move towards unconsciousness. There is another way of becoming free..." (my italics)

Guardian angels and evil spirits

Saturday, after spelling out to Larry that our conversation was over from my side, I felt a certain need to clean, to shake off the negativity that, although I'd been very aware of it, and had tried my best to keep it at arm's length, anyway had piled up inside me, and to recharge my batteries with some positive energy.

Part of the process was to analyse what had happened. In writing. But a far more important part was to concentrate on something, that could be a source of positive energy.

Earlier that day, I'd noticed that Jane had posted a new video on her YouTube channel: "Meditation experience and spiritual possession". It's a one-hour long vid, and I didn't feel I had the peace and calm to concentrate for so long a time, before I'd finished analyzing the communication with Larry, also my reaction to him, completely. So it had become late, Saturday evening, before I eventually watched the vid. And even if I actually was quite worn out, watching the vid was the best that could have happened. It made me feel both light and soft and full of joy again.

I've wondered a lot about certain "crazy" things I've done in the past. And although I'd intellectually understood that I'd been forced to do them in order to protect myself just as they were some sort of revenge, although I also had understood, intellectually, that even the threatening of the voices, for instance, not necessarily were "evil spirits", but just as much "guardian angels", they still appeared sort of strange to me. Watching the vid brought me, at least, one step closer to real understanding, accepting and loving. "Crazy" me? No, just me. - Time for a cup of Angel Tea...

Watch the video!

Monday, 4 August 2008

Here's to my therapist - More on "schizophrenia" and the myth about a sick society

So, here it is, eventually. The translation of some maybe a bit controversial thoughts about so-called "schizophrenia" and genes - or mutated chromosomes. It took some time, because of my recent, rather unpleasant encounter with militant pro-psychiatry, and I don't guarantee for the quality of the translation. I'm tired, and don't feel up to doing any editing tonight.

Some esoteric élitist, sectarian, or just megalomanic thoughts about "schizophrenia" as a condition with a genetic predisposition.

"It can't be ruled out for genes to enter into it", my therapist said at my last session a good seven months ago. At that time I was just about to, once again, get rather angry, because I felt discriminated and, well, indeed threatened by this remark, that labelled me genetically defective. Defective. I chose to swallow my anger, then. I was, anyway, on my way out of the door, for the last time, so what.

In the meantime, I've thought a lot about a possible connection between "psychosis", genes, and politics. Here are some of my thoughts, in reference to Thomas Werge's and the Establishment's delight about maybe to have found a biological, genetic cause for "schizophrenia".

If it ever should prove correct, that for instance some certain mutated chromosomes increase the risk to develop "schizophrenia" (and I will believe it the moment I hear people like Grace Jackson or Peter Breggin approve of it, not before), it still is no proof of "schizophrenia" to be an illness, that needs to be "treated", that needs to be knocked down as effectively as possible, and be "kept in check" by all means, as the Establishment usually puts it, through suppressing the experience of "symptoms", and otherwise through silencing and zombifying "the schizophrenic" with brain damaging neurotoxins, euphemistically called "anti-psychotics". It is far from proof of that these mutations ought to be seen as a defect in the persons genes.

As one of the societies, the modern western world fancies to call "primitive", the Maori for instance regard "mental illness", that is existential crises, as a sign of something not functioning at its optimum in society (cf. "schizophrenia" being a reaction to a sick society), and that thus ought to be changed.

These "primitive" societies do not see "schizophrenia", "psychosis" in general, as an illness, but as a gift, that nevertheless needs that the gifted individual learns to handle and make constructive use of. "Treatment" thus consists of, partly, teaching the individual skills to handle and make constructive use of his gift, and partly of acknowledging the "symptoms", the reactions to society, without exception as unconditionally meaningful. Especially this second part of the "treatment" distinguishes the Maori's approach to "psychosis" from the modern western culture's approach, that only and at the most communicates so-called "coping strategies", preferably through CBT, that aren't meant to do anything but to re-adjust the individual as far as possible to an unchanged sick and destructive society. The kind of CBT, that generally is practised in a psychiatric context, is designed to change, adjust, discipline the individual in a way that lets society escape any change on its side.

In her blog entry "Speaking of Monkeys" Patricia Lefave writes about seeing the "gorilla". Instead of "gorilla", one could just as well put "society's destructive forces and behavior patterns". Like warfare, pollution and social injustice, like the witch hunt on differently thinking and thus "disturbing" people ("the mentally ill", "drug addicts", "the criminals"), but also discriminating and humiliating communication patterns in micro-societies such as families (cf. Bateson and Laing), that altogether are a result of modern western culture's egocentric (neo-liberalist) and thus insatiable hunt for more and more monetary profit, and of the profiling neurosis of the ego, its insatiable need for more and more fame and power, that formed the basis for this egocentric culture's rise and continued existence.

Even if there should be biological, genetic causes for some people to react "psychotic" to dysfunctional aspects of society, it would be far from being a carte blanche for the Establishment to discriminate and fight these people, as it is done today in our modern western society - and as it has been done so many times before, also before the beginnings of psychiatry about 250 years ago. For example in shape of the Inquisition.

People who react as sensitive to society as to become "psychotic" confronted with a sufficient amount of destructiveness and dysfunction, have an enormous potential (maybe even a genetically greater potential than "normal" people...) to contribute to a positive and constructive transformation and development in society, that could make society more, well, humane to live in for everyone, both on a psychological, sociological and ecological level. Alternatives like Soteria have shown, that non-medical, non-psychiatric treatment strengthens and develops this potential, while psychiatric, medical treatment suppresses and, long term, destroys it. One of several reasons why the Establishment, and not only the psychiatric one but also the political one, don't appreciate alternatives like Soteria. One of several reasons why the Establishment prefers to pay for countless people on "medicine"-created disability, instead of giving society's dissidents a language and through that a voice in society.

Seen from this angle, only a really sick society will seek to label these people as ill (so that society itself won't seem ill), and will clamp down on these people with the devastating force the modern western society clamps down on them today, with the help of psychiatry. And with the only goal to secure the undisturbed continued existence of its own devastating way of "functioning".

A quite common "symptom" of "psychosis" is the "delusion" of being chosen to save humanity. Another one is that of being persecuted - by the proponents of a destructively functioning society, symbolized for example by the CIA, and in some cases also symbolized by the mental health system. Are these "insane" and thus worth- and meaningless "delusions"? Or does there maybe lie a fundamental truth in these ideas?

At the risk of sounding slightly esoterically élitist, sectarian, or simply megalomanic and paranoid (depending on whose eyes are looking at it), I have to admit that I more and more tend to believe in those who say, the future is ours - unless the devastating modern westernness reaches to arrange for humanity as a whole, and thus also for those of us who maybe have some mutated chromosomes that make them see "gorillas", not to have any future. For example with the help of "preventive treatment for those individuals who are at a high risk of developing the illness". That is, not only by putting those people out of action who already do protest and send alarm signals through their reactions to society, but even everybody who maybe could risk to do so in future.

Saturday, 2 August 2008

Choose your battles carefully II

Because of current issues, here some reflections on victims and martyrs. Instead of some additional thoughts about "schizophrenia" and mutated chromosomes, that I will return to later today.

There are people who are so deeply in love with their existential suffering, they can under no circumstances imagine being without it. Not only do they try everything in their power to maintain their suffering, they even seek out any opportunity to increase it: they are, in a narcissistic, i.e. identifying, way, in love with their role as the victim.

If you engage in an argument with one of these people, they will take whatever you say, and turn it upside down. They will interpret every word you say as a personal insult, a personal attack on them. The worst possible attack on these people, on their ego: you didn't understand them.

Indeed, it makes them feel good. Why? Well, if you are identified with your suffering, any increase in the suffering equals an increase of personality (i.e. ego) on your behalf: you become more, and even more of more, the more you suffer.

So, what these people inevitably will do, is begging others to attack them. Becoming attacked feeds their suffering, and through this their ego-identification. Since the ego actually is a very fragile construct, it needs constant approval, constant feeding, or it starves to death.

I must know. I've been there myself. Not so long time ago. And I still sometimes succumb to the temptation: "Oh, please, let there be a misunderstanding, about a weekend off for instance, so that I can be the victim!" Now, usually, I don't necessarily need to stir up strife with other people continuously. I only need to invite them, once in a while, to ignore my boundaries. I have my voices to take care of the rest, to tell me how worthless I am, so that I can feel miserable. While there's a true drama going on in my head, I suffer in silence on the outside. I am the self-sacrificing victim, the martyr. Perfect.

I learned this from my mother. Only, the little voice in her head wasn't quite sufficient. So, she looked for more drama in relation to me and my father. Stirring up strife: "I never said that", "You misunderstand", "You don't want to understand", "You're wide off the mark", etc. etc. My father withdrew. I couldn't.

I know the name of the game. Ad nauseam. It is extremely destructive. It causes nothing but suffering for everyone who plays it. It was what, in the end, made me "go crazy". It is what I see the mental health system expose its clientele to. With what is going on in the mental health system being a very clear reflection of what is going on in society in general.

So, if you're out there, deeply in love with your suffering, and looking for a playmate to "attack" you: I'm not the one. Read: I won't publish your comments.

And: no, I'm not suffering nearly as much as I did anymore. The mental noise in my head has decreased remarkably. Because I took responsibility for my suffering, and chose to do everything in my power to end it.

Update, August 2nd 2008: Hi Larry, I rejected your latest comment, yes. The discussion is over from my side - and on my blog. Thought, I'd made that clear with this post. (And why on earth do you feel attacked by this post?? - Just a rhetoric question!) Well, now it should be clear.
I won't take down the comments of yours that I already have published, though. I see no reason to do that: "It is as it is".