Author Topic: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism  (Read 9023 times)

Offline sdjeff1

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differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« on: January 02, 2013, 02:34:14 pm »
http://bipolardaily.blogspot.com/2007/07/buddhist-bipolar-hindrances.html
A zen approach to mental illness

http://www.healthcentral.com/bipolar/c/15/38687/practical-psychology
A psychologist's point of view

http://community.dhammaloka.org.au/showthread.php/628-Buddhist-wisdom-for-bipolar-disorder-manic-depression
A discussion on Buddhism and Bipolar Disorder

http://smarterstronger.blogspot.com/2011/11/schizophrenia-and-nothingness.html
A perspective on Schizophrenia and mental illness

http://etd.ohiolink.edu/view.cgi?acc_num=case1192052314
The Influence of Burmese Buddhist Understandings of Suffering on the Subjective Experience and Social Perceptions of Schizophrenia (rather long)

http://www.isps-us.org/koehler/dalai_lama.htm
HHDL perspective on neurology


Zen and extreme states (including psychosis (40 min)

http://www.sgi.org/about-us/members-stories/buddhism-and-my-psychiatric-practice.html
A psychiatrist and his practice with Buddhism

http://newbuddhist.com/discussion/15270/i-am-trying-to-understand-how-buddhism-views-mental-health-schizophrenia
A discussion on Buddhism and Schizophrenia

http://newbuddhist.com/discussion/585/did-buddha-speak-about-mental-illness
A general discussion on mental illness and Buddhism.

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=buddhism%20mental%20illness&source=web&cd=10&cad=rja&sqi=2&ved=0CHoQFjAJ&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.dorjeshugden.com%2Fforum%2Findex.php%3Ftopic%3D2523.0&ei=tUXjUK38GcOorAGOw4DwBA&usg=AFQjCNGpANgsqu2aHrWgJYMZbRudljoTLQ&bvm=bv.1355534169,d.aWM
More elaborate and lengthy discussion on Buddhism and mental illness with more advanced practitioners.

http://www.voicesforum.org.uk/buddhak.htm
Purist viewpoint on schizophrenia and Buddhism.

http://amidatrust.ning.com/group/buddhismandmentalillness
An essay on Buddhism and mental ilness

Comparative-SCHIZOPHRENIA-DIVIDEDSELF-BUDDHISM-MAREK-05.wmv

a buddhist perspective on schizophrenia and the divided "self"

Buddhisms low success rate in curing severe depression. Heart Buddhism.

Buddhisms' low success rate and clinical severe depression.

This information is here for your viewing and reading if you're interested in knowing more about this subject. I know this site is crawled by Google  and I hope this aggregate of information can be found openly on the web as well. 

I suffer from a psychotic spectrum disorder. I can say personally the purist approach does not work. The pragmatist approach is better. A combination of medical and therapeutic intervention is important for a good spiritual practice. This is my opinion only, and I'm sure some will disagree.

I'm not going into my most recent episode unless asked. It's not relevant at this point. Just to say I'm taking things easier.

Any perspective will be invited. I think this may be an interesting discussion.






It's easier to push the cart rather than thinking of pushing the cart.
-anonymous monk

To be normal is the ideal aim of the unsuccessful.
-CG Jung

Offline Lobster

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2013, 02:33:29 am »
:namaste:
Thank you so much, I have a family member in extreme distress at the moment. It is very difficult to know how best to help. I watched one of the videos and will continue following the links. It would seem at present, practice is not a substitute for therapy but may be helpful. :)

Offline Monkey Mind

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differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2013, 09:33:13 am »
I made it a sticky thread, thank you for the effort...

Offline sdjeff1

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2013, 01:00:26 pm »
Glad I could be of service.

I have my own sticky. Thanks, Monkey Mind  :socool:
It's easier to push the cart rather than thinking of pushing the cart.
-anonymous monk

To be normal is the ideal aim of the unsuccessful.
-CG Jung

Offline sdjeff1

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2013, 10:54:33 am »
Ask A Monk: Meditation and Mental Illness


I found another vid about a monks about meditation and mental illness. about 3 minutes long, it's a good watch.
It's easier to push the cart rather than thinking of pushing the cart.
-anonymous monk

To be normal is the ideal aim of the unsuccessful.
-CG Jung

Offline Transition

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2013, 01:31:05 pm »
I think there needs to be a balance and this is especially true with persons who are suffering significantly...meditation can play a critical role in finding this balance, but a wise blend of Eastern and Western practices appears to be necessary...another area where Buddhism is valuable is to understand our imperfections and the temporary nature of things...without an understanding of our imperfections, many people feel deep shame and worthlessness.

Offline NepalianBuddhist

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2013, 02:42:53 pm »
Thanks for the info! I'll be fine if I just work out the mental process My brain feels healed now

Offline DharmaNerd

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2013, 06:31:06 pm »
I was very lucky to have a spiritual psychologist who taught me about ego states.  In my case I had something closer to Dissociative Identity Disorder as well as PTSD.  I got a first hand experience of how our mind is conditioned.  He taught me how to interrupt conditioned responses and to recognize the various personalities(ego states) in me.  Later when I began delving into deeper spiritual waters the experience helped me realize that the ego is not real, that it is an illusion of the mind. 

I also got some insight into the nature of attachments.  Our mind creates personalities (egos) with specific characteristics and values as a kind of short cut for interacting with specific environments.  It is adaptive.  Mother, wife, worker, lover - all may come with different personalities complete with behaviors, values, attachments and aversions.   These personalities can easily have different values which means that one can never be satisfied or happy since an event that makes one of the happy may not satisfy or make the others happy.  So as long as we are residing and operating out of this conditioned state we cannot be happy.   

When we are judging something we are acting through an ego - because the ego is the one who has specific goals and values with which it wants each experience evaluated - "this is good and therefore I want more", or "this is bad and I want to avoid".  So to rid ourselves of attachment we must also rid ourselves of ego and the beliefs it imposes on us.  It is animalistic in a way, our primitive brain seeks to keep us alive by remembering environmental cues to danger or to positive things like food.  We have just extended that to things like keeping a job or favorable social standings.



Offline francis

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2013, 02:51:22 am »
I was very lucky to have a spiritual psychologist who taught me about ego states.  In my case I had something closer to Dissociative Identity Disorder as well as PTSD.  I got a first hand experience of how our mind is conditioned.  He taught me how to interrupt conditioned responses and to recognize the various personalities(ego states) in me.  Later when I began delving into deeper spiritual waters the experience helped me realize that the ego is not real, that it is an illusion of the mind. 

I also got some insight into the nature of attachments.  Our mind creates personalities (egos) with specific characteristics and values as a kind of short cut for interacting with specific environments.  It is adaptive.  Mother, wife, worker, lover - all may come with different personalities complete with behaviors, values, attachments and aversions.   These personalities can easily have different values which means that one can never be satisfied or happy since an event that makes one of the happy may not satisfy or make the others happy.  So as long as we are residing and operating out of this conditioned state we cannot be happy.   

When we are judging something we are acting through an ego - because the ego is the one who has specific goals and values with which it wants each experience evaluated - "this is good and therefore I want more", or "this is bad and I want to avoid".  So to rid ourselves of attachment we must also rid ourselves of ego and the beliefs it imposes on us.  It is animalistic in a way, our primitive brain seeks to keep us alive by remembering environmental cues to danger or to positive things like food.  We have just extended that to things like keeping a job or favorable social standings.

Thanks for sharing. I agree you were fortunate to have such a well-informed spiritual psychologist to teach you. But more importantly, you were open to instruction and learning about the ego. This is not always easy. 
"Enlightenment, for a wave in the ocean, is the moment the wave realises it is water." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Offline DharmaNerd

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2013, 06:19:37 am »
Quote
This is not always easy

"I" went kicking and screaming all the way.... That was the summary of about 4 years of turbulence, pain, crying, and then understanding.   It is much smoother sailing on calm waters.  The ego always thinks it has something to add to each experience.  Recognizing what has been added to what was essential isn't always easy either.


Offline francis

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2013, 04:56:39 am »
Quote
This is not always easy

"I" went kicking and screaming all the way.... That was the summary of about 4 years of turbulence, pain, crying, and then understanding.   It is much smoother sailing on calm waters.  The ego always thinks it has something to add to each experience.  Recognizing what has been added to what was essential isn't always easy either.

Fantastic effort. Thanks for sharing your insight.

 :pray:

"Enlightenment, for a wave in the ocean, is the moment the wave realises it is water." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Offline Galen

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #11 on: April 22, 2015, 02:08:47 pm »
Wow this is a great thread of messages!

Thank you so much to everyone for the content!
I haven't gotten through all of them yet but I will be added them to my information on Buddhism meditation and healing.
There is so much research out there that shows how effective meditation and practices are in dealing with not only mental illness but also physical illness.

I have worked with my mental illness for years. I have been labelled PTSD, bipolar, major depressive, Borderline and Schizotypal (I hear things that are not there)
By using meditation and Practices I have been able to manage my illness for years, sometimes for long periods without medication.

Offline Ron-the-Elder

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2015, 09:33:58 pm »
Quote
galen:  "....sometimes for long periods without medication."

Not sure that's a great idea, galen.  Friend of mine, who consults with me periodically regarding his Buddhist studies tried the same tact.  Fortunately he called looking for help and mentioning that he was having suicidal thoughts.  He was immediately referred by me to his psychiatric counsellor and upon advice had to make adjustments to his medications.  Buddhist practice helps with understanding and use of mind, but cannot counteract biochemical or physiological abnormalities of the neurological system.  Such medications supplement what human biology cannot due to some insufficiency or malfunction.  My suggestion is that you consult on a regular basis with a qualified someone, who cares for your well being.

 :twocents:
« Last Edit: June 22, 2016, 12:04:10 pm by Ron-the-Elder »
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Offline max

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2015, 11:52:09 am »
It is terrifying how many people facing psychological pathology  cry for help on this forum.

Read the words above:

 ''Buddhist practice helps with understanding and use of mind, but cannot counteract biochemical or physiological abnormalities of the neurological system.''



Offline GoWithTheFlow

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Re: differing perspectives on mental ilness and Buddhism
« Reply #14 on: November 17, 2015, 10:49:36 pm »
This post has been most helpful although I'm lucky enough to only suffer from moderate anxiety/depression rather than any of the more debilitating conditions. As someone who is on medication I've always felt I shouldn't need it but the comments here have helped reinforce that there is nothing wrong with taking the medication to cater for a neurological imbalance. I would still like to get off the medication (it has other side effects) but I can now do this in a more relaxed way (and of course under the close supervision of my doctor).

Thank you  :namaste:

 


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