Mental – Psychological Health

Mental Health is more than just an absence of psychological symptoms or fitting within some statistical norms. It is being in harmony with your physical environment, family, colleagues, friends and one’s inner-self or spirituality. When we describe issues in those areas, we use the terms psychological and mental interchangeably. These terms are often perceived differently from different people and can determine how an individual is treated.

Our society holds the prejudices that psychological problems are results of environmental factors or social circumstances and mental challenges on the other hand are seen as genetic faults or individual weaknesses. This puts stress/blame on the individual and points to inner responsibility for the problem. Farther more it suggests chronic state that is constant and cannot be “cured or improved”, just controlled, readily with medications.

 

Cautious is required when we categorize people for research and insurance purposes, but let us remember that the DSM is not a sacred text and it is meant to help in making treatment decisions, but not to dictate them. Approaching this issue asks for sensitivity, meeting the individual where he is, respecting of each person’s uniqueness, individuality and culture.

Identifying psychological challenges, the clinician examines the social environment that is affecting the patient and builds his hypothesis on the socio-personal model. The treatment is based than on correcting, improving, or integrating missing skills in the family system, or any other existential area – friends, colleagues, or inner self. Mental problems are identified by observation of symptoms and experiences that culminate in the psychiatric diagnosis.

The facts:

  1. Every one’s well-being is affected by the harmful influence of the environment. Social, moral, political, changes and distress in the society are often at the root of the “symptoms” and do not have individual solutions and are outside of the individuals control.
  2. The researches expose that the individual is better able to make positive changes in himself and his environment when he understands that there is nothing inherently wrong with him. The change is initiated when the symptoms are re-framed or not placed at all in the frame of “pathology”.
  3. A “therapeutic” relationship can be established only when the individual realizes his personal power, strengthened by the equal respect. This is achieved by actively involving the person in defining the challenges and conceptualizing the treatment strategy.
  4. The individual regains his power when his values and his views of the world are given priority.
  5. Meditation, yoga and variety of relaxation techniques are showing remarkable results in influencing the biochemistry and work of the brain and the whole body.
  6. The Bio-Psycho-Social model is commonly accepted today, but there are many areas of research that require reconsideration, dialog in regards to the focus and the nature of change and direction we want to go.

Our own personal experiences and thousands of clinical observations convince us that the traditional academic theories fail to answer basic questions about our psyche or soul and human consciousness. The main consequence from that is that many states or “disorders” accepted by the modern psychiatry as pathology, and treated with suppressive medications, in reality are “psychological/spiritual complications”, soul’s crisis, that holds healing and transformational potential, when used and guided accordingly.

The research of the nature and origin of consciousness and the dimensions of the human psyche/soul crashes the common myth of the materialistic science that consciousness is epiphenomenon of matter, product of neurophysiologic processes, happening in the brain. The research reveals that consciousness is the original undivided property of the living, able to perform variety of actions, which the brain itself cannot complete. According to these modern researches, human consciousness is implicated and is part of the absolute field of universal consciousness, sustaining all that is.

The established academic psychology and psychiatry use the model of the psyche/soul, which is limited by the biology, the biography after birth, and the Freudian individual unconsciousness. However, if we really want to explain all of the phenomenon of the consciousness, our understanding of human psyche/soul should be deepened and expanded.

Mental or psychological symptoms or simply any emotional discomfort is just a response to our imbalanced understanding of our inner and outer environment.  Every one can easily identify, in his own context, which social messages and pressures are contributing to the symptoms or problems. When we silence the outer noise, we all can hear our inside voice, our true inner self, which if given a chance will grow stronger, clearer, louder, giving us confidence and guidance in our path to balance/happiness.

 

Psychology or Spirituality?

Psychologists explore different spheres of human activities – from obvious human behavior to hidden emotions, and cognition. The word Psychology originates from the Greek “Psyche” – meaning mind, soul, spirit, breath, and “Logos”- meaning study, research. “Study of the soul, spirit”. It is safe to say that psychology is concerned with the human being and everything that comes with it. Spirituality is much broader than the concept of religion, which is focused on prescribed beliefs and rituals. Spirituality is our need to search for significance and connection with others and the transcendent force of the Universe. Many are helped to discover their spirituality through the guidance of religion, but many others have allowed unpleasant experiences with religion to cause them to neglect their spiritual development. This development emphasizes humanistic ideas on qualities such as love, compassion, tolerance, patience, forgiveness, responsibility, harmony, contentment and concern for others. These spiritual values or psychological needs are as important as the satisfaction of our thirst, hunger, and sexual yearnings. I believe we are all born spiritual psychologists in our minds and hearts. Without exception, we all want to understand our own life, the everyday issues of love, loneliness, suffering and death. We strive for harmony and meaning. We recognize that the human species is just one of more than a million species in the world. Our time on Earth is limited as with other living creatures. Life is a voyage to Death, no matter what one’s race, religion or social standing. We all are heading toward the same inevitable place. Each of us is confronted with social environment that leaves us frustrated and plagued by unjust laws and social barriers. Psychology helps us to focus on forces inside us that we can become aware of and control eventually. Let us remind ourselves that not everything in Life is controllable and not all of Life’s questions are answerable. Uncertainty, mystery, and suffering are our eternal companions. The Miracle of self-reflection, the realization of Life’s totality, not merely one’s patterns of unconscious conflicts, or thoughts and feelings, happens when we open up and share, equally amerced in the search for answers. Equally vulnerable. “All is flux, nothing remains the same, nothing endures but change.” So wrote the Greek philosopher Heraclitus. Openness to change is essential for our wellbeing. Nature’s gift is our ability to be flexible, to change gracefully, to modify habitual behaviors and to grow. Every character is capable of intellectual, emotional or spiritual evolution. One encouraging truth about the turbulent times in which we live is that – Nobody knows what to do next. This makes us more equal than we have ever been before. Curiously enough, the beauty is that you never know from what direction the answers will come, so pay kind attention to everyone you meet along the way.

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