In this post I am addressing the concept of ‘psychosis’, or the assumption that it’s an illness.
Psychosis is usually defined as a ‘loss of touch with reality, accompanied by voices and hallucinations’. There are no tests or proper physical examination to medically evaluate the person when the person comes to the hospital in a state that they call ‘psychosis’. From all possible literature that I read on the issue (in the field of psychiatry and medical science), they don’t understand what psychosis is. They simply assume that it’s an illness. They tell you it’s an illness, basing it all on ‘observation’. Behind explanation of psychosis, is a very bad, highly biased and flawed qualitative research. What they did was to conduct some trial studies (and calling it quantitative research), see that something is happening in the brain in some cases, and conclude that there is an illness, by projecting a few case studies on the rest of the humans who come under the radar of psychiatric services in a vulnerable state. As a result, what they currently do is to put actively labels on people and reassure them that they are ill. It isn’t research, it isn’t science, and it isn’t medicine, since medicine is supposed to heal, not to make you ill, by saying that you are ill and by putting you on medication they don't understand themselves.
Psychosis is a real event. It can be extremely distressing and challenging for the person experiencing it. If psychosis is triggered by drugs, it does need urgent intervention, as well as help with substance abuse. However, in all other cases, psychosis is a healing reaction of the body and mind to either something traumatic in one’s life, or being vulnerable in life in general when something really bad happens. Psychosis is a reaction, but it isn’t an illness. Illness (or rather mental distress) is what precedes the psychosis, such as extreme stress, insomnia or difficulty to cope with real bad things in life, such as extreme poverty, struggle with identity, struggle with debt. In the state of ‘psychosis’ one does need urgent help, just not the help from the psychiatrists who damage the person by telling the person that he or she is ill, severely ill.
Psychosis is an altered state of consciousness. The person in psychosis does indeed enter into a parallel reality, which in shamanism is a necessary journey in order to self-heal. Voices and hallucinations are projections from that parallel reality. The psychiatrist doesn’t believe in parallel reality, but the person in the altered state of consciousness is in that reality. In other words, it is the psychiatrist who is wrong. He suffers from ‘the normality’ syndrome, from ill-judgement, lack of compassion, and lack of understanding of spirituality. As a result, instead of helping the person to process the experience, and look at what caused the distress in the first place, the psychiatrist inflicts further damage on the person by naming him as ill and by putting him on medication which harms, kills emotions in the person, and ends abruptly the state of altered consciousness, where real healing was taking place. The psychiatrist looks at manifestation, not the cause.
Once the person emerges from the hospital, he is damaged by what happened to him in the hospital, not by his ‘illness’. Psychosis might come back because it was simply interrupted in a very abrupt way. It isn’t ‘psychosis’ which is the problem, the problem is how it is treated and managed by the current mental health system. It actively destroys the individual by denying him the ‘truth’ of his journey in altered state of consciousness, such as not agreeing with the person that his visions and voices were real. It denies the person his spirituality and a journey of self-discovery. It inflicts extreme damage on the person by proclaiming him as ‘sick’, as a person suffering from ‘severe mental illness’. It stigmatises the person for the rest of his life.
Your journey to recovery starts from reclaiming your identity, from reclaiming who you are. You have to drop the diagnosis, and start believing in the magic of what you saw or heard in your psychosis. Your journey towards recovery starts from stopping believing the psychiatrists who tell you that you are ill. Your journey to recovery starts from believing in yourself and your own personal journey.