From: Jerome Clark <jkclark.nul> Date: Wed, 2 Mar 2011 14:52:54 -0600 Archived: Thu, 03 Mar 2011 06:25:48 -0500 Subject: Re: 'Abductees Need To See A Psychiatrist' >From: Ray Dickenson <r.dickenson.nul> >To: <post.nul> >Date: Wed, 2 Mar 2011 11:46:36 -0000 >Subject: Re: 'Abductees Need To See A Psychiatrist' >>From: Eleanor White <ewraven1.nul> >>To: post.nul >>Date: Tue, 1 Mar 2011 16:48:01 -0500 >>Subject: Re: 'Abductees Need To See A Psychiatrist' <snip> >>So to hear a chorus of noted UFO/paranormal commentators, after >>giving lip service to possible genuinely paranormal explanations >>for abductee experiences, chime in emphatically in conclusion >>with unanimous see-a-psychiatrist advice, was a bit much. >Don't want to get into an argument - but am bewildered when >perfectly normal folk are recommended to 'seek counseling' or >suchlike (after some trauma or other) - and particularly when <referred to the non-science of psychiatry which, from the >statistics, is largely populated by incompetent posers and/or >power-seeking egomaniacs: i.e potential (and actual) abusers. Without judging the quality of mental-health care as a general proposition (surely one size does not fit all), I turn to the fundamental issue, which is the reception of unconventional experiences. At one time extraordinary experiences, variously interpreted or explained, were accepted as things that, whatever their ultimate meaning, could at least _happen_ to a normal individual. When with the coming of the Enlightenment elites decided otherwise, the experiences were medicalized, largely because Serious Thinkers couldn't find another cubbyhole hole to cram them into. Not, of course, that there isn't genuine mental illness, but as is clear by now, it does not work as a broad explanation for all non-consensus experiential claims. In our time, a body of empirical work establishes that even the most fantastic experiential claims cannot automatically be correlated with psychological disorder. Obviously, word of these studies has not always filtered down to the average working mental-health professional. To a scoffing public, of course, anybody who speaks of having non-consensus experience is, to use the non-clinical term, nuts. (It is also true, no doubt, that - just as you can be mentally ill and lots of other things at the same time - you can have psychiatric problems along with "real" non-consensus perceptions. Human beings are not simple.) There is progress, though. We're learning, for example, that even the classic you-must-be-crazy experience - of hearing voices in one's head - is not ipso facto evidence of mental pathology. Those interested in the specifics of this seemingly remarkable finding ought to read Daniel B. Smith's Muses, Madmen, and Prophets: Rethinking the History, Science, and Meaning of Auditory Hallucination (Penguin, 2007). For the broader issues, there's Cardena et al., eds. Varieties of Anomalous Experience: Examining the Scientific Evidence (American Psychological Association, 2000). The chapter on abductions argues that no single theory, prominently including mental disorder, explains that experience. In short, if you believe you've encountered otherworldly forces, you need not necessarily rush to a shrink's office. But then that's something that shouldn't be news to anybody on this List. Jerry Clark Listen to 'Strange Days... Indeed' - The PodCast At: http://www.virtuallystrange.net/ufo/sdi/program/ These contents above are copyright of the author and UFO UpDates - Toronto. They may not be reproduced without the express permission of both parties and are intended for educational use only.
[ Next Message | Previous Message | This Day's Messages ]
This Month's Index |
UFO UpDates - Toronto - Operated by Errol Bruce-Knapp