Author Topic: The problem of mental illness  (Read 558 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline William

  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 4,354
The problem of mental illness
« on: June 19, 2012, 06:37:33 PM »
I don't have too much of a problem with the "problem of evil" because I accept that evil is necessary for us to truly have free will. But mental illnesses actually deprive us of our free will. No other external tragedy can change who we are on the inside unless we let them.

I mean, the book of Job wouldn't be so great if Satan convinced God to inflict Job with dementia and then Job cursed God because he had no control over what he was saying.

thoughts?
Apart from moral conduct, all that man thinks himself able to do in order to become acceptable to God is mere superstition and religious folly. - Immanuel Kant

Offline HabteSelassie

  • Ises and I-ity
  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 3,332
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #1 on: June 20, 2012, 12:17:50 AM »
Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

I am sort of with Jung on this one, but in a lot of cases, mental illness is a manifestation of the spiritual reality of a person that we and perhaps even they don't always understand. Sometimes what is illness to us, is nonetheless reality for another person.  Some demons come from outside.  Others are our own.  Jesus Christ is the great Healer all the same.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
« Last Edit: June 20, 2012, 12:21:06 AM by HabteSelassie »
"Yet stand aloof from stupid questionings and geneologies and strifes and fightings about law, for they are without benefit and vain." Titus 3:10

Offline Maria

  • Orthodox Christian
  • Merarches
  • ***********
  • Posts: 10,997
  • O most Holy Theotokos, save us.
  • Faith: Orthodox Christian
  • Jurisdiction: GOC
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #2 on: June 20, 2012, 12:35:31 AM »
Lack of humility is part of the delusion of satan. It is the ultimate lack of reality whereby we worship the creature (us) rather than the Creator.

Ἅγιος ὁ Θεός
Ἅγιος ἰσχυρός
Ἅγιος ἀθάνατος
ἐλέησον ἡμας

Offline GabrieltheCelt

  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 7,013
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #3 on: June 20, 2012, 01:03:33 AM »
I don't have too much of a problem with the "problem of evil" because I accept that evil is necessary for us to truly have free will. But mental illnesses actually deprive us of our free will. No other external tragedy can change who we are on the inside unless we let them.

I mean, the book of Job wouldn't be so great if Satan convinced God to inflict Job with dementia and then Job cursed God because he had no control over what he was saying.

thoughts?

Are you speaking of Clinical Depression?  Bipolar?  Downs Syndrome?  I only ask for clarification because there are varying degrees of mental illnesses.  If a person has a complete lack of their mental faculties, such as dementia, God will judge accordingly.  Was the person born this way or did they develop this illness later in life?  If later, then did they live a Christian life prior? 

A person with Downs Syndrome will not have the same reasoning abilities as a "normal" person and will not be held responsible as such. 

What about a person experiencing the "manic depressive state" of Bipolarism?  Can that person be held responsible for sinning? 

What if the medication prescribed actually worsened the patient?  What then? 

The answer is that God, who loves us more than we love our parents and more than we love our children, will judge us a love and justness that humans can only imagine (and we still get it wrong).  Although no one gets to the Father who doesn't come first to Jesus, He and He alone holds the keys to eternal judgement.  And He and He alone truly knows our hearts. 

We can speculate and debate about it, but the answer will always evade us because we are not God.
"The Scots-Irish; Brewed in Scotland, bottled in Ireland, uncorked in America."  ~Scots-Irish saying

Offline Ionnis

  • OC.net guru
  • *******
  • Posts: 1,077
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2012, 01:08:02 AM »
The human brain is an organ just like the heart, kidneys, lungs, etc.  It is prone to disease and abnormalities just like any other organ.  Unfortunately, many religious people are deluded into believing that only certain diseases of the brain are legitimate, but others aren't.  For example, no one says that the person with a neurodegenerative diease such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's are possesed by demons or that they are suffering the consequences of poor life decisions, but many religious people, when they see someone with hallucinations or deluisions, they automatically assume a whole host of things about the persons life and spiritual state.  We have to be careful.  But I am speaking of profound mental illness here.

And William, to your question, it is a difficult one.  I am no theologion or philosopher and don't particularly have a way with words, but one thing I do know is that God loves all, desires that all be saved, and he goes to the very depths of hell at every moment of every day to save his children.  There is nothing that God won't do for us.  If a woman curses God, not because she means it, but as a result of her mental deterioration, it is not truly a curse.  Curses come from the heart. 
« Last Edit: June 20, 2012, 01:10:25 AM by Ionnis »
"If you cannot find Christ in the beggar at the church door, you will not find Him in the chalice.”  -The Divine John Chrysostom

“Till we can become divine, we must be content to be human, lest in our hurry for change we sink to something lower.” -Anthony Trollope

Offline Justin Kissel

  • •|•|•
  • Protospatharios
  • ****************
  • Posts: 31,564
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2012, 01:12:55 AM »
thoughts?

Many here won't have experienced significant impairment from mental illness, so it will be difficult for them to understand the extent to which it can change you, control you, etc. They might understand intellectually, for which I am happy that they try to understand, but it's difficult to convey how far reaching the problems can go. (I am speaking of those who have significant problems, not those who are just bummed out a bit). Such problems do impact me on a daily basis (or as is more likely, an hourly basis), and I would say that free will is violated often. But when violations are routine and expected you learn to cope as best you can. All I could guess would be that, within a Christian framework, a loving God to judge our actions taking all the factors into account.
We all have an El Guapo to face. Be brave, and fight like lions!

Form a 'brute squad' then!

Offline akimori makoto

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 3,126
  • No-one bound by fleshly pleasures is worthy ...
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2012, 01:32:43 AM »
Another thing to consider is that all exercise of the will is only relatively free and that each of us is impaired in such free exercise to a greater or lesser extent.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2012, 01:32:53 AM by akimori makoto »
The Episcopallian road is easy and wide, for many go through it to find destruction. lol sorry channeling Isa.

Offline Ortho_cat

  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 5,392
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2012, 02:42:42 AM »
how about psychopaths? Thats a tough one...hard to repent if u dont feel sorry for what u did.

Offline NicholasMyra

  • Avowed denominationalist
  • Taxiarches
  • **********
  • Posts: 6,304
  • Nepsis or Sepsis™
  • Faith: Orthodox
  • Jurisdiction: Antiochian+Greek
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2012, 02:53:16 AM »
You know, there's a bishop who does youtube videos about this, Laz--

Uh...

I mean try some podcasts on ancient faith radio that talk about it.
Quote from: Orthonorm
if Christ does and says x. And someone else does and says not x and you are ever in doubt, follow Christ.

Πλούσιοι επτώχευσαν και επείνασαν
Οιδε εκζητούντες τον Κύριον
Ουκ ελαττωθήσονται παντός αγαθού

Offline JamesRottnek

  • Protokentarchos
  • *********
  • Posts: 5,123
  • I am Bibleman; putting 'the' back in the Ukraine
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2012, 04:03:25 AM »
Lack of humility is part of the delusion of satan. It is the ultimate lack of reality whereby we worship the creature (us) rather than the Creator.



What on earth are you talking about?
I know a secret about a former Supreme Court Justice.  Can you guess what it is?

The greatest tragedy in the world is when a cigarette ends.

American Spirits - the eco-friendly cigarette.

Preston Robert Kinney (September 8th, 1997-August 14, 2011

Offline IoanC

  • Archon
  • ********
  • Posts: 2,414
Re: The problem of mental illness
« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2012, 06:05:18 AM »
As GabrieltheCelt said, if it's clear that one is not in any possession of his mental faculties, then it's pointless to judge such a case.  However, if one can have an impact on his own free will, then he cannot use the illness as an excuse. I'd say that many cases, even of what seems rather extreme schizophrenia, can be healed, if one decides that he wants to heal. If one decides to abandon the struggle, to fall victim to the illness and the limitations it imposes on him, then that's suicide. These cases are hard to judge, but it's good to encourage people to seek help, and to ask God to heal them.
« Last Edit: June 20, 2012, 06:05:54 AM by IoanC »