Demon Possession and Mental Illness
For centuries, society has placed sigma on people with mental illness, even today with all the medical knowledge we have, there’s still no clear understanding of what causes or how to prevent mental illness. But after reading the quote “The mind is its own place, and in itself. Can make a heav’n of hell, a hell of heav’n” (Beelzebub, in Book 1, lines 254-255). Immediately, the thought of mental illness came to mind. Mental illness affects the lives and well-being of numerous people throughout the world.
I grew up in the household with a parent who was mentally ill. In fact, all of the women in my family have inherited some form of mental illness. The other thing that was pertinent in my family was church. We grew up with the religion, roman catholic being essential part of our life’s, so when I read the passage “The mind is its own place, and in itself. Can make a heav’n of hell, a hell of heav’n” (Beelzebub, in Book 1, lines 254-255).it brought me back to my childhood. Mental illnesses a stigma and misunderstood for centuries. In the 15th century mental illness or the symptoms “abnormal behavior” was seen as a form of witchcraft. The roman church that’s all mental illness as god’s punishment and witches giving their soul are making deals with the devil. Probably in the Eastern Europe and mostly women were looked at as witches, women were seen as weaker and strong influence is on men. So at that time if a man displayed symptoms of mental illness, it was thought that his wife put a spell on him. Therefore, at that time, were put to death by hanging and “witches were burned in Salem in the 17th century” (1692-1693) Hysteria and schizophrenia were the two most common m...
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... women in my family, I inherited a slight case of mental illness.
In conclusion, taking into consideration the way that people were viewed throughout history and the things I was told growing up, the thought of developing any type of mental illness to genetics was very scary. That is why when I read the quote “The mind is its own place, and in itself. Can make a heav’n of hell, a hell of heav’n” (Beelzebub, in Book 1, lines 254-255). He reminded me of the torment and suffering a person can have in their mind with disease. Having no control of your thoughts, emotions and medical well-being, because of a malfunction or chemical problem in your brain. I know firsthand how this can make you feel you’re in a hellish, and evil place in your mind. Your mind is such a powerful organ and really is its own place that he could make you think you’re in hell or in heaven.
Over the last two decades, there have been numerous research studies that link mental health as the foundation for all health, social, organizational and educational recovery (Ormston, 2014; McLaren, Belling, Paul, Ford, Kramer, Weaver, Singh, 2013). The American society and the global world continues to witness catastrophic human induced incidences that often times point to the increasing need to pay attention to the declining state of a global mental health community. Evidence links the interconnectedness of the mind and body and attributes health and social problems direct linkage to inattention to mental health (Rubin, 2014). Despite medical, social and technological advances, we continue to lack understanding of the complexities of the human mind which has further alienated our understanding of ourselves.
In his book, Anderson (2006) proposes that there are mental illnesses out there that individuals are dealing with, that really has, the characteristics of demonic possession. One of the main and most severe mental illnesses is schizophrenia. A problem with secular psychiatry is that they dismiss the idea of demonic possession and categorize the
Mental illness has been around as long as people have been. However, the movement really started in the 19th century during industrialization. The Western countries saw an immense increase in the number and size of insane asylums, during what was known as “the great confinement” or the “asylum era” (Torrey, Stieber, Ezekiel, Wolfe, Sharfstein, Noble, Flynn Criminalizing the Seriously Mentally Ill). Laws were starting to be made to pressure authorities to face the people who were deemed insane by family members and hospital administrators. Because of the overpopulation in the institutions, treatment became more impersonal and had a complex mix of mental and social-economic problems. During this time the term “psychiatry” was identified as the medical specialty for the people who had the job as asylum superintendents. These superintendents assumed managerial roles in asylums for people who were considered “alienated” from society; people with less serious conditions wer...
Continuing budget cuts on mental health care create negative and detrimental impacts on society due to increased improper care for mentally ill, public violence, and overcrowding in jails and emergency rooms. Origins, of mental health as people know it today, began in 1908. The movement initiated was known as “mental hygiene”, which was defined as referring to all things preserving mental health, including maintaining harmonious relation with others, and to participate in constructive changes in one’s social and physical environment (Bertolote 1). As a result of the current spending cuts approaching mental health care, proper treatment has declined drastically. The expanse of improper care to mentally ill peoples has elevated harmful threats of heightened public violence to society.
Once science took place and changed people 's view of God, they realized that mental illness were not punishments, but this didn 't stop people from treating them in a hateful way. According to Kyziridis, people who weren 't considered normal, because of mental illness were treated as if they were caused by evil possession of the body, and the appropriate treatment was then exorcising these demons, through various ways, from harmless treatments to dangerous and barbaric (Kyziridis). Some example would be listening to music or dancing that will calm a patient down. Others would be through strapping them down and create pain. "The term 'schizophrenia ' was coined on April 24, 1908, when Professor Bleuler argued that dementia praecox was associated with neither dementia nor precociousness, and emphasized that splitting of psychic functioning is an essential feature of schizophrenia" (Ashok). He observed the patients and lived between them to see how they reacted to things. People with schizophrenia were constantly battling within the voices inside their heads, unfortunately treatments for it were
In the United States alone, 57.7 million individuals suffer from mental illness. These illnesses range anywhere from mood disorders to anxiety disorders or to personality disorders and so on (The Numbers Count: Mental Disorders in America). 18 to 25 year olds make up about 30% of these individuals alone (Survey Finds Many Living with Mental Illness Go Without Treatment). These individuals require care from medication to psychiatry or even to confinement. However, of these 57.7 million individuals with mental illness, studies have found that less than one in three of these individuals receive proper treatment (Studies Say Mental Illness Too Often Goes Untreated).
Schizophrenia has always been a disorder associated with madness (Reed, 2004). In every century, people with this disorder have been persecuted or pushed aside by society. Throughout history, it was believed an evil demon or god caused Schizophrenia (Reed, 2004). The only way to fix the strange behavior was to pray to the good god because only they could fix the problem. A perfect example of this is the Middle Ages, where there was a return to religious explanations that explained mental disorders to be caused by the devil and the only way to help the individual was by the Church. The Churches method of treatment included exorcism and even more harsh tortures if the exorcism did not work. Many people, especially women, with schizophrenia perished during these times of accusation.
Mental illnesses had not been recognized as a medical problem until the late 18th century. They are usually considered “familial disorders” because many people have gone through the experience before with a parent, sibling, or child. In this book, Mark was the only person in his fa...
Mental health is an issue that has been bombarded with unanswered questions and cursed with a social stigma. Throughout history this has created a social divide between mental health issues and the mainstream media. This disparity doesn’t only create a social separation, but a lapse in ethics, making it tolerable to look down on people in the mental health community. Historically, patients have been placed or forced into mental institutions in order to “cure” them of their mental obscurity so that they can function normally in the society, yet for centuries this has proven to be an ongoing struggle for the mental health community. With all of the new advancements in medicine and our ability to cure more physical and mental ailments than
Mental illnesses have been reported as far back as to 4000-5000 years ago. The reason scientists believe that mental illness has existed this long is due to anthropologists finding skulls with holes gashed in them. These skulls look very similar to skulls that have had the process of trepanning performed on them. The process of trepanning is simply the surgical procedure of creating a hole in the skull. Scientists believe that this procedure was done in order to let out the evil spirits which doctors thought possessed the mentally ill of this time. The literature of ancient Greece also contains evidence of the belief that evil spirits or demons controlled the mentally ill. Not only the Greeks believed in the evil spirit theory, writings from the early Babylonian, Egyptian, and Chinese civilizations have also shown evidence that mental illness was believed to be a possession by demons-using beatings, restraint, and starvation to try to drive out the evil spirits.
Throughout history, explanations for mental illness have been described as supernatural, psychological, and biological. Prior to the early Greek physicians, the supernatural model of mental illness prevailed. Early humans did not have science to explain natural events so magic, mysticism, and superstition were used as a substitution. They believed in animism, the idea that all of nature is alive, and anthropomorphism, the tendency to project human features onto nature. Reification was also a popular belief that assumed if you can think of something, it exists. Sympathetic magic was the idea that one can heal and individual by influencing an object that is similar or closely associated to them (Frazer, 1890/1963). Primitive healers would often imitate the patient's ailments and then model the recovery. Reification also lead to the bel...
Depicted in films around the world mental illness is often mistaken for possession by the unworldly. The Bible has demonstrated the existence of mental illness and demonic possessions bordering the same plane for centuries. Mark 6:13, “And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed them.”. It is only until recent years that with the help of psychiatric doctors the Catholic church has adjusted their procedures when distinguishing the difference between demonic possession and mental illness.
People in this world have many different struggles. Some deal with chronic pain, others with poverty and some even with the consequences of their bad choices. Numerous individuals also struggle with mental illness also known as various disorders that affect mood, personality, cognition and other areas of functioning. Mental illness is unique to the individual and can be experienced in a variety of ways. Three people that have experienced mental illness and all that it entails are Susanna Kaysen the author of the memoir Girl, Interrupted, John Nash-a mathematician whose life was the basis of the film A Beautiful Mind and a woman named Theresa Lozowski who is a medical professional. All three struggle with a mental illness and the way they view their illnesses and the aspects of it are similar in several ways as well as different. These similarities and differences are witnessed in how they view their symptoms, their diagnoses, how they view the cause of their mental illness as well as how they view mental illness in general. There were also similarities and differences in their views on taking medication as well as the treatment of psychotherapy.
Many felt that the mentally ill brought it upon themselves, through moral or religious transgressions. They felt that gods or other spirits were punishing these “criminals” with illness. Others were thought to be under the spell of evil spirits, the devil, or the vi...
Mental disorders are rapidly becoming more common with each new generation born in the world. Currently, nearly one in two people suffer from some form of depression, anxiety, or other mental health problem at some point in their lives (Editor). With so many people suffering from their mental illnesses, steps have been taken in order to get help needed for these people but progress has been slow. In the medical world, hospitals are treating those with physical problems with more care than those with mental problems. Prescription drugs can only do so much helping the mentally ill go through their daily lives and more should be done to help those who need more than medicine to cope with their illness. Mental health should be considered just as important as physical health because of how advanced physical healing is, how the public reacts to those with mental illness, and due to the consequences that could happen if the illness is not correctly helped.