Schizophrenia: Psychosis or Something More Profound?

Posted: April 27, 2018 in inequality, mental health, mental illness, psychiatry, recovery, schizophrenia, stigma
Tags: , , , ,

People with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia are among the most discriminated against people in the history of the world.

A “psycho” is a derogatory term for someone who is psychotic. Someone who is psychotic is a person suffering from psychosis. Psychosis is characterized by a disconnection from reality. That is it, and all there is to it!

A “psycho” is someone who is experiencing a disconnection from reality!

At first the term was “mad,” then we called them “crazy,” then “insane,” which became “lunacy” or “lunatics,” and then of course “psychosis” or “psychotic.” Just as humans have always done, when we do not understand something, we label it asdifferent and persecute those people. But, this is the one group of people that are still left in the darkness. We still do not understand it. Even though we label it as a “medical disease”, schizophrenicsstill end up locked behind bars, and it is the last group of people in society in which it is still socially acceptable to discriminate against.

In the very ancient times, the shamanistic cultures viewed schizophrenics as having a connection to the spirit world. They would train them as to how to use this power, this gift, to connect with their higher self and earn them the title of “healer.”

Eventually as civilizations started to form, governments were created, along with rules, laws, and norms were passed down to keep peace and order. This was meant to conform others to those in power. Schizophrenia then became viewed as different, bizarre, chaotic, and mad. People with this “disorder” were then persecuted, drowned, buried alive, burnt at the stake, locked in institutions, had parts of their brain cut out, and/or were kept highly medicated to control these abnormalities.

So what is schizophrenia?

Medically speaking, it is a diagnosis that is characterized by abnormalities in the perception or expression of reality and the sense of the self. These “abnormalities” are described as hallucinations and delusions.

Hallucinations consist of hearing things that do not appear to be there, and seeing things that do not appear to be present. Delusions are beliefs that appear “strange” and that only the person diagnosed believes to be real or true, and refuse to think otherwise – hence, refusal to conform.

On a side note, the next version of theDiagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) is planning to include “non-conformity” as a mental disorder. They have gone from trying to be secretive about these things, to just being quite upfront. If you do not act as we want you to do, then you are sick. And if you are sick, you need to take this drug. But this drug is expensive, so you need this insurance coverage.

However, these descriptions are clinical terms used to help give a diagnosis, which allows for treatment in a society and culture that has agreed upon the best way to treat of any so-called “mental illness” is with a drug. In the past it was hospitalization in which they never treated the person, but rather abused them and labeled them as insane.

What would happen if we were to actually look deeper into what these “symptoms” include in non-clinical terms — considering instead how the client them-self experiences them?

The hallucinations are nothing more than an over-sharpening of the senses and experiencing unusual sensations. It can feel like an out-of-body experience and having difficulty deciphering the difference from reality and illusion. Everything tends to flow together as one – the wall never ends – but instead flows together with the flooring. Auditory hallucinations or the “hearing of voices” which is so often mocked and ridiculed, is a part of being in-tune with higher frequencies.

It is scientifically proven that we do not see objects as they are, but rather a transformation and interpretation made by our eyes and mind. The brain filters out what it deems to be unnecessary information. This isn’t new age, make-belief information, this is physics.  Some physicists have estimated that the percentage of light we see on the spectrum is between 1.5 percent and 2.3 percent! That means that there is up to 98-percent of things that we are incapable of seeing.

We communicate daily via invisible radio waves through internet, cell phones, television, and radio. Radio refers to sending energy with waves. Energy is transmitted across the globe without any direct connection. The end result is an announcer speaks into a microphone and the signal travels at the speed of light via radio waves, is received by another signal, and if we tune our radio dial to the right frequency we can hear their voice without any direct connection.

Are schizophrenics seeing and hearing what we cannot?

So keeping in mind what physicists have told us about our reality, is it possible that if someone has heightened senses, they could be seeing parts of the 98-percent of the world we do not see? Or, like many animals, hearing things at a different frequency that we are not tuned in to? I would say it is almost certain!

Psychosis – such as schizophrenia and mania – is all to do with cracking the ego. The experience is so intense that words can not describe. The ego, also known as the “false self”, is everything that we thought we knew to be true about ourselves. The reality we have come to know is breaking right before our eyes. The ego, or mask, is kept in place to protect us from danger – but it also is incredibly limiting.

During this experience, you break out of this mask you have been wearing your entire life. You feel an intense amount of energy that takes you to the depths of your soul. Your soul is set free for the first time since you were an infant, which is the reason for such rapid changes. As a part of this, all your senses are incredibly heightened and you start to question everything around you. You ask things such as “Is this real?” “Am I going crazy?” “Did I Die?”

If we are able to resist nothing and allow this experience to continue, we will feel other symptoms such as feeling connection and a sense of oneness with the universe. You begin to feel that you are everyone and everything, and they are all you. An intense level of understanding takes over and everything makes sense, you finally seem to just “get it.” All the answers to life are in the grasp of your finger tips. Along with the heightened senses of vision and hearing, you also are in tune with those around you almost to the point of feeling their senses, emotions, and thoughts. The sense of time disappears, all that exists is the present moment. All worries seem to disappear as an intense sense of love for everything appears and everything becomes incredibly sacred.  Along with this connection, you may also begin to feel that everything is a test from your creator, and you no longer see people in their worldly form, but rather you seetheir souls and see the message they are bringing to you.

You are changed!

As this state of consciousness comes down, it changes everything. Your priorities and values change quite dramatically. It is as though you have been given the answers to all of life’s mysteries, and to return to the worldly form can be depressing.

I would like you to now go back and read the last three paragraphs and take them out of context. Just read what this experience of psychosis feels like to the person. Now, instead of saying psychosis refers to cracking of the ego, exchange the word “psychosis” for “enlightenment.” Enlightenment refers to ‘cracking of the ego’, right?  Now if you re-read those same three paragraphs describing the sensory experience. What is being described is the exact same thing.

The difference is with enlightenment – people try many ways to achieve this experience through deep meditations, vision quests, soul dances, and psychedelic drugs, etc. Yet those who are labeled as mentally ill, who’ve been discriminated against more than any other group of people, tend to have this same experience happen to them naturally! In fact, if you were to experience bipolar mania and try and explain it to someone, the most common response is “I think you need help.”

And “help,” in our society means to medicate the person so they no longer have these mystical experiences. Now, I do acknowledge that sometimes these hallucinations and delusions can be quite harmful in the sense they are asking people to act violently and they are seeing demons. This is likely due to the either trauma or repressed feelings. It is still a good sign that the person is breaking away from their ego, but they need to be guided by someone with experience so they can get closer to the enlightenment side of the spectrum.

The story of the ‘lunatic’ on the grass: A schizophrenic golfer unwittingly removes stigma of mental health

As a mental health worker, every week we would have our team meetings in which we would go over the treatment plans of the 16 patients in our “Intense psych rehab.”

I had been off for a while, I had needed time out. I was now back and this was the first treatment meeting I had been to since my return. My mind was empty and blank. I didn’t know anything to be true for sure, I had given up on almost everything,  which, as it turned out, was a good thing.

We would have the mental health practitioner present the patients, their goals and their progress.

We talked about this new patient, a schizophrenic, and we discuss his goals. It is said that this is a ‘career schizophrenic’ that goes to hospitals over and over. His goal is to marry Paris Hilton and play golf on the European golf tour.

Well everyone cracks up, the laughing is intense, everyone teases, ridicules, and assassinates his character.

20 mostly privileged white ‘kids’ in their 20s sitting in this board room with their first psych job, determining the fates of these patients.

I am a little intrigued with this new case because I love golf. I am terrible at golf, however to be outside in nature with the sun for 4 hours I love.

The lessons golf taught me was like exercise for my mind. Every shot matters in the same way that every moment matters. If I hit the ball near a tree, then become angry and impulsive, and try to smack it out of the woods, it will likely hita tree, and I’ll be in worse shape. However, if I let my ego down, and chip it out, then I will be better off.

It all adds up, little things matter, have patience, and the only shot that matters is the one in front of you. Swing soft and the ball will go further, nothing is as it seems. Do the opposite of what the ego tells you to do. You can’t beat nature, gowith nature. Use your talents, don’t try to be like other players. Stay within yourself, and be humble.

This is why I loved golf. It was some sort of meditation for me. Those things I learned in golf, could be said of life as well.

I walk upstairs and I see these ratty old shoes hanging over one of the couches. I look over and there’s guy, the ‘Paris Hilton golfer guy’ we’d talked about. He wears the same clothes every day, it is likely all he owns. He says he’s not sick but he has to take medications. He gets angry if anyone tries to talk to him, about his “illness.”

I just walk him daily for about 2 months, the whole time thinking he’s a typical schizophrenic, so let’s write our notes, get him out of here and go home. Lets get our checks and continue living the lie. I was so embarrassed to be there, a part of this industry,  I just didn’t want to talk to him….and I felt like a fraud.

It was nice outside early that spring so I brought my clubs in one day as I was going to go play golf after work. They were brand new fancy clubs. I tried to act like I was ‘the man’, because truly I hated myself at the time and didn’t know why.

Now I know, because that was one of my false selves. A mask I was wearing, it wasn’t who I really am. When you run from your true self, you suffer.

So at times I talked to him about golf to measure his awareness. He knew a lot so I was surprised. Just person to person talks. He had started coming down to talk to me more because it was more of a friendship than me in my role there – just asking him about his “coping skills” and his “goals,” and the other bull they teach you to say in school, and at these expensive trainings.

He didn’t feel threatened by me or assume I was prodding him in order to write things down on his chart. When patients act nervous or suspicious, we are taught to think: “See, they are paranoid.”

However, is that really paranoid? We read their charts and decide who they are without ever getting to know them! I think their lack of trust and not wanting us to write things down is a perfectly normal response based on the circumstances they are usually in. If they say the wrong thing to the wrong person, then its another forced treatment and commitment.

I swung my clubs inside that day. He saw me, and said “Whoah, you got a good swing, not bad.”  He saw my clubs and asked “hey can I take a swing?”

Now what I was doing here was something that would be consideredinappropriate as I was displaying poor boundaries with a client. Most of the people running these places would say that I should be discussing his treatment and goals and his plan only. Teaching him the “coping skills” that the book says.

However, no one will talk to you about anything real if you don’t build a relationship with them first. We seem to miss that in mental health.

I think it’s funny that we ask these people to tell us everything about themselves in particular the worst moments in their lives. Yet we give them nothing. We force releases of information to be signed by court order, and we use the information against them. Then we call the patients non-complaint if they refuse.

I wasn’t purposely manipulating a relationship either, I was genuinely talking to him like an equal, without regards to the societal roles we were playing.  So I told him, “yeah, take a swing, let’s see.”

This was the beginning of one of the most deeply profound experiences of my life – one in which my false selves would all die.  But there was more to come this profound moment didn’t take place in a church, in a school, or as part of a momentous occasion.  No, I was about tolearn about life from a lifelong schizophrenic at a golf course!

Not quite as I had dreamt this moment of enlightenment would be!

He swung the club and it was one of the nicest swings I had seen in person. I was shocked. Of course that didn’t mean he was a European pro. However, I did start to doubt my own pre-conceived notions as an “expert.” Could I, the all mighty one be wrong in my beliefs? It brought me back to a time when I was working at the county hospital. One of the doctors training me said, “You don’t treat the diagnosis, you treat the patient, everyone is different.”

I had an idea, and I went to get support from the program director to take my new golfing friend (and anyone else who wanted to come) to the driving range. I chose the ‘the university’ where I got my golf lessons, it was close and I was familiar with this place.

I got the O.K, and we drove the van to the driving range. We arrive and there is a bunch of young kids — teens with fancy clubs and clothes, looking us over as we walk onto the course — a group of mentally ill patients.

They had that look like “Umm I think you guys are lost” or the “Not in our neighborhood” looks.

Here is a schizophrenic guy with 20 year old shoes, long hair, and 10 year old jeans. We had no clubs other than mine. All the course can offer my friend is a 9 iron for kids, which typically a professional golfer can use to hit a ball about 150 yards. I’m sure they had more appropriate clubs on offer, but it seemed they didn’t want the lunatic ruining their clubs. In fact, they didn’t want the lunatic on the grass!

He says “O.K.”, he wasn’t arguing. This man is 6’5.  In addition to being an ‘ill-fit’ for a man of this height, this club looked as thought it had been well used by kids for about 20 years or more, but my lunatic friend is just happy to be there…as is everyone else.

Then came that moment, the one that changes everything!

He puts the ball down. All these young teens, with their 3000 dollar clubs and their fancy clothes are all chuckling and watching, I am watching, the other patients are watching. The tension is building.

He says “Wow, I haven’t swung a club in a long time.”

I was so nervous at this point – I could see all eyes were watching, and I was wondered, was this a delusion?  By bringing him here, am I hurting this guy and embarrassing him? I felt my body get tighter, my teeth were clenched, my heart racing, I was really feeling it.

I look at his face, I watch his eyes, they aren’t schizophrenic eyes. His tongue was tightly wrapped on the outside left side of his mouth. He has this grimace on his face – the look of extreme like focus. I glanced at his feet, they are not schizophrenic feet anymore, they are solid, on the ground, in perfect stance. His arms are not schizophrenic arms, the hand grip is right, but the club does not fit him.

I sense the energy building as everyone was watching this “freak.” The thing is, hecouldn’t sense it – he already knew what we were about to find out. He wasn’t hitting the ball for just himself, he was hitting it for me, to give me hope. He was hitting it for the other patients. He was hitting it for the watching teens — the bunch of 18 to 22 year-olds who alreadyhave their mind made up, and they wait because they want to laugh. He was hitting it for them!

And then it happened – he hit the ball, it goes well over 175 yards, with a childs 9 iron!  The ball flew so high in the air, in a manner a pro-golfer would hit it. It towered over the earth, and the ball was so beautiful in flight, it was like a magical TV moment. I could not believe it, and as for the others, well you could have heard a pin drop! Complete and total silence – everyone was still. The world had stopped, and mine had changed forever.

It was all perfect!

Had the first shot been a miss, no one would have watched any longer. The first shot was the key! But it wasn’t a ball you could say was just struck well by an amateur. It all had the look of a really talented golfer. He hadn’t swung a club in years, he had a girls junior club, he carried no fancy equipment, nor did he wear fancy shoes or a glove. He was in jeans, a sweatshirt, and those old raggedy shoes.

He didn’t do it right just once though, he did it over and over again!  Eventually people were not whispering anymore, and after a time they went back to hitting their balls.

Then more magic happened!

At a driving range like this, you see many golfers hitting many balls. They are all in flight and all hit well. But on this day there was always one ball that towered over the rest and made the others look like little kids. I started watching the teens – they had started swinging and missing, and hitting terrible shots. Our schizophrenic’s style may have been affecting their game, after all in their minds, schizophrenics who look like this guy are not supposed to do what he is doing.

I could barely move. I had been shown the truth yet again. I hit some O.K shots myself that day, but it didn’t really matter anymore. Things had changed for me.

My new golfing friend walked over and started giving me tips on my golf swing, and all those tips worked well. I couldn’t believe this. Then I look behind me and see there is 20 teens watching him hit the ball –  watching him teach me! It was all surreal and utterly impressive. Of course watching from the side were our otherpatients, tripping and laughing, running around. The world had been moved – for all of us!

Then came another moment – a moment that still tears me up as I write this account here now. One teen with extreme courage and bravery came up and asked my friend for advice on hisswing. What courage to do this in front of his shaken peers. Instead of teasing, he came and asked for help. Earlier they had mocked and judged, but my guy didn’t care about that. He said “sure”, as it was obvious he loved helping. Before we knew it we had the schizophrenic giving golf tips to these college golfers. I would never be the same, and I knew it in that moment.

I remember getting back to the facility and sitting down. My co-workers said “You must really like golf, I’ve never seen you so alive and energized.”  I could not describe what I had just seen and my account here is still not doing it justice.  All I could say was “yeah I like golf.”

We went to golf again maybe 3 times he and I, and we had long talks in the car. He started telling me about his life growing up, how he got involved in the system. I started teaching him about schizophrenia.

Eventually, he said to me, “Well I’ve been going to these hospitals and group homes for over 20 years, and no one has ever explained it to me like that. I think I do have that disease, actually maybe they are right.”

I think others had explained it to him, but he hadn’t listened, because no one had ever listened to him. He was open and without fear with me.  Ironically, I only talked to him by chance really, and prior to that I had ignored him for 2 months.

Everyone played a role in my ‘inner change’ at that time – from the negative mental health practitioner who tried to make a joke of his treatment plan, to the great program director. I started to listen carefully to what my golfing friend said when he went on a rant, instead of just falling back on preconceived notions as I would have done in the past.  He talk about the college he went to, so I decided to look it up online, and there it was, a picture of him, clean cut, well dressed and very well groomed.  He had a 4.0 and was captain of a division-1 golf team. I decided wanted to be his caddy and get him into tournaments. Did he have the talent to be a pro-golfer? I don’t know, but he was good enough to make himself some money for sure. Unfortunately, it never happened.

But my life changed forever with that first swing that stopped the world, and it happened at a time when I had given up on the ‘mental health industry’ coming to believe it was all a fraud. My life change made me realize the mental health industry wasn’t always a terrible business. Yes there are terrible things that happen, and terrible abuses do occur, but that was not good enough reason reason to give it all up completely  – I had been shown good reason to stay. I would work on the inside and do my best to create change. It is only a fraud if we allow it to be.

There is a moral to this story…

We have the power over every present moment we are in. Present moments will always build on the past moments, much like golf. We can always find evil if we look for it. However as Socrates said “Our energy is better spent on focusing on positive future than on the negative past.”  And it was Francis of Assisi who said The best criticism of the bad is the practice of the better“.

 The point of this article is to acknowledge that everyone is human, we are all connected, and we all have things to offer. If we put our being into treating others as equals deserving of love and respect (without the ‘superiors and inferiors’ nonsense), then things start to change for the better.  When you drop the facades and preconceptions, the ego allows you to see truth and that’s when magic happens. When we take that leap, (or are forced into it like those with schizophrenia), what happens is a type of freedom and beauty enters your life, that I can’t explain with mere words.

“Taking the Mask Off” is the new book by Cortland Pfeffer and Irwin Ozborne. Cortland Pfeffer spent years as a patient in psychiatric hospitals, treatment centers, and jails before becoming a registered nurse and working in the same facilities. Based on his experience, this story is told from both sides of the desk. It offers a unique and valuable perspective into mental health and addiction, revealing the problems with the psychiatric industry while also providing the solution – one that brings together science, spirituality, philosophy, and personal experience.

“Taking the Mask Off: Destroying the Stigmatic Barriers of Mental Health and Addiction Using a Spiritual Solution” is available on Amazon, and Balboa Press


  1. Mary Rogers says:

    Reblogged this on Bipolar Lessons and commented:
    Amazing inspirational “Chicken Soup for the Soul” type story! 😉

    Liked by 3 people

  2. bernadetteyoungquist says:

    I think you would enjoy reading The 4 Agreements by Miguel Ruiz. I read it in my 20’s and it relates directly to what you are talking about. So many of us fight to stay lions and feel so alone doing it. You are astute in your observations. Good post.

    Liked by 3 people

    • i read that book about 5 times. It is amazing.
      It was a life changer. I read all of his books, then thich naht hahns, and pema chodrons, all their books as well adyashantis books
      and alice millers books. I think these great books out there that teach this stuff. I have offered it to certain people who i think it may help an theior response has been “what is this about, how to be happy, i already know that” these are the smae people causing the jusdgment and issues. It is hard to get through to some people. I ave learned to keep on loving and do my best and let go of the results.
      we just have to almost forget everything we think we know. We must drop all the percieved knowlege that we think we have and that is scary to alot of people

      Liked by 2 people

  3. oils4mylamp says:

    Awesome testimony! This brought tears to my eyes. Who is the patient? Who is the medical professional? The lines were blurred with a lesson to learn for the sane. Thank you for this well written piece.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. charlypriest says:

    This was truly an inspiring story, I think I mentioned to you before, long time ago so you probably don´t remember that I have a family member who suffers from schizophrenia. So it hits home. But what a story this was, and what you said about staying in the job and try to fight the injustices from within…props for you my man. I´m glad that there are people out there like you. What did take me by surprise was that so many mental health professionals who are there to help people are such an a-holes. But glad that people like you do exist. What a cool and inspiring story this was.

    Liked by 2 people

    • There are people that get into the job thinking that they are helping by controlling, dominating, and pushing around those that are vulnerable.

      Then the new staff that see it and think that is the way we “help”

      Thank toy very much for your words, it is widths low that i look to when in really down and feel hopeless


  5. 777tash777 says:

    beautiful! you are such a ray of light and truth my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. dweezer19 says:

    What a tender and poignant story-moment-that you were blessed to be a part of. All because you took down the walls that everyone else puts up for the comfort of ‘sameness’, of sterile normalcy which is in and of itself a complete delusion. Congratulations. Wonderful story. I wish you well.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. jambulee says:

    What a great story. Thank you very much for being so open and honest. many years ago I was diagnosed as bipolar. Under control now without meds or other drugs. Thanks again, david

    Liked by 1 person

  8. bellafeega says:

    You words are helping my heart today. Thank you for writing them.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Liz says:

    Thank you for reposting, this is a inspiring and beautiful story. I hope you have a nice day!


  10. neighsayer says:

    thanks, Cort. Amazing as always.
    (I also love golf and am terrible at it, can’t seem to break 100. I see the lessons it teaches, the ones you mention, I just can’t seem to learn them.)



  11. Sarah H says:

    “He didn’t feel threatened by me or that I was against him, or that I writing things down in his chart. When patients do that, we think, see they are paranoid. However, is that really paranoid? We read their charts and decide who they are without ever getting to know them. I think lacking trust and not wanting us to write things down is a perfectly normal response based on the circumstances they are usually in.”

    Nail on the head, my friend. Nail on the head! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Reading the post, I am overwhelmed with emotion. I am studying for a Bachelor’s in Psychology. Thank you for this life lesson. I am grateful for what I have just experienced. Joy!!! Dale


  13. artistdevee says:

    This story was captivating. I think the lesson of treating others as equals and truly listening is one that can be applied to many issues in our society. Thanks for a great read!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I saw the lunatic on the grass and I was drawn to this post. Pink Floyd is truly something special. As I read the whole post, I kept telling myself that I have experienced so many of the issues you talk about. I can see just imagine the looks on everyone’s face as he swung that club. It certainly is true that You cannot judge a book by its cover. I know a whole bunch of people who have special talents like playing music or playing golf and you would never know it. They rarely play, but when they do, it is magic. One friend of mine is so musically gifted it is hard to explain. However, he has no social skills and some serious psych issues. When he puts drum sticks or a guitar in his hands, he comes alive. Nobody can believe it. I happen to have many instruments, but I am not even tolerable. When he come over, he always picks up the guitar and goes to town. I do my best to keep up with him, but I just pretend. He seems to get in his “flow” and all his issues just disappear. Very magical indeed. I wish he would come over more often. I am glad you got to know the lunatic on the grass. Both of you are better because of that. Very nice story.

    Keep cranking,

    Robert the DividendDreamer


  15. myplace2spu says:

    Reblogged this on myplace2spu and commented:
    Because we’re all in this…together. I think we forget that and this is a lovely example!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Allie says:

    This is without a doubt my favourite blog post ever. Thank you so much for writing this

    Liked by 1 person

  17. What an amazing and inspirational post 😀 Thank you so much for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. remanandhra says:

    ”Even though we label it as a medical disease, they still end up locked up behind bars and it is the last group of people in society in which it is still socially acceptable to discriminate against.”

    Few centuries from now we may possibly be very ashamed that we have been letting such things to happen for so long.

    ”Eventually as civilizations started to form, governments were created, along with rules, laws, and norms were passed down to keep peace and order. This meant, to conform to those in power.”

    The norms that were established by religious groups were historically so powerfully binding that we are subjected to them even nowadays. Think about refusing women to fulfill the same roles as men enjoy in the Church.

    ”It is scientifically proven that we do not see objects as they are, but rather a transformation and interpretation made by our eyes and mind. The brain filters out what it deems to be unnecessary information. This isn’t new age, make-belief information, this is physics.”

    [ What we observe is not nature itself, but nature exposed to our method of understanding. ]
    Werner Heisenberg

    ”If we are able to resist nothing and allow this experience to continue we will feel other symptoms such as feeling connection and a sense of oneness with the universe. You begin to feel that you are everyone and everything, and they are all you.”

    As much as I am aware, it is commonly regarded by neurologists that these types of experience are tricks that our minds play with us just as NDE experiences are believed to be. If they are not, it paints quite a different picture.

    ”If we start to treat people as equals, who deserve respect and love, instead of superiors and inferiors, you start to change.”

    I am convinced for a long time that this is the only sensible way of treating people: no one is ”better” than me but no one is also ”worse” than me. Just the same potential flowing from the same stream but in different patterns. No single pattern is better or worse than other. I believe that, at most fundamental level, everyone is the same thing, whatever it is. In potential we are identical and one, in expression we are different and many. Maybe it is that simple.

    The dychotomy that you describe in this article – normal/abnormal is in a way similar to dychotomy of natural/unnatural, natural/paranormal and sinful body/pure mind. We create this type of division in many spheres of life, but clearly nature embraces and encompasses the whole spectrum in the same manner. It is we who have problem with dealing with the whole spectrum, not nature. Maybe because we started with a wrong foundation – that there is a conflict in nature and a dividing line between two sides. What if everything in nature is equally permitted, important and ”in place”?

    Liked by 1 person

  19. My cousin was recently diagnosed in her late 40s.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Nurse Kelly says:

    I was surprised to see a post so soon from you, and then saw the older comment dates, so I assume you just posted this again. Glad you did, so I could read it! Seems like all that you believe in was reaffirmed on that day. Thanks for another inspirational story 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes I redid it. I wrote it when I started the blog a year ago. Then I made some changes and reposted it. Too tired to write anything new. Although I have about 200 posts as ideas I was reminded of this day so I rewrote it a bit. It WAS A GREAT DAY when this happened. it’s a very important story. We. I wrote it before not many people read it. For some reason I’m just exhausted lately. Maybe need a break or vacation. But this day was magical and I got the urge to reshape it

      Liked by 1 person

      • Nurse Kelly says:

        I’m glad you did, and I think I would do it a few more times as well! I am exhausted, too. Have so much work with presentation writing, I have no time for blog writing. Hope you get a break soon!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I keep saying I need a break but I really don’t ever take one. I must really not want one. I move doing it. But love my regular job as well. What do you do presentations on?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Nurse Kelly says:

        Various health topics. Today’s was on sleep. Had an educated audience, so I could go into a lot in depth. Sound fun?! Actually I love this stuff. Then I coach afterwards. But it’s more like being a therapist, because people have so much they need to share – they rarely stay on health-related topics. But I love my job – not complaining, just tired. Sorry to ramble lol

        Liked by 1 person

      • That sounds like a lot of fun actually. I love doing presentations and talking to audiences. It is fun. I do it at times. You have got it made!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Nurse Kelly says:

        Yes, I do – I don’t take it for granted, trust me! It’s a lot of work, though – not easy, especially the travel. But it’s worth it when you are fortunate enough to have a job you really like – just like you!

        Liked by 1 person

  21. Wow, your writing is beautiful. Every post I read by you changes me and my life for the better.

    Liked by 3 people

  22. Reblogged this on crashinglessons and commented:
    Such brilliance, this one got me right in the soul.


  23. Thank you for sharing this. It was beautiful, and I love the part where he hit the ball and it flew

    I also counsel people and one of the priorities is to create a relationship with the patient. Make them feel safe and supportive. To listen to them attentively, acknowledge them and their feelings, empower them, and help them get better. You have to explain the problem and why he was diagnosed that way.
    Schizophrenia is a very complicated disease, but it shouldn’t define anyone. I’ve also worked with some of them. They are also normal people, the only problem is they have a problem distinguishing reality due to their hallucinations or delusions.
    I hope that something like this will happen to change the views of other people or the society about mental health, and diseases.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for this wonderful insight. It is true, it does not define the patient. Labels get attached to people and we start to attach everything that person does to that label. It is dangerous when we start doing that


      • Yes, it’s dangerous, especially if they take it so badly and it drives them to the brink and make them just end everything. It’s an inconvenient truth that things like this happen.

        You mentioned the nature being responsible, I believe it was because of the wrong foundation that started the mental health stigma and it was passed on to the next generation to generation.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Those thst suffer from mental illness have been mistreated and the patients have been the most persecuted people and it has been for centuries. It is a community and generational lie that will take a long time to reverse. But one moment at a time, it will be done


      • Yes, one step at a time to undo it. I’m sure we’ll get there.

        Liked by 1 person

      • We may not be around to see it. But hopefully that doesn’t prevent people from speaking up and telling their stories

        Liked by 1 person

  24. Mauro says:

    thank you! great article. Yoga will help your golf game! You should give disc golf a try. Some awsome courses out there. Good stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. Mauro says:

    Reblogged this on mauroyoga and commented:
    Soul rising story.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Awesome! Thank you for the insight into this!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. I love the title of this post – you’ve got to keep the loonies on the path!
    This whole post was inspirational but just goes to show that we can do more than society believes and people who are mentally ill are very underestimated by the establishment. I got laughed at two weeks ago by a psychiatric nurse for saying I’d been wondering about doing a second degree and becoming a dietician. Apparently this was a hilarious thing to say. I guess according to them, I should go and get a name badge job and sit behind a checkout like a good little servant of the consumeriarchy and earn minimum wage so they can call me a “success story” for my bipolar “recovery.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s ridiculous. But it’s true. I see staff members all the time “oh she can’t work, oh he can’t go to school” it’s all based on lies that get repeated and never fact checked.

      Love your comment, one of the best ever!

      Liked by 1 person

  28. marsnplato says:

    Reblogged this on marsnplato and commented:

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Sarhn says:

    I feel blessed to have found your writing. You are a kindred spirit.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Reblogged this on georgialeesays and commented:
    Re-blogged from “Take off the Mask” – a mental health worker “treats the patient, not the diagnosis,” counter-intuitive to prevailing labels, stigmas and missed-treatment.

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Golf! For a large part of my life I didn’t understand it, dismissed it, hated it. Then I had a golf experience and thought “it’s not so bad”

    I wonder how many golfers have the same experience of people experiencing mental distress?

    As an aside, I have been prevented several times by those more sensible from creating a golf and mental health type project.

    Liked by 1 person

  32. writing, writing, words words words. says:

    Thank you for such a wonderful story. I enjoy your writing so much and as said by someone else, reading your posts always brightens my day and renews my faith in human nature. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Marie Abanga says:

    I recently visited a dear friend in Brattleboro VT, she’s been diagnosed S… for over 4 decades now. She was in an institution when I got there, and had lost her voice yet again. This was my maiden visit to her and that country of yours altogether. She thought me several wonderful lessons, the most impactful being this: a $ is just that, a $. Here was I a … whinning about money and train fare etc etc, and here is she, a … …, urging me on? I simply put felt so embarrased and humbled beyond measure. Thanks for all you do TTMO 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  34. Talking through experience and knowing what I now know, I would say we are all bi-polar, we were created with two lives, for 47 years I lived with what would be described and was diagnosed as mental health issues.
    In that time I have also been a very keen golfer, so I can really relate to this article, I was playing golf obsessively, yes it is a wonderful game and can teach us so much, my trouble i was in no position to earn.
    Just like all things I would through everything at it (this included two marriages) in order to be the best, my sole reason for doing this to be adored and loved by others. It had the opposite effect.
    Then my world changed and what you describe ….heightened hearing, able to see into others lives etc all happened and is still happening.
    I believe ALL you are describing are heart issues and all come from the way we are designed…..the fragile ego…the false self all need to broken down……………and so much can be learned by those who think they are right from those who are in their eyes supposedly different and would appear to be abnormal.
    Psychology, psychosis, mental health issues are supposedly issues of the mind, the problem being in the holy scripture of ancient Hebrew……the original language the word mind does not exist….the word, LEV, meaning heart is translated to say mind……..when you get what the heart is…..what the soul is……and what the spirit is……then the right connections are made and a whole different world opens up before you……..this world is so quick to label things when something doesnt fit our concepts…… Hebrew there are none, only realities and life in every letter, so the language paints images and it comes alive…………..when we get there so do we.
    The reason I am here is I am attempting to start my own site, for the most part it is still a vision in my heart, a concept, the task is bringing it to fruition and it becoming reality……it is holypathwayministries………..the journey has begun I have taken the first step…….but in reality I took that 53 years ago.
    We are all born geniusus, those who manage to keep it, the minority, are viewed by the majority as being abnormal…..then those of us who know it but have been trapped in a cage by this world, end up being drugged to conform to its standard.
    Sorry for going off on one, but your post set my heart on fire, it and many of the others I have read are excellent.
    Looking forward to reading many more.

    Liked by 1 person

  35. Great story…thanks…golf is a wonderful meditation, you are right

    Liked by 1 person

  36. madavmyers says:

    Reblogged this on Let's Talk About Schizophrenia and commented:
    I think this is a very great article. You should take a look at it.

    Liked by 1 person

  37. popagandi says:

    You write amazing stuff- I reblogged one of your pieces and titled it ” stuff I wish I had written.”

    I write my blog as a language learning tool for immigrants, and new citizens. As an American, I have fallen in to all of those culture traps- we have become a culture of entrapment, as much as a culture of liberation.

    So I try to point to the pitfalls for others sake- and I understand the actual legal, physical, and financial risks involved by doing so.

    I have had various threats directed at me over the internet by IP addresses that trace back to Langley Virginia, Fort Meade, and other agency towns, as well as local police departments, and others _ I write other blogs anonymously.

    So, I write about masks too! Masks are necessary when dragged into the culture wars.

    Liked by 2 people

  38. popagandi says:

    I once played the schizophrenic golfer in the play ” The Boys Next Door.”

    Beyond that experience being cathartic in many ways- it’s just a damn good play.

    My blog life is about working through baggage and stigma that I have incurred from living in an emergent police state, that echoes childhood experiences but I am also using blogs to take notes for my in-progress novels.

    The great stumbling block of stigma applied to persons who question the narcissism and psychopathy of the culture around them is profound indeed.

    John Nash is one great example-with what he later said about “his” mental illness, contrasted with what we now know for fact about how intelligence agencies ” sweat” certain individuals is a telling cautionary tale.

    The play also brilliantly demonstrates the cause and effect of so- called schizophrenia: sensitive, intelligent but battered boy escapes reality by becoming a golfer in his own mind.

    I am a writer like Barry is a golfer;-)

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m going to check all this out.
      John Nash is a great example you are right.

      You are a major voice in this fight


      • popagandi says:

        Hmmmm. Major? I am just one. But thank you….

        I hope I can get to a place of safety where I can finish a certain novel. America is not a safe place for writers anymore. The state mechanism has closed us in, and as I said in one recent post- they have insidiously shifted the burden of self defense to the people- AND criminalized the defense!

        But my novel has to do with a teen prostitute who claims to have been a mind control victim back in the 80’s.

        Her father was a disgraced policeman, and the main tension isn’t as one might think- a tension between a father and a daughter as we have been propagandized- but rather a tension between compromised police and state narratives via the usurpation of individual narratives of abuse.

        It is set in the witch hunt era of a late 80s midwestern state known for its history of eugenic experimentation.

        But as I said- discussing this story has brought interesting threats from certain sectors who I have actually documented in real time, via IP’s and other standard evidentiary methods.

        Put another way- everything Edward Snowden told us is true, but add MKULTRA on steroids and throw in the experience of John Nash.

        The cult of intelligence at the millenium makes the 50’s look like Mr. Rogers.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Your novel sounds interesting. You’ll have to let me know when it’s done


  39. popagandi says:

    Yes, I will gladly share that. Between here and there, hopefully you can find the time to read a work better than my own- Boys Next Door.

    It really was a breakthrough for removing stigma in its era. There is a movie as well.

    I see you are in Europe? You know, I write about masks a lot because pop culture discourse is full of them. Pseudonyms, Anonymous hackers, white females in face paint, street culture too uses monikers and handles to disguise stigma.

    Also- I see your mask is one from the culture of Mexican wrestling la maska lucha!

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are so observant and intelligent. I like ypu!

      Liked by 1 person

      • popagandi says:

        The feeling is mutual. I just read your bio-much of what I write addresses official narrative: institutional and state level bullying.

        So your story is quite interesting. In the era you were institutionalized, there was a concerted international effort to stigmatize males of breeding age. A concerted effort to limit so many other things after stigma is applied.

        Looking back over the years, I realize that I have lost so much- and meanwhile: sociopaths still run the institutions, narcissists compile ever growing lists of victims to their leadership, etc.

        And the illusion of democracy, it turns out, is that those who gave the money, are those to ‘ protect’ themsekves from being revealed; to protect their kids from stigma via lawyers.

        One of your stories, about Dusty, was quite well written- explained that illusory privilege of social narrative wherein the rich avoid stigma.

        In light if these discrepancies in the social net, the police state has emerged as a panacea against didscourse such as this.

        In America, as you see, the internet is tapped- and uf not tapped here, then tapped in your nation. It is designed to stop us from unmasking them, and applying stigma.

        Here, cops are killing nentally ill by rote; feeding the homeless is illegal in some cities; people get shot in the back all the time.

        Because I study propaganda, I am also keenly aware of history, and these are dangerous times for the stigmatized.

        How do you resist them? Reveal them? How to defeat their narrative in your head?

        It seems like you chose nursing;-)

        Liked by 1 person

      • One person at a time, until every cage is empty.

        You are very smart, you are important in this fight


      • popagandi says:

        Yes. One at a time. It’s slow work.

        Liked by 1 person

      • We may never see the results we wish for but they will happen keep plugging away

        Liked by 1 person

      • popagandi says:

        Say- you work in the osych field, right? What do you nake of this idea of ” gang stalking?”

        Liked by 1 person

      • popagandi says:

        Yeah. Look it up. It’s a phenomenon.


  40. popagandi says:

    Have you managed to look into the gang stalking phenomenon?

    Liked by 1 person

  41. popagandi says:

    What do you make of it? Once upon a time, it was schizophrenia; with todays technology, and proven methods of internet, phone and other subversions of justice, it seems less and less schizo, and more probable/ real.

    Have you seen patients with this? Is psychiatry aware of it as a phenomenon? But it looks a lot like MKULTRA rebooted with the technological aparatus in place now.

    There is a great Info/ disinfo operation surrounding it. Some blogs-you see what looks like a schizophrenic describing their experience-and then, the blog goes offline for awhile, reboots months later and there is all of this “new” and very discrediting narrattive spliced into old posts.


  42. […] Source: The lunatic is on the grass: A schizophrenic golfer unwittingly removes stigma of mental health […]


  43. […] Source: The lunatic is on the grass: A schizophrenic golfer unwittingly removes stigma of mental health […]

    Liked by 1 person

  44. Janice says:

    What a great article. I was raised by a schizophrenic mother and it was by no means a dream childhood as she was physically and mentally abusive. But in reality I was given a great gift in life. You see I harbor no animosity towards her and the way she treated me because I saw her as a person first who had basically missed experiencing life as she may have if she were not impaired. So thank you for pointing out that we must look beyond labels and see one another as a human being trying to navigate and enjoy our experience on earth. – with love

    Liked by 1 person

  45. Great writing, and I always knew there was judgement and jokes being made about patients. I sensed that being a patient myself.

    Liked by 1 person

  46. Wow, what an amazing journey to self-discovery! I don’t usually read such long articles, but your story captivated me. Thanks for sharing.

    “When you drop everything the ego tells you to truth, magic happens.”
    ~ How true.

    Liked by 1 person

  47. Lex Jones says:

    What an amazing experience! I thoroughly enjoyed your post. Not only was it perfectly said, it brings to light the damage labels do to us all…on both sides. I recall my second day on the job in a long-term hospital for patients with MR/MI. I coordinatedhuman resources for the nursing department and a young woman walked in to the office and sat in a chair. I thought she had an appointment with the director. I assumed she was one of the 10 nurses coming in that day to interview. She was well-groomed and well-spoken. We talked for a bit and I offered her some coffee and a doughnut. She wanted neither. As we sat there and chatted, a team of security officers ran into the office and swiftly took her away. She was a patient. And apparently she’d had a bad morning and threw a large piece of furniture at one of the staff.
    From that day forward, she would always stop and speak when she saw me. She wouldn’t talk or make eye contact with anyone else in my area, but she always took a minute to speak to me. And I always reciprocated. It taught me a lesson early on. Lose the titles. Lose the labels. Love and respect your fellow man. Magic does happen.

    Liked by 1 person

  48. […] via The lunatic is on the grass: A schizophrenic golfer unwittingly removes stigma of mental health — … […]

    Liked by 1 person

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