Messages Off of Everything, Everywhere, for Everyone...


It is  double standards which cause double binds.

The sense that we are not being heard by psychiatrists (and others) is reality based.

It's not that they are physically deaf but rather psychologically 'deaf' to what we are saying. 


Look for the patterns. Something to help make sense of it.

       from Survivor













The Real Meaning

Just because you don't understand what I am saying it does not prove that what I am saying cannot be understood, nor does it prove that I don't understand it myself.

Just because you see or hear no meaning in what I tell you, it does not mean there is no meaning there to see and hear.

If your ego is blocking the view and buzzing loudly in your ears, you will remain blind and deaf to the truth that is right in front of your nose. That is this:

I am saying what I mean, and meaning what I say.

I understand something that you do not.

For as long as you can't or won't accept that, because you are too busy defending your own errors, you won't be able to see me, or hear me, as I really am.

Timeless Visions, Voices and New Meanings
Voices Throughout the Ages, Changing Perceptions,  Reactionary People, Trapped Targets, Group Relationships etc.

Rufus May, PhD and Voice Hearer

Embracing the dark voices within

Source in Title

By Chloe Hadjimatheou

BBC World Service

British psychologist, Rufus May is taking an unusual approach to schizophrenia by encouraging his patients not to battle against their voices - but to embrace them.

"The voice in my head says: 'You have to kill yourself because it's the only way you'll be free,'" explains a young woman.

I have been invited to a meeting of theHearing Voices Network, a group that encourages people to come together to share their experiences.

It is a bit like a meeting of Alcoholic Anonymous: people sit in a circle on plastic chairs; there is tea and biscuits.

The man chairing the meeting is Rufus May, a psychologist who has dedicated his career to helping people who hear voices.

"Did anyone ever ask you what the voices in your head were actually saying?" he asks a newcomer.

She has just recounted a story familiar to many of those here, of spending years in and out of mental institutions.

"The doctors told the other staff not to pay attention to me when I spoke about the voices; they said it would be playing into my delusions," she says.

Quirk of nature

Traditionally, the psychological community sees voices as a symptom of mental disorders such as schizophrenia or psychosis.

" Voices are symbolic messages about things that have happened in someone's life "

Rufus May

But Dr May belongs to a new school of thought that considers hearing voices as a naturally occurring human difference, such as left-handedness or homosexuality - something to be understood, not cured.

"Many people who hear voices never come to the attention of the mental health services," he explains.

"But when someone has a traumatic experience, the voices can turn against them, and become frightening."

Even then the voices are still worth listening to, according to Dr May.

"Voices are symbolic messages about things that have happened in someone's life and if we decode them, they are usually trying to tell us about an issue needs to be addressed," he says.

Dr May has been called a maverick and even labelled "dangerous" by the psychiatric community for the methods he uses to treat people who hear voices.

He is keen to show me how he works and so I am allowed to sit in on one of his therapy sessions.

His patient, Jackie (not her real name) hears two distinct voices, one male and one female.

Dr May ignores Jackie sitting opposite him and addresses the voices in her head directly, a little like he is invoking spirits at a seance.

"Is anybody there? Who wants to talk to me today?"

Before long Jackie responds, by repeating exactly what the voice in her head says.

"I hate you! You're always trying to mess things up by telling her she shouldn't kill herself," the voice tells him.

Not all the talk is aggressive, although it is often surreal.

Dr May asks the voices how they enjoyed a recent holiday Jackie took, and while one responds that she quite enjoyed it, the other claims he stayed at home.

Jackie seems drained afterwards but she is convinced she benefits from these sessions.

"I used to be afraid to leave the house but in the last few months I've reduced my medication and I feel much better," she tells me.

Harnessing the voices

One of the chairs of the Hearing Voices Network, Pete Bullimore, is testament to how effective these methods can be.

" I wouldn't want to get rid of my voices now, they're part of me "

Pete Bullimore

Pete heard his first voice aged seven, after suffering sexual abuse at the hands of a child minder.

"I heard a child's voice telling me to keep going, that everything would be OK. It was reassuring, a bit like an imaginary friend," he says.

But as the abuse went on the voices increased in number, eventually turning sinister and aggressive.

"They told me to set myself on fire, to slash myself and destroy myself, often 20 or 30 voices all shouting at me at once," he says.

By his mid-twenties Pete had lost his business, his family, his home, everything.

"The voices just encompassed my life; I curled up in a chair and didn't wash or eat.

"I was locked in a world of voices, paranoia and depression, and it was probably the most frightening time of my life," he says.

Pete spent more than a decade after that on heavy medication, but the voices never went away.

It was only when he came off the medication and met people who share his experience that he was able to stop being so afraid of the voices and actually start listening to them.

Life isn't easy. Pete still hears up to 40 voices at a time - it is worse when he is tired or stressed - making it difficult to concentrate and impossible to drive a car.

But he has rebuilt his life and has even been hearing a more positive voice recently, which is dictating a children's book to him.

He has already written several chapters, and there has been some interest from publishers.

"I wouldn't want to get rid of my voices now, they're part of me," he says.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2009/09/03 12:32:30 GMT

FAIR USE NOTICE: This may contain copyrighted ( ) material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available for educational purposes, to advance understanding of human rights, democracy, scientific, moral, ethical, and social justice issues, etc. It is believed that this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in Title 17 U.S.C. section 107 of the US Copyright Law. This material is distributed without profit.


Links to Articles on the Groupthink Phenomenon

Eight Main Symptoms of Groupthink
What is Groupthink?

Same Old Play; New Century

R.D. Laing
/Schizophrenia/Existentialism/Philosopher ...

Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide ©
Socialization to Killing
They [the SS doctors] did their work just as someone who goes to an office goes about his work. They were gentlemen who came and went, who supervised and were relaxed, sometimes smiling, sometimes joking, but never unhappy. They were witty if they felt like it. Personally I did not get the impression that they were much affected by what was going on — nor shocked. It went on for years. It was not just one day.
Auschwitz prisoner doctor

Robert Jay Lifton

Robert Jay Lifton, M.D. 

...In addition to cruel medical experiments, many Nazi doctors, as part of military units, were directly involved in killing. To reach that point, they underwent a sequence of socialization: first to the medical profession, always a self-protective guild; then to the military, where they adapted to the requirements of command; and finally to camps such as Auschwitz, where adaptation included assuming leadership roles in the existing death factory. The great majority of these doctors were ordinary people who had killed no one before joining murderous Nazi institutions. They were corruptible and certainly responsible for what they did, but they became murderers mainly in atrocity-producing settings. ..


International Cultic Studies


“A Bio Medical Mission was at the heart of Naziism”

“Socialization to Evil is all too easy...”

Robert Jay Lifton


When Patients See These Images, Their 'Interpretations' of What is Being Seen is Very Different to That of the 'Interpretations' of Others. These are Human Beings; Not Objects of Assessment, Interesting Cases, or 'Subjects'. If You Were Being Treated Like That, How Would YOU Feel? Happy?


The Entire Rosenhan Article, On Being Sane in  Insane Places, along with my own commentary relating it to my own experiences in the system, will soon be available from start to finish as a PDF file in this  section of this webpage.

The Pseudo-Patient Study



Last broadcast on Mon, 27 Jul 2009, 11:00 on BBC Radio 4.



Claudia Hammond revisits another classic psychology experiment, David Rosenhan's Pseudo-Patient Study, gaining access to his unpublished personal papers to discover how it changed our understanding of the human mind, and its impact 40 years on.

Between 1969 and 1972, the clinical psychologist David Rosenhan and seven other people - none of whom had a psychiatric diagnosis - got themselves admitted to 12 different psychiatric hospitals around the United States. They did this by presenting with a single symptom, saying that they heard a voice which said words such as 'empty', 'dull' and 'thud.' Once admitted, they acted completely normally. Nevertheless, they were kept in for periods of between 8 and 52 days. Seven of them were diagnosed with schizophrenia and were released as being 'in remission'; not one of them was judged to be sane.

After Rosenhan published On Being Sane in Insane Places in the journal Science in 1973, the psychiatric profession went on the defensive to protest its diagnostic competence. The study struck at the heart of their attempts to medicalise psychiatry and be accepted as proper doctors. Its impact was felt when the third edition of the profession's bible, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, came out in 1980: changes had been made which brought more rigour to the diagnostic process.

However, as Claudia discovers from Rosenhan's unpublished papers, for him the study was less an experiment of diagnostic efficacy than an anthropological survey of psychiatric wards. In a chapter of the book he never finished, she reads his poignant account of his own first admission, and his sense that 'minimal attention was paid to my presence, as if I hardly existed'.

Now suffering ill health and unable to speak, Rosenhan delegates his friends and colleagues professor of social psychology at Stanford University Lee Ross and clinical psychologist Florence Keller to speak to Claudia and show her the box containing previously unpublished material which throws new light on one of the most controversial and famous psychology experiments.



Recommended for Psychiatrists who believe that chemical imbalance explains everything and that the experience of psychosis is meaningless: here is a movie with "Message'' for you:

starring Kevin Spacey, as the psych patient who FEELS like an ''alien'' from another planet. I suggest you focus, not so much on the concrete details of his fascinating delusion but rather on the concepts behind the details. You just might learn something.


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