surreal, dream, face, schizophrenia

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Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that affects how a person thinks, feels, and behaves. People with schizophrenia may experience hallucinations, delusions, disorganized speech or behaviour, and impaired cognitive ability. They may also have difficulty functioning in daily life, maintaining relationships, and coping with stress. Schizophrenia is not a split personality or a multiple personality disorder. It is a chronic condition that typically requires lifelong treatment and support.

Schizophrenia symptoms

People with schizophrenia may experience symptoms such as hallucinations, delusions, disorganized speech, abnormal motor behaviour, and negative symptoms. hallucinations are sensory perceptions that occur without any external stimulus, such as hearing voices or seeing things that are not there.

delusions are false beliefs that are not based on reality, such as believing that one is being controlled by aliens or that one has special powers. Disorganized speech is a way of talking that is incoherent, illogical, or nonsensical, such as switching topics randomly or making up words. Abnormal motor behaviour is a way of acting that is unusual, inappropriate, or bizarre, such as catatonia, agitation, or stereotypy.

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Negative symptoms are a lack of normal emotional and behavioural responses, such as reduced expression of emotions, lack of motivation, social withdrawal, and poor attention. Schizophrenia can cause significant impairment in various aspects of life, such as work, school, relationships, and self-care.

Treatments for schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is usually treated with a combination of medication and therapy, depending on the individual’s needs and preferences.

Medication for schizophrenia consists mainly of antipsychotic drugs, which can help reduce the intensity and frequency of psychotic symptoms. However, these drugs can also cause side effects such as weight gain, drowsiness, and movement disorders. Therefore, it is important to monitor the dosage and effectiveness of medication regularly with a doctor.

Therapy for schizophrenia can help a person cope with their symptoms, improve their self-esteem, and develop social skills. The most common type of therapy for schizophrenia is cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), which helps a person identify and challenge negative thoughts and behaviours that may contribute to their distress. Other types of therapy that may be helpful to include family therapy, arts therapy, and psychodynamic therapy.

Schizophrenia is a chronic condition that requires ongoing treatment and support. However, with proper care and management, many people with schizophrenia can lead fulfilling and productive lives.

Schizophrenia and transcendence therapy

Transcendence therapy is a form of psychotherapy that aims to help people with schizophrenia cope with their symptoms and improve their quality of life. It is based on the idea that schizophrenia is not a disorder of the brain, but a disorder of the self. Transcendence therapy helps people with schizophrenia reconnect with their true self, which is beyond the limitations and distortions of their ego. It uses various techniques, such as meditation, mindfulness, self-inquiry, and spiritual guidance, to help people with schizophrenia access their inner wisdom and peace. The therapy can help people with schizophrenia reduce their negative emotions, such as fear, anger, and guilt, and increase their positive emotions, such as joy, love, and gratitude.

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Transcendence therapy can also help people with schizophrenia enhance their social functioning, such as communication, relationships, and self-esteem. Transcendence therapy is not a substitute for medication or other treatments, but a complementary approach that can support the recovery process of people with schizophrenia.

Schizophrenia as a trigger for transcendence

Some people with schizophrenia may experience episodes of transcendence, which is a state of being or consciousness that goes beyond the ordinary or physical realm. Transcendence may involve feelings of bliss, unity, spiritual connection, or enlightenment. Transcendence may be triggered by various factors, such as meditation, prayer, music, art, nature, or drugs. However, transcendence is not the same as psychosis, which is a loss of contact with reality that involves delusions and hallucinations. psychosis may also involve feelings of paranoia, fear, confusion, or distress.

Transcendence may be beneficial for some people with schizophrenia, as it may provide them with a sense of meaning, purpose, or hope. However, transcendence may also be difficult for some people with schizophrenia, as it may interfere with their ability to function in daily life or seek appropriate treatment. Transcendence may also be confused with psychosis or mania by others who do not understand it.

Therefore, it is important for people with schizophrenia who experience transcendence to have a supportive and respectful environment where they can explore their experiences safely and constructively. It is also important for them to have access to professional help and guidance if they need it.

People who have used self-transcendence to overcome schizophrenia

self-transcendence is a personality trait that involves the expansion of personal boundaries, including, potentially, experiencing spiritual ideas such as considering oneself an integral part of the universe. Some studies have suggested that self-transcendence may be related to schizophrenia, especially the cognitive-perceptual component associated with magical thinking and unusual perceptions.

However, self-transcendence alone is not sufficient to cause schizophrenia, as other factors such as low self-directedness and low cooperativeness are also involved. Therefore, it is possible that some people who have used self-transcendence to overcome schizophrenia have also improved their self-directedness and cooperativeness, which are related to working memory and crystallized IQ. self-transcendence may also help them cope with the negative symptoms of schizophrenia, such as anhedonia and social withdrawal, by providing them with a sense of meaning and connection to a larger reality.

Measuring self-transcendence

self-transcendence can be measured by various scales, such as the Temperament and Character Inventory (TCI), the self-transcendence Scale (STS), and the Adult self-transcendence Inventory (ASTI). Some studies have suggested that people with schizophrenia have higher self-transcendence than their non-psychotic siblings or controls, but also lower self-directedness and cooperativeness . These personality traits may reflect a tendency to be asocial, schizotypal, and cognitively impaired. However, self-transcendence may also have positive aspects, such as a greater concern for the welfare of others and a more cosmic and transcendent vision of life. Therefore, some people with schizophrenia may benefit from interventions that enhance their self-transcendence in a healthy and adaptive way, such as mindfulness, meditation, or spiritual counselling. Some examples of people who have been helped overcome schizophrenia using self-transcendence are:

  • John Nash, a Nobel Prize-winning mathematician who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia and managed to recover without medication. He attributed his recovery to his intellectual pursuits and his faith in reason.
  • Elyn Saks, a law professor and mental health advocate who has chronic schizophrenia and has learned to cope with her symptoms through psychoanalysis, medication, and supportive relationships. She has written a memoir about her experience called The Center Cannot Hold: My Journey Through Madness.
  • Eleanor Longden, a psychologist and researcher who experienced auditory hallucinations since her adolescence and was diagnosed with schizophrenia. She rejected the label of mental illness and embraced her voices as meaningful aspects of her identity. She is now an activist for the Hearing Voices Movement and a TED speaker.
Schizophrenia theories

The psychological approach to schizophrenia assumes that the disorder is caused or influenced by psychological factors, such as cognitive distortions, emotional disturbances, interpersonal difficulties, and maladaptive coping strategies. Some of the main theories that underpin this approach are:

The cognitive model of schizophrenia

The cognitive model of schizophrenia, which proposes that schizophrenia results from faulty or irrational beliefs and interpretations of reality, such as delusions and hallucinations. According to this model, these beliefs and interpretations are maintained by cognitive biases, such as jumping to conclusions, overgeneralizing, and personalizing. The cognitive model also suggests that negative symptoms of schizophrenia, such as apathy and social withdrawal, are caused by low self-esteem and hopelessness.

The psychodynamic model of schizophrenia

The psychodynamic model of schizophrenia, which traces the origins of schizophrenia to early childhood experiences, especially those involving trauma, abuse, neglect, or dysfunctional family relationships. According to this model, schizophrenia represents a regression to a primitive state of mind, in which the ego is overwhelmed by the id and the superego. The psychodynamic model also emphasizes the role of defence mechanisms, such as projection, denial, and splitting, in coping with the unbearable anxiety and conflict generated by these experiences.

The social model of schizophrenia

The social model of schizophrenia, which focuses on the impact of environmental and social factors on the development and course of schizophrenia. According to this model, schizophrenia is influenced by stressors such as poverty, discrimination, isolation, stigma, and lack of social support. The social model also considers the role of cultural factors, such as beliefs, values, norms, and expectations, in shaping the expression and interpretation of schizophrenia symptoms.

The biomedical model of schizophrenia

The biomedical model of schizophrenia is an approach that considers schizophrenia as a brain disease caused by genetic factors, biochemical imbalances, or structural abnormalities. According to this model, schizophrenia can be diagnosed and treated using biological methods such as brain scans, blood tests, and psychotropic medications. The biomedical model does not consider the psychological or social factors that may influence the development or expression of schizophrenia.

The biopsychosocial model of schizophrenia

The biopsychosocial model of schizophrenia is a framework that considers the complex interactions of biological, psychological and social factors in the development and maintenance of schizophrenia. Biological factors include genetic vulnerability, brain abnormalities and neurotransmitter dysregulation. Psychological factors include cognitive deficits, emotional disturbances and coping styles. Social factors include family dynamics, stressors and social support. The biopsychosocial model of schizophrenia aims to provide a comprehensive and holistic understanding of the disorder and its treatment.

The trauma theory of schizophrenia

The trauma theory of schizophrenia proposes that traumatic experiences can trigger biological, psychological, and social factors that contribute to the onset and maintenance of schizophrenia. In this article, we will review the evidence for the trauma theory of schizophrenia and explore how it can inform a therapeutic model for the healing of schizophrenia. We will also integrate Jungian psychotherapy into this model, as well as transcendence theory, to suggest a method whereby Schizophrenics could make a full recovery.

Further reading

If you are interested in learning more about the relationship between schizophrenia and self-transcendence, here are some weblinks that provide more information:

mysticism and schizophrenia: A phenomenological exploration of the structure of consciousness in the schizophrenia spectrum disorders:

Temperament and character as schizophrenia-related endophenotypes in non-psychotic siblings:

Study suggests overdiagnosis of schizophrenia – ScienceDaily:

Magical thinking in individuals with high polygenic risk for schizophrenia but no non-affective psychoses—a general population study:

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