So I've thought to bring something up, that seems very difficult to find much conversation on. At least in the publishing world that is.
What impact, if any, do people believe that mental illness has upon esoteric practices?
Does the treatment of said illness through the use of medications have any effect, positive or negative, upon said practices?
Then again, how is it that that mental illness is often considered to be a gateway to the spiritual in some Native American cultures as well as other non-Western cultures?
I'm simply asking the questions here, and I welcome others to contribute their ideas and opinions to this discussion : )
I'm majoring in psychology and I find this question really interesting and I can give you some legitimate answers. We have the Israel Regardies of the world and then we have the Aleister Crowleys of the world. Esoteric practices like the qabalah etc. place emphasis on sanity. So I think it is important to keep a sound mind. In the psychology and psychiatric "world" we dont use the term "mental illness". The word Disorder is often used.
Things like hallucinations both auditory and visual are considered normal especially during ceremony or after a persons death. So a psychologist wouldn't check a box so to speak and say someone is schizo.
Interestingly enough there are positive symptoms and negative symptoms to schizophrenia!
In my opinion you need a sound mind in order to practice esoteric practices or atleast be looking to have a sound mind.
In psychology in general there are alot of fine lines and most of them are associated with time frames as well as circumstances. whether they be religious, adjustment or chronic.
If a person takes on a magical name for their high magic practices does that mean they have dissociative identity disorder? NOPE
or if someone hears a voice during ritual or prayer it doesn't imply a mental disorder. Esoteric practices walk a fine line the deeper they go especially when it comes to the development of psychic abilities.
When it comes to medication having an impact on esoteric practices....It all depends on the medication, dosage and if there doctor is really doing right by them. If the medication is un fact balancing the person out then things should go off without a hitch. BUT if that isnt the case I could see it having a negative impact on esoteric practices.
Abnormal psychology always differs from culture to culture. If one culture says it is normal to hear voices etc. then it is considered normal to the psychologist unless it is maladaptive to the person IE. hurting oneself.
I hope I was helpful
In 1999 I was diagnosed with BiPolar disorder. I suffered from a lot of mania for about 7 years and think it is how you access the sub conscious mind. In face I think the mind or human brain is the tree of life spoken of in the Bible. When outside the skull it looks just like a tree. Notice in the Bible many seek the MIND of Christ. And around his mind is a CROWN OF THORNS. Those thorns look an aweful lot like a freeze frame of the flaming sword spinning everywhich way to guard the way to the tree of life. And Christ says of himself I am the WAY, the truth and the LIFE. Jesus is also said to be the WORD in John 1 and the MIND is the temple of words. So much to say but gotta go.