What is mental health?

Any ideas?

Here is what Wikipedia has to say:

Mental health

Mental health is the level of psychologicalwell-being or an absence of mental illness. It is the state of someone who is “functioning at a satisfactory level of emotional and behavioral adjustment”.[1] From the perspectives of positive psychology or of holism, mental health may include an individual’s ability to enjoy life, and to create a balance between life activities and efforts to achieve psychological resilience.[2] According to the World Health Organization (WHO), mental health includes “subjective well-being, perceived self-efficacy, autonomy, competence, inter-generational dependence, and self-actualization of one’s intellectual and emotional potential, among others.”[3] The WHO further states that the well-being of an individual is encompassed in the realization of their abilities, coping with normal stresses of life, productive work and contribution to their community.[4] Cultural differences, subjective assessments, and competing professional theories all affect how one defines “mental health”.[3][5]

I don’t know what you think,but as a philosopher this definition(s) of mental health appears to me achingly weak.

I think As philosophers we can do better than this and come up with something that is much more substantial.

Here’s another definition that is sufficient, and yet still philosophically kind of lacking.

These appear to me incredibly onesided.

For example:

Does my mental health rely upon the state of my brain?

Can I have a brain defect and still have mental health?

Can I be selfish, small minded, have no friends yet support myself while hating the world and have mental health?

Can I be happy, physically healthy, have only foods that come from health stores, love everyone, and not have mental health?

Is mental health something that only a some people have, while it’s ok if you don’t? For example, like only a few people have eels in thier fish aquarium?

Can I completely reject the medical model and still be mentally healthy?

Can I reject spirituality and be mentally healthy?

And I think this is pivotal:

Is there a difference between mental illness and mental disease?

That is, if we concede disease as a medical model category:

1. Involves an organ

2. Involves a defect of that organ

3. Involves symptoms

Author: landzek

My name is Lance Kair, a philosopher, a counselor and a musician who is being questioned.

2 thoughts on “What is mental health?”

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