Cure and mental illness: of ‘cure’ in mental health

In the past years, political theorists, philosophers and historians have increasingly studied changing mental health diagnosis and placed them in the…

Cure and mental illness. A short reflection on the conceptual analysis of the neoliberal characterisation of ‘cure’ in mental health

— Nice.

I had never really thought about how political labels might be involved with mental health and its labeling. Does that mean I am a Neo liberal?

From reading his short essay, it makes me think about imposed categories. It looks like he is saying that a conservative is someone who defines themselves and figures that everyone else should define themselves, and that it is only natural to label oneself and to fit into categories. Whereas a Neo liberal is someone who is defined, who resists definition. It is as though this author is saying that a conservative understand the human of being as involved with a natural rights to define things, and this definition, this act of defining is what makes one human, but it also reflects the actual truth of the universe.

Then, by contrast, the Neo liberal understands the human being as that which is not defined, and problematizes any universe which is defined, locating the human being and it’s essential activity, namely freedom, as the natural activity which arises outside of being defined.

I feel like this precipitate of what the author is saying mirrors what he has described as relationships with the market economy.

Also, this points to the inherent irony involved in neoliberalism, whereas conservatism would find irony merely in particular situation, as defined, rather than irony as an essential part of the human being existing in the universe at all times. The irony being in this case that the differences in political situation is that one defined itself essentially, that the essence of being human is to define and to be defined — there is no irony in this position– while the other find irony everywhere in the fact that it is being defined and having to use terms which itself does not admit it is a part of, or only vicariously a part of.

Wow. So much going on there.

It is interesting that the author notes someone else who says that neoliberalism poses to be defined by acts rather than by definition, but then the author goes on to use that definition to make their arguments, as if by fiat arising ironically within an irony that it wishes to set aside. Similarly my comment as well.


As to a “cure” for mental health. I am not sure that I am a Neo liberal list, but that probably makes me a Neoliberal by default.

I think our new paradigm of mental health doesn’t really make distinctions between being mentally ill and being mentally healthy categorically. Rather, referring to an earlier post of mine and a paper that I am developing, The general ideal of mental health is conservative, and this conservatism sees the human arising naturally in a set of definitions that are universal, that arise naturally in the universe because that is the nature of being human in the universe, along with everything else. It thus sees and promotes as natural everything along a smooth scale of determination; that there is this human being who owns or has a psyche located in the brain, and this brain can manifest itself as a conscious agent in the world along the continuum of mental illness all the way to mentally healthy.

On the other hand, and this is more my view, for an example of the opposite, there is no good faith comparison between someone who is psychotic in general, what we could associate with the spectrum of psychosis (namely schizophrenia, bipolar one, schizoaffective are the names that we put along the spectrum) and someone who is anxious because they think they’re going to be fired from their job.

I feel that society as a general motion tends to lump together psychology, psychotherapy, mental illness, and mental health, into a continuum that is assumed while still working out the actuality of its parameters and distinctions.

I feel that is a weak and, actually, bad way of doing science (which is really what the whole history of psychology is based upon). 

I am not so sure that there is a smooth rule which extends through the human being and it’s arising in the world to place them on a continuum of mentally ill or mentally healthy. For someone that suffers from depression, say, the idea that they are mentally ill, To my mind, is saying something different than to say that someone who suffers from schizophrenia is mentally ill.

Recently, I watched a portion of this movie that a friend offered me called “Zietgiest: moving forward” (you can watch it free on YouTube). The first hour of the movie is basically a very compelling argument how the idea of a foundational cause called genetics, or biology, which is responsible for mental health or mental someone’s mental well-being is not correct an accurate way of portraying what is actually occurring in these situations. 

However, because I do see that certain types of psychosis, the kind of psychosis that lie on the more acute side and chronic side of affect and form, are indeed measurable to a physical diversion from what is “normal” brain appearance, as being “curable” in potential, which is to say that we can give people medication and they definitely stop being as acute, similarly to disease of diabetes, say. 

Yet, in the context of mental health, although we like to think that schizophrenia, psychosis and depression exist along a continuum of mental illness and mental health, the disease of depression does not respond in the same way as psychosis or schizophrenia does to approaching it from this medical model standpoint of curing a disease.

Indeed, we could talk about “curing” depression, but the way that we are going about it is based on a completely different set of protocols and notions then those used to address the disease of acute chronic psychosis.

Because of this actual distinction, because this is what is actually occurring despite what anyone would argue (for sure, though people will continue to argue that medication’s for depression are curing depression, the statistics that would back up that assertion are utterly miserable, while the statistics which go to say that certain medication’s can cure acute chronic psychosis, are much much better) I am not sure that using the word “cure” in all mental health contexts, as if to apply mental health to this assumed general standard, without actually looking at what the standard even is, is an irresponsible way of treating mental health.

There is a further issue that I have with the idea of “cure” as well as the idea of “mental health”, But that is outside of the topic of de Cock’s essay.x

Addiction as Materialist-Empiricist Ailment

Addiction is a conundrum. It’s manifestation is tragedy.

Now, the recognition of addiction has a primary disease of the brain I think is good, but question we need to ask is: what good is it?

I wonder what kind of money making opportunities open up because of this seemingly ethical win for the treatment of addiction.

Because, if we say that it is specifically a neurological disorder now all of a sudden we’ve given license and motivation for large abuses by pharmaceutical companies.

My question is: How did one who was afflicted by this brain disorder, one who completely destroyed her life, was basically on some sort of intoxicant for 27 years — how did this person with a physical brain manifestation of addiction who had been using substances for 27 years suddenly stop without any effort or medical or theoretical intervention at all? and be happy, never to worry or return to active addiction?

I think while recognition of its primary status as disease is important, the story is not over and is hardly recognized.

This reported and accepted definition of addiction does extend beyond mere substance-abuse, I think one of the other problems of this situation has to do with how addiction to substances might be conflated into categories of addiction of which it has no common basis. So what if someone is addicted to chocolate? They are so sad and depressed because they’re overweight because they eat chocolate brownies all day long. Have they burn all their bridges with their family members and friends? Have they started stealing from Department stores and gas stations? Perhaps they are both depressed and unhappy, but it could be a case of a sort of parallel evolution which have no common cause. And then also, one treatment of depression, while alleviating the problem of eating chocolate, may do little to stop one from shooting cocaine.

We still have many problems and questions to sort out, and I hope this recognition does not cloud the complexity of the issue, to reduce it to a unitive holistic category “neurology”.

For example, for the substance abuse part of it: what exactly are we after in trying to remedy addiction?

Are we only trying to get them to be able to hold a job? To be contributing socially? Do you just not use drugs? We might do that with a legal cocktail of drugs.

Or are we trying to get a comfortable, productive, and happy person who lives a filling life?

Would we be providing a disservice to an addict by telling them that they have a physical problem that can only be solves with the continuing use of other, more socially acceptable, substance?

I know plenty of substance abuse addicts who stay sober “just for today” who also have to constantly remind themselves to not use today, who are otherwise not very content nor happy accept that they are not using drugs.

Must we really shoot for the lowest possible outcome? Or can there be a variety of acceptable outcomes?  Do we enforce the lowest and hope for better?  Or do we present the best possible outcome –however that manifests, do not condemn any level of success short of using again.

As well, though, I know some addicts for whom using is no longer an issue. They do not think about it, they don’t worry about using; the problem is simply gone.

How does the neurological model explain that?

How do we inspire toward the best outcome, which is, complete recovery and no residual possibility of abusing drugs again, while also not shaming people who’s best is to just not use today?