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DSM-IV Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
"Only in psychiatry is the existence of physical disease determined by APA presidential proclamations, by committee decisions, and even, by a vote of the members of APA, not to mention the courts". - Peter Breggin, Toxic Psychiatry

"Some critics wonder if the multiplication of mental disorders has gone too far, with the realm of abnormal encroaching on areas that were once the province of individual choice, habit, eccentricity or lifestyle." - Erica Goode, "Sick, or Just Quirky?"

This section is included because it is referenced in other of our pages. The text below is taken directly from the Fourth Edition of the DSM-IV, copyright 1994, printed in 1997. Realize that psychiatry seems to make sense within it's own limited framework of nomenclature and definitions, but then again so do all mythologies, and the fault with psychiatry is not logical inconsistencies within the field, but severely flawed basic assumptions about man, his mind, his behavior, life, the environment and the relationships between these things. Psychiatric methods have been and continue to be harmful to Man and society. They cannot even clearly define basic concepts of their field such as "mental disorder" (see below).


Definition of Mental Disorder

Although this volume is titled the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, the term mental disorder unfortunately implies a distinction between "mental" disorders and "physical" disorders that is a reductionistic anachronism of mind/body dualism. A compelling literature documents that there is much "physical" in "mental" disorders and much "mental" in "physical" disorders. The problem raised by the term "mental" disorders has been much clearer than its solution, and, unfortunately, the term persists in the title of DSM-IV because we have not found an appropriate substitute.

A basic and very large error in psychiatry's fundamental approach to this subject is obvious in the above line, "the term mental disorder unfortunately implies a distinction between "mental" disorders and "physical" disorders that is a reductionistic anachronism of mind/body dualism." The attitude contained in psychiatry is that "we have advanced past the old and over simplistic notion of man having a mind and a body, and that these two things are different." Well yes, actually and factually the MIND and the BODY are TWO DIFFERENT THINGS, with observably different functions and following quite different laws. They do effect each other, and there are observable interrelations between the mind, body, and the environment, but they ARE fundamentally unique and different phenomena. Psychiatry would like us to believe "mental" disorders are all "physical" because this fits in nicely with their (ridiculous) theories of genetic and chemical-biophysiological causes for all "mental illness". This ideological slant has led to a very incomplete picture of Man and society.

Modern psychiatry ignores the entire realm of mind except as a category used in diagnosing "mental illness", doesn't directly address the mind in any attempt to cure or empower a mind, and instead observes and attempts to manipulate behavior and symptoms exclusively.

Yet, while ignoring the mind and refusing to address it directly, the modern subjects of psychiatry and psychology pretend to deal with "mental health", "mental hygiene", "mental illness" and "mental disorders". What can these terms possibly mean when the subject itself has abandoned the mind? There are no clear definitions of these terms anywhere in the related psychiatric literatures, because the truth is that these terms are surrounded by vagueness and based upon very faulty notions. Read on, they admit this themselves.

Moreover, although this manual provides a classification of mental disorders, it must be admitted that no definition adequately specifies precise boundaries for the concept of "mental disorder." (emphasis mine) The concept of mental disorder, like many other concepts in medicine and science, lacks a consistent operational definition that covers all situations. All medical conditions are defined on various levels of abstraction - for example, structural pathology (e.g., ulcerative colitis), symptom presentation (e.g., migraine), deviance from a physiological norm (e.g., hypertension), and etiology (e.g., pneumococcal pneumonia). Mental disorders have also been defined by a variety of concepts (e.g., distress, dyscontrol, disadvantage, disability, inflexibility, irrationality, syndromal pattern, etiology, and statistical deviation). Each is a useful indicator for a mental disorder, but none is equivalent to the concept, and different situations call for different definitions.

Despite these caveats, the definition of mental disorder that was included in DSM-III and DSM-III-R is presented here because it is as useful as any other available definition and has helped to guide decisions regarding which conditions on the boundary between normality and pathology should be included in DSM-IV. In DSM-IV, each of the mental disorders is conceptualized as a clinically significant behavioral or psychological syndrome or pattern that occurs in an individual and that is associated with present distress (e.g., a painful symptom) or disability (i.e., impairment in one or more important areas of functioning) or with a significantly increased risk of suffering death, pain, disability, or an important loss of freedom. In addition, this syndrome or pattern must not be merely an expectable and culturally sanctioned response to a particular event, for example, the death of a loved one. Whatever its original cause, it must currently be considered a manifestation of a behavioral, psychological, or biological dysfunction in the individual. Neither deviant behavior (e.g., political, religious, or sexual) nor conflicts that are primarily between the individual and society are mental disorders unless the deviance or conflict is a symptom of a dysfunction in the individual, as described above.

A common misconception is that a classification of mental disorders classifies people, when actually what are being classified are disorders that people have. For this reason, the text of DSM-IV (as did the text of DSM-III-R) avoids the use of such expressions as "a schizophrenic" or "an alcoholic" and instead uses the more accurate, but admittedly more cumbersome, "an individual with Schizophrenia" or "an individual with Alcohol Dependence." (more examples of psychiatrists playing with words, definitions, and meaning...)

A key point of the psychiatric view is that a legitimate "mental illness" requires underlying "behavioral, psychological, or biological dysfunction in the individual". According to The Concise Oxford Dictionary:

dysfunction - an abnormality or impairment of function.

So, there must be an abnormality or impairment of behavior, biology or psychology which manifests from the "mental illness" (which is never observed, and completely deduced... Mmmm?). Strangely, the entire field has never, not once, defined what "normal" or "ideal" functioning would mean in these areas! What would be an "ideal condition" for the psychological function known as attention? Memory? Imagination? Or intention? How might we strive to achieve these states? The raw truth is that the field has NEVER examined these things, much less with an interest in ascertaining how these operate, and how these things could be improved and strengthened - an obvious desirable goal for any group purporting to deal with "the mind". The subject of cars deals with cars and how to fix them. The subject of aviation deals with flying and how to make workable aircraft. Why doesn't psychology deal with minds and how to improve them? (answer below - keep reading)

Psychiatry, as with many other modern fields, attempts to attack and destroy the negative and unwanted conditions, assuming that doing so somewhere leaves a positive and desirable condition. This isn't so. Destroying the unwanted does not and is not the same thing as creating the positive.

Psychiatry uses mental concepts (ideas concerned with a "mind") largely as an excuse to label people with "mental illnesses". Examples: he has moderate attention dysfunction (i.e. his mind wanders); she has mild memory impairment (she has trouble recalling some things); he has fixated attention on sexual imaginings (i.e. fantasies). These things are used only to justify a diagnosis of illness. The area of the mind, as a thing in itself, has NEVER been studied or addressed, much less understood by modern psychiatry or psychology. This qualifies as real insanity - that a subject dealing with things "mental" has absolutely no understanding of the mind. This should seem unusual to anyone making a serious effort to understand all this.

Also, since what is "normal" and "ideal" is largely a matter of individual preference, interest, bias, or social agreements and standards, this places the entire subject in the precarious position of actually being quite arbitrary (and NOT a strict "science" at all).

"Normal" is the common denominator of average acceptable behavior. There is nothing desirable about it. Psychiatry has developed an entire "science" dependent upon labeling people "abnormal" or "impaired" because people deviate from their extremely biased concepts of what's "acceptable" and "normal". What are termed "mental disorders" and "illnesses" often envelope what more accurately fall under the umbrella of "individual differences", "personal uniqueness", "eccentricity" and "individuality". Unusual sometimes? Yes. Strange? Maybe. But a "mental illness"? No! For conditions which do have obviously harmful aspects to the person, the true cause lies in the "mind" which psychiatry pays no attention to as a thing to be addressed and corrected in itself. They say there is no value in doing this, but this is ONLY because they have failed completely at doing it (or never tried in the first place). Why listen to a failure?

Psychiatry would have us accept and believe we "have" depression or anxiety disorder like we "have" a wart, a pimple or a stomach ache. While depression, as one example of many, may have certain characteristics and even similar repeated behaviors, the actual state of depression is factually characterized by statements such as:

1) I "feel" despondent
2) My "thoughts" are always negative and I can't control them
3) I "want" to kill myself
4) Life has no value or meaning for me

Each of these has to do with the realm of emotion and thought, and almost exclusively. But depression, and hundreds of other supposed "mental disorders" are never dealt with addressing the realm of emotions or the mind. An explanation of behaviorism gives a good idea how modern "science" views Man. The mind is forsaken, and behavior is all.

Within the collegiate halls of modern psychiatry honest observation has given way instead to intellectual prostitution.

How so? The modern drug companies needed a "reason" to justify selling huge quantities of drugs to the public. Don't make it more complex than that. It is this simple. The theories, constructs, models and practices of modern psychiatry exist ONLY because the entire subject was energetically funded by the same people who were investing heavily in the drug companies. Are you a whore even if you don't know you're a whore? I think so. The field of psychiatry has sold out the truth about Man and his mind for money, prestige and power. The entire field prostitutes itself by promoting false ideas, contriving studies and results, and burdening modern society with various destructive practices. The lies are that it is done to "help", following "sincere and honest research", and representing the "highest modern degree of scientific results and understanding". Can a person be called a liar if they don't know they are lying? I guess not. People who say things which are not true, but think what they are saying is true, are either deluded or stupid. Psychiatry as a field displays both abundantly.

Ironically, the same psychological theories which led to modern psychiatry also established the modern educational system (which is a horrible failure). Is it any wonder psychiatry now exists and could only be able to exist within a society of people which has an overall reduced educational level, impaired observational abilities, and subverted intelligence - a situation which exists largely because of the defects and influence of the modern subject known as "educational psychology" - psychiatry's ideological cousin (based upon German experimental psychology)?

There is a term which used to be used among "heavy metal" enthusiasts. It was "poser". It means "one who poses, who pretends to be something he really isn't; one who acts and plays a part; dressing up in an attempt to be accepted by others despite the fact that they aren't truly part of the group; pretense; deception." The members of the psychiatric field have "General Poser Disorder" (my contribution to the DSM...). They pretend to be intelligent, sincere, desiring to help, and that their subject represents a valid way to understand and deal with Man and his mind. They and the subject are none of these things.

The real purpose of psychiatry is to 1) justify reasons for the public to purchase larger and larger quantities of drugs (and thereby support the drug companies), 2) numb the intellectual, emotional and observational abilities of the general population, and 3) social control (masquerading as "education" and "social services").

While you may not agree with the purpose of psychiatry as described above, an honest examination of the products of psychiatric methods and it's involvement in society can only lead to the conclusion that the above three things are happening whether they were planned and intended or not. It matters little if some mega-corporate-drug-company conspiracy is behind it all, or whether it's all largely unplanned and due to the general dullness and observational weakness of the members of the psychiatric field (and society). Personally, after doing much research, it seems to me that there is more planning, deception, and "conspiracy" to this entire expansion of psychiatry than not. The public has been sold a bad bill of goods, and led astray intentionally. But then again, I am probably suffering from "Primary Conspiratorial Perception Syndrome" (a mental disorder where one sees hidden plans, secret alliances, deception and conspiracies behind everything when these don't actually exist). The cure: drug me or cut out pieces of my brain to make the "illness" go away. Then I will "fit in" nicely with the psychiatrists and social planners notion of a "nice", "scientific", and "humane" society.

Read first hand for yourself and discover the true nature of psychiatry as a very complicated modern mythology masquerading as "true science". Where else would one find "coffee drinking" (292.9 Caffeine-Related Disorder) turned into a mental illness! Smoking is now classified as a mental illness also! You'll find it under category 305.10 Nicotine Dependence, and 292.0 Nicotine Withdrawal. Yes, smoking does have an addictive aspect. No, drug addiction is not a mental illness! It's simply drug addiction - the reaction physically and mentally to drug taking. "Withdrawal" is a physiological reaction to stopping the taking of a drug. It is not a mental illness either!

Of course, more mental illnesses in the catalog (DSM-IV) justifies more psychiatrists, increasing government involvement, funding, drugging of the public, electric shock, brain surgery and involuntary commitment. It truly is a self perpetuating leviathan. More "disorders" gives us more psychiatrists and increased funding of psychiatry, which then gives us more "disorders", and round and round it goes. Let's end the merry-go-round.

Say NO To Psychiatry!

Book Links

DSM-IV published by the American Psychiatric Association

They Say You're Crazy: How the World's Most Powerful Psychiatrists Decide Who's Normal by Paula J. Caplan, Ph.D.

Making Us Crazy: DSM: The Psychiatric Bible and the Creation of Mental Disorders by Herb Kutchins, Stuart A. Kirk

The Myth of Mental Illness: Foundations of a Theory of Personal Conduct by Thomas S. Szasz, M.D., Professor

Law, Liberty, and Psychiatry : An Inquiry into the Social Uses of Mental Health Practices by Thomas S. Szasz, M.D., Professor

DSM-IV Casebook: A Learning Companion to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders by Robert L. Spitzer, Miriam Gibbon, Andrew E. Skodol, Michael B. First

DSM-IV Made Easy: The Clinician's Guide to Diagnosis by James Morrison

Diagnostic Criteria from DSM-IV (4th Ed) by John S. McIntyre

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