karmic cause of schizophrenia

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Re: karmic cause of schizophrenia

Post by chownah » Sat Jul 02, 2011 2:46 pm

I'm not telling you to take medications or to not take them....it means nothing to me...I want you to decide for yourself....for you to decide for yourself you must first learn about the medications which are available and the effect they are likely to have. Also you must learn whether you will have the choice to stop the medications if you wish and which might be physically addictive and thus difficult to stop.

I urge you to not take a few people's experiences alone as being adequate for making such an important decision.....ask a doctor...or two...get a list of possible medications and study their effects and side effects and whether they are easy to stop or not. Develop as much expertise as you can on the subject. The fact is that new medications are being created regularly and from what I have heard the nightmare reactions which were common with the drugs used before are no longer typical with the drugs available today....but you must be the judge of that so get busy and starting finding out....maybe you will decide to not take any of them but it is best if you make that decision by knowing the facts and not relying on just rumors.

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Re: karmic cause of schizophrenia

Post by Modus.Ponens » Sat Jul 02, 2011 4:32 pm

WilsonBond wrote:
Think about geting medication
I will see a psychiatrist as soon as I get health insurance. My close relatives tell me not to take medication under any circumstances, because they've seen the long term effects of medication. Thanissaro Bhikkhu also specifically told me not to find a therapist that would medicate me (not for schizophrenia but for another issue), but to find one to help me deal with these issues without medication. There is this one family friend who has to stay in a mental ward for the rest of his life because the medication caused permanent brain damage. His parents regret ever having him put on medication. I'm glad the medication works for you, but I will try a different path for now until something really bad happens. Thanks for the warning. As for the staying in seclusion for 4 years part, I was under the impression that the Buddha praised seclusion and that was part of the practice.
I don't know what the other problem is so I cannot really give an opinion. Venerable Thanissaro is much, much wiser than me so I'm confident that he's giving good advice. But he's giving advice on this other problem, not your possible schizophrenia. But it's really strange these side efects that you talk about. I never heard of a medication so strong that would cause permanent brain damage. Anyway, I take risperidone which is a safe medication and fairly recent. With neuroleptics there's always the danger of neuroleptic malignant syndrome, but it's very rare.

Regarding the seclusion, seclusion is good if you are able to practice, which I wasn't. Seclusion without practice is just boredom and loneliness. And that's really the worst part of schizophrenia: to lose the ability to practice. Fortunately I was able to recover enough to practice a satisfactory amount of time, but there's no guarantee.

I second chownah's advice to get yourself informed on the various medications there are, and their side efects. With your doctor and online.
"He turns his mind away from those phenomena and, having done so, inclines his mind to the property of deathlessness: 'This is peace, this is exquisite — the resolution of all fabrications; the relinquishment of all acquisitions; the ending of craving; dispassion; cessation; Unbinding.' " - Jhana Sutta

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Re: karmic cause of schizophrenia

Post by rowyourboat » Sat Jul 02, 2011 11:57 pm

I wonder if anyone tried these methods on hallucinations or delusions:

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

with metta

With Metta

& Upekkha

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Re: karmic cause of schizophrenia

Post by RickF » Thu Mar 22, 2012 1:37 pm

As a person with this disease, who Googled this question, I found the posts interesting. Thank you to the person who asked the original question, and thank you to the persons who answered. As mentioned I think that seeking help and taking care of what is happening in this life now....(for "me" that means taking my meds, and seeing my psychiatrist, and therapist) is probably more important than why it happened. This is what I have to work with, and I am very blessed to have met the dharma in this lifetime and realize its help, even if I am ill. I have only been meditating daily, reading the Dharma, and practicing with a sanga for a little over a year. I believe that I am suffer less now that I am practicing, and trying to follow the precepts. "I" personally am very thankful for modern medicine. True I am not cured, but thankfully I don't have to be totally out of my mind, locked up, or homeless, and I think I am sick enough that that could of happened, it has happened to some of my friends. Sometimes when I think of the poor people who have or had no access to medicine (that may have been helpful) because they lived before, or its just not available....I consider it very sad. "I" only speak for myself. I have friends who tell me they don't find the medicines helpful. I think it is best if a person is healthy enough to make up their own mind. Unfortunately sometimes it "appears" in the news that someone commits a crime that "may" not of happened had they been on meds. Really only that person knows. And how many "normal" people commit crimes? The fact is the news story will propagate stigma, even though from what I have read, people with schizophrenia are more likely to be the victims of crime than the other way around. That all said "I" personally am grateful for my meds. I did not become ill due to illegal drug use in this life, my best guess "scientifically" genetics. Thank you for the spritual Buddhist perspective, that's why I Googled

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Re: karmic cause of schizophrenia

Post by tamdrin » Sat Jan 05, 2019 3:15 am

I also found this (my own post) by searching google for "Schizophrenia and Vajrayana buddhism", I had almost forgotten that I had made this thread some 8 years ago. Looking back I realize I was rude to Peter B, who actually, is someone who is probably very qualified to help me. He is a psychiatrist and has 30 years experience with vipassana.

Does Peter B still post here? I have sent him a private message and would be very keen on talking with him.

Looking back I can see how much my views have changed in regards to this phenomenon. I was very naïve and ignorant 8 years ago and have come around to realize the profound benefits of psychiatry and western approaches to the illness rather than my superstitious approach influenced by heavy reliance on Tibetan Buddhism.

Also, previously I denied that I was the one suffering from schizophrenia but now I am out in the open about it.


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Re: karmic cause of schizophrenia

Post by SarathW » Sat Jan 05, 2019 3:50 am

Please share your story here.
Did you cure your schizophrenia if so how?
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

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Re: karmic cause of schizophrenia

Post by tamdrin » Sat Jan 05, 2019 4:34 am

In most cases schizophrenia is, unfortunately, a lifelong illness. There are some cases where people have made recoveries and don't need medicine but as far as I understand the majority of people need medicine and therapy for life.

My own schizophrenia developed some 13 years ago. It started while I was on a Tibetan Buddhist retreat in 2006. I had planned to meditate for 100 days alone. I had done this before and had come through the experience. Two weeks into the retreat I started hearing the voices of my Lama's telling me to kill myself because I was going to go to a higher state after death. I believed in them and had a sort of suicide attempt. I eventually realized that something was wrong and got out of the retreat and went home. I went to the lama and asked him why he was telepathically communicating with me but he had no clue what I was talking about. My health gradually declined. I wasn't able to finish school and had to be hospitalized eventually. I spent time in a homeless shelter for the mentally ill. Things were really dark before I found the right medication. One of the symptoms of schizophrenia is that you don't know you have it and you think what you are fighting is real (that is before you get on the right medication). Once I got on the right medication my life straightened out and I have been able to keep up a minimum of spiritual practice. I spent time studying Tibetan language in India in Nepal, worked as an English teacher in Taiwan, and now have been living in Chiang Mai, Thailand for the last 4 years. I am moving away from my Tibetan Buddhist path, although I still do find some of its teachings helpful... there is much in it which is quite frankly highly dangerous for the mentally ill. Sometimes I don't know how I got (am getting ) through it.

Schizophrenia is the ultimate test. I have promised myself that I will at least get through this life no matter what may come. I have no choice. It is a very low life goal to have, to simply make it through life, but living in Thailand I can live a life where I don't have to do much. I also have the blessing of having supportive family and friends. This is necessary in maintaining some stability while fighting this disease.

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