Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

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Prasutagus
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Prasutagus »

Mental illness is pretty diverse in its manifestations-- schizophrenia included.

This is really something that an individual needs to work out with the support of his or her lamas, mental health care team, and support network-- which should include at least some sangha members.

It's a little bit of a gloss to suggest that a schizophrenic person shouldn't practice vajrayana because their hallucinations will get tied up with the visionary aspect of the practice. That's certainly true for some. In other cases, like my schizophrenic friends, that wasn't the case. If that is the case, there are still many practices one could engage in.

-Prasutagus
Gyaltsen Tashi
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Gyaltsen Tashi »

Does it mean I don't have a perfect human rebirth with respect to Vajrayana?

Regards,
Gyaltsen Tashi
Prasutagus
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Prasutagus »

The purpose of the teachings on perfect human rebirth isn't to create two piles of people, one perfect, the other faulty, and to find our place in one of those piles. The purpose of the teachings on perfect human rebirth is to make the most benefit of the opportunities that we have. If you have an interest and aspiration to practice, you can practice.

That said, what you should practice and what is appropriate for you to practice is really something to talk with your lama about, and consult with your mental health care team about, and something you should be very kind and gentle with yourself about. I'm saying that not because you have schizophrenia (or so I'm assuming based on this thread), but because it's good counsel for everyone.
Gyaltsen Tashi wrote:Does it mean I don't have a perfect human rebirth with respect to Vajrayana?

Regards,
Gyaltsen Tashi
theanarchist
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by theanarchist »

Gyaltsen Tashi wrote:Does it mean I don't have a perfect human rebirth with respect to Vajrayana?

Regards,
Gyaltsen Tashi

Unless you have resolved this and are stable and able to meditate without those medication, I am afraid, yes. Same with me here.
theanarchist
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by theanarchist »

Prasutagus wrote:The purpose of the teachings on perfect human rebirth isn't to create two piles of people, one perfect, the other faulty,

Indeed. Only few people are able to fully use of these teachings for various reasons.
Gyaltsen Tashi
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Gyaltsen Tashi »

theanarchist wrote:
Particularly trying to visualise deities is not really a good idea when having a disease that usually comes with hallucinations and delusions and that is only stopped with chemical stuff that stunts the brain functions that facilitate these symptoms.

Vajrayana has all those stories of deities appearing to realized practitioners, giving them teachings etc. And you wouldn't be the first person with a tendency for hallucination and delusion to get a religious delusion with hallucinated "spiritual entities". I know of a case where deities started to appear to one such woman who told her to stop eating and not even the lama could convince her that this is BS and she is supposed to eat.

You might end up hallucinating deities and lamas and begin to think you are a tulku. I have had contact with several vajrayana groups and all of them had enough stories of people falling prey to spiritual delusions around vajrayana stuff.
I don't have auditory or visual hallucinations. I have had persecutory and grandious delusions. But as the saying goes "Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean they are not after me."

Regards,
Gyaltsen Tashi
emaho
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by emaho »

Gyaltsen Tashi wrote:Does it mean I don't have a perfect human rebirth with respect to Vajrayana?
You shouldn't let these problems disencourage you. What may seem like an eternity now will maybe turn out to be just a temporary crisis and in a couple of years looking back you're gonna laugh about it all. Really. Don't give up.
"I struggled with some demons, They were middle class and tame..." L. Cohen
Gyaltsen Tashi
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Gyaltsen Tashi »

Prasutagus wrote:
This is really something that an individual needs to work out with the support of his or her lamas, mental health care team, and support network-- which should include at least some sangha members.

-Prasutagus
Sadly, I don't have such support. I used to have a lama and a sangha, but due to some unhappiness, I am not welcome, and now going to other centres, I have fears of the same thing happening.

I don't have a mental health team. I only get to see a psychiatrist every 2 months for 5-10 min to get my prescription.

I don't have friends I meet regularly, who are committed to my welfare. I have only Facebook.

My mother and sister, my only immediate family are supportive though, and for that I ought to be grateful.

Regards,
Gyaltsen Tashi
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Kaore
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Kaore »

As long as you have a mind and the ability to live you can reach freedom from All. The ultimate goal. Awakening.
theanarchist
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by theanarchist »

Kaore wrote:As long as you have a mind and the ability to live you can reach freedom from All. The ultimate goal. Awakening.

Erm, dogs and cats and whales and elephants have a mind and live, and they can't reach liberation and awakening.
theanarchist
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by theanarchist »

Gyaltsen Tashi wrote:
Prasutagus wrote:
This is really something that an individual needs to work out with the support of his or her lamas, mental health care team, and support network-- which should include at least some sangha members.

-Prasutagus
Sadly, I don't have such support. I used to have a lama and a sangha, but due to some unhappiness, I am not welcome, and now going to other centres, I have fears of the same thing happening.

I don't have a mental health team. I only get to see a psychiatrist every 2 months for 5-10 min to get my prescription.

I don't have friends I meet regularly, who are committed to my welfare. I have only Facebook.

My mother and sister, my only immediate family are supportive though, and for that I ought to be grateful.

Regards,
Gyaltsen Tashi

Why don't you first see that you can improve your quality of life and mental health care before you begin to think about vajrayana? For exemple by doing psychotherapy, finding real life friends, hobbies etc?

Do you have a job?
Schrödinger’s Yidam
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Schrödinger’s Yidam »

It should be a given that the first thing anyone with a mental health problem should do is discontinue all recreational drug use immediately--including alcohol. If you use a 12 step program to do that, so much the better. It will sensitize you to spirituality in general and be nothing but an asset when you come back to practice Dharma.
1.The problem isn’t ‘ignorance’. The problem is the mind you have right now. (H.H. Karmapa XVII @NYC 2/4/18)
2. I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against lama abuse.
3. Student: Lama, I thought I might die but then I realized that the 3 Jewels would protect me.
Lama: Even If you had died the 3 Jewels would still have protected you. (DW post by Fortyeightvows)
Prasutagus
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Prasutagus »

This comment isn't specific to this thread, but to many of the threads I've stumbled upon on Dharma Wheel...

What's the deal with pulling people down? I have never seen so many threads wearing people down, trying to convince them that, no, actually, they can't practice, ... no, sorry, but they're practicing all wrong... no, sorry, but that really isn't the real/genuine/pure/true transmission. Back in the old country the stupidest most uneducated and ignorance dude would spend his life doing trillions of Om Manis, die with his mala moving and his prayer wheel turning, and people would come to touch their heads to his relics. Now we want to inform everyone how fracked their practice and study is.
KonchokZoepa
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by KonchokZoepa »

theanarchist wrote:
Kaore wrote:As long as you have a mind and the ability to live you can reach freedom from All. The ultimate goal. Awakening.

Erm, dogs and cats and whales and elephants have a mind and live, and they can't reach liberation and awakening.
derp derp.


oh so not all sentient beings can reach liberation? are you playing stupid? from your posts you are mostly bringing negative attitude to this thread.
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo
Pero
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Pero »

KonchokZoepa wrote:
theanarchist wrote:
Kaore wrote:As long as you have a mind and the ability to live you can reach freedom from All. The ultimate goal. Awakening.

Erm, dogs and cats and whales and elephants have a mind and live, and they can't reach liberation and awakening.
derp derp.


oh so not all sentient beings can reach liberation? are you playing stupid? from your posts you are mostly bringing negative attitude to this thread.
Well no idea about the rest but in this particular thing he is correct. Animals are one of the three lower births for a reason.
Although many individuals in this age appear to be merely indulging their worldly desires, one does not have the capacity to judge them, so it is best to train in pure vision.
- Shabkar
KonchokZoepa
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by KonchokZoepa »

what does that have to do with their buddha nature? if u say they cant reach liberation you are saying they dont have buddha nature.

there are many mantras they can hear that will basically liberate them, long namgyalma mantra will guarantee a rebirth in a heavenly realm where they can practice dharma and achieve liberation.
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo
theanarchist
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by theanarchist »

KonchokZoepa wrote:
oh so not all sentient beings can reach liberation?.

Nope. Unless a tantric master sends them to a pure land when they die.

Or do you see how a grasshopper or a hungry ghost can understand dharma concepts and meditate? You need a precious human birth to be able to practice dharma. All the non human realms are not suitable.
theanarchist
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Joined: Thu Dec 26, 2013 7:26 pm

Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by theanarchist »

KonchokZoepa wrote:what does that have to do with their buddha nature?.

Nothing. All sentient beings have buddha nature. That's what defines them as sentient beings. But that does not mean that any sentient being in any kind of reincarnation, from the hells up to the god realms can encounter, understand and practice dharma. In fact, in most they can't. That's why it's calles PRECIOUS human birth. Human, with all the faculties intact, in an era when a buddha has appeared and taught, the teaching is still present, one lives in a place where it's available, one has a character and attitude that doesn't stand against dharmic concepts etc.
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Adamantine
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Re: Can someone with schizophrenia practice?

Post by Adamantine »

I just want to draw people's attention to DW's Terms of Service that relates in a general way:
Members who are suffering a serious mental illness should seek diagnosis and treatment from a qualified medical professional within their community and those who are suffering from an acute phase of a mental illness, including intention to self harm and/or are suicidal should seek immediate assistance. http://www.befrienders.org/index.asp" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

~ Members are asked not to use Dharma Wheel as a platform to express intentions of self harm or suicide, the experience of voices or other hallucinations or other artefacts of acute mental illness.
~ When encountering a member suffering an acute episode of a mental illness, we should treat that member with compassion and refer that member to medical/emergency services within that person's community.
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
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