24.2.08

Psychiatry, Law, and Demons

The depopulation of the willful universe, dare I say the genocide of the spirits, has cut a deep wound in the tomes of history. The spirits, once cooperative in this fallen world, whether for good or ill, have been reduced to mere metaphors or even psychoses. And all because, it seems, they threatened our power, our authority. Not only has humanity sought power through the insatiable accumulation of knowledge to control and order the natural world, but it has sought power by reducing the sphere of agents competitive in that natural world. The planets no longer have their own force, but are comprised a force "f" determined elsewise beyond will. We've taken our law of science, created for by and through humans, in our finitude, and imbued it with universal authority.

Those beings who cannot be recognized by the court of science are condemned to the abyss, the margins of human consciousness. And so, when they make their presence felt, they do so with the vengeance of the most truly offended sort; as what is more offensive than to have one's very existence scorned? They command human minds to the most indulgent excesses, the most neurotic neuroses. Our frontline soldiers, the psychiatrists (who seem more to tryst with the soul than to iasthai) prescribe weapons tested on mice. They claim these weapons "scientific," somehow more in accordance with the laws of nature than a therapeutic approach. And their plan of action: [drug] [inhibits/increases/reduces] the [production/reuptake/removal] of [neurotransmitter] in the [pre/post] synaptic site. What exactly this means, well that's brain chemistry my dear, so I suggest you keep that stupid smile on your face and run along with the rest of the crowd. We've got just the medicine for those negative nancies among you.

By allowing the scientist this pretension, of causative agency in respect to the soul's health, we're allowed the singularity of rational, human agency. There mustn't be others forces at work, merely the disinterested processes of scientific law. Only human rationality can bend this law to a particular will, and only human rationality can effectively operate agency. Human rationality apprehends the law and is thereby able to adjust its actions in accordance with it. The world itself is left deaf and dumb.

Of course, this understanding of the world stands against any traditional understanding of law. For in order for law to operate there need be, not just orders of conformation, but bodies which must therein conform. As conformation is a process, these bodies require an impetus to conform. We might tautologically suggest that attraction lies in the emptiness of the orders and the fullness of the bodies, such that the bodies desire determination by order and the orders desire fulfillment by body. We are still left the necessity for agency, for how might a body desire determination without consent to that desire, rational or not? That human bodies exhibit such will is confirmed by mental revelation, but that other bodies exhibit such will is a logical necessity of the system we circumscribed above. Whether we assign this will to a unity beyond or to the bodies themselves is a matter of perspective. For in order to reconcile ourselves with the plurality of willing bodies evident in the world, we need recourse to transcendent divinity as such; but, at the existential level, we must admit that such a plurality of will does effect itself in effecting the fulfillment of what we've taken to calling the laws of nature.

To relate this discussion back to its starting point, we're drawn to the aphorism that molecules and communities of molecules, including but not limited to neurotransmitters, are bodies and therefore require some agency to fulfill the orders assigned them by law. And so we attest, in accordance with the Christian tradition of thought and reason, to the possibility of real demonic influence on our psyches. That we fight these demons with what may as well be other demons (which we understand all the lesser) is an insult to both science and reason. That psychiatry cares no longer for the soul, as it does for the well adjusted consumer, the ultimate product, gives us pause. For who is left to be saved once the soul has been suborned to the system? And what love is to be found in a world where there is no will to love, no one to be loved.

3 comments:

Travis Logan said...

Why not just wave the magic wand and - BAM! - Transubstantiated Prozac!

Tom said...

Dude, the answer is obvious: just take a chill pill.

david said...

While I can't say that transubstantiated prozac would fly in orthodox circles, I think the door is open for the blessing of such drugs.

I'd be interested to know if priests in the field carry out the practice in either a folksy or official capacity.

I also wonder what the closest parallel would be to such a movement--the blessing of weapons, exorcism, or faith healing.