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Sunday, October 22, 2006

Buddhism and Mental Health. Vote!!

I have a great opportunity to ask a question of a Buddhist psychologist/author in an online interview with Tricycle Buddhist Review and Zooleo. The subject is the link between Buddhism and psychology. The deal is that people post a question and others can "boost" it (basically vote for it) and the most popular questions will get answered in the online interview.

Here is my question:

"What does Buddhism say about "mental illness" and why does it occur in people? Is it considered a biological condition as it is in the West or not?

And is it seen as an issue of burning off negative karma?"

So this is where you come in. :)
I need people to go to this forum and "boost" (vote) my post (you'll see a number to the right of my question with the words "boost it" under the number. Just click on the "boost it wording" after you register and it should count the vote!). I've really been searching for the Buddhist perspective to "mental illness" and this is a great opportunity to get some of those answers. You don't have to do much but register with this online Buddhist forum. It's not a difficult registration.

All you have to do is enter in a username a password and an email address
and then you vote! My question is #21. I would really, really appreciate this help.

If you don't feel that you can do it
or don't want to then NO WORRIES.

However, if you CAN and DO have a few minutes then that'd be AWWWWWEEEESSSSOOOOMMMMMEEEE!!!!


It looks like right now my question is at the top of the question list so that should help you find it. :O)

Thanks again for your help. Let me know if you have any questions or if my directions seem confusing. :) And if you have any insight to this question I'd love to hear it!


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garnet david said...

James, I boosted your question, which is an interesting one. I think a lot of mental illness are caused by spiritual or mental balance issues. I'm curious to see what Mark will say.

"James" said...


Thank-you kindly for the boost. I will be sure to post here what I learn from this interview. I agree that finding a balance between spirituality, the mind and the physical body are a big part of dealing with brain disorders.

Balance in all things!!!

~I bow to the Buddha within you friend.

Tim said...

You got it James!!!!!

"James" said...


Thanks so much!!!

derek said...

i gave ya a boost ; )

BiPolar Guy said...

let us know the answer

"James" said...



BiPolar Guy:

I'll be sure to post the answer here in a post. :) Thanks for the vote!!

kathy said...

Great questions and I'm looking forward to reading the answers.
I too boosted your question.

Thank you :)

alison koh said...

wow! seems you're tops, i gave you an extra boost anyhoo. :)

"James" said...


Thank-you very much.


Thanks for the boost!! Only 4 days to go!!! :)

dragonflyfilly said...

well...i'm not sure, in some cases i think it is lack of spirituality, in others it is supposed to be because of a genetic predisposition...and of course there is the mental illness caused by the ingestion of certain drugs...but who really knows...if we knew the cause we would be closer to a cure...then one could get philosophical about it and say that we choose that "condition" to learn what we have to learn down here in Earth School....I really don't know!

i will give the link a "boost"....

cheers for now,

dragonflyfilly said...

kool bipolar guy; i love your flipping pic!

dragonflyfilly said...

i boosted under another name other than dragonflyfilly - i wonder if you can guess what it is *james* [???]

dragonflyfilly said...

i thought you said you were #21, but now the question i read and boosted as 21 is now 18 ???? help!!!

"James" said...

PJ: with all things there are many connections and reasons.

"James" said...

PJ: with all things there are many connections and reasons. I think that I can guess the name you posted under. ;)

dragonflyfilly said...

heh heh !, yes, i think you can!

Sean said...

Your question is number one! It is a good topic to explore, and I believe Buddhists are very well equipped to approach it.

My personal belief is that mental illness has two causes: physical and experiential.

Experiential illness comes about as the result of being abused, usually as a child growing up -- people who are around negative energy and bad and selfish treatment are likely to have anger toward the world. We should learn from this: it shows in a very real, powerful way that what we do has reverberations through other people through the generations, and out into the world. So we must be kind, and loving, and compassionate, for those behaviors are good and are of the foundation of life.

The causes of physical mental illness are just that: physical. Some of us have neurotransmitters that don't quite work as they should, or in the ratios they should exist in. There are other problems too, I'm sure; I'm no expert. But I believe these are physical illnesses that should be healed through physical means. If you're sick, you take care of yourself.

I don't believe in karma through rebirth. I believe that karma is the very real experience of being kind or evil to people, and watching how it affects them and our own hearts.

Take care, everyone :-)

"James" said...


I absolutely agree with you that there are two aspects to mental illness.

And i agree about karma. It is more a cause and effect principle rather then a "punishment."

sy said...

Depression only man makes unhealthy. So we must come out from it otherwise it may create many health problems. Always keep our mind peacefully.

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michele said...

HI there, was your question answered?

If so would you kindly send it to

Many thanks!

shiny said...

According to me we can gain mental health not only with Buddhism.It's up on the human personality.with mental health we can improve our breathing, heart rate, blood pressure,skin,conductance etc.and all change suddenly.

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maria said...

The sociological perspective is utilized to analyze the nature, development, identification, and treatment of mental illness. The convergence of sociology, psychiatry, and psychology is examined within the context of contemporary treatment systems.

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