A personal testimony
Note Bene: This formal repudiation was originally written on December 12, 2017 and serves as the preface for Psychomoralitics: The Soul-Deep Alternative to the Failed Mental Health Professions.
All of us, either ourselves, our family members, or our acquaintances, have received “diagnoses” and treatments from the mental health professions. Until now, and the advent of psychomoralitics, these professions were the only clinical option most people have had when dealing with serious psychomoral distress and its sometimes manifestation in disordered mental symptomology. This is because the mental health professions have been promoted, marketed, and subsidized to the hilt by the mental health system: a complex comprised of the State, the insurance and pharmaceutical industries, and their sanctioned mental health organizations. As a result, the mental health system and its professions have experienced an unprecedented exponential growth. Indeed, this juggernaut mental health system is nothing less than ubiquitous in today's culture, infiltrating everything from schools, to workplace, to churches, and even the sacrosanct realm of marriage and family.
But in spite of the unmatched financial success, growth, and dominance of the mental health professions, and though they occasionally and haphazardly accomplish good, they have conclusively been both a dismal failure and purveyor of harm. As per my own education in clinical psychology, I can note that many of the best and brightest in the mental health professions will at some time during their training despair of their discipline's efficacy. Some quit, and the best usually early on. But so too, many push doubts aside and allow themselves to get carried away by the treadmill of the mental health system, impelled by their own understandable desire for survival and success.
From the very beginning of my doctoral training, I too despaired of the efficacy of the mental health disciplines. But unlike most of my erstwhile colleagues, who for the most part went straight from an undergraduate major in psychology to graduate psychology, I serendipitously brought to my study a degree in philosophy and an advanced degree in theology, as well as an undergraduate education in the liberal arts and the Great Books of Western Civilization (plus two stints in the U.S. Marine Corps and ample life experience). The result being that I was able to doubly despair, not only seeing the hapless and ineffectual results of the mental health professions, but seeing as well the gravely deficient, and at times manifestly absurd, philosophical understanding of the human person found in the various personality theories, psychotherapies, and overall conceptualizations embedded in the mental health system.
But unlike those who, in the face of the evermore apparent quasi-quackery of the mental health professions, either quit or successfully denied and blindly coped with it, I was blessed with a third alternative. I was afforded nothing less than a vision; no, not a mystical vision, but a vision glorious and amazing nonetheless. It was a vision in black and white, letters upon paper. (Special note must be given to Josef Pieper's Living the Truth, which being read while moonlighting as a substitute teacher during an especially non-interactive high school class, produced the proverbial “ah-ha” moment.) It was a vision afforded by the world's most venerable philosophical understanding of the human person. So, providentially, from the beginning of my training I was able to vet my studies, and concurrently develop a conceptualization and practice according to the supremely validated and perennial philosophical anthropology of Western scholasticism; a scholasticism that finds its fullest expression in Thomism. Yet this conceptualization and practice, this psychomoralitics, with its timeless foundation and animating spirit, was nothing less than diametrically opposed to the conceptualization and practice—and yes, the animating spirit as well—of the mental health system.
So I worked undercover. While jumping through the hoops of an American Psychological Association doctoral program and hospital internship, and the subsequent training and examinations required for my licensing in many states, I continued to practice and develop psychomoralitics as per my duty to my therapants and to truth itself. During this time I produced scholarly works that presented psychomoralitics in a manner that I hoped would be somewhat palatable to the mental health system, so as to colonize, if not altogether reform, that system. But this attempt necessarily entailed compromise. Yes, psychomoralitics is psychology, but a true psychology that is actually “the study of the soul.” But psychomoralitics was not psychology as implicitly understood by the mental health system, a system that does not in fact or practice, even recognize the soul.
In the course of over a decade of psychomoralitic development and treatment it became undeniably and increasingly clear that the mental health system was not only utterly irreformable, but utterly corrupt as well. The mental health system is utterly irreformable because it has too much at stake in its dual agenda of advancing both a reductionistic dehumanizing anthropology and its political and financial bureaucratic power. Though hid under the false cover of benignity, this synergistic dual agenda of dehumanization and power comprises the mental health system's very raison d'etat.
The mental health system's reductionistic focus on mere manifestations of mentations or behaviors (thus the designation as “mental” or “behavioral” health) in effect eliminates that which transcends that symptomology. This reductionism eliminates not only that which psychomoralitics advances to be the cause of mal-being, ego-reactivity, and much disordered mental or behavioral symptomology, but renders obsolete the very essence of the human person. By reducing the person down to mere symptoms of mentation or behavior the mental health system renders that person non-transcendent, without sacrosanct and unfathomable depths, and thus a mere quantifiable entity that is confined within a false and brutalizing paradigm. In effect, the mental health paradigm renders the person manipulable, controllable, and ultimately enslavable. This has never been acceptable to me, nor to any other psychomoralitic practitioners; but nor should it be to anyone who claims to be a healer of the soul. Indeed, the ethical and moral obligations adhered to in psychomoralitics, and other healing disciplines, has been set in stone since time immemorial:
“I will follow that system of regimen which, according to my ability and judgment, I consider for the benefit of my patients, and abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous.” (Hippocratic Oath, 500 BC)
Intrinsic to the false and harmful mental health system's reductionistic conceptualization is a susceptibility to corruption. Ideas have consequences, and consequentially the mental health system has become corrupt to the core. The mental health system's rapid acquirement of bureaucratic power has shockingly resulted in its gaining of a total and violent coercive control5 over its professions, practitioners, and patients. In this the mental health system presents a prime example of a State and corporate empowered bureaucratic agency becoming fully weaponized against its very constituency.
The mental health system's false theoretical conceptualization and ensuing perverse ethos is now inextricably wed to an unbridled bureaucratic power. The mental health system has thus been rendered antithetical not only to psychomoralitics, but to the timeless noblesse oblige inherent in the sacrosanct duties a healer of the soul incurs in regards to the well-being and protection of those in his care. The thorough and irredeemable corruption of the mental health system (made salient in its unconscionably—but adamantly rejected—demands that my own practice be weaponized against my therapants), coupled with the full scientific development of psychomoralitics (with its proven and superlative efficacy), finally deemed it no longer ethically or clinically acceptable for the practice of psychomoralitics to be obfuscated under, nor even tacitly compliant to, the malignant gargantuan that is the mental health system.
As will be enunciated, the mental health system and its professions are a major cause of essential mal-being, ego-reactivity, and the enslavement of the human spirit, and thus in the long run, only exacerbate even the symptomatic mental disordering they purportedly treat. But in this, not only is psychomoralitics a separate discipline diametrically opposed conceptually to the mental health disciplines, but fortuitously it is the very anti-discipline—or more aptly the anti-dotal discipline—that remedies the iatrogenic ills caused by the mental health system and its professions.
Finally, note well that psychomoralitics (and herein is the source of its validity and efficacy) is strikingly not the work of any one person. Thus, I must render thanks to those that have collaborated in, and journeyed with me, in the formulation of psychomoralitics. Firstly, I thank the giants of perennial Western thought, as well as those subsequent scholarly keepers and renewers of that thought, who have provided psychomoralitics with its patrimony of philosophical and anthropological principles. Secondly, I thank those who have and are training with me as mentors and psychomoralists (all taken, not from the ranks of college psyche majors with good grades, but from the grounded and proven ranks of life); may their expertise and efficacy exceed mine. Thirdly, and most heartfelt, I thank the therapants that have graced my practice and provided such an edifying example of courageous openness to the unfathomable spectrum of reality, both in its piecing sorrows and sublime joys.