Hearing Voices

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posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 05:54 PM
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A Scary Phenomena



When someone says "I hear voices" the very first word which pops into your head is.... schizophrenia. That dreaded word, with it's dreaded 5 syllables. There's many good reasons to be afraid of voice hearing: when something happens inside of your mind without your consciously willing it, we feel we've lost control of ourselves. And hearing voices is the ultimate example of that. They come when they want, they say what they want, and the only thing you can really do is fight them or tolerate them.

Nevertheless, even though this phenomena is "strange", and for most people, disruptive, there is nothing intrinsically "diseased" about it.

The general consensus about the voices that voice hearers hear is that they are subconscious murmurings. They reflect unconscious thoughts about others, ourselves, the environment, or life in general. They are not "random", but follow the cue of emotional contents hovering beneath conscious awareness which the subconscious gives vocalization to. Seen in this light, how different, really, is a voice hearer from you or I (the non voice-hearers)? What comes to us as feelings, or stay latent in our unconscious as potential drives, passions, fears, phobias, is brought to the minds attention to the voice hearer. Although it is far more disruptive - a running commentary on whats going on in our external environment can range from annoying to tormenting - it is not a disease.

The term "disease", simply implies Dis-Ease. If our body is not functioning properly, its in a state of dis-ease. We say its diseased because our body is being threatened by some endogenous agent, be it cancer, measles or diabetes. But when we say mental dis-ease, I think we should make a distinction between functionality. The mind of a voice hearer is laden with multiple voices. Is this a "functional" problem? Yes. It's functionally different from normal minds. However, when talking about "functional" problems in terms of the mind, we more or less mean how does this person function in society? If this person cannot operate without a sense of dis-ease, then he is in fact, diseased. But if a voice hearer can control or even recruit the voices heard without it impacting their ability to lead a more or less normal life, are they diseased? I would say they aren't.

A major problem which our society needs to overcome is our stance towards voice-hearing. One doctor compared voice-hearers to homosexuals in the 1950's: they're an oppressed and demonized group. Just earlier I mentioned to my mother that the book that I am reading, Daniel B. Smiths' "Muses, Madmen and Prophets: voice hearing and the borders of sanity" was putting me a little on edge (it's not exactly easy stuff to read, although I am fascinated by it); because it was describing in such morbid detail the etiology and experience of schizophrenia. She replied "oh, those people scarrrreeee me". I thought to myself, how horrible is this. Its bad enough these people have to suffer, struggle and learn to live with these voices; the last thing they need is this knee-jerk paranoia about it.

Can we overcome our paranoia? Can we do our part to help these people live normal lives? Or will our scientific need to "diagnose and prescribe" treatment fail to take into account the anxiety and depression our judgmental beliefs about voice-hearing causes for the voice hearer?
edit on 21-7-2013 by Astrocyte because: (no reason given)




posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 06:16 PM
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Great observation. I think that the intensity of the voices, their message and how frequently the voices are being heard is important to be able to measure the severity of the "disease" or if it isn't a disease.

There are days when I haven't slept well or taken care of myself because of heavy work hours (38 hours with no sleep), too much caffeine or sugar, and I can feel nervous, jittery and hear things or see shadows, etc... That is different than a person that during a normal day can hear hundreds of voices in their head telling them to harm themselves or someone else.

I think that if a person is hearing a running commentary that is negative or destructive, it probably IS a disease that needs to be treated. If it's just a narrative thought process of their day to day life, they should still be treated but in a different way. At the end of the day, hearing voices isn't the norm and it probably will require some kind of treatment (by a doctor or by a counselor) so that the person can deal with it and the ramifications from society.
edit on 7/21/2013 by curlygirl because: (no reason given)
edit on 7/21/2013 by curlygirl because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 06:20 PM
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Very interesting. SnF. I have never met a person that hears voice that functioned "normal". I had gathered that the reason is that person was always told they were sick and were now now drugs to "fix" their issue. Where to you think the voice come from? What do you think concerning induced voice hearing from the consumption of Entheogens?



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 06:30 PM
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the pope hears god and speaks back to him
can we drug him
.



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 06:31 PM
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reply to post by geobro
 


Seconded.
2nd



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 07:12 PM
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reply to post by curlygirl
 





If it's just a narrative thought process of their day to day life, they should still be treated but in a different way. At the end of the day, hearing voices isn't the norm and it probably will require some kind of treatment (by a doctor or by a counselor) so that the person can deal with it and the ramifications from society.


A big part of the problem is our mistaken assumptions about people who hear voices.

Are the violent? Do they kill people? Statistics show that a voice-hearer is no more likely to commit a violent crime than anyone else.

The real problem is the setting they find themselves in. Hearing voices can be unsettling in itself. But, if the voice hearer is surrounded by supporters and people who care about them, they'll feel significantly less anxiety and depression about it. This is what ultimately matters. Thought disorder (a basic feature of schizophrenia) is a result of the horrendous levels of anxiety that the voices cause for the voice hearer.

Fact is, our present system is more concerned about separating these people from us - which in effect dehumanizes them - than doing whatever we can to help assuage their levels of anxiety about their situation.

So, the functionality definition I gave before has two aspects: hearing voices is functionally different. Hearing voices yet being able to function and contribute to society is functionally adaptive, and therefore healthy.

Treatment options should depend on the person in question. Not all voice-hearers want to be pumped up with tranquilizing anti-psychotics that have worse effects on the mind then the voices themselves. Another treatment option which is gaining adherents is cognitive therapy. The idea is to help the individual cope and live with the voices.

Perhaps it'll help by explaining the affect anxiety and fear can have. When you are experiencing anxiety and fear, the voices become much more malevolent. Remember, they reflect opinions and feelings we already have. So a pivotal aspect of therapy is to help the person better situate themselves toward the voices. Our current system which "diagnoses and prescribes" does the exact opposite. It makes the individual feel powerless and afraid of the voices; which in turn empowers the voices and the anxiety, fear and depression that they will cause; which in turn will force many to take mind-numbing medications.

The obvious way to circumvent this vicious circle of death is to help the individual better understand their voices. once they do this, once their anxiety levels diminish and they have a "control" over it, the thought disorder (if they deal with it), the delusions, the mania or depression, or whatever other symptoms they experience, will also diminish.

One can hear voices and still be socially well-adapted. Plenty of people already do this - but they're also deathly afraid to admit to their voice hearing lest they be labelled "insane" by doctors and society.

Obviously, we shouldn't end our research to figure out what is going wrong in the voice hearers brain to cause these voices. But till then, there is a more humane approach to helping these people, and a lot of his has to do with how we - society - understands them.
edit on 21-7-2013 by Astrocyte because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 07:25 PM
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Originally posted by turboneon
I had gathered that the reason is that person was always told they were sick and were now now drugs to "fix" their issue. Where to you think the voice come from?


I'm convinced that the voices are simply dark entities messing with people.

The drugs alter the victims vibration so they are no longer "in tune" with them, so then the voices stop.



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 08:10 PM
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reply to post by NuclearPaul
 


What if the voices say or suggest nothing negative?



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 08:16 PM
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Originally posted by NuclearPaul

I'm convinced that the voices are simply dark entities messing with people.



I don't know about the dark entities aspect. During plenty of my hijinks while younger, I've heard a voice ask me, "Are you sure you want to do this? Maybe you should think it through first."

It's saved my butt a lot of grief/injury over the years.



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 10:51 PM
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I will give an opinion:

The ability to hear voices seems to be a trait in an individual who understands the logic behind the so-called malicious intentions, thus the mind is able to form these voices (this however, entertains the idea that the mind produces the voices by itself), yet it is a mystery to me why a malicious intent would exist. Sure, there may be a triggering emotion...but I have yet to understand why the words of voices would ever be presented to the person conscious of them. What I do understand is that the individual who hears the voices obviously has a strong will not to take orders since the logic driving any of the voice's intent is present along with the words of the voice (meaning the emotions connect with the free-will, creating more motivation to act)...and this is just assuming that the voice heard is coherent and demanding; there could be circumstances where the voices are indiscernible, or even just coming off in an emotionally provocative way (terrifying, or annoying for example) without having to form complete sentences.

- - -

Yes, ostracizing or isolating these affected individuals may have that effect of dehumanization. The emotions resulting from that effect can lead to more of the dis-ease but it is not guaranteed that it will happen. I would say that such a reaction depends upon the priorities the dis-eased is conscious about. With great enough focus, I suppose, on a task, the voices may lose influence.

- - -

Treatments which numb the prescribed the individual of the dis-ease...should be followed up with a supportive program which teaches the individual what life should concerned with, thereby...what am I saying, I'm not a doctor.
But if you're going to distract somebody from their disease you better make sure that they forget completely, overcome the disease, or simply do not fall back into any sort of patterns that would lead to the disease.

- - -
My opinion on admitting one is hearing voices:

It does not have to be admitted to anybody (doctors, counselors, etc.) other than one's self. It just has to be made clear what the situation is (to be understood in depth is the goal, I suppose), and the diseased people will usually go to someone who is assumed to be able to cope with or help with the situation (this presumes the intervening people have a knowing/understanding of the disease). What a person seeks there, is for the strong-enough-will to be able to go through the remedy (which may simply be an understanding of the disease...); and, perhaps believing that they themselves lack the strong-enough-will, they turn to others.

- - -
(to NuclearPaul's post)

Was going to write something else but I decided what I've said is enough input. What I say is all opinion based on how I see the world, how I've experienced life.



posted on Jul, 21 2013 @ 10:59 PM
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reply to post by Astrocyte
 


Thanks for this top-quality ATS thread. They are far and few between, but they are still around! Major respect for bringing an intriguing idea to the table and presenting it in a pleasant, coherent manner.

I'm with you. Not all voices are signs of mental illness or "demonic influence."

And some do occasionally hear voices and continue to function in society without impairment. This alone blows that whole supposition of mental disease out the window if you ask me.

I personally have heard voices at times. It's mostly when I'm very calm or in a meditative state. At first I thought I was going insane, but then I realized they're more akin to these "subconscious murmurs" you mentioned. Furthermore, I realized these murmurs were totally benevolent. Usually they'd just drop some wisdom on me that is relevant to my current mood or situation.

There have even been times where this "inner voice" has lead me away from various dangerous situations.

Mental disease? Probably, sometimes.

Subconscious murmurs? Probably, sometimes.

Harmless internal wisdom/intuition from an unknown source that we don't fully understand? Probably, sometimes.

It's really a shame that most people become stigmatized for this, as I don't believe every case is an example of crippling mental disorder or demonic influence etc.

My "voices" have done nothing but help me walk the straight path. But I'm still not going to tell ANYBODY about them!

edit on 21-7-2013 by NarcolepticBuddha because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 22 2013 @ 12:35 AM
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reply to post by NarcolepticBuddha
 


Just before you fall asleep, if you pay attention, you can hear voices in your head. Everyone goes through this "twilight" state which precedes full blown unconsciousness every night. Do you panic when you hear the conversations? Of course not. Sometimes, I might even pay attention in this state, hovering somewhere between wakefulness and sleep, and find amusement in the sheer inanity of what my subconscious is talking about.

Some psychologists think passivity is a precondition for voice hearing. Most voice hearers are not very consciously in tune with themselves or their environment. Of course, this doesn't apply to all voice-hearers, but most. And as you just demonstrated, being in a tired, trance-like or meditative state facilitates voice hearing.




It's really a shame that most people become stigmatized for this, as I don't believe every case is an example of crippling mental disorder or demonic influence etc.


I remember back in high school how much I hated walking from Bathurst station in Toronto to a highschool for basketball practice. The walk in between went right by "queen street sanitarium" where I would meet 5 or 6 six schizophrenics busily talking to themselves along the way.

I remember how disturbed I was by these people. They made me scared; I felt maybe one of them would lash out at me, so I always tried to walk as far away as I passed by. But now, I can't reflect on those memories without a little bit of shame and regret. It was so ignorant! Of course, perhaps its an instinct to respond this way. But we need to do a better job informing people about the nature and reality of this condition; schizophrenics do not murder people anymore than non-schizophrenics. They do not commit more crimes. They are, in short, severely disabled people ostracized by a society which can't bear to look at them because they embody such intense spiritual suffering.

Maybe one day Dr. Oz or Dr. Phil can do a show to better inform the public about these statistics, and overall, about the nature of this condition.
edit on 22-7-2013 by Astrocyte because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 22 2013 @ 12:50 AM
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reply to post by 1Learner
 





But if you're going to distract somebody from their disease you better make sure that they forget completely, overcome the disease, or simply do not fall back into any sort of patterns that would lead to the disease.


The voice hearing isn't the disease though. Symptoms of disease are anxiety, depression, mania, thought disorder, delusions, an other comorbidities of schizophrenia; but hearing voices in itself is completely reconcilable with a socially adaptive attitude. If the person can navigate life with the voices, he'll be fine.

Anyone who has ever dealt with an emotional problem understands this basic conundrum. OCD, or Schizophrenia, all deal with this same dynamism. If you try to resist the obsession, or the voices, they become louder and stronger. Schizophrenic voices are largely regulated by emotional reaction; if you react calmly, patiently, and tolerantly, they will be benevolent, quieter and will occur less often. As mention, OCD follows this same pathology. If you situate yourself towards your obsession with a "plan" to outdo it, you will merely pull yourself deeper into it. The trick, both with voice hearing, and overcoming an obsession, is to create the conditions which will allow yourself to function regardless of the voices or the thoughts of obsession.
edit on 22-7-2013 by Astrocyte because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 22 2013 @ 12:53 AM
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reply to post by NuclearPaul
 


The drugs aren't even designed to deal with schizophrenia. All they do is block primary serotonin receptors; the effect is to not only drawn out the hearing of voices, but to make you groggy, tired, dazed and disoriented.

I'd rather live with voices than deal with such drugs, if you ask me.



posted on Jul, 22 2013 @ 02:07 AM
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ok hearing voices is scary.
Especially if they are gay-bashers (like DinoCrisis) but you need to seek out a past-life regression therapist who can release any spirits that are attached.

Darryl Forests
who got rid on 10 spirit attachments





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