Wisdom, Madness and Folly, The Making of a Psychiatrist

R.D. Laing



p 2 to 5.

Psychiatry has many functions. Some of these are the same as those of other fields of Western medicine, but psychiatry is unique in several respects. It is the only branch of medicine that treats people physically in the absence of any known physical pathology.

It is the only branch of medicine that ‘treats’ conduct, alone, in the absence of symptoms and signs of illness of the usual kind. It is the only branch of medicine that treats people against their will, in any way it likes, if it deems it necessary. It is the only branch of medicine that imprisons patients, if judged necessary.

What I seemed to be engaged in was a concerted effort to stop undesired states of mind and conduct, and to keep undesired people in such undesired states of mind and conduct away from people outside, who did not want them around.


R.D. Laing

RD Laing Tavistock


…some people become insufferable to others. No one they know wants to live with them. They are not breaking the law, but they arouse in those around them such urgent feelings of pity, worry, fear, disgust, anger, exasperation, concern, that something has to be done.

…The first, decisive, crunch decision is should this person, or that person, be taken away, locked up, and observed for a while? Then comes the second decision: should this person be kept in for a further period…maybe ‘treated’?


Different – alieneugenics in a different dress


…everywhere in the developed world there is a psychiatric ward somewhere…to send those who ‘have to be locked up’ for observation…then for a repertoire of possibilities…drugs, straitjackets, padded cells, tube feeds, injections, electroshocks, comas, lobotomies…reconditioning of one kind or another.

…Mental hospitals and psychiatric units admit, routinely, every day of the week, people who are sent ‘in’ for non-criminal conduct, but for conduct which their nearest and dearest relatives, friends, colleagues and neighbors find insufferable.




pointing the finger at 2         Oh - the Horror! - Silent film star         pointing the finger at



…It is our only way to keep people out of the company that can’t stand them. The staff of those places to which such unpopular people are sent are paid minimal wages to take care of them.

…prisons for people whom the world out there can’t stand and wants secluded and excluded for non-criminal offences.


The Unpopular


Anti-Social label

shunning and bullying

Sociopath label


Religious Shunning

religious shunning

Scientology version

suppressive person forehead stamp

Catholic version

anathema stamp

Internet version – Social Engineering


and outcast

sockpuppets on the internet


The Abyss of Difference

the unbridgeable gulf

abyss crack

p. 6

…Psychiatrists never tire of telling us that there is an unbridgeable gulf between some people and the rest of us.

Karl Jaspers called it an abyss of difference.

Manfred Blueler calls it a total difference. No human bond can span it.

Some people are ‘strange, puzzling, inconceivable, uncanny, incapable of empathy, sinister, frightening, it is impossible to approach them as equals‘, in Manfred Bleulers words.

Both he and Jaspers are talking about schizophrenics – over one in ten of us according to orthodox psychiatry.

strange, puzzling,

Do I look strange

inconceivable, uncanny


telepathy - just talkin really - diagram

incapable of empathy, sinister, frightening – to them, that is.

suppressive person forehead stamp


impossible to approach them as equals


There could be another reason for that.



Carl Rogers tells me that Martin Buber told him once that schizophrenics are not capable of an I-Thou relationship. That sums up the psychiatric position, and that is the position from which I dissent.

It is simply not a generalization I can make to match my own personal experience of such people.

Psychiatrists say I am kidding myself, or that I am one of them anyway, or that I am trying to make out that these people do not need treatment.

priests-salute_-_shades_of_nazi_germany Dr. Joseph Goebbels - Nuremberg Nazi Rally

…How do ‘we’ treat ‘them’? The Nazi regime in Germany in the late thirties took this doctrine to its logical conclusion. They should not be allowed to breed, and there was no point, really, in keeping them alive. They started their own cleaning and tidying up of Germany by killing 50,000 mental-hospital patients until they stopped under protest from the Churches and others.


How do ‘we’ treat ‘them’?

With some love-bombing

Preparing Prisoner for Lobotomy


WWII camps - bodies stacked in pits


hubbards wall of fire - h-bomb OT III


But there was no general outcry against the theory and practice. They then switched the same exterminating teams over to the Jews and the gypsies.


silence is not always golden

you are now silenced

silence of our friends


The attribution to the other of an incapacity to form a human bond was and is the basis for the diagnosis of schizophrenia.

…He or she is cut off (schizophrenic in a descriptive sense) and this is because he or she is suffering from a mental illness, namely schizophrenia, in the causal sense.

Cut off?

Or simply not a follower.



…The sense of a human bond with that patient may well be absent in the psychiatrist who diagnoses the patient as incapable of having a bond with anyone. Many psychiatrists have become very angry with me for pointing this out.

People don’t like pompous asses jailers psychiatrists?

Who woulda thunk it.

Psychiatrist in Nuts questioning Barbara StreisandBarbra Streisand in the movie “Nuts”


…I agree with the anti-psychiatric thesis that by and large psychiatry functions to exclude and repress those elements society wants excluded and repressed.

Awfully close to what sociopaths do…


repressWho’s really the sociopaths around here?


p 9


…Thus society expects psychiatry to perform to very special functions. To lock certain people up; and to stop and, if possible, change certain states of mind and types of conduct in the name of curing mental illness.



Within two years of carrying out my duties as a clinical psychiatrist, I came to the painful realization that I would not like to be treated the way my own patients had to be treated. I would not like to be locked up in a psychiatric ward under observation. I could not believe that the drugs, the comas, the electric shocks I was expected to prescribe and administer were the great recent advances in psychiatry I was trained to believe they were.

I knew what a psychiatrist like me was supposed to conclude about my patient’s state of mind if he were to tell me my treatment was destroying him. But I agreed with them.

Olivia de Havilland undergoing "Hydrotherapy" in the movie "The Snake Pit"

Olivia de Havilland undergoing “Hydrotherapy” in the movie “The Snake Pit”

snake oil salesman


p. 10

[psychiatry]…given a two-fold mandate.

First, to keep such persons excluded from the ordinary outside world for as long as ordinary company out there cannot abide them.

The second mandate is to stop, if possible, to change, if possible, their conduct and states of mind from undesirable to desirable.

…If all goes routinely, as it routinely does, they are not asked to answer to anyone but themselves. It is their job to make all the diagnoses they make.

These diagnoses give the psychiatrist more power over the diagnosed than a judge has over a prisoner he condemns to prison.


“We judge him damned and with the Devil…”

excommunication_-_we_judge_him_damned_and_with_the_devil– from the movie Beckett

In court…psychiatric opinions are taken into serious consideration but not necessarily adopted. Yet out of court, these same psychiatrists, with the same opinions, are invested with more power over persons whom only they say are to be patients or not than magistrates or judges over any accused. I was frightened by the power invested in me as a psychiatrist and by the way I was expected to use it.

Even more, I was frightened by the mind behind a lot of psychiatric theory and practice. I can best indicate what I mean by showing it in action.

False Gods.

Ra_and_co playing god

ra choosing

ra weapon for changing minds Hand_device

ra stargate - how dare you question me

Electro-shock ‘therapy’

one-flew-over-the-cuckoos-nest electroshock

The next generation – Magnetic seizure ‘therapy’



p 11, 12

Kirkegaard’s The Concept of Dread is…one of the most profound theological texts of the lat 200 years. It was reviewed in the American Journal of Psychiatry (Volume 101, p. 839) in 1944 by Abraham Myerson.

He wrote:

This book is interesting to the psychiatrist mainly because it inadvertently presents strong evidence that the writer is a psychiatric case himself and yet he has created quite an impression as a significant writer.

He offers us ‘two representative samples of the style of the author’ which ‘adequately demonstrate that his book is a schizoid and certainly utterly incomprehensible presentation by a mind which is quite deviate‘.

“If sin is dealt with in psychology, the mood becomes persistence of observation, the dauntlessness of the spy, not the ardent flight of seriousness away from and out of sin…sin becomes a state. But sin is not a state. As state (de potentia) it is not, whereas de actu or in actu it is and is again. The mood of psychology would be antipathetic curiosity, but the correct mood is the stouthearted opposition of seriousness.”


“How sin came into the world every man understands by himself alone; if he would learn it from another, he epso ipso misunderstands it The only science which can do a little is psychology, which nevertheless concedes that it does not, that it can and will not, explain more. If any science would explain it, everything would be brought to confusion. That the man of science ought to forget himself is perfectly true, but for this reason it is so fortunate that sin is not a scientific problem, and therefore the man of science is no more obliged than is any speculator to forget how sin came into the world. If he would do that, if he would magnanimously forget himself, he, with his zeal to explain humanity as a whole, becomes just as ridiculous as the privy counsellor who sacrificed himself to such a degree in leaving his visiting cards on To, Dick and Harry, that in doing so he finally forgot his own name.”

R.D. Laing writes:

These passages are as clear as crystal to me. I am in full accord with them.

To Myerson, spokesman for mainstream clinical psychiatry, they are schizoid and certainly incomprehensible productions from a mind that is quite deviant.

I realized with some dread that I was, from this psychiatric point of view, on the other and wrong side of that great divide that psychiatrists of this ilk are forever telling us exists.

Note: For those unfamiliar with who Abraham Myerson, or rather, what a nutcase he is – please see my articles:

In the second article, it details the connections of Dr. Myerson with the Eugenics Sterilization Committee, supported by the Vineland Training School of New Jersey – an infamous Eugenics hotbed. Several of the personnel there were mentored by British slavemasters from the originating point of Eugenics, which was England. One of the mentors protegee’s in England, also fostered the birth of the Tavistock Institute, dedicated to social engineering. A couple of the main personnel at Vineland were working with the British to test people for their “fitness”, and also helped to found both Stanford and Duke University. A name-changing OSS agent named Anthony Mitrano (naming himself after british spymaster William Melville’s pseudonym) – was not only working at Vineland, plus his thesis was about Pavlovian behavior modification and how it ‘worked’, he also had written a transparent, sickly sweet, letter of affirmation for Myerson’s efforts to justify sterilization of those deemed inferior.

The first thing Mitrano/Morgan did in his letter, was to start right out with classic British/Catholic propaganda positioning tactics – positioning anyone who sees the Eugenics movement for the danger that it was, was having an alarmist attitude – ergo it was a veiled “you’re crazy”, “You’re not reacting right”.

It’s important to note that this is exactly what Myerson is doing in regards Kirkegaard, that R.D. Laing documented. He’s calling the guy schizoid and deviant, because basically, he is nailing the psycho-fuck psychiatrists to the wall for their insane behavior.

The first article linked to above, covers Myerson’s continued insane efforts to control humanity. In particular, it focuses on his articles in medical journals where he (along with others) is attempting to promote the benefits of electro-shock therapy, when it had first come to the U.S. Electro-shock therapy was first ‘developed’ in the Catholic capital, indeed in one of their very own colleges, in Rome, by Professor of Psychiatry Ugo Cerletti. It went from there to England and then Germany and then on to the U.S. So beware those who try to have you believe that it started in Germany, no. These kinds of insanely violent and invasive therapies, have one source backing them throughout history, and only one. The Nesilim Catholic and British slavemasters. The Catholics, the priests, were drilling holes in people’s heads and giving them powerful drugs to induce convulsion, both as a barnum-and-bailey stage routine of “visits from god” (in the case of convulsions) and to remove “demons” and “evil spirits” from people (in the case of drilling holes in their heads).

So, it’s not much of a surprise to see one of them backing yet another torture method portrayed as a”cure” for the devils within one, for people that refuse to conform to their ideas of ‘proper’ and ‘on the path of righteousness’.

In his book, R.D. Laing directly (and accurately) quotes one of Myerson’s, this-has-gotta-go-down-in-history, all time, stupendously stupid statements:

I think it may be true that these people have for the time being at any rate more intelligence than they can handle and that the reduction of intelligence is an important factor in the curative process. I say this without cynicism.

The fact is that some of the very best cures that one gets are in those individuals whom one reduces almost to amentia.

*amentia = mental retardation

[…] In these cases and for the time being something happens to the brain which interferes with its function sufficiently so that mood becomes altered in the proper direction.

– Abraham Myerson comment in Discussion section immediately following an article by Barrera (S.E., N.D.C. Lewis, B.L. Pacella, and L.B. Kalinowsky: Brain Changes associated with electrically Induced Seizures: A Study in the Macacus Rhesus. Transactions of the American Neurological Association, Volume 68, June 1942, p. 39.

see our PDF of these comments

Note: this reference is almost universally cited incorrectly, an error that appears to have begun with the Church of Scientology through one of it’s anti-psychiatry front groups – CCHR. It is most often cited as “discussion following…Franklin G. Ebaugh et al., “Fatalities Following Electric Convulsive Therapy: A Report of 2 Cases with Autopsy Findings,” – that is incorrect.
That particular article doesn’t even start until p. 107 of this volume, whereas the relevant article and comment section are almost 100 pages earlier.


In a nutshell, these pictures well demonstrate the preferred ‘changed state’ and ‘proper direction’ of mood, that Myerson prefers to see such deviant people reduced to.

Jack Nicholson in the movie One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest

one-flew-over-the-cuckoos-nest electroshock

nurse ratchid starting the electroshock therapy



is the “temporary” state that is wanted.

Amentia – Myerson
Extinguished personality – Lowenbach
Annihilation – Cerletti

This is what psychiatry (and its Roman Catholic predecessors) called “cured“.

jack nicholson lobotomy

jack nicholson lobotomy2


In some of the other articles of this period, one sees over and over, that, as part of the “proof” that the person is cured, there will invariably be statements like what Myerson said, as well as two other interesting and oft repeated points.

  • societal interest
  • has a job

Put another way?

A good slave.


Said as drily as possible, one wonders if there also is a list of ‘approved’ jobs.

I think it’s clear to me now why that particular point is often leveled as an attack point even in modern times.

It’s very biblical, as in Roman Catholic biblical.

You do realize, that a large part of what Kirkegaard was trashing the core concepts of – aka sin – was a direct reference to Christianity and its offspring Judaism. And that is even more interesting why Myerson had such an utter cow over Kirkegaard ‘making that connection’, so to speak.

This is not a connection these people want clearly viewed by the general public-at-large. Because, well, it raises some very, very nasty questions, with even nastier answers.

If you think I’m kidding about the Roman Catholic view, I’m not.

Let me call your attention to some key points of Catholic catechism.

First, in reducing someone in power and intelligence to a drooling state physically and amentia mentally, these psychos are doing quite literally God’s work.

This little discussion of 2 Corinthians 7-10 ought to serve to enlighten you.

In the Bible, St. Paul is struggling with personal sin, in 2 Corinthians 12:7-10:

“And to keep me from being too elated by the abundance of revelations, a thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to harass me, to keep me from being too elated. Three times I besought the Lord about this, that it should leave me;  but he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” I will all the more gladly boast of my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.  For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities; for when I am weak, then I am strong.”

From the above statement of Paul, we see that God gives each one us sufficient grace to overcome sin, even when it seems like we are struggling with overcoming sin.  And when we are the weakest, that is when we are the strongest, because that’s when God’s power is made perfect in us.  How many people, when things get so bad in their lives, fall down on their knees in tears and ask God to fix things?  A lot, and that is exactly what God means when he says “my power is made perfect in weakness.” The acknowledgment of God as our loving Father over our own strength and power is the beginning of our relationship with God, and the beginning of the end of our pride. The prideful and strong who are always in charge of their affairs never do this, so God can’t work in them as powerfully as someone who is humble and acknowledges God in their distress.


Fall to your knees in tears, now that’s the thing, that’s the state to be in –  versus being prideful and strong, and in charge of one’s life yourself.

Do you really get what a horrifying concept that is trying to promote?

Take this statement by God (through Paul through whoever the frack really wrote this) – my power is made perfect in weakness.

So, in what state is this nebulous God’s power then, when others are strong in themselves?

God’s power

in the face of strength of self in others

is ergo:


Imperfect and Weak.


Sounds accurate to me, and very much more of a perfect description of a pathetic slavemaster, than a God.

Take this statement by Paul: I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities

Ah, see!

It’s ok to let (or even manufacture) hardships, persecutions and calamities in the world, because, you see, it is only when people are brought to their knees that then “god” can work on them.

So, regarding these coveted calamities and hardships and persecutions, what sorts of things would then be ok – and indeed we find the Catholic Church complicit with the British slavemasters – in the name of “there must be weakness and distress” before God can do his work?








These are what this “god” (and the very real men-behind-the-curtain) need in order to even vaguely look good!

Not just need, they depend on them for their very lives.

Wizard-of-oz_for I am a vengeful fodReference noted in image taken from United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website.



Until you strip away the false power, and what is left is a little old man.



See how psychiatry and its deceptive and destructive practices fit in here perfectly? It’s almost as if psychiatry is actually far more of a religion, than it is a science.

Coming back to that “pridefullness and strength” and in charge of one’s own affairs bit – you know, where God can’t be “powerful” unless those are broken – I’d like to show you some early psychiatrists statements along these same lines. I think you’ll be amazed how they follow right in line with these religious (and wholly lacking in science) teachings.

*The following quotes are taken from One Hundred Years of Psychiatry by Emil Kraepelin. I found the English translation archived at the Internet Archive where you can read it for free.

a “breaking of the will” or a penetration into the will of the patient, was a necessary part of any complete cure.Autenreith

make them obedient, orderly and calmHorn

gave him such strict control over her that she submitted blindly to his instructions.Heinroth

they must immediately submit to whatever is required of them, that the doctor’s will is for them a strict and unchangeable law. After they have had this notion impressed upon them vividly and frequently in different ways, then they are no more likely to rebel against his will than against the laws of nature.Pinel

one of the most effective means of treating insanity was to subdue the patient and to tame him.

The main requirement for effecting a cure… was the ability of the doctor… to compel obedience.

To subjugate the patient, the doctor had first to deprive him of every prop and make him feel absolutely helpless. That is why he had to be taken from his home and his accustomed surroundings and brought under lugubrious and frightful circumstances …to a strange asylum.Kraepelin

It restrains the patient. It shocks him by making him aware of his confinement and causes him to suspect or realize the fruitlessness of any attempt to stir up troubles.Horn

Through strong, painful impressions we get the patient’s attention, accustom him to unconditional obedience. The will of his superior must be such a firm, immutable law for him that he will no more resist it that he would rebel against the elements.Reil

He [Schneider] expressed the hope, along with Horn, that continuous suffering would enable the patient “to regain consciousness of his true self.  – Schneider and Horn

the subjective personality is figuratively destroyed and that the psyche …no longer recognizes its own personality. …sustained nausea prevents the mental patient from becoming immersed in his own thoughts. – Schneider

he reasoned that isolation, hunger, and defamation were important corrective measures. …Erhard had seen an asylum in which filthy patients were put atop posts. “This was effective, ” he said, “because they were terrified by this disgrace.”Reil

Humiliate the proud patient and make him acutely aware of his worthlessness and dependency Vering

For repressing arrogance or eliminating excessive pride– Esquirol

the doctor ought to seem like …a visible image of God… Thomas Willis.


Pretty horrifying, isn’t it.

Now that we know that people like Abraham Myerson, or Max Fink, who promote such barbaric and clearly unscientific solutions, we also can add to the mix that psychiatry is really about a religious conversion, which takes it even further away from the reality of anything resembling logic, sanity, and science.

Once again, let’s take up Jack Nicholson’s character in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, adding in the religious core tenets of psychiatry.

Now that his character has been ‘treated ‘ for his “pridefullness and strength” with electro-shock and a lobotomy –

jack nicholson lobotomy



Now he is no longer in control of his life.

Now he is humbled, weak, and incapable of arguing against his ‘superiors’.


Now he’s ‘ready for god‘.



You gettin’ the picture here?

Alright, so rounding back to what R.D. Laing said about Myersons’ critique of Kirkegaard as being a deviant –

I realized with some dread that I was, from this psychiatric point of view, on the other and wrong side of that great divide that psychiatrists of this ilk are for ever telling us exists.


The divide that is of their own making, the divide that they should be forever isolated apart in, the divide that needs no bridge, and should never have a bridge, for it is a gulf of delusionary ideas, petty jealousies, and malevolence.

Now you know where the idea of ‘advancing’ someone ‘up the bridge’ idea really comes from.

Scientology and Catholicism both try to ‘sell’ you that you need to walk across that bridge to ‘enlightenment’, you need to span that ‘gulf’, you need to go to their side, their vision of who you ‘really are’.

There is no reconciliation of ideas possible with such absolute wrongness, nor should there be.

Let them have their isolation, says me.

There is a true division, an abyss of difference, and they’re it –

By their own hand.



This is the real reason that my husband and I refer to such ‘bridges’, as bridge to nowhere

scientology - the bridge to nowhere

and even more accurately depicted in this next image –

a bridge straight to hell and eternal damnation for you

Which is their idea of a ‘heaven’.

bridge to horror and eternal damnation


That goes for Catholicism, and psychiatry too, you understand. They are pushing people towards damnation for their personal selves, 180 degrees the opposite of anything resembling actual enlightenment.

These people, the really nasty driving forces among them, comprise some of literally the worst, and very real, horror stories that I’ve ever heard of.

– – –

By Virginia McClaughry



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


5 senses, Historical Research, Let's talk About You, perceptions


, , , , , ,