Problematic symptoms can have many different causes. Differential diagnosis aids mental health experts like me*** to tell what you're suffering from.
(*** I have a Master's Degree in Social Work. I had field placements in a Community Mental Health Clinic and a Family Counseling Agency. The fact that I never worked in mental health after I graduated, or got any sort of licensing, shouldn't bother you. After all, this is the Internet -- where advice is free and always worth what you pay for it.)
Please consider the following ten statements carefully. Answer "yes" or "no" honestly, according to whether you agree or disagree.
(1) Someone who is vastly powerful and all-knowing communicates with me in mysterious ways.
(2) A being no one can see, but who I know exists, is aware of all of my thoughts and actions.
(3) I can be punished for my bad desires because someone can look into my mind and can't be blocked from doing this.
(4) Repeating certain words over and over pleases invisible forces; then they are more likely to give me what I want.
(5) I am very, very special to the ultimate power of the cosmos.
(6) Horrible things are going to happen to most other people when they die, but I'm going to be wonderfully rewarded by an invisible friend.
(7) Things are going to go well for me in this life if I follow certain rules exactly, never ever deviating from them no matter what.
(8) A non-material entity is trying to make me do bad things, so I always have to be ready to resist it.
(9) There's no way I can die, because a part of me has immortal super-powers.
(10) Other people who don't look at life the way I do are crazy, not me.
If you answered "yes" to one or more of these statements, don't feel alone: billions of people are just like you.
Help is available, whether you are religious or mentally ill. But we still don't know which you are.
A differential diagnosis can be made in this fashion. Attempt to heal yourself. If that fails, seek competent mental health treatment. Psychotherapy and medications can do wonders for thought disorders.
If you are still agreeing with all or some of the statements above, face reality: you're religious. Curing this disorder is going to be tough.
There are resources to help you. Books. Web sites. Proofs.
Don't accept your condition. Millions have been cured of delusional religiosity. You can be too.
Whew! I'm safe. All of my answers were "All of the above"...no, wait..."None of the above"...no, wait...what was the question? :D
Posted by: The Rambling Taoist | October 23, 2009 at 09:13 PM
Sure, I believed all these once upon a time. Not that I don't believe... but I am open. I really don't know Maybe I am getting cured.
Posted by: Deepak Kamat | February 08, 2010 at 11:00 PM