Tuesday, April 8, 2014
On Mental Resistance
A confession: a year ago I was recommended to a naturopath for stem cells. He was even near my house. But I never went to him because “naturopath” didn’t sit right with me. I was resistant; had mental reservations, and was prejudiced. And then a few weeks ago my old MD called me and re-recommended anew this same stem cell group. So I went just after going to Cancun for adipose tissue stem cells which did nothing and cost a fortune. So now it is 2 months into the new stem cells and for the first time in 45 years I talk and am out of pain. And this is a naturopath. What does this tell me? Stop with mental prejudices and resistance. It kept me from getting well for over a year.
And they were recommended by a "proper" medical doctor. The same is true of most medical doctors who cannot see and adopt the new. This is especially true for shrinks, several hundred thousand of them in America. After my 17 books, published in 26 countries, not one has come to us and wanted to know more about our work. Thousands of scientists downloaded my scientific articles in the World Congress of Psychiatry (It is considered one of the most downloaded pieces in their history), yet not one has contacted me.
I have found that most MDs stay in their groove and never seek out other alternatives. And the question is, why? One answer is, "I have the tools and will use it hither and yon, whenever I have a patient." This is true in psychiatry where "I have the shock machine, the favorite pills, the rigid adherent to one single therapy often with no basis in deep science". And what is wrong with that? It is therapist oriented, not the patient. It is he who has the power and the magical therapy; he is the holder of all the secrets. And we the patients remain powerless. Their "tool" is applied to all kinds of patients with no acknowledgement of individual differences.
So what is wrong? Doctors are doctors, without a broad perspective. They are rarely inclusive, mostly exclusive. My prejudice came from the fact that when I grew up there was nothing else. Our MD was the be-all and end-all of status. So therefore I began to suspect anyone who was not a "real" doctor.
On the other hand, the "natural" healers I have known, whom I call booga booga merchants, were not high on science. They were more loosey-goosey. Which is not a bad thing; they were open to everything; sometimes too open so that they lacked the discipline needed. Their open-mind became a sieve. And they used every vitamin in the book to treat patients. They purveyed received wisdom. And they too often say, that you have to believe to make it work; a bit of circular reasoning. So if you are slightly skeptical it won’t work and they say, aha!, you see. So that field attracts believers and people who through wish fulfillment think they are doing great and say they feel wonderful. Who can argue with that? Nevertheless, my current naturopath is curing me which 40 previous MD’s could not do over many decades. They lacked the essential curiosity and willingness to look at all kinds of solutions, not just their bag of tricks. So when I had surgery, and when it did not work the doctor washed his hands of my case. He never explored about what others might do for me. Why? Because they do not know what others in the field do, and mostly, they are not interested. This is what I call medical rigidity.
So here is what happens: as we mature the zeigeist and all its ideologies, perpetuated by the medical establishment spin a web of ideology inside us which then takes charge and directs our choices. We are now driven by inner forces. And I for one, avoided the one thing that could cure me. How tragic. What is even more tragic is that the Big Pharma and the health institutions prevent them from even using the term stem cells. So what cures is banned. Not because it can help but because they flouted the regulations of “real” science: double blind studies with plenty of subjects, and plenty of controls, done at reputable science centers, blah blah. The top guys don’t even want to look at the actual people who have been cured; they want statistics and proper procedures.
Following the rules is the summum bonum.
Why all this? Because they can keep a monopoly on the whole business of science. And extracted from their feelings, what they see and feel does not count.
In my field, no one who has spent 10 years on his studies is going to say, Oh yes, I get it. I will start to learn something new all over again. So it is not mental resistance so much as pocket resistance and energy resistance.
Let me diverge for a moment: today in science they reported that children who suffered emotional neglect were more likely to suffer stroke later in life. Now if those researchers were to read a bit more they might stumble on my work and the notion of enduring imprints that lead to stroke. They lack curiosity. They remain in a medical cloister about what is out there; about what more there is to learn. They lack a broad frame of reference, so what has been known for fifty years is ignored. This is typical; everyday there is a new study stating the obvious. Researchers could not feel what was right because they lost touch with that baby inside of them. They should guess that early neglect would lead to disaster, and they should say to themselves, “maybe I should follow up on that?”. First, you need to feel what is right. Living in your head for too long robs you of the innate sense; feeling.
Maybe it is not lack of curiosity? Maybe it is just indifference? No matter, science and humanity will suffer from it.
Review of "Beyond Belief"
This thought-provoking and important book shows how people are drawn toward dangerous beliefs.
“Belief can manifest itself in world-changing ways—and did, in some of history’s ugliest moments, from the rise of Adolf Hitler to the Jonestown mass suicide in 1979. Arthur Janov, a renowned psychologist who penned The Primal Scream, fearlessly tackles the subject of why and how strong believers willingly embrace even the most deranged leaders.
Beyond Belief begins with a lucid explanation of belief systems that, writes Janov, “are maps, something to help us navigate through life more effectively.” While belief systems are not presented as inherently bad, the author concentrates not just on why people adopt belief systems, but why “alienated individuals” in particular seek out “belief systems on the fringes.” The result is a book that is both illuminating and sobering. It explores, for example, how a strongly-held belief can lead radical Islamist jihadists to murder others in suicide acts. Janov writes, “I believe if people had more love in this life, they would not be so anxious to end it in favor of some imaginary existence.”
One of the most compelling aspects of Beyond Belief is the author’s liberal use of case studies, most of which are related in the first person by individuals whose lives were dramatically affected by their involvement in cults. These stories offer an exceptional perspective on the manner in which belief systems can take hold and shape one’s experiences. Joan’s tale, for instance, both engaging and disturbing, describes what it was like to join the Hare Krishnas. Even though she left the sect, observing that participants “are stunted in spiritual awareness,” Joan considers returning someday because “there’s a certain protection there.”
Janov’s great insight into cultish leaders is particularly interesting; he believes such people have had childhoods in which they were “rejected and unloved,” because “only unloved people want to become the wise man or woman (although it is usually male) imparting words of wisdom to others.” This is just one reason why Beyond Belief is such a thought-provoking, important book.”
Barry Silverstein, Freelance Writer
Quotes for "Life Before Birth"
“Life Before Birth is a thrilling journey of discovery, a real joy to read. Janov writes like no one else on the human mind—engaging, brilliant, passionate, and honest.
He is the best writer today on what makes us human—he shows us how the mind works, how it goes wrong, and how to put it right . . . He presents a brand-new approach to dealing with depression, emotional pain, anxiety, and addiction.”
Paul Thompson, PhD, Professor of Neurology, UCLA School of Medicine
Art Janov, one of the pioneers of fetal and early infant experiences and future mental health issues, offers a robust vision of how the earliest traumas of life can percolate through the brains, minds and lives of individuals. He focuses on both the shifting tides of brain emotional systems and the life-long consequences that can result, as well as the novel interventions, and clinical understanding, that need to be implemented in order to bring about the brain-mind changes that can restore affective equanimity. The transitions from feelings of persistent affective turmoil to psychological wholeness, requires both an understanding of the brain changes and a therapist that can work with the affective mind at primary-process levels. Life Before Birth, is a manifesto that provides a robust argument for increasing attention to the neuro-mental lives of fetuses and infants, and the widespread ramifications on mental health if we do not. Without an accurate developmental history of troubled minds, coordinated with a recognition of the primal emotional powers of the lowest ancestral regions of the human brain, therapists will be lost in their attempt to restore psychological balance.
Jaak Panksepp, Ph.D.
Bailey Endowed Chair of Animal Well Being Science
Washington State University
Dr. Janov’s essential insight—that our earliest experiences strongly influence later well being—is no longer in doubt. Thanks to advances in neuroscience, immunology, and epigenetics, we can now see some of the mechanisms of action at the heart of these developmental processes. His long-held belief that the brain, human development, and psychological well being need to studied in the context of evolution—from the brainstem up—now lies at the heart of the integration of neuroscience and psychotherapy.
Grounded in these two principles, Dr. Janov continues to explore the lifelong impact of prenatal, birth, and early experiences on our brains and minds. Simultaneously “old school” and revolutionary, he synthesizes traditional psychodynamic theories with cutting-edge science while consistently highlighting the limitations of a strict, “top-down” talking cure. Whether or not you agree with his philosophical assumptions, therapeutic practices, or theoretical conclusions, I promise you an interesting and thought-provoking journey.
Lou Cozolino, PsyD, Professor of Psychology, Pepperdine University
In Life Before Birth Dr. Arthur Janov illuminates the sources of much that happens during life after birth. Lucidly, the pioneer of primal therapy provides the scientific rationale for treatments that take us through our original, non-verbal memories—to essential depths of experience that the superficial cognitive-behavioral modalities currently in fashion cannot possibly touch, let alone transform.
Gabor Maté MD, author of In The Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction
An expansive analysis! This book attempts to explain the impact of critical developmental windows in the past, implores us to improve the lives of pregnant women in the present, and has implications for understanding our children, ourselves, and our collective future. I’m not sure whether primal therapy works or not, but it certainly deserves systematic testing in well-designed, assessor-blinded, randomized controlled clinical trials.
K.J.S. Anand, MBBS, D. Phil, FAACP, FCCM, FRCPCH, Professor of Pediatrics, Anesthesiology, Anatomy & Neurobiology, Senior Scholar, Center for Excellence in Faith and Health, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare System
A baby's brain grows more while in the womb than at any time in a child's life. Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script That Rules Our Lives is a valuable guide to creating healthier babies and offers insight into healing our early primal wounds. Dr. Janov integrates the most recent scientific research about prenatal development with the psychobiological reality that these early experiences do cast a long shadow over our entire lifespan. With a wealth of experience and a history of successful psychotherapeutic treatment, Dr. Janov is well positioned to speak with clarity and precision on a topic that remains critically important.
Paula Thomson, PsyD, Associate Professor, California State University, Northridge & Professor Emeritus, York University
"I am enthralled.
Dr. Janov has crafted a compelling and prophetic opus that could rightly dictate
PhD thesis topics for decades to come. Devoid of any "New Age" pseudoscience,
this work never strays from scientific orthodoxy and yet is perfectly accessible and
downright fascinating to any lay person interested in the mysteries of the human psyche."
Dr. Bernard Park, MD, MPH
His new book “Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script that Rules Our Lives” shows that primal therapy, the lower-brain therapeutic method popularized in the 1970’s international bestseller “Primal Scream” and his early work with John Lennon, may help alleviate depression and anxiety disorders, normalize blood pressure and serotonin levels, and improve the functioning of the immune system.
One of the book’s most intriguing theories is that fetal imprinting, an evolutionary strategy to prepare children to cope with life, establishes a permanent set-point in a child's physiology. Baby's born to mothers highly anxious during pregnancy, whether from war, natural disasters, failed marriages, or other stressful life conditions, may thus be prone to mental illness and brain dysfunction later in life. Early traumatic events such as low oxygen at birth, painkillers and antidepressants administered to the mother during pregnancy, poor maternal nutrition, and a lack of parental affection in the first years of life may compound the effect.
In making the case for a brand-new, unified field theory of psychotherapy, Dr. Janov weaves together the evolutionary theories of Jean Baptiste Larmarck, the fetal development studies of Vivette Glover and K.J.S. Anand, and fascinating new research by the psychiatrist Elissa Epel suggesting that telomeres—a region of repetitive DNA critical in predicting life expectancy—may be significantly altered during pregnancy.
After explaining how hormonal and neurologic processes in the womb provide a blueprint for later mental illness and disease, Dr. Janov charts a revolutionary new course for psychotherapy. He provides a sharp critique of cognitive behavioral therapy, psychoanalysis, and other popular “talk therapy” models for treating addiction and mental illness, which he argues do not reach the limbic system and brainstem, where the effects of early trauma are registered in the nervous system.
“Life Before Birth: The Hidden Script that Rules Our Lives” is scheduled to be published by NTI Upstream in October 2011, and has tremendous implications for the future of modern psychology, pediatrics, pregnancy, and women’s health.