Essay: Counseling psychology and Dumbo's feather
In 2011, the New York Times reported:
|“||Also common is a self-serving statistical sloppiness. In an analysis published this year, Dr. Wicherts and Marjan Bakker, also at the University of Amsterdam, searched a random sample of 281 psychology papers for statistical errors. They found that about half of the papers in high-end journals contained some statistical error.||”|
Counseling psychology is often an expensive "Dumbo's feather" that is a drain on society. For those not acquainted with the story, Dumbo was American animated film produced by Walt Disney which featured a flying elephant with big floppy ears. Dumbo used to hold a feather with his trunk and he was under the illusion that he needed the feather to fly. Dumbo was tricked into believing he needed his "magical feather" to fly by his mouse friend (see a pic of Dumbo with his "magic feather" HERE). However, while flying Dumbo lost his feather and his mouse friend convinced him he didn't need the feather to fly.
Faith in God vs. secular psychology: Which achieves better results?
The Apostle Paul wrote:
|“||Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God." - I Corinthians 6:9-11 (NIV)||”|
|“||Another factor from my experience as a close observer of the “ex-gay” phenomenon is that many former homosexuals do not linger in “reparative therapy” programs, or participate in them at all. They attribute their dramatic and (relatively) rapid transformation to the power of God, and likely would not show up in a study of this kind. In fact, these “unstudied” overcomers would appear to be the most successful ex-homosexuals because they’ve moved on with their lives — as “reborn” Christians move on after overcoming any besetting sin.||”|
In 1980 a study was published in the American Journal of Psychiatry and eleven men participated in this study. The aforementioned study in the American Journal of Psychiatry stated that eleven homosexual men became heterosexuals "without explicit treatment and/or long-term psychotherapy" through their participation in a Pentecostal church.
The website The Berean Call has a number of articles on various false claims and unbiblical notions that many practioners counseling psychology promote.
Laymen vs. trained psychologists: Who achieves better results?
Christian author Todd A. Sinelli wrote in an article entitled To Whom Shall We Go?:
|“|| Psychology is ineffective, impotent, and embarrassingly deceptive. The great humbug is that “the psychological industry has successfully concealed its ineffectiveness from the general public. Pastors, churches, and the laity have been brainwashed into believing that only psychologically trained professional counselors are competent to deal with serious problems.”
Empirical research indicates the exact opposite. In a study done by J.A. Durlack entitled Comparitive Effectiveness of Paraprofessional and Professional Helpers he writes, “The research reviewed forty-two studies that compared professional counselors with untrained helpers. The findings were ‘consistent and provocative.’ Paraprofessionals achieve clinical outcomes equal to or significantly better than those obtained by professionals . . . The study, on the whole, lent no support to the major hypothesis that . . . the technical skills of professional psychotherapists produce measurably better therapeutic change.”
At the conclusion of this study, psychologist Gary Collins reluctantly admits, “Clearly there is evidence that for most people, laypeople can counsel as well as or better than professionals.” Again, the bottom line is that Christians are not to turn to psychologist for guidance. Primarily because the Word of God instructs us not to and God has given us the ability to counsel one another through His Word.
A 1985 paper entitled Does professional training make a therapist more effective? which was published by the University of Texas reported there was no substantial difference in between the results that laymen and trained psychologists are able to achieve.
Psychiatric quackery, misdiagnosis and cases of racism
In 2005, The Washington Post reported:
|“|| John Zeber recently examined one of the nation's largest databases of psychiatric cases to evaluate how doctors diagnose schizophrenia, a disorder that often portends years of powerful brain-altering drugs, social ostracism and forced hospitalizations.
Although schizophrenia has been shown to affect all ethnic groups at the same rate, the scientist found that blacks in the United States were more than four times as likely to be diagnosed with the disorder as whites. Hispanics were more than three times as likely to be diagnosed as whites.
Mayo Clinic and Duke University studies
The prestigious Mayo Clinic reported the following on December 11, 2001:
|“|| In an article also published in this issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings, Mayo Clinic researchers reviewed published studies, meta-analyses, systematic reviews and subject reviews that examined the association between religious involvement and spirituality and physical health, mental health, health-related quality of life and other health outcomes.
The authors report a majority of the nearly 350 studies of physical health and 850 studies of mental health that have used religious and spiritual variables have found that religious involvement and spirituality are associated with better health outcomes.
Duke University has established the Center for Spirituality, Theology and Health. The Duke University Center for Spirituality, Theology and Health is based in the Center for Aging at Duke and gives opportunities for scholarly trans-disciplinary conversation and the development of collaborative research projects. In respect to the atheism and mental and physical health, the center offers many studies which suggest that theism is more beneficial than atheism.
In December of 2003, the University of Warwick reported:
|“||Dr. Stephen Joseph, from the University of Warwick, said: "Religious people seem to have a greater purpose in life, which is why they are happier. Looking at the research evidence, it seems that those who celebrate the Christian meaning of Christmas are on the whole likely to be happier.||”|
The website Frontier Psychiatrist wrote:
|“|| The ‘Rosenhan experiment’ is a well known experiment examining the validity of psychiatric diagnosis. It was published in 1975 by David Rosenhan in a paper entitled ‘On being sane in insane places’
The study consisted of two parts. The first involved ‘pseudopatients’ – people who had never had symptoms of serious mental disorder – who, as part of the study, briefly reported auditory hallucinations in order to gain admission to psychiatric hospitals across the United States.
After admission, the pseudopatients no longer reported hallucinations and behaved as they ‘normally’ would. Despite this many were confined as inpatients for substantial periods of time and all were discharged with the diagnosis of a psychiatric disorder.
For the second part of the experiment staff at a teaching hospital, whose staff had learned of Rosenhan’s above results, were informed that one or more pseudopatients would attempt to be admitted to their hospital over an ensuing three month period. Many patients were subsequently identified as likely pseudopatients but in fact no pseudopatient had been sent.
Earning what you are worth? Do you have the fear of man within you?
Sales psychologists George W. Dudley and Shannon L. Goodson assist companies in making their sales people resistent/impervious to call reluctance when prospecting for new clients (Mr. Dudley is a United States Marine Corps veteran so he knows a little bit about mental toughness!).
In their book entitled Earning What Your Worth? The Psychology of Call Reluctance Dudley and Goodson write:
|“||Our inventory of methods for managing call reluctance would be incomplete if we did not at least mention the religious transformation. In one of our research projects we interviewed some highly productive sales people who attributed their success to their religious faith (Dudley and Goodson. Call Reluctance Reseaerch Report for the Million Dollar Roundtable. 1988). Other salesman have made similar assertions since them. Some even claim their call reluctance was purged (along with other unwanted behaviors) by a life transforming religious experience.||”|
Of course, given the abundance of discouraged workers throughout the world who have ceased looking for unemployment and given the high amount of people who are supposedly stuck at jobs they dislike, having God given boldness and Christian faith can be a great asset in one's career. In addition, many people never start a business or fail at a business due to a lack of willingness to prospect for customers. King Solomon wrote in the Book of Proverbs: "The wicked flee when no one is pursuing, But the righteous are bold as a lion." (Proverbs 28:1 NASB). The Apostle Paul wrote: "For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline." (2 Timothy 1:7).
America's rise in mental illness
In 2010, Bruce E. Levine wrote: "In 1987, prior to Prozac hitting the market and the current ubiquitous use of antidepressants and other psychiatric drugs, the U.S. mental illness disability rate was 1 in every 184 Americans, but by 2007 the mental illness disability rate had more than doubled to 1 in every 76 Americans."
Given America's recent senseless wars, the rapid pace of change in modern life causing job instability and increased foreign economic competition, there was bound to be some increased mental illness in America. And of course, the psychology/pharmaceutical companies do aggressive marketing to sell their often dubious treatments so reported cases of mental illness was bound to go up.
False dependency creating unproductive lives
There is a perverse incentive for government workers and psychologists to create artificial dependency with their clients and keep some of their clients unnecessarily in their system. A woman stood up in a church I visited and told the congregation that she was told by a psychiatrist she would been on medication the rest of her life and no longer able to work the rest of her life. She is working and medicine free and appeared to be very content with her life for some time.
But here is an ever better story: A man was a trained as a counselor and he was forced into a mental institution against his will even though he was no risk to himself or others. They wouldn't let him leave because he aggravated them by speaking their psychobabble to them and explaining there was nothing wrong with him and he didn't need to be in a mental institution. Needless to say, they didn't like being told they made a mistake. However, when he stopped telling them they made a mistake, they finally let him go. Classic Catch-22 type situation except in reverse!
And while some people are helped by psychiatric medication such as schizophrenics, in all too many cases psychological problems are the a result of people lacking faith in God, not reading their Bibles, not praying and being their own worst enemies through lack of self-restraint. The same can be said of many of people's interpersonal problems and America's high divorce rates relative to many other parts of the world (Please see: Divorce rates for various countries).
America's underlying spiritual problems are the root cause of many of its problems
See also: Christian apologetics
|“||While 51 percent of evangelical Christians did not believe in absolute truth in an earlier survey, the percentage escalated to 62 in 1994. In 1999, it jumped to 78 percent. “You know what it is now?” asked McDowell. “One of the most staggering statistics in history of the church… 91 percent said there is no absolute truth apart from myself.”||”|
Earlier McDowell wrote: “One of the most dramatic shifts in religious beliefs in the country is how people view the Bible. Only 30 years ago, two-thirds of adults accepted the Bible as the actual work of God, to be taken literally word for word; only 32% view it that way today.”
McDowell gave similar statistics in an article entitled The Spiritual Life of Young Americans
Faith in God is the solution to many of America's problems and to many world problems
Australian online opinion writer and lecturer in ethics and philosophy at several Melbourne theological colleges, Bill Muehlenberg, in his essay The Unbearable Heaviness of Being (In a World Without God) writes:
|“||Announcing, and believing, that God is dead has consequences. And it is we who suffer the most for it. We cannot bear the whole universe on our shoulders. We were not meant to. We must let God be God. Only then can men be men. Only then can we find the way forward to be possible, and the burdens not insurmountable.||”|
There are often earthly consequences to life without God as can been through the articles below:
The United States is not the first country to experience many problems and it won't be the last. Nobel Prize winner Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn was asked to account for the great tragedies that occurred under the brutal communist regime he and fellow citizens suffered under under the atheistic Soviet Union.
|“|| Over a half century ago, while I was still a child, I recall hearing a number of old people offer the following explanation for the great disasters that had befallen Russia: "Men have forgotten God; that's why all this has happened.
Since then I have spend well-nigh 50 years working on the history of our revolution; in the process I have read hundreds of books, collected hundreds of personal testimonies, and have already contributed eight volumes of my own toward the effort of clearing away the rubble left by that upheaval. But if I were asked today to formulate as concisely as possible the main cause of the ruinous revolution that swallowed up some 60 million of our people, I could not put it more accurately than to repeat: "Men have forgotten God; that's why all this has happened."
Other articles and other resources:
Comedy and Satire:
- Does Richard Dawkins have machismo?
- Conservapedia obsessive compulsive disorder
- Acute Conservapedia obsessive compulsive disorder
- Comedy and satires concerning atheism and evolution (large collection of comedy/satire concerning atheism and evolution)
- How the Fraudulent Dr Fox Fooled The Shrinks
- The Legendary Dr Fox Lecture - Footage Found!
- Top 5 quack mental health remedies
- ↑ Psychology is not science
- ↑ Fraud Case Seen as a Red Flag for Psychology Research
- ↑ Dutch psychologist Strapel accused of research fraud
- ↑ Fraud Case Seen as a Red Flag for Psychology Research
- ↑ http://www.americansfortruth.com/news/landmark-study-change-for-homosexuals-is-possible.html
- ↑ E.M. Pattison and M.L. Pattison, "'Ex-Gays': Religiously Mediated Change in Homosexuals," American Journal of Psychiatry, Vol. 137, pp. 1553-1562, 1980
- ↑ http://www.thebereancall.org/topic/psychology
- ↑ http://littorch.com/articles/to-whom-shall-we-go/
- ↑ http://www.psych.umn.edu/courses/fall07/brunnquelld/psy8542/Session%2007/Berman%20session%207_1986-02211-001.pdf
- ↑ http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3901068
- ↑ http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2005/06/27/AR2005062701496.html
- ↑ http://www.mayoclinicproceedings.com/content/76/12/1225.full.pdf
- ↑ http://www.mayoclinicproceedings.com/content/76/12/1225.full.pdf
- ↑ http://www.dukespiritualityandhealth.org/
- ↑ http://www.dukespiritualityandhealth.org/about/
- ↑ http://www.dukespiritualityandhealth.org/publications/latest.html
- ↑ http://www.scienceblog.com/community/older/2003/A/20037338.html
- ↑ http://frontierpsychiatrist.co.uk/the-rosenhan-experiment-examined/
- ↑ Earning What Your Worth? The Psychology of Call Reluctance, George W. Dudley and Shannon L. Goodson, page 335. 1995
- ↑ http://www.counterpunch.org/levine04282010.html
- ↑ Christian Post article
- ↑ http://www.billmuehlenberg.com/2008/05/26/the-unbearable-heaviness-of-being-in-a-world-without-god/
- ↑ http://www.icr.org/article/stalins-brutal-faith/