Sunday, October 23, 2016

Depression OR Mental Illness

This is a rough topic to cover. Especially, I want to get it all into one post so as not to constantly talk about it. Yet I DO want to talk about it, if it will help someone out there. 

Not everyone who is depressed is mentally ill. There are different types of depression. Some which are not even categorizes as mental illness, more situational or from abuse or emotional problems. Others are from brain chemistry. Please know, this post covers a variety of topics in this category, and is not limited to mental illness.

Starting with depression, there are 2 'basic' types. One is from [bad] life experiences; the other is clinical - an issue with brain chemistry etc. I am not a doctor, and just going to offer what has come my way.

For Clinical Depression - that is related to physiology. Anyone on medication, I am NOT suggesting to go off meds, be they natural or a prescription. If you're not satisfied with what your doctor has you taking, find a better doctor willing to work with you, but work with some Health Care Professional.

For Nonclinical Depression - therapy is what generally resolves this. However, I've run into many devotees that go extreme. Some quote it almost as much as they quote Prabhupada. What is that joke? Q) Is it possible for some people to get addicted to therapy?  A) Yes, but how would you treat them? :) ha  

Ok, putting humor aside, I believe in therapy. I also believe if it's real, it comes to a conclusion, gets you back on your own two feet. It does not go on for years upon years. If that is the case, either the therapist is ripping you off, or there is something else going on they can not help you with. One person expressed that therapy made them feel soooo good, massive sense gratification. I can't relate ha. Of course we should do things to feel good, but when speaking of long term - this is not one of them. Additional reasons some might maintain decades of therapy could be: Refusal to get better, blocks to improvement beyond their control, situations which require modifications, a need for help that is not available, attachment to using therapy for an excuse to get out of the house, or even unrecognized biological Mental Illness - sometimes. With that said....

Nonclinical depression in and of itself can nevertheless be a stickler. Many devotees have become depressed. A big reason? The Movement changed. We did not see much of this in the old days, when Prabhupada was here, and we were all engaging in so much blissful devotional service under his direction.

IMHO after the others took over, the average devotees who had been around when Prabhupada was present - thus had something to compare to - saw the difference and became depressed.

For the oldies who could not blindly surrender to the changes, even those who were polite and quiet about it - no longer fit. Where would we go now? And what would we do if we did find somewhere that would take us, since we were out of place in this new society? 

Those who stayed and surrendered, may have repressed emotions in order to maintain service, living quarters, and so on. Knowingly, but often unknowingly.

Some may not even see these as reasons they feel depressed. It may not be the reason for all, but it is for more than meets the eye.  When Prabhupada was on the planet, his transcendental presence [even when not there physically] kept the devotees and Movement elevated.

Ignorance is bliss and those who do not know better, suffer less. At first. After enough time of reading not only Prabhupada's books but also history and his instructions in the old days, eventually most realize things aren't what they use to be. Learning Prabhupada said not to change a thing, as one discovers the many changes which happened over time, THAT can be depressing. We need to return to the way it was. Until that happens, we can do it at home, or small groups of people can gather together creating their own Sunday feasts, Etc.

Moving on to the more Medical side of this issue:

I was shocked how much got passed off as mental illness but is not. For example, one doctor who specialized in Schizophrena, discovered a large percentage of his patients became stabilized with a high dose of Niacin. [Milk thistle or Dandelion root protects the liver.] Niacin sounds too easy, I know, but he tested it over and over. He thought his psychiatric colleagues would be thrilled! Instead, he nearly got the boot! The reason? He believes it was a threat to a huge industry. And money. It's not profitable to resolve schizophrenia, especially with something anyone can get over the counter. Not saying it works for everyone, but without it even being mentioned, and without giving it a try, one will never know.

He died [around 80 or 90 years of age], Today you can find this information about schizophrenia and Vitamin B3 on the net, tho you have to know the right keywords and it's still not accepted by most of the allopathic medical society.

What was discovered is that many hearing voices etc / schizophrenics, had a heavy metal in their body. We all get that same heavy metal but their body is unable to detox it. Niacin has been proven in labs, to detox it!  Such a simple solution, backed by science, but allopaths don't want it.

Niacinamide is a form of Niacin does not result in the flushing reaction. Pure Encapsulation offers a high quality type here.  So does Thorne Research, a vegan company, here.  

That's just one of my rants. lol Or how cat boxes carry a toxin that can create mental illness in some.

Or how Harvard University tested Omega 3's to work as good or better in some cases, for Bipolar as well as Unipolar [regular tho clinical] Depression. Including when the patient did not respond to an allopathic prescription med.

TrueHope is a wonderful product for mental health. The short explanation of how this works, is that even with the best of diets, for whatever reason, sufficient nutrition does not reach the brain for some people. Read the science. It would be too much for me to put in this one post. :-) 

Testimonials: These are interesting videos by people and families who had personal success with this product.

Here is another, similar Orthomolecular company. Backed by scientific studies. To the best of my knowledge this product is not available in health food stores, etc. If wondering which brand to get, they both were TrueHope but eventually split into two separate companies. I don't know which is better. Ask your pocketbook, coupled with how many capsules etc one is willing to take daily. Your loved one must be willing to cooperate. With that said, they both have countless success stories and scientific backup.

Lithium is actually a mineral, as much as zinc, iron, calcium, etc. Surprised? Well, the prescription is different, but they both work the same way. Isn't it good to know anyone can legally buy this natural mineral online? Make sure it's what's needed first. If so, just google these keywords: organic lithium orotate  Here is a quality lithium orotate product, as is this one. Make your choice. :) NOTE: I have also read it helped people with: Migraines, Fibromyalgia, Graves disease, low dose helped some deal with Alcoholism, reduces chances of brain shrinkage. Do your homework, but please come back and get it through my links directly above.

CILANTRO ~ This herb is unique in it's known effect for removing heavy metals from the body. Specifically mercury, lead and aluminum. Though I have not fully research so there could be more. Since some, enough, who have Mental Illness have shown a connection to heavy metals in their body and brain, this is a wonderful herb to help detox and remove them. (When metals are found to be present, they're inclined to interfere with synaptic responses). It's best to first get a hair analysis or some type of lab test (even blood work if necessary),  in order to find out factually, without speculation, if there are heavy metal's in the body or not. Contact a health care practitioner who has had experience in this field and can guide you through it.

And because, parasites, candida, tend to increase after heavy metals are removed - usually it is best to do a parasite or candida cleanse FIRST. 

So, parasites are another potential culprit. For example, in the Hulda Zapper book, it states that the parasite "strongyloides" have been discovered by every person with Depression, going on to say for Bipolar "This variety of depression is associated with Strongyloides, as the main parasite in the brain. Plus chlorine as an allergen."

Strongyloides are a roundworm which lives within the soil and can survive there for several generations! Also pointing out: "These tiny wormlets can pass into the placenta into the unborn fetus(!). Is it any wonder that these brain disturbances seem to be inherited? Of course, there is ample opportunity to simply eat them off hands, other people's hands, and off floors during childhood."

For Schizophrenia, Ergot (Claviceps purpurea) is a parasitic fungus, seems to be the main culprit. The book states: "Ergot is always seen in sick persons. Other mycotoxins are also present, including sterigmatocystin, cytochalasin B, and aflatoxin. As the mycotoxin panorama changes, brain symptoms can change from compulsive hand washing to paranoia or from hearing voices to meanness in disposition.

... A bacterium, Mycobacterium pheli, may also be a cause because I have seen high correlations between it and schizophrenia cases." pg 261 (Google herbs for parasitic cleanses & Oral chelation.)

Also from a web site [I just tested and it went defunct, but the info remains helpful] -  "There are notes that tell us about villages, whose inhabitants turned into bloodthirsty werewolves. At a closer look though these phenomenon's originated inside people's heads as one of the substances in ergots is closely related to LSD."

While I can't type all of it up, here is another important point from the parasite book: "Don't go off lithium and other medications until your doctors agrees you are ready, about a half year. After this, make sure you still keep it handy. Although you may be free of manic depression in a day, reinfecting yourself weeks later will attack your brain like a hurricane; it has not yet healed, the routes are open. Be
patient; healing will happen ...." pg 259

In addition to herbs for detoxing parasites; consider a colonic, hulda zapper or rife machine, anything that gets the job done. One man, an athlete, told the story how he became so infected by parasites he nearly turned into an invalid. And at first, no one knew what was wrong. He told of various doctors and underwent various treatments.  Most did not work, a few helped a bit. A new doctor tested him and discovered the parasite called toxoplasma gondii he managed to pick up hiking & mountain climbing somewhere out of the norm.This doc put him on raw organic coconut oil. Over a period of time, the man said he was completely free of this gondii parasite that had immobilized him! He even went back to his athletic lifestyle, tho I bet he's more careful where he goes now. :) To assit [raw, organic] coconut oil to work, it helps to find out  what type of parasite one has. It may or may not work on others, I simply to do not know. So mix it up - or better yet - get tested. 

"A parasitic infection can give you schizophrenia, make you have a car crash, or determine the sex of your child." by Kathy A. Svitil.
Oxford University zoologists showed that the parasite Toxoplasma gondii alters the brain chemistry of rats so that they are more likely to seek out cats. Infection thus makes a rat more likely to be killed and the parasite more likely to end up in a cat—the only host in which it can complete the reproductive step of its life cycle. The parasite also lives in the brain cells of thousands of species, including about 60 million supposedly symptom-free Americans. Studies over the past few years have suggested that toxoplasmosis infections in humans, too, may cause behavioral changes —from subtle shifts to outright schizophrenia. Two studies this year add even weirder twists.

Again, use the herbs or anything else that specifies it will work for such medical issues.

Next, some have had good luck with BioFeedback / EEG. This Neurofeedback has been reputed to stabilize & normalize their brain. Here's a short, scientific article on EEG for bi-polar. This looks very hopeful and tho the clinics cost, I have seen this same thing offered both in software and on a CD. Of course, one must be willing & disciplined enough to do it at home - regularly. Or possibly get someone to help them make sure to do it. [And yet I've ended another sentence with a preposition! lol My apologies, tho I'm not Latin anyway ha, as it's a Latin rule that found it's way into the English language. I'm trying to type as if talking to the reader directly - Personalism.] .....Anyway, you will have to google for a CD or software, but it's out there!

NeuroScience: This site does laboratory testing plus sells vegetarian Amino Acids. At least last time I looked at it they were veggie. Hmmm That was years ago, better double check. Anyway, they do neuro testing and also use to accept payment from Medicare or personal Insurance. It appears their products are only available thru health-care providers so if ya dont have one and try to buy what is needed independently, they probably won't sell to you. Tho again, I have not checked to see if they've updated any policies, so do your homework [or email them], but looks good! NeuroRelief

Briefly, a little info on financial support for those who live in the USA. Social Security.  Automated information 24 hours a day through touch-tone phone. Has 2 programs that pay benefits to people with disabilities. Social Security Disability Insurance & Supplemental Security Income. Provides downloadable SSA publications online. Note: If you have any trouble getting SSDI (Disability), check out the website - allsup:

Allsup - helps you get Disabilty for Mental Illness (SSDI)
Quote: "Allsup understands how hard getting the Social Security disability benefits you deserve can be. ...Allsup will take care of getting the Social Security disability benefits you deserve, whether you are applying for the first time or appealing a denial. Our 97% success rate obtaining Social Security disability benefits for our clients is proof of that. (This is for USA only.) I don't know how much they charge.

The Life and Death of a Neuron - Discovered this posted on an Ayurvedic egroup. Good find! Also, I liked it cuz it proves the brain can mend itself! And that is what Orthomolecular medicine (& some others) do. ... There were several helpful pictures of a nueron, etc etc. To see them and read the info, go here

Clinical and preclinical data reported that ascorbic acid [Vitamin C] has antidepressant properties. Read medical jargon ha here.  

A Form of Vit E Has Antidepressant Effects: alpha-Tocopherol administration produces an antidepressant-like effect.

Phospholipids and insulin resistance in psychosis: a lipidomics study of twin pairs discordant for schizophrenia.

Many claim sugar does not cause Mental Illness, but it can bring on an attack. You can research this if you like. Right now I wanted to share the alternative: Stevia.  

Stevia is an herb but tastes like a sugar, it's used in sweetening bakery goods or teas or most anything that needs sweetening. As much as you would like to remove candy etc from your loved one's diet, that's difficult for most folk, so imagine if a person is experiencing depression or even mania, etc, then told "no sugar."  Pretty hard to comply with, even when they want to. However, there is this alternative. Hurray! :)

And stevia is recommended for those with Diabetes. Some claim it is even helpful to Diabetics while others say the verdict is not in (on improving Diabetes, but it is in on "lack" of sugar rush.)

While I do not know for certain it's effects within Mental Illness though my bet is, it's farrrrrrrrrrr healthier than white sugar, etc. Some have an aftertaste tho. The company I found with no aftertaste is NuStevia.

Another natural sweetener and it tastes exactly like sugar but actually healthy, is organic xylitol. It seems to be less popular, but I like it because it's also anti-viral, anti-bacterial, strengthens teeth & bones, etc. In many cases it's a bit cheaper than stevia. Just make sure it's organic. Here is one from Now Foods.

Sudarshan Kriya - I've heard a lot about the ability of this to reverse [nonclinical] depression, etc. I've read that it works! It likely works for clinical depression too, if one is taking their meds, be they a script or natural. Quote from site: "Yogic breathing, Pranayama, is a unique method for balancing the autonomic nervous system and influencing psychological and stress-related disorders. One specific form of these breathing exercises is Sudarshan Kriya Yoga (SKY) which is shown to have favorable effects on the mind–body system."

Next, a Book: Kundalini Yoga Meditation for Complex Psychiatric Disorders: Techniques Specific for Treating the Psychoses, Personality, and Pervasive Developmental Disorders.

Being a slight addict ha [hey, I said slight, it use to be worse lol], I ran across this book and was taken by it. It's worth looking into.

This is for those who WILL COOPERATE and usually does not replace medication even if they do it, tho might reduce the dose [am 'always' including natural medication when I use this word, 'medication']. Work with the doctor, as they can decide to make changes in medication. With that said, this is a good book and I've noticed he has since that time, put out a couple others! Some years ago I read online, scientific backing for his method. Lost the link, but check out the book. Than remember to double check at ebay or half. 

Another about Yoga: Not Just an Exercise- "When Jenny Smith was 41 years old, her mental illness became so severe that she could barely walk or speak. After days of feeling wonderful one moment and hallucinating that spiders and bugs were crawling on her skin the next, she landed in the hospital.

Smith is a victim of bipolar disorder, an illness characterized by oscillating feelings of elation and utter depression. And though she had tried 11 different medications for relief, some in combination, nothing seemed to work. Upon leaving the hospital, Smith was told that she could expect to be in and out of psychiatric hospitals for the rest of her life. Soon after her release, Smith decided to learn hatha yoga, which incorporates specific postures, meditation and pranayamas, deep abdominal breathing techniques that relax the body. As she practiced daily, Smith noticed that her panic attacks— were a symptom of panic disorder, a disease that some bipolar disorder sufferers also contend with— were subsiding." Full story / testimonial here.

After medication  [including natural] some have found great help with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. It's not for those whose goals with therapy are to gain insight into the past. It's more about developing life skills. And many with mental illness avoid therapy for the very reason of digging and delving into their past - but they do embrace learning better life skills!

Besides, it's a misunderstanding that digging into the past always brings relief or healing. At the library years ago, read a health book. Inside was a chapter on Meditation. It talked how it can bring you peace. But here's what many don't know. It had a few paragraphs where it said... paraphrased: "If you have Depression, do NOT go within. This can cause an increase in your depression." ....It went on to explain more, but I knew they were right. And knew I had hit on something that validated my personal beliefs. That while therapy has it's place, there are times of digging and delving into the past which can do 'more' harm than good, especially if it is not a licensed professional (and successful) Therapist who does it for you. Or worse, doing it yourself.

The second piece of info: Approximately 40 percent of those who undergo therapy to dig up childhood trauma or other abuses they have stuffed down, will get worse! I was surprised to read those stats. It great that 60% will improve, tho any medication which had a failure rate of 40%, their drug would be taken off the market. Maybe even some law suits would follow. So lets not play with this. Only do that which lift spirits, bring happiness or joy, improves life skills, etc. And devotees, I knowing you mean well, but without a certificate on your wall, please stop psychoanalyzing people. [Even with a certificate, people make appointments with the therapist and not the other way around.]

Additionally folks need to know, some who have mental illness but refuse treatment [from  meds to therapy] are not in denial -  instead they can't see it due to a physical brain malfunction called Anosognosia. Lets stop blaming them when we notice they're medicine resistant, and educate ourselves, which next may lead to alternative solutions. Or, if it is the reader with some form of [diagnosed] mental illness yet you do not see it in yourself, all I can suggest is that when a bunch of people keep telling you repeatedly that you 'are' acting abnormal [tho not speculating on your condition], at least consider it, and try to work with it, even if it be a more natural or comfortable approach. 

Healing with Sound: Not to replace meds, and my overall stance on natural or prescription meds, is to keep on them or only go off 'after' your doctor says it's ok to do so. Next is the sweet info that when intentionally exposing ones self to more gentle, loving, healing sound vibration, plays it's role! A bit of the science behind the healing power of sound.

Center for Music Therapy - As seen on "48 hours." Stories how the method of music therapy, used at this center, significantly helped a young man with traumatic brain injury, someone with CP, another with Tourette Syndrome, Parkinson's Disease, etc.

Some benefit by hearing music, other do better learning to play an instrument. Drums are high on the list. Get out those mrdangas! :) If you don't know how to play one, google for lessons, or pull up a piece of the furniture. :) 

This is an impressive video how the brain of musicians are different, stronger than most, due to the direct result of playing an instrument. Fascinating!

In the above vid, while they're technically right about just listening as less effective, but there is another way that too can bring healing results for those who prefer listening. That would be, working with binaurals [requires headphones] or isochronics  [no headphones needed] scientific studies have proven brains heal, improve, even more

Afterthought: Just read listening to drums gives the same effect as playing drums. Most likely, one would have be attentive to the drumming. If you enjoy listening, this should be easy.

If you get less attentive soon into it, you may be more of a guitar or etc type person. In which case, they now have created melodic binaural music. Must use headphones for the full benefit. That's good cuz it makes one take time out for themselves, to stop the world from spinning and just do this. [Make sure to pick the hertz needed for one's individual need.] IMHO only, the place with the most scientific evidence is

Opera Singer Turns NeuroScientist Healer:  I'm not into Opera ha, but that's not the point. Linda Maguire discovered certain sounds had "significant" healing effects on others, and did an about-face. She combined her knowledge of music with her newly learned knowledge of Neuroscience, creating sounds that heal. Yes, she prefers opera, but also offers other options for a while. Some are free on youtube tho the ones I heard were a bit fuzzy. Anyhow, this is the western understanding of how sound works to heal. In the long run, I found both eastern and western to heal and just looked at it in different ways. Good to know both. She offers her own playlist music program. Links embedded in article.

I suspect some stopped chanting their rounds, or reduced them significantly, due to feeling depressed over issues in the Movement. I'm not going to get further into that, but wish to point out an new reason to some, for chanting again, even if only an additional round per day - or if ya can't do rounds, find a stotra or even Krishnai bija mantra you enjoy. The following is is the Eastern Perspective on Healing with Sound / Mantra, tho in this unique site include science as well. If you'd like some info about what is functioning behind mantra or how it can personally benefit you, Read This

* PLEASE NOTE: I do not necessarily agree in full with the spiritual philosophy on the above or other sites, they are the merely sources of science that I found. For spiritual philosophy I turn to Prabhupada only. For healing, there are many others here to pick from, but few Vaisnava sound healing options out there. [Or it's been kept secret.] Once you understand what mantra-sound results in which type of mending, you can look for similar sounding Vaisnava Mantras. With that said, the above is a very interesting site! It proves how chanting can heal.

After reading the scientific studies or info on the link above, here is a healing chant to consider. 

Sanskrit Improves Brain Functioning - "Dr. Travis asked his test subjects to read passages from the Bhagavad-Gita in Sanskrit and in modern foreign languages (Spanish, French, or German). In each case they could pronounce the sounds but did not know the meaning. He measured brain wave patterns (ERG), heart and breath rate, and galvanic skin resistance during two reading sessions and during a 15-minute session of the Transcendental Meditation technique."  Details of the study, here.  Those who would like to watch some video interviews on this same topic, go here.

Chant and Be Happy - We all need to spend some time on happiness and here George Harrison explains how. Interview between him and his life long friend and godbrother, Mukunda Maharaja. Read about George's realizations, dedication to Lord Sri Krishna, etc. 

Some fun, creative, spiritual activities.

Please remember, while there are many of ideas on this page, including supplements, it's important to first get tested [or get your loved one tested] to figure out exactly 'what' herb or vitamin or etc is needed medically. One mans food is another mans poison. Example: Some who are depressed found great relief with SAMe, yet a number of reported cases of SAMe caused manic or hypomanic episodes (excessively up or happy moods, extreme impulsivity in sexuality or with spending money, pressured speech, or less sleep). Tho these reports show SAMe is an effective antidepressant, since all prescription antidepressants have that capability as well. But if one is hyperactive, or especially if manic yet get depressed [found in Bipolar], than SAMe would have the listed negative effects. Do the work to find out specifically what is needed.
* My past experience trying to help others with emotional issues [different from mental illness, as mental illness is physical as much as the flu]..... too many wanted the problems to go away but unwilling to do the work necessary to achieve such results. I don't like lumping everyone in, and am sure many are not like that. Simply, it is true some are. That's why I no longer give direct email help. I now leave it up to each individual. The information is here, as well as all over the web, especially with the connections / links above. One link will lead to others and so much info is now available. Anyone who truly wants to get better, can. Find your mojo and go for it! :)

ALL DISCLAIMERS APPLY. Nothing here is meant to diagnose, nor replace a Doctor. Please seek out a licensed professional Health Care Practitioner.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

How I Came To Krishna Consciousness

While previously "touching on" how I became a devotee, there is more I left out. It was actually a very wonderful journey to go through.

I lived in this little bungalow colony. Actually two. ha. Though I was not seeking them out - it just happened that way.

In the first one, there were about 5 bungalows in a row. The last 2 or 3, us teens or young adults. We often got together and talked of God, the Universe, and all sorts of "far out" stuff. :)

One day an initiated devotee showed up. [Someone who lived there knew him.] He took us all outside to sit on a madras. He played kartals, all of us chanted Hare Krishna with him under the beautiful sun, blue skies, and white clouds. Terrific experience! Then he left.

The landlord changed hands and it became too expensive and complicated to stay. By chance found a 2nd bungalow colony. It may sound like they were all over the place or that I was into them. But neither is the case. With hindsight, since the people who lived at both of them were open to Krishna, I at least wonder if Krishna arranged I find them. Don't know for certain of course, but it's an interesting thought.

At the 2nd one, I met this young married couple who attended the temple. Tho they never moved in, they gave their daughter a devotee name. He loaned the Radha Krishna album, and I was fascinated by Yamuna's chant "Om Purnama Adah Purnamadah." It was so mystical! I'd play it over and over.   LINK TO THIS SONG.

There was another young couple, but they were into a different guru at that time. Nonetheless, they too liked to talk about yoga and God, believed in Krishna.

Somewhere along the line I learned about offering food. I had this little dark color wooden table, put a huge poster of Krishna on the wall behind it. Later learned to put a Prabhupada pic under His lotus feet. I'd set plates of food on this table and offer by ... well chanting... but also singing and dancing Hare Krishna. haha Did not know dancing was not part of offering. lol [Tho it's fine and even encouraged after the special mantras are said.] The fun of it all, ha, I learned as I went.

Visited the temple once and on the 2nd visit, moved in.

Times have changed so please be aware that you do not need to join anything. And  there is no need for fundamentalism - actually, that is discouraged.

I started out at home and it was so much fun! This idea that spiritual life should not be fun is bogus. If anything, it should feel good, Krishna feels good. Anyone can do this and have a blast, like I did. :) Music, dancing, feasting, chanting, Etc... what a great path toward God.

The goodness of pudding is not in reading the recipe over and over, but diving into what was read once and tasting it! Please give this Krishna C some ruchi or real tangible taste via experiences you create in your own home.