Preface: Being Becoming: Integrative Paradigms For Developmental Metaphysics




Richard Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW

Few would argue that we do not need to better understand and explain the constitution of our essence, potential and purpose.  The conditions of our existence influence our self-concept and the way our being participates in relationships.  These include marital, family, church, school, workplace and the extended physical, quantum, morphic, metaphysical and spiritual interfaces with our environment.

Working assumptions in Philosophy, Medicine, Psychology, Social Work, Science, Technology, Business, Sociology  and other disciplines are based on variables we think we understand and the meaning and value we assign to them.   The composition of our being reflects the relationship between our essence and the potential that extends from it and in some sense because of it.   The conscious employment of will and volition emerge from our essence and potential which in turn are influenced by our values and the way we integrate perceptions, experiences, consequences and benefits.

One interdisciplinary mission of Being Becoming: Interdisciplinary Paradigms is to consider what constitutes the fullness of being so that our approaches to serving others will correspond to the real needs and conditions of their personhood.  In other words, we need to possess an adequate orientation to help facilitate human development in a way that does the most good and avoids doing harm?  If our criteria for good or harm are not sufficiently developed because we do not fathom the nature of being, essence, potential, existence and more, then by what right do we presume to posture ourselves as primary agencies, authorities, gatekeepers, facilitators, therapists, managers, executives and the like?   

Volume I begins by examining key aspects of physiology in considerable depth, with an eye towards integrating a wider range of interacting components than typically demonstrated in conventional scientific models.  Here we consider Ontological and Epistemological implications of being expanding outside a materialist framework, including ramifications of being in Being as a foundation for interpreting the framework of our actual makeup, functioning, life force, experiences and perceptions.  

One early goal of this work was to improve the depth, quality and comprehensiveness of “working theory” that orients decision making in the circles earlier identified.   I was motivated to introduce a series of paradigms with the power to equipped those of similar ilk to draw practitioners, researchers, educators, managers and more to a place where they could no longer so casually restrict spoken and unspoken “working assumptions and dialogs” into monist and materialist frameworks.  Adding and subtracting from the nomenclature is required.   The specifics depend on the context. 

Along with recognizing existence tethered to variables outside of three dimensions, it is also very important to fathom that such an expanded mindset must navigate with the help of Ontological frameworks that tend to ground us to respect for the transcendent nature of humankind as well as consider a foundational ethos supporting well-being – proper utilization of conscience, considered explicitly in the final chapter of this Volume.  On this we heavy rely and because this is the case, broad pastoral explanations, insights and guidelines cannot be ignored even by the atheist and agnostic.

The Being Becoming Series is in part designed to persuasively overcome conceptual impasses binding individual professionals to entrenched biases, problematic intellectual frameworks and manipulative reward systems in many venues.  It is formulated to revive the potential and quality of emerging theory as well as practice in the face of prevailing orientations that may at times be adverse to reasonable integration of findings within a larger interdisciplinary synthesis.

With barriers to certain categories of improvement, both upstream and downstream, entrenched systems and political ideologies tend to create conditions fostering unnecessary double talk, submerged duplicity and other quagmires amongst a wide variety of practitioners and leaders in philosophy, science, medicine, education, social service and much more.  Therefore, it is necessary to quip those who wish to improve conditions with high quality insights, questions and proposals for integrated knowledge that leads to more holistic and trustworthy conversation, mission and purpose.

If you have read this far, you are probably quite concerned about the consequences of scientists, health professionals, corporate leaders, technology experts, teachers and administrators remaining in the shallows.  At the same time, you may be looking for examples of individuals who were accomplished in the sciences and at the same time were able to reframe their knowledge within quantum, morphic, metaphysical and spiritual domains.   A central figure to look at is 1963 Nobel Laureate in Physiology and Medicine – Sir John Eccles.  If one examines his published works from 1932 (Reflex Activity of the Spinal Cord) to 1994 (How the Self Controls Its Brain), we see a gradual progression towards a view that expands from the strictly physiological to the metaphysical and spiritual dimensions of man – including a credible effort in resolving the so called mind – body problem that he interface with and extend beyond Cartesian Dualism.   In sum, in this last book, he offered the concept of “Psychons” as a metaphysical mental units in interaction with a large quantity of “Dendrons”, fundamental physical units in the Cerebral Cortex.

Though his work at all stages had a wide audience it certainly shifted over time, some in scientific fields found reasons to break ranks after he published Facing Reality in 1970 and continued to pull away as he continued to produce books that pressed for a more comprehensive model of mind-brain.  One of his predecessors, German physicist Friedrich Beck (1927-2008), tended to walk the fence on Eccles’ models, especially after his death, offering neural transmission explanations from the nomenclature and models of quantum physics.  He was primarily known for his quantum tunneling interpretation to bridge the gap (plausibly stretching outside of three dimensions, but not necessarily). 

A sense of meaning and purpose cannot be divorced from how one perceives his or her development in the context of being in community.  Indeed, the models and language we use tend to be heavily influenced by our relationships and those who have authority.  “Validation” received from ‘carrot and stick management strategies’, research funding sources and other controlling players with reductionistic assumptions may seriously undermine the potential for thorough self-examination, self-direction and growth.  They may also cause a person to prostitute their faculties in order to accomplish research designed with their goals in mind rather than coming to terms with a holistic understanding of the truth.  The Being Becoming Series offers an understanding of human potential and essence that will help influential players, from scientists, to physicians to managers, realign baseline assumptions about what makes up the human person.

Are you aware of certain psychological, medical, scientific, and philosophical modalities of assessing individuals and groups that may be “standard”, but believe the nomenclature and underpinnings to be shortsighted and reductionistic, often suppressing or perverting the potential for optimal growth and the fortification of potentialities, essence(s) and being? As a ’systemic thinker’ are you motivated to consider a presentation purposed to target key areas of philosophy, science, medicine and Theology relevant to becoming whole and helping others to be the best versions of themselves – and at times from harming themselves? 

Perhaps you have considered integrating material from a wide variety of sources within an effective interdisciplinary synthesis, but have been discouraged by the effort required to credibly integrate the material in a way suitable for public consumption.  Keep in mind that most colleges and universities have opportunities for interdisciplinary studies at every level.  Many have interdisciplinary departments.  This approach has evolved significantly over the past 50 years and will continue to do so.  Welch (2011) explains in his abstract of “The Emergence of Interdisciplinarity From Epistemological Thought”: 

Interdisciplinary studies has positioned itself as an innovative approach to comprehending, navigating, and transforming knowledge. The emphasis in recent scholarship upon complex systems and integration of insights from disciplinary perspectives mark decisive progress toward the development of a cohesive theory of interdisciplinarity. Such a theory would entail establishing an epistemology of complexity through epistemological negotiation. I argue that the interdisciplinary approach to knowledge is a logical evolution of the history of Western thought…(p. 1)

He suggests that “such an approach to knowledge requires a metacognitive awareness to the way truth itself is formed” (p. 2) and that complexity has become the cornerstone of interdisciplinary theory (p32).  This approach moves away from reducing knowledge to simple structures or idealized models and acknowledges its dependence on context, focusing on relationships between systemic elements (p. 32).  He points out Derrida who suggests that “différance enables complexity itself, and allows for the possibility of epistemological progress without ignoring the way in which it problematizes itself” (p. 33).  

Developments in the neurosciences, chemistry, physics, math, technology and engineering possess greater and greater magnitude in their social and environmental ramifications — for good or for ill.  The theoretical underpinnings and often troubled dynamics within these venues as well as many areas of medicine, management and human resources often signal an increased need for interdisciplinary checks, balances and cooperation.  This work strives to offer a common nomenclature with the potential to increase unification across these diverse fields without diminishing the importance of any given discipline.

The interdisciplinary synthesis of this Series offers a very wide range of content relevant for linking and expanding standard paradigms to highly relevant dimensions of physiology as it may be interfaced with, quantum, morphic, metaphysical and spiritual realms. My hope is to draw our minds towards making room for notions that expand conventional physiology without giving undue weight to any sphere of influence.  The issues may often come down not to agreeing that a particular notion may or may not have merit, but how much weight given in the overall schema.  This is why modern epistemology cannot be totally divorced from consensus building and some level of negotiation, not for the sake of negotiation, but for the sake of better clarifying through intellectually honest discussion, its relative place in the scheme of things as well as the limitations and merit of any given representation at any given interval in any given context.

Many are responding to invitations to reexamine what their professions are evidently conveying and not conveying to themselves and those they serve.  In some instances, critiquing what they do not recognize and fortify is almost as important as examining what they do.  For example, if a group of social workers in a conference on domestic violence appear to give inordinate weight to the notion of “rights” and problem solving via dissolution of marriage within a radically feminist schema of service and gatekeeping then society at large has a problem and there is no recourse singling out one or two people for correction or disciplinary action.   How does society respond to subgroups of professionals who tend to grossly discount the relative value of marriage and family preservation and radically overweigh their angry sentiments against males with impoverish backgrounds or otherwise, trapped in cycles of abusive behavior towards spouses. 

Blind spots, cognitive distortions, group think and problematic approaches found in disciplines administrated in relative isolation can often be exposed and remedied through constructive interdisciplinary dialog fortified with concepts generated from “the outside”.  Ideally, such exchanges will help set the stage for improvements emerging from “the inside” as well.   Often the process and outcomes will not be formally established and explicitly rectified, but graduated in the context of mutually beneficial interdisciplinary dialogs.

Each venue of professional life presents a unique set of challenges that relate to needs, opportunities and various types of suppression.  The most general is human resources. It is rather basic to understand incentives for management to orchestrate work conditions that facilitate outcomes of reliable, effective and efficient productivity.  Many have demonstrably understood and responded to the need to encourage holistic lifestyles with sufficient private reflection, time with family and recreation.  These accommodations have certainly been instrumental in helping large numbers of employees function in accordance with the expectations of management. 

What is especially critical to spot are sources that inform and perhaps rank higher but who are themselves questionable leaders alienating the wrong people and promoting the wrong people.  Of course, the “right” and “wrong” relates to the mission and values of the organization.   At times one must recognize where the most pivotal shortcomings are as well as their systemic effects.  Sometimes the remedies and corrections are not straight forward but must be implemented within a larger strategy for the good of the organization.  When might it be appropriate to change the vision and mission of an organization and when is it critical to hold onto it at almost any cost?

     A paradigm shift is taking place, but progress is uneven and unpredictable, with much resistance. American physicist and philosopher Thomas Kuhn (1922-1996), the man who coined the term “paradigm” in the 1960s did so in order to describe contexts and frameworks associated with scientific revolutions throughout history. In our time, the revolution pertains to the philosophical and scientific challenge of merging the best of each discipline towards a progressive interdisciplinary synthesis that goes beyond science per se. It is about science recognizing its place and proper role in the scheme of mankind’s development.

We choose our scientific research and define the questions it is supposed to answer.  We establish mission statements for rehabilitating mental illness, often with very specific goals in mind.  What else are we and those we interface with  attempting to establish and accomplish?  The “facts” are going to often be assembled within these paradigms and they may not necessarily reflect the most objective reality – a very remote configuration beyond our grasp. 

At this point in the history and philosophy of science and other related venues, we are often being offered perspectives that suggest reality often accommodates, even resembles in reference to the beliefs, motivations, plans and actions we have.  We influence the pathways of particles, give life or death vibes to plants and even ice crystals.   The lasting impression most of us have is that even the smartest and wisest among us are limited human beings who made excellent cases for their impressions, perceptions, inferences and beliefs.  In virtually every case, the sands of time have worn down at least some of what they offered and often they have been quite forgotten.

How often do we look at the big picture on a philosophical level, really studying and thinking deeply?  How often do we modify or greatly modify our orientations to “adapt” to the expectations of individuals who themselves are not well invested in an optimal mission or purpose in their own leadership?  This book offers a number of windows, as remote as prime matter and as close to home as conscience to better understand and construct a model of ourselves and those we serve — what are we about anyway?  What are we made of and how do we best develop?  What should be our own “developmental agendas” and those we affirm in others?  Who is going to be most interested in what we did a few years after our death?

Many great thinkers in contemporary neurology such as Michael Gazzaniga, author of Who’s in Charge, play to a middle ground in recognizing mind-body perspectives that propose an interface between two domains of being.  He does this by expanding the parameters of “emergence theory” that has traditionally been quite nebulous and somewhat adversarial to recognizing dimensions outside the physical and quantum.  His evident strategy is to give the reader much empirical evidence about the nature of the brain and human decision making within scientific parameters explained through interactive systems theory and offering a blurry olive branch; some semblance of a separate ‘mind’ sustained in whole greater than the sum of its parts.  Though he may signal this is metaphysical or spiritual there is no clear cut alliance with this position.

Gazzaniga appeals to a sustained quantum complexity – akin to recognizing two separate properties in mind-body distinction, but not acknowledging two distinct domains (material and spiritual).  This is known as property dualism rather than substance dualism as traditionally defined by Cartesian theorists.  Cartesian dualism states that man has a body and a soul and each of is composed of a separate substance.  Those with this orientation weigh the value of a neurological theory by the level of accommodation.  Property dualism is a half-mast sail for those who do not want to alienate either side of the Cartesian dualism debate.  Now having made this point, the limitations and problems with Cartesian dualism are addressed in this book – but the remedies do not migrate in the direction of monism or property dualism.  More broadly, coexistence or functional alignment between the animate and inanimate components of being are at the heart of the Three Essence Paradigm (or Theory), a perspective that is developed in this publication.  The nature of this relationship is something that will require many people many years to further explore, expand and clarify.  What can be established from the onset is that the notion of substance, more than the constructs it was meant to cover in Cartesian Dualism must be reexamined for efficacy given certain issues in Western Philosophy and Christian Theology. 

Unfamiliar with the approach of this book, Gazzaniga, primarily a property dualist, explains that the “whole” is greater (and of different status and quality) than the sum of its parts, substitutes the mind for the whole and the parts for components of physiology.   To cap it off, he vaguely alludes to ‘possibly more’ while at the same time elusively allowing room from the scientific community to retain long held, insular, materialist assumptions that some believe should be stripped out to make room for more valid and holistic interdisciplinary models.  At the same time, Gazzaniga avoids explicitly diminishing the merit of orientations of those who see how quantum mechanics opens the door to a more holistic view that may in some manner be construed to incorporate the metaphysical and spiritual essence of humans integrated with their physical nature or body.


Please note that this book contains a “working Glossary” for the reader to glance through before and during reading…

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Developmental Metaphysics: Reframing Medicine and Psychology




As I work to publish Being Becoming: Integrative Paradigms it is becoming evident that Three Essence Theory and other constructs discussed cross a major threshold.  No longer the offspring of any single discipline, they have taken on a unique interdisciplinary quality – “integrative paradigms” in service to Developmental Metaphysics.  This calls for a change in the title:  Being Becoming: Paradigms For Developmental Metaphysics.

Observers may say that advanced phenomenology and at least some forms of existentialism could also be classified as Developmental Metaphysics and they may have a point.  However, I have never encountered material that described these fields in those terms even though that may have been the less than fully conscious intent of some thinkers. Perhaps it is more accurate to say these venues were precursors to Developmental Metaphysics.

I offer Developmental Metaphysics as an emerging subfield set up to integrate select components of various disciplines within the context and nomenclature of Metaphysics and modern Epistemology of Interdisciplinarity.

It is through this corridor that medicine, psychology, social work, occupational therapy, systems theory in business and other venues can be both enriched and guided on a path that is more in sync with the Judeo-Christian foundations of western society.  There is also room for careful and selective integration of experience and knowledge from sources outside this framework that do not contradict the core foundations..

The power of Developmental Metaphysics is its capacity to field an interdisciplinary mission, that is, to tether the less abstract constructs from other disciplines to a higher order of thought developed to guide and sustain them in an optimal way.  This includes nurturing a pedagogical and practice mindset that is not prone to be oppressed by approaches in Philosophy, Science, Medicine and Psychology that discount the existence of realities outside of three dimensions or the need for adequate Ontological, Moral and Spiritual reference.

Conversely, the mission is to create concepts, constructs, theories and paradigms so powerful as to eclipse and subordinate those approaches traditionally imposed by materialists and to selectively supplant them in favor of more holistic and relevant frames of reference.   In addition, Developmental Metaphysics is a sustainable platform to offer improvements to long existing constructs such as Cartesian Dualism in a way which does not throw the baby out with the bathwater.  Soon to be published, Being Becoming: Integrative Paradigms For Developmental Metaphysics” takes on this challenge by offering some new concepts to reconstruct entrenched fabrics no longer amenable to a broader integration helpful to Theology and other disciplines.

In sum, we can begin by contemplating Developmental Metaphysics with the following tenants:

1.  Best understood as a distinctly interdisciplinary field with unique scope and frames of reference.

2.  Requires reference to Ontology. 

3.  Must meet certain litmus tests of reason, cohesion and epistemological integrity.

4.  Requires an understanding of the quest for advanced performance, spiritual, intellectual, social and emotional growth, as well as the rationale supporting aspiration and achievement.

“The word ‘metaphysics’ is derived from a collective title of the fourteen books by Aristotle that we currently think of as making up Aristotle’s Metaphysics. Aristotle himself did not know the word. (He had four names for the branch of philosophy that is the subject-matter of Metaphysics: ‘first philosophy’, ‘first science’, ‘wisdom’, and ‘theology’.) At least one hundred years after Aristotle’s death, an editor of his works (in all probability, Andronicus of Rhodes  titled those fourteen books “Ta meta ta phusika”—“the after the physicals” or “the ones after the physical ones”—the “physical ones” being the books contained in what we now call Aristotle’s Physics.”

van Inwagen, Peter and Sullivan, Meghan. (Spring, 2018). “Metaphysics”, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Edward N. Zalta (ed.).  Retrieved from

Preface: Being Becoming: Integrative Paradigms For Developmental Metaphysics

BEING BECOMING PREFACE (PART I) BEING BECOMING: PARADIGMS FOR DEVELOPMENTAL METAPHYSICS Facebook Linkedin Twitter Richard Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW Few would argue that we do not need to better understand and explain the constitution of our essence, potential and purpose.  The conditions of our existence influence our self-concept and the way our being participates in relationships. 

Read More »

Developmental Metaphysics: Reframing Medicine and Psychology

WHY ONTOLOGY? WAGUESPACK SEMINARS Image already added    FACEBOOK PURCHASE BEING BECOMING Image already added    LINKEDIN NEW LIFE COACHING Image already added    TWITTER ABOUT DR. WAGUESPACK As I work to publish Being Becoming: Integrative Paradigms it is becoming evident that Three Essence Theory and other constructs discussed cross a major threshold.  No longer the offspring of any single discipline,

Read More »

A Reality Check On Commercial Medicine

BEING BECOMING A Reality Check On Commercial Medicine Facebook Linkedin Twitter Richard Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW Gullibility to the claims of medicine especially when attached to commercial interests has been a mainstay of most US consumers for decades.  Perhaps the best place to begin addressing this major cavity is to make it easier for younger people

Read More »

Dialog: On Unbelievably High Opioid Use in the US

Richard S. Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW Welcome to BEING BECOMING, a unique portal  of articles, education and services surrounding the interdisciplinary study of BEING from a Christian perspective!  Visitors can expect to find themes pertaining to Ontology — the philosophical study of the nature of being, becoming and existence.   This work covers interior dynamics of individuals

Read More »

Whose Changing The Meaning?

  Richard S. Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW Welcome to BEING BECOMING, a unique portal  of articles, education and services surrounding the interdisciplinary study of BEING from a Christian perspective!  Visitors can expect to find themes pertaining to Ontology — the philosophical study of the nature of being, becoming and existence.   This work covers interior dynamics of

Read More »


BEING BECOMING CRITIQUE OF DEEPAK CHOPRA’S SO CALLED 17 PRINCIPLES Image already added         After finishing a talk at a recent neurosciences conference in Columbus Ohio (April 29, 2017), Deepak Chopra appeared in a webcast entitled Does the soul have independent existence?  Understand these 17 principles and know the answer for yourself. This man evidently wants

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© 2018 Waguespack Seminars.  Please direct correspondence to Richard S. Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW

A Reality Check On Commercial Medicine


A Reality Check On Commercial Medicine

Richard Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW

Gullibility to the claims of medicine especially when attached to commercial interests has been a mainstay of most US consumers for decades.  Perhaps the best place to begin addressing this major cavity is to make it easier for younger people to witness the health perils of their elders and understand how their lives have been shortened by the false, inflated and misleading claims of “commercial science”.

Physicians Graveling & Blair (2016) in Statin Effects on Muscle and Kidney provide a riveting reality check on statins, the same drugs we thought were too good to be true a couple of decades ago.  They cite a MedWatch record review by Hoffman that 55% percent of those who take Atorvastatin experience muscle problems that can be seriously harmful to overall health.  We are speaking of actual muscle deterioration and disability here.  Many who go off of statins report noticeable improvement soon thereafter.  

In this same article, Graveling and Blair also provide very persuasive evidence from Sissals, et. al. in 2004 that “statins caused the “abrogation of insulin action.””  A number of studies after this time validated this alarm but many others confirmed the myths and falsehood promoted by Big Pharma. Still, the prescribing habits of most physicians did not generally change a large amount until the study of Cederberg, et. al. (2015).

Here, the medical community became visibly alarmed to know: “Our population-based METSIM study including 8,749 non-diabetic individuals at baseline showed that statin therapy was associated with a 46% increase in the risk of incident diabetes after adjustment for confounding factors.”  The article goes on to address renal failure, genetic polymorphisms and other maladies highly correlated with statins.

A radical example of the vestiges of medicinal practitioners trapped in wrongful delivery of healthcare can be found in a recent article (with outstanding video) from Dr. Mercola (2016), Atrocious State of Cancer Treatment in the U.S.   It is here that he points out along with thousands of other authorities that practitioners in oncology are in bondage to very limited protocols for treatment and unable to exercise their own best judgment in using their minds to evaluate all the prospective treatments out there and recommending and facilitating the best ones, including cocktails containing numerous agents known for their curative properties.  Often drug companies, boards and other entities put great pressure on physicians to abandon effective treatments in favor of prescribing new expensive drugs that are often inferior to known treatments, many of which are very inexpensive.

Due to regulatory red tape, drug-company greed, failures in the scientific process and lack of a universal will to do what’s best for each and every patient, modern cancer care fails an unacceptable percentage of the time. As Albert Einstein said, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. This describes modern cancer treatment in a nutshell (Marcela, 2016).

Mercola goes on the point out how thinking cancer patients today simply cannot naively trust their doctor but must do their own research and seek out treatments they deem best. He gives a number of examples of cancer survivors who discover effective drugs used outside the United States with great success.  He also provides great strategies for food consumption, avoiding toxins and stressors, sleep and exercise.  He gave the example of Ben Williams, Ph.D., professor emeritus of Experimental Psychology at University of California, San Diego, who no one predicted to live.  “He should be one of the statistics — 1 of the more than 15,000 people who die from glioblastoma multiforme in the U.S. every year.1”

Williams book Surviving Terminal Cancer: Clinical Trials, Drug Cocktails, and Other Treatments Your Oncologist Won’t Tell You About, details the multi-faceted strategy he used to overcome the disease. You can hear him tell his story first-hand in the film Surviving Terminal Cancer. At one interval he describes a mushroom extract that’s used routinely to treat cancer in Japan. It has zero toxicity, but it’s not even mentioned in the U.S.”

The presentation goes on to explain that once a patent expires on a drug, it’s potential to rake in major profits plummets. Drug companies typically put them aside in favor of newer, more profitable pursuits. The bottom line is those who can research multiple options for treatment do well to follow their inclinations.

How can we fail to draw the conclusion that we must approach our education and health care with holistic agendas that consider relevant insights, findings and knowledge from a wide range of sources? With so much technology before us and more on the way, we need not just a moral compass, but one that fathoms spiritual, metaphysical and quantum reality that supports participation in life with a viable and sustainable philosophy of being in Being.

We have to pay careful attention to what credible critics have to say about allopathic, osteopathic, integrative medicine and CAM and to make appropriate adjustments in accordance with our best spiritual sensitivities, intuition, conscience and reasonable objectives. There are some beliefs and practices that should never be accepted and others should be considered with caution and restraint.

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Preface: Being Becoming: Integrative Paradigms For Developmental Metaphysics

BEING BECOMING PREFACE (PART I) BEING BECOMING: PARADIGMS FOR DEVELOPMENTAL METAPHYSICS Facebook Linkedin Twitter Richard Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW Few would argue that we do not need to better understand and explain the constitution of our essence, potential and purpose.  The conditions of our existence influence our self-concept and the way our being participates in relationships. 

Read More »

Developmental Metaphysics: Reframing Medicine and Psychology

WHY ONTOLOGY? WAGUESPACK SEMINARS Image already added    FACEBOOK PURCHASE BEING BECOMING Image already added    LINKEDIN NEW LIFE COACHING Image already added    TWITTER ABOUT DR. WAGUESPACK As I work to publish Being Becoming: Integrative Paradigms it is becoming evident that Three Essence Theory and other constructs discussed cross a major threshold.  No longer the offspring of any single discipline,

Read More »

A Reality Check On Commercial Medicine

BEING BECOMING A Reality Check On Commercial Medicine Facebook Linkedin Twitter Richard Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW Gullibility to the claims of medicine especially when attached to commercial interests has been a mainstay of most US consumers for decades.  Perhaps the best place to begin addressing this major cavity is to make it easier for younger people

Read More »

Dialog: On Unbelievably High Opioid Use in the US

Richard S. Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW Welcome to BEING BECOMING, a unique portal  of articles, education and services surrounding the interdisciplinary study of BEING from a Christian perspective!  Visitors can expect to find themes pertaining to Ontology — the philosophical study of the nature of being, becoming and existence.   This work covers interior dynamics of individuals

Read More »





     After finishing a talk at a recent neurosciences conference in Columbus Ohio (April 29, 2017), Deepak Chopra appeared in a webcast entitled Does the soul have independent existence?  Understand these 17 principles and know the answer for yourself.

This man evidently wants you the listener to learn, understand and build your orientation towards his notions of being and existence, by visiting and revisiting “17 principles” — “until you get all of them”.  He appears to assume such ‘axioms’ in their current form are suitable for ‘definitive teaching’ in psychology, philosophy, various parts of medicine and other areas.  I don’t think so!

     My purpose is not to completely discredit Deepak who has earned a reputation in neurosciences and related venues, but to share real concerns about serious shortcomings that are present in his public oratory on the ‘architecture of being’.  I feel duty bound to address the  apparent misapprehensions and errors in these so called “principles” promoted in this video.     

     Of course, few matters, especially those in this complex realm can be dismissed in a thoroughly black and white way.  It takes a lot of knowledge to even attempt such a platform.  Some of his ideas provide insight and some manner of reference and relative validity.   However, I did not  find any of them to rise to the level of pedagogy he evidently presumes.  There are serious limitations and problems here.

     In spite of finding problems with Deepak’s presentation, in a sense I am glad that he was willing to go out on a limb to expose the full gamut of his ‘systemic thinking’.  Sometimes when ideas can be dealt with in a straight forward way they are seen for what they are.

     It is often by correcting error that improvements can be produced.  So, perhaps such a work provides a framework for others in Ontology and relate disciplines to develop better epistemological frameworks suited to guide the basis of interdisciplinary  collaboration.  By doing so, an individual like Chopra opens the door to third parties such as myself to offer qualified criticism which I think a substantial number of readers will find valuable.  My goal is to dissuade some from ever investing time and effort in the wrong venue and to help others who may be confused about such matters to think a bit clearer – to find more productive pathways of inquiry.

     For starters, I believe it reasonable for anyone listening to this video and drawn to this field to make some distinctions — to name and frame the most pivotal points and attempt to determine the relative status of specific components of the presentation, acknowledging areas of limited merit and  identifying others that are very problematic. 

     A more correct name for these 17 proposals  might be ‘scaffolds’ that should either be ignored or be processed for responsible and competent revision.  They reflect Deepak’s current disposition (state of consciousness) complete with certain penchants and  uneven expertise in a variety of disciplines. One day he might have better insights and publicly critique them himself.

     There are significant drawbacks and consequences attached to at least half of these so called principles.  The epistemological and ontological problems should certainly should be well explained with the scrutiny of peers and colleagues rather than “followers”. 

     In his Prologue “On Being and Essence” (DE ENTE Et ESSENTIA) Thomas Aquinas stated the following:

     “A small error at the outset can lead to great errors in the final  conclusions, as the Philosopher says in I De Caelo et Mundo cap. 5 (271b8-13), and thus, since being and essence are the things first conceived of by the intellect, as Avicenna says in Metaphysicae I, cap. 6, in order to avoid errors arising from ignorance about these two things, we should resolve the difficulties surrounding them by explaining what the terms being and essence each signify and by showing how each may be found in various things and how each is related to the logical intentions of genus, species, and difference.”             

      What Aquinas wishes to convey is that the notions of being and essence require conceptual grounding on the nature of BOTH sense perception and rational reflection.   At this juncture, it is worth asserting a counter premise worth considering:   No systemic platform on being can be considered holistic without substantial integration with the classical notions of essence, potency and act (actuality). 

     On the other hand, the popularized notion of “consciousness” has many limitations especially if generated outside a trustworthy context.  When someone repeatedly utilizes this concept as a philosophical fixture to tie together an authoritative systemic explanation of being while omitting key building blocks prescribed by one of the greatest expert to have ever lived, we ought to take notice and wonder about the dangers of hubris.

     Possibly useful terminology in these 17 items includes the notion of “rudimentary emotions” which if defined well may be helpful IF developed in a frame that included adequate treatment of non rudimentary emotions. Also, the notion of “construct” if well defined and operationalized in reference to related representations is worthy of being weighed as part of Ontology nomenclature.

     My biggest objection to Chopra’s 17 constructs arises from a fundamental disagreement with his apparent reincarnation assumption which to greater or lesser degree impairs the validity of his scaffolds, beginning at least as early as number 13 and serving the domino effect on the remaining items.  It is from at least this point onward that the blocks move into entropy with major errors and gaps. 

     I will use the category ‘merit’ to quantify and qualify my impressions of  validity of each representation’ within a balanced “interdisciplinary perspective”.  A number scale of 1-100 will assign a number 1 to note “lowest validity” and 100 to qualify highest validity to each of the 17 scaffolds or “principles”. 

     An explanation of my reasoning may include acknowledgment of partial merit of some items while also explaining its drawbacks.
Below are the 17 principles identified verbatim from Deepak’s webcast.  

     Principle 1: “Consciousness is how we know any experience”.  He explains that without consciousness there is no experience.  Merit Rank 80. 

     In my way of thinking, consciousness is a set of variables that help organize a holistic assessment of experience, our reflection on it and our anticipation of how being is oriented towards future engagement in ‘the world’.  It is based on much more than raw perception and rudimentary emotions.

     We have an unconscious and subconscious which impact how we know experience.  Further, we have degrees of sensation which affect our overall being which do not necessarily register into consciousness.  Of course Chopra could probably explain these variables in a satisfactory way if questioned. Also, it may not particularly helpful to be overly exacting about narrow or broad definitions of consciousness at this stage of the overview which addresses a set of other variables that are truly wrongful. 

Principle 2:  “All experiences are modifications of core consciousness or pure awareness.”  Merit Rank 60-95 depending on possible qualifications.  

     One does well to examine #13 and #14 scaffolds to understand how this Tabula Rasa premise is applied.  Chopra does not build his paradigm in a way that focuses on the relation of essence to consciousness or adequately relates “modifications of core consciousness” or “pure awareness” to an indivisible and  holistic notion of being.  This scaffold, especially when burdened by the notion of “modifications of core consciousness” without making adequate distinctions about consciousness and its relationship to key concepts presents a framework subject to entropy rather than optimal integration.  

     Classical questions regarding innate a priori knowledge vs knowledge acquired by experience (a posteriori knowledge) apply.  My forthcoming book, Being Becoming: Interdisciplinary Theory,  examines the notion of “core essence” and our emerging awareness of it in relation to other essence(s) which  could might help define various notions of consciousness including Chopra’s “core consciousness” in a more satisfactory way than what progresses from this scaffold in the entries to follow.  

     In the 21st century, though it may have some type of meaning and value in certain areas of psychology and spirituality, the idea of “pure awareness” comes up in a wide range of contexts which present major epistemological issues.  Still, this issue alone should not disqualify its use, but might also hallmark the potential for abuse and misalignment.

While some  prominent 18th and 19 century philosophers such as American Transcendentalists such as Emerson and Thoreau or psychologist-philosopher  William James may attempted to illustrate a similar frame or adjacent realities or used similar or antidotal expressions (i.e. Jame’s pure experience), they worked very hard to justify and develop the foundations within a well developed  schema.  They offered intellectual or poetic constructs, often reinforced with with substantial missive background, considerable research and public writing as well as pressure for clarification under scrutiny.

     At a minimum, Chopra owes it to his reader to explain how 20th century phenomenology affects modern conceptualizations that generally differentiate ideas such as  ‘pure awareness’ from normal experience and capacity for understanding objective reality.  He might reply that is the point. 

Nevertheless there are major burdens in our capacity to recognize and frame an experience like ‘pure apprehension’ that have been very much covered for over a century in the field of phenomenology.  There is an entire nomenclature built around the assumption that there is no such thing as “pure awareness” because of the limitations of our perspective. 

If Chopra was really motivated to pay the dues necessary to gain a handle on being and consciousness, he might examine Edith Stein’s Finite and Eternal Being and related commentaries.  She was both a mystic and an intellectual who sought the bridge the gap between phenomenology and scholasticism.  Consequently, she came to understood being and awareness from many perspectives, including those might be loosely grouped together as “pure awareness”

A concept such as “Gestalt Awareness” might be substituted for pure awareness, but probably not not.  Such a paradigm but would probably imply common ground with pure awareness but would require most distinctions and recognize more  ramifications than those constructs Chopra appears most comfortable acknowledging.  

     Principle 3:  “Humans create constructs around raw experience and then assign a name to them.”  Merit Rank 80-90. 

     Though we gain insight into being by the way human beings experience the outside world, we cannot rely on constructs created to name raw experience to define the nature of our being.  Still, this is a pretty good point for establishing pathways of documented insight into being.

     Perhaps Deepak would be willing to qualify what he means by “raw experience”.  I believe he is on to something here as indicated in remarks in number two, but would suggest that in order to be holistic, we need other categories to frame and name besides  “raw experiences” per se.  

     Reflections on experience and volition involved in decisions which affect awareness, states of being, development and relationships aside from raw experience and our attempt to supply generalized conceptualizations of it are included in a list of other major categories which must be considered when working synthesis such as this.  Especially in the last two sections of my course Being and Systems one can learn about some pre and post and engaged (present moment) phenomenological constructs’ to categorize venues of orientation (observed and willed states of consciousness and orientation within different postures towards system(s) [in environment or world].   If you are reading this and plan to take the course and not a licensed mental health professional, simply insert “44” into registration form where license and license number are required. 

     Principle 4: “Constructs created science, technology, art, religion and civilization.”  Merit Rank 70.  

     Perhaps better put, on one level we have used and continue to use “constructs” to “create” viable science, technology, art, religion and civilization.  However, it seems a bit reductionist and primitive to assign the isolated term “constructs” to explain more advanced revelation in some categories, especially those pertaining to religion and revelations of Christianity.  

    Chopra would probably suggest that “pure awareness” is ‘being without constructs’ — something that his own religion or belief system is uniquely qualified to address.  Though I believe he is wrong, he has a complex basis for attempting to establish ‘perishable being as his unnamed, disposable appendage of a higher consciousness — a construct of “constructs”.  

     Going further, excessive reliance on the notion of static “constructs” rather than more, open, broader and dynamic frames of reference such as theories, models and paradigms suggests a highly questionable investment in preserving this frame to more easily partition off and jettison with as he develops the remaining scaffolds.

Do our notions about being reconstruct and expand when we substitute deeper, fuller  and more complex references of awareness and experience for an overload of “constructs” assembled in response to “raw experience”?  A deep sense of linguistic syntax, logic and semantics (though perhaps not absolutely definitive) seems to indicate that multiple constructs are compiled into theory but not so much that multiple theories fit into constructs.  On face value we tend to view the expression of constructs as a unit that contains multiple concepts but not multiple theories.

What does it say about unified and integrated being if we instead declare that we routinely fortify our sense of being in the world with theories (containing multiple constructs) which in turn are assembled into paradigms (multiple theories) and that we further fortify our being with intuitive and formal beliefs as well as the products of faith, revelation and our response to it over time as a developing person.  This collective disposition and state of being emerges out of many kinds of insights and revelations; enriched by modes of experience and reflections, including learning about and participating in religious and spiritual practices that draw us into greater union with God and his will for essential good in the world.  

Of course a more expansive understanding of unified, integrated and indivisible being, makes it much more difficult to disarm the ‘constructed’ straw man to emerge more and more as the 17 constructs unravel.  Ultimately it appears Deepak is quite careless with contemporary standards of epistemology and logic as he attempts to promote base ‘principles’ to describe being in ways which lend some level of plausibility and authority to “the steps” and positions that ensure “being” will fit into the portals prepared for them to fit in towards the end. 

Principle 5:  “The most fundamental constructs are mind, brain, body, world, cosmos.”  Merit Rank 60-90. 

     There is some justification for saying this, except that “cosmos” for many relates to the interface of theoretical physics with highly personalized if not idiosyncratic conceptions of the universe which includes all sorts of aberrations such as space time portals, synchronicity, multiverses and the like.  The cosmos is an ideal place for Deepak to “attend” and promote as an open ended manifold to contain the wildest penchants his followers may imagine in his latest book “You are The Universe”.

    Though there is certainly a significant place for the various branches of physics to be weighed in our assessment of being, there is also an escapist cultural penchant that tends to double up on this modality, expand it in unwarranted ways and give inadequate space for other domains, including spirituality.  The fact that we understand physics to have much interface with “metaphysics” or dimensions outside our familiar three dimensional cube does not equalize it with authentic spirituality which is much more a definitive feature  of being and its development.  Yes, there are conduits where various domains seem to interface such as the phenomenon of Masuro Emoto’s ice crystals, but it is worth mentioning that Emoto himself was not formally educated as a scientist, he certainly had an interdisciplinary orientation.

     The remaining ‘constructs’ of mind, brain, body and world, are basically standard fixtures in the venue of Ontology, Philosophy of Human Nature, Philosophy of Mind, Phenomenology, and allied fields.  However, one must be alert to the forthcoming slight of hand Deepak plays with the notion of mind, which for many is a fundamentally different substance (animate or ethereal and contained in the soul) than the brain (physical).  For Deepak, the notion of mind seems to be a transitory pea placed under different cups at different times because though he may make gestures towards Cartesian distinctions of substance, consistent adherence does not play particularly well with the conception of being he attempts to promote in this presentation. 

I believe the “constructs” of essence and potential in being as well as the dynamics of potency and act are critical fixtures in bridging the gap in discussions about mind-brain and soul-body dynamics.  To miss this is to miss a lot and to basically disqualify a synthesis from producing principles that rise to the level of axiomatic status.  

     Principle 6:  “When we experience sensations, images, feelings and thoughts, we give it the name mind.”  Merit Rank 40-85 depending on what qualifications Deepak might offer if questioned.

     There are some scientists and philosophers who speak of lower mind (or brain in some schema) and higher mind (or brain for monists) with distinctly different capacities within the framework of being.  I do not think Chopra finds these distinctions convenient for developing his current model because they may necessitate a broader, more abstract conception of the collective mind and its overall status in the domain of being.  On the other hand, he could use such distinctions to refine his theory of being and include more of an intact mind to remain with being as it departs from the body.

     At first blush, Deepak seems to believes in (or allows the reader to build into a mainstream conduit he can redirect) a Cartesian two substance paradigm which is mostly compatible with Christian Theology and Philosophy.  Namely, the soul (and its consciousness) is an entirely separate substance than the body which it departs from at death.   I certainly agree with this aspect of his thought if he can verify he really believes it.  However, as mentioned, in later postulates he appears to approach mind as a “property dualist” rather than “substance dualist” (my book offers a more acceptable noun than “dualist”) which means he does not consistently recognize [brain/body] — [mind/soul] as separate substances.  He appears to find affinity with an amorphous “being” that survives the body after death as a separate substance without form or even definitive cohesion that largely leaves mind (as most westerners understand it) behind.

     Historically, from at least from the time of Plato and Aristotle, mind was the first frame of reference for a consciousness that survived the body after death.  The notion of soul also existed and over time, it became clearer in the thoughts of many that the mind resided in the soul and that it was an inseparable component of it.  

Principle 6 because expresses the construct of mind in an epiphenomenal way, namely the mind emerges from our awareness of and assessment of sensations and experience.  It could be that Deepak intends this bottom up quasi monist perspective to offer a primordial definition of mind which also supports a contemporary two or three substance phenomenology but one that attempts to align brain and mind together as a substance or substances separable from “being” (though ‘pure awareness’ survives the body after death in some manner). 

     There is no question that most with a near death experience report a heightened awareness after death, so I do not wish to unduly disqualify the notion of “pure awareness”, only suggest than it is only one transitory dimension of being and certainly not being per se.  In this life it is largely potential, perhaps a component of essence actualized in certain peak or transformative experiences.  In the next life our current understanding of potential will be different because much of it will be actualized in a transformed state of being which we cannot fathom in great detail until we actually experience it in real life.

     It does seem there is at least one other possible representation, existing or in potential for coinage for this assembly.  Portions may be found  in the nomenclature of Physiology combined with some bridge concept in  Phenomenology, Ontology,  Philosophy of Mind or Psychology.  We may be due for a concept that bridges the gap between “pure awareness” and other states of consciousness that are relegated to normal experience.

     Why might there be a need for this?  Such a framework, provided it places “pure awareness” in a correct context, including the awareness of God vs the awareness of man, might open the door for many  other distinctions as well.
It should be pointed out that many of Deepak’s mainstream contemporaries in this and similar venues believe in a strictly bottom up interpretation of the building blocks of consciousness.  They are mostly either monists or property dualists.  Unlike Deepak, they do not see either his understanding of being that survives the body after death or the soul as a substance that is clear and distinct, of a different nature than the body.  In a sense he pays lip service to their physicalist, evidenced based demands for explaining consciousnesses in a way which property dualists will probably accept, at least on face value – basically equating consciousness with the mind and mind with the brain or nervous system in its entirety. 

     The issue, as earlier established, is that the mind itself is a spiritual substance with a priori features that limit the scope of the Tabula Rasa perspective. It does not emerge from experience though it’s actualized potential within its essence(s) surely does. Deepak may not argue with this.  But if such is the case, then why offer such a representation as a “principle” rather than as an incomplete explanation, a scaffold geared to facilitate common ground between frameworks advocating one vs two substances (or possibly three substances).

Principle 7: “When we experience the brain, body, world and cosmos, we give it the name external perceptions.”  Merit Rank 80  depending on some qualifications which only Deepak can provide.

     How might Deepak explain and effectively distinguish “internal perceptions”?  He appears to place external perceptions in a very broad schema here and presumably places internal perceptions in a very limited scope of being.   Where does he place mind in this schema?

     Neurologist David Eagleman suggests in Incognito and other books / interviews, that we are able to understand very little about what is happening within our brain and much of what it regulates in the body because most of its functions are “under the hood”, below the threshold of awareness though it may affect overall well being and consciousness.  Perhaps this is why Deepak suggests that what little we experience of ‘the whole’ which includes the brain, our awareness is superficial or “external”.  It could be that compared to the soul within the body (or some reduced concept of being), the body is “external”, but many contemporary thinkers see very indistinct divisions between “internal and” “external” (a construct Chopra has taken great liberty with here) in such ideas as “the heart”.    

     Modern psychology recognizes depersonalization and derealization as mental health problems that suppress normal development and impairment to resiliency, the recovery and growth of the self.  Jumping ahead to the utterances in #13 and#14, it is “alleged” that Deepak is setting the stage for his listener to accept a depersonalized understanding of the ‘phenomenology of self’– moving away from a central integration of person to a fragmented portion of self relegated to the auspices of “core consciousness” or “pure awareness” divorced from other aspects of being.

     Principle 8:  “Names and descriptions are language constructs that nail down raw experience.”  Merit Rank 85-90.

   Okay.  Best understood within the context of the other scaffolds.

Principle 9:   “A baby’s raw experience is sensory; sight, sound, touch, taste and smell, along with pleasure and pain.”  Merit Rank 80-90.

     Especially in recent years, there has been much disagreement about the level of consciousness and quality of volition of infants.  However, many prominent thinkers in Aristotelian and Platonic traditions including Scholastic philosophers through the middle 20th century operated with the philosophical premise of tabula rasa (blank slate) to explain infant consciousness in attempt to develop ideas within an a posteriori  framework. 

     Sadly, this is one of the most disputed claims in Scholastic philosophy, something that contemporary thinkers in this vein (and others) often do not accept on face value or most often accept only as an incomplete theoretical vein, convenient for constructing certain points.   Since Chopra qualified his position with the term “raw experience” we might be generous in our interpretation of his awareness of this issue and many others surrounding. 
 What is more difficult to understand are other distinctions he may have made outside this video which is what is examined in this article.

Principle 10:  “The attraction or aversion of experience is rudimentary emotions.”  Merit Rank 90. 

     In some circles this might be a very good place to start a discussion about philosophy of human nature as well as the relationship between emotion and experience.  However, I suggest Deepak and those following this post read or reread Robert Solomon’s works such as The Passions, Emotions are Judgements or True to Our Feelings to address this potential principle on a deeper level with enough import for optimal systemic integration within a broader constellation of concepts in an authoritative synthesis. 

Principle 11:  “The interpretation of sense perceptions is thought.”  Merit Rank 80.  Much better to say that one aspect of thought is the interpretation of sense perception. 

    If Deepak disagrees with this recommendation for adjustment, then the Merit Rank goes down to 20.

Principle 12:  “Without these human constructs, reality is just consciousness in various modes of itself, not yet labeled as sense perceptions, thoughts, emotions, etc.”  Merit Rank 70-90. 

     Without adjustments to both scaffold 10 and 11, it appears we are on another path of thought entropy.  However, the notion of “constructs” is perhaps a good way to describe ‘qualia of thought’.  Without such a deep, unwarranted bow to the property dualists thought modalities,  Deepak would do well to make some more distinctions here, including some attempt at reconciling a priori and a posteriori paradigms.  Without explaining the scope of his interpretation about the magnitude of sense perception within “thought” generally, it is difficult to make a precise judgement about the merit of this suggested principle.

Principle 13: “The real reality is ‘being’ which is existence and awareness.  (Merit Rank – first component ’80 plus’ depending on supplemental qualifications) “It is timeless, formless, without dimension.”  (Merit Rank 20).

There is more to being than awareness, but Deepak arguably has this base covered with the concept of “existence”.  Absent a discussion of the relationship between potential and essence in being, it is difficult to know what Deepak means by “existence”. 

     It appears that Deepak characterized the nature of being (which I understand as states of the soul within being which includes the body or its morphic form.  The soul perhaps extends with some limits to some domain outside of the body in a way which appears to not fathom the full potential of prime matter which is generally understood as a component of being (or person) requiring a combination of prime matter (animate and inanimate) and form to warrant a classification of human being.  

     Key here is the fact that St. Thomas and virtually all scholastic thinkers have insisted that the identity of a human is tied to the soul manifesting within a unique and distinct carnation or physical identity, even if only for a few minutes before dying (i.e. the union of sperm and egg that begins to develop into a zygote is a fully constituted foundation to assign the identity of a unique human being).  We are human and unique because of this foundation.  After the body dies, the soul represents that unique soul-carnation eternally and exclusively.  Without this prerequisite condition, we are not speaking of a human being but something  nonhuman, imaginary or extraordinarily speculative (or heretical).

     Even further, from the time of Aristotle onward, most thinkers in Greco-Judaeo-Christian traditions including almost all Scholastic and even Muslim thinkers understood the soul to be roughly the same shape as the body.  This is not to exclude the notion of extension as expressed by ancient Roman thinker Plotinus and moderns such as Chalmers and Sheldrake. In sum, such people would say the body is in the soul but not visa versa.  In this characterization, the soul has more expansive occupancy of space (as well as time) than the body.  These ideas at their root still generally adhere in some manner to classical concepts of form. 

     Those such as Chopra who say the soul or being  is “timeless, formless and without dimension” occupy a very problematic position that runs against many western and Christian concepts, constructs, theories and paradigms — as well as much contemporary evidence, including large catalogs of reports surrounding  individualistic near death experiences of people who participated in a context that included a sense of form corresponding to a body albeit in another dimension.

     The Merit Rank of 30 rather than 0 for the second component is offered in generous concession to the idea of mystery and the ethereal nature of near death experiences.   In some vague sense, though the individuals in this process are not formless, timeless and without dimension, they may sense they are entering into a new dimension that seems to have a sense of infinity, timelessness and in some respects, flexible dimensionality.  Of course they are persons WITH FORM in a situation that may have characteristics of formlessness, timelessness and perhaps some lack of “dimensionality”.
The merit rank of 30 for the second component is offered in concession in spite of the fact that the teachings of the top two world religions do not accept reincarnation. 

     In addition, according to recent Pew study, the category of “no religion” was the third largest category of religion in the world, after Christians and Muslims.   According to the Huffington Post article, “The “unaffiliated” category covers all those who profess no religion, from atheists and agnostics to people with spiritual beliefs but no link to any established faith.”  We must also take into account that probably the majority in the unaffiliated category represents people from eastern countries who may or may not believe in God but who have no alliance to any religion.  As a group far fewer believe in reincarnation than those identifying as in Buddhist and Hindus.

     To offer a universal principle in ontology or related discipline based on a religious belief of reincarnation into a different identity is problematic because if it is WRONG, which I believe it certainly is, the dangers to those who short change their their callings in life with the thought they can always start over in another incarnation on earth fundamentally diminishes the potential and value of their existence and possibly places them in danger of negative eternal consequences as taught by several major world religions participating in the realities of Judeo Christian revelation and the expectations of God and communities in heaven and on earth. 

     Instead, Chopra offers an end of life ‘eschatology’ that “human consciousness” or “being” can anticipate losing their form and being   cast asunder within a cosmic soup which will somehow participate in the consciousness of another creation in some respect.  Perhaps this will be part of the production of yet another person (or perhaps even an animal or bug). He leaves some doubt about the divisibility or indivisibility of the “existence” in question, both before and after the transition away from the body. 

     Of course, Christians believe in a “reincarnation” of sorts — those judged worth of eternal life enter into a “glorified” body that accentuates, not fragments being, complete with the actualized essence(s) of earthly being.  With a magnanimous orientation, the enlightened Christian may  offer an explanation for the sustained belief of reincarnation across a number of ‘major world cultures’.   In brief, such a  notion, broadly, is that “being reincarnates” represents a ‘primordial awareness’ of a reality that Christians and others believe.  

There is extensive revelation that Christian’s possess — the  reality that the elect soul inherits a unique and highly individualistic personalized glorified body in eternity.  A distorted fragmentation of the belief that being (if accepted into heaven) at some point reincarnates into a glorified body of the same identity. 

     Shadows of this understanding can be found in religions that have produced a wide variety of interpretations for reincarnation that are far outside the Christian paradigm.  The result is a mindset that reduces one’s humanity to some type of nebulous “consciousness” subject to all manner of change in identity and even permanent fragmentation. 

     Principle 14: “The rest, everything else; mind, body, brain, etc., is consciousness modified as forms and phenomena, bound in time and space.”  Merit Rank 30.   

     Here we see a clear confirmation that Deepak leaves the notion of the human person as being with a long term, integrated immortal existence behind.  It appears here that he confirms a destructive and false notion that our unique formation and identity are bound in time and space but that the “being” surrounding them is not and they will be ‘dismembered’ or ‘disempowered’.  The separated being is not bound in time and space as the body, mind and brain as consciousness modified as forms and phenomena. I suppose he believes some type of “unmodified consciousness” is the portion of being that survives into some type of soup of consciousness utilized on some nebulous process of creation and reorganization.

     If this scaffold #14 is interpreted logically as a proposition developed from number 13, Chopra evidently wishes to divorce “being” from “everything else” including mind, body, brain.  However, in evaluating earlier “principles” I generously interpreted Chopra  as accepting the mind as a spiritual substance as distinct from the physical substance of the body.  However, on face value, it appears here he wishes to separate a spiritual species of being from mind in spite of accepting mind as a distinctly spiritual substance.  Maybe there is something I am missing here, but it would require Deepak himself to either accept this interpretation or clarify some other position.

     I am also confused about the most central feature — how Deepak views the relationship of “consciousness” to being.  Maybe he is also confused. It does seem that “consciousness” as earlier established overlaps the entities as he later divides.

     Also confusing is Chopra’s almost random introduction of the term “form”, especially in relation to “consciousness”.  The notion of form is covered in Being Becoming Volume I: Interdisciplinary Theory.

     One must ask explicitly, does Chopra see “consciousness modified” as separate or separable from ‘unmodified consciousness’ of being?  Evidently he does, but he should answer this himself.  If the answer is “yes”, what portion of being in this scenario is no longer bound by unified awareness (or developmental insights pertaining to a distinct identity) after death?  He seems to suggest it is that portion of self that he deems confined to time and space as distinct from “pure awareness”.

     Is Deepak’s notion of ‘eternal being’ or soul adequate  –or akin to vague and reduced  pre Aristotelian, Homeric understanding (do search “Homer” in Lorenz Hendrik’s Encyclopedia of Philosophy article) Ancient Theories of the Soul.  “Homer never says that anyone does anything in virtue of, or with, their soul, nor does he attribute any activity to the soul of a living person. Thus, though the presence or absence of soul marks out a person’s life, it is not otherwise associated with that life.”  Homer identified the existence of the soul but attributed very little too it.  When a person died, the soul left the body and found itself in a very limited, grey state of existence.  To begin anew, perhaps Deepak might wish to review how western culture progressed and see how its foundational understandings might be applied to his list of constructs:

Adopting a bird’s-eye view of the terrain that we will be covering, and setting many details aside for the moment, we can describe it as follows. From comparatively humble Homeric beginnings, the word ‘soul’ undergoes quite remarkable semantic expansion in sixth and fifth century usage. By the end of the fifth century — the time of Socrates’ death — soul is standard thought and spoken of, for instance, as the distinguishing mark of living things, as something that is the subject of emotional states and that is responsible for planning and practical thinking, and also as the bearer of such virtues as courage and justice.  (Hendrick, October 23, 2003).


On the other hand, in Greece, the earliest philosophical essays took on materialistic tones, reflecting ‘pre-philosophic’ notions of Homer (8th century BC) and early Greek religion. “In Homer, while the distinction of soul and body is recognized, the soul is hardly conceived as possessing a substantial existence of its own. Severed from the body, it is a mere shadow, incapable of energetic life” (Maher and Bolland, 1912)

Principle 15:  “Forms and phenomena rise and fall in an eternal now.” Merit Rank 15-40

Quite confusing, yet may be tied to certain conduits cautiously discussed in philosophy and science.  Thus far I had the impression Deepak believed that the soul existed though, when separated from the body became formless (or was it always formless in his schema – merely occupying the body without form?)  

     In the beginning of this video, Chopra insists that if one did not understand to go back and review in order to “get it”.  Maybe he is saying that the constantly changing and emerging “eternal now” conveys and disintegrates forms in some cosmic process just as easily as phenomena fade away.  However, even when considered from naturalistic perspective, as in Rupert Sheldrake’s theory of morphic fields and morphic resonance, phenomena attached to material existence emerges and recedes with formative memory. 

     The “eternal now” is tied to a perpetual flow of forms and phenomena, which as David Bohm would indicate, manifest from implicative (potential) to explicative (actual) orders.  It seems Deepak would be more consistent and be doing himself a favor if he explicitly recognized the status of form more explicitly in time and space as well as other dimensions associated with the afterlife of humans. 

     Substance is both physical and nonphysical as indicated in Cartesian dualism.  Understanding the soul as existing with form would be a very important step here. 

     When Chopra’s “forms and phenomenon” “rise and fall”, what is mean by this?  While it seems he means that “everything” (forms and phenomena) rise into existence and then passes out of it, Chopra, in keeping with Buddhism advocates for the eternal nature of “formless” “substance” associated with human beings that survives after death.  However, he has a very ‘amorphous‘ understanding of what this is all about.

Principle 16:  “Devoid of all constructs, we are eternal, timeless awareness recycling in space-time as the experience of form and phenomena.”  Merit Rank 5. 

     It appears that Deepak believes that ultimately we are or become “timeless awareness” without distinct constructs of thought per se.  As I indicated in commentary on Principle 7, depersonalization and derealization is a mental illness. 

     Now it may be that Chopra believes that it cannot be helped, that we might as well make adjustments and get used to it because this is “reality” and we need to adjust to it.  He believes this enough to offer 17 principles pointing to these “endpoints”, in my view, a conscious accommodation of a sterile Buddhist philosophy, but vague enough for plausible deniability.

Principle 17:  “Anything that can be named or described from particles to galaxies, DNA to the genome, from mind to brain, world to cosmos, is a human construct.”  Merit Rank 50-70 depending on how certain variables on this repetitive theme are qualified.  Chopra explains: “Constructs are derived from modes of knowing and experience in consciousness, which is modifications of awareness in awareness.” Merit Rank 50-70. 

It appears that Deepak stays faithful to the notion of “pure awareness” here though it is not explicitly restated.  It is difficult to know what he means by “modifications of awareness in awareness”. It may be reaching for another level of abstraction here, but the epistemological connections are very unclear.

If Deepak intends to confine the concept of “anything” to physical reality and “bottom up” phenomenon arising from it, then perhaps he may have a somewhat viable, yet still problematic and construct burdened by many limitations in representing the human experience.  However, if he wishes to imply that the metaphysical or abstract dimensions of math and physics, and especially the metaphysical and spiritual dimensions of Theology and Philosophy are either not real or exclusively bottom up manifestations, not top down or not true modes of knowing and experience in consciousness, then we have a MAJOR PROBLEM. 

     If these realities are real and worthy of inclusion, then by their nature, they will have a very significant systemic role which Deepak evidently does not acknowledge in his cosmology of being. Overlooking pathways to critique Chopra’s poetic attempts at integration towards the end of this presentation —  by expanding the notion of water, noting a variety of constructs / manifestations complied into “a watery nest” as the “essence of all experience” “as a never changing constant” (the language of science),  I will withhold comment and move towards closure on a positive note.

      In the later part of his presentation, Chopra announces that “everything is qualia except being”.  He appears here to have stumbled into advancing a Thomistic or scholastic position — that the soul is animate, not material.  Modern day adherents would add, not qualia not even quantum qualia (though it may interact with it on some level).  He is attempting to address being which contains the soul. 

     There are a number of issues that arise when one does not distinguish soul from being and attempts to make claims about being without at least some address of the components which fill it.  Yet, this still might be fertile ground to explore in some kind of process geared towards mutual understanding.

     Most Christians focused on explaining ideas relating to Ontology, the philosophy of being, group body and soul with spirit in the context of being with the assumption that if judged worthy of eternal life with Christ we eventually gain a glorified body in the afterlife.  Questions about this are addressed in forthcoming Being Becoming book series, the first of which is entitled: Being and Systems: Interdisciplinary Theory.

     Though this is a complex matter to discuss, there appears to be a window for constructive dialog here.  Maybe the best place to start is for Deepak to read this article again – until he gets it!  Then perhaps he might offer answers to these questions – process which might result in adjustments, modifications or revisions.  That would be a fruitful outcome.


Special thanks to my friend, Dr. Abdon Nanhay, MD (featured left)  who sent me this Deepak Chopra video with the thought that I might comment on it.   :   ]


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Richard Waguespack’s Reaction To Dr. Leon Eisenburg’s Deathbed Reflections on ADD / ADHD

Commentary on suppressed Eisenburg “Deathbed Reflections” on ADD/ADHD” and closely related Kagan Interview on ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDERS

By Richard Waguespack, Ph.D., LCSW

Very recently a very informative and responsible article on Dr. Eisenburg, a man accepted by some as the ‘Father of ADHD’ was published by and yet was removed even before I finished this commentary.  It read “The Man Credited with “Discovering” ADHD Makes a Startling Deathbed Confession “ADHD is a prime example of a fictitious disease.”|By The Farmacy. 

The only trace I could find of the Eisenburg piece was a commentary from Snopes that ranked this smothered article as “mostly true” and then went on to ratify the content.  I suppose such an outcome works better than a 404 error page. Perhaps the piece raised too many uncomfortable questions for psychiatrists, pharmacists and others to address in public forums and regular practice or the authors did not think it good for business.

Rather than just bury my own commentary in exasperation amidst the suspicious withdrawal, I reinforce the points made herein with reference to another very similar interview of Harvard psychiatrist Dr. Jerome Kagan by Speigel online in August 2012, “Speigel Interview with Jerome Kagan ‘What About Tutoring Instead of Pills?'” Here is He refers to ADD as an “invention” that encouraged “fuzzy diagnostic practices” and the over-prescription of drugs such as Ritalin for behavioral problems in children.

Though sometimes helpful, Amphetamines can also cause much harm, especially with long term use. The reality is until fairly recently, Americans have largely been denied optimal management of ADD/ADHD because of the inflexibility built into the allopathic orientation of many MDs serving this industry.  One of the most troublesome practices in ADD/ADHD treatment was to insist that patients take amphetamines on a definitive regular schedule without teaching them to read signs of adrenal stress, exhaustion and burnout, making careful adjustments along the way.  Though this protocol  has fortunately waned in recent years, there remains a residual crater of profound blindness, in part caused by a greedy pharmaceutical industry and researchers with overly simplistic self serving models, at times contributing to other mental disorders and even non psychiatric physical problems in vulnerable young patients.

After several decades of very slowly recognized evidence pointing to the negatives associated with ‘standard’ inflexible standard treatment regimes of ADD/ADHD and the rising status of Osteopathic and Naturopathic  physicians, we are learning in retrospect how much better life would have been for millions had their insights and methods had more influence and been incorporated into standard models of practice much earlier.

Think about this question.  Had the holistic physicians dominated the treatment of ADD/ADHD in the early years, what might of been different?  I think we would see less mental illness and dual diagnosis.

For starters, we can assume that if the pedagogy of such practitioners had been in vogue in the early days, the approach would have likely been to treat the problem with as many holistic alternatives as possible and in some cases cautiously move a low dose amphetamine into the equation.  In many other cases alternative treatments may have been decided upon.  Clearly, somewhat fewer people would have been issued amphetamines, but more pointedly, the prescription strengths would have been less and given with much more flexible instructions supporting multiple supplements and more.  They would have recognized that while almost all antidepressants should be given on a regular schedule, amphetamines were not of the same nature and required a completely different approach. 

Those who really understand their neurology and physiology REALIZE intuitively, You don’t push these on an inflexible schedule – but what is the value of “intuition” to a typical allopathic physician – especially in the “old days” where few had the nerve to publicly question prevailing paradigms and approaches?  “Evidently”, not enough!!!

In the alternative schema, Holistic treatments would have much more quickly emerged.  The first line of treatment would have BEGUN with holistic, flexible and adaptive approaches to include supplements and lifestyle changes along with  more moderate use of amphetamines and the routine inclusion of  a variety of positive catalysts and buffers such as Vitamin B’s and fish oil (just to start a long list which might include agents like magnesium, lecithin, zinc and many others).  Who knows what new and better holistic interventions may have been developed had the pedagogical space for ADD/ADHD been dominated by other schools of thought.

It is not so much a question that these ADD/ADHD diagnosis’ and in many cases drug treatments have some validity, it is the sufferer’s have been to some extent abused, deprived of good  guidance and multifaceted treatment.  ADD and ADHD are real conditions. Categorizing them as mental disorders per se is a complicated matter and something they have been pretty careless about framing and establishing.  On the other hand, we have ‘traditional’ physicians like Hallowell and Ratey who themselves suffered from ADD / ADHD and were way ahead of the curve in advising many people within the ADD spectrum on how cope and adjust to in order to live out more optimal lives. 

Contemporary neuroimaging is fairly clear in detecting the existence of ‘cognitive deficit disorders’ ranging from ADD to Asperger’s to Autism… these categories  define what is diverting from “normal function” in a continuum of degree and severity.  Again, we have come to a point in time where it is now reasonable to claim that ADD and ADHD can be detected in neuroimaging with a significant degree of diagnostic objectivity and certainty.

Eisenburg may have had noble motives for identifying the top end of these syndromes and yet it seems at the end of his life, doubts about the merits of his observations and analysis emerged because of the large numbers whose conditions could be construed as ADD/ADHD and because of so much grey running into normal was also a factor.  He never-the-less addressed a distinct set of variables of a somewhat distinct portion of the population adroitly – with diagnostic criteria.   Unlike the nature of almost any other medical condition, there are some, but not a lot of ADD / ADHD individuals who will end up being more successful than most of their peers and contemporaries. This confounds the category of prognosis and opens it up very wide.

Most in this special category would have had the benefit of understanding their conditions in early childhood and learned to successfully master helpful adaptions with an eye to fully utilize available support and education. Predictably some of the education will be both very informative as well as aspirational — more fully including perspectives on how these ‘disorders’ may be gifts and how great people in history evidenced similar struggles  and prevailed with a lifetime of impressive achievements!  

Such thinking has not played well with the epistemology of medicine.  After all, medical notions such as “prognosis” are meant to predict the success of treatment within more manageable and reliable constructs.

Being ADD/ADHD is a little like being an alcoholic because the suffer is urged to accept his or her condition and overcompensate by mastering study techniques, eat the right things, take the right supplements, get out of denial and learn how to relate better to others and anticipate dealing with struggles ahead equipped with the best social support and medicine has to offer.  In addition, “the others” in patient’s life might be candidates who are informed about the condition and learn ways to be supportive.  To their credit, some ADD snuffer’s have successfully capitalized on this caring culture, receiving compassionate assistance from schools, workplaces, summer camps and Church communities.  The have “found” themselves and often a large measure of success, albeit somewhat fragile.

So, here we go, achieving at the top end of the treated ADHD spectrum is arguably better than reaching a “social normal” and yet the top end sometimes, demands” medical attention and related support to get there.  This is a similar to the host of concerns invoked by nootropics in general.   Such issues are augmented because ADD / ADHD people at times demand special accommodations in school and yet when they enter the workplace may seem more presumptuous and less manageable than peers who were more disciplined, better students with more socially acceptable outlook and personality.  Conversely, a portion of ADD people may also be a bit more “noticed” and demanding as they blossom into highly creative, intuitive and inspirational roles. 

Eisenburg arrived in the world under a given set of conditions.  He chose to embrace medicine as a career.  He, like the vast majority of his peers may have been in partial  denial about the  the magnitude of predatory and unethical practices rolled out by Big Pharma – which almost surely had a significant influence on his medical practice.  His remarks dismissing ADD as factitious seem to translate into a sentiment that he would like to destroy the entire paradigm and its contingencies and start over.  

Those who produce texts in the history of medicine and other related scholars would do well to probe the depths of such notions – including the possibility of questionable agendas, not on the surface that indicate the desire to frame interventions with new underlying of  ‘preferred scripts’ and socially acceptable developmental paradigms for such individuals.   Clearly most people believe in self direction for patients, but fewer evidence the magnanimity to create societies that make is possible for such people to succeed on a high level  

Until recently, America’s record for a high quality supportive culture for people with disabilities, even subtle ones has been one of the best the modern world has known. We are still doing pretty well but seem to be slipping in education generally and our workplace is very complex.  It is a tremendous undertaking to attempt to draw those with ‘minor handicaps’ to a high level of functioning when our current norm is at such a low level. 

The “evidence” is not so much that Eisenburg’s diagnosis of or at least perception of  ADD / ADHD was ‘incorrect’, but his evidently flawed capacity to diagnose, discern and “rule on” the nefarious nature of Big Pharma’s agendas and their plans to orchestrate them through such leaders as Eisenburg.

For the sake of a less disputable and reliable history of medicine for posterity, I would like to know a fuller account of Eisenburg’s day to day orientation  —  where he and other practitioners he knew decided that pressing for rather exacting regimes for amphetamines was not working so well and especially over the long run quite possibly doing damage.  Maybe now in the wake of Eisenburg, others with similar life experience will step up to the plate with more more transparency and accuracy.

Who is going to do justice to the American public as well as the future of medicine.? Tell the truth without too much white wash – PLEASE!

Transitioning to the arena of education served Eisenburg and others very well.  It is utterly obvious that schools have had trouble managing many kids diagnosed with attention deficit disorders, AND they almost always behaved better on medication.  The issue is in earlier times, such problems existed, but was somehow managed by individuals overcompensating without medication.  There problems were much more under the radar. 

Discipline is about controlling impulses and not causing trouble even if you feel somewhat “out of it”.  For those who believe in a modicum of free will, encouraging self discipline and offering proper guidance can go much further than drugs to accommodate those suffering from attention deficit distractibility and impulse control issues. However, most today would argue that the use of drugs to increase performance of the ADD/ADHD population is essential.  Integrating these perspectives for a proper balance seems essential if we are to advance our educational systems to a higher, more competitive level.

Yes, the drugs help, but if we are depending on drugs as the primary variable to control behavior problems at the starting gate, we will probably keep handing out higher MGs in greater volume in the near future.  At the root, we as a society and as families and individuals are dealing with basic pastoral and philosophical issues!  Let’s not let the school district consultants minimize these variables – they should be up for discussion and part of the counseling process!

Many in the medical community have made ‘functional and often self serving assumptions’ about best practices, human nature, the value of human life in the context of spiritual growth and freedom as well as physician’s perceived  “need” to comply with the ethos of unreasonable health care organizations in league with Big Pharma.  For the most part they have not pushed back so much.  However, hopefully there is change on the horizon.  We can no longer afford to sweep so many issues under the rug and claim we are adequately communicating.  We are not.  We may know the answers, but we are terribly short on public testimonials and earnest disclosures in the interest of the common good from those who have moved on from the status quo.

Perhaps Eisenburg would have preferred ADD/ADHD be described as “minor’ abnormalities that in times prior have generally been thought of as personality traits or minor handicaps, but not mental disorders.  There is wisdom in such an orientation but it does not play well with No Child Left Behind Laws, Big Pharma and other industries that benefit from platforms that serve their best interest.  Perhaps if another brand of medicine had dominated treatment in the earlier stages of recognizing these ‘syndromes’ within an more holistic integrative medicine venue, the magnitude of problems would have been less.  In the final analysis we want a culture that cares and we also want all individuals to assume as much responsibility as they can.

Eisenburg’ is quoted in this article:

Let’s go back 50 years. We have a 7-year-old child who is bored in school and disrupts classes. Back then, he was called lazy. Today, he is said to suffer from ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). . . . Every child who’s not doing well in school is sent to see a pediatrician, and the pediatrician says: “It’s ADHD; here’s Ritalin.” In fact, 90 percent of these 5.4 million kids don’t have an abnormal dopamine metabolism. The problem is, if a drug is available to doctors, they’ll make the corresponding diagnosis.).

While agreeing with Eisenburg’s sentiments about the problems with contemporary medical practice and ADD treatment,  it does seem he feels compelled to frame his position within a set of variables that comply with a mechanistic and very misleading paradigm.  Herein lies a very major misgiving that has risen to the surface in my mind — and stayed there.  A person suffering from ADD/ADHD  may have a basically “intact dopamine metabolism” (in relation to existing brain and nervous system) but still have minor brain damage or congenital defects in the distribution of neurons or certain kinds of glial cells (the hallmark of many ADD cases) which requires overcompensation AND regulation, NOT normalization by the ‘intact dopaminergic’ system that medication ramps to a much fuller throttle. 

Brain and related nervous system physiology will probably produce normal or near normal levels of dopamine for the ADD/ADHD suffers, but the neurotransmitters are serving defective or abnormal “hardware”.  In order to sustain optimal learning and development in ADD / ADHD, allopathic physicians have gotten into the habit of pushing the dopmergenic system to be more productive — YET, not to overproduce in order to compensate for inadequate levels of dopamine.  They simply want to ‘ramp up’ the functioning of the brain and nervous system and entire physiology to a more optimal level – for a limited amount of time. 

The big error of many allopathic orientations is to function with an ethos that does not demand they be much better equipped to define and address complexities in a way where the consumers (patient and family) know what the benefits, risks and drawbacks are and be given some ideas of various thresholds of homeostasis waxing and waning over a long period of time that they need to consider.   Discussions about a wide range of alternative and multifaceted treatment and ongoing complementary / integrative supplements that may allow for lower dosing of amphetamines is absolutely essential.  In this way the patient and family can plan better, making much better choices at almost every interval.

The challenge at hand is similar to a long distance runner asking a doctor for a cortisol shot in order to compete in the next big event.  Sure, this major anti-inflammatory agent is going to remove pain and its symptoms but not the source of the pain. A day or two after the event when the endorphins and related agents recede, a much greater pain from an injury re-injured and made worse will likely result.  Maybe the doctor should have engaged in a holistic discussion with the patient even if he made less money AND also referred the patient and loved ones to a counselor with knowledge about the condition and proven ability to help.

In the case of ADD / ADHD the damage caused by overuse of amphetamines may not show up for years.  When it does, such etiology may very well be ‘overlooked’ for obvious reasons – thus the “evidence” for damage is often  cumulative, not obvious for a LONG TIME.  Parkinson’s is but one example.  How about depression from a distressed and burned out adrenal system combined with social and economic problems due to decreased levels of functioning?

If the public had relied primarily on Osteopathic and Naturopathic practitioners to help manage  ADD / ADHD from the time it became standardized as a disorder (see a fairly modern description as provided in the DSM II in 1980), Americans suffering from or supporting someone with this condition would surely be in a different boat than the current state of affairs.   But even here, since the allopathic mindset reigned supreme, there were built in disincentives for physicians to look very deeply or to frame in ways which did not empower the medical community and keep patients guessing and off balance – and dependent.

The deep questions and decision making on a philosophical / moral / spiritual level still remain somewhat obscured as a result.  As pointed out in this article, even the public neurological explanations, apologies and caveats from top minds are filled with distortions because they have been cultivated for a very long time with faulty, industry serving models and a gross lack of attention to a host of variables that matter a lot.

The elephant in the room is twofold — and paradoxical.  On one hand there are technically extra demands on neurochemistry to get from point A to B in ADD treatment.  Confusingly, on the other, there is abundant evidence that when those who really need amphetamines take them, wear and tear on the nervous system and physiology as a whole is considerably less than it would be for someone who really does not meet the criteria for ADD/ADHD but still wants to have the medicine in order to perform better.  I think many would agree with the informal, practice wisdom difficult to prove experimentally that homeostatic adjustments though compounded for anyone who takes amphetamines are not the same for everyone and favor those who clearly have organic deficits to overcome.

We must also consider the generally beneficial complexity of having extra ingredients such as omega3 fatty acids in modern holistic treatment of ADD.  To understand all the variables surrounding the neurology surrounding ADD, not just a reductionistic and often false representation of “dopamine deficinecy” is critical.  What is the function of Choline, acetylchoine, Epinephrine, Norepinephrine, GABA, Glutamate etc.?   According to a fairly comprehensive encyclopedia article Amphetamine (retrieved 5.10.17),

The full profile of amphetamine’s short-term drug effects in humans is mostly derived through increased cellular communication or neurotransmission of dopamine,[37] serotonin,[37] norepinephrine,[37] epinephrine,[153] histamine,[153] CART peptides,[166][167] endogenous opioids,[174][175][176] adrenocorticotropic hormone,[177][178] corticosteroids,[177][178] and glutamate,[158][162] which it effects through interactions with CART, 5-HT1A, EAAT3, TAAR1, VMAT1, VMAT2, and possibly other biological targets.[sources 14]

In sum, Amphetamines ‘hit’ the dopamine receptors, as agonists, but there is a broader cascade going on, both in terms of scope of functions and types of neurotransmitters involved.  Put bluntly, frank discussions about the dangers of long term use of amphetamines, including over-taxing adrenals and pressuring various  neurons to burn out and not adequately produce, re-uptake and refurbish dopamine, serotonin and other neurotransmitters.

People make the decision to ramp up the dopamine metabolism (better put – amphetamine metabolism) as well as adjacent physiology believing it to be the lesser of two evils.  Taking amphetamines in not inherently good though it may help a person function at his or her best IF NOT ABUSED or depended on too much.  This assumes a person has a strong feel for dangerous thresholds and has a reasonably good handle on life management.  It presumes that treating physicians are able to advise on encourage a holistic treatment regimes.

See Also: Addicted To Adderall (Video – Dr. Oz and Guests)


Notice:  I am a clinical social worker with an academic Ph.D. in Cultural Clinical Psychology and High School teaching credentials / teaching experience in science, health science technology and other areas.  College teaching experience has been limited to social work, psychology and sociology.  Most of my practice in recent years has been in geriatrics though I am open to limited work with other populations (i.e. New Life Coaching).  I do a lot of independent research in order to develop interdisciplinary systems related to medicine but this is a broader, generalist orientation that to some degree extends beyond medicine per se. 

This article is for informational purposes only and should NOT be construed as medical advice.  Please seek personal medical guidance from a fully credentialed Physician, Pharmacist or Independent nurse practitioner about your individual medical needs.   AGAIN, please consult with such sources before making any medical decisions.


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