The case of "Brimstone" (Super Spiritualism, schizophrenia)

Casebook of Biblical Psychiatry © Version 7 (CBP-7)

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Casebook of Biblical Psychiatry© brings the principles of Biblical Psychiatry to life based upon real-world cases and familiarizes Christians with different types of situations. This practical companion volume to Biblical Psychiatry© includes not only diagnosis, but also in-depth discussions by experienced Christians for Biblical approaches to treatment. This meticulously detailed volume of dynamic real-life case studies is simply a "must read" for all clinical Psychiatrists, mental health care professionals and Christians interested in expert opinion on today's treatment approaches. Psychiatric students, educators, and practitionersóas well as social workers, nurses, medical physicians, and interested laypersonsówill find this unique volume of inestimable value in their day-to-day work.

 

 

 

The case of
"Brimstone"

(Super Spiritualism, schizophrenia)

See the case of "Candy"

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The case of "Brimstone"

 

Biopsychiatric labels DSM-5

Religious mania, Schizophrenia, delusion, paranoia

 

Checklist Behaviours DSM-7

Some specific unknown sin, lack of repentance, Deception

 

Insights MMPI-7

 

 

Quick Pick EDS-7.1

Super Spiritualism, Super-Christian Syndrome, Insanity

 

Self-disablement EDS-7.2

Was allowed to stay at home with his mother and continue to be dependent.

 

Chemical imbalance EDS-7.3

Yes. Although before the era of prescribed psychiatric drugs (1950's) which create chemical imbalances in the brain, at this point in history Opium was the only drug widely used to create chemical imbalances in the brains of the insane. He was likely given Opium at Bedlam for only six weeks. This indicates he is not brain damaged with little risk of Tardive Dyskinesia.

 

Benefits EDS-7.4

Alibi for impending failure as an adult or failure at school, work or home: EDS-7.4.7

Smokescreen for secret sin that is soon to be discovered: EDS-7.4.10

Self-punishment for personal failures or to ease a guilty conscience: EDS-7.4.12

 

Monetary EDS-7.5

 -

 

Annoyance Scale EDS-7.6

High

 

Diagnostic Laws EDS-7.7

Law of Narcissistic Behaviour Choice (NBC) EDS-7.7.1.NBC

Law of Derivative Personal Benefit (DPB) EDS-7.7.2.DPB

Law of Annoyance Toleration Threshold (ATT) EDS-7.7.5.ATT

Law of Diagnostic Anosognosia Relativism (DAR) EDS-7.7.7.DAR

Law of Habitual Smokescreen Decoy (HSD) EDS-7.7.10.HSD

Law of Locus Pentaphasic Transmutation (LPT) EDS-7.7.11.LPT

Law of Anticipatory Warthog Psychosis (AWP) EDS-7.7.13.AWP

 

Determine the Problem

Unknown secret sin the preacher condemned in his sermon.

 

Ask a Child

Something he heard in that sermon bothered him. EDS-7.7.12.PMO

 

5 years later EDS-7.7.LPT

He was home fully dependent upon his mother.

 

 

 

The case of "Brimstone"

 

John Wesley, 1747 AD. A 20 year old man becomes schizophrenic after being convicted of sin from a Sunday sermon

 

"Wednesday, 17 September 1740. A poore woman gave me an account of what, I think, ought never to be forgotten. It was four years, she said, since her son, Peter Shaw, then nineteen or twenty years old, by hearing a sermon of Mr. Wheatley's, fell into great uneasiness. She thought he was ill, and would have sent for a physician; but he said, 'No, no. Send for Mr. Wheatley'. He was sent for, and came; and, after asking her a few questions, told her, 'The boy is mad. Get a coach, and carry him to Dr. Monro [the mad doctor of famous Bedlam asylum in London, England]. Use my name. I have sent several such to him'. Accordingly, she got a coach, and went with him immediately to Dr. Monro's house. When the doctor came in, the young man rose and said, 'Sir, Mr. Wheatley has sent me to you'. The doctor asked, 'Is Mr. Wheatley your minister?' and bid him put out his tongue. Then, without asking any questions, he told his mother : 'Choose your apothecary [drug], and I will prescribe'. According to his prescriptions they, the next day, blooded him largely, confined him to a dark room, and put a strong blister on each of his arms, with another over all his head. But still he was as 'mad' as before, praying or singing, or giving thanks continually; of which having laboured to cure him for six weeks in vain, though he was now so weak he could not stand alone, his mother dismissed the doctor and apothecary, and let him be 'beside himself' in peace." (Primitive Physic: or An Easy and Natural Method of Curing Most Diseases, John Wesley, 1747 AD)

 

Discussion:

John Wesley, co-founder of Methodism, discusses a case of this young man who went insane after hearing a sermon. The mother of the 20 year old, wanted to take him to the doctor, but her son asked to see the Mr. Wheatley, who preached the sermon which triggered his schizophrenia in the first place. In a very sad turn of events, the preacher sent him to Dr. Munro, the head doctor at the famous Bedlam asylum in London. Had the preacher the simple wisdom to understand that his sermon condemned a sin the young man was actively guilty of committing, he could have elicited a confession and restored the man to normal thinking. There are many examples of people who choose the smokescreen and decoy of psychotic, schizophrenic behaviour to deflect attention away from sinful behaviour.

 

But notice that Dr. Monro asked the mother what she wanted done to her insane son. Did you catch that? The expert doctor, asked the mother how to treat her own son. This is why in the opening statement Wesley says, "ought never to be forgotten". Standard humoral treatments were done to the boy that included blistering and bloodletting and isolation in a dark room (too much sunlight created an imbalance in the four humors). This went on for six weeks to no avail so the mother brought her son home to be insane in peace.

 

There was a long and well documented war that between Monro of Bedlam and Wesley of the church. This war continues today between chemical psychiatry and Christians who firmly maintain man has a soul and is more than a pile of chemicals. Monro would eventually ban all religious leaders from visiting Bedham because of these kinds of cases. Monro was on record for accusing the preachers of driving people mad. Of course Monro was actually right but had no idea why till the day of his death. Clearly, a convicted conscience in conflict with itself will chose insanity as an escape.

 

This is a classic case of super spiritualism: "But still he was as 'mad' as before, praying or singing, or giving thanks continually". This behaviour is how the convicted mind attempts to gain favor and salvation from God without repentance. It is that old "balance scale salvation" your next door neighbor believes will get him to heaven without ever going to church because he is a basically good person and the net good he has done, outweighs the bad. See the case of "Candy" of another Christian who became "super Christian" as a cover for a lesbian affair.

 

Sadly, neither Wesley nor the preacher Mr. Wheatley thought to get a copy of the sermon the young man heard the night he went insane and go through it point by point with him. Even though it was hundreds of years before Carl Jung thought he invented "association therapy", it would be rather obvious by the young man's reaction to each point, which one was bothering him. A child would have thought of this.

 

Benefits from behaviour: This illustrates the Law of Narcissistic Behaviour Choice (NBC) EDS-7.7.1.NBC  

  1. Alibi for impending failure as an adult or failure at school, work or home: EDS-7.4.7. The man was at the critical threshold age of 18 where a boy crosses into manhood and becomes independent and self-sufficient. The fact the story ends with the idea the boy was never "cured" AND the fact he was home in the comforting arm of his mother is a strong indication of what was going on inside the young man's mind.
  2. Smokescreen for secret sin that is soon to be discovered: EDS-7.4.10. Sermons are designed to convict a sinner of his sin with threats of going straight to hell without any dinner if they don't repent. How this shocks the multitude of people today who have never attended a church to learn this fact. Yawn. His key behaviours were
  3. Self-punishment for personal failures or to ease a guilty conscience: EDS-7.4.12. We can chose to have Jesus to pay the penalty of our sins before we die in faith, confession and baptism, or we will pay the penalty for our sins eternally in hell after we die. This man understood this but was unwilling to repent. If he had, he would not have been driven to insanity.

 

Diagnostic laws that are seen illustrated in the case of "Brimstone":

  1. The man had calculated that the cost of being labeled insane and enduring 6 weeks of torture at Bedlam was worth the benefit of escaping the need to repent and confront his sins directly. This illustrates the Law of Derivative Personal Benefit (DPB) EDS-7.7.2.DPB
  2. It seems his mother, at least at first, was not willing to tolerate his annoying behaviour and shipped him quickly to the asylum. This illustrates the Law of Annoyance Toleration Threshold (ATT) EDS-7.7.5.ATT
  3. The man knew exactly what was bothering him and he must have laughed at the doctors when they treated him for a disease for 6 weeks through blisters and bloodletting. This illustrates the Law of Diagnostic Anosognosia Relativism (DAR) EDS-7.7.7.DAR
  4. His behaviours of "manic spiritualism" were a cover for how he really felt about himself. He wanted to project on the outside the appearance that he was and angel, but inwardly, he knew he was a sinner. He was the classic wolf in sheep's clothing. This illustrates the Law of Habitual Smokescreen Decoy (HSD) EDS-7.7.10.HSD
  5. At the beginning of 5 years he was on the threshold of leaving home and becoming independent as a man. At the end of the the five years, he was where he wanted to be: living at home in his parents basement getting his laundry and meals made for him and playing video games all night long while he smoked cigarettes. This illustrates the Law of Locus Pentaphasic Transmutation (LPT) EDS-7.7.11.LPT

6.      The vivid image of being dropped into the lava pit of fiery hell was a huge electric fence he did not want to cross. But he knew every man will bow the knee in judgement before Christ. This was what the sermon was about. Schizophrenia is how the mind rationalizes the irrational. He was headed down a road that led to a place he knew one day he would be. His only rational alternative was insanity. This illustrates the Law of Anticipatory Warthog Psychosis (AWP) EDS-7.7.13.AWP

 

 

By Steve Rudd: Contact the author for comments, input or corrections.

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