False Shepherds


“But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there shall be among you lying teachers, who shall bring in sects of perdition, and deny the Lord who bought them: bringing upon themselves swift destruction.’  (2 Peter 2:1)

We need truth to be able to operate successfully in the world.  This applies most especially to the spiritual side of life, but it also applies to the material and practical sides of life, e.g. in one’s occupation. One needs to know the fundamental truths of one’s profession in order to be successful at it.  For example, the engineer needs to have a basic grasp of mathematics, e.g. he needs to know ‘2+2=4’, before he takes on any job.  The doctor needs to know that having no pulse is not a sign of well-being.  If an engineer said he didn’t know that ‘2+2=4’, you would ask him which construction he had recently helped build and then avoid it like the plague! If a doctor thought a patient having no pulse was a sign of health, you would be wondering whether he really was a doctor! In these examples, it is clear that when a professional doesn’t have a firm grounding in the truth, he is a danger to the physical safety and health of his patients, those around him and himself.  Ultimately, what is more important than our physical well-being is our psychological/spiritual well-being.  Sometimes we may need professional support or advice in relation to our psychological/spiritual well-being.  For this, it is necessary to have psychological professionals who have a clear grasp of the fundamental truths about human beings.  Sadly, in our current times, this is rarely the case.

‘Beware lest any man cheat you by philosophy, and vain deceit; according to the tradition of men, according to the elements of the world, and not according to Christ’ (Colossians 2:8)

The field of psychology is populated by professionals who have flawed and dangerous understandings about the human condition. Studies show that professors of psychology are the most likely to be atheists with only 39 per cent believing in God (Gross & Simmons, 2009).  With these types of professors, it is no wonder that many of psychology’s most highly educated members spend years in academia and come out with less understanding of what man essentially is.  A fundamental truth about human beings is that we are created by God and have two essential parts – a material body and a spiritual soul, with the rational soul being per se the essential form of the body. It is also a fundamental truth that all human beings are affected by Original Sin and this has a major impact on our psychological state (See: ‘Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma’ by Ludwig Ott).  As Catholics, we assent to these truths about human beings. We can accept them as more true than ‘2+2=4’ as they are defined doctrines/dogmas. Unfortunately, many psychological professionals do not accept these fundamental truths.  In these times of diabolical disorientation, many psychological professionals, who have the incredibly important task of helping people in their mental distress, do not have a grasp of the fundamental truths of the human condition. 

For there shall be a time, when they will not endure sound doctrine; but, according to their own desires, they will heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears: And will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth, but will be turned unto fables.’ (2 Timothy 4:3-4)

The fundamental truths of human nature are rejected by many psychologists as if they were irrelevant to their practice. These errors are close to the engineering equivalent of rejecting the fact that ‘2+2=4’ or the medical equivalent of rejecting the fact that having no pulse is a serious problem! Yet, these psychological errors have more serious implications. In our current times, these professionals with erroneous beliefs play a leading role in diagnosing and treating people who are experiencing psychological distress. Many of us will accept their false teachings with ‘itching ears’ but some will see the errors and dangers in the ‘fables’ they tell us. In the above examples (engineer and doctor), many of us might complain to their respective associations.  But what happens when the very body responsible for making sure their respective professionals are competent is the one promoting dangerous falsehoods?

‘Beware of false prophets, who come to you in the clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are ravening wolves’ (Matthew 7:15)

The Psychological Society of Ireland (PSI) has approximately 3’000 members across Ireland.  This society is responsible for the accreditation of psychologists in Ireland. The PSI has a significant impact on public opinion with its President or CEO regularly given slots on national media to give the ‘expert’ psychological opinion.  Last year, the PSI publicly gave its support for the killing of babies.  Its policies on homosexual behaviour tells its members to affirm this atrocious sin: ‘PSI Guidelines for Good Practice with LGB clients’ – ‘5.4. Challenge anti-gay bias and take a gay-affirmative approach’ and ‘It is important to avoid any of the following when providing a psychology service to LGB patients/clients:  Failing to appreciate any non-heterosexual form of behaviour, identity, relationship, family or community’. The policy states that, ‘These guidelines are set within the Code of Ethics of the PSI. Membership of the Society is contingent on adherence to the Code of Ethics’.  No psychologist who truly understands the human condition and what we were created for can accept these guidelines!  

‘Every theory which discredits the true nature of man or denies the need of a Divine Remedy is only intensifying the disease which it attempts to cure’ – Bishop Fulton Sheen (‘Peace of Soul’)

The PSI is attempting to distort reality.  The society and its members are a particular threat to children and teenagers who are more likely to believe what an authority figure is telling them, especially one that seems professional, kind and nice.  These professionals have failed to pay heed to Our Lord’s words: ‘But he that shall scandalize one of these little ones that believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone should be hanged about his neck, and that he should be drowned in the depth of the sea.’ (Matthew 18:6). Woe to them if they continue in these errors! They are so far removed from the truth about the human condition that they are a serious threat to their own souls as well as the souls of their clients.  Rather than being an association which corrects the errors of its members, it is encouraging its members to accept and promote these toxic falsehoods.  Our Lord said that ‘you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free’ (John 8:32).  The PSI, in its policies and practice, offers lies, falsehoods and more chains to sin and the devil.  Using ‘cunning craftiness’ (Ephesians 4:14) they distort ‘science’ and use words like ‘liberty’, ‘compassion’ and ‘acceptance’ to push their diabolical agenda.  Affirmation and acceptance of sinful behaviour is not compassionate, and it certainly does not lead to liberty.  As Fr Edward Leen points out in his excellent book, ‘Why the Cross?’, when speaking about Christ: ‘He is very tender towards the imperfect, but relentless towards imperfection.’ (p. 48).  This is compassion grounded in the truth.  

Conclusion:

When the soul strays from Thee, she looks for things apart from Thee, but she finds all things impure and useless until she returns to Thee.’ – St Augustine (‘Confessions’)                               

Instead of going to see people who are disconnected from the truth, visit those who are grounded in reality and know that your soul, its purity and its health are the most precious gifts you have.  Consult a knowledgeable traditional priest who hasn’t bought into the modern psychological nonsense.  Spend time with a good friend who has the Faith (Old, wise and pious widows who are steeped in the Faith are often the best ‘psychologists’ out there.  Their accreditation is confirmed by life experience and the crosses that they have carried with humility, patience and perseverance. They also don’t tend to charge much per hour!).  If you really believe you need professional help with psychological issues, make sure that the professional knows the fundamental truths about human nature.   And let us pray that the PSI and its members stop straying from the truth and recognise and embrace the Light that ‘shineth in darkness’ (John 1:5).

References:

Gross, M. & Simmons, S. (2009) ‘The Religiosity of American College and University Professors’, Sociology of Religion, 70(2), pgs. 101-129.  Available at: https://academic.oup.com/socrel/article-abstract/70/2/101/1637811?redirectedFrom=fulltext [Accessed 20/08/2019]

The False Philosophy of Modern Psychology

Every theory which discredits the true nature of man or denies the need of a Divine Remedy is only intensifying the disease which it attempts to cure.  The psychopathic messes into which many tumble are due either to a want of a knowledge of human nature or to a want of a genuine religion.’ – (Bishop Fulton Sheen, ‘Peace of Soul’)

The last blog, ‘2+2=4?’, gave a brief insight into how mental health professionals can push falsehoods on their clients. It highlighted how mental health professionals can convince or persuade their clients that the client’s refusal to accept falsehoods is due to psychological or emotional issues that the client is experiencing or has experienced in the past. This can be done in a subtle and clever way under the guise of care (as outlined in the blog) or these falsehoods can be pushed more directly and violently on people, e.g. involuntary electroshock or involuntary injection of ‘non-compliant’ patients by mental health professionals (as outlined in the first blog, ‘Introduction/Bricks in the Wall’).  This blog looks at how modern psychology gives the false answers from the outset and how it is sending many people the wrong way.   

‘An error in definition is always fatal’

Fr Doolan’s quote above outlines the importance of accurate definitions in philosophical endeavours.  This applies equally to psychological endeavours. To help a person, one must understand what a human being actually is.  In the blog, ‘Be Yourself’, it was outlined how important an accurate answer to the question, ‘what am I?’, is if one wants to be truly free.  As the discipline of psychology is concerned with understanding the human mind and human behavior, it is essential that those who study and practice psychology have a clear understanding of what a human being is. Defining the object of study, i.e. human beings, is the first task that a psychologist must do. Understanding what a human being is involves scientific analysis and speculation to reach the right answer. One must be very careful in this initial process to avoid error as this will have devastating results further down the line if an error in definition has crept in.

 ‘A hair,’ they say, ‘divides the false and true.’ But a hair’s breadth departure from the heights of speculation from what is true and straight, will mean an ever widening gap as the stream of thought is followed from the heights, down to the lower planes whereon men’s everyday lives are passed.’ – Fr Doolan (‘Philosophy for the Layman’)

A thorough examination of philosophical science, driven by good will and a sincere love for the truth, will bring one to the conclusion that a human being is made of a soul and a body, with the soul being the more noble part of man.  Further philosophical analysis informs us that God is the Creator of each individual’s soul.  The Catholic Faith shows us that the purpose of human being’s existence is to know, honour and love God and it gives us the necessary supernatural assistance to help us do so.  Continuous deviation from or a rejection of this task of knowing, honouring and loving God will only mean misery and destruction for ourselves and the society around us.  ‘As we approach God we approach unity and perfection; as we descend from God we descend into multiplicity and imperfection.’ (Bishop Fulton Sheen, ‘God and Intelligence in Modern Philosophy’).  Any definition of man that does not acknowledge this true nature of man is already set out on the wrong path.  Any psychological service that does not work with the person in helping them to achieve the task of knowing, honouring and loving God is only intensifying the disease it is attempting to cure.   

Breakdowns:

When a person is experiencing a psychological breakdown, it is often a sign that the person is deviating from the task that they were created to fulfil.  An analogy will help to make this clear.  If a car has broken down and you are unable to start it, it indicates that something is wrong with the car as it is not performing the function it was designed to do.  If a person is living a disordered life where God is dismissed, mocked, ridiculed and insulted, it is a sign that something is wrong as they are not fulfilling the task that they were created for.  The car needs fixing and so does the person.  One fix involves a mechanical or electronic readjustment so the materials necessary to start the car work efficiently.  The fix for the person usually involves a divine remedy which nourishes the soul so that the person can work efficiently in their task of knowing, honouring and loving God.   Viewing sinful behaviour as ‘normal’ or ‘healthy’ behaviour is like the mechanic viewing the car being unable to start as ‘normal’.  Both require interventions.  A competent mechanic who understands what a car is and what it was designed to do is far better than one who believes a car being unable to start is ‘normal’ for cars!  A competent psychologist who understands what a human being is and what human beings are designed for is far better than one who believes sinful behaviour is a sign of good health and ‘progress’.  However, unlike the car, people who are offered fixes from mental health professionals have a choice over whether they accept the fix or guidance offered.  God gifted humans with free will and gave them a choice over whether they decide to live a life ordered towards His divine plan or not.  

It is not our privilege to measure out the kind of God we shall have…If there is any fitting to be done, it is we who are to fit ourselves to God, and not God to ourselves.’ (Bishop Fulton Sheen, ‘God and Intelligence in Modern Philosophy’). 

Modern psychological services are encouraging people to not live life in accordance with the divine plan or they try to twist God’s plan to fit the client’s disordered lifestyle. These psychologists encourage people to continue in their disordered lifestyles and they blame society for any pangs of conscience that a client engaging in sinful behaviour experiences.  For example, being registered as a psychologist with the Psychological Society of Ireland (PSI) is contingent on affirming and encouraging homosexual behaviour (see: https://www.cancer.ie/sites/default/files/content-attachments/psi_guidelines.pdf)  and the PSI blames societal ‘stigma’ for women feeling bad after an abortion (see: https://www.psychologicalsociety.ie/footer%202/PSI-Guidelines-Policies–Papers).  By not understanding what human beings are and what they were designed for, modern psychologists push man away from the Truth and further into a disordered and chaotic lifestyle.  If the distressed person believes and acts on false information provided by the mental health professional the inevitable result will be more misery in this life and an increase in the likelihood of experiencing eternal misery and torture in the next.

Clear Reflections:

Bishop Fulton Sheen highlights how necessary it is for us to gain a true picture for those leading a destructive life: ‘As a drunkard will sometimes become conscious of the gravity of his intemperance only through the startling vision of how much he has wrecked his own home and the wife who loved him, so, too, sinners may come an understanding of their wickedness when they understand what they have done to Our Divine Lord.’ (Peace of Soul).  Just as there is a duty to point out the destruction the drunkard is causing for their own good, it is a duty of mental health professionals to point out the sinful behaviour of their clients for their own good. If people living in sin are not given the truth about their situation and not encouraged to change their lifestyle and seek divine remedies, then the chains around them will only become tighter. There are solutions and people should be directed towards these.

It is the intention of this service, Truth and Freedom Therapy (TFT), to provide an alternative to the predominant, false and destructive direction modern psychological services are going in.  A true understanding of what it means to be human is the foundation for TFT. Understanding what us, human beings, are and acting on this knowledge is the starting point on the road to freedom.  This is the way to happiness.

‘Just Be Yourself’


‘It is impossible for all men to be moulded according to the same pattern. Every individual’s personality must be preserved.  This world would be a dull place if it were otherwise.’ (Fr Aegidius Doolan, ‘Philosophy for the Layman’)

While feeling nervous before an important interview or an initial date with someone we really liked, many a wise mother has advised us to ‘just be yourself’.  Feeling ‘at ease in your skin’ and being ‘comfortable in your own shoes’ are a joy to experience.  All of us have tasted that experience where things just click, and the sailing is smooth. It is a pleasure interacting with people who are natural and at ease with themselves.  It puts you and others at ease. Numerous ‘self-help’ books try to sell you the key to this ‘flow’ or smoothness in your life.  They offer guides to finding your ‘true self’ or promise to help you to find your true calling.  They all appeal to the inner restlessness in us that is still trying to figure out exactly who we are and what is our true calling.  Inner restlessness is a major sign of our times and the self-help writers and book publishers are only too happy to keep offering the next new ‘solution’ for this profitable and ever-increasing market that is driven by anxiety.  The more self-help books are published, the more restlessness there is in the world.  We all want to ‘just be ourselves’.  However, we do not need to pack our shelves full of self-help books to do so.  We just need to get back to basics and figure out the truth of one fundamental question.

The solution to ‘just being yourself’ involves the exploration of the question, ‘What Am I?’ as you can not know how to be unless you know what you are. This is where a deep and accurate understanding of psychology can help.

What a man ought to do…will depend on what he has the power to do, which is the question for psychology… ‘When do we come?’ ‘Whither do we go? ‘In what shall consist our fulfilment?’ ‘At what must we aim for happiness?’…All these questions are contained in the master-question, ‘What am I?’  (‘Philosophy for the Layman’)

Exploring and answering this question is vital in one’s search for freedom and happiness.  This is not an easy task by oneself, yet it is the essential starting point.  We need time and space to explore this question and guidance in seeking the answers.  Once we have assented to the answers, we can then cultivate our personality based on this understanding and ‘be ourselves’.  While most Irish mothers don’t need a long university education to realise the truth in this advice, they also happen be in line with Professor of Philosophy Charles A. Dubray who, in his classic book, ‘Introductory Philosophy’, also encourages us in this endeavour:

‘To be a person is to emerge above the universal determinism of matter, to conquer and not be conquered, to possess oneself…To be oneself is to be one’s own master.  Hence let your primary and chief endeavour be to develop in you good habits, good dispositions, and a good character.  Always strive after what is worth your best effort. Ascertain the direction to be taken, and, when you know that your efforts are directed toward right and noble ideals, be strong, constant, and invincible.  In all things and actions, be a personality, be yourself.

The message really is that simple – direct your life in accordance with what is noble, good and true and ‘be yourself’.  A life in accordance with truth ennobles and cultivates your unique personality.  It is a life directed to overcoming those internal and external forces that encourage a hiding of your individuality and the goodness within you. ‘Conquering’ rather than being ‘conquered’ brings your true personality and individuality forth.  A person living the truth and cultivating their personality is to be celebrated and encouraged.  Attaching yourself and your mind to a transient belief system, like hedonism, materialism, rationalism, or to the latest trendy philosophical fad, only allows forces to mould you into what they want you to be. This is not freedom.

Knowing, attaching yourself to, and loving the truth frees you so you can be your true self.

Personality is the perfected form of the person; it is man’s destiny in its individual uniqueness. It is individuality in all its depth, breadth and totality.  Every person has the task of perfecting and completing his own essence.  It would be quite wrong to say that it is a matter of indifference whether or not someone does achieve this completion and perfection of his individuality.  The achievement of his task…not only involves his happiness on earth; it is also upon this achievement that depends his capability to live up to the tasks God has given him to fulfil.’ (Dr. Willibald Demal, ‘Pastoral Psychology in Practice’)

You know, even if you register it only slightly, that you want to be more free. We all have had moments of regret in our lives where we stayed quiet and hid rather than allow the goodness and truth in us to shine forth. Do not let the cynicism of the world and the forces working against you stop your attempts to break free.  Strive for the good and the true.  Endeavour to cultivate and express your individuality. As the Irish singer/songwriter, Luka Bloom, sings, ‘Don’t be afraid of the light that shines within you’.

This advice ‘just be yourself’ is an easy one to make and it sits comfortably with our common sense understanding about life.  Figuring out what is good and true is the first step on this path. Exploring and answering the question, ‘what am I?’ is a vital step as well. Figuring out the answers here lays the foundations for freeing yourself. This can take time and support to do so, especially in the world in which we find ourselves today that offers so many flawed answers to these vital questions. If you are looking for an answer to these vital questions, blogs on this website Truth may help. I hope that they can help you in figuring out who you are meant to be and that you can then finally ‘just be yourself’.