Re: Science Saturday: The Mental Illness Epidemic (John Horgan & George Johnson)
Bowen has said: "There is a little schizophrenia in all of us." In my view it is clearly the case. It is a basic part of nature itself. The hottest part of summer, in the northern hemisphere, occurs when the earth is at its farthest distance from the sun. Conversely, the coldest part of winter, in the northern hemisphere, is when the earth is closest to the sun in its migratory orbit around the sun. The seasons can be viewed as a schizophrenic phenomenon! Phenomena observed on biological, psychological, and sociological levels are interrelated.
"Family systems theory is based on the assumptions that the human is a product of evolution and that human behavior is significantly regulated by the same natural processes that regulate the behavior of all other living things. A corollary assumption is that clinical disorders are a product of that part of man he has in common with the lower animals. The human's elaborately developed cerebral cortex and complex psychology contribute to making him unique in some respects, but, despite these specializations, systems theory assumes that homo sapiens is far more like other life forms than different from them. While developed on the assumption of man's tie to nature, family systems theory is only a step towards understanding the human in this context of natural systems, since we have barely scratched the surface of what will eventually be known about the forces of nature which regulate the behavior of all life."
"In other words, one assumes not only that the activity of a cancer has an impact on the psychological state of the patient and on the patient's family relationships, but also that the family relationships and psychological state have some impact on the cancer. This is not to say that what is occurring in the family causes the cancer to act in certain ways, but only that the biological process of the cancer and the emotional process of the family, are to some degree, mutually influencing one another. While this kind of assumption is supported by ever increasing amounts of evidence from sources too numerous to mention, it still cannot be regarded as proven fact. If one assumes, however, that further research will only confirm the interrelationship of biological, psychological, and sociological levels, it can be easily seen that an integrative theory will eventually be developed, and that factors related to the family system will be an important part of that theory."
Quotes from: "FAMILY EVALUATION" by Kerr and Bowen