I’ve been a little scared of losing God most of my professional education and practice life. Everyone knows that no one can make it through psychiatry and still believe in God. And those that do make it through psychiatry and still believe in God, don’t get it. Or so the opinion goes.
When I started medicine, I thought I’d most likely go into psychiatry. I read my Bible every day. I was crushed by landslides of information I had to learn. With the equivalent of dirt in my hair, broken bones, and blood, I participated in prayer groups and Bible studies. I had to sleep eight hours a night. If I didn’t, I couldn’t lay down knowledge and I couldn’t cope. You may be one of those lucky persons who only need four to six hours of sleep at night to be human. This an advantage equivalent to getting a silver silk parachute airdrop of food, medicine, and weapons in the Hunger Games. I graduated from medical school and still had God.
Psychiatry residency opened up and I got closer to the the lions den.
What I found is that if you believe in God you are distrusted by colleagues. If you believe in God you are distrusted by Christians because you’re a psychiatrist. And by Scientologists.
Innocents seem to be fine when they enter into psychiatry residency. Then they come out totally changed. It disappoints Dad. Surrounded by cerebralists. It changes the plans sponsors have made for the psychiatrists. The psychiatrist doesn’t get invited to speak at church. The sponsors think they must have let him or her down. And the sponsors thought the psychiatrists let them down.
Psychiatry is very high risk to the psychiatrist. Why is it harder for them to keep God? It’s just generally not taught to utilize God in remedial processes with broken people. “And yet that is what God does best,” says my orthopedic buddy. He says, “Psychiatry breaks down interpersonal relationships rather than include the spiritual. Unless the psychiatrist feels very comfortable with the healing and revitalizing powers of God, they don’t use it for themselves in practice.” Is there a God-desensitization process built into their education.?
When studying where emotions and behaviors come from, God can’t be scaled. There is no way to measure God.
We delve into human behaviors and emotions so intimately in psychiatry. Once you realize that those things we used to moralize our life parameters with, once we realize that a perception of God is that “easily explained,” we don’t know what or who God is if not that. Psychiatry deals with the mind and spirit and not the musculoskeletal world. They are are right in the middle of breakdowns in that field where good bones and joints don’t make the difference. They are right there where good behaviors and emotions are valued, and explained in terms of grey matter. Psychiatrist come to understand that everything is modular in the brain. At that point, there is no need for God anymore.
Why do people lose God? Parents blame themselves. “I’ll never forgive myself.” They know what they’ve lost.
Remember that song by Sting, “I hope the Russians love their children too“? God v the Modular Brain might become a war.
My next book is going to be about God and psychiatry. Wish me luck. Recommendations, opinions, (no crude gestures,) and silver silk parachutes airdropped are all welcome. Don’t hate me. Keep on.