The Definition Of "Psychology"
- From: rpautrey2 <rpautrey2@xxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Mon, 29 Sep 2008 09:59:42 -0700 (PDT)
The Definition of "Psychology"
by Gene Zimmer
The word "psychology" is the combination of two terms - study (ology)
and soul (psyche), or mind. The derivation of the word from Latin
gives it this clear and obvious meaning:
The study of the soul or mind.
This meaning has been altered over the years until today, this is not
what the word means at all. The subject of psychology, as studied in
colleges and universities, currently has very little to do with the
mind, and absolutely nothing to do with the soul or spirit.
It is important to understand that words and ideas are supposed to
refer to something. "The large tree in the front yard" refers to an
actual thing that can be seen, touched and experienced. "The man
walking his little dog last night at sunset" refers to an actual event
that can be seen, observed and experienced. The realm of mind is an
actual realm that can be experienced, and at one time there were words
that accurately referred to this realm.
Let's see what a few dictionaries have to say and how a word could
alter and lose its true and actual meaning.
"Psyche" is defined as:
1. The spirit or soul.
2. The human mind.
3. In psychoanalysis, the mind functioning as the center of thought,
emotion, and behavior.
And defining "soul", we have:
1. the spiritual or immortal elements in a person.
2. a person's mental or moral or emotional nature.
Most of us would agree we have a "psyche" per the above definitions in
the sense of mind, thought, and emotions. Most would also agree they
have a "soul" per the second definition above relating to man's
mental, moral or emotional nature. We might all have different notions
about what these ultimately are, but few could sanely disagree they
The derivation of "psyche" comes from Latin and the Greek psukhe -
breath, life, soul. To get a better "feel" for this term try to think
of it as the invisible animating principle or entity that occupies,
interacts with and directs the physical body.
We are not dealing with opinions or beliefs here. This is simply what
the words and terms mean. Get clear on this first and understand what
the words and terms mean, before you start getting into the opinions
of others on the subject. If you choose to decide the "mind" refers to
nothing real after understanding what the words and definitions mean,
despite the fact that almost 10,000 years of thinking men have
seriously and carefully looked into this subject, and after no real
investigation on your own part, then that's your decision. Also,
realize you will be basing this decision on "thinking" and "reason",
both of which are only subsidiary to and part of any one mind, and
neglecting to use a greater aspect of your mind - your personal
awareness and direct observation. Basing a decision on what other
people say about a mind involves only concepts and ideas about a mind.
Observation involves experiencing the mind itself - your own mind.
When it comes to minds there is only one mind any of us can directly
observe or experience and that mind is our own. If you want to learn
about minds, the only place to start is with your own. You cannot
directly observe or experience the mind of another person, at least
not without some extrasensory ability such as telepathy.
What is the Mind?
Originally, and for thousands of years, the subject of psychology
involved the study of the human spirit, soul or mind. This involves
things and functions not obviously visible to the physical senses. You
can't see a mind with one's eyes. You can't "feel" a thought with
one's hands. You can't place an emotion on a scale and weigh it. You
can't detect imagination, even with sophisticated electronic detection
devices. Just because some scientist's electronic device measures
various electronic pulses or signals when you are asked to imagine
something does not at all mean that they are "measuring imagination".
What they are measuring is some brain reaction that occurs when you
initiate an act of imagination. There is a relationship between the
mind and the brain, but this relationship is almost completely unknown
and not understood. The same is true for any chemical reactions or
events that occur concurrent with imagination, thoughts or feelings.
There is some relationship, but it is poorly understood. In fact, the
entire framework of the relationship is poorly conceived. Modern
"scientific" fields, since they haven't been able to study or detect
these things with the physical senses or laboratory measuring devices
have taken a drastic leap and declared that these things therefore
don't exist. They have therefore asserted that these things don't
deserve recognition, and should be ignored in any "legitimate" study
of man, the mind, and human behavior. John Watson, a typical
behavioral psychologist had this to say:
The extent to which most of us are shot through with a savage
background is almost unbelievable.... One example of such a religious
concept is that every individual has a soul which is separate and
distinct from the body.... No one has ever touched a soul, or seen one
in a test tube, or has in any way come into relationship with it as he
has with the other objects of his daily experience ....
The behaviorist asks: Why don't we make what we can observe the real
field of psychology? Let us limit ourselves to things that can be
observed, and formulate laws concerning only those things. Now what
can we observe? We can observe behavior - what the organism does or
says. And let us point out at once: that saying is doing - that is,
behaving. . . - John Watson, behaviorist
Strangely, the study of the mind has come into the peculiar position
of being a study that denies the mind! That's like biology denying the
existence of biological organisms, but going on pretending to still be
the science of biological organisms while actually dealing with
something else entirely. A subject can't exist if it denies the very
basis of its own existence by definition. That is the state of modern
western psychology and psychiatry. Mmmm? They can't and shouldn't
exist, but they do. The entire structure of these subjects as they
currently exist is a sham.
Let's take a closer look at this. We each are quite aware we have a
mind, emotions, and thoughts, even if we are not so clear or sure
about the "soul" and "spirit". We know we are aware and possess self-
awareness, but what the nature, qualities and potentials are of
awareness is largely anybody's guess. We each know we possess
consciousness. In fact, we are aware of our own consciousness as much
or more than anything else, yet modern "science" ignores and even
denies it. But the truth, despite what "science" or "professionals"
say, is that the mind exists to and for each of us as an obvious and
observable fact of direct experience. A quick look can tell us many
I doubt any of us would suggest we don't have a mind, awareness,
thoughts or feelings even though none of these things can be detected
or perceived with the physical senses or "scientific" measuring
gadgets. No third party observer can directly observe or detect any of
these things. We don't immediately run off and deny their existence,
and we correctly assume others have similar minds, thoughts, feelings
and emotions. They do. Modern psychologists and psychiatrists, for all
practical purposes, completely deny every aspect of the invisible
world known to you as your mind. It is invisible to physical
detection, but it does exist. In fact, it very much exists, but it is
not made up of anything physical. While the mind deals with and
relates to some subtle forms of energy, in the end it cannot be
understood within the framework of matter or energy. Of course, any
card-carrying materialist naturally hates that idea with a passion. To
them, "if I can't measure it then it doesn't exist".
There is constant activity within each of our "invisible worlds". We
are each in some way constantly analyzing problems, entertaining
thoughts of tomorrow's occurrences, recalling yesterday's failures,
wallowing in the sadness of a loss, concentrating on the creation of a
musical composition, or day-dreaming. There are ever changing feelings
and emotions about everything we experience, and an endless parade of
judgments and commentary about what we see. Actually, for many of us,
we have too much mind. It goes on and on and never seems to stop. It
is a constant source of images, memories and ideas intruding
themselves upon our awareness. Most of us can't control any of this
and simply accept as inevitable this continual parade of images and
ideas appearing across the landscape of our mind.
In a very real manner all problems with any mind, such as things
psychiatry calls "depression", "anxiety", "compulsive disorder",
"Attention Deficit Disorder" (ADD or ADHD), and even "suicidal
ideation", are ultimately and solely uncontrollable aspects of one's
own mind that intrude upon the person's awareness. It's not that these
things don't exist in some way, but they don't exist in the way
psychiatry understands and claims to solve them. A better way to
handle these problems would be to assist the person to increase
control over the content of their own mind. There are many ways to do
this, although they have never been all pulled together, adequately
investigated, codified and organized into a straight-forward workable
compilation of methods. Modern "science" has simply discarded the
notion of the mind, and from that point on, never bothered to
investigate it closely with the aim to understand, solve or improve
First, this invisible world is totally real. It is not imaginary or a
hallucination. My invisible world isn't directly real to you, and your
invisible world isn't directly real to me, but they are each real
nonetheless. The person who wants to argue this fact is simply a fool,
dull, unable to comfortably observe his own mind (because it is
possibly filled with degraded and nasty things), and probably addicted
to the objects of physical sensation and perception to the exclusion
of anything else (a modern materialist).
Second, this "invisible" world of mind involves many different
aspects, functions and potentials. Imagination, attention, intellect,
awareness, intention, reason, will, responsibility, memory, and many
other things exist in each of us. They are a vital and important part
of us. Some people might venture to say some of these things ARE us.
There is much to each of these areas and a short essay cannot begin to
even scratch the surface of their nature, functioning, possible
development and capabilities. But they definitely do exist and deserve
recognition and attention. Any subject calling itself "psychology"
would have to address these things in detail. The failure of modern
psychology and psychiatry to do so is glaringly apparent. These
subjects now only address behavior, physiology, genetics and
biochemistry, and the mind is of no real concern. That is a very sad
comment on the current state of "modern psychology".
Psychology Definition Altered
Let's return now to the dictionary definitions of "psychology".
From the Oxford American Dictionary:
1. the study of the mind and how it works.
2. mental characteristics, can you understand his psychology?
From the Concise Oxford Dictionary:
1. the scientific study of the human mind and its functions, esp.
those affecting behavior in a given context.
2. a treatise on or theory of this.
3.a. the mental characteristics or attitude of a person or group
3.b. the mental factors governing a situation or activity (the
psychology of crime)
Definition 1 has slyly added the idea of "affecting behavior". The
original definition had nothing to do with this. The wish to control
the minds and actions of others has entered into the equation.
From the American Heritage Dictionary:
1. The science that deals with mental processes and behavior.
2. The emotional and behavioral characteristics of an individual or
These definitions have further altered the true meaning. In actual
practice, modern psychology deals almost exclusively with physiology
(brain chemistry, neurology, genetics) and the behavior of the
biological organism (stimulus-response), completely disregarding and
ignoring the mind (man's inner self, and more to the point, man's true
and vital self). The dictionaries will sooner or later remove the
concept of "mind" completely from the definition following the lead of
"official" psychology as taught in western universities and colleges.
Members of the educational establishment write the dictionaries, and
the educational establishment is entrenched in modern psychological
theories. Let's return to the correct definition of the word.
Adhering to the strict definition of the word, psychology would
involve the study of man's invisible world as described above, and
nothing else. By definition this is what the study would deal with.
This is not an opinion or bias. This is according to exactly what the
word means and nothing else. Of course, relations to behavior could be
studied, and relations to brain activity could be studied, but the
subject in itself, by definition is or should be the study of the mind
or soul. A more correct name for the modern subjects of psychology and
psychiatry would be "people control" because that's what they actually
are. They are subjects involving how to alter thoughts, attitudes and
behavior. The intention is to control people. That in a nutshell is
the purpose of behaviorism. Naturally governments and totalitarians
love the subject. They also fund it in large way.
A Legitimate Study of the Mind
What would a study of the mind entail? It would investigate the
nature, functioning, and potentials of man's inner and invisible
mental activity. This would encompass such things as awareness,
attention, intention, imagination and concentration. It would develop
techniques for any individual to first, become aware of these
functions, and to also strengthen and expand their use and control of
these functions. It would also investigate the actual source of the
problems anyone experiences with their own mind. Again, these things
do exist, can be observed by anyone caring to examine their own mind,
and involve a tremendous uncharted area of possible exploration,
investigation, codification and summarizing. Freudian psychology and
psychotherapy, despite all its faults, at least recognized and
partially examined this realm. For a subject calling itself the
"science of the mind" to omit all this is a huge failure of modern
psychology. It's actually absurd and would be laughable if the results
of what they do weren't so insidious. It is equally laughable that
many of these overly-educated boobs talk together as if they are the
absolute pinnacle of truth about the subject of psychology. Sadly, too
many others accept their claims and treat them as if they actually
deserve respect, support and admiration. They don't.
This has nothing to do with mysticism, spiritualism (communicating
with the dead), astral travel, OBE (out-of-body experiences), or
psychic phenomena. It's not that these don't or can't exist, but a
serious and scientific examination of the mind need not involve or
explain these things.
It might eventually, but it isn't necessary. The point is you do have
a mind. It is more you than anything else. You can take away your
possessions, your family, your friends, your job, your arms, your
legs, your torso, your ears, your nose, your jaw, your skull, and the
one thing that remains, which always remains, and which is closest to
your basic identity, is your mind. This is the invisible space and
activity you are aware of every second of every day and that most
people experience as existing "in their head". This realm has been
grossly ignored by modern psychological studies and theories to our
continual detriment and harm.
Some of this may be hard for some readers to understand or accept
because an actual study and involvement with the mind isn't done at
all under the current subject of psychology. It's strangely absent
from most modern concepts of Man. This concept has been largely
eradicated from the "modern world view". Notions of the mind and
related ideas about it have been falsely equated to "religion",
"spiritualism" or "mysticism". We each have a mind. You know it, and I
know it. We each experience it and its many various aspects as
mentioned above. This is very simple and straightforward.
Modern psychology, due to absurd notions, flawed presumptions,
intellectual dullness, observational weakness, blatant prejudice, and
tremendous financial concerns ignores the mind completely, and instead
concentrates on physiology, and analyzing and controlling animal
behavior and responses to environmental factors. It's not that you
don't have a body and use it to play your part in life. You do. There
is physiology, and the environment does effect each and every one of
us. But the current subject pretends to be a study of the mind and
Man, and having failed completely at that has abandoned and finally
denied the very existence of Man's mind. Worse, it pretends to be the
final word on the subject, all the while attacking and suppressing any
honest study or subject that deals with the actual field of the mind.
Modern psychology and psychiatry claim validity by posturing as
"science". They claim to "study Man as an object of investigative
science". They fail at this because any legitimate science should and
would take into account all aspects of the subject it deals with. A
valid science would not choose to omit a major body of data from its
analysis, which is what they have done with the mind. Dealing with,
examining, and limiting observations to a specific smaller realm of
data, while ignoring a very large area of other data, which it finds
inconvenient because it fails to conform to their pet theories, is
exactly what has been done by the modern fields of psychology and
psychiatry. Failing to take the entire subject matter into account has
resulted in incorrect theories, faulty observations, flawed basic
assumptions, and unworkable results.
Considering that every decent, creative, and wonderful thing in
existence in the physical world started as an idea in the invisible
and unobservable mind of someone should make this denial of the mind
by "modern science" a major cause for alarm. This is doubly true when
one also considers that every problem in society largely has its
source in actual problems with an individual mind.
Education and the environment may heavily influence problems with
crime, violence, abuse, and sexual deviancy, but ultimately the final
basic source of these problem areas resides in the individual minds of
The Harmful Results of Denying the Mind
When the mind is denied, so ultimately is every good and decent thing
that emanate from it including creativity, self-determinism,
responsibility, morality, reason, and a value of life itself. The
current decadent notion of man without a mind or inner personality,
considered only as an animal or a biological organism has been
institutionalized into the theories and practices of modern
civilization in the media, sociology, education, government,
economics, health, and of course, psychology and psychiatry.
This has had disastrous consequences in the form of increasing crime,
divorce, violence, and decreasing levels of education, morality,
personal responsibility, social stability and sanity. Simply, when the
source of life itself for the individual and society is denied,
oppressive practices parading as "science" surface and the quality of
life and sanity rapidly deteriorates. This is the exact condition of
modern western civilization. Psychiatric lobotomy, electric shock
treatment, psychoactive drugs, behavioral manipulation, mass
population control, and social development instead of intellectual
education in the schools serve as a few examples.
It has become popular in modern society for people to toss off, giggle
about, ridicule and flippantly criticize any alternative subject of
the mind (i.e. yoga, meditation, ritual magic, Rosicrucianism,
Scientology, etc.) It is in vogue to consider these weird and unusual.
And true enough, some of them are weird. But the only really weird and
unusual thing is that modern man is so dull and heavily indoctrinated
that he is almost completely incapable of a) looking at anything
fairly, b) getting involved in it more than superficially, c)
examining it in some detail, d) remaining honest about what he
observes and e) deciding for himself based upon accurate personal
observations. This reduction in mental and observational ability is
also a result of modern educational practices. These practices are
direct descendants of modern psychological theories that view man as a
"social organism", and tend to ignore his intellectual and cognitive
abilities and development (i.e. aspects of a mind).
A leading psychological text begins by very carefully saying that
today the word "psychology" does not refer to the mind or soul, and
"has to be studied by its own history", since it no longer refers to
the soul, or even to the mind. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual
(DSM-IV), the psychiatric bible of "mental disorders" states,
Although this volume is titled the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual
of Mental Disorders, the term mental disorder unfortunately implies a
distinction between "mental" disorders and "physical" disorders that
is a reductionistic anachronism of mind/body dualism.
They readily admit ignoring the "mind" as a thing of itself to be
studied or understood. The current subject is spiritually bankrupt and
all that emanates from it denies life, and everything positive about
humanity. The logical conclusion of modern psychological theory is
that man is an animal to be genetically bred, controlled, herded, and
placed into suitable environments. This is the approach of the modern
social planner and behavioral controller. These are the guys who
governments fund, support and listen to. Is it any wonder things
aren't going so well on planet Earth?
Mr. P.D. Ouspensky says it well:
To begin with I must say that practically never in history has
psychology stood at so low a level as at the present time. It has lost
all touch with its origin and its meaning so that now it is even
difficult to define the term "psychology": that is, to say what
psychology is and what it studies. And this is so in spite of the fact
that never in history have there been so many psychological theories
and so many psychological writings. - The Psychology of Man's Possible
He also adds that psychology may be the "oldest science and
unfortunately, in its most essential features a forgotten science." A
brief look at history is in order so the reader can understand more of
what a true subject of psychology might entail.
The History of Psychology
For thousands of years psychology existed under the name of
philosophy. The Hindu Vedas contain the oldest record of man's
examination of mind and spirit. In India all forms of Yoga, which are
essentially psychology, are described as one of the six systems of
philosophy. Sufi teachings, which again are chiefly psychological, are
regarded as partly religious and partly metaphysical. In more modern
times some version of these systems, still largely following in this
same vein, can be found the subjects of Rosicrucianism, New Thought,
Science of Mind, visualization techniques, practical magick, and
If you found yourself flinching or reacting negatively to the mention
of any of these subjects, such as Yoga, Rosicrucianism, Scientology,
or any of the the many other alternative approaches to the mind and
reality, realize this is not necessarily because there is anything
actually strange or weird about these subjects. It is often largely
because modern psychology, psychiatry and affiliated proponents of
modern materialistic "science" have successfully applied black PR to
them to such a large degree. In fact, they have covertly attacked
these subjects for most of this century. An intelligent and objective
look into any of these fields, although sometimes initially confusing
largely due to the newness of the subject and difference in approach
to reality will result in a widened understanding of yourself (and Man
in general). Granted, you do need to and in fact you MUST weed out
some of the nonsense often added to these subjects. Once you do take
an honest look though it should become very obvious that modern
western psychology has little to do with that incredible universe that
exists a few inches behind your forehead. It must be mentioned that
over time most of these subjects and fields (i.e. Scientology,
Rosicrucianism, Transcendental Meditation, etc) have most definitely
suffered from some combination of a) gross alterations introduced by
self-appointed leaders following internal power struggles, b)
manipulation of views and information by the more influential members,
c) the sad tendency of some of the not-too-bright members to dictate
changes not part of the original information, and d) the use of the
subject and field to exert thought control and behavioral manipulation
on its members. These faults are observably true and easily seen in
the recent history of Scientology, though these faults exist in all to
some degree. Lastly though, don't throw out the baby with the
bathwater. While these all have serious flaws, don't use that as an
excuse to dismiss everything about them outright without any serious
examination. It takes careful and serious examination to separate the
valuable from the invaluable - and there is often much of both to be
The mind has been examined, studied, drilled and "expanded", at times
to the point of excruciating detail within many fields (i.e. Tibetan
Buddhist Yogic practices). This is not to say that due to language
barriers and the passage of time, that the information has not been
lost to minor or major degrees or that these studies weren't without
many errors, serious flaws, biases and differing opinions to start
with. The point is not whether any of these are perfect studies (none
are) or whether any of them have completed the task of researching the
mind (none have), but that the possibility for such a study most
surely exists, has been done before in various ways and to differing
degrees, and that modern psychology (and psychiatry) has nothing to do
with this field.
See The Errors of Modern Science and the Human Mind, which further
discusses the many flaws found within the "modern scientific" view of
Man and the human mind.
The Fraud of Modern Psychiatry
Psychiatrists will argue and say they use "mental" criteria routinely
to diagnose mental illness. They do. But we need to take a closer look
at what they do. They never observe the mind with an intention to
empower or strengthen its capabilities. This is covered in detail
elsewhere (DSM-IV Introduction).
Man and his societies cannot achieve happiness or success when the
most basic and true aspect of Man has been denied and oppressed
through institutionalized flawed belief systems parading as "science".
Modern psychological theories, in the form of psychiatry, genetics,
behavioral science, social science, (and used by humanists and
atheists to justify their positions):
1) are completely false omitting the key part of the subject (the
2 pretend to be authoritative when they are factually not this at all,
3) having been accepted and adopted by most major social and
government institutions, directly allow the possibility and existence
of the oppressive treatment of humanity. Man is viewed as nothing more
than a fancy animal, and is treated as an animal.
Ken Kesey's book, and the movie starring Jack Nichelson, One Flew Over
The Cuckoo's Nest, is not simply a social analogy portraying modern
society's dislike and ultimate destruction of anyone who consistently
upsets the status quo. It is this, but it also is exactly what the
story line indicates. It is a graphic story clearly showing the lack
of humanity, oppression, coercion, brute force and destructiveness of
the modern "mental health" field. Without the firm denial of Man and
his mind, they're largely the same thing in the end, none of these
things could ever occur. The movie contains many situations where the
status quo attempts to control those who choose to walk outside the
system and force them back into line. Modern psychiatry and psychology
primarily serve that function of control seemingly required by society
and civilization. It is not about help and betterment. It has never
been about help or betterment.
It should be about help and betterment.
Say NO To Psychiatry!
Pursuing Truth in all subjects...
©Gene Zimmer 1999 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
FTR, Foundation for Truth in Reality
- Prev by Date: Psychotropic Drug Use Soars In UK Teens
- Next by Date: Important Resources For Those With Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
- Previous by thread: Psychotropic Drug Use Soars In UK Teens
- Next by thread: Important Resources For Those With Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)