The Myth of Mental Health

Assumption, though, is too mild a word when it comes to the belief in mental health. The taken-for-granted-ness of this idea ranks with God, romantic love, the nuclear family, the goodness of free markets and the wickedness of Communism. For most people, suggesting that mental health might not exist would be like telling the kind of people who read blogs that they could have a meaningful life without the World Wide Web. The reality of mental health gives those of us without it a motivation to keep embracing pain because it builds character, it is part of the healing process, it will make us better people. —John SpurlockThe Myth of Mental Health (The Blue Monkey Review)

The “you have a right to be healthy” meme certainly works against the Church’s “human suffering is part of a divine plan” meme, the latter being an important part of a religious outlook that invites the contemplation of Christ’s suffering.

Modern society doesn’t have many universally accepted rituals for the preservation of order in our lives, but for those who practice the morning jog, the AA session, Friday night poker, or even the communal viewing of a popular TV show (I used to love watching “COPS,” which plays out a metanarrative of restoring virtue and honor) — these rituals serve much the same function.