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The Future of Psychiatry by Scott Shannon, MD

A schizophrenic person living in the United States today have significantly lower outcomes compared to those who are lived during the 1930s. More people at today are struggling when it comes to dealing with addiction, mental illness and having a dysfunctional system. Which gives us reason to believe that we need to find a new path to move forward when it comes to resolving the mental health issues.

The Default Mode Network serves as a hub made up many different functional hubs in the central nervous system which evolves as we age. This showed great surprise in the studies conducted back in the 1980s. It has significantly shown that our mind actually requires less energy when asked to do a task compared to when our brain is in a mind wandering state.

Psychedelics offers a powerful intervention that offers us more direct perception giving us better access to ourselves.

Future mental health calls us to have a greater understanding that mental health issues drive so much of human distress and chronic illness. Which asks us to treat their trauma in order to get better. Having a good diet plays a vital role in the set up and persistence of battling chronic mental illness.


So, if we were to create these three pillars of body mind spirit, it might look something like this body is the hardware, mind is the operating system and controller, and soul or spirit depending on which term you like is the application.

Looking at default mode network, we can see it’s an intrinsic brain network or hub. And it’s made up of many different functional hubs within the central nervous system. It changes and evolves as we age. So, the default mode network looks very different at eight and a 12, at 16 and 50. And now, what’s interesting about these intrinsic brain hubs default mode network is one and salience network is another there are quite a few of them in the brain is that this was the great surprise of neuroscience in the early studies of this in the 1980s. What they found is if you give the brain a formal task that’s challenging, such as a math problem, the energy demand and the energy output of the brain actually falls. So, it’s more restful for the brain to be doing math problems than it is to be in sort of the mind wandering state that most of us existed.

Today, psychedelics create this powerful tool that reduces the default mode network activity, but it’s a powerful intervention that offers us more direct perception. And the other thing that it offers us better, is better access to our self. And by self, I mean the largest as Jung described, and that when we’re under the influence of powerful psychedelics, we have these profound insights because we’re in greater connection with our true self, our deep self, and not our persona.

As we looked more broadly to the spiritual and soul level, we have to think about the big application, what’s the quality of meaning value and purpose? What’s the alignment of present self with deeper self? And this is where psychedelics can give us a wakeup call. We need to look at religious and spiritual beliefs, the current path of practice our called to service, our ability to love and how much we express joy. These are reflections of our application and its health and foundation.

So what future mental health is calling to us for, is a greater understanding that these mental health issues drive so much of human distress. Not just mental health distress, but chronic physical illness. And if we want to get people with chronic illness out of their stuck state, we can’t just treat their diabetes or their heart disease, we have to go back and treat their trauma, and they’re not going to get better, and they’re not going to cease to be frequent fliers or the medical system until we can do core level healing. We need to know that diet is such a profound factor in the setup, and the persistence of chronic mental illness, and that we need to think about social emotional education as a curriculum in elementary schools and that early monitoring of attachment neglect is critical and people can heal and that fun matters as we move forward.