By Michael O'Callaghan

Madeline Goldstein
Evanston, Illinois, USA:

"This is one of the most fabulous web pages I've ever seen! The interview with John Perry completely blew my mind. In 1994 my daughter, Cristina, 19 was diagnosed with leukemia. The best chance for a cure was a bone marrow transplant. She's had a very long, slow, difficult recovery. Reading Perry's piece was like reading everything that was already in my mind. Like he had pulled it out from my mind and written it down. What he writes about is everything I've experienced as the 'primary caregiver' of someone who's diagnosed with a life threatening illness. I am extremely grateful for this web page and for the information that's out there. My daughter and I have been living a 'nonordinary' experience for the last four years. It's been like a four-year schizophrenic episode instead of a six-week one. But it makes so much sense. I feel like I've been liberated. My daughter and I have been through a massive re-organization. I could go on forever, but I would love any and all information about Global Vision as you can send me at your earliest convenience."

Simon Philipotts

"I am so looking forward to reading your book as I have a special interest in these experiences and I could go on and bore you for ages with it but I won't. Jesse Watkins' 10 day journey was to my mind an amazing archetypal experience and you do not have to be schizophrenic to experience it - even Carl Jung went through "the dark night of the soul". By the way have you read "Operators and things" a real classic schizophrenic adventure? Many thanks for your advice."

Mara Lindstrom
Santa Cruz, California, USA:

"I just discovered your interview with John Perry on the web. Thank you so much for making this available. I am a psychotherapist and have a niece with schizophrenia. I am having a hard time finding a treatment center or a practitioner with Perry-like views. Do you have any leads for me? My niece lives in Los Angeles, but we are open to any locality that can really help her. Thank you for your life's work."

Palo Alto, California, USA:

"I came across the name Diabasis in Grof's book "Spiritual Emergency" . Because I have a dear relative who has been dealing with psychosis (now officially diagnosed as schizophrenia) I decided to type the name into the internet pool. I was delighted and grateful to come upon your web-site information detailing your interview with Dr. Perry. My question to you is: do you know of any such place modelled on Diabasis that still exists? Thank you for your assistance."

Janet Love

"I am writing to express my interest in joining your research programme and vision.

I am a transpersonal psychotherapist, autogenic therapist and life coach. I have set up a series of workshops called "Does Someone You Love Have Schizophrenia" looking at the transpersonal effects in the family as a result of the so called illness.

My son who is 24, is currently undergoing an episode of schizophrenia. He has been ill for two years and his treatment plan is entirely non psychiatric and drug orientated. It has been an extremely difficult and arduous journey to find support and practitioners in England who subscribe to the spiritual aspect of the illness and the orthomolecular approach. I have spent the last two years exploring every alternative avenue I can.

Are you holding a meeting in Ireland to discuss this, if so I would be very interested to be included. I look forward to hearing from you."

Name withheld

"I stumbled across your website and for the first time understand this combined aversion yet yearning for "the end". I had a breakdown in 1994. It was very similar to what you describe but I was treated the "conventional" way. I feel as though I have reached "the other side" of sanity and follow spiritual (but not obsessive, cranky) precepts for living. I have studied alchemy, and other mystical subject etc etc but never has it all made as much sense as it did this morning when I read your incredible and modest notes. Thank you for helping me along this road. How can I get involved? I am a writer (journalist) if you want to deploy that."

Name witheld
Maryland, USA:

"Hello. My name is... I live in the Baltimore /Washington area of Maryland. I have a 21-year-old daughter who had her first psychotic break at age 17. If I had been armed with the knowledge of this Jungian, even Shamanic approach at the time, I might have handled things differently, assuming there were any such supportive places to which I could have taken her. She came to us after having smoked pot with friends, and had what she called her "falling out". After smoking pot that night, [which she did a lot], she passed out, and had what she described as something similar to a near-death experience, seeing a light, and hearing voices calling out to her. She came home with her eyes moving somewhat rapidly from side to side, tangential thinking, delusions about various things, such as hearing the radio talking to her, having difficulty remembering what my wife and I had just said to her, acting as if she was brushing unseen things off her, etc.

We thought it might have been a drug reaction, the pot possibly laced with something, though I still hesitated taking her to the hospital .In a couple days, though, I did take her, and they tested her for various drugs, apparentlly only finding pretty high concentrations of pot in her body. She was placed on Zyprexa, an antipsychotic, and stayed in the hospital for a week-and-a-half.

When she came out, my wife and I looked for alternative ways of handling this, researched on the internet, and focused on an orthomolecular approach, and found a psychiatrist, prominent in the area for his orthomolecular approach, and she had extensive metabolic testing, and was found to have some significant nutritional deficiencies, candida yeast overgrowth, and some other things, was placed on an extensive nutritional regimen, yet even this doctor kept her on some psychiatric medication, which over the years she has been compliant with only off and on. We even placed her for three months in a holistic [nutritionally and dietarily] place called Earth House in New Jersey, based on Carl Pfeiffer's nutritional approach. Even then, though, the overseeing psychiatrist still kept her on an antipsychotic and mood stabilizer. Her diagnoses over time have ranged from bipolar with psychotic elements to schizoaffective, to, now leaning to schizophrenic. She has been hearing voices, having delusions, hyposexual episodes, violent episodes, etc. She seems in many ways to be getting worse, with less cognitive ability. over time we have brought in healers, present and remote, even took her to a Shaman. I know that an underlying emotional/psychological therapy approach has been one area not explored sufficiently. I've often suspected, and have read some things to the effect of a "chicken or the egg" connundrum, meaning that even if brain scans and metabolic testing do show evidence of some pathology, who's to say which came first, the physical pathology, or some emotional/spiritual crisis causing physical changes? She has always been a very sensitive child, in many ways.

The thing is, what do I do now? The supportive therapeutic centers mentioned in the Global Vision site focused on people as they were just going through a first psychotic break, or spiritual crisis. What about someone like my daughter, whose been dealing with this [along with us] for four years, with the various treatments. Can we still try the Jungian, supportive approach, and if so, where can we take her now?

I apologize for the length of tis email, but I didn't know how else to state all this. I would very much appreciate any direction you can give us. We really want to help her, and we are going through a very rough time with er right now.

Thank you for your prompt reply."

Name withheld (electrical engineer)
East London, South Africa:

"'When the Dream Becomes Real' is most interesting and the project regarding a global consciousness on these issues is no doubt very critical. About fourteen years ago I suffered a psychotic breakdown. About a year after this, I suffered another psychosis. It has taken some time and much effort to repair my life, and establish a professional career. I am quite certain that John Perry's approach is correct. I find his work to be of inestimable value".

Melita Tulikoura, TV Producer
FST Television, Yleisradio, Finland:

"I read your interview with Dr. John Weir Perry with interest. I work as a journalist at Finnish Television, with medical, social and philosophical questions. I have a talk show / discussion programme where I try to deal with topics that are important, at least to myself (and apparently to many others). And I really got interested in Dr. Perry's thoughts and methods concerning schizophrenia and acute psychoses. I have heard about the way patients are treated in India, where the whole family move out into the wilderness, spending at least six weeks with their relative, letting him go through his 'thing' in a natural way and always beeing there for him. I thought that the similarity between this Indian method and that of Dr. Perry is remarkable."

Joshua Hayden Beil, Psychologist
Santa Cruz, USA:

"Over two years ago, I had a 'psychotic break' which virtually all of the clinicans I have seen or talked to have diagnosed as a major manic episode. Interestingly, my experience also had 'schizophrenic' overlaps: auditory and visual hallucinations. Many of the inital stages of this experience, however, were of a spiritual nature. The mysteries of the universe were revealing themselves to me, and my relationship with God had never been more clear. Anyway, to make a long story short, I deteriorated mentally and physically resulting in a forced hospitalization and an abundance of anti-psychotic medicines. I agree that our society's treatment of severe mental illness is certainly a human rights issue - I was taken away on a 5150 (California's penal code for someone to be detained against their will if they are a danger to themselves or others), and held at a psychiatric facility for two weeks. I often wonder myself whether medication would have been necessary if a facility like Diabasis had been available to me at the time. Thankfully, I returned to this 'reality' (considering I was in another galaxy, so to speak!) and have been off of all medication since then. Needless to say, my experience has left me with many unanswered questions, and my study of psychology is enabling me to pursue these inquiries. I recently graduated from the University of California at Santa Cruz with a BA in Psychology, and am quite interested in alternative treatment approaches."

Chris Leo, Student
Southern Oregon University, USA:

"I've been refered to the John Weir Perry interview on you web site. I've gotten a lot out of it , and have used it as a reference to a paper I recently wrote on 'The Ethnopsychology of Schizophrenia.' Thank you!"