Jan Scholten

Diseases as personalities

There are many ways to look at diseases, their origin and essence. The mainstream view of regular medicine is that of a material defect, physically or chemically, the view that we are our body and brain.
This view is quite strange, especially when applied to itself. Then that view becomes only an electrical current in a brain, hardly anything to consider seriously.

In homeopathic practice it becomes obvious that the origin of diseases lies in the mind, the emotions, thoughts and beliefs. An even wider view is that of looking at diseases as personalities. A personality has a view, talent and goal. It is a way of being.

The first time we encounter a personality it can become fascinating. We can get fascinated by its talents, views, possibilities and colours. It is a bit like falling in love.

The second phase is that we like to be able to do the same, to become as strong and well-versed as that personality. We adapt to it and adopt it. When that development goes further we identify with that personality, we become it. Then we become fixed and become rigidly like that personality. We cannot imagine to be different. We are that personality.
For most people this is so normal that they don’t even consider the possibility that they are not their personality. In this state personality is disease, or character is disease.
This can be linked to the old vision that people are possessed, not by something external but by a personality, an emotional and belief state, a way of being.
Adapting a personality also leads to being occupied. One cannot be open and free anymore to what is present here and now. We are busy with our personality, with what the personality wants. It brings us outside of ourselves, being in the state of the personality. We feel that we are not being ourselves.
In Buddhism the concept of vasana is connected to this theme. Vasana means a tendency in the mind, a kind of addiction. Its meaning is that of impressions of the past, formed by past perceptions, knowledge derived from memory. It is a dwelling of the mind on a subject, a thinking of something, a longing for, expectation, desire or inclination. In any case the mind is occupied, engaged, busy, possessed.

Every personality has a drive, wants to reach or have something, wants to belong. A mother personality wants to have children. A king personality wants to become a leader. A child personality wants to be safe in his family, house and with his parents. This is the drive aspect of a personality, the basis of disease. It is a desire, a mind force to go away from something, to go to something, to have something or get rid of something. It is the motivator of action.

Gradually the personality becomes a limitation. We cannot behave otherwise anymore. Then it starts giving conflicts, as it is not appropriate anymore. It gets used in all situations, including those that are not suitable for it. It expresses itself as not being open to new things, new ways of thinking and handling. It is as if one is occupied, as if one is addicted. An old term for this was being possessed.

The next phase is that we start disliking the personality since it brings trouble. We start seeing it as bad. We try to stop the identification but as the personality is still attached it works on. In this phase we often start criticising others with similar behaviour. It is the projection of the negative side in us, the shadow. We start blaming others who do the bad things. It is like ex-smokers fighting smoking, or ex-alcoholics fighting alcoholism, or vicars preaching against evil.
In this phase the personality is often projected onto someone else, a friend, a partner or parent. The other is doing the bad things to us that we don’t want to have ourselves anymore.

It can also come back to us in the form of accidents or events. When the personality, is completely denied or unconscious it can only express itself this way, as accidental events from the outside. A similar situation is seen in family constellations. A theme, a personality, is present in a family and gets expressed in one of the family members. It is present in the field and has to become conscious.

One has often more than one personality. Groups have personalities as well. Families can have a personality as one can see in family constellations. That family personality is taken on by one of the family members the most. It can shift later onto another family member.
Addiction personalities are often situation dependent. Addicted people are often adviced not to back to their old surroundings after having been treated for their addiction as that often triggers their old personality.
Cultures have their personalities. They are difficult to see when one is member of that culture and cannot step out. People who represent the culture personality take on a specific role and can be very charismatic.

After having thought about the identification process it became clear that it can be linked to the 7 Phases.
1. Fascination.
2. Adaptation.
3. Adoption.
4. Fixation.
5. Limitation.
6. Shadow.
7. Accidents.

Cure happens when we see that we have identified with a personality and let it go. This happens when we become conscious of the identification and the realisation that we are not that personality.
The result is that we feel more free and light. The energy that used to go to the personality gets freed up and thus we have more energy.
We feel more ourselves.