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WHY the Alarming Increase in Mental Illness?
Plain Truth Magazine
January 1965
Volume: Vol XXX, No.1
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WHY the Alarming Increase in Mental Illness?
Richard H Sedliacik   
Church of God

Died: December 23, 2010
Office: ACE - Evangelist

Managing Editor of the Ambassador College Correspondence Course.

One half of hospital beds are occupied by mental patients! Why? What's causing all this fear, frustration, mental break-down? It's time we learn HOW to have a healthy, happy mind!

   MORE people are in U.S. hospitals suffering from mental illness than from polio, cancer, heart disease and all other diseases combined!
   But even more alarming are the estimates that one out of every TEN Americans is destined to become a mental patient during his lifetime! The true picture of mental health in the United States, and the world, is absolutely appalling!
   But why?
   Why, in this age of scientific "enlightenment" and technological and medical "advancements," should the incidence of mental illness be skyrocketing?

Your Mind IS Important

   This shocking tragedy was disclosed in the widely publicized book Every Other Bed. It is by Mike Gorman, executive director of the National Association of Mental Health. Mr. Gorman took the title from the statistical FACT that one half of all hospital beds in the U.S. are occupied by mental patients!
   What are the basic reasons for the alarming increase in mental illness today? How can you keep your mind healthy, sound, mature? Understand.
   Mental problems most often begin with WRONG THINKING! This past decade has witnessed the age of avoidism unwillingness to face facts and make decisions. This tragic state of mind exists at all levels of society from the Presidency down! "Let's avoid controversy" is the slogan of our era!
   Avoidism is the very nature of mental illness! The sick patient, unwilling, and sometimes unable, to face the problems of the real world, retreats into the unreal jungles of his own mind. Whenever the real world is blighted with avoidism, it provides the precise climate in which mental illness can flourish.
   Now consider another tragedy in our thinking. It is called passivism. It is characteristic of those who just sit idly by. The television becomes the family altar. Hundreds of thousands of children are allowed to spend more time worshipping its mystic light than they spend sitting in school!
   Passivism is both a symptom and a cause of mental illness. Scientists, in their mad quest for physical knowledge, have actually produced madness in a sane person by putting him in an environment where there is absolutely nothing to do a total state of passivity! Much of what is wrong with the English-speaking world today is sloth, apathy, dullness of mind, mental laziness! It is worse than mere physical laziness.
   Another vital factor not conducive to mental health is the blurring of standards. People no longer have precise ideas of good and evil. Many are guilt-ridden because of conduct which they aren't sure was wrong. Or right.
   The hydrogen bomb is the symbol of our age of mental sickness. People feel themselves powerless to deal with such massive forces. They try to quit thinking about them. They go about their usual routines, but the terror still lives in their subconscious minds. This fear is a factor in the desire of so many to GET as much as they can RIGHT NOW.
   ... Why work hard to achieve a future that will be blown apart?
   Most people have never learned how to DISCIPLINE their minds, or their emotions! They haven't learned to channel their thoughts and energies into the job to be done. Instead, their thoughts turn inward toward the SELF. Their emotional frustration increases accordingly.
   The reaction of fear, frustration and helplessness in the face of these trying situations is a major cause of mental breakdown and of the deep sense of insecurity that plagues nearly everyone.

One BASIC Cause

   Of course the ROOT CAUSE of all mankind's fears, frustrations and feelings of "emptiness" is unknown to the scientists, psychiatrists and doctors. Not even the clergy seems to understand! People have no purpose no goal in life. They are absolutely cut off from God. God is unreal to them! To the basic question, "why am I here?" they can only answer, "I DON'T KNOW."
   There it is!
   Here lies the basic reason for all the twisted, unhappy lives and mental anguish in the world today. Hopelessness. No understanding of what lies beyond!
   Man needs to know who, what and why he is! To know the very purpose for his existence. To know why he feels "empty" and what he needs to fill that vacuum that SPIRITUAL VOID which exists within his mind!

God's Purpose for Mankind

   God made mankind for a purpose! That great and wonderful purpose for human existence was first revealed in the Garden of Eden. God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness..." (Gen. 1:26).
   God made man His greatest masterpiece of physical creation of the dust of the ground, in the clay image of Himself in the form and shape of God. But man was made incomplete. Man was made to need God to receive the Holy Spirit of God.
   God, on that sixth day of recreation week, had only BEGUN His master creation. God made man a perfect physical creation. But he was not yet a perfect SPIRITUAL creation! God made mankind for the purpose of being fashioned by the Spirit of God into the very character "image" of God into very spirit-born sons in God's Family!
   Job realized God was forming a special creation in his life when he said, "If a man die, shall he live again? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my CHANGE come. Thou shalt call [at the resurrection], and I will answer thee: thou wilt have a desire to the work of thine hands!" (Job 14:14-15)
   Notice the latter part of Job 14:14-15: "Thou wilt have a desire to the work of thine hands." That "work" was Job! Job knew he was merely a piece of divine workmanship character in the hands of the Creator. He is yet to be completed a perfect spiritual character at the resurrection! How? Through the power of the Holy Spirit. Man was born a piece of pliable clay to be molded in the hands of the Master Potter! (Isa. 64:8)
   But what is the Holy Spirit? Exactly why do we need it?
   How does it fill that great "void"?

The POWER of God

   Practically no one today understands what the Holy Spirit of God really is. Many vaguely think of it as something "mystic" a nebulous conception of nothingness a hovering, fluttering, "holy ghost"!
   Most people do not realize the Holy Spirit is the tremendous source of divine power dynamic, SUPERNATURAL POWER that can become a part of our very minds!
   The Holy Spirit is the essence of God His very life, His mind, His nature and His love. The Spirit of God is the very power God used to create the universe! (Heb. 11:3)
   God is Creator. But the Father created all things by and through Jesus Christ, the "Word" (John 1:1, 3) the divine "Spokesman."
   So it was God the "Spokesman" Who "spake, and it was DONE" (Psa. 33:9). He is the One who said, "Let there be light" and the Holy Spirit moving upon the face of the waters performed the command, and "there was light" INSTANTLY! (Gen. 1:1-3) And Christ was the One who formed Adam in the Garden of Eden.

We Must Be Begotten

   The miraculous spiritual creation God is beginning to perform in man must first begin through his spiritual "begettal" by the Holy Spirit.
   We are like an egg. The human mind is the nucleus in that egg. When God begets us by His Holy Spirit, our minds are impregnated, so to speak, by the "seed" or germ of eternal life. It is the begettal of the spiritual life of God within our minds! We are then compared to a newly begotten physical babe a fetus in its mother's womb. It is then that we become the spiritually begotten "sons of God" (I John 3:1; Rom. 8:14-17) just as much as a begotten human baby becomes a son of its human father!
   And just as a physically begotten baby receives the nature of its human father, so the spiritually begotten unborn son of God also receives the divine nature of his spiritual Father God! "Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature..." (II Pet. 1:3-4).
   The new life must grow. We are now begotten by God's Spirit. But we must grow spiritually until we can be born of God at the resurrection. We will then attain to the very likeness and stature the very COMPOSITION of God! "Beloved, now are we the [begotten] sons of God, and it doth not yet appear [just as an unborn human baby does not yet 'appear'] what we shall be: but we know that, when He [Christ] shall appear, we shall be like Him!" (I John 3:2)

Spirit Rejected in Eden

   God made His Holy Spirit available to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. All they had to do to receive eternal life was to obey God by partaking of the fruit of the symbolic "tree of life" (Gen. 2:9, 16-17).
   But because of rebellious human nature, Adam and Eve REJECTED it! Instead, they partook of the wrong tree the fruit of the "tree of good and evil" (Gen. 2:17; 3:3, 6, 7).
   Because of their disobedience, God withheld His Spirit of love and eternal life from man. From the very minute mortal man disobeyed, he was CUT OFF from spiritual contact with God. He was cut off from further access to the spirit of God and the gift of eternal life.
   Ever since then, God has allowed man to go his own way. God wants man to thoroughly learn his lessons of living without the Holy Spirit before He really sets His hand to save the world! For nearly 6,000 years now, men have seen by hard experience the RESULTS of living without the Holy Spirit! There has been war not peace. Death not life.
   Why? "For to be carnally minded is DEATH; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind [the natural, unspiritual mind with which each of us was born] is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God [the law which would bring life and peace] neither indeed can be" (Rom. 8:6-7).
   Even though Jesus Christ came nearly 2,000 years ago to herald the arrival of the Holy Spirit once again for all who will accept it, the majority still has sought the ways of the flesh the carnal, unspiritual mind which have produced the fear, worry, frustration and spiritual emptiness the world experiences today!

Man Needs God's Holy Spirit

   All mankind DESPERATELY NEEDS God's Holy Spirit! A human mind united with and guided by the Holy Spirit from God leads to peace, happiness, spiritual power, and eternal life!
   Notice the "fruits" or results of our having God's Holy Spirit. "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, PEACE, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance" (Gal. 5:22-23).
   But the carnal mind, without God's Spirit, is HOSTILE toward God and cannot think clearly. To put it plainly, we are not fully sound-minded until we obtain God's mind! The "sound mind" which comes through God's Spirit (II Tim. 1:7) means just what it implies. It is a truly balanced mind. The man possessing it is a balanced man a WHOLE MAN united with and guided by the supreme mind of God Almighty!
   Yes, man must come to realize that the spiritual power available through the Holy Spirit is the power needed for true sanity, self-mastery, for accomplishment, success, abundant joy, peace of mind, and the HAPPINESS we all desire!
   Do you begin to grasp how much better your life would be if you were really in spiritual contact with your Creator?

How to Insure a Sound Mind

   The time is now here! The Holy Spirit can now become a part of your very mind! It will free you from fear, frustration, and the threat of mental illness plaguing mankind today. It ALONE can insure you a healthy, happy and sound mind. But there are prior conditions to receiving it!
   First, you must "thirst" for sincerely desire more than anything else God's Holy Spirit! Jesus said: "If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink. He that believeth on me, as the Scripture bath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water! But this spake He of the SPIRIT, which they that believe on Him should receive" (John 7:38-39).
   Peter then clearly defined the way to receive this Spirit of Power: "Repent, and be BAPTIZED... and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit" (Acts 2:38).
   When we are reconciled to God by the death of Christ as a result of our sincere repentance of past sins, faith in Christ's shed blood for the remission of our sins, and our submitting to the symbolic burial of our sinful life in the waters of baptism; then God is more willing to give us His Spirit than we are willing to give bread to our children! (Luke 11:10, 13)
   But remember, God gives His Spirit only "to them that OBEY Him" (Acts 5:32). No one who continues to flagrantly break God's law of love has received the Spirit of God the spirit of a sound mind!
   So if you are willing to obey your Creator, if you are willing to surrender your will to "live by every word of God" and let the Bible be the AUTHORITY in your life, then God will certainly give you His Spirit His power in your life!

Enroll Without Delay!

   You need to know more about the Holy Spirit and God's purpose His PLAN for mankind!
   You need to understand the answers to the really BIG questions concerning your very existence that you have always wondered about the meaning of today's chaotic world conditions and how you can ESCAPE the nuclear holocaust awaiting this present generation! How? Enroll in the Ambassador College Bible Correspondence Course.
   There will be no obligation on your part. But we expect you to STUDY your Bible at least one-half hour a day. Remember, this is a BIBLE STUDY Course!
   So don't put off your enrolled in the Ambassador College Bible Correspondence Course. Do it right now before you FORGET!

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Plain Truth MagazineJanuary 1965Vol XXX, No.1
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