A million thoughts run through our heads a day. Some positive, some mundane, some bizarre, some interesting, some downright deplorable and horrific. I have a few theories on OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) and its causes. Be forewarned, as with the rest of my writing, you may vehemently dislike or find it off-putting and/or absurd. But that is the nature of theory. I also believe that OCD happens more often than not due to one or a combination of , the following.
- A creative, intelligent mind that is bored with life
Let’s face it, for some of us who are particularly creative and intelligent, life in general is just not all that interesting. Day to day tasks and procedures are boring and very few things allow for any sort of deviation. Creative people with imaginative minds like to spice things up a bit and make things interesting. We already have creative and unique ways of thinking about the world, and thus how we approach and deal with even the smallest matters is anything but a ordinary or even logical. Regular, “normal” ways of doing things that seem easy or come naturally to others not only don’t come easy to us, but they aren’t as fun and/or are too boring. In a sense, OCD I think comes from a place of a creative and bored mind that is innovative in its way of developing new ways to cope with the world. While a large part of OCD involves intrusive thoughts, which I struggle with in particular, I believe there are two types of intrusive thoughts- those that disturb us, and those that spark ideas in us. If I didn’t have my intrusive bad thoughts, how would I have my intrusive “good” thoughts that eventually turn into tangible works of art? Hell, this blog started that way, and every story I have ever written has.
I firmly believe this is why so many engineers, inventors and creative/genius types and have OCD. Think of Howard Hughes for example. Obsession, which usually connotes negativity, (as in being obsessed with someone), is actually a form of genius in my opinion. Obsession allows you to focus on something so intensely for so long that it is quite possible you could end up becoming extremely knowledgeable about your obsession and maybe even an expert. Aspies tend to have obsessions/fixations and that usually manifest in special interests, and they are often savants and highly skilled and knowledgeable in their chosen special interest. Because I have OCD AND Apserger’s, I kind of have a double whammy when it comes to the obsession aspect. And I must admit that I haven’t used a lot of this to my advantage. MY OCD is particularly bad (I’ll talk about this in another blog post), but at the same time it has led me to develop quite a bit of knowledge in some of my obsessions/special interests (including linguistics, world cultures, ethnicities, traveling, movies, music).
If you examine rituals (compulsions that people with OCD do), you will discover aspects of creativity and magical thinking. For instance, the notion of having to turn around in a circle three times to avoid something bad happening to a relative, having to check that a three times that a door is locked, and if not three times, they somehow worry that the door may not be locked, not being able to function until everything is in the proper place, worrying that at any moment they could suddenly stab someone thus hiding all the knives in their house, worried that they could contract HIV from standing next to someone on the subway thus wearing a face mask. These are all common examples of obsessions and compulsions that people with OCD regularly engage in. See patterns here? All of these people are rather imaginative and creative in their particular obsessions, and from what I have found, obsessions and intrusive thoughts are often at their best when the mind isn’t busy enough. An already creative, anxious mind that doesn’t have enough to do or focus on will latch on to intrusive thoughts and like a runaway train their mind will follow on. For more about “latching on to intrusive thoughts”, keep reading, as I think that there is a separate, spiritual element to this at work.
2. Rigid personality with black and white/all or nothing thinking
Having a rigid personality is a common component of OCD, and is the core component of Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder. Rigidity is the inability to be flexible, be open to/ consider other points of view, change beliefs and behaviours and adapt. It is interesting because I think that as with the above, OCD is a way of being creative and adaptive to your environment. It is possible that once non-rigid thinking individuals weren’t always that way, that maybe the developed that way due to life experience. But then I’m sure there are individuals who were always that way. Either way it is interesting, and it comes down to nature vs. nurture and expressed vs. repressed genes. I know that my OCD developed when I was around 14, but my mother and grandfather both show signs of OCD as well as Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder. I wonder if maybe I never had the gene for OCD in the first place, but developed it after being raised by people who had it. Or maybe it was a repressed gene that became expressed due to environment, or maybe it was just genetics and I never stood a chance of not having it. Either way, I’ve been told that I think in terms of black and white, all or nothing.
Yes, demons. You can choose to out right laugh, deny their existence, consider it all “woo-woo” and hollywood, but your disbelief and mockery of the notion of demons doesn’t mean they don’t exist nor will it make them go away. Demons and demonic posession have been written about since who knows when, likely before the bible. Demons don’t exist in the material world, they get to humans through the immaterial world – in our minds, our thoughts, our dreams and our souls. Some might counter that if/when medication works, this proves that demons aren’t real. I like to think that medicine can sometimes help close channels in the brain that demons can infiltrate. Many with mental illness like OCD and neurological disorders like Asperger’s have brains that are structurally and chemically different, and tend to be more sensitive and vulnerable to demonic infiltration. Even average, neurotypical people can experience demonic interference, especially after experiencing trauma. There is also the reality that many Aspies and mentally ill people often are spiritual and have extra sensory perception, which whether or not you believe in it personally, opens up doors for all sorts of entities to enter. I personally believe demonic interference and possession goes something like this: demons know automatically who is more vulnerable to their influence, who is more “open” and they seek these individuals out because they know they will be more likely to get a hold of them.
What I think happens with OCD in particular is this: demons latch onto obsessive, unwanted, and intrusive thoughts. They get a “hook”- I even visualize it like a merry-go-round. All day thoughts circle around and around in your mind, and then there’s that one thought that troubles you. Because of your beliefs and/or chemical imbalance (as I said before I think there are many components to OCD), you can’t get this thought out of your head. A demon, ready and waiting, attaches itself onto that one thought of the merry-go-round of your mind, and eventually it gets out of control and spirals into an obsession. A demon is a minion of satan, and satan’s goal is confusion and destruction, basically the opposite of what God does.
It is said that for two/thirds of mentally ill people, therapy and or medication works, and for the other third, nothing seems to work. I believe I fall into that other third. I am pretty much just grinning and bearing it at this point. But after writing this and getting it out into the open, I feel better, and I hope this may help someone feel better too. I am particularly sensitive, have been diagnosed with a plethora of mental and neurological illnesses, am highly creative, and have experienced a lot of trauma, so I am a prime target for demons.
Examining why certain intrusive thoughts bother me in particular in the first place, why and how I came to develop certain odd rituals to somehow quell the distress my obsessions bring, and the fact that I may be susceptible to demonic influence helps me to understand my mind a bit more and to pause, and tell myself that I don’t have to engage in the obsession/compulsion. It helps me to recognize that if a particular thought has become out of control, its all I can think about (and my OCD is so bad it goes into delusional territory), then it is likely a demon has “hooked” onto that thought and is using it as a way to torture me and hopefully drive me insane/confuse me, with the end goal of killing myself. This is the ultimate goal of every demon.
Even though I write about demons and believe that they are real, I am struggling with the opposite of demons- my faith in God, Christ and Angels. My life has been rough, especially lately, but I have been getting more help than I have in a while as well as spiritual help. Maybe this is God finally answering me? I am getting more writing work and feel that it may just be the true calling that I have asked God to show me for so long. So there are some positives. But I also recently got fired, subsequently tried to hurt myself, wound up in two psychiatric hospitals, and I am still relatively broke and living at home, so in some ways I am still fighting and hoping for a miracle. I know I have to be grateful in life and have perspective, but even with all the good I have there is still so much that could be improved and I feel like God isn’t helping me. But I guess these are separate issues for another blog.
I hope this post gave you some insight and some food for thought.