Questions tagged [psych-mentalhealth]

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How do we reconcile mental illness with free will?

A somewhat general question that I'm sure will have a specific answer. I'm wondering, doesn't mental illness nullify our free will? Can we say those that hallucinate, living in seemingly completely ...
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How should one inflicted with DID (Dissociative identity disorder) pray? [duplicate]

I know someone with DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder - a mental disorder characterized by at least two distinct and relatively enduring personality states) and want to try to get her to pray. But,...
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Taking ADHD medicine on Shabbos (ex: Adderall/ Ritalin)

Following on the heels of recent questions "Why restrict medicine on Shabbos?" & "Is clinical depression medication allowed on Shabbos?" What would the story be re: taking ADHD medicine such as ...
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1answer
115 views

Is someone who has clinical depression allowed to take an antidepressant on Shabbos?

It’s my understanding that there’s two main categories of non-life threatening illnesses: מיחוש בעלמא, “average pain,” and נפל למשכב, one who is so sick that he’s unable to get out of bed. The former ...
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Healthy consequence of the Akeida?

Are there any comment in the Torah, the Mishna or the Gemara, that a post traumatic syndrome disorder was divinely avoided to both Abraham and Yitzhak in the aftermath and in the long run after the ...
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1answer
85 views

What are the requirements for divorcing a brain-damaged woman?

What are the requirements of the Beth din for a man to divorce a women who is brain damaged? If she has parents, can they go with her to the Beth Din to hear what is being said. Who represents the ...
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1answer
79 views

Insane People and Free Choice?

We know that Hashem gives everyone free choice. But when examining the traits of an insane person, it is clear that someone can be so mentally ill that it is impossible for them to control what they ...
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62 views

Regretting a Mitzvah Anxiety

Are there sources for someone who constantly has anxiety about regretting his mitzvot? To better explain this, one who keeps doing mitzvot but has an anxiety that he regrets the mitzvot when he ...
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1answer
95 views

OCD and Netilat Yadayim

If a person has OCD and tends to ritually wash their hands a thousand times because they feel they didn't do it right and they accidentally touch something wet in the sink after or have the worry they ...
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What does Judaism have to say about ADHD?

I have been diagnosed with AD/HD. I have often struggled in school and social interations. Even relationships have often not been smooth for me. What sources does Judaism have about AD/HD or learning ...
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1answer
67 views

May someone say the prayer for the ill for someone who is emotionally “ill”?

Lo Aleinu. Let's say someone's friend's teen-age daughter died from a terrible sickness. The parents have been distraught and "disabled" for year because of the emotional trauma. They isolate ...
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2answers
958 views

Can a bully be forced to pay for psychologist visits?

When Reuven physically damages Shimon, he must pay for, among other things, the physical pain caused by his actions (tza’ar), the embarrassment caused by his actions (boshes), and reimbursement for ...
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Is Scientology Avodah Zarah for Jews?

Scientology, the religion founded by L. Ron Hubbard, has similarities to some forms of Buddhism in that it de-emphasizes the worship (or even acknowledgement of the existence) of any specific gods in ...
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1answer
582 views

Listening to music during year of aveilut

Is one allowed to listen to music during aveilut after the shloshim for therapeutic porpuses? Is there any difference between the way ashkenazim and sephardim hold?
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2answers
306 views

Demon Possession in Judaism

Some religions, particularly Christianity, have a concept in which demons or evil spirits can enter a person's body and take control of them. Does Judaism have a concept similar or like this? The ...
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1answer
95 views

The only mitsva is to get better for person in severe psychiatric episode [closed]

Let's say that someone ch''v suffers from a severe psychiatric disorder, which can alter judgment and reality testing, e. g. Schizoaffective disorder (elements of schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder)...
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1answer
173 views

Abortion on grounds of emotional instability/wellbeing [duplicate]

Is there ever a point of emotional instability beyond which a women may have an abortion? I know all cases are different but here are some possible examples: A) she struggles too much with the ...
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3answers
104 views

‫ is self esteem good or bad?

The penultimate Lubavitch rebbe writes in his principles of education (Chapter 10, starting here), that to feel down is not good but to feel secure and have a healthy self esteem is not good either. ...
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Prohibition of causing mitzta'er on Yom Tov

I have heard about a Biblical prohibition on causing oneself to suffer during Yom Tov. The example that always comes up for this mitzvah is the permission not to sleep in the sukkah if it causes one ...
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3answers
1k views

“Gay” people in the Torah, Talmud, Kabbalah?

What do the Torah, Talmud, Kabbalah say about people that "are gay" or have the desire to live that way? I'm not asking if it's a sin. I'm wondering how they "became gay" and how they can change? (I'...
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163 views

Online shiurim on the topic of religious OCD

Would anyone know of any online Shiurim on the topic of religion-related Obsessive Compulsive Disorder.
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1answer
88 views

Where does human consciousness derive from according to kabbalistic teachings?

In the kabbalah there is an extensive writing on how a human's soul derive from different worlds, Nefesh - Assiyah, Ruach - Yetzira etc. Then we also have the distinction between the G-dly soul and ...
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1answer
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“The feelings reveal the soul.”(Pieseszner Rebbe). Is this idea accepted by contemporary Orthodox thought?

In “Experiencing the Divine: A Practical Jewish Guide,” by Rabbi Kalonymus Kalman Shapira (the Pieseszner Rebbe), translated by Yaacov Dovid Shulman, the Rebbe says, (p 28): Every feeling that is ...
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Is it permitted for a male to have a female therapist?

It is forbidden to be secluded with another woman (excluding a woman that it is permitted e.g. wife, mother, grandmother etc.). This is known as yichud. It is permitted though, provided the area is ...
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4answers
657 views

Loshon hara to a therapist

Is saying things that would otherwise be considered loshon hara permitted in the context of mental health therapy? I am not familiar with the details of therapeutic schools, but I understand that ...
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2answers
350 views

When one is home alone, does the Torah discourage the eating of bizarre food mixtures?

Note: If you're going to be eating a meal soon, you might not want to read this question, and you (especially) might not want to click through to the "Secretive food concocting" Wikipedia article. Why?...
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3answers
900 views

Is Transcendental Meditation kosher?

Transcendental Meditation is a popular form of meditation that, many practitioners claim, relieves psychological stress. Although it was founded an Indian guru, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, it is not at all ...
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4answers
459 views

Naming a baby boy before a deferred bris

The typical practice when a baby boy is born is to refrain from calling him by any name until he is given a name at his bris. In cases where the bris is deferred (e.g. for health reasons) for an ...
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2answers
182 views

Judaism and dementia

Are there any books/articles that discuss dementia from a Jewish perspective? I am looking for a perspective that include coping with, and relevant hashkafa. The intended audience being not the sick ...
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2answers
250 views

Mental Telepathy

In Rabbi Immanuel Schochet's introduction to the fundamentals to proving religion. He mentions mental telepathy as a phenomenon that although uncommon does exist. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=...
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1answer
423 views

Does Judaism adjudicate cases involving mental anguish?

If a non-physical act, such as exposure to viewing something which the current medical field would deem traumatizing, is intentionally perpetrated by one person on another, are there any legal ...
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1answer
144 views

May a person with a nature of getting angry be a dayan?

I sit in a beis din with a dayan who gets angry very easily. He can't seem to control his anger, causing great anguish to the litigants, and a big chilul Hashem at times. I have been asked to approach ...
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796 views

On Shabbat, if one can't sleep, may one consume valerian tea? Valerian root powder? Other non-prescription remedies?

Occasionally, on Shabbat, I've had trouble sleeping. The Doctors Book of Home Remedies (20th anniversary edition) (Rodale, 2010) includes a section about insomnia, which includes a long list of home ...
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1answer
240 views

Mental Disability and Exemption from Mitzvot

To what extent are the mentally disabled exempt from mitzvot, and what mitzvot are they exempt from? At what level of mental disability does this exemption kick in if it exists, and is it gradual ...
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531 views

How does Judaism treat depression?

Other than through music are there any recommendations in Tanach, the gemarah or other commentators which discuss the best ways, meaning most likely to succeed, to treat depression?
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Do sociopaths/psychopaths lack “דעת” of Good and Evil?

As YeZ points out in this answer, "daat" is the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Do sociopaths and/or psychopaths lack the דעת of the distinction between good and evil?
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256 views

Can a person with a disability that causes them to be incontinent put on tefillin? If so, when?

If someone has a disability wherein they suffer from incontinence from time to time are they able to put on tefillin or not? Is there any consideration for psychological or emotional damage that may ...
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1answer
617 views

Rambam's responsum about treating depression with music

I remember reading a tashubho from the Rambam where he clearly states that music can treat depression and therefore it is ok to listen to if you are depressed. However, I can't seem to find it at the ...
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2answers
349 views

Is it permitted to have an abortion if divorce if imminent?

I know that abortion is permissible if physical health of the mother could be compromised, but what about the emotional health of the mother (or the father for that matter) - if a couple sees divorce ...
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0answers
101 views

At what point can you assume senility?

In my experience it is rare to see a Rosh Yeshiva or other prominent Rabbi declared to be senile and no longer working at full mental capacity. Recently such a proclamation was made about one Rosh ...
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5answers
323 views

Jewish alternative to a Christian self-help book

I had a bad psychological trauma some time ago and I felt the urgent need to review myself. I found that reading self-help books helped me. I tried to learn Mussar books (Mesillat yesharim, Chafetz ...
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1answer
183 views

Is Some One With Alzheimer's Obligated in Mitzvoth?

My grandmother has pretty progressed Alzheimer's disease. I have seen throughout the Oral Tradition the concept of a person with certain medical conditions, such as a deaf mute, or a person who lacks ...
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1answer
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Does tzar baalei chayim include mental anguish?

Does the prohibition on causing tzar baalei chayim (paining animals) preclude acts which only cause an animal mental anguish, such as scaring them, or it is limited to physical pain?
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Is an asexual person obligated in Pru Urvu?

Asexuality is a sexual orientation characterized by the lack of sexual attraction towards people in general. Asexuals may or may not be interested in romantic relationships, but are not physically ...
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1k views

Is it considered Pikuach Nefesh if you break Shomer Negiah to give someone emotional comfort?

I've asked myself this before, but I'm not sure. Say that you see someone depressed, severely depressed and they just need a hug. If they're the same gender, that's all fine and dandy. However, if you'...
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Why is it that there's NO mention in the entire Torah (including Tanach) considering the Brain (Moach) as the source for thought?

Wherever the Torah refers to thinking and feelings of Anger, compassion etc. it always mentions the Heart as the controlling organ (also Kidney) but NEVER the Brain? (Even in the G'mara the Moach is ...
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364 views

Where does Ramban discuss OCD and the mikvah?

I was told that the Ramban writes regarding women who have awful problems using the mikvah because they keep worrying they're not clean enough -- in today's terms, we call that obsessive-compulsive ...
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109 views

Commandments on emotions [duplicate]

I can understand if the Torah commands one to wear tefilin or put on a mezuza. But to command a person not to hate anyone, not to covet anything of anyone, not to bear a grudge, love your fellow as ...
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409 views

How does one improve memory?

Does Judaism provide and tips, tricks or rituals for improving memory or preventing forgetfulness?
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942 views

Treating obsessive compulsive scrupulosity without ignoring genuine conscience

I read a psychological paper that was linked to in a comment here, dealing with how obsessive-compulsive scrupulosity can be treated specifically for Orthodox Jews. The paper gives a helpful and ...