Sure. That was in reference to your statement: “So, a false belief or idea held with strong conviction despite contrary evidence can be described as delusional for people with no mental illness.”
We human beings assign things to categories all the time. Usually, the assignment is largely arbitrary.
All beliefs and ideas are products of the functioning mind. Some beliefs and ideas reflect healthy functioning; others reflect unhealthy functioning. Delusions fall into the latter category, representing unhealthy functioning by definition.
This does not necessarily mean that the delusional person meets the criteria for a DSM category, or has any organic pathology in the brain. But by definition, unhealthy mental functioning is going on. If someone did that with everything - imagining, for example, that his wife was a hat - we wouldn’t hesitate to call the person mentally ill, even if we couldn’t identify the reason. The very fact that the mind was that dysfunctional would lead us to say that the person was mentally ill, i.e., not mentally well. But there’s no qualitative difference between constant dysfunction and occasional dysfunction; the difference is just a matter of degree. The difference is quantitative but regardless of the quantity, the mind is not functioning properly. That’s mental illness, whether it has an organic basis or not, and whether it meets the criteria for a DSM classification or not.
Not quite so.
Humans have the propensity to name entities to identify, categorize and use names to describe and to elucidate the nature of these entities.
A name is a word or term used for identification. Names can identify a class or category of things, or a single thing, either uniquely, or within a given context.
However, naming an entity is not necessary and sufficient to do that as “the map is not the territory” and we can be deluded as such.
The map–territory relation describes the relationship between an object and a representation of that object, as in the relation between a geographical territory and a map of it. Polish-American scientist and philosopher Alfred Korzybski remarked that “the map is not the territory”, encapsulating his view that an abstraction derived from something, or a reaction to it, is not the thing itself. Korzybski held that many people do confuse maps with territories, that is, confuse models of reality with reality itself.
Bold added by me.
Hence, by naming entities we can confuse models of reality with reality itself.
The problems of naming, knowing and reality was philosophically analyzed in Russell’s seminal essay “On Denoting” which was written in 1905 and is still relevant today.
Russell believes at this point that there are essentially two modes of knowing: knowledge by description and knowledge by (direct) acquaintance. Knowledge by acquaintance is limited to the sense data of the phenomenal world and to one’s own private inner experiences, while knowledge of everything else (other minds, physical objects, and so on) can only be known by way of general descriptions.
Bold added by me.
“Mental illness” as the name of a psychiatric condition is a misnomer as it is not a physical illness per se and as such, it is misleading. It is more accurate to use the term mental disorder with some caveats.
A mental disorder or psychiatric disorder is a psychological term for a mental or behavioral pattern or anomalythat causes distress or disability, and which is not developmentally or socially normative. Mental disorders are generally defined by a combination of how a person feels, acts, thinks or perceives. This may be associated with particular regions or functions of the brain or rest of the nervous system, often in a social context. The recognition and understanding of mental health conditions have changed over time and across cultures and there are still variations in definition, assessment and classification, although standard guideline criteria are widely used. In many cases, there appears to be a continuum between mental health and mental illness, making diagnosis complex.
Bold added by me.
So, where is the line of demarcation between mental “health” and “illness”?
And what is “healthy versus unhealthy functioning” of the mind?
So, the rationale of what I wrote
So, a false belief or idea held with strong conviction despite contrary evidence can be described as delusional for people with no mental illness.
is that even people with no mental “illness” can be deluded with false beliefs or ideas which is as it is in reality.