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Crazy Wise

Runtime: 82m 12s | Release date: 2017

What can we learn from those who have turned their psychological crisis into a positive transformative experience?

During a quarter-century documenting indigenous cultures, human-rights photographer and filmmaker Phil Borges often saw these cultures identify 'psychotic' symptoms as an indicator of shamanic potential. He was intrigued by how differently psychosis is defined and treated in the West.

Through interviews with renowned mental health professionals including Gabor Mate, MD, Robert Whitaker, and Roshi Joan Halifax, PhD, Phil explores the growing severity of the mental health crisis in America dominated by biomedical psychiatry. He discovers a growing movement of professionals and psychiatric survivors who demand alternative treatments that focus on recovery, nurturing social connections, and finding meaning.

CRAZYWISE follows two young Americans diagnosed with "mental illness". Adam, 27, suffers devastating side effects from medications before embracing meditation in hopes of recovery. Ekhaya, 32, survives childhood molestation and several suicide attempts before spiritual training to become a traditional South African healer gives her suffering meaning and brings a deeper purpose to her life.

CRAZYWISE doesn't aim to over-romanticize indigenous wisdom or completely condemn Western treatment. Not every indigenous person who has a crisis becomes a shaman. And many individuals benefit from Western medications.

However, indigenous peoples' acceptance of non-ordinary states of consciousness, along with rituals and metaphors that form deep connections to nature, to each other, and to ancestors, is something we can learn from.

CRAZYWISE adds a voice to the growing conversation that believes a psychological crisis can be an opportunity for growth and potentially transformational, not a disease with no cure.

Featuring:

Adam Gentry
Ekhaya Esima
Dr. Gabor Mate 
Robert Whitaker
Dr. Roshi Joan Halifax
Phil Borges

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Comments / 37

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Sally Jackson | 2 weeks, 4 days ago
My goodness, what an eye opener. These beautiful souls.... so much pain and suffering for so many people in this world. This movie was beautifully done, it's definitely given me a new insight. Thank you.
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Iris Aguanta | FMTV | 2 weeks, 4 days ago
You're welcome, Sally and thank you so much for your lovely feedback! :) ~ Iris
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Dhana Davis | 3 weeks, 4 days ago
This documentary was worth my time, and I am thankful for this new found prospective on people who have mental encounters.
Great Documentary.
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Ivory David | FMTV | 3 weeks, 4 days ago
I agree with you Dhana, such a lovely film indeed ~ Ivory :)
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Kris Jackson | 1 month ago
Absolutely beautiful and heartwarming film!!
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Joyce Ann Solomon | FMTV | 1 month ago
Indeed it is, Kris :) ~ Joyce
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Claudia P. Sánchez-Castillo | 1 month, 1 week ago
I loved this film and I firmly believe that so called "mental illness" should be seeing from a different perspective in the Western World. Years ago I came across several articles on the topic that focus in seeing mental illness as a crisis for spiritual growth. I was happy for this perspective because at the time a friend´s niece (adolescent) was having a mental crisis and I was able to point out to her this different perspective which helped to deal with the crisis in a different way. Today her niece is a happy person. And I am a happier person too after seeing this film. Thank you!
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Jasmin Habelito | FMTV | 1 month, 1 week ago
Hi Claudia! What an inspiring feedback, so full of energy! Keep it up always, happy day to you! ~ Jasmin ❤️
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Lynnie Pallanes | 1 month, 1 week ago
FABULOUS! Thank You!
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Ivory David | FMTV | 1 month, 1 week ago
You're most welcome Lynnie :) ~ Ivory
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