sensations and actions Now let’s try to determine what effect insufficient control has on ideas, sensations and actions.
To do this, we must look at what happens in an individual’s brain to mix up ideas and controlled or uncontrolled ensations.
It seems that even if the insufficiency is only slight, patients feel a vague sense of unease that some of their ideas are escaping them, or cannot be sufficiently defined. They are also often troubled by a feeling of being only half awake, as if they were living in a kind of semidream state which they cannot break out of, a condition which can cause significant anxiety. If the insufficiency is more serious, symptoms will increase proportionally; patients no longer suffer from a ague sense of unease, but rather from a very pronounced sense of confusion, where ideas become all mixed up, and have no logical sequence or direction.
An uncontrolled idea is always less defined, less precise; left to itself, it can repeat itself indefinitely, or become fixed in he brain (in other words it can become an obsession) to the point where willpower has no effect on it whatsoever. In other cases, ideas can undergo veritable distortions; they become exaggerated, are modified or transformed, without the individual being aware of it.
So the major effects of insufficient control are a lack of precision or clarity, and exaggeration or distortion of ideas. As for sensations, we find the same symptoms; they are rarely clear, often bizarre, and tend to be grossly out of proportion.
Actions suffer from the same defects. Patients are undecided, and their actions are rarely thought out or may even be partly unconscious. Since the idea preceding an action is too confused, patients forget what they wanted to do, or are incapable of completing something they started.
All these effects of insufficient control on ideas, sensations and actions are not clearly perceived by patients, who accept them without realizing that they are the basis of the most severe symptoms associated with their illness. Despite their importance, we will only outline these symptomsbriefly here, since we will be encountering them at every step of the
way in the course of this study.