Tulpas: Imaginary Friends with Minds of Their Own

Tulpas: Imaginary Friends with Minds of Their Own

Tulpas are a type of imaginary friend that are said to have achieved full sentience after being conjured through 'thought-form' meditative practice.  Tulpamancers, or human 'hosts', mediate their practice through open-ended how-to guides and discussion forums on the Internet.

There are many reasons why people choose to create a tulpa. Some people do it for companionship, while others do it for personal growth. Here are some of the most common reasons:

    Companionship: Tulpas can provide companionship and support, especially for people who are lonely or isolated. They can also be a source of entertainment and fun.
    Personal growth: Tulpas can help people to learn more about themselves and their own abilities. They can also help people to develop their creativity and imagination.
    Spiritual exploration: Some people believe that tulpas can help them to connect with their spiritual side or to explore different aspects of their personality.
    Research: Some people create tulpas for research purposes. They are interested in studying the nature of consciousness and the relationship between the mind and the body.

The process of creating a tulpa will vary from person to person. However, there are some general steps that many tulpamancers follow:

    Decide on your tulpa's form. What will they look like? What will their personality be like? The more detail you can put into this step, the easier it will be to create a strong mental image of your tulpa.
    Start talking to your tulpa. Even if you don't feel like they're there yet, it's important to start talking to them as if they are. This will help to solidify their existence in your mind.
    Spend time with your tulpa. The more time you spend with your tulpa, the stronger they will become. You can do this by talking to them, imagining them with you, and even roleplaying with them.
    Be patient. Creating a tulpa takes time and effort. Don't get discouraged if you don't see results immediately. Just keep at it, and eventually, your tulpa will become a real and independent being.
    Be consistent. The more consistent you are with your tulpamancy practice, the faster your tulpa will develop. Try to talk to your tulpa and spend time with them for at least a few hours each day.
    Be positive. It's important to believe that you can create a tulpa. If you have doubts, your tulpa will pick up on them and it will be harder to create them.

There is no scientific consensus on the existence of tulpas, and they are not recognized as a mental disorder by the American Psychiatric Association. However, some psychiatrists have expressed concern that tulpamancy could be a sign of underlying mental health issues, such as schizophrenia or dissociative identity disorder.

In a study published in the journal Research in the Psychological Sciences  (Isle, 2017), researchers found that tulpamancers were more likely to report symptoms of anxiety and depression than people who did not have tulpas. However, the researchers also found that tulpamancy was not associated with any other mental health problems, such as psychosis or personality disorders.

The study's findings suggest that tulpamancy may be a harmless way for some people to cope with anxiety and depression. However, it is important to note that tulpamancy is not a recognized mental disorder, and it is not clear whether it is safe for everyone. 

Here are some of the potential risks of tulpamancy:

    Excessive time commitment: Tulpamancy can be a very time-consuming hobby. If you are not careful, it can take over your life.
    Social isolation: Tulpamancers often spend a lot of time talking to their tulpas, and they may neglect their real-life relationships.
    Mental health problems: As mentioned above, tulpamancy has been linked to anxiety and depression. In rare cases, it may even lead to the development of more serious mental health problems.

If you are considering creating a tulpa, it is important to weigh the risks and benefits carefully. Tulpamancy can be a rewarding experience, but it is not for everyone.

Research in Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, 2017, Vol. 5, No. 2, 36-44

© 2023 Guiomar Goransson

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