Depression Is Not An Illness
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Fom those who have depression. First off, I would like to say . . . Congratulations!!! We are part of a privileged group of people. It may not seem that way when we are in the midst of painful emotion or numb detachment, but as we learn to own these feelings and understand them, our perception of how lucky or unlucky we are makes a dramatic 180 turn.
They are often thought of as illnesses, but in reality depression and suicidal thoughts are not deficiencies or illnesses suffered by an unfortunate group of individuals. They are results of a heightened awareness or ability of perception whereby the more disturbing and distressing aspects of reality are felt within the individual through the emotions. There is no dysfunction or abnormality in this, and to treat depression as an illness that must be cured is to write off a powerful potentiality.
Depression is the cry of the stifled truth. Suicide is its final cry. Pharmaceutical drugs may be, in some cases, a dulling of this cry, but the truth remains concealed, only the individual's natural perception has been altered to the point that this doesn't bother them anymore. Thus, they may be able to continue functioning in their day to day duties within society, but something within them has disconnected. Their intense feeling that something wasn't as it should be was dulled by a sense-numbing substance. It is not the sense of hearing or taste or smell or sight that is numbed, but another sight that as yet science has little understanding of: the sense of what is right and what is wrong.
There is nothing wrong with you
The intense feeling of wrong-ness may not be a deficiency in the individual, rather a deficiency in the environment in which the individual lives. This might be the immediate environment, for example, the relationships that one has with one's family and friends. It might be dissatisfaction in the workplace. It might be the local society, wider society, national or international society that is a source of unconscious dissatisfaction. In all likelihood, it will be all of these things. It could also be that the person has suffered a difficult event, in their childhood or recently, that they haven't been able to get over yet. If there is a specific event that is causing the depression, it would be beneficial to see a Counselor or Therapist to talk this through.
However, some people feel depressed, but they just don't know why. Having the feeling that something isn't right, or that life is dreadful, without a good reason to back it up, does not mean that there is no reason or that we are being irrational and delusional.
It merely means that the heart is perceiving something that the head has not yet been able to identify.
In other words, the intellect has not yet caught up with the feeling. It may feel like a safe option to take substances, in the form of prescription or self-medication (for example alcohol or illegal drugs) in order to hem the emotions in to a size that our intellect can comprehend and thus be in control of.
Signals of Dissonance
The other option is to realise the idea that these emotions are not a sign of any abnormality, but as a signal or message to make us aware that something isn't quite as it should be in the world at large and/or in the way we relate to that world. In this way we can learn how to read our emotions and find the secret wisdom that they hold inside them. By doing so, it will become clear what changes we need to make and what action we need to take in order to improve our lives for good. The emotions that we call depression need not be a looming monster that inspire fear, rather they can become allies in our quest for progress. They are our measure of the outside world and through working with them, our purpose in life becomes revealed.
People who are depressed now will change the world later. Life as we know it, and the societies we have created to live life within, have qualities that are healthy and qualities that are unhealthy. Societies and nations rise and fall over the course of history, and this is in part due to how they developed and grew in response to challenges. Depression is a challenge to society. It is an indicator that something is not right with the way things are functioning. To be able to analyze and conclude on a subject in the way that depression does, it indicates that it is superior to society itself.
To make a comparison:
If a college student wrote a paper, a high school student may think it is fantastic and without error, but a college professor could break down and critique the paper in a whole new light.
Depression indicates a high level of awareness, and a potential to drive society forward. Studies have shown it even indicates a high level of creativity. Those that are depressed should not see it as a curse, but more as a signal that they have a great future ahead of them if they take up the responsibility to make the world a better place, using their innate creativity.