Is Depression Pathological?

In search of comfort and security

In search of comfort and security

Sometimes it just plain hurts. And when it hurts, it hurts all over – the body, the mind, the heart – the complete self is suffering. Our good doctors do their best to help each of us as we suffer in depression. There are countless numbers of prescriptions that we can try, one at a time, in search of the pill that will lift us out of depression. And sometimes, perhaps often enough, these pills will give you or me a chance to raise our heads and try to figure out what in the hell has happened to us. But, that is a lot of work. Most of us don’t want to look into the darkness that has knocked a lot of the life out of us. Given the choice, a pill is good enough regardless of the side effects. It is simpler to say it was a chemical imbalance and leave it at that.

But – strange how there is always a “but” lingering at the edges – nothing is that simple. We, modern humans, tend to simplify things by separating them. Our minds are separated from our bodies. Our soul is unconnected to the body. And our spirit is typically found in bottles and in pills like some “genie.”

“In reality, there is nothing but a living body. That is the fact, and psyche is as much a living body as body is living psyche: it is just the same.” [Jung, Nietzsche’s Zarathustra, vol. 1, p. 396.]

There is no separation. Each of us is a whole being, each aspect of ourselves inter-connected to the other aspects. Depression then is something much more complex than science would have us believe. As a result, we have lost our way when confronted by depression whether it is our personal depression or that of someone who is in our orbit. Our modern world has pathologized depression and has declared it an enemy. It has become a cancer that must be assaulted with all of our skills and pharmacological tools in order to be banished.

But, if Jung is right that there is no separation between body and psyche, then there must be something natural about depression, something that our psyche is needing to address.

2 thoughts on “Is Depression Pathological?

  1. “Trusted, your feelings will lead you to psychological and spiritual states of mystic understanding, calm, and peacefulness. Followed,
    your emotions will lead you to deep understandings, but you cannot have
    a physical self without emotions any more than you can have a day
    without weather.” – Jane Roberts, The Nature of Personal Reality
    Found on page 423 in chapter 21 “Affirmation, Love, Acceptance and Denial”…
    This chapter talks of love and hate, how they are connected or really aspects of the same.
    I can see, though, how manic and depression are similarly related in this dual natured reality. You have to know them both to know either. The middle way gives you a glimpse beyond the duality.


  2. Wise counsel for sure . I’m glad to have met you gentleman . I feel connected and grateful that you are open and willing to discuss these “states” with such clarity . Your thoughts give me a sense that a foundation exists for my personal experience . That there is a path and though we are perhaps at different places we share the journey . Thank you . And thanks for the reading references .


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