Hello to all Temple Illuminatus friends!
The following links open PDF files for our answers on Quora to questions about depression that are meant to help guide people regarding how to live with depression and be well.
Our approach with these answers is something we first learned about from Deepak Choprah.
Thank you Deepak!
Answered by Gharveyn on Quora...
Internal links near the ends of some answers go to answers about depression posted on Quora.
Additional answers will be formatted as PDF files and linked above here as time allows...
love, the grigs...
The following is the text of the primary file: Why do I get very depressed?
Hi Avinash Sharma!
Why do I get very depressed?
Contrary to what many people might prefer to believe, depression may be less of an illness and more of a natural, much-needed healing process if we are to judge by how many people become depressed.
One theory holds that depression and other so-called ‘mental illnesses’ evolved with humans; their apparent co-evolution with humans suggests they must have a valuable purpose or they would not have survived natural selection.
Those who make their livelihoods treating depression may have a vested interest in denying this, of course.
The reason you get very depressed may be to help you heal in circumstances where your life has been too distracting to allow you to resolve painful traumatic experiences or deep internal conflicts.
Young teens in particular are vulnerable because their lives are tumultuous, full of too many rules, contradictions, and distractions, with too little time for self-exploration, let alone any serious exploration of the worlds beyond their immediate lives.
There is a natural and important need for teenagers to rebel that is unnaturally foiled by lifestyles that are run by parents, teachers, coaches, and even the so-called justice system which must too often intervene when kids get into trouble over their heads.
Depression can be a very frightening experience because in most cultures people with depression are marginalized or even ostracized either by themselves, or by their families and societies, or by both themselves and their social groups.
People are often subliminally taught to shun a depressed person or any other person who may be regarded as mentally ill.
When a person entering depression for the first time realizes they risk becoming one of the people they may have been in the habit of reflexively shunning at the behest of their social conditioning they often voluntarily withdraw rather than face the pain or humiliation of finding themselves shunned by family or friends.
Family and friends are typically socially conditioned to reflexively exhibit shunning behaviors in the presence of anyone deemed depressed or mentally ill.
They can’t help themselves, not even when they are very close to the person they shun. Furthermore, if they fail to shun a person appropriately they open themselves up to criticism from their inner voices or from real people.
The social isolation of a depressed person is at least partly their own responsibility but part of that responsibility belongs to their society's cultural defense mechanisms which condition the members of their society to shun people voicing unusual or introspective thoughts that may criticize their society or culture.
At first, depression can be like a battle-zone between anger and resentment directed at society and friends, and anger and resentment directed against oneself.
Whatever deep-seated conflicts or repressed traumas may need attention must wait until the battles die down.
Unfortunately, too many people never survive the battles within themselves to make it to the island of peace that depression may help them manifest once the anger and blame begin to die away.
Too many people give up and kill themselves before depression can offer them a safe haven for personal discovery, growth, and transformation that enables them to return to their societies and cultures with healthier hearts and minds.
The isolation that depressed people seek is a natural phenomenon that helps the healing processes they must yet endure to feel better about themselves and their prospects in this world.
Think of depression as something like a cast that helps a broken limb to heal; only instead, depression helps a wounded psyche to heal.
Repressed traumas are often the roots of deep-seated internal conflicts that can sometimes immobilize a person with anxiety, doubt, or fear.
Opposing needs can tear into a person's psyche rendering them incapable of planning, making decisions, or following through with things.
Apathy sets in because the depressed person simply cannot keep up with their peers or agree with all of the values their society may require them to uphold.
Frustration sets in that often compels a depressed person to act out dramatically, often doing more damage to their fragile social relationships, or else triggering a response by their community’s authorities that leaves them locked up or over-medicated as a means of reducing the nuisances they become to societies that can ill-afford more appropriate, more expensive therapies.
Consequently, it is very frightening to understand that you are becoming depressed and that you may now risk being labeled a misfit soon to be rapidly marginalized and then largely ignored.
However, being marginalized and ignored can be a liberating experience to learn more about the world independently, without being told what to believe, or how to behave.
So long as a depressed person neither risks their own life nor threatens the lives of other people they may experience a degree of liberty that was impossible in their daily-scheduled routines of schools and jobs.
By getting out to meet new people, especially by volunteering, a depressed person may begin to get a grasp of just how much more there is to life than the narrowness or meaninglessness of the life they used to lead.
Most people tend to acquire a sort of tunnel-vision in which many parts of life are habitually ignored or derided. Their lives become narrowly focused without their ever realizing it until something inside them that is starved for a greater diversity and depth of experience comes in conflict with their settled lives and derails them with depression.
This conflict between the need for adventure and the security of a settled life leads many people to leave their families and jobs behind them for a taste of adventure.
The suicidal modality of depression that seems to have been growing stronger in past decades may really be a way for an individual to overcome their fear of change in order to help them try something radically different.
All the things that frightened a suicidal person into conformity seem less of a barrier; they may finally liberate themselves enough to decide for themselves who they are or how they should live.
If you are experiencing depression for the first time then take advantage of it.
People will blame you for being a malingerer anyways so you may as well make the most of it.
For people with recurring depression, trauma is a more likely motivation for your depression than wanderlust.
Dealing with repressed traumas takes time and professional care to pursuit if you are lucky enough to have adequate resources, but there may be things you can do for yourself that can help.
Get familiar with the stories other people tell about their traumas; if you were a victim of any sort of abuse or bullying that took things too far then you may have PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome) for which depression is a symptom.
By familiarizing yourself with other people's stories you may identify similar things in your own past that still need to be resolved and healed.
This is one of the benefits of group therapies, but group therapy can be found in an informal self-help group or in other social settings, rather than in an expensive clinical setting.
By getting out to meet injured people you may meet people with insight into your own injuries. Sure, a lot of them will be mistaken about what they believe your problems may be, but those kinds of mistakes can be very useful.
It is often the case that people psychologically project their own conditions and circumstances into their perceptions of other people's lives. This is one reason it can be terribly frustrating to talk to other people.
Other people may often seem to be talking more about themselves; they may appear to be only under an illusion that they are talking with you about you.
Worse, they may not seem to 'get you' at all; it may seem as if no one understands you when you get down to brass tacks.
Instead of being angry about this you should congratulate yourself for finding a potential ally in your exploration of yourself and your wounds.
When a person gets you wrong their mistake can initiate a moment of self-recognition, a brief aha! moment that contrasts with what the other person has been saying and by its contrast helps to inform you what your own issue may really be.
These epiphanies can transform your life.
Very often, by getting it wrong for you, another person can help you to see what may really be right for you.
Don’t always assume you know what is right for you because your assumptions were a part of your beliefs that helped you become depressed in the first place.
Take these opportunities to learn more about yourself.
It takes awhile to get the knack of turning these things around to your benefit, but you can even learn from those people who just don't get you at all, and all you have to do, really, is let them talk and then listen to how your heart responds to their words.
Not your mind, your heart.
Your mind is still full of psychological defense mechanisms that are trained to either isolate you from people by having you enter or return to your depression, or which are trained to keep you enmeshed in the fallacies (either your own fallacies or your society’s) which helped you become depressed in the first place.
Your mind will find fault with everything you hear to build your ego and belief systems at your own expense.
Egos and belief systems are good things, everyone needs them, but it was partly your ego and belief systems that initially alienated you so badly that you became depressed.
Your ego and belief systems will continue to lead you down the road to isolation, but it is your road to socialization that you will eventually need to embark upon to get well.
You just need an opportunity to learn to be social on your own terms, for your own purposes, rather than running around in routines that keep you servicing the belief systems and people who may have helped you to become depressed in the first place.
We cannot emphasize enough that depression has value if you can look beyond the pain to learn how your own mind works and then learn to take control of your mind for yourself.
We believe this well enough that in spite of our disabilities and apparent madness we try to follow our own advice as best we can.
However, we must caution you, we are considered by some people to be more than a little mad.
Good luck! and get well on your own terms…
Please read any of the following for more of our opinions regarding suicide, depression, or healing:
our articles are signed with our pen-name, Greg Gourdian…
Gharveyn’s Quora Answers to…
Life is always better than you can imagine, you just need to get out and live a little more…
love, the grigs...
If you are using psych meds please do not stop taking your meds without a doctor’s supervision.
Many people only learn to thrive once they discover which meds work best for them.
If you are someone who does well enough without meds or who has some other good reason not to use meds then please do not encourage other people to stop using their meds; please do not criticize them for seeking help from a doctor in order to try new meds in search of something that will help them.
Meds save lives, even if they can’t help everyone.
We caution people using meds to never abruptly stop taking their meds because the side-effects of quitting may be very dangerous.
Yes, we said that right; for many people on psych meds the side-effects of quitting meds can be dangerous.
Abruptly quitting psych meds may make depression much worse; psychotic episodes may even be triggered.
Only withdraw very slowly under medical supervision.
Let people know what you are doing; have them verify your plan with your doctor if they are afraid for you.
We know medications can work but we also know how often people only want to quit their meds.
Please don’t argue the merits of one life choice over the other, instead allow others the courtesy to make their own choices just as you do, and just as you would want them to allow you to do.
Please support each other and stop hurting each other over the issues of whether or not to medicate or how to medicate safely.
Anyone self-medicating should educate themselves about their meds of choice and also find more help from people they trust.
Gharveyn, by any and all aliases, is not a licensed medical practitioner, nor any other sort of professional care-provider. His opinions, however well-formulated they may sometimes appear to be, are not the products of a formal education; Gharveyn holds no degrees of any sort.
We would like to thank Deepak Choprah for helping us to understand depression in this liberating, empowering manner.
Thank you Deepak…
Live long and prosper…
ciao! fer now...
Great work you shared with us.
Great work you shared with us.
You are quite welcome Margarida,
We hope you are well. We have lost focus here, trying to continue our work wrestles with trying to share it. The newest updates will appear on our own site first, now that we have a page for it. To look for the newest answers please visit gharveyn.com/depression.
We would like to publish a book with these but are uncertain how to proceed. Should we keep the question and answer format or change it to a more traditionally structured format? A lot of work yet to be done.
You are welcome to translate any of work and share it. We do not claim ownership. Our work is a product of channeling, it comes from the entire human race and belongs to everyone equally.
Enjoy! love, the grigs...