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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

What Causes Depression?


As someone who suffers from depression, I was intrigued by M. Scott Peck's description of depression in The Road Less Traveled. According to him, depression is sometimes what we experience as we are giving up our "old self."
“Since mentally healthy human beings must grow, and since giving up or loss of the old self is an integral part of the process of mental and spiritual growth, depression is a normal and basically healthy phenomenon. It becomes abnormal or unhealthy only when something interferes with the giving-up process, with the result that the depression is prolonged and cannot be resolved by completion of the process.” (Wisdom from The Road Less Traveled, 2001).
I just read that today, but I can see where it makes sense. Part of growing up means letting go of the old and accepting the new. The times when I have been the most depressed have been the times when I have tried to hold on to the past—but the past cannot be held. As a result of my inability to recapture what is lost, I become depressed.

Fascinating, fascinating thought.