It is rare to find a book about depression that actually illuminates the causal mechanism and dynamics of depression. It is as if the writer – still suffering under the veil of depression’s shadow – is writing from within the condition. Unfortunately, by the very nature of depression, if you are in it – you can only write about what it is like – you can not write about what it is.
Depression is like a fever or a hallucinatory state. It prevents one from:
- seeing clearly
- accessing the core self
- being proactive
- freedom from disempowering influences.
We use terms like – being in a fog, or the light being dim because depression is very much a condition where the individual’s own energetic self is compromised. In my personal and professional work I would say that I have never encountered a depression that did not have spiritual, emotional and energetic dimensions to it.
Sometimes, the depression is the default mechanism of the system – the way it learned to cope with: invasive influences or external factors, experiences of powerlessness, or a lack of agency in life.
Sometimes, the depression is the way the system is managing to protect the seeds of the soul from attack by a self that has survived in the world by taking on the critical voice of the family and/or the culture. In that setting, not engaging the most alive and real part of the self was a way to keep it safe.
It is a rare practitioner who can, and chooses to actively engage the depression. Instead of considering the client to be suffering under, or with depression – one relates to the depression as a mechansim of intelligence. This mechanism is constantly and chronically determining the “barometric pressure” of the individual’s ecosystem.
Discovering the reasons for this airless, oppressive environment and identifying the mechanisms that sustain it are powerful tools to free up a lifetime of imprisoned potential.
The tangles that hold this self-defeating mechanism of survival in place can be so subtle that finding the deepest threads of the dynamic require an astute practitioner and a highly motivated client.