Entries in the 'Depression' Category

How Balanced Relations Between Genders Solves Depression: Women’s Depression And The Meaning Of Life (KabNet)

KabNet published my new article: “How Balanced Relations between Genders Solves Depression: Women’s Depression and the Meaning of Life

Depression is a global epidemic. Currently, over 300 million people around the world suffer from depression, and women are diagnosed nearly twice as much as men.

Why is there such a striking gender gap in the numbers of depressed people in the world?

Dissatisfaction in women compared to men has a deep spiritual root. It is embedded in the feminine nature.

Is There Anything That Could Completely Fulfill a Woman?

According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, there is.

Spiritual attainment.

Spirituality is attained when the woman—the female force—uses her deep desire to propel the man—the male force —to reach a higher purpose in life. The complementarity of the opposite male and female forces enables their mutual attainment of harmony and fulfillment.

The female ability to elevate the world to a higher state stands at humanity’s foundation. Just as the old adage says, “The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world.” Nature is designed such that the female ability determines how to correctly adjust and direct the world, i.e., how to find the appropriate cooperation between male and female forces so that both function together supportively and harmoniously.

Women’s sense of longing is evidently far greater than men’s. A man can be more easily satisfied by earthly fulfillments, for instance, by engaging in some activity together with his friends.

A woman desires more depth. She wants warmth and love. She longs for more sympathy and support. Her way of fulfilling herself is a lot more complicated than how men fulfill themselves.

Everything begins and ends with a woman. She feels herself as the center of reality, the queen of the world. Her sense of uniqueness is a natural feeling that she rightfully embodies.

“When we attract this force, it performs what is called a “correction” upon our self-centered, egoistic desires, which naturally oppose the tendency to unite, the needed “click” for us all to merge as one and experience a higher level of reality.”

Why It Is Nearly Impossible for Women to Truly Bond

According to the wisdom of Kabbalah, it is nearly impossible for women to truly bond. Their yearning for a greater sense of wholeness can only emerge when opposite forces support one another in a delicate balance.

Therefore, male and female forces need very precise fine-tuning so that an intermediary force emerges between them: the force of love, bestowal, and connection. The study of Kabbalah deals primarily with how to attract this force in order to unite people, and discover an eternal and whole reality in such connection. When we attract this force, it performs what is called a “correction” upon our self-centered, egoistic desires, which naturally oppose the tendency to unite, the needed “click” for us all to merge as one and experience a higher level of reality.

It is written that “man and woman, the Divine presence is between them.” The correct combination and functionality of male and female forces is that:

1. the female force balances the male force by activating the male force toward connection, and

2. the male force balances the female force by providing it with strength, understanding and support for the female to rise above its nature.

This is the mutual complementarity that allows male and female forces to function harmoniously.

What Force Is the First to Activate the Other: The Male or the Female?

It is the female. The need and request for unification always emerges from the female. The desire for a connection in the depth of the desire, the soul, is at the basis of every woman’s dissatisfaction and depression.

Even though men think they make progress and breakthroughs due to their own abilities, in fact, all of the male’s activities are for the female, i.e., in order to become significant in their eyes. It is the way we are naturally built.

Thanks to the differences between genders, over which they need to connect into a single whole, perfection becomes possible. There is nothing in each of them alone that the other doesn’t complement, since in spirituality, their wholeness can only exist in mutual complementarity according to the principle, “love will cover all transgressions.”

In other words, instead of fighting our differences and focusing on the differences between men and women, we need to find our common ground of support and understanding where we can together discover a much greater fulfillment and purpose in life—the revelation of how nature functions in more unified levels—and start resembling our relationships to nature’s own form of complete unification.

The sensation of attaining perfect unity will cure depression, as we will work directly with the key that unlocks our negative sensations, opening them to a fulfillment of a completely new kind: balance with nature’s unified form.
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New Life #91 – Understanding Depression, Part 2

New Life #91 – Understanding Depression, Part 2
Dr. Michael Laitman in conversation with Oren Levi and Nitzah Mazoz

Summary

Depression can be a turning point in our lives. It presents us with an opportunity to find our true selves and can lead us upward toward a higher experience of life. If we build the right environment for ourselves, this environment can influence us and make it possible for us to program a better tomorrow. The right environment is one focused on giving. We need to train workers and learn how to exercise our imaginations. We can change our experience of life by changing our attitude.
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From KabTV’s “New Life #91 – Understanding Depression, Part 2,” 10/25/12

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New Life #90 – Understanding Depression, Part 1

New Life #90 – Understanding Depression, Part 1
Dr. Michael Laitman in conversation with Oren Levi and Nitzah Mazoz

Summary

Depression is like a virus that stems from existential questions we cannot seem to answer. Physical pain can result from mental pain and depression. We can’t find a solution to the growing feeling of emptiness inside, and old ways of coping through sports, entertainment, and hobbies are no longer effective. We feel cornered because we are closed inside of ourselves. There is a single remedy for depression, a new human program based on the principle “And you shall love your friend as yourself.” In other words, we need to exit our bodies and feel our desires and thoughts inside others. We can learn how to exit depression by considering what is good for others instead of what is good for myself. This can be achieved via discussion workshops in groups.
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From KavTV’s “New Life #90 – Understanding Depression, Part 1,” 10/25/12

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Depression Is Getting Younger

laitman_564In the News (Independent): “A one-year-old boy was prescribed antidepressants by the NHS in Scotland, as prescriptions for the drugs soared across the UK. …

“The figures also showed the most common age group for antidepressants to be prescribed was for those aged between 14 and 17, and that girls were more likely to be given the medication than boys. …

“Though NHS guidelines state that under 18s should not be prescribed antidepressants, over 100,000 prescriptions a year are given to teenagers, according to the Daily Telegraph.”

My Comment: Egoism is growing and demands solutions; there are no answers. The question of the meaning of life is consciously or unconsciously felt all the time on the background of what is happening, but other than suppressing, pushing the issue before us…far away.
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Depression—An Illness Of Lack Of Meaning In Life

Dr. Michael LaitmanComment: One of our listeners wrote that his child has no interest in life and says that he wants to die.

Answer: An aspiration for something else that is beyond this life is already appearing in the world and is especially apparent among children. Previously there was never such a problem as childhood depression. But today it is appearing at a very young age.

Depression among adults didn’t exist 100 years ago either. It appeared as minor sadness or melancholy because of boredom, especially among the nobility. But it has manifested intensively only in our time. And this disease is a lack of meaning in life, and many people suffer from it.

However, this is also progress since nature intentionally arouses such sensations in us.

Question: How long does it take a person to reach a state in which he can look at his body as if it were a foreign object, as if it were a little puppy by his side?

Answer: This is independent of time, since the wisdom of Kabbalah has become part of our lives in the 20th century, people are continuously developing internally. So it is impossible to say now how long it will take every individual to reach that state.  

A person who reaches it now may have tried to attain it for years, while it may take someone who comes five or ten years from now only a couple of months. People are born today with a different potential of spiritual power, and in a couple of months, they perceive what took us years.
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From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 9/20/15

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The Disappearance Of The King Of Egypt

Dr. Michael LaitmanBaal HaSulam, Shamati 159, “And It Came To Pass In The Course Of Those Many Days:” This is the meaning of “the king of Egypt died,” that all the dominations of the king of Egypt, which he was providing for and nourishing, had died.

The king of Egypt died inside us and  the control of the ego upon us disappeared. Therefore, we were not able to work anymore. We were always working in order to receive and then to bestow in order to receive.  And suddenly there is no one to work for since the desire to receive disappeared. And if there is no desire, then there is nothing to do, no desire to bestow or receive. The ego disappears, we come to despair and don’t know where to go.

We don’t have a reason to move; we feel disconnected from life, which suddenly becomes in vain. But, clearly this is exactly the passage to the next degree. If at this moment we are powerless, it precisely indicates our dependency on the force of desire and how it held us in its complete control.

“The king of Egypt died,” that is, our ego stopped being important to us. We no longer try to fulfill it as before, nor do we feel that there is any vitality in this fulfillment.

In ordinary life it is clear to us that if I we are fed up with a game, it is not as important as before, that is, that the king of Egypt, the ego, that was part of the game and fulfilled us, does not fulfill us anymore. Therefore, we look for another game, changing our place of work or lifestyle.

But, in spiritual work we don’t know how to change a problem. In regular life we have TV, the Internet, advertisements, and we constantly choose where else we can find enjoyment and what else can be experienced. We enter the supermarket and see endless varieties of wine, cheese, and meat on the shelves. If you don’t want one thing, take another one. This confuses people and creates an illusion of a variety of pleasures, and this calms people by showing them that there is always something to fulfill them. Nevertheless, we see that with all the sufferings, a large percentage of people suffer from depression, complete despair, and drug use.

Because we progress toward mutual spiritual work, today in our world people do not understand where the king of Egypt disappeared to. Before he provided aspiration for work from which we received different fulfillments. But today, everything has disappeared and this is a problem in our lives.

We understand that we cannot change jobs anymore; there is no place to where we can escape, and we will need to concentrate on finding a new king. Meaning, we must receive the control of the force to bestow without any reward, to receive force from above and perform actions that are directed upward and toward people outside of us.

We only need to request to disconnect from any self-benefit, from our future, from fulfillment, and from good or bad feelings within us.

And afterward, when they walked in the desert and came to a state of Katnut, (smallness), they craved the servitude that they had had prior to the death of the king of Egypt.

When man had previously disconnected from working for his ego and had risen above it, he again is brought back to the feeling of the desires, intentions, pleasures, and fulfillments he had in the past! This is done so that above his feeling of disconnection, he will build the same state on a spiritual level.
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From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 4/18/14, Shamati #159

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The Epidemic Of Loneliness

Dr. Michael Laitman

In the News (Time): “Loneliness kills. That’s the conclusion of a new study by Brigham Young University researchers who say they are sounding the alarm on what could be the next big public-health issue, on par with obesity and substance abuse.

“The subjective feeling of loneliness increases risk of death by 26%, according to the new study in the journal Perspectives on Psychological Science. Social isolation — or lacking social connection — and living alone were found to be even more devastating to a person’s health than feeling lonely, respectively increasing mortality risk by 29% and 32%.

“The researchers emphasized the difference between the subjective, self-reported feeling of loneliness and the objective state of being socially isolated. Both are potentially damaging, the study found. People who say they are alone but feel happy are at increased risk of death, as are those who have many social connections but say they are lonely. People who are both objectively isolated and subjectively lonely may be at the greatest risk of death, says Julianne Holt-Lunstad, an author of the study, though she notes that more data would be needed to know with certainty.”

My Comment: This problem will be manifested increasingly as the world becomes more tied with external connections, but people become more and more lonely. There is a constant discrepancy between our negative and positive connections in the world, and the magnitude of this discrepancy brings about all the suffering in the world.
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Binge-Watching TV Shows Is Linked To Depression

Dr. Michael LaitmanIn the News (Newsweek): “At the University of Texas at Austin, researchers surveyed hundreds of millennials to find out what psychological factors lead people to watch three or more TV episodes at a time. What they found was troubling—people who binge-watch are more likely to be depressed and lonely, two factors that are also in harmful binge behaviors such as eating and drinking.

“The authors, who concede that they too binge-watch, were correct: they discovered a correlation between binge-watching and loneliness, depression, and having self-regulation deficiency, which is an inability to control compulsions.

“For people who feel lonely or depressed, the authors suggest, binge-watching allows them to escape from negative feelings. And the more episodes someone watches, the longer that person can escape. Experts call this an avoidance coping strategy.

“Original programming on streaming sites seems made for binge-watching. Netflix has been dropping an entire season’s worth of new episodes at once since the American premiere of Lilyhammer in 2012; House of Cards, Orange Is the New Black and Netflix version of Arrested Development all premiered the following year.

“The University of Texas researchers are joining a growing field of academia taking on entertainment. One study from last June suggested that binge-watching increases a viewer’s risk of early death. In September, a communication research expert told the Huffington Post that it’s hard to break from a marathon viewing because humans are hardwired to watch for changes in environments, including images on a computer screen.”

My Comment: In the near future,when people have more free time, this will be the only accepted pastime until suffering raises a person from the couch and throws him into the arms of others!

By disseminating the method of integral connection, we will prepare the environment, making it possible for all the people who spend time sitting on the couch to enter into this environment.
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Are Mass Protests An Escape From Depression?

Dr. Michael LaitmanQuestion: Today society doesn’t feel sympathy for people in power. For the past two or three years, many nations have gone through similar processes of social resentment and anger. What can you recommend in connection to this widespread and increasing phenomenon?

Answer: I have met with very wealthy people who say: “If I don’t have profits, what will I share?” I very much wanted to answer them: “Don’t distribute anything! They can have everything without you.”

I certainly didn’t answer them this way, but their position is understandable. In the past, they created the workplaces, distributed bonuses and awards, and through the media, they have broadcast rumors that they have used their wealth to care for others.

Today the rich have nothing to share, even if they wanted to. People suddenly feel empty inside instead of feeling the previous natural drives of “I want this, and this, and this!” Now, it is not possible to build a new desire within them; what would fulfill them if there is no desire, no deficiency?

Do you suppose that an artist or composer entering a supermarket can fulfill himself one-hundred percent? No! He must buy products to sustain and fortify his body, but the main thing for him is to fulfill his inner need. Such a situation today is typical of regular people. Why? It is because nature has stopped arousing us with desires that we are used to receiving through some channel and we have suddenly found ourselves with emptiness.

Mass protests have become a regular phenomenon today. Why do these people go out to the streets? They are looking for fulfillment! They don’t care who will rule because they think that through it they will find new fulfillment, and seize some source and purpose of life. But what is to be done? It won’t happen. They are ready to shut their eyes, to sink into a swoon from using drugs, just to not feel the emptiness. Half of humanity has sunken into depression. We must understand that they have no other possibility.

So leaders have lost their status among the masses. If in the past the masses yearned for wealth, control, and respect, today this doesn’t exist. They don’t see people whom they should worship among their leaders. Today the leaders are worse than the simple people, and they also despise them, asking why they should waste their lives on them?

The younger generation, who are 15-30 years old today, perceive them exactly like that. Only older people remain in this old paradigm. There is no way out for influential people other than to give people Integral Education. Only in this way will they be ready to maintain their influence and even rise to a new qualitative level in the eyes of society.
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From KabTV’s “A New Life” 2/10/14

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Rising Above The Gaping Emptiness

Dr. Michael LaitmanDepression is one of the problems of modern humanity; it appeared at the turn of the 17th – 18th century in forms characteristic of the aristocracy of the day. People that led idle lives, didn’t know what to do with themselves, with what to occupy themselves. Based on this, they secretly began to raise the question about the meaning of life; on one hand, everything seemed to be there, and on the other hand, there was nothing.

To distract people from these thoughts and dampen the growing emptiness, society began to encourage romance, sex, and small wars. Then the development of various technologies began, and sports, travel, and the pursuit of fashion became popular. Everything was focused on keeping a person busy, giving him a sense of fulfillment instead of focusing on the true answer to the question “Why am I here?”

In parallel, print media, radio and television, and soon the Internet were developed, which further filled leisure time and all of a person’s resources. The Internet is filled with a vast variety of information that plugs the emptiness that arises within us.

But despite this, no matter in what a man is engaged, there is a greater and greater sense of inner awareness of worthlessness, insignificance, and the limits of his existence. The question of the meaning of life subconsciously gnaws at any person, be they more or less educated. This wormhole is inside of him, and he needs to do something with it.

This longing by the masses has caused a significant level of depression, and in order to address this, the masses are offered sedatives and other recreational drugs. Under the banner of struggling for a healthy humanity, government health agencies prohibit smoking, but instead they are slowly killing people with recreational drugs.

The by-product of ignoring the truth and not focusing on finding the right answer has led to everything being permitted. Humanity isn’t limited in any type of behavior, meaning sexually or drug related. Fulfill yourself with anything, just so the depression isn’t felt. This approach has led to the masses being willing to kill everyone and everything, including oneself, since he is no longer afraid of anything.

Searching for the meaning of life is most difficult because in order to find it a person must rise above oneself. A person can’t rise above oneself except in the case, by the will of fate he finds the wisdom of Kabbalah. Although it’s also a long path, at least one sees some kind of a perspective, not through feelings but through logic.

It turns out that depression is a problem for all humankind. The sooner humanity will move forward under the influence of the Internet and the overall development, more and more people will feel the insignificance of life, its limitations, and short term.

Subconsciously we feel that much greater potential is inherent in our lives than the one in existence now. For a person wasn’t created to live like an animal, meaning to be engaged in oneself, one’s offspring, and the arrangement of one’s own life to the grave. A person has some internal embryo that requires its own self-actualization and realization. On one hand, there is this embryo in each person, and on the other hand, this embryo can be suppressed.

Today, the most important industry of the world is the entertainment industry, which takes huge amounts of money, resources, etc. Even this industry has already been experiencing a setback and we are no longer satisfied by Hollywood and other mass entertainment venues.

A person has become impatient in the search for the meaning of life. A person cannot watch an online video clip that lasts more than five minutes. A year later, it will be shortened by a minute, and then by another minute. A question gnaws at him “Will I find something here? If not, then I won’t even want to watch.” After all, viewing long clips only increases the void, so it’s better not to watch them.

The problem is when a person opens a book or becomes engaged in some business, he is afraid to stop such activity due to an even greater disclosure of emptiness, insignificance, worthlessness, and lack of response to this gnawing question; therefore, he tries to preempt it. Therefore, people decrease their Internet discussions and talks over the mobile phone, limiting them to short phrases like ‘See you tomorrow! Later!” as if they want to leave something for the future. And what do they have tomorrow? The same emptiness that is today, but it seems better to break in the middle of a conversation, as though there was something to talk about afterward.

A person has to feel that there is a future! And there is no future! Somehow today we still can see it. Perhaps it looks ghostly and foggy, but we can still lie to ourselves about it. But day after day this feeling passes by, and in the hands of humanity, there is nothing that can plug this void.

No matter what, this emptiness remains and becomes more gaping, black, and grim. So, the younger generation quietly parts with this life, since it is much easier to forget everything while under the influence of drugs and to leave quietly rather than carrying this darkness internally.

We are faced with a huge problem that we lack the desire and ability to solve. Only Kabbalah gives an answer to this problem. However, until people don’t become completely disappointed, they won’t hear us out.  We must be ready to present them with the Kabbalistic wisdom in a way they can understand. It should become clear that only we have the answer, and the answer is only to reach the infinite, eternal, perfect existence, which is not concentrated in our body, but among us, in the sense of our own “I.”

My body, the animal substance, dies after some time; however, the human being in me is forever. So I need to separate the “I” from what I now consider myself, pull it out, isolate it from my body, and start raising, nurturing, and shaping it. This is the human being in me that I must realize.

Question: If a person is on this path, will his depression fade?

Answer: Yes, but other problems will certainly start to appear because a person has to develop himself. However, they all will end up breaking away from their animal. After rising above the body, the person will remain there for eternity and in perfection. The wisdom of Kabbalah provides a real answer that is realized by ourselves in our world and inside us. Here we do not depend on anyone and no one can restrict us! This is our freewill. To realize this we don’t need any special tools; everything is in our hands.
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From KabTV’s “Short Stories” 10/23/14

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