Entries in the 'Depression' Category

“A Systemic Problem Of Depression Requires A Systemic Solution” (Medium)

Medium published my new article “A Systemic Problem of Depression Requires a Systemic Solution

Depression has been a growing problem throughout the industrialized world for several decades, but it has skyrocketed since the onset of the pandemic. Death rates from substance abuse, suicide, and gun violence have skyrocketed, anxiety has become a major problem, and professional help is either too expensive or unavailable for lack of professional staff nearby, or both. In such a state, a systemic, concerted effort is required. By using mass media to broadcast both calming messages and advice to people in need, we can save many lives and improve the lives of countless others.

All over the world, people are asking critical questions about the purpose of their lives. Their inability to answer these questions leaves them with a sense of purposelessness, and one who has no purpose in life feels that life itself is purposeless. This is the cause behind the growing escapism expressed in myriad ways, from extreme sports through religious fundamentalism to drug abuse and suicide.

For humans, eating, drinking, sleeping and mating do not count as living. Living means living out the reason we are put here on this planet. If we do not know why we were put here, we do not feel that we are alive or that our lives have value, and this can lead to horrendous consequences.

If only a few people feel this way, you can refer them to professionals who can help ease their pain until they find their purpose in life. But when so many people suffer from these distresses, it overwhelms the system and you need a new approach. Instead of stuffing our brains with messages that send us shopping and emptying our pockets and, more importantly, our hearts, the media, in all its forms, must spread messages that help resolve our situation.

It is not impossible; it is a question of the government’s resolve, and the media’s understanding that the situation will soon get out of hand. In a state of emergency, we must act accordingly, and we are certainly approaching one.

There are many ways the media can alleviate the growing misery of people, but the most effective one among them is to reverse its tendency to pitch people against each other and encourage them to reach out to each other. Countless studies have shown that solidarity and cohesion in society help mitigate or even solve most social, economic, and medical problems. Therefore, if the media offers a “collective treatment” for everyone by broadcasting content that encourages people to come closer, they will resolve most existing problems.

It is said, “A sorrow shared is a sorrow halved.” This is very true. Sharing and connecting with others is a sure way to unite our hearts and heal our ills. This is why the more we work on our solidarity, the sooner we will resolve our social and emotional challenges.

Children Must Play Together

503.02Comment: More and more adolescents suffer from depression, hyperactivity, and sleeping problems these days, which means that more and more children are less happy.

According to psychologists, this is because children do not have the opportunity to play anymore, it is not about computer games, but about games that we used to play in the past like hide and seek and tag, games that help kids develop important skills.

My Response: These games develop communication between children, which is a crucial phase in their development and growth. It happens through games because the whole world is a game. We always play, but different games. But when a person is at home and does not communicate with others, he will grow up to be an ugly person in the human sense. He will not be able to communicate with people.

Children will grow up to be miserable because they have no natural, normal communication with their peers. We will not be able to do anything about this because it is simply impossible to replace communication with anything else.
From KabTV’s “News with Dr. Michael Laitman” 11/18/21

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“Unleash The Granny Power” (Linkedin)

My new article on Linkedin “Unleash the Granny Power

A story by Rachel Nuwer published on BBC Future describes a unique, successful, and inexpensive way to tackle depression in Zimbabwe. With only twelve psychiatrists for a population of sixteen million, even the few who can afford treatment are rarely able to find a therapist within a reasonable distance.

Therefore, instead of professionals, psychiatrist Dixon Chibanda, director of the African Mental Health Research Initiative, came up with a revolutionary idea that became known as the “Friendship Bench.” Instead of looking in vain for professional help, Chibanda mused, Zimbabweans would consult with people who have warm hearts, lots of free time, a passion for heart-to-heart talks and the ability to give good advice. These people would receive some training and, thanks to their warmth and patience, Chibanda hoped, would be able to help people in distress.

Brainstorming where to find such people, Chibanda arrived at an unlikely solution: grandmothers. Chibanda and his team trained more than 400 grandmothers in talk therapy, which they now offer for free in more than 70 communities in Zimbabwe.

The idea proved to be a resounding success. “In 2017 alone,” Nuwer reports, “Friendship Bench, as the programme is called, helped over 30,000 people. The method has been empirically vetted and have [sic] been expanded to countries beyond, including the US.”

In 2016, Chibanda, in collaboration with colleagues from Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom, published the results of a randomized control trial of the program’s effectiveness in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The researchers found that after six months, the group that had seen the grandmothers had significantly fewer symptoms of depression than the group that underwent conventional treatment.

Clearly, love can go a long way in helping people. Empathy, this is all we need. More than any medicine, it heals us from within. Connecting hearts connects us to the power that sustains our world, the creative force of love. Without this power of connection, no two elements in reality would be able to connect, and life would have been impossible.

When we connect in love, we create similarity between us and the force that creates and sustains life. Just as a string on a guitar vibrates when its note is played on another string when the frequency is similar, when we create a similar feeling to the feeling that creates life—the feeling of empathy and love—we “switch on” this feeling within us.

We experience this feeling as if it came from the person next to us, but it did not. In fact, it came because the warm connection between the two of you enabled you to feel the warmth that exists around you. As long as you have not made that connection, it is as if you do not have a sensor to perceive it. But once you establish it with another person, you can feel it.

This is why loving others is so important. It is not only important to others, but even more important to the loving person. People with love in their heart are connected to the power of love and creation that exists in all of reality. No feeling is more empowering. A person who is connected to it will never feel depressed, lost, or hopeless.

“What Is Depression?” (Quora)

Dr. Michael LaitmanMichael Laitman, On Quora: What is depression?

Depression is an outcome of unsatisfied desires.

We are composed of several desires. If these desires are fulfilled, we feel happy. If they are partially fulfilled, we feel partial dissatisfaction, a state that we live in, and which we have become accustomed to.

We try to neutralize such dissatisfaction in a variety of ways, whether by means of medicines and drugs through to all kinds of entertainments and goals in our lives, and we thus manage to stay somewhat afloat.

There are certain states of depression where we feel a deep, dark and gaping emptiness within, feeling no fulfillment in the present moment, and also see no light at the end of the tunnel in the future either, which is indeed very difficult.

We usually live with hope for the future. We plan various goals for ourselves in order to fulfill our spectrum of desires. We are usually occupied with thoughts about food, sex, family, recreation, making money, gaining respect in society, accumulating knowledge, and some people even wish to acquire particular positions of fame or power. We have developed a smorgasbord of ways in which we fulfill such desires, and they act as distractions from deeper existential questions, letting us live our lives on a certain surface level. However, when they become swallowed by darkness, we become swamped in depression, and we are then even ready to die. There is a kabbalistic saying about such a state: “My death is better than my life.”

The moment we start feeling such depressed states, we then ask ourselves the existential questions that we had previously been able to successfully cover up. At the end of the day, depression is a feeling that leads us to search outside of our usual frameworks to find an answer to questions about life’s meaning and purpose, and we need to experience a certain level of depression in order to soul search.

If we find meaning and purpose in serving our desires for food, sex, family, recreation, money, honor, control and knowledge, i.e. if we are able to enjoy ourselves by either fulfilling these desires directly or by imagining their future fulfillment, then life’s deeper existential questions remain buried beneath this pleasure pursuit. In other words, we find meaning in life’s animate level of existence. If, however, we find no satisfaction through serving such desires, we then experience depression, which is ultimately a sensation that should lead us to actively search for the meaning and purpose of life.

We should understand that our world is a mere springboard from which we need to leap to a higher dimension. We can discover the higher dimension of existence while we are alive in this same world, in our same body.

The process of development through which nature guides us is in order for us to ultimately seek and attain the meaning of life. States of depression appear more frequently and with more intensity the closer we come to transitioning between the discovery of meaninglessness in pursuing the fulfillment of corporeal desires, and the search for higher meaning. In other words, the growing dissatisfaction we feel in pursuing our corporeal desires’ fulfillment is already an expression of our deeper existential questions.

In the wisdom of Kabbalah—a method that was created specifically in order to answer the questions about our life’s meaning and purpose by providing a method for attaining a higher dimension, perception and fulfillment—calls our corporeal desires beyond the fulfillment of mere necessities a “help against.” It is because the emptiness that we either currently or eventually discover in these desires pushes us to seek life’s true meaning and purpose beyond our animate existence.

Based on a Kabbalah lesson with Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman on October 2, 2016. Written/edited by students of Kabbalist Dr. Michael Laitman.
Photo by Warren Wong on Unsplash.

Depression—A Result Of An Internal Request

546.02We all know that education is a big problem. I see how children are brought up in schools. Therefore, children’s depression will not go away! We just need to answer the children’s request.

Depression is a consequence of their inner request. Moreover, this is a huge social problem because it manifests itself in more than one child. We observe this in absolutely all children from different countries of the world.

There is such a thing as depression in animals, especially in pets that live near their owners. I am sure that both wild animals and plants have it.

That is, depression is a feeling of lack of the force of life, which is beginning to be felt in our world. It depends on the person because he must rise to another level so that through him the spiritual upper force, the force of life, passes into our world. And then the problem with the environment, with our health, with social relations, with everything, will disappear.

We lack vitality. We see that everything is exhausted, aging, disappearing, and losing its value, meaning.

We try our best to inspire ourselves with all sorts of fashions, aspirations, to keep each other playing with the help of technology. But if you look at the truth, we need a completely different level of existence, some other level, an understanding of what we are for, where we are going. This is the challenge all of humanity is facing, especially now.

And children in this case should play a very important useful role. After all, we will not get rid of them, this is our problem, and this is our pain. We can deal with ourselves somehow, and when a child feels bad, there’s nothing you can do about it.

So when I look at my children and especially my grandchildren, I start to feel these requests. They exist literally in the baby. It shows that even at such a young age, he is internally missing something in his life. It’s hard to explain. I just see it with my inner vision, from the depth of the nature that I have discovered for myself, but it exists. We’re not getting away from this.
From KabTV’s “Close-up. Depression in Children” 8/24/09

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Why Does Childhood Depression Occur?

543.02Comment: In the last 15 to 20 years childhood depression has become very common. Doctors do not know what to do about it. They cannot find the reason. There can be some reasonable explanations for adult depression.

My Response: It is not just that. We can restrain adult depression. You can force a person to be lower, more limited. But we need to develop our children.

A person who is depressed is given sedatives, tranquilizers, even some drugs just to “put him to sleep.” How can we do this to children? By doing this, we detach them from their natural growth. The manifestation of depression in children is opposite to the tendency that they must develop, overcome, and grow. We encounter a phenomenon here that we cannot conquer.

Question: The fact is that patients are five to six years old children. Why is a six-year-old child depressed and finds that nothing pleases him?

Answer: The question of the meaning of life! Many great Kabbalists wrote about this and in particular Rav Kook and Baal HaSulam.

As long as I can remember, as a child, I had this question. Not explicitly, but it was: “Why? What for? What is all this about?” This question did not allow me to live, did not allow me to rejoice. It was necessary to find an excuse to have fun: to go on a spree, to get carried away with something in order to escape this question. And it was all during childhood.

But let us assume that the soul has no age. Then it will be easier for us. Let’s not look at the young generation as being children.

A soul is a soul. We received it from our past incarnation in which we lived to our old age. And today, in our brand-new young body lives an old soul that has lived on this earth for many generations and has been through a lot.

The fact is that you evaluate a child by its small body, but you should look at its soul. It is already old, wise, and understands that all this is pointless. It has already lived for so long that you cannot confuse it. What will you do with it?

So through depression it gives you its external emptiness and lack of fulfillment. So what if it manifests itself in a small child? And if it was in its thirties, in its forties, is it different?

Depression does not come from life. Absolutely not! We see that there is a lot of depression and suicides among people who have everything in life.

Comment: Usually they say about such people: “They get mad from fat” [unsatisfied from prosperity.]

Answer: No, not from fat. A person simply needs to know what he lives for. And when he has everything and his daily bread is not in question, he really does not see what to live for.

As long as you are forced to take care of your body, you have no opportunity to free yourself for other matters. And as soon as you provide it with everything you need, the question of the meaning of life immediately arises.

This question also appears in children. Why not? I don’t see much difference. The fact that it occurs in children suggests that, after many reincarnations in this world, our souls have come to a state where they actually need the answer to: “Why do we exist?”

Question: You want to say that we incorrectly approach a person from the very beginning by focusing on him as the biological body?

Answer: Of course! After all, this is not a person at all but his animal body. An animal! And how does it differ from other animals?

But its inner part, our “I,” has nothing to do with this body. It goes through many different improvements, dipping into the body, coming out of it, accompanying it. As a result, these metamorphoses lead it to such a development, when—that’s it! We already live in a generation in which we must necessarily answer the question: “What for?”
From KabTV’s “Close-up. Depression in Children” 8/24/09

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Perfection Of The World Is Perfection Of A Person

947The perfection of the world depends on the inner perfection of a person, that is, on the connection of people with each other. In the beginning, connection takes place in the tens that are consciously working on their correction, but eventually the entire world should join them.

We are talking about a general complete connection because to the extent of this connection above all the disturbances we come to a general correction, and only under this condition can we expect a good life for everyone.

To reach the final correction, we need to attract the reforming light to the entire world. That is why it is so important to disseminate Kabbalah. And dissemination is not just the publication of materials in the mass media, but influencing the world with a special light from above, which we want to bring through our Kli, through all the tens, in order to awaken the desire for spiritual advancement, for connection, for the attainment of the upper world, in the rest of people.

It does not matter what a person feels and what he does, but in the end, all the inhabitants of this world without exception will have to at least to some extent engage in general corrections, and thus correct their souls.
From the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 4/25/21, “The Importance of Dissemination”

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Thank You All For The Feedback

631.1I am grateful to all those who criticize my articles for their responses. If my words hurt them, then we already have a connection. Although this connection is negative and we don’t understand each other yet, I recognize that everyone can have their own opinion. Let’s just find out the truth.

It is not important to win an argument by proving who is right and who is wrong. We want to find out what the truth really is, not from the point of view of everyone, but from the side of nature.

The truth is not something that seems right to a person because of his upbringing, one’s established worldview. It doesn’t matter what we think but where we exist and what might happen here. After all, we are in a dangerous situation in a country, in the world, on the whole globe, that is covered by a global pandemic.

Today all problems are common all around the globe. So let’s find out what they are rather than figuring out who is more right and who is less in terms of their subjective perceptions and past baggage.

Let’s go on, and instead of quarreling and recriminating, let’s stick to a simple reasonable principle, as neutral as possible without personal interference, but as scientists who value facts.

There are different opinions on the left and on the right, but if we keep a neutral, middle line, then this is the path leading to the truth. Let us be based only on the facts that occur in nature, not on what is presented to everyone, according to their mood, education, and so on.

Let’s rise above all human differences and look at the situation from above. And then we will probably see what we are facing, open up a new vision, and understand what new states we should strive for. The main thing is to reveal the truth.
From the 1st part of the Daily Kabbalah Lesson 10/14/20, “Bereshit

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My Thoughts On Twitter 10/11/20

Dr Michael Laitman Twitter

Troubled by #depression, problems?
This is the pleasure of bestowal and love
“knocking” on my door,
but I’m not ready to let it in,
to turn it into pleasure.
From Twitter, 10/11/20

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The Era Of The Last Generation

The state of the last generation is a shift to a new form of social organization, where we gradually learn how to work correctly with our ego and come to sensing an integral connection between us.

Today, we are in a transition phase that lets us realize the corruptness of our attitudes toward our social and natural environments and start rebuilding ourselves to fit the whole, complete, and caring structure of nature.

Therefore, the main value of tomorrow is our ability to mutually support and take care of each other.