The following is a copy of a letter I wrote today to Michael Landsberg – a popular sports talk show host in Canada – who has recently been opening and talking about his issues with depression, and recent campaign to support the mental illness.
I applaud your work in recognizing a point of self responsibility in where you can have an impact and make a difference in this world.
As someone who had struggled with depression all my life – and in the past have only really found ways of temporary relief from my depression, until recently in the last couple years, where I have actually began to make real progress out of it that can’t be ‘gone back on’ – I would like to share with you my perspective on depression.
Firstly, I had to inevitably face the reality that – like all things in my life – my experience of depression was self-created. This was key in taking self responsibility to actually stop creating this experience for myself, rather than ‘giving my power away’ to something or someone outside of myself within a point of blame, as something/someone else being responsible for my depression – that is dis-empowering to say the least, and is simply not how it works.
Yes, don’t get me wrong, from a certain perspective, there are what you could call ‘outside’ worldly factors and influences that supported me in this self created experience, but from from an ever broader perspective, I had to take self responsibility in realizing my own point of how I am contributing – just as every other individual in this world is – to how this world is in the grand scheme of things – so, in an indirect, roundabout sort of way, I realized that I as an individual am contributing to the creation of these outer manifestations that are then having an influence on my life and the lives of others. It may be complex, we may not be exactly certain of the intricacies of how this works, but without a doubt, I am certain of this one point – who else is making up our outer reality but each and every single human being who is participating within it?
We can’t blame the corporations – we are the corporations and we support the corporations – we can’t blame the government, we are and we support the government – we can’t blame the media, we are and we support the media – etc.
So, to sum up where I am going with this, I have found that the greatest cure for depression – and all mental illnesses for that matter – is a reality check – how does our world actually in fact operate and function, how do we actually in fact operate and function. After all, the very essence of mental illness is that of delusion/illusion – living in an individualized, perceptual reality that is self constructed, using the things around us as the stuff with which we create our delusional realities.
One of the absolute worst things I have found that we can do when treating mental illness like depression is to ‘focus on the positive’ – an age old tactic that has never changed anything in the bigger picture, over eons of time. It purely provides another temporary perceptual relief, where we rebound for a short time but always end up back in the same situation because the real issues that have caused the depression are not actually uncovered and resolved.
This is not to mention that some people really are in fact in very dire, tough circumstances/situations in their lives – no job, no money, illness etc – so from this perspective the depression is quite ‘real’ – and attempting to ‘focus on the positive’ is about the worst thing a person could try to do to get out of such situations – it is useless – only real, practically lived and applied corrective actions can change these situations. I’m not suggesting that in this case becoming depressed or focusing on the negative for the sake of further damning yourself into not changing your circumstance is the solution either.
But we have to face the facts – we live in a messed up world where there is no real such thing as ‘friendly competition’ – it is a dog eat dog world in which people are forced to compete mercilessly in pursuit of survival. Over half the worlds’ population live on less than 2.5 dollars a day, over 1 billion are living on the breadline and roughly 30 000 people die every day from starvation – a preventable atrocity – just as an example.
Frankly, as long as there are winners and losers within the context of this world system that we call capitalism – depression is inevitable – just as so many other atrocities are inevitable and predictable.
Thus – while it is cool to support individuals in the ‘smaller picture’ in stopping depression, I have found that the most effective way to stop depression, mental illness and so many other atrocities, is to correct this context of a ‘dog eat dog’ world of merciless competition, greed and self interest – this can be done through stopping the competition for survival and revolutionizing our world systems – primarily the monetary system – to one that ensures that all life is taken care of, that all life is supported equally and given an equal chance to live a full, dignified life.
To eliminate the real world issues that cause depression in the first place – abuse, exploitation, poverty, starvation , violence – etc.
If you have not heard of this yet, I suggest you investigate the Desteni group, a group of people from all over the world who are supporting a revolution in the monetary system – known as the ‘Equal Money System’ – to put an end to all forms of abuse once and for all, and create a system where all life is valued and supported equally.
I can see that, while you recognize that while you have an ego, you have a desire to be a good person Michael – let’s put that to the test – I dare you to investigate the equal money system and support a world that is best for all, where all can live a dignified life.