It's primarily the buildup of suppressed feelings that results in the chronic
depressed and manic-depressive conditions. Depression is not a disease or
illness that we catch, even in its most severe forms. It is not genetically
acquired, even though persons who are susceptible to it may tend to be attracted
to one another and may even incarnate in family groups, as will occur with
other characteristics as well. Depression is the result of ignorance and
mismanagement of experience. We fall into a pattern of suppressing feelings
instead of allowing them to release, which results in addictive tendencies,
depletion of energy, and the condition we call depression.
If you are experiencing significant depression, you
need to enter upon a dedicated program, either by yourself or with help, of
releasing these suppressed feelings. Many feelings – basic feelings
such as anxiety, anger, loneliness, jealousy, sexual compulsiveness –
are likely to be already conscious, waiting to be engaged properly so they
can be cleared. If you work with them, you will be led to deeper core feelings
and patterns that will ultimately result in complete healing and balance.
If you are conscious only of the depression and not
of any negative feelings in particular, then you are in a repressed condition
– without awareness – and working to uncover and release the
feelings is even more urgent. The repressed feelings attract adversity,
failure, accident, and ultimately result in breakdown of the physical body.
Don’t react to depression by trying to escape
or compensate through other activities. Don’t blame circumstances,
events, or other people for your depression. It is possible to lose perspective
and project depression onto unrelated areas of life, thinking that you are
depressed because of this or that condition without understanding the real
cause. Instead, process the depression.
Processing the experience of depression, even though
it is the result of suppression and not a core feeling in itself, may proceed
exactly as with any feeling. Recognize that depression is an energetic condition.
Feel it, witness it, as an energetic experience. Detach and break your identification
with it. Use the powerful tools of breathwork and bodywork. Activate healing
energy, enter alpha, and especially breathe into the feelings of depression.
Allow the healing energies of the universe to come in as you accept and
watch. As you engage the feeling of depression, surrender entirely to the
sensation. Allow the depression to be. Doing only this can bring tremendous
relief, because you are no longer trying to avoid.
Ceasing resistance to the depression will change your
entire energy flow. As you sit with depression, the feelings behind it eventually
will come into awareness to be processed. These can be any kind of feelings; no
one particular type of feeling is behind depression. Do not think you are
getting worse when this happens. Recognize that the subconscious is being
revealed to be healed. Trust that you are being guided and protected.
Depression is the condition
of energy depletion
Suppressing feelings requires large amounts of psychic
energy. This contributes substantially to the condition of energetic depletion that we call depression.
When you work with feelings of depression, you will sense a recharging taking
place. You will draw energy to youself to automatically replenish your exhausted
reserves. When the experience of depression itself is integrated, it becomes
the natural complement to expenditure of psychic energies. Depression becomes
the time to recharge, to heal. It can be joyous and restful, once surrendered
to. Physical imbalances that may correspond to the energy depletion also
will come into alignment.
Mild depression will arise from normal cycles of living.
Since we are active beings, a certain amount of depression is inevitable;
it is the complement to activity. If you can accept and open to depression,
you will recharge your energy reserves instead of suppressing the depression
with rejecting attitudes, such as becoming depressed about the depression.
Depression can be suppressed and stored in the energy
body; the depletion becomes larger and is unable to satisfactorily recharge. If you have
a pattern of avoiding depression, you probably have a good deal of suppressed
depression. You will have to work with it in a reasonable manner, not exceeding
your toleration point. Do not react to your depression; do not become motivated
by it. Eventually acceptance will bring you to the point where you experience
depression as the natural recharging of energies.
act as suppressants
All chemical substances used to modify or mood alter feelings, including
depression, do not serve to actually resolve the feelings but only to suppress
the feelings from conscious awareness. This includes natural substances
such as St. John’s wort as well as prescription drugs. Unfortunately,
that it may be of “natural” origin does not change the way any
mood-altering substance works: by suppressing feelings. If we regularly
turn to substances as the means to control feelings, we are only digging
ourselves deeper into the dark hole of suppression.
I view the medical establishment’s reliance
on pharmacology as the primary strategy for handling mood disorder as materialistic
ignorance of the highest degree. Brain chemistry is the result of feelings,
not the other way around, and trying to change brain chemistry to change
feelings is simply absurd. Whether it’s lithium, Prozac, illegal drugs,
alcohol, caffeine, nicotine, St. John’s wort, or any of the newest,
latest designer drugs, all chemically induced mood changes take us out of
our feelings. Integration becomes impossible. We enter a no-man’s
land of self-rejection, cut off from our soul and the eventuality of real
healing. The popularity of mood-altering substance use today is a compelling
comment on both the poverty of the world’s emotional state and the
utter lack of comprehension about how to handle it.
However, in spite of my condemnation of substance
usage, at times it may be called for. If conditions are so severe that it
is impossible to function, judicious use of substances may be justified
when coupled with other forms of holistic psychological work – meditation,
breathwork, bodywork, EC processing, therapy, or support groups. But you should
recognize that progress with inner work is limited when substances
are used; feelings are not available for processing. They are kept suppressed
by the substance. You are merely treading water and will eventually experience
a backlash from the suppression that the substance causes. If you are using
any form of substance, your priority should be getting off it so that work
Release yourself from the illness
and “syndrome” trap
The medical establishment is fond of labeling depression
an illness. I wish to make clear that, in my opinion, implying that depression
is an illness is a disservice to the person as well as an impediment to
resolution. Illness is usually interpreted to mean something has been “caught”;
it is beyond the individual’s control, and the “cure”
must be effected by outside intervention. Even though the motive behind
the labeling of the patient’s condition as illness may be benevolent
– trying to assuage feelings a patient may have of being “bad”
– the subtle shift of responsibility away from self and into a blaming
or victim mode (it’s the illness, not me) undermines the most basic
healing orientation, that of taking full responsibility for oneself and
The medical establishment currently is encouraging
this distortion of responsibility by identifying and blaming a multitude
of other “syndromes” for behavior or experience. I understand
the need for a label to identify types of behavior, but what is implied
is, again, that an illness is present. Instead, we need to understand that
behavioral acting out is a form of defense from underlying feelings, especially
in the case of obsessive-compulsive syndrome and other similar ones, and
that painful inner experience such as depression and even disease is the
result of unconscious mismanagement of personal psychic energies.