'Depression is still the Great Enemy...Yet through depression we enter depths & in depths find soul'
Updated: Dec 6, 2022
An interesting topic to discuss this time of year and yet, as the festive season approaches, it's not always, ironically, a time of bliss for many-whether the reasons are due to monetary ones, a sense of loneliness, or its checkered with memories of lost, significant people....And yet, depression is very much a common symptom of the human condition, essential to the tragic sense of life, but not something most people would like to entertain, or enter into a dialogue about...And of course, this symptom is enough of a prompt for many people to seek a Therapist, getting guidance and insight on how to navigate through this uncomfortable phase with a dark eye...And yet all of us, no matter when, will experience this visitation, this mood, at some point/s in our lives-be it fleeting; seasonal; or when we are going through a transitional life stage (which I would term a 'liminal space' or a 'waiting room' phase); or something that is a radical game-changer-which comes along, like an image of an hour glass being turned completely upside down (this may be a 'dark night of the soul' or a night sea journey...). And it's surprising, James Hillman argues (in A Blue Fire; 1989:p153), that so much energy is used up in defending against these feelings, with a tendency to deny it, wiggle out of it and find diversions to avoid it. This avoidance, this masking, so present in everyday life, in social media, typically manifests instead, in images of joy and cliches of 'positivity'; and has become so present in the narrative of the medical model (like being seduced into popping a pill to feel better, and masking the source of the blue mood...).
Hillman continues, that the roots of this defense actually goes back to Christianity, which insists that there is light at the end of the tunnel-because Christ resurrects and behind every crucifixion fantasy is a resurrection fantasy....But what if we questioned this philosophy, this myth, and we decide to remain true to how we are feeling, to surrender to what is? Is it not, possibly that this image, is a messenger from the gods?; a chance to reflect, to explore, and uncover the depths that it wants, on it's terms....? So what if you allowed for this visitation, this portal, to be a sign to enter into a deepening, a space for soul-making? And what if you followed the thread and uncovered something way beneath the surface that you never could have imagined....?