Depression has become a news “headline” again and it is certainly true that many individuals suffer from this difficult affliction. 

Metapsychiatry offers a definition of depression that sheds light on this source of human suffering that offers a way out.

Depression is the loss, either real or imagined, of a person, place, thing or idea that is seen as essential to ones well-being.

A loss is a loss. It can be profound, and needs to be mourned. Anyone would lose interest in life if they believed that the source of their happiness and well-being was gone. Just as a computer will turn off if the plug is unplugged. But is it true that persons, places, things and ideas are essential to our well-being? Are we computers that have various attachments that keep us going?

No. The source of our well-being is much larger than ourselves. It is the context of existence itself, the wholeness of life that we are each part of. This source is eternal, immutable, was never born and will never die. There is no plug that can be unplugged, even if we try.

It may be true that something or someone may be lost to us, after all, everything in the material world is impermanent. But the truth of our being, the source of existence is not gone.

This is the light at the end of the tunnel of loss. It is a healing journey that can be taken by anyone.

It is one part of the journey we are all on to wake up to who we really are and to the purpose of our lives. It will take willingness, time, attention, meditation, prayer and understanding in order for depression to be healed.