04 Nov Depression
We choose our joys and sorrows long before we experience them. ~ Kahlil Gibran
Depression is defined by Webster’s as: “severe despondency and dejection, typically felt over a period of time and accompanied by feelings of hopelessness and inadequacy.” I do not know a single human being on this planet who has not experienced this condition at some point in their lifetime.
Depression takes many different forms within due to self-imposed fears. For some people it can even be organic.
But the most typical form of depression is best represented by the story I am about to share with you. My Master gave this to me over 50 years ago and it saved me from my own DNA as both of my parent’s suffered from depression.
There were once twin brothers who worked very closely with each other. Every night, the first brother would sneak into the village and throw soot on the windows of all the villagers’ homes. Every morning, the other brother would clean all of the windows, feeling a great deal of guilt and shame for what the first brother had done the night before. This vicious cycle continued day in and day out, without question.
Depression is nothing more than another form of gratification that the untrained mind uses to heighten the performance of the ego by lowering resistance to simplicity. Precious few are willing to penetrate beyond the comatose state of the mind they have created for themselves through spiritual indifference, insistence upon unrelenting gratification as the benchmark for a happy life and perpetual emotional and mental habits that make the pulse of their living dreary and melancholy.
We are a nation of ‘noise,’ which we use to distract us from the real problem - how we misuse our minds. ~ Siraj
Most people willfully spend their lives in obsessive desire. Obsession is admired in our society, labeled as “passion” to sanitize our fanaticism toward gratification. Rooted in desire, obsession deteriorates down to either selfish hope or stubborn determination to see things only one way, OUR way, to the exclusion of all else.
This perpetuates a deep inner conflict between our instinctual need to survive at all costs and the imagined fears we believe we are inadequate to endure. These organic primitive urges live at a very deep instinctual level within us, often referred to as the will to live, the struggle for human survival or the fight or flight syndrome. Both men and women feel it at different extents within themselves depending on their own personal evolution.
Depression is the result of the fear that we are not suited for the competition that is implied through natural selection, hence we become ruthless in our efforts to live by techniques that are mean spirited and self-absorbed. From the moment we are born into this world we enter into a subtle form of competition, which as we get older becomes an overt battle for the survival of our own “self.” We are so obsessed with our own survival that we have forgotten how to live within our life. Everything we do is to make sure we are “as good as” or “better than” others in an effort to prevent losing whatever we believe is essential to our survival.
Desire, obsession and fear for our own survival keep our minds small and unable to perceive the great truths of living. ~ Siraj
We miss the entire big picture of our life through small minded obsessions. Another story…
A man went into a local small town restaurant. With his meal, he received two delicious slices of homemade bread. When he went to check out with his waitress, she asked him if he enjoyed his meal. He replied “Yes, but I wish I had another slice of bread.”
The next week, when he again dined at the restaurant, the waitress remembered and gave him a third slice of bread. After the meal, he again remarked that the meal was splendid, but he wished that he had had yet another slice of bread.
This continued on for several weeks, where after dining, the man stated his wish for another slice of bread with his meal, and the waitress giving him an additional slice the following week.
One night, when the man came in, the waitress was too busy to slice the loaf of bread into slices so she quickly cut the entire loaf in half, giving the man both halves. When the meal was complete, the man remarked, “The meal was spectacular, but could you please tell me why you’re back to serving me only two slices?”
Do you see the obsession in this story? Did you see the obsession in the first story?
Indulging in depression only creates more depression. It is an undisciplined use of the mind that leads to a life of indifference to Love. ~ Siraj
So what is a disciplined life? The immature person looks at the word discipline as though I am talking about giving up all of the “fun” to be had in this life (“fun” being defined as alcohol, drugs and other indulgent forms of entertainment to such a degree that their entire life is consumed by it). They insist on ignoring that life is about Love in order to sustain the gratification of their indulgences and obsessions.
There is only one antidote to all of this and that is the mercy found through compassionate awakening. This awakening must become a way of life and not merely treated as a “remedy” for some disruptive or undesirable disorder that is disrupting a our life. It must be a deliberate, conscious effort to bring forth insight. If we live solely from the physical, as the physical, for the physical…we will never find the way to awakening. Discipline is essential for any of us who seek a life worth living…a life lived consciously.
Through the practice of meditation we discover a new way to live that awakens us to a new mind. ~ Siraj
We live as cowards afraid to face the beauty of our life. Most people are terrified to give up their obsessions and compulsions for the discipline of opening up to a new mind. This new mind is not an intellectual, acquiring or groping mind, nor does it seek to control life. This new mind realizes through intuition that Life cannot be “controlled” – we must flow with Life, not against it, which brings a depth of awareness that liberates us to the meaning of soulfulness through Love.
Simply put, the discipline for “self observation” means the ability to step back and see what is occurring within us without the need for guilt and shame. None of us are what we think we are. When we begin to enter into the alchemy of spiritual practice, all logic and reasoning must be thrown out the door. We can no longer cling to ideas and ideals about ourselves that we have imagined to be true. We will have to persevere beyond a great deal of delusion and illusion to discover the core of our being. This core is Love.
Meditate with sincerity...without looking for a ``cure`` to make their life more ``comfortable``
Practice disciplined “self observation” to break cycles of gratification and self-indulgence
Live openly and unassuming, without interpreting or judging any given experience that is happening
Live without hesitancy, Love without limits, forgive without rules, give without agenda
Fall in Love with the energy that lives within you