Alternative Spirituality Interview: "If What You’re Doing Isn’t Working, Try Something Else"

Contributor: Anonymous

Mollie: I want to talk to you about a huge topic, depression. So many people experience this, some for many years. I have struggled with it my entire remembered life, and am currently seeking total recovery. My first question is, what is depression, exactly? What causes it? 

Anonymous: Depression is caused by pushing down your energy, suppressing it.

Mollie: What is the primary technique you recommend for overcoming depression? 

Anonymous: Meditation is essential. The kind I practice is dynamic meditation, which incorporates physical activity and helps us expand our energy. This expansion and release can help with depression.

Mollie: Some people say it helps to welcome the depression, to allow it rather than to fight against it. What do you think? Does this work? Or should I just ignore it, not give it a voice? For me, it always seems to get worse when I focus on it, but maybe I need to do so anyway as a first step towards acceptance?

Anonymous: Don’t suppress it. Give it a voice, but don’t give the labels and thoughts that accompany it a voice.

Mollie: So I should meditate on the depression?

Anonymous: Don’t meditate on depression. Meditate on what we call depression–the physical and other sensations you are experiencing in that moment–without labeling it. Don’t make it into something. Don’t put mind on it. The mind is creating the depression, and the mind is trying to get rid of it? No. That can never work.

There’s a saying I like: Not knowing is the most intimate.

Mollie: So do you think that if I do what you’re saying to do–meditate on the primary feeling of the depression, without suppressing it–that I will eventually overcome the depression?

Anonymous: I believe that this and active meditation can help people in your situation. But ultimately you need to do what works for you.

Meditation teacher Osho once said, “If you don’t feel much better after having meditated regularly for a time than you did when you started, your meditation practice isn’t working.” When I heard that I remember thinking, “What do you mean? Of course my technique is working. I feel better–a bit.” Later I understood what he meant.

Don’t stick with a practice for thirty years hoping that one day you will start feeling what you want to feel. Try something else.

Mollie: What if I can’t find something that works? Should I just accept that I am a depressed person right now, and make peace with it? Sometimes I’m able to do that.

Anonymous: I would tell you to work toward true acceptance, which comes when you disidentify with the mind. Not mere acquiescence.

Acquiescence is not acceptance. Acceptance is open arms. A full embrace. It is the knowledge that this condition or situation is an absolutely essential part of your healing. If your life was totally working the way it is right now, you wouldn’t be seeking the way you are right now.

Nothing fails like success.

Mollie: So, this disidentifying with the mind stuff. Can you tell me more about that?

Anonymous: The mind is an optical illusion. It feels like there’s a thinker, a mind, but really there are just thoughts. The mind is not real. You are real.

Mollie: What does it feel like to lose your mind identification? 

Anonymous: It feels like you’re floating. You’re not pushing, you’re not pulling. But as long as you’re identified with the mind you are not floating. You are pushing and pulling.

Mollie: So the mind is this huge, powerful force that works against our emotional well-being nearly every moment of our waking lives. This just seems seriously unfair. Why does it have to be this way? Why does life have to be so full of pain? 

Anonymous: Because it is. And so, you have two choices. You can choose to be a victim. Or you can choose not to be. You can believe that life is working against you. Or you can believe that you are just unconscious, and the Universe is doing everything it can every single day to wake you up.

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4 comments

  1. Well, Mollie.
    For me depression is just a word because I never, never in my life felt it. I understand being sad for a really problem, being worry for something but not being depress for no reason. I understand grief for a loss, frustration because something doesn’t work.
    But I have love ones who really suffer from depression and the only thing I always tell them is not to think. Just do not think, keep yourselves busy working, cleaning, reading, taking care of someone. Keep your mind busy with productive things. I think someone who has not free time to think will not suffer depression. Maybe I am wrong, but as I said before I never felt it.
    Listen to music, look at the skies, the sun, the birds, there is so much beauty around us all. There are so many great things to live for, to enjoy life, to live happy !!!!!! I look at my daughter and my heart fills with love, hope. and I hope she never gets depress in her life, that she learns to be strong, happy. and to get back in her feet when life gets tough. and just enjoy every second of this adventure that is life.

    1. I actually really agree with your non-traditional advice about thinking. This applies to relationships too: Sometimes, DON’T talk about it. Just love the other person in whatever way you can that day. Love yourself. Stay busy. Keep going. Other times, I like to do The Work and analyze it in a PRODUCTIVE way.

  2. Now, see? I can go back to Pam Grout here. She says most of us live unconsciously. We let our beliefs override the fact that we can manifest the world into anything we wish. I even have some trouble with that huge idea, though I can understand how it works. If the world is just how we imagine it, then it can change (actually change instantaneously) IF we change our thoughts and manifest differently.

    1. In theory, yes. In practice, I’m not holding my breath! I like to ask for what I want and then just see what happens. Hold all very lightly.

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