I don’t routinely beg for your comments, but do here, because I am very deeply curious about strong reactions to stories and opinions on depression. At the end of this article are some strong reactions that blind-side me. If those of you who see the connections clearly would describe them in your own words, I would value it deeply.
[blurb] We label a depressed state “bad.” Is that arbitrary conditioning? https://feelwithneil.com/2021/06/07/tree-envy-and-genesis/ (Tree Envy and Genesis)
Dormant, barren but for a few crackling withered and dead leaves that couldn’t escape the snare of prickly gray branches, trees are entirely alive through winter, but that form of alive is slowed and depressed into deep•rest, without which the freshness of springtime and the warmth of lush summer cannot be lived again.
They have gone dormant precisely to protect the fullness of life to come, unifying the dormancy with the fullness. As one, they are one; is it artificial for us to put them into a linear sequence on a timeline? If it is, why do memories evoke such strong emotion when recalled? When made present by recollection? Those emotions aren’t being felt in the past when that happens! And if memories can thus be made present, why can’t the emotions of anticipation count as present?
Why when humans slow down in a depressed deep-rest state to unify the future or past with the present, do we call it “bad”? Pain, sadness, suffering, depression… they are all forms of living which, like a dormant tree, are very much alive.
Trees do not get to choose a climate. They cannot uproot themselves and migrate toward the warmer equator. Do you think they resent that?
They don’t look resentful to me when the birds return to perch and sing songs in their canopy next season. They are at the mercy of the world around them.
But that is a very self-centered, egoic, anthropomorphic way of thinking and projecting the artificial constructions of our glorious mind onto other creatures, isn’t it? Are we a higher form of life than those canopies? We seem to think so, because we seem to ‘think’ we can control the climate and the world around us. ‘Think.’ Sometimes we think poorly or wrongly…
And when we look at someone gone dormant in a deep-rest state to survive for the fullness coming, we feel “bad” for them. Our feeling bad for them must contribute to their feeling bad. Has someone, or everyone, seeded a false reality in our mind with toxic words like good and bad?
Trees are blessed not to have such gullible minds, to not be born of ego. In their blessed state, they do not need a garden-God to warn them not to eat fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil.
Please – I’m begging – leave a comment with your impressions on the responses below, or the article itself.
Neil D. 2021-06-07
Reactions 1,2,&3 are a single share; I divided them myself for ease of commentary, but 2&3 have to be taken together for intended context. Your remarks on these shares would be deeply valuable to my curiosity about how people react to any stories or opinions about depresssion.
1. “…depression is too big a subject to minimalize as a place of regrowth. If one was able to add regrowth, they wouldn’t be depressed… if we could control it and what happens in that dormant time, I would sure like to know how…”
2. “…it wouldn’t be called depression if it were a place for inner growth–that inner growth is for self actualization… depression is way way way down under that pyramid.”
3. “Self actualized people don’t get depressed because they have good brains and don’t have a lot to worry about. Seriously.”
4. “Depression is inherently bad…. can maime and kill, so I take it a bit more seriously.”
5. “Depression cannot be controlled, cannot be thought of as self reflection. …explain how you can voluntarily control [neurotransmitters]?”
* Trees. Roaring. https://feelwithneil.com/2020/07/24/tree-roaring/
* Aching To Know https://feelwithneil.com/2021/02/16/aching-to-know/
* Ode to a Sacred Twig – An exercise for the soul https://feelwithneil.com/2020/03/12/ode-to-your-sacred-stick-an-exercise-for-the-soul/