You think depression is a clinical problem, worthy of harsh medications and long-term therapy.

However, there may be deeper causes that most medical professionals don’t look at.  Usually depression is characterized as an illness or as a biological, psychological, social, or spiritual disorder. We will start at a different place by asserting that the thing called “depression” is human sadness in one or more of three areas: sadness about the self, sadness about one’s circumstances, and sadness about life itself.

Before we address these three varieties of sadness I want to present you with the rationale for looking at “depression” as human sadness and not as an illness or a disorder. It is no longer possible to feel sad and blue without someone wanting to call that “depression.” People are so over-medicated and under “meditated” that society assumes all varieties of sadness are in some way related to depression.

Of course, the human dynamic is so deep that it takes holistic practitioners many years to convince men and women that there are ways to heal thy self without harming more. Meditation and deep introspection of the soul are two ways in which depression “or amplified and un-assessed sadness” can start to feel better.

For the longest time human beings made the sensible distinction between feeling sad for reasons (say, because they were jobless and homeless) and feeling sad for “no reason,” a state traditionally called melancholia. With the rise of four powerful industries, the pharmaceutical industry, the psychotherapy industry, the social work industry, and the pastoral industry, it is has become increasingly difficult for people to consider that sadness might be a very normal reaction to unpleasant facts and circumstances. Cultural forces have transformed a great deal of normal sadness into the “mental illness” of depression.

In fact, “sadness” and “depression” have become virtual synonyms.

According to the biological depression model, you are the problem: something in you is not working correctly. According to the psychological depression model, you are the problem: maybe it’s your learned helplessness, your unresolved conflicts with your parents, your low self-esteem, or something. According to the social depression model, you are the problem: maybe you’ve become too isolated, maybe you haven’t provided yourself with enough social support, etc. According to the spiritual depression model, you are still the problem: you haven’t made the right spiritual connections, given yourself over to God, tapped into your spiritual nature, and so on.

These four models identify you as the problem. Life is never the problem. How odd! How odd to think that our sadness might not sometimes be related to our life circumstances or to the facts of existence. Holistic modalities such as Reiki and Soul Alignment have been successful for thousands of years.