In an absurd world..

In a world whose absurdity appears to be so impenetrable, we simply must reach a greater degree of understanding among men, a greater sincerity. We must achieve this or perish. 

To do so, certain conditions must be fulfilled: men must be frank (falsehood confuses things), free (communication is impossible with slaves). Finally, they must feel a certain justice around them.

~ Albert Camus

When it doesn’t even matter 

With the suicide of Chester Bennington, depression is once again in the news and the online community is telling let’s talk each other out of it. Nothing can be more hilarious or ridiculous than this. To begin with let me tell you that no one in this world understands depression let alone have a cure for it. You can’t just talk yourself out of it and if you can then it’s not depression it’s sadness or a mood swing. The “doctors” don’t understand even 5 % of how the brain works so they pretty much depend upon trial and error. After all our brain is perhaps the most complex phenomenon in the universe !

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/is-depression-just-bad-chemistry/

http://bigthink.com/paul-ratner/our-brains-think-in-11-dimensions-discover-scientists
Even the drugs psychiatrist’s prescribe are experimental and there is no way to predict the effect it will have on the patient, if at all. The other thing is that once you start on drugs it’s a downward spiral if a dependence is created. A long term use only means increase in dosage which makes you a Zombie – a dead body of sorts. The other fall out is that most drugs themselves cause suicidal tendencies and induce the user to pull the plug on themselves.

But then is there a way out or is it like cancer – once you get it it’s only a matter of time and how your luck plays out on you. The answer is yes and no. It’s a fight and a fight to finish so a lot depends on your own will power – whether you will give up to the endless pain or suffering or you will stretch and endure with no hope or relief in sight. You may get lucky or you may not but there is no way to tell.

As in cancer your own body turns against you, in case of depression your own mind turns against you. And you can’t fight a problem with the same tool with which it was created. Your body can fight external bacteria and virus but it’s difficult for it to fight it’s own cells which have kind of rebelled and one cell does not know if the other cell is an enemy or a friend. Still the problem is pathological, physical so at least you can see the damage as it happens and try to do something about it whether it works or not is a different thing. In depression you can’t even see the damage you can only feel it but then how to show it to other people ? There is no measure of intensity of clinical depression – stage 1 and stage 4 can happen simultaneously within the span of a week or even within the same day. 

Om Swami in his book “When all is not well” has taken a systematic yogic approach to dealing with depression. But even he treats each case individually in his book and does not have a scalable one cure fits all model. His approach loosely hinges on working towards a healthy mind and body but it’s no way prescriptive. There are a lot of factors which may be contributing to depression and he tries to experiment by taking some or all of them away and then start working on rebuilding the entire personality. It is a long road with no guarantee if success except the Guru’s grace. In almost all cases the Guru’s grace prevails if there is enough devotion. 

I have to end this post now else I will just keep writing but the moot point is that the online crap out there doesn’t know shit about this and so do your friends and family. There is hope for you only if you can take it upon yourself. It is quite a winding road with many dangers and surprises but the destination is beautiful and worth it. If you just hang in there, keep doing what you must and don’t give up no matter what, One day the clouds will disappear and you will see the clear blue skies.  Trust me. 

To quote Faiz :

दिल नाउम्मीद नहीं नाकाम ही तो है

लंबी है ग़म की शाम मगर शाम ही तो है..

She is always there..

Remember the times you were sick with a fever when you were a little boy or girl? Remember how awful it felt to be so sick? But then your mother or father, or perhaps a grandparent, would put their hand on your burning forehead and it felt so wonderful. You could feel the nectar of love in their hand, and that was enough to comfort and reassure you. Just knowing they were there, beside you, brought relief. If you do not live close to your mother anymore, or if your mother is no longer present in her usual bodily form, you have to look deeply to see that she is in fact always with you. You carry your mother in every cell of your body. Her hand is still in your hand. If your parents have already passed away and you practice looking deeply like this, you can have an even closer relationship with your parents than that of someone whose parents are still alive but who cannot communicate easily with them. 

You may like to take a moment now to look at your hand. Can you see your mother’s hand in your hand? Or your father’s? Look deeply into your hand. With this insight, and with all the love and care of your parents, bring your hand up to your forehead and feel the hand of your mother or father touching your forehead. Allow yourself to be cared for by your parents in you. They are always with you.
– Thich Nhat Hanh 

Osho quotes Majaz Lucknowi

मेरे किये जो हो सकता है, वह मैं कर रहा हूं। लेकिन तुम भी हाथ बढ़ाओ। मैंने तुम्हारे द्वार पर दस्तक दी है, कम से कम दरवाजा खोलो!
नहीं तो ऐसा न हो कि तुम समझदारी में बैठे ही रह जाओ। यह मधुशाला सदा न खुली रहेगी। कोई मधुशाला सदा नहीं खुली रहती है। द्वार-दरवाजे बंद होने का समय आ जाएगा।
उस महफिले-कैफो-मस्ती में,

उस अंजुमने-इर्फानी में

सब जाम-बकफ बैठे ही रहे,

हम पी भी गये, छलका भी गये ~मजाज़ 

तुम बुद्धिमानों की सभा जैसी सभा मत बना लेना अपनी।
उस अंजुमने-इर्फानी में

–बड़े बुद्धिमानों की सभा थी।

उस महफिले-कैफो-मस्ती में

–मस्ती और आनंद और उल्लास के क्षण में बुद्धिमानों की बड़ी सभा थी।

सब जाम-बकफ बैठे ही रहे

–बुद्धिमान थे, कैसे पीएं! तो अपने जाम सामने रखकर बैठे ही रहे। गैर-बुद्धिमान जो थे–हम पी भी गये, छलका भी गये!

पी लो और छलका लो! कब तब जाम लिये बैठे रहोगे? किसकी राह देखते हो? कोई कहे? किसकी प्रतीक्षा कर रहे हो? समय बीता जाता है। पल-पल, घड़ी-घड़ी मधुशाला के द्वार बंद होने का समय आया जाता है। फिर मत रोना! अभी अपनी करोगे, फिर मत चीखना-चिल्लाना! क्योंकि बंद दरवाजों के सामने चीखने-चिल्लाने से फिर कुछ भी नहीं होता।

और मैं कहता हूं, ऐसा बहुत-से लोग कर रहे हैं। महावीर को गये पच्चीस सौ साल हो गये, कितने लोग अभी भी उस दरवाजे के सामने चीख रहे, चिल्ला रहे हैं! उन्हीं को जैन कहते हैं। बुद्ध को गये पच्चीस सौ साल हो गये, कितने लोग उस दरवाजे के सामने प्याले लिये खड़े हैं कि खोलो द्वार, हम प्यासे हैं; भरो हमारे प्याले! लेकिन मधुशाला जा चुकी! उन्हीं को तो बौद्ध कहते हैं। 

ऐसे ही ईसाई हैं, हिंदू हैं, मुसलमान हैं..

The Scream 

I was walking along the road with two friends – the sun was setting – suddenly the sky turned blood red – I paused, feeling exhausted, and leaned on the fence – there was blood and tongues of fire above the blue-black fjord and the city – my friends walked on, and I stood there trembling with anxiety – and I sensed an infinite scream passing through nature.
~ Edward Munch