SUICIDE AND DEPRESSION
It’s interesting to observe the reaction to suicide. Such a jolting and violent slap in the face when we hear of it. So many questions around why and how, and a fascination with learning the details. So much depression. Don't be fooled thinking it's just Americans...depression is worldwide, although may not be "diagnosed" as such. (suppression of women & minorities, sexual repression of both men & women, political/emotional/physical oppression = depression of humanity)
I carried my own depression as a teenager up until my 30s. I didn’t know it was depression (I thought it was just my lot in life) until my 20s when I went through therapy. I continued to battle with it until around 33 when I found my spiritual path…spiritual not religious…and since then depression hasn’t visited me. Deep diving into emotions and funks can come through occasionally, but nothing where I feel like I can’t keep my head above water. Now it is more about experiencing the ebb & flow of life.
Fortunately for me suicide was never a thought or option in my mind. There was something inside of me that “knew” life had more to offer. I couldn't voice it but it definitely took control when necessary. For awhile I believed this “more to offer” would be given through being involved with the entertainment business, where it seemed one could have everything they wanted. Money, luxury and fame were presented to me, but again something inside of me “knew” that wasn’t the ultimate offering of life. Working in the entertainment field I was exposed to countless people who seemingly “had it all” but inside were desperate to fill the black hole inside of them. I too felt lonely in the midst of so much excess.
Finally, at 32 I found my way to my first spiritual teacher in NYC. She helped me to connect to this piece that always “knew” there was more. It took about 4 years of emotional digging to get there. Once I touched this piece within me & realized I/it was connected to everything and everyone, I have never gone into depression again…and I soon realized that a sense of loneliness/disconnection is where my depression had its foundation. I wasn’t connected to my True Self/Essence/Life Force, and therefore couldn’t maintain real connection anywhere else in life.
Loneliness was not because I spent so much time alone, in fact I rarely was by myself. I had a big family, lots of friends and in my 20s was in a long-term relationship and had an active social life…but I often felt lonely, even sleeping right next to someone. I tried with everything I had to turn my thoughts around, but they were too strong. I would look to others to bring me happiness, fulfillment, love…and sometimes it worked, but what came from the external was fleeting. And then I would go back to darkness. I was a smart, ambitious, beautiful young woman who could accomplish anything she wanted, this was evident to others…but all I saw was an average woman that must be extra fantastic to be worthy of any attention or accolades. And so that’s how I was…extra fantastic at work, extra fantastic as a girlfriend, extra fantastic as a friend, unconsciously hoping this would lead to what I thought would be a feeling of connection/belonging. Through all of this grasping I was lonely for my Self, disconnected from my Life Force.
The piece inside of me that “knew” there was more waited patiently in the background for the first 3 decades of my life. And then she came to the forefront with not a lot of games left to play. And either by "choice" or circumstance I left the entertainment world, left the boyfriend(s), and stumbled my way back to my Self over the next 6 years.
As I write this I find that I no longer connect to the story/past of being depressed. I know it was true for me then, but I have no identification with it in this moment.
This is what Freedom feels like.
Depression comes in many guises, some situational, some chemical imbalance, some environmental. For those of you struggling with depression…I’m not saying my path is the path for you. What I do believe is if everyone felt connected to their TRUE self they would have different perceptions about themselves and life in general. It takes a lot of effort - often a combination of therapy, self-inquiry, diet, exercise - and when you are depressed effort can be lacking. Know that there are many of us who have gone through it. It was during my time working in entertainment that I saw depression often led to addiction. Dr. Gabor Maté (https://drgabormate.com/) is an interesting physician who is probably most known for his work around addiction. One thing he says is that the root of addiction is linked to lack of connection…connection to others and connection to Self. I believe this is very true. Here is a link if this interests
If I could give you one piece of encouragement: Sit with your breath. Pour everything you've got into the inhale and the exhale. Notice how expansion and contraction is the natural flow. Breathe deeply. This is your Life Force - no one can take that away from you, no one can give it to you. It is yours to experience. It seems so simple and not useful...but I know from my own experience the breath is the fuel of Life. What you breathe in is given to you by Nature, what you breathe out is used by Nature. Nature will never abandon you...offer yourself to it and it will feed you forever.
As I sit here, literally on the other side of the world of where my origin of birth is, watching my fellow Americans grieve, wandering about social media in a state of confusion, rage, hopelessness and in some unbelievable cases, spewing off memes that are so utterly inhumane and incomprehensible...I ask myself how do I deal with this? Do I allow myself to go in to all of this emotion, do I stay as the observer of my emotional state...I don't get "here" very often anymore. I feel emotions deeply yet I understand nature (to the best of my ability) and it's need to rebalance, I understand people are wounded and desperate for attention, healing, love, CONNECTION and do some crazy things in search of fulfillment. I watch my newsfeed fill with understandable sadness, rage & fear...often to be met with arrogance and belittlement disguised as intelligence, or even worse, enlightenment. Since the last US election I've watched "awake" beings call other people idiots because they voted, or didn't vote, or voted for one particular person; I've watched intelligent people post the dubious threat of "unfriending" or post that it's all "your" fault for whatever tragedy has taken place; I've watched tragedy after tragedy take place & within moments there are memes citing blame, reference to politics and various versions of "I told you so" because I'm so much smarter, cooler, 'in the know' than you are; all before parents, children, friends have had a chance to catch their breath after the news of loss. We are so desperate in our need to be relieved of this horrible mirror image that has been placed right smack in front of our face that we lash out in the most childish and worthless ways. We are so numbed out to the way we are behaving towards other human beings, let alone animals and our earth, that any sense of humanity is fleeting with the next twitter quote.
I'm not an activist in the public eye. I send my support in what ways I can to different organizations and people as I am able to. I believe my biggest offering to the world is to heal as much of myself as I can...to be one person walking the Earth with a little less anger, hurt, confusion. To judge others a little less. This is what I keep going back to...hold your own Jana, and help others learn to do the same.
I still don't know how to stay abreast of it all. I can't ignore my emotions. I can stay unattached to them- feel them and then let them move on so I can stay in a clear head as I function in this world. Sometimes it takes longer than other times. I'm not afraid to feel it all. And I'm not afraid to keep moving forward. I appreciate those who are activists & speak up. I appreciate both extremes in a way that I believe this is what it takes to find balance.
I post this not for reassurance, counter opinions or advice...please reread that.
I post it to let you know I see you, I hear you, I am you. My publicsilence on most matters is a choice. But do not mistake my silence for denial, avoidance or disinterest. I'm dealing in the best way I know of for me. I trust you will do the same.
To my fellow Americans I hold the faith that we will eventually rise out of this hell hole we have created. To the people of Bali I hold you in my heart and prayers that Nature and the people of the island will soon find their way back to balance. For so many others who are dealing with the effects of Mother Nature, war, political and social upheaval, I pray we, as a human race do not sit idle, that we keep our eyes on the Light, our hearts in active Love and may our daily life be our new religion.
"...later that night
i held an atlas in my lap
ran my fingers across the whole world
where does it hurt?
everywhere" ~Warsan Shire
~2015 Bali New moon
I like to read a bit about astrology and my first teacher has been an astrologer for over 50 years so it was a part of what I learned from her. There are a variety of astrology theories...vedic, mayan, shamanic, etc., all of which have interesting insights. I'm not devoted enough to use it in my daily life although I know many who do. Pretty much everything I've read about this particular new moon says the same thing...it's a big one, portals are open and another reminder to be clear, conscious and steady as we continue to step into this "new" world/paradigm.
I've been thinking about this a lot...the "new" world. Living in the Bali bubble, in the community I lived in, it's considered fact. Traveling throughout the rest of the world it may not be spoken about in such easy and accessible ways, but it's still there...there is something new/different available, it's just not the norm. The ones who taste it are farther apart from each other, they live in pockets of community: Random people are having experiences that they can't explain. Energies are moving within their bodies and around them. Synchronicities are baffling the mind that wants to believe it controls everything.
I'm watching cryptocurrency move through growing pains, watching people learn how to grow their own food and make their own necessary products rather than giving in to convenience, watching people behind the scenes create new foundations for resources such as finances, medical, education. I'm finding my own way of living that refuses to believe I am a victim of anything, that 100% believes I am a portal of creation, that understands I am forever a student of & a participant in this awe-inspiring experience called Life.
I believe this is the "new" world...one in which I as a human on this earth understands my role in Nature, understands that Everything is Divine, understands that Energy is all there is...until there isn't. I believe we all have a choice to be a part of the "new" world, or remain in the same way we've been living. I actually don't think it matters what you believe, in some respects, it's more of how you choose to experience life. There are people suffering in so many ways, and I don't have the answers as to why that is. I also don't discount that it's "easier" for me to live in this way than it is for others due to my life's circumstances...due to choices I've made. Some choices in my life have been very hard. But this one is not hard...the one where I choose to live in this "new" world. A world of possibility and potentiality. Heaven on earth, 5D. New Paradigm. New World. Call it what you will...I'm in.
© Jnana Janani