Grief is not the same as Depression
Dr. Nandi Hetenyi
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Grief is not the same as depression.
Grief is very human and natural. It is the heart’s response to the ever shifting tides of change and movement and rhythms of all things life. It is life force energy moving through as love breaking the heart open, longing to keep the heart open. Making more space for more love and more joy….the more love and joy and pleasure, the more grief, the more we expand into the infinite cycles that exist at the very core of who we are.
Depression is stuck grief.
It is life force energy stuck in the heart, the nervous system and the body. It is literally the oppression of the soul, the pushing down and away the tides of life. It is solidified fear. It manifests as shame or anxiety sometimes or anger or deep, deep sadness and mistrusting life. The sparkle is gone because it is stuck. All the grief gets turned inwards on the self.
We are not static creatures.
This culture conditions us to be afraid of change.
To be afraid of change is to be afraid of grief.
Fear of the natural cycles of life.
Fear of death and the deep feeling that comes with transformation.
Fear of life changing if we change.
So, these fears can crystallize in our heart space and shut us down.
Strange that there is so much lifelessness in depression when the very thing it is protesting is the fear of not being alive. Depression paints grief into a corner, traps the soul in a folie a deux, a shared cultural psychosis about the stagnation and circumstances of life being “what they are,” that this heaviness is how “life is.” It may be how things are but it certainly is not how life is.
Depression does not exist anywhere other than in humans. It is not how life is, no is it a natural.
Normal does not mean it’s healthy.
Depression is a reaction to grief not be allowed to open the heart.
It is a natural extension of not being able to grieve and be healthy, something we can learn as children…shut down feeling. It is. Not safe. It is being lost inside a trauma trance that this culture is built on and beginning to believe that is what is real and enforced through all forms of media and tv and movies.
We’ve gotten too good at adjusting to an unhealthy culture…so much so that we agree to be depressed and take pills and try to fix our minds when it is our hearts that are broken and it is too taboo and “dark” to talk about such things as grieving and dying.
Yet, it is in learning how to court grief that we resurrect the life fire inside our soul, that our hearts beat with a greater attunement to the heart beat of the earth, that the color is restored to our cheeks.
Grieving is a form the great river of life force energy that sometimes expresses itself as sexuality, sensuality and orgasm. Sometimes as love and grief and rage. Sometimes as inspiration and creativity and art and new ideas. It’s all the great river of the soul working her way through you, life longing to live its expression of itself as YOU in human form.
It opens you. It humanizes you. It awakens compassion and grace and love and attunement. It brings you back to life. We cannot get lost in grief. You watch a child wail in grief and be fine a few minutes later. It is like that too when we can return to our healthy feeling state. It is depression we should fear, getting stuck in grief is to be stuck in depression…that takes us out of life. It is not the same thing as grief.
It is how to grieve, what to grieve, when…where…how and why we can explore and talk about. For, as Jung says, there is no coming to awakening without pain…that pain is grief, the layers of fog melting away and revealing the soul’s true nature. It is resurrecting the feminine. It is resurrecting the soul and reclaiming the heart’s place in this world so desperate for more heart and soul.
Dr. Nandi Hetenyi