Involvement in devotion did not help to cure my depression. What to do?
A girl devotee (Name hidden) asked like this:
“Hare Krishna Prabhuji. PAMHO. I have a very peculiar yet serious problem. I have extreme laziness and depression issues since the past 15 years. I tried many solutions, nothing helps. It’s going worse by the day maybe due to lack of mind control. I’ve always surrendered my life to Krishna and beg him to help me come out of this. But why is it that nothing helps? I’m suffering a lot. Is it my karma? What should I do? My family is suffering because of this too. Please help.”
A KIND NOTE: I have replied about depression in both of our sites three times already. Same devotee asked in two different names expecting more and more from me and I still helped that devotee. Now, another question on depression. I hope that this is not that previous devotee herself. If so, please understand that I myself am replying with some health issues for time being and hence please do not consume my time excessively and allow me to serve all the devotees. So, I will not reply about depression again. And, I take this for reply because she has said that her following devotion did not help in getting relieved from depression. Moreover, if a devotee reads the Page “LINKS OF ALL POSTS” in sites, they can find their desired topic if it had been already replied. You can ask after confirming that your topic is not there.
You say that you followed devotion and you did not get any relief from devotion.
Do you know what is the meaning of following devotion?
(1) ENTRUST YOURSELF TO KRISHNA
The actual and advanced form of devotion is to entrust ourselves to Krishna and live with a hope that Krishna will protect us in all situations.
In the mean time, we can pray to Krishna to keep us in His hands and help us to cross the reactions of karma successfully.
Usually, we need not ask Krishna anything because He knows our needs. However, a devotee can’t think any other person except Krishna whenever he is in a testing situation. Therefore, though we need not ask anything from Krishna, since He is our only asylum, we can pray for some big prayers if we find the pains very difficult to bear. Not wrong. Who else can we depend on?
So, think of Krishna both in happiness and distress. This is a balanced approach.
But, asking Krishna for making the bus or train delayed because of your delay to come to the bus station (or) to cure your today’s head ache , etc, are too much.
Such a balanced mind will help us to avoid depression of mind.
Depression comes only when we feel that we have no protection. But, if we surrender to the Lord and depend on Him for all our needs, we need not fall in the depression of mind.
(2) DO NOT EXPECT ONLY A PARTICULAR RESULT
This is also a cause for depression. Krishna Himself says that expectation and attachment is the cause for one’s fall down in his life.
If you expect only a particular way of happenings in your life, you will end up in disappointment some times.
How is it possible to expect only a particular way of turns in our life?
Our life is controlled by our karma account and every turn of events happens as fixed by our karma, ie, based on our activities recorded from our previous births.
So, we should have a maturity to convince ourselves that we alone are the cause for all our happiness and miseries.
Instead of taking so, we are blaming others for all our miseries.
Pray like this to Krishna in any problematic situation:
“Krishna! I know that I alone am the cause for my present problems. I only smoked and invited this heart attack. I only have to bear this pain. However, now, I have realized my mistake. So, please give me another chance to lead a disciplined life. I will lead a very responsible life.”
This is a genuine prayer. Accepting our mistakes and praying for betterment is good. If possible, Krishna too will consider giving you another chance to lead a peaceful life appreciating your reformation.
In general, once you realize your past mistakes, that moment is considered as your new birth. So, your problems will automatically reduce once you start to feel for the past mistakes and resolve not to repeat them.
Lord too does not hesitate to do good for a devotee who resolves to lead a disciplined and devotional life. He expects only our reformation. Not money, offerings, etc.
Thus, you should avoid expecting a particular way of life alone and getting depressed. You should be ready to face any event as unavoidable and as per our karma.
Such a matured mindset is that of a matured devotee.
Follow chanting as much as possible. But, do not get depressed in case you are unable to chant sufficiently on any day. Compensate it on a day in which you have more time.
Try your best to take only the prasadam. In case you happen to take from outside on any day because of unavoidable situation, do not feel guilt and eat that food after praying to Krishna.
In case you are unable to go to the temple any Sunday, do not get tensed as if you missed Krishna Himself by missing that sunday. Go on the next Sunday and take part eagerly.
Thus, NOT TAKING EVERYTHING TO THE BRAIN WILL HELP YOU NOT AFFECTED WITH THE DEPRESSION.
Take the happenings as the reactions of karma. Depend on Krishna for all your needs and believe that He is doing only good for you though you face pains in life.
This is the mindset of a matured devotee. Only if you follow such a maturity, you can escape from depression.
Now evaluate yourself: Were you following such a matured mindset and devotion?