What causes depression?

When thinking about the cause of depression it is useful to see us as more than just a mere machine. Modern medicine does tend to think of human beings in such a way. For example, seeing the kidneys as operating like a swimming pool filter, the heart as operating like a pump to carry the water to the filter and back into the pool. I guess the lungs are like an ozone generator!

This suits the modern approach to creating specialties, like orthopaedic surgeons to deal with the bones, ligaments and tendons of the body, and subspecialties, like hand surgeons who only deal with bones, ligaments and tendons of the hands. At least to my knowledge, we don’t have left-hand surgeons and right-hand surgeons…yet!

This approach might work well with surgery as a surgeon can become more expert at a particular procedure. But I don’t think this approach is useful for a large percentage of human illness.

Mind, Body and Spirit

With depression and mental illness in general, it is much better to see human beings as entities of mind, body and spirit. Yet even here we have a division: psychologists and psychiatrists to look after the mind; doctors to look after the body; and priests and the clergy to look after the spirit.

Over the next few posts we will give consideration to all three of these aspects in looking for the cause of depression.