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Spirituality

A Cure for Depression

Bahai Writings | Dec 3, 2012

The views expressed in our content reflect individual perspectives and do not represent the official views of the Baha'i Faith.

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Bahai Writings | Dec 3, 2012

The views expressed in our content reflect individual perspectives and do not represent the official views of the Baha'i Faith.

Be not the slave of your moods, but their master. But if you are so angry, so depressed and so sore that your spirit cannot find deliverance and peace even in prayer, then quickly go and give some pleasure to someone lowly or sorrowful, or to a guilty or innocent sufferer! Sacrifice yourself, your talent, your time, your rest to another, to one who has to bear a heavier load than you — and your unhappy mood will dissolve into a blessed, contented submission to God.

Abdu’l-Baha (Star of the West)

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Comments

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  • Angela EB
    May 3, 2020
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    I think we have to be very careful with this quote as it pertains to clinical depression. Many people who give of their time and talents all day and into the night become increasingly depressed (therapists, first responders, nurses, social workers, etc.). I think it is important to note that while the "blues" might be cured by service, actual clinical depression can be exacerbated by the notion that service is the cure as it is ofen the failure to be able to offer the same compassion to yourself that you offer to others that is, at least in ...part, the root of depression.
    Read more...
    • Caitlin Johnson Castelaz
      May 27, 2020
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      Hard agree on the word of caution. I think it can be hard for those who do not experience or study clinical depression or mood disorders to understand why prayer and service may not be enough for others to lift the burden of mental illness. Seeking the counsel of a qualified doctor is also part of the Baha'i guidance on living a healthy life, and I hope that through compassion we can protect folks from feeling shame and despair if a life of service does not dispell the clouds. This is hard stuff.
    • Raia Kousary
      May 22, 2020
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      Agreed and also careful with the autenticity of this quote given that its in Star of the West. It is at best a pilgrim note (and I have just seen the passage below from the research department comfirming this).
  • Kyra Cash
    Apr 16, 2018
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    "The Research Department has found that these words were attributed to Abdu’l-Baha in an unpublished English translation of notes in German by Dr. Josephine Fallscheer taken on 5 August 1910. As the statement is a pilgrim note, it cannot be authenticated."
  • Tyler Harding
    Jan 16, 2016
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    I have been unable to find this in Ocean or in Sifter-Star of the West. Great quote! Thanks
  • E.E. Talisman
    Mar 10, 2013
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    I'm also having trouble finding a source for this quote. It's been quoted by bloggers and unofficial Baha'i sites so often that I think it's necessary we find out where it's from!
  • Pace9
    Jan 6, 2013
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    I could not verify the authenticity of this quote on "Ocean" or another Baha'i search engine. Can you please let me know where exactly this quote came from? Thanks.
  • Cyrus
    Dec 4, 2012
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    What a beautiful idea.. if i'm understanding correctly: the more we focus on other peoples' happiness, the happier we become.
    • Raia Kousary
      May 22, 2020
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      Shoghi effendi slaos says "The key to self mastery is self forgtefulness" but I thinkw e mneed to be aware that clinical depression is a medical issue and as such often needs medical tretament not just go and help your neighbour and you wont feel suicidal anymore.
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