“In many shamantic societies, if you came to a medicine person complaining of being disheartened, dispirited, or depressed, they would ask one of four questions: ‘When did you stop dancing? When did you stop singing? When did you stop being enchanted by stories? When did you stop being comforted by the sweet territory of silence?'” – Gabrielle Roth
It’s certainly natural to feel disheartened from time to time, but too often the remedy that people seek is in a bottle — whether alcohol or drugs or medication — instead of following the advice of a wise shaman, sensitive clergy, helpful therapist or caring friend to seek and promote healing within ourselves.
When did you stop singing?
Not always, but frequently the best way to dispel our inner demons is not to run away but to live more deeply: to dance, to sing, to read (my personal favorite), and to surround ourselves with silence. Our bodies naturally seem to want to follow this path, but our minds often block it with guilt, fear, and shame.
Of course serious depression needs serious intervention from a professional. But if you’re feeling a little low, a little too worried or overburdened, I encourage you to follow this ancient prescription for happiness and health: dance, sing, read (and listen), find harbors of silence.
Give yourself time and permission. Let your spirit rise.