Hi, relatives of mine have hinted that I may be clinically depressed and suggest I get treatment for it. I am hesitant because I don’t like the idea of taking antidepressants, as they feel unnatural to me; what is your take- do they do more harm than good? Also, do you have any other natural suggestions? I have been meditating for a while but apparently the issue is quite deep. Thanks.

—Rush, USA


Dear Rush,

Thank you for your question. Depression can be a serious issue, especially if a person feels suicidal, in which case it would be best to seek immediate treatment and counseling. You could then also implement some of the ideas I will suggest below, alongside your treatment plan.

However, the tone of your question does not suggest that level of depression, so I will suggest several helpful tips that are simple, but also very powerful and life-changing.

  1. First, please us this powerful healing affirmation, as it has an immediate energizing and uplifting effect on those who use it, for it awakens the healing willpower within you: A Healing Prayer Affirmation by Paramhansa Yogananda
  2. Please also learn these Superconscious Living ExercisesBy Swami Kriyananda. They only take about 1-2 minutes to complete, and they get your day started on the right foot. In fact, when you are facing possible depression, get up right away when you wake up in the morning. Don’t lie around in bed, just hope right up and do these exercises.
  3. Try to get to be early enough so that you can hop out of bed, as suggested in #2
  4. Limit how much time you spend online, especially in the evenings, as this can make it hard to get proper rest. There is even something about the light of the computer screen itself that is very stimulating to the brain. In addition, many people got depressed (not necessarily clinically) over the election on cycle. If this pertains to you, then please go on a “non-worry fast.” Don’t worry, be happy. Make a point of it. This can also pertain to any and all news that depresses you.
  5. In the morning, if you can, exercise outdoors get some fresh air and sunshine. Be like a puppy who loves to run out the door to play.
  6. Improve your diet, such as getting fresh fruits and vegetables.
  7. Artificial sweeteners, such as aspartame, can cause serious depression in some people. It is best to avoid it.
  8. Heal the gut to help heal the mind. One of the simplest ways to do this is to eat home- made yogurt. There is a lot written on this topic, but this would be a good place to start.
  9. Cod liver oil can also help to heal depression. Even though Yogananda promoted a vegetarian diet, he did recommend cod liver oil for those who might need it for one reason or another. Icelanders are noted to be one of the happiest populations on earth, and it is very cold and dark up there much of the year. I am sure other factors are involved, but maybe the cod liver oil plays a part in their brain health.
  10. And finally, watch this video that teaches an introduction to meditation Even a short session in the morning and/or night can help to change your daily outlook.

It looks like a lot, but the changes, above, don’t really take too much time.

I have one final suggestion to implement if you choose to do so. Read up on it first. You might consider taking bee pollen, unless you are allergic to bees. I have been taking it for decades and I love it. Start with only a little bit each day and gradually, over three weeks, work up to one teaspoon a day. If you have seasonal allergies, please skip this idea, or try it very slowly, taking only TINY amounts and watching for any reaction. Stop if there is even a hint of a reaction. Most people don’t have a reaction, but I want you to be cautious, just to be safe.

So, finally, in closing, you owe it to yourself to try the list of my suggestions 1-9. Your relatives have hinted that you might be depressed. You owe it to yourself to become proactive to create positive and joyful effects in your body, mind and soul.

Please keep in touch. I also encourage you to request healing prayers, as needed. We are here to help.

Mary Kretzmann
Ananda Healing Prayer Ministry