youtube playlist: https://youtu.be/01Kt27FY4_4?list=PL3974D8E77F53021E
Failure to identify and treat the true causes of depression has resulted in an overreliance on drugs and an underutilization of methods that heal it from its source. Pharmaceutical drugs do play an important role in helping to manage the symptoms of mental ill health, including anxiety disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and depression. For example, in cases of very severe depression, antidepressants help to restore enough emotional balance so that people can benefit from other forms of treatment such as mindfulness-based cognitive-behavioral therapy. But since mental disorders, as I have defined them, in contrast to neurological disorders, are primarily caused by subjective, psychological factors rather than objective, biological ones, we must turn to first-person experience to identify their true causes.
There is a wonderful complementarity between the rigorous third-person methodologies of modern science and the rigorous first-person methodologies of Buddhism and other contemplative traditions. For the first time in human history we have ready access to both systems of inquiry, each with its own strengths and limitations. Given the reality of suffering and its sources, and humanity’s urgent need to find relief from mental disorders, it is imperative to put aside ideological and methodological prejudices, both scientific and religious. We now have the opportunity to integrate contemplative and scientific methods of inquiry to provide a comprehensive understanding of human existence that fully embraces both the subjective and objective aspects of the natural world, without reducing either one to the other. This approach holds great promise for healing the afflictions of the modern world.