There are two underlying sources of depression: existential and physiological. An existential depression comes from the discrepancy between the way your life is and the way you would like it to be. The reason why this causes depression is because it denies you volition, your human nature to make choices.
A physiological depression is caused by an imbalance of body chemistry. You feel depressed because your body is not getting enough or not being receptive to the substances which allow you a feeling of well-being.
Sometimes it is the case that an existential depression is caused by a physiological depression. You may feel depressed that you do not have a lot of friends, which may be because you have social anxiety. It would behoove you to address the social anxiety in order to make more friends. This is just one example, not the only one though.
Other times, a physiological depression can be caused by an existential depression. The stress of losing a job could wreak havoc on your body chemistry and actually start affecting you physically.
Whether a depression was originally existential or physiological, after awhile it will become both. It is at this point that the depression catches hold in a vicious cycle. The point I am trying to make here is this:
The physiological is an undeniable part of depression.
Knowing this will give you the power to address it. You may be able to stop the depression at the source, or at least mitigate its effects on you. Either way, you deserve to feel better.
Everyone’s physiology is different, so there’s no one right answer for every person’s depression. But I’d be happy to help you find any nutrient deficiencies you may have. Or, if you want to take the initiative, here are a few nutrients good for overall well-being: Vitamin B12, tryptophan along with niacin, more fiber, less carbs. I recommend the website Livestrong.com. I’ve found all sorts of helpful items there.
Charles W. Baird
Professor of Economics Emeritus
California State University at East Bay
Start with the concept of free will, that individuals have the power to make their own choices. Then acknowledge the fact that individuals do not always have the power to make all their choices. A person, given the choice, would surely choose to be happy and free over being unhappy and fated. But since individuals are not always happy and free, it is apparent that they do not always have a choice in the matter, ie do not always have free will. Here, Volitionism recognizes this fact and reasserts free will by addressing the factor preventing the individual from choosing happiness and freedom. By CHOOSING to address the factor limiting freedom.
Example 1: An individual is depressed. It is unlikely that the individual chooses to be depressed, because, given the choice, he would be happy. So he must have no choice in the matter. But, he can find out what is making him depressed, like maybe a lack of B vitamins, and address it. In this way, he ultimately does have the power to be happy.