Home > Classic/Ancient Writers, Depression > Ancient Words to Describe Depression

Ancient Words to Describe Depression

“My eye has grown dim from grief (depression), it grows weak because of all my foes,” (Job 17:7, emphasis added)

“My grief (depression) is beyond healing, my heart is sick within me” (Jeremiah 8:18, emphasis added).

The early Church Fathers called depression dejection.  St. John Cassian described dejection this way:  obscuring the soul, keeping it from good works, preventing it from praying and reading, the inability to be gentle and compassionate toward our brethren, instilling hatred of work, undermining resolutions and persistence, and captivity to despairing thoughts. The contemporary scientific criteria that describe depression include: feeling sad or empty, diminished interest or pleasure, agitation, energy loss, and inability to think.

“Wistful Dejection,” Benjamin Victor Kelley

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