Accordingly a religious life is a shield from depression. Since someone who is hit with depression is considered to be living a bad life, while the holy Quran declares that by having righteousness you will be rewarded by a good life.
Two things must be kept in mind:
1. What is meant by being religious, is not only relating to or believing in a religion, but to act upon what your religion teaches.
2. What is meant by depression is the sickness that is more than sadness or grief. A feeling that makes you feel useless and makes you want to commit suicide. Like how Psychiatrists define it “a mental condition characterized by feelings of severe despondency and dejection, typically also with feelings of inadequacy and guilt, often accompanied by lack of energy and disturbance of appetite and sleep.” Because sadness is something that happens to all humans even the infallible figures (pbut), So sadness and grief are not considered depression and we will talk in different articles about sadness and grief.
So how do we prove what the Quran is clamming?
To do so we must know that doing righteousness is not only to Pray, Fast, and give to charity. Its more than just actions it’s also how you view and react on things mentally and spiritually.
There are so many examples of good actions or reactions that can prevent depression, so here are the main two:
- Believing with certainty and positivism in Allah’s (swt) justice. Being in this status of believe –true certainty- means that you believe that there is a day of judgment in which the person who abused you will be judged if he doesn’t get judged in this world, you believe that your chaos in life is just temporary, and you believe in a goal in your life that makes you a complete human and servant of Allah that makes you determined. In summary if you have certainty any problem that causes depression is handled because in your views your problems will be solved 100%. Imam Ali (pbuh) stated “Throw away the incoming sadness with patience and certainty”2
- Waking up certainty and believes with the remembrance of Allah. Sometimes a religious person has certainty, yet because of how heavy the catastrophe is he forgets. That is why Islam impels reciting specific words, to keep the meaning of the words in the reciters mind, and as a reminder what Islam wants is not to recite the words only but to understand their meanings and live upon the meanings. “And We will surely test you with something of fear and hunger and a loss of wealth and lives and fruits, but give good tidings to the patient, Who, when disaster strikes them, say, "Indeed we belong to Allah, and indeed to Him we will return. Those are the ones upon whom are blessings from their Lord and mercy. And it is those who are the [rightly] guided.” 3
1. Al-Nahl 97 (Translator Ali Yousef)
2. Bihar Al-Anwar v74 p230
3. Al-Baqarah 155-157 (Translator Ali Yousef)