Monday, December 15, 2008
Curious, isn't it, that depression is the word for both economic collapse and nervous breakdown. Of the latter, they say that depression is a three-part disease: Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's. Our bad luck this year is that the economic and emotional letdowns have arrived together, perfectly timed for an epidemic of the solstice blues, which are sometimes diagnosed as seasonal affective disorder. Poignantly known as SAD, that condition is directly tied to the absence of light, and the provision of light is its treatment. But perhaps darkness is less the source of our anguish than the medium in which it is most painfully felt. Memory and expectation define the days of December - nostalgia for holidays of yore, the letter to Santa - because the past and the future are the unpolluted zones of consciousness. The present is always less than we imagine it could be, and that aspect of awareness most profoundly shapes the human condition.
Or awaiting another king during the dark time of the year. So much expectation.