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Do You Agree With Robert Burton Anatomy of Meloncholy-are Humans born Depressed ?

Discussion in 'Philosophical Forum' started by Cthulhu-versailles, Sep 8, 2005.

  1. Cthulhu-versailles The Luckiest Man in Agrabah

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    We just started going over Robert Burton Anatomy of Meloncholy in class.. OMG this Tome is wicked. Anyway in this book he basically goes on and on contradicting himself however, keeps his focus on the prospect that every single thing on this planet, well at least humans; are afflicted with meloncholy.

    In the book, which I have yet to read a lot of, apparently he gives causes and cures for meloncholy. The thing is though, that the facts he present aren't really consise and are anything but brief. His knowledge is obviously scholarly and leans towards the philosophical spectrum but at the same time he does apply knowledge from the psycological, economical and the medical disciplines.

    -We are all at some point suffering from meloncholy this is an apparent fact and I doubt anyone would argue otherwise. However are we eternally damned to suffer meloncholy unconditionally without break or pause and is every single action we do actually meant as a way to circumvent the mirth ?

    IS EVERY SINGLE ACTIONS EVERY HUMAN DOES ACTUALLY A WAY TO BUSY THEMSELVES TO AVOID DEPRESSION AND FACING THE DESPAIR AND GRIVANCES OF ARE OWN MINDS ?

    Or is even thinking such a thing an unbenounced cry for help from a hermit in denial of his own contempt of knowlegde.

    Keep in mind Burton anatomy of meloncholy spans many more avenues then I have presented however, I have neither the will or knowledge to say more- all I can say is yes we are all actually born depressed and all paths we take all non volutary actions we seek are only meant to belay that depression.

    ..If this post seem irelavant then.. lol it probably is... but I just read some of Burtons book and I was like Oh Shit this is deep stuff man and I have been playing it over in my head is it possible that when something comes to life- being in it first stages is it not unreasonably for that thing to be at the lowest level of cognitive functions.

    Seriosuly think about, This view of his could explain why in fact babies are born as completly ignorant beings, with base needs and signs of communication- which are always expreienced in a the reprehensive from of crying. OMg and then as the babay grows older it is subjected to leanred men and womens beliefs, and serves only as a pwn without a real purpose IE like a depressed person. The babay follows along whatever path is given and in the end regardless of what it has been taught- in how to perceive hapiness the babay/human will decay and wither and bring further sadness to those as it dies.

    OMG ROBERT BURTON HAS BECOME MY 7TH FAVORITE AUTHOR
     
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  2. Stormy Banned

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    Yeah alot of what he says is true, in general most people have a hole that they try to fill with various things. And alot of the time it seems difficult to escape sadness, or melancholy. (too bad no one else has posted, this is an interesting thread.)
     
  3. Nybarius Ennui Bores Me

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    Wow, great book, I'm surprised to hear anyone on here has heard of it. Rep for you on general principle. He was a great scholar; great book to crib obscure references from.

    To answer your question: no, I disagree with him. Depression is defined with reference to the normative state of non-depression, and thus if he were correct the term would need to be re-defined.
     
  4. Near Seeker of Truth

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    Well I am biased but, I am going to have to no, and I dont really feel like explaining why, but I do have my reasons.
     
  5. Stormy Banned

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    Well, i guess i dont have much to say so...

    :smile-big BONG TIME!:smile-big
     
  6. abstract aware wolf

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    *ridiculous bump*

    I found this thread interesting, and I really want to check this book out.

    Honestly, this theory seems too far fetched to be true, in my opinion at least. But the thought has never entered my head, so I don't really know quite what to think of it. I'll go get the book and think it over, but in the mean time-

    anybody else have any thoughts?
     
  7. Jello Biafra The Golden Path

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    I think he's putting the cart before the horse. As social animals, humans find self-actualization through relationships. Without them, we go insane. And as intelligent animals, we get bored easily. From boredom comes depression. Ergo, we need to occupy ourselves with something (preferably that which we can find enjoyment in) or else we will become depressed, and probably insane.
     
  8. abstract aware wolf

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    While it is true that we are indeed very social animals, we are also very complex. Our emotions are far, far more developed than any other species. This in conjunction with the fact that our brains can plain and simply process an amazing amount of information-has been known to cause some very amazing, and some not so amazing things. The amazing being art etc. etc.

    The not so amazing being instability. Humans suffer from a ton of mental illnesses that no other species suffers from.

    Like I said, I haven't made up my mind on the subject yet-and you brought up some extremely valid points.

    I'm trying to think back on developmental psych to think about what could possibly support the claim that humans are born depressed, but my memory for this sort of thing isn't as good as it used to be. Your argument is sound, but I'd also like to see exactly what this authors claims were.


    Amazon.com can be your best friend:amuse
     
  9. Jello Biafra The Golden Path

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    Well it's certainly true that we have orders of magnitude greater incidence of mental illness than other animals. From a functional level, it's very easy to understand why this happens. Our brains are much more complex. The structures are more developed, and there are many more neurons than even our closest genetic relatives.

    As any engineer can tell you, with greater complexity comes a greater potential for something to go wrong. What the minutae of what causes those problems greatly varies, but at the root it happens simply because there is more to go wrong.

    I'd like to be able to check out that book as well, but right now I'm a bit strapped for cash, so I'm only going off the OP's impressions as well. But my healthy skepticism and basic understanding of psychology tells me that either the OP is being a bit too general about the author's assertions, or the author was too reductionist in his thinking.
     
  10. parker pyne and my grizzly bear face

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    He sounds very much like schopenhauer, who believed that happiness is the absence of pain; that we are in a constant state of suffering. He also believed we should occupy ourselves to distract us... from ourselves :hoho

    Also note that happiness is largely dependent on your genes. I surmise Burton was probably a sullen fellow suffering a constant state of ennui, therefore his views on depression are slightly more hyperbolic than that of an average person. He's also employing the excluded middle, by stating that we are either depressed or blissfully busy, in which he omits the bridge between the two.


    I don't get this idea. Can someone explain it in simpler terms? ;_;
     
  11. abstract aware wolf

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    from what I can get from it, it seems like he's saying that this is why it makes sense:


    Baby's always cry, and are incredibly helpless creatures that always need attention.







    But every infant no matter what the species is like this-it's just because of their underdeveloped minds.

    And the second half just seems like a bunch of rambling nonsense:lmao
     
  12. raisin-gun PIMPIN

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    I think we are born infinite but then our senses and world start to limit our reality
     
  13. Logerond Member

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    I don't think we are born melancholic, but instead are taught to be so, if we are no use to the society. So, I don't think we are depressed by nature, but get so by feeling useless if we do nothing, as we then will be looked down upon by the society we are apart of.
     
  14. Jagon Fox Bad-Ass Uke Girl!

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    i disagree with him, we are not born melancholy that's a blanket statement, it's how the individual chooses to look at and handle the situations in their lives.
     
  15. fantzipants Active Member

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    same here :)
     
  16. shirish アヂィ

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    Awesome book I think. If anyone wants to read it online, it's available for free too.



    And yeah I do agree that a more apathetic and ignorant version of melancholy is what human being character originally is. And that's why we strive to fall iout of it.
     
  17. Xion 終わり

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    No.

    I believe the accumulation of our experiences, our psychological makeup, and our various beliefs make us into what we are.

    Doesn't stop me from getting sad at times...but I am able to put that behind me very quickly with some meditation and or awareness training. :p
     
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