The Price Of Modern Life Is Depression And Loneliness Panel, Festival of Dangerous Ideas 2014

The Price Of Modern Life Is Depression And Loneliness Panel, Festival of Dangerous Ideas 2014


[ Music ]>>Good afternoon everyone. [ Applause ] I am Ann Mossop from
the Sydney Opera House and it’s my great pleasure to
welcome you here this afternoon to our session in the
Festival of Dangerous Ideas, The Price of Modern Life is
Depression and Loneliness. Now, as you would know
when we are thinking about the festival
we’re thinking about interesting ideas,
interesting speakers. And when I came up with the idea that I thought this
was something people that we need to talk about. The reaction from my colleagues
was underwhelming so we say. So personally I was thrilled
that you’re all so enthusiastic about this rather, you know,
depressing potentially topics. And it’s always really
interesting to find out when there are issues, things that really
resonate with audiences. We can have a discussion here
about these important ideas and we will time at the end
of the session for questions and discussion from you. There are two microphones
in the auditorium and then at a certain point
I’ll ask you to hop-up if you have a question. Let me introduce our speakers. Anne Manne is an Australian
writer and social commentator. She is the author of
Motherhood an order by a memoir, so this is life, and most
recently The Life of I, The New Culture of Narcissism. She is also the author
of a wonderful essay that was published in The
Monthly a few years ago, Only Connect Loneliness
in the Age of freedom, which I would encourage you
all to read if you haven’t in that it’s a wonderful
introduction to that topic. David Baker is the
Director of Research at the Australia Institute where his focus includes
the social outcomes of government policy. He is the author of an important
2012 report on loneliness, All The Lonely People. Gordon Parker on my left is the
Scientia Professor of Psychiatry at the University
of New South Wales. He is a researcher
into mental health in particularly mood disorders like depression and
bipolar disorder. Many of you would have heard
of him as the founding director of the Black Dog
Institute and in that capacity he’s had a
major role in I think changing on the way we think and
talk about depression in these kinds of concept forum. He’s also the author of the autobiographical
A Piece of My Mind. Before we start our discussion,
I just want to read you– I’ve got a couple of quotes
from Anne’s essay on loneliness which I thought wanted
to share with you. The first one is, “A friend
once said something to me that stopped me in my tracks. It was this. The vices and virtues of
each age are entangled with one another. It’s not always possible to
have one without the other.” So, we’re going to have
a conversation today about the time we live in,
about depression and loneliness and try and unpick
some of the ways in which these are
connected or not. We’re going to start
by really trying to define a little bit
what we’re talking about. We, I think those of us who
are like me and like many of you are not professionals in
this field rely on what we read in report ads or in other
issues to get a sense of what’s happening
in some of these areas and what we’ve seen consistently
is from news from the research and writing of paper like
these is that the incidents of depression is on
the rise, the incidents of loneliness is alarming. We understand terrible stories
like people who have died and have not been discovered
for several days afterwards. And what I really want to do
by drawing on the expertise of our panel is examine some of
those assumptions that we make, and some of those assumptions
that I’ve certainly made and thinking about this session which is are these huge
problems, are these problems that are increasing,
are these things that we really need
to deal with now. And I want to start by asking
Gordon Parker to talk to us about what the situation is,
how he sees the situation in Australia in relation to
the incidents of depression.>>The first thing
I think is to say that depression is a
very encompassing word and it encompasses
normal depression. We all get depressed so one
say is we did a study in said to people, do you have times
when you feel depressed, your self-esteem drops,
you’re self-critical and you feel like giving up. And 96% of people said yes. So there’s normal depression and then we have so-called
clinical depression. And in response to
your question, it’s clear that there have been
increasing reporting of rates of depression going higher
and higher and higher. And there’s no doubt
that the rates when they’re formally
measured have been going high particularly in the
last 20 or 30 years. In relation to clinical
depression, first thing we don’t know
really how to define it. We have some loose
parameters, it’s more severe, it’s more persistent, it’s more
likely to cause people to want to seek help but we don’t
have any pristine definition. And what has happened is the
American Psychiatry DSM system has since 1980 progressively
lowered and lowered and lowered the threshold
from meeting criteria for clinical depression. So the first issue in
response to the question, I would says this that
instead of looking as if there’s a true increase in depression what we’ve had is
a new definition of depression that has brought in so much
normative or normal depression into the clinical domain. And that has been a consequence
of many, many factors, one for instance would
be advocate scenario one who expand their territory, pharmaceutical industries
perhaps wanting to expand their territory
and so on and so forth. Secondly, I think there are some
other factors that are relevant. Now to sort of try and
wrap it up pretty quickly, de-stigmatisation
has made many people who have had serious depression in the past would
never have talked about it not that
far more openly. And I think that there’s
probably a third minor factor that there may have
been an increase in some clinical disorders,
so one that I think stands out is bipolar II disorder
which is always been with us but with the lifetime
prevalence was pretty low but is now up to about 6%. And then the final thing I would
say in reply to the question is that we have as I suggested
earlier great difficulty in distinguishing between
clinical depression, normal depression, despondency,
demoralisation on we or I’m afraid I call the Henry’s
and a couple of other states. And so we have to be
very careful and specific about what we’re
actually talking about, whether it’s clinical
or normative depression.>>So if we’re talking
about clinical depression, so if we are, you know, in this
conversation we’re saying we’re not really talking
about people– the kind of sadness called– caused by sad things
that happened in life. But if we’re talking
about clinical depression, what do you think the
incident is increasing?>>I’m not persuaded that it is. We can go back to Saint
Paul to the Corinthians who describe the
depressions came from God because they just couldn’t
be understood otherwise. And these were the biological
depressions and the rates of what we now logic these
melancholic depression look as though they have
probably been pretty similar over the centuries. And then we have if you like environmentally
caused depressions. And again in Western
counties there’s really little to support a great increase. Again as I said earlier
it’s mainly the way in which the definitions
have dropped lower and lower and lower to become in
fact quite nonsensical. For instance DSM-5 was
proposing a new category where it just needed two minor
it would called mixed anxiety depression, wonderful acronym
which comes out as MADD. [ Laughter ] And if you look at
the first condition in DSM-5 it’s a new condition in the depressive disorders
it’s called disruptive mood dysregulation disorder. You say depressive
disorder but none of the criteria actually
mention the word depression. You basically have
regular temper tantrums. So we’ve got some very
bazaar conditions included in the clinical depressive
domain. So, most of it I think is
out effect of poor definition and as a consequence of their
poor definition that leads to something not
in your question but which worries me immensely if in fact depression
has been homogenised into there is clinical
depression. The consequences
are that people end up getting the treatment
that’s loudly shaped by the background training
or discipline rather than any specific to the
constituent depressive disorder. And that’s been another
dreadful consequence over the last three
decades of just talking about clinical depression
is if it is an entity, some sort of homogeneous
condition. In there say major depression,
they have minor as well. Major depression if you broke it up into 319 constituent
disorders. Who does that and who
would want to do that?>>So if we look
at that question that you’re concerned d about,
the treatment then relating not to the person’s condition but to the background
of the practitioner. So by that for example
if somebody diagnosed with some kind of depression if
they’re seeing a psychiatrist, they’ll have one
kind of treatment but the same patient
potentially if they went to see as a psychotherapist or a psychologist would
then presumably be looking at some kind of talking therapy?>>Yup.>>Yes. So regardless of
what they might have needed if they received a more
sophisticated diagnosis.>>Since 1980, major depression
has taken over the territory. So, so many people go and see
somebody they told you got major depression. I think well that’s
very informative, that’s very profound. But imagine if you went to
your GP and you were told that you had major
breathlessness. You would think, “I don’t
really understand that.” What you’d expect of your
GP would be that it’s, A, you’ve got asthma or
pneumonia or pulmonary embolism and you then know that
the treatment would be more rational. So you might get an antibody or
you might get a bronchodilator if it was asthma
or anticoagulant if it was pulmonary embolism. And what we have is this very
dumb homogenising model you have made to depression and
then with whatever it is, major or minor depression,
you go and see a doctor or most certainly
you’ll get a drug. You go to see a psychologist
with the same type of depression you’ll almost
certainly get a psychotherapy. You go to see a counselling
you almost certainly get like a counselling. You go to see a lady
wearing a caftan and you’ll get crystal therapy. [ Laughter ] And basically, we’ve got
this really dumb model where that aphorism that if
all you’ve got is a hammer then everything looks like a nail. It is operating to high degree. And this is what really
concerns me about the management of depression these days. For instance, if a woman has
a breast lump she doesn’t want to know whether it’s
major or minor, she wants to know whether
it’s malignant or benign, and she wants to
know the treatment. Whether it’s going to be
surgery or radio therapy and we have got this
completely different model where the diagnosis
is imprecise, the actual treatment
is illogical and shaped by the background,
discipline and training. And you could imagine if you got
a nonspecific diagnostic model, nonspecific treatment,
then the risks are huge. You got lots of people
given loads of medications which are inappropriate when
they’re doing much better with psychotherapy
or counselling and conversely you got people with desperately severe
biological disorders who would do well with
medication and have years of sitting next to a
therapist who just meandrous and meandrous very
nicely perhaps but without any great effect.>>We’ll come a little bit
later in the conversation to what we need to do
and also perhaps to some of those other things about
our lives that might lead us or predispose us to
varius different kinds of– well I’m very hesitant to
use the word depression now without any qualify but
varius forms of the D word. But before we move further
into the conversation, what do you think the
effect is on individuals of this extensive use
of major depression? You know in the sense
that people who may really be have
something that is not of– you know, not of that
level of significance or not really requiring
to be medicalized. What is the effect of
telling people you have this serious condition?>>I think it’s not quite
as severe as we might think. Most people actually
don’t go and seek help from a general practitioner
or a psychiatrist and this is something
pretty significant. There’s not enough to know that you just don’t go
along with minor worries. But the greater implication of concern is getting
inappropriate therapy. So it just very quickly I once
saw a very perfectionistic teacher being at a
school for 30 years and he was publicly
demeaned by the head master. He was put on an antidepressant by a GP then he had
four more works so over in three years later and he
had 23 different medications and a course of ACT, his
depression was no better and he had some memory
problems when the ACT. He would have been
in much better space if he’d been prescribed
an apology rather than antidepressants. [ Applause And Cheers ] So, the point I’m
making is that we have– if we’ve got a dumb model then
you risk a dumb application and we have– the
biggest concerns I have of inappropriate treatment
being either as I said earlier, over treatment with medication
when it’s not required or conversely people with
severe biological disorders who would do brilliantly on
medication and not getting it.>>Let’s leave on to
loneliness as we sit here in such a lovely
social environment. David, can you tell us about
the findings of your report, really what you know from that
research about the baseline of rates of loneliness,
kinds of loneliness and so on in Australia?>>Sure. The report relied on a
longitudinal study over 10 years which mean we could track
the same people each year and the questions they are
asked included 10 but went to the issue of social supports
including an explicit question, are you lonely? And the data showed
that in any given year 1 in 10 Australians experience
feeling of loneliness. So, in any one of these rows
there’s two or three people who are feeling lonely given
that we’re all here talking about loneliness and depression
it’s a skewed audience. But tracking it year by
year we found that over that 10 year period, 3 out of
10 Australians had experienced a period of loneliness that
they reported to the survey. Now the fact that it’s
influenced the democratic factors that showed up in that
research, showed that people who live on their own
were twice as likely to report being lonely. And, well that’s a key factor
and everyone picks up on it. It’s important to point out
that being alone isn’t the same as feeling lonely. And that might be something
we discussed further on. But it’s important to make
that distinction and especially when we come to try and understand the
causes of loneliness. The– It’s also demographic
factors around males and females. For males through
the life course, the rates of loneliness
increase as they get older, or the numbers of males who were
report feeling lonely increases. But for women the pattern
appeared more to be a U shape. So, you know, younger women
showed high rates of loneliness but then that decrease
overtime until around midlife when it started to increase
again towards older age.>>It was– I think it’s
very interesting some of those demographic factors
because some of the information that you found I find
slightly surprising. Which was the prevalence
of loneliness among men between their 20s and their
40s that, that was a– you know, that’s not a time
where we would, you know, with– you know, looking at it from
the outside that’s not a time where we would think of it. But that was something
that you found. And I think that was
potentially related to patterns of living alone but also
the different ways that men and women relate to
their social networks.>>Oh that’s the– I mean,
you can draw it as conclusions from the data but certainly
one of the key determinants of a change for men was
when they had children. And so– if they had
children, that their incidence of loneliness increased for
them and for women a decrease. And as your question
suggest Anne, is it that– but there are social
factors for that. You know, if you are– for women
who have children, there’s a lot of social structures out
there that they can access that it might be mother’s
groups or it’s preschools or there’s a number
of facilities where they’re meeting people in
the same situation as themselves and so there’s potentially
there’s a support network that they can draw on,
whereas for men, you know, if their social outreach
or outlets have been going to the pub or playing golf
or going to the football. If there’s an increase
in the demands on them at home then those possibilities for social interaction
are reduced.>>That was one of the absolutely fascinating
things was the prevalence of loneliness among people with
children, which those of us who live in houses that appear
to be stuffed with people of all ages you think, how
on earth could that happen. But, I mean, it’s interesting
to think of that in relation to the other determinant
like people living alone that can be correlate
with loneliness. So, the idea of people
in the middle of a family feeling lonely
is an interesting one.>>Well if you’re
at home with kids and as I am then adult
conversation is still adult conversation. And so if you’ve got kids or
you’re living on your own, you might be just as isolated.>>Yes. And the fate of single
parents was another thing. And can you tell us about
why you became interested in loneliness. I mean, I know that I
said that I refer to you about a few years ago. What made you stop
thinking about that issue?>>Well, actually
my mother was lonely and I’ve been her very central
support person through her life. So– and there’s something
about someone you care about deeply internalising
their feelings whether it’s– you know, you feel
it very intensely. So, I’ve always been kind
of sensitised [phonetic] to it I suppose and aware
of it and constantly trying to combat it in her life. But at that time that
I wrote the essay, I’d actually had a terrible
ankle injury and I was unable to walk for about six
months so I was on the couch at home still writing
articles and so on, but I didn’t see anyone. You know, as a matter of fact,
you were talking about known and it’s not being necessary
because you’re alone. And that’s true, I
didn’t feel lonely. But perhaps in my
unconscious I did because I had my
husband caring for me in a very tender kind of way. He was first entirely
just concerned but then it may not being
rushing around the household but then he really looked
after me in a lovely way. But I was really struck when I
spoke to a friend of mine about, you know, she rang into but. She immediately began gotten
from weeping and, you know, with hysteria over what
would happen to her if she had a broken ankle because there was no
one to look after her. And, you know, it
was– its like– you know, you prescribe
an apology. It was a real question because
she was lonely and she was, you know, so isolated. So that, you know, a
writer writes works in those ways I guess so
I began thinking about it. Could I just say about some
of the research which, I mean, I’ve looked your report not
recently but a little while back and I was really fascinated
about some of the things and you were noticing. But can I offer just– I’ll just
fly this, it may not be correct and Gordon can be come
in and be all precise and decide that it’s wrong but.>>You’ve got to have a
professor on every panel.>>Oh, I know, I know. But he’s a thought. Here are some thoughts. When we form attachments,
you know, to a young baby, to each other, they are amongst
the deepest and most wonderful but also destabilising
of human experiences. Freud [assumed spelling] said
in relation to falling in love that it makes us
humble and I love it. Because sudden why
are you humble? He said we’re actually thorn
part of our n narcissism when we fall in love but
the reason we’re humble is because we come close to loss. As soon as you love someone
you are vulnerable to loss of someone who I
really admire a lot, the writing of this
John Bowlby and he wrote about our attachment it
was a three volume trilogy, attachment, separation
and then loss. And so, these young men,
both his fathers but also through the ’20s, I think sort
of young women too I think one of the issues in the wider
society is we now have what I’d call, you know, there’s a
kind of free marker of love out there, there’s a free
market of bodies you might say and that you can move from
one relationship to another. There are a lot of sexual
relationships before you pick– find a committed partner
and maybe you never do. But in each one of those
endings there is loss and there is sadness and there
is something to be mourned. And there must be, and I
know there is because I speak to such people, a great
and greater anxiety that there will be nothing to
replace the last relationship. I remember– excuse me. This is my third session
today, so you have to put up with my croaky voice. I remember a teacher who
was deeply depressed. She’d had a relationship where she’d fallen
involve with someone. She’d had a number of
relationships that hadn’t worked out and this one
seemed to be, you know, the one that was going to work. It didn’t work. She described this experience of when she came home
holding it together of her classes, secondary
teacher. And sinking into the living room
in darkness and on to her knees and then, you know, collapsing. And she did this every night. She’d– Because this
unbearable reality, this crisis, meaning, she was facing. So, you know, when we’re talking
about loneliness, those men, they’re also going through I
think a lot of those experiences so I’d be very interested to
know how these serial, you know, the serial relationship
pattern, the uncommitted pattern which we sometimes gear up
and we’re not really looking at the vulnerable
underbelly of it. And as the parenting,
men often have the wife or partner as their best friend. Now, when that mother engages
so fully with the infant who have they lost but their
best friend in the sense that I’ve knowing men to
become quite depressed by her engagement and I know
this postnatal depression whims on. But apart from those social
structures that, you know, strangely enough he has
actually lost something. And is he able to really express
that and to go through that kind of mourning for what his had
at the same time– excuse me. This is your fault
Ann my croaky voice.>>I know. I know. Well, actually
it’s not my fault. It’s their fault [laughs]. But they were so
interested in narcissism that we could not deny them.>>And I would finally conclude,
speaking of narcissism– [ Laughter ] — because a therapist came
along to the Willie Centre and asked a brilliant question. And he said, “Look,
I have people landing on my couch all the time,
or chair as it knows, and they are depressed,”
you know. He said, “Actually, I don’t
think they’re depressed. In reality, they have
been at the receiving end when I hear their
life of a narcissist.” So if you’ve been, you
know, one way of putting it, is this mild kind of he called
it subclinical depression. The other way of putting
it is they’ve been at the receiving
end of an asshole. [ Laughter ]>>The common sense approach. So one thing that comes
out of your discussion like seeing what happens
to people in a series of uncommitted relationships
which really tells you that perhaps they’re
not actually– people are not actually able to
have uncommitted relationship in the sense that if
there is sadness and loss with the conclusion of each one,
the idea that people can have, you know, those kind
of relationships without commitment
or investment. It’s maybe not true.>>I think it’s tied to
the vices and virtues that all selling that.>>Yeah.>>Because, you know, in one
way do we want our member Tony Giddens the– Anthony Giddens
the great sociologist saying, well, you know, about
long-term marriage which sounds so desirable, you know, his aunt or whoever it was had been
married to her husband for 60 years and she was
miserable for everyone of them. [ Laughter ] — so that you– it is not– you don’t necessarily
have to idealise the past and particularly the
patriarchal past for women and being forced to
stay in marriages. But nonetheless you need to see,
you know, the vices of this age and you– a long with the
freedom to be able to walk away and to have relationships
and perhaps learn more about yourself in the
world but also, you know, I do think out there, there
is a pattern of narcissism in relationships with
people and not really caring for the other person and
people feel quite robbed of a certain sort of richness
they feel not cared for, they feel that the balance is
skewed towards the other person and yet they kind of
scrabbling for an explanation but it’s depleting and, you
know, innervating as oppose to energising because actually
all of us need to be cared for. We need to be nurtured. We need to be nourished. And in fact, therapy, I’d actually back therapy
being funded much more than it is not just
clinical psychology and not just psychiatry
but, you know, not enduring it the worried
will but saying that actually in a modern society like ours
we need forms of paid therapy which are a form of mothering. And the female– – the
therapists are now often female and that’s, you know, it’s a
form of form nurturing and care. And not only is that OK, it is– has been part of the
human condition to need that since the beginning
of time.>>But we would now
be paying for it as a professional service
rather than finding it in a family or a social network?>>I think sometimes we– I
think lots of people do find it in their families in such
a degree so I don’t think that this is everything. But I’m just saying in so far
as it may be well a pattern that if shown so clearly to,
you know, if people to be lonely and for this more, you know,
that not the major depression but now that it’s for serious
sort of problems I think that it’s OK for them to,
you know, 10 therapy sessions that cost so much
and rebates more. I actually think it’s– and indeed it may develop into something more
serious if it’s not helped. So, you know, I think its part of the modern world I
think we can romanticise and sentimentalise. There are a lot of
families out there that also don’t fully
respond to the other. They– Someone told me about
how though, they’re trying to tell the mother
something and– about their new job
and she opposed as if there was an irritant of
even the conversation coming into her world and
they just sort of kept talking over
the telephone. I mean, so there’s lots of
ways in which getting someone to listen with that exceptional
attentiveness, you know, people need it and
I think we should be as a wealthy society
more generous than we are in supporting.>>Yeah. Let’s have a
look at some of the things in what we see as modern
life that have an impact on all of these issues. And, you know, what is it about
our society that contributes to these conditions,
whatever the– whether their presence of prevalence is
exaggerated or not. One of the most interesting, I
think, to start with would be for David to tell us a little
bit about what you found out about loneliness
and social media because the findings are
quite interesting I think and not necessarily
expected or consistent.>>Yeah. The research
of the matter around social media is quite
mixed, there is one camp that said it’s great it’s going
provide solutions for people who experience loneliness
and the other side is, well, it’s actually more isolating
because the circle that you– the virtual world that you’re
going to is really restrictive around what you are looking for and it doesn’t have
the diversity of the real world unless you
go looking for it of course but when it’s just
you at the computer, it easier to constrain
the interactions that you have to
topics or issues. And our research ran
a mixed longitudinal so we ran the same
questions and asked– also asked about
social media use, and also interestingly
the idea of friends and Facebook uses the
term friends for people that you connect with. And– Well people who indicated
that the response is indicated that they weren’t feeling
lonely they had high rates of friends on Facebook. For people who did register
as being lonely those split into two groups and those who are using social
media found it have no use and the other group were
making reconnections. So it wasn’t that
they’re making new friends but they’re reconnecting with
friends they’ve had previously that they might have
fallen out of touch with but family as well. And so social media,
it’s about– I guess as a solution
to loneliness is about re-igniting goes to
their intimate relationships but reconnecting with people
who we’ve lost touch with rather than being able to
expand their world.>>So using it as
a tool to keep– a tool that supports
relationships I guess rather than something that
changes radically.>>Yes that’s right.>>Yeah, yeah.>>And to an extent it starts that process of
self-verification. You get people bouncing
back ideas of who you are and your identity
based on what they know and that may be giving you the
strength or resolve to then, to progress out of that
experience that you’re in.>>There was– you may
met one of the guest at the festival is
Jaan Tallinn who is one of the co-founders of Skype. And he– somebody who met him
yesterday when I introduced them and I, you know, mention what he
was talking about the festival and that they’re involved with Scott they just
said to him, “Thank you. Thank you.” So, it’s very interesting with– there are some technologies
like that. I know that that’s
the grandparent, grandchild bonding
engine of all time, but there are some
technologies that seem to have had a really an impact
on keeping relationships alive and vital in quite
an interesting way.>>There’s the other side of
it though and it reminds me of going out to dinner
about two weeks ago. I went to a restaurant and
there are eight people sitting at a table, eight people
they were individually on their little machine talking
to somebody else and not one of them was talking to anybody
around the table itself. It’s rather like that Looney
cartoon, the simulacrum of the father and son watching
the sunrise on television when outside the window
the real sun is rising. So that I think if
we try to say, where is loneliness coming from? I think there’s part
of social media that are not real relationships. These are not factual,
they are superficial. They’re often benile. And therefore I think
when you come back to you original question where may things have gone
wrong this may well have been that we’ve moved away from
this sort of collectivism and it’s type of socialisation
to other aspect of socialisation which are emphasis
and out of factual and don’t have much meaning.>>Yes, and are not
necessarily there when people really need them.>>Yeah.>>So the times in
people’s lives which they need more
acutely to help and support of other people are not ones that those social media
connexions can fulfil.>>Yes. And we can come
back to that earlier issue of if there has been a
true increase in depression and I loudly suggested it
hasn’t been a true increase but it’d been out of factual. If we look at rates of
depression in China 50 or 60 years ago there
were absolutely minimum. And of course if you said you
had depression Chairman Mao would probably send you off to–>>To make you somewhere to
make you really depressed.>>But they have gone up
excessively and you can look at rates of depression
in Chinese people who migrate to Western
countries. And by and large the Chinese
people actually still have low rates of depression
than most other groups because they have a
whole set of values. One is that there’s something
bigger in life than you. So they have a collectivistic
culture rather than individualistic one. They believe in destiny
and faith. They believe in fortitude
and so on and so forth. And these values that have
changed so rapidly in China and where we’re seeing
the rates of depression, including that dreadful
clinical depression increase, I think can be tied in
and I think they do link in with the concept
of loneliness. And also the whole other
side of the literature which is the well-being
literature. And just so I make one final
comment, the other side looking at David’s data, are that if
we look at rates of well-being over the last four
decades, in not one country of the world have rates
of well-being increased. They have either stayed the same
or they’ve actually decreased. And in fact, they have
decreased most distinctly for women than for men. And the general suggestion is that women now may need more
requirements, they’re required to be a mother, a wife, to have
a job and so on and so forth. And I think the well-being
aspect is this equally relevant to depression as it
is to loneliness.>>And, I mean, I think
having a conversation like this is really about, you
know, one side of it is talking about depression and loneliness
but it’s really about saying if as a society we
want to be a society where people have good
rates of well-being and potentially increasing
rates of well-being. How do we achieve that? What are the causes of
depression and loneliness that other result of the
kind of lives we lead and how do we identify those
and what we do about them? What do we do about them?>>I think the biggest
factor that comes through in the well-being
literature is that we have been
increasingly in case of the view that we should chase happiness. And happiness and well-being
need to be distinguished. Happiness is best defined as a
brief femoral temporary event, you know, the wallabies
[phonetic], somewhere rather when. [ Laughter ] And you feel happy. And, so it’s very
transy [phonetic] and it’s not very important. It has no effect
on your longevity. Well-being does if you have– well-being you live
another 10 years. And there are few key components to well-being one is this
issue of materialism. So we are increasingly
encouraged by the advertising industry that we are failures unless
we have the special watch and that we’re falling behind and we are increasingly
encouraging by the advertising industry and
particularly we’re seeing it in our kids that we’re falling
behind unless we get this and that, and this and that
and so on and so forth. And that materialistic pursuit
is in fact counterproductive. You can not chase well-being. It’s a journey that
should be engaged in. And it’s the journey that’s
more important than the goal because our senses
get quickly sated with materialistic achievements. And so if you look at, you
know, well-being as defined by Aristotle through to all
the religions in the world, basically their whole
series of things that constitute well-being
that is to be well-socialised, defined a higher meaning
in life than one’s self and there was a wonderful
inscription on Egyptian portals with paper who were
about to leave this life. And there were two questions. Did you have joy in your life? And the other one was did
you give joy in your life? And by and large is,
again as Aristotle said that happiness comes more from giving rather
than from receiving. So I think if we try to bring
all these issues together then the issue of enhancing
well-being ties in very much with loneliness and
with rates of depression in that nonclinical sense.>>Yes, and if we look at
the causes of loneliness, other ones, ones
that we can identify and potentially what there
are as remedies for those. You know, one of the most of many things is the
changing social structures that mean fewer relationships but also the more temporary
nature of relationships. What are the things
that are driving that and what do you think we can
do about those issues, David?>>Well, that’s a good point. Zygmunt Bauman talks about the
liquidity of modern society where people, you know, tap
in when they need a fix of, you know, friendship and then
they tap out and they log in and they log out and
that sort of thing. But it goes to you’re
determining the boundaries of your world like I
referred to before. And so you can control how big
your world is which puts limits on it and if you find that
your world is shrinking and you’re becoming lonelier
then your world view becomes smaller, whereas if
you’re not feeling lonely and you’re confident then your
world view can get a little bit bigger. And it’s that I guess that
conflict between a small world and a big world that
is one of the areas where we can address the issue
of loneliness or and look at ways at least in how
it might be exploited.>>Anne?>>Well, I really–
I think it’s not– I think it’s connected to
what Gordon was saying. And certainly in all
the work on narcissism that it’s really clear that
materialism is a very strong, you know, when people are higher in narcissism they
become more materialistic. It’s also true that the society
is encouraging us to be so and to pursue a certain
sort of lifestyle. Even now goods are
distinguishing themselves, you know, the avatars
is used, identity and the sense of identity. Often if you look at advertisement you can’t even
workout what they’re selling until the very end
and I have the product because it really is
selling a sense of yourself. And, you know, the flip side of
that the dark side of that is, you know, going on to
Facebook and thinking that other people have the life
that you ought to be living. There’s a really strong
shining thing I think running through all of this and
I think that is connected to perhaps the milder end of
depression but to loneliness and there’s tremendous
shame in being a lone in a world that’s
supposed to be wired and to having multiple Facebook
friends and all the rest of it, the quantity rather
than the quality. When you think about what a
seen relationship what Facebook really is, how cheap
liking something is. I bet to being what I call a
passive lurker on Facebook. [ Laughter ] And I very gingerly likes
something but also notice that came kind of obligation
very quickly, you know, to make sure I done my
duty to like people. I mean it’s such a seen
form of what, you know, people are seeing themselves
liked or not liked and how many and counting so that this
is a very shaming experience potentially for people. Material possessions, you know,
that Gordon is absolutely right. Every bit of evidence in the Australians [inaudible]
has been absolutely brilliant in bringing it to our
attention in a public way that all the work on well-being
shows that you get, you know, poverty is bad, OK,
we know that. It’s crummy from the point
of view of the poor person and its poor crummy from the
point of view of the society which is most in poverty. But once you get to a certain
fairly middling sort of, you know, medium, you
know, a mediocre level.>>Danny Carman [assumed
spelling] quantified it in 1999 is $10,000
in the US community. Once you’re in about
$10,000 there was no increase in well-being.>>Yeah. Which I think–>>Well I think it’s
gone up to about 7– that 10 now equals about 70.>>Which would take the
pressure of all of us, because in fact I think that
the loneliness, depression, disconnection loss, all of
those things is connected with– Hugh Mackay was very
good on this he says, you know, “How are you busy? How are you busy?” It’s not even how are you, he
had just it all run together in one way and, how
are you busy, you know. And there’s something terribly,
I mean, boy is it shaming to say you’re note busy,
you know, you’re retired. Does anyone ever spoken to
someone recently who is– who’s just recently retired. And this punishing round of
exhausting number of activities and hobbies and things
that they have to proof because in essence, if you are
a busy person then you are one of those for whom,
time is money. And that’s the question,
you know. So you’re like, we’re all
starting to inhibit the world of the 1950s CEO businessman
for whom time was money and but we are meant to be, you
know, that you’re too busy to do this, you’re
too busy to do that. And as we rush past each
other with to income family and all the rest
of it, you know, we are not seeing each
other, we’re not stopping, we’re not– no nobody. I have a friend Raimond
Gaita who’s a philosopher. He by the way was a friend who
said the vices in the virtues.>>Oh really?>>Yeah. But he will
say, “How are you,” instead of, “How are you?” It’s a little to the– he actually wants
to know the answer.>>Somebody who can listen.>>So you actually say and I always find I tell
him truthfully how I am. Whereas for most of
us we go, you know–>>Fine, fine. Busy, busy.>>That’s right and you
notice you go to shops now and you buy something
and they’ll say, how are you like
awesome or, you know. You may just say awesome,
I’m awesome, you know. Or, you buy something and
they say, beautiful, you know, it’s all said about
that, when this is of course a great disparity. At one point I went
into a shop– no right it was Christmas. So I’ve done a lot of Christmas
shopping it was not good for my temper. So, you know, women in
Christmas shopping now there’s a whole story. There should be an
essay on that. But there was so many people who asked me this
question, how am I. I got to one shop and it
is true that she guided me to the largest section
of the clothing which was that was not helpful. [ Laughter ] So, when she said how are you? You know, when I was
signing something, I actually gave her an answer. I said, “Actually my
mother has shingles which is an ugly disease with
pustules,” I went through it. The look of blushing
horror on her face as I actually answered the
question in a real and true way. But what I’m getting at is
this extremely superficial air-kissing rushing
past, busy, busy, busy. You know, it’s not a
way to foster connexion which is what people
and, you know, so many people even the woman
I began with who, you know, burst into tears when I
started talking about my ankle. She needed someone to say how
are you, and you know how I.>>And listen to
the answer, yeah.>>That relates to
one of the strategies with the slow movement that
Cowl Honorary [assumed spelling] introduced initially for
eating that, you know, instead of rushing
throughout food we eat slowly. But Clive Hamilton in Australia
did a news he said he looking at people eat retired
and downsized. And the people actually who
downsized are usually gone from big houses in Melbourne to
some sort of terrible home unit in Surfers Paradise
and don’t know anybody and they’re depressed
as whatever. But he found that
only 10% of people who downsized actually
felt they were worst off. The great majority
of people said, “I’ve got less money available but I’m actually
feeling better.” So well-being does relate very
much to this issue of rush versus the slow movement.>>Now, we’ve got some
time for questions and discussions from you. There are two microphones. Do come to one of those
microphones with a question.>>While we’re finding
my friends.>>Yes.>>Can I just say about
Kyle [assumed spelling] and Ore [assumed spelling] and
I, the two critics of business. We like each other’s work. But you know what? We were too busy to mate
when he came to his bed. [ Laughter ] I’m guilty too.>>I was just an air-kiss
wasn’t as you pass by?>>No, no. He was in–>>Now we know you’re
really important Anne.>>He was in a plane on the
way to London sending me because I was on
a plane somewhere, I mean, it was– yeah, so. It happens to all of us.>>If we have known since Aristotle what makes
a life a worthwhile life and a life full of well-being. If we have known, we’ve
had that information even if we’ve spent a couple
of thousand years assuming that religions were
only telling us that for their owning interests. If we’ve had that knowledge but
we live as we do in a society that encourages us in
the opposite direction. So, you know, this research
about what underpins well-being about community, real
relationships, meaning and purpose and the ability
to be grateful and satisfied, you know, to have a level
of material needs met and to be grateful
and satisfied. But we live in a society where
everything that we’re exposed to is sending us in
the opposite direction. What are some practical ways
that people can try, you know, at a level of policy
or at a level of individual behaviour any
kind of part in this process? What are things that you think
could help us to, you know, go against those social
forces or change things in our own lives or in
lives of our communities?>>I think there are few things. I don’t want to speak
for too long here but Seligman who’s come up
with a hierarchy and so. For instance part of his
hierarchy is looking at work. And basically what the broad
hierarchy is either you can have a place in life or you
can have a good life or a meaningful life. So in regards to work,
having a job is better than not having a job. Having a career is
better than having a job. And having an area that you work in involving our
tourism is even higher. So I think the first thing is
we should say where are we now and can we set ourselves
further up the hierarchy? Secondly, how can we improve
our level of socialisation? Coming back to Aristotle’s
some re-quote that “Happiness is the
consequence of a deed that underlies all the social
manifestos about well-being that in fact we should
be more thinking about how we can give rather than receive” they I think
are the principle components, slowing down. Optimization is another
one that is setting goals for yourself will
take you forward. Once that you set for
yourself and you’re likely to achieve not too hard that
you will fail and not too simple that they will bore you. And the other aspect is
how you view the world and that can be changed. Viktor Frankl, the amazing
psychiatrist who was Auschwitz and saw the most horrible
things, came out of that camp and said, “Best experience
in my life.” There are people who– and the
point I’m making here is this was an extraordinary
human being. He looked at negative events and
tried to find a positive spin. And we do that at times
particularly psychologists will say to patients, “Come back
next week bring back an exercise book. Write down the good things in your life write
down the bad things.” Once you get people looking at
the positives and start to think about the positives, simple
and try as that may seem. It does seem to help.>>And the traits
about self-perceptions about what you perceive. We, the institute did
some research recently where we asked people what they
thought the average income was in brackets and then later in the survey we asked
what their income was. There’s a direct correlation between what you
think his average and where you are actually at. And once your world is
reinforcing your own position then to move beyond
that world is when you get a bigger world
view and then you can start to see some of the
things that Gordon talked about beyond your
own immediate world.>>And that there’s a technical
term there called the Relative Consumption Theory. And that is it’s not the fact
of how much you’re earning but if you think that
you are falling behind, that’s what drives you into
unhappiness and loneliness. It’s not the reality
it’s the concept of how are you are travelling
relative to other people. So you need to get rid of
that relative extrapolation.>>Question from here.>>My name is Anthony Brow. And we’ve heard quite
a lot about depression and loneliness and– but the
title of the talk is The Price of Modern Life is
Depression and Loneliness. In other words, the way
we live is causing– is the way we live causing
the depression and loneliness. A lot of people nowadays
lessen their jobs. And for them when they
lose their jobs they lose their identity. And this surely leads to them,
A, being lonely, not alone but lonely and because
they’ve lost their identity. They don’t know who they are
therefore they get depression. I’m wondering if we could
talk about that for awhile.>>Well I think it’s a
really good question. And a very important point to
rise because one of the aspects, you know, and you’re
asking what the challenge. I think overarching policies of neoliberalism have been
unhelpful and I think that the– I heard about a story
recently where some people at a university all had to apply
for their jobs the next year. So that they were in every year
they were anxiously thinking about whether or not
they’ll have a job. And then you’re talking
about of course, you know, incredible loss,
anxiety over money, anxiety over who you are
now because, you know, that question of, you
know, how are you busy. The other thing is
what do you do? You know, at the dinner party
it has to be always, you know, your identity is tied
so much to paid work. So I think that, you know,
challenging the kind of idea that the only thing that
matters is economic efficiency or that somehow the
penetration of the market into every single firm in a
way that is quite ruthless into sell, institutions
into a social relationships. I thought Michael Sando [assumed
spelling] put this very well when he said that we cease
to have a market and sort of become a market society
that it’s penetrated too far. And I just say particularly
in relation to men loneliness and depression I think there’s
been quite a lot of work done of a very powerful and pointed
kind looking at men who drop out of almost out of society
and the rates of depression and loneliness amongst those is
very high and quite unbearable because they don’t
perhaps have the network, social networks that women do.>>I’d agree entirely. And I think the best
example is really in Japan when people retired from their
company they would still go back each day and be regarded
as part of the company until they’re in their 80s. Nowadays they cut ruthlessly
and there are escalating rate of suicide in Japan as a way
above all other countries. And the stories that are told
about it because in Japan in a tang your identity
with work is probably as better big as
any other country. So I think your exemplary is
an extremely important one.>>Next question.>>I’m Caroline Rinco
[assumed spelling] and my question is basically
like is, are we better at treating depression in
modern times than we were 100, 200 years ago and what
evidence do we have for that?>>The evidence is nonexistent. Tony Jorm 20 years ago did a
study looking at the number of psychiatrist in Australia
and the impact on, you know, rates of depression and
treatment and so on. And there’d been numerous
studies at nature, there’s just nothing going. So if you look at population
levels the impact of, and it’s not just
psychiatrist, psychologist, the whole mental health arena,
it doesn’t look very good. But when you bring it down
to the individual level, if you talk to people with
say melancholic depression, the biological depression
have been put on probe for antidepressant the way
their lives have turned around or have a bipolar disorder
and their lives turn around. At the individual level it’s
an extremely impressive domain. And my personal view is that mood disorder is the
most amenable one for benefit that we have in all
of psychiatry. And I think the figure of
being able to bring something out of a fair income
clinical depressive if so none of this pseudo stuff
is right about 80%. And that’s as good as
anything in medicine. So I think we should
feel encouraged. I think the rights
are compromised if you have the wrong paradigm,
if you give people medication where that’s not
the appropriate way to intervene and the converse. That’s what’s bringing
in the numbers down.>>Yes?>>Hi. I have a related
question for Gordon. I was recently diagnosed with
depression and put on the drugs which can I say were
really good for me. I know it’s supposed to be
like anti, antidepressants but. It does not say everyone
should be on the Normace. [ Laughter ]>>No, that’d be
far too dangerous.>>I guess I’m really
interested in your– what you said about diagnosis
and when you do go to a GP and say, “Look, I’ve been
really depressed lately,” and, you know, they put you on the
drug so get you to cancel out. How can they tell whether
it’s something in your brain that needs the drugs or if you
just need to chat to someone? Is there a way of
finding that out?>>Well that’s one of the
great concerns in psychiatry. People keep being nihilistic and saying we’ve got
no laboratory test. No benchmark test so let’s
might as well give up. But in fact in medicine
there are many exemplars that exactly represent
that story. Parkinson’s disease, there
is no benchmarked test. No laboratory test. It requires very careful
consideration by a neurologist to say, “Is this Parkinson’s
or is this supranuclear palsy?” So for melancholy the
biological depression, people lose the light
in their eyes, they lose the resonance
in their voice. And there are a whole series
of clinical symptoms and signs that if people are trained in
them you can get just as good at getting a clinical diagnosis
as getting a laboratory test as you would with neurology. So, what I’m arguing for is
a far more sophisticated way to approaching diagnosis
and that we need to train practitioners
and get away from this dumb American model
that subtyping doesn’t matter that major depression
is the whole story. That’s where I think
we are getting– going back to the
sort of the Dark Ages. But I’m delighted to
hear that you talk. Oh, and there are two
points, one is you talked about doing well with an
antidepressant, that’s great. But secondly, that
you got up and talked about having depression
and being treated. That sort of story would not
have occurred 20 years ago and it speaks to the
de-stigmatisation that we’re seeing and
that’s absolutely fantastic. [ Applause ]>>I’m afraid we’ve run out
of time for further question, so I’m sorry about that. Before we go I just want to
ask each of our panellists because we have– we want to leave you be feeling
full of joy. [ Laughter ] We want to leave this
stage with the knowledge that we have provided joy. I want to ask each of our
panellists to tell us something that they– one of the things that they really enjoy
about modern in life. And I think we’ve been quite
negative about materialism, about the demeanation
[phonetic] and the quality of human relationships
and other aspects of it. What are the things about our
era that you love and value? [ Laughter ]>>Apart from Scott.>>No well I love Scott
because I’ve got a daughter who leaves in America. So I love that. I actually think, we talked
about the vices and the virtue. I think modern society has an
incredible vivacity and vibrancy and changeable and so on. I saw that it’s, you
know, as soon as I walked down through Melbourne I feel
there’s an aliveness to it. I live out in the
country so I come down and it’s an extremely
kind of vivid experience, the absolute difference
and diversity. But, you know, one of the
really terrific things if you think back to the 1960s
and some of the struggles. And this I just think we
should feel such gratitude for is there are two women
on the panel for start. It would have been all blokes. There is a much greater
inclusiveness all around there is some
incredibly different attitude to people with a disability. Not nearly far enough
I have to say. The aspect of generosity which
is involved in, you know, for example the
de-stigmatisation and mental illness has
changed enormously. So in those kind of ways that
the way we are now, you know, that the way we think about gay
marriage and the celebration of sex between people of the same gender
is a brilliant thing. So that, you know, I actually
think that thing of the vices and the virtues is
really quite, you know, is essential to keep a hold off. And it’s those kinds of
things when you think about the way we
thought about people of a different race even effect
the 1950s that we used to go to cinemas and cheer when,
you know, indigenous people in America were shot, you
know, the bow and– You know. There’s something was so
thoughtless so careless so privileged about the way
we thought about many groups and that is not by any
means entirely gone but it is breaking down. And so that is surely
something to celebrate.>>Yes, David.>>Yeah I’m building on
from what you said, Anne, it’s the ability to
step out of gender roles and to do things differently. My wife and I work both part
time and we share responsibility for the kids and that
option that you don’t as the male you’re not pressured
into being a breadwinner. But that you can make
choices that revolve around your domestic life and that they are
given value as well.>>Gordon.>>I think the modem
components add only about 10%. I’m not a Freudian
but Freud was asked for definition of mental health. And he said, “To
love and to work.” And what he meant by that was
not to be in love and infatuated but to be in a good
meaningful relationship. And to work didn’t
just mean having a job. It meant that you had a
job that provided meaning. And I think they– and part of the collectivist society
components I think they make up for 90% of what builds to
in a sort of a meaningful life. And then I think we have
the secular issues that ones that Anne has highlighted I
would certainly again emphasise I mean the difference
when I was growing up between girls and boys. It was very hierarchical. I think we are seeing
much greater parity and again there’d been so
many liberation movements that are really encouraging and
we’re seeing so much of that and I’d agree entirely. I think they are all the
important markers even though when we see as we do
every night, you know, the stories about
the exploitation in churches they are
harrowing the end point of this process will
be of great benefit. But they are I think
only about 10%. But there’d be another bonus 5% if the wallabies
could eventually win. [ Laughter ]>>Before you join me in
thanking our panellists, they’ll be signing books in
the foyer after this event. I hope to see you again
throughout the afternoon. But please join me in thanking
for these wonderful people here. [ Applause ]

Danny Hutson

39 thoughts on “The Price Of Modern Life Is Depression And Loneliness Panel, Festival of Dangerous Ideas 2014

  1. 37:00 "You cannot chase well being, it is a journey that should be engaged in. And it's the journey that is more important than the goal…

    Well-being: 1) To be well socialised, 2) to find a higher meaning in life than oneself, 3) did you have joy in your life, did you give joy in your life?

  2. we are old about depression being on the rise and that this is down to us being better able to recognise it – however over the years the arbitrary symptoms that psychiatry dictates are needed for diagnosis have changed over the years much the same as all of their other so called mental illness's – today in order to be given the label of major depressive disorder you needs to have had a couple of symptoms over the last 2 weeks – then your doctor will likely give you a prescription for a psychiatric drug with side effects and buried clinical trails and harms

  3. psychiatry and psychology focus on the individual yet mental disharmony doesn't just appear from nowhere but are our attempts to cope with a painful environment = the biological model from what I've read has been discredited years ago yet the myth lives on – I have also read that the evidence for either psychiatry or psychology is barely none existent

  4. we have mass alienation yet we are more connected in the digital space that is almost a false or superficial connection  – people are also frightened of many things and worry is endemic – media, ruling class etc

  5. I'd love to see the scientists putting forward the idea that beyond a certain amount of money doesn't matter living on that amount for 5 years and then reformulating their ideas

  6. seeing people over the years the main issues that people present with are about depressing job, lack of money and poor relationships and access to society

  7. Problem is our education SYSTEMS are not suitable to our biology.
    We need to learn, Success through failure. Remember the mind talks but the body knows and so being in the now is through the body. Body has no choice only the present moment. The mind is everywhere always." Free your ass and your minds will follow". In my personal life I use Gravity to develop my biology and this, Weight training, gives me 25 % more oxygen to the Brain. with this Training the body the extra raw materials to the brain removes depression, removes poor impulse control, removes obscessive compulsive. Body in Motion. Increases concentration, flexibility,patience,strength,speed, bone density, muscle tone, endurance,confidence, cleaner eating habits, more respect. all through Gravity´s influence on the body. The Physics of Life. Life is great when you know what your doing. We are what we do. Aristotle.

  8. The Price of Modern Life is Depression and Loneliness! Not for Men! It is women who are suffering under the modern paradigm. NOT Men! Why do you think women in the West consumer over 80% of prescription anti-depressants, a fact that has been supressed by the MSM.

  9. Isn't it a fact that we aren't needed to hunt and gather anymore? We are hunter's and gatherer's. Not 9 to 5, drunk, cell phone carrying, sports fanatics. That kind of life seems to exclude the self needs for debauchery.

  10. We regard this idea as strange, and extraordinarily mistaken. Depression and loneliness are perfectly removable, and avoidable!

  11. Loneliness is related to human self and thinking while the life we live is materialistic i.e. very physical. Are we aware of our self and its needs? Its needs are met opposite of our body .. self develops by helping others and gets degraded by being greedy and selfish which leads to consequences i.e. loneliness and depression!! Whatever we do in life has consequences. Why death is universal?? Have we thought about it? Read the book What is Islam by Parwez… chapters 2 and 6.

  12. It's worse than depression and loneliness, it's also death, disease, poverty due to robots, violence, loss of free will and loss of privacy. Robots, machines, and electronics able to do more and become smaller, and the increase influence and power of banks are the enemy of mankind. I say we need to go back to the age before machines and central banking. I want to live before the industrial revolution. The Amish are smart to live as they do. They're self empowered and live according to nature. Also lack of nature and lack of personal freedom causes depression. Life in the modern age sucks. I want a time machine to go back to life on earth when the world was sane. Too much technology in the world everywhere now. I feel suffocated by it.

  13. The price of depression and lonliness is losing the most important person in your life unfairly and unjustly.

  14. I would be interested to find out if any capital was raised from pharmaceutical companies to go toward to the bottom line of this topic. I await the realisation that psychotropic medication is largely responsible for the current human condition. Drugging young children under the guise of clinical disorders is where the 'depression' begins.

  15. Interesting discussion. I'm glad I'm not young anymore. To navigate through the social landscape and emerge unscathed by depression would be quite a challenge. The pressures on people are overwhelming. We have been socially engineered to adapt to and accept the invasion of technology into every aspect of our daily lives. We're forced to learn things constantly in order to cope with the plethora of tasks involved in daily living. Just when you've learned how to use an app they"improve" it. And you don't know how to use it anymore or you have to upskill again. You just have to tell a doctor you're sad and he'll put you on an antidepressant. Most people don't do their due diligence on pharmaceuticals and believe they work. There's a lot of information about antidepressants on the internet worth studying. The news is not good.Erich Fromm, mentionedin the discussion was interested in why, given the duress of living in the concentration camps there were so few suicides. He questioned survivors and came to the conclusion that those who didn't succumb to despair were able to visualise a future when they would be reunited with loved ones. It gave them the motivation to continue living, to endure their horrific experiences. But they were also lucky to have experienced, prior to incarceration a more ordered, disciplined environment. Judaism was a lifestyle governed by rules of behaviour and religious practices designed to promote well being, social connection and joy. What do young people have today? Lots of choices. The pace of change today has exceeded our ability to digest what is happening and create a design for living. Today's youth is no different from previous generations. They think they know it all. It's only when you've travelled a long way on life's highway that you realise how little you actually know.

  16. what a load of crap people talking there CASH COW and not telling us what we can do. Telling my Doctor just leads to another pill.

  17. Don't ya love it? Panels of people discussing us and telling us why we are the way we are and feel the way we do. They of course are experts and beyond these things. I don't need anyone to tell me how I feel and I'm not watching this beyond about two minutes. However my comment below will make it look pretty much like I did. I guess because at some point I decided I am better off thinking for myself.

    I think if I wasn't depressed I'd be one shallow sheeple. Who would not be depressed and even suicidal to be born (against their will) with moderately to massively dysfunctional parents and education, with insane religions, then finding out finally it was all lies you'd been taught and you are caught up into a world of massively dysfunctional and violent human beings that are hell bent on destroying their own nest and fighting it out century after century learning nothing and hating and fearing you because you have the audacity to think this isn't the best of all possible worlds.

  18. I watched a video here on youtube about british centenarians and it was hilarious !! they were all over 100 and having a great time, "robbing the establishment by collecting their pensions", not at all as depicted here by the well dressed gentleman.

  19. Most people cant even afford a coffee to socialize nowadays, everything is so damn exploited, coupled with that wonderful capitalist-created artificial scarcity!

  20. People are not suffering from depression, they are suffering from the reality of this shit system, capitalism!

  21. Whoa! What a 'dangerous idea' for discussion in 2014. Who would have thought it?

    With these experts in power, no wonder progress is slow.

  22. The biological 'chemical imbalance ' theory of depression is a scam promulgated by the pharmaceutical industry and given vindication through the constantly updated DSM.

  23. It's amazing how many talks documentarys etc are on you tube about all this. The world is going to shit. Suicide, drugs, mass murders, depression, loneliness, isolation, family betrayal,. Broken relationships. I knew 15 years ago technology was going to kill empathy and destroy people. I really don't feel it's a laughing matter. It seems to be sugar coated. No one wants to just say it. we are done. Neighbors don't even say hi anymore for god sakes.

  24. i believe we can adapt to nearly anything except the monetary system is so evil and is the cause of most of the issues within society and the world. Money is the fake God and creates Hell on Earth.

  25. I read a story in Readers Digest where an old woman had lost her husband, and her children were asking what to do now; she told them if all of them die she would still find a way to be happy.

  26. Its 2019 we now know its the purposeful harm caused to society by radicalised American neo-liberal terrorists.  Harm caused to the poorest and most vulnerable (eg abused women and children) which is then exploited and profited from by maggots who feed off the puss filled sore that is social decay.  Who create jobs and profits for violence and suicide industry, lawyers, judges, prisons, police, social workers, social enterprises, etc

    HATE STARTS HERE, HATE STARTS when new immigrants are bought into a country and the government illegally refuse to provide homes for the most vulnerable local population.  These new residents drive disabled and poor locals from their homes causing resentment dissension envy and HATE.

  27. NO TO SERIAL POLYGAMY. Being a stress-out working single mum Im really disappointed at how men are taken away the dignity and responsibility to happily support a family and the idiotic lies about being free ……the claim of lifestyle of seriell polygamy as being " right" and ok – is forced upon women and men. ONLY NARCISSISTS THRIVE. The endless sorrows of the superficiality. The loss of a loving religion …and all the egoistic selfishness which is being claimed to be the right future for poeple. Take back the families!Take back the loving and caring religion!

  28. i enjoyed this talk. i am overwhelmingly sad that my entire life is spent working some shit job so i can afford to not die

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