the friend online
02 February 2007

Learning to live with mental illness - preview

Peter Ells describes his journey

For Quakers, especially, life is a spiritual journey in which we are called upon to let our lives speak
  • From the inward work of our Meeting for Worship, waiting to be led by the Light of God, we return to the world and seek to play an adventurous, active and positive role within it
  • Our testimonies give examples of the character and variety of ways we have put our spiritual experiences into practice
  • The call to live adventurously is tempered by the requirement that we are to practice discernment
  • Advices and Queries suggests several methods for doing this including prayer, joining with others to seek clearness, and the rational process of doubt and questioning
  • Jesus made the excellent suggestion that we should judge a faith by its fruits (Luke 6: 43-45)

  • Peter Ells

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    Isobel Lane, 11 February
    Thank you for writing this. I have a major depressive illness and struggle with the darkness too much of the time. That is what I personally need help with. I think the core of the problem is that a breakdown actually removes layers of energy and protection and coping with that takes a lot of energy in itself. It is something that others cannot understand with the best will in the world unless they have personal experience and a lot of perception. Mental illness is frightening for those with it as well as for others. What is needed is acceptance of the reality that people with mental illness live with, the ability to see through the illness to that of God within us. That said, the more education about mental illness there is the better.


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