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Seeing Beyond Depression

4.12  ·  Rating Details ·  67 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews
Depression is a painful reality, an illness that we cannot treat by ourselves. We need help to recover from it, and a friend to walk with us through the difficult times.

Jean Vanier, one of the great spiritual writers of our time, has written this simple and clear book about depression. The writing is inspirational and sympathetic as he explores how we can move beyond depr

Paperback, 89 pages
Published December 3rd 2005 by Paulist Press (first published 1999)
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Webster Bull
May 23, 2016 Webster Bull rated it liked it
Shelves: faith
I am a big fan of Jean Vanier and I work in a L'Arche community, so my 3-star rating here is a surprise, especially to me. While this little booklet explains a bit about depression and how we might see it anew, it is so thin that it is overpriced at $8.95. Furthermore, it is 100 percent abstraction. In Vanier's best work, he offers many anecdotes and insights from his 50 years of working with people with intellectual disabilities. There is not a single L'Arche story here.
Jan 26, 2012 Alison rated it really liked it
As someone who has experienced chronic depression I found this book one of the most gentle and encouraging reads. On one hand it could be read as very simplistic, but the truths and lessons are profound and important. A beautiful book to recommend to someone struggling with the illness.
Jan 17, 2015 Elizabeth added it
Recommended to Elizabeth by: WorldCat "Depression, Mental -- Religious aspects -- Christianity."
It reads prettily (though I found the pull-quotes on facing pages distracting), but it feels disconnected -- both as a whole, and also disconnected from my experiences (albeit second-hand) of severe, chronic depression.

The opening vignettes are about grief, and leaving aside the fact that the formatting often makes it difficult to distinguish blockquote from maintext, I'm really not interested in pages about grief as a way to ramp into, "And some people have a biological disposition to have much
Adam Carr
Meh. Not totally happy with it. The author i feel doesn't fully know what he believes, is he a Christian? Is he new age? Quote a bible verse but then say something else. Some stuff was good yeah but I was put off early on.

Jean Vanier understands the human heart and soul better than most people I have met or read.
There is wisdom in this book but all of it won't apply to everyone in every situation but anybody who has to deal with depression first or second hand will find at least some benefit from this book.
Jun 07, 2012 Jane rated it liked it
best to read in 2 parts. On one side of the page are helpful quotations; on the other some helpful info. Helpful book and uplifting but places too much emphasis on depression being linked to childhood trauma rather than life events. I would give this between 2 and 3 stars.
Aug 14, 2013 Richard rated it really liked it
This is a good, quick read about depression. Its an encouraging little book for people who suffer from depression. Its also helpful if you've got a friend struggling with this, because it can help you better understand how to love a friend through depression.
Melissa Monette
May 04, 2013 Melissa Monette rated it it was amazing
This book is wonderful. I highly suggest people read this with an open mind and withj the desire for change or the desire to understand what people go through while experiencing depression.
Jackie G
Jan 12, 2016 Jackie G rated it it was amazing
Very simple but practical advice about the roots of depression and the things individuals can do to heal and emerge from depression.
Jan 05, 2015 Jonathan rated it it was amazing
Shelves: all
As someone who experienced periods of chronic depression, Jean Vanier understood my condition better than anyone else I've ever read.
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Jean Vanier was educated in England and Canada, entered the Royal Naval College, Dartmouth, England in 1942. He went to sea in 1945 in the Royal Navy and in 1947 transferred to the Royal Canadian Navy. He resigned from the Royal Canadian Navy in 1950 while serving H.M.C.S. Magnificent. He then went to France to work in a students' community outside of Paris. He studied philosophy and theology and ...more
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