Can Faith Alone Cure Clinical Depression?

Short answer: no.

Long answer to be found at my article on Yahoo! Voices, Can Faith or Positive Thinking Cure Depression? 

Anyway, I was a Born Again Christian in my youth.  I was sent to a Born Again Christian school.  I still have nightmares about it.  Anyway, I was taught that worry was a sin.  Depression was also a form of worry and I was to “let go and let God.”  I was told I had problems because I didn’t have enough faith.  Dammit — I had faith.  But faith turned out to be worthless when tangling with major depression and (later on in my life) anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder.

Now, granted, not ALL Christians believe that faith will cure mental illness — even Born Again Christians believe this.  I graduated this Christian School in 1987 (please don’t do the math) when “Prozac” was not a household name.  Although I’m now an atheist, I’m willing to bet that my old school now encourages kids with depression to see a doctor.

But there are still followers of many religions that believe mental illness is a sign that a person needs more faith.  Such a horrific policy is in effect in Afghanistan, where chained up mentally ill people are chained up, not allowed to use a toilet, forbidden to speak and are given bread, water and black pepper as an unchanging menu.

I’ve found dozens of online websites promoting faith as the only real cure for depression or anxiety disorders.  Don’t fall for this!  Some depressives can find comfort in faith, but still take medication and/or go to therapy.


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