analyticalQ book review by Anne Ku
Soul Through Creativity
H. Rosen, M.D.
copyright 1996, 263 pages paperback
After much contemplation,
I decided it was time to share my depressing poetry
to the world. In hindsight, it was the "low" that gave birth to
the creativity to write sonnets.
mid March, I hit another "low". So I went to Africa to escape
from the familiar and to embrace the unknown. My friend lent me the book
Transforming Depression to read while on safari. Usually when I travel
by myself, I would be anxious to meet other people. This time, however, I became
completely absorbed in this book.
by a Jungian psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, Professor Rosen begins with a personal
story. Then he uses real case studies (names disguised) of his patients
in therapy to illustrate how they overcome their depression and, in the extreme
case, suicidal thoughts, by "creating". He asks them to tell him
their dreams as well as to draw them out. He interprets them, and this is
what I find most fascinating. If dreams reflect our subconscious, then what
happens when we draw? What happens when we compose? When we write?
When we dance? When we create?
premise for doing this website is that the human spirit needs to
create, because it keeps the soul alive. Rosen's premise is that depression
can actually help us to become more creative. Some of the most creative
people had periods of deep depression. I know that I compose because I
need to. I write because I both need and want to. It processes my
emotions. For that, I am thankful for the "lows".
important and new to me is Rosen's proposal of "egocide." Instead
of commiting suicide, he advocates a process of egocide, transcendence, and transformation.
By giving up the ego associated with depression, the person develops a new ego-identity
and self-concept. The person goes through a symbolic death, setting in
motion a kind of mourning process.
many of us feel overburdened by everything that we had sought to achieve and acquire?
How many of us feel the need to do what we were trained to do? How many
of us are reluctant to walk away from what we have? By commiting "egocide",
we start from a fresh template.
woman who said that life wasn't worth living
for really ought to read this book.