Calendar: Saturday 7 January 2023

Turning mental health on its head

Humane: having or showing compassion.
Inhumane: lacking the human qualities of compassion; being cruel.

Here is an idea from Natalie Rogers, an art psychotherapist: If you are in distress, you are being human. You are reacting to circumstances in a totally human way. You don’t need to be treated as though there is something wrong with you.

Let us now combine what she is saying with a quote from Jiddu Krishnamurti: “It is no measure of health to be well-adjusted to a sick society.”

Could this mean that anyone who is thriving in a sick society is actually pretty sick (and inhuman), while those that are struggling are human? Does this mean that much of what makes us unwell is tied up with living in a rotten, hostile and inhumane world? And if that is the case, maybe the humans don’t need to be so hard on themselves: since they are merely being human in an inhumane world? Maybe the real mental health issue is for the inhumanes to seek help and learn to be human – and do us all a favour?

As ever, we are merely posing playful questions to you. There are no right or wrong answers. How you respond is entirely up to you.