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Are depressed people more realistic? posted 01 October 2007 in Philosophy DiscussionAre depressed people more realistic? by xatantius, Candidate

I heard of this theory not too long ago, and it intrigued me. The argument is that people who suffer depression have a more accurate view of life and the world, due to not being caught up in idealistic or overly optimistic notions, and don't see the world through rose-coloured glasses. I'm ont sure what the answer is, but I'd love some people's opinions on this. Comments please! Rant away. view post


Are depressed people more realistic? posted 03 October 2007 in Philosophy DiscussionAre depressed people more realistic? by Zarathinius, Auditor

They're still seeing things from a skewed perspective. Depressed people tend to view things from a morose point of view, which is not necessarily any more 'real' than how non-depressed people see things. Grumpy, pessimistic people like to claim that they're just being realistic. However, they're still irritating to be around and never accomplish anything. Hence, the realism of one's outlook may not really matter if one's outlook makes one apathetic.

Also, &quot;reality&quot; is ridiculously subjective; I think we've probably got a fair few threads on that topic alone. <!-- s:wink: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/icon_wink.gif" alt=":wink:" title="Wink" /><!-- s:wink: --> view post


Are depressed people more realistic? posted 09 October 2007 in Philosophy DiscussionAre depressed people more realistic? by Jamara, Auditor

Wow, you nailed me on the head. &quot;Grumpy, pessimistic people like to claim that they're just being realistic.&quot; Yep, that's me. But that doesn't make me apathetic. I try to see all possible outcomes and plan for the most likely. It is just my perspective that the less happy outcomes tend to be the more frequent outcomes. And if I am always planning for the worst yet hoping for the best, then I can never really be broadsided by harsh reality. view post


Are depressed people more realistic? posted 04 November 2007 in Philosophy DiscussionAre depressed people more realistic? by Zarathinius, Auditor

Quote: &quot;Jamara&quot;:2ah4i96h
Wow, you nailed me on the head. &quot;Grumpy, pessimistic people like to claim that they're just being realistic.&quot; Yep, that's me. But that doesn't make me apathetic. I try to see all possible outcomes and plan for the most likely. It is just my perspective that the less happy outcomes tend to be the more frequent outcomes. And if I am always planning for the worst yet hoping for the best, then I can never really be broadsided by harsh reality.[/quote:2ah4i96h]

But that's not being 'depressed.' It's not depression unless your overweening realism reduces you to a flabby lump of human flesh that refuses to do anything because &quot;it's just not worth trying.&quot; view post


Are depressed people more realistic? posted 05 November 2007 in Philosophy DiscussionAre depressed people more realistic? by Jamara, Auditor

My depression manifests itself in 4 am drunken, belligerent screaming matches with nobody else in the room about shit that has happened in my past in the weakest attempt at a cathartic release, though those sessions usually end in tears and then I stumble my ass off to bed. Either that or I'm too nervous to even leave the apartment.
So actually, I disagree that depressed people have a more accurate view. I think it's like the polar opposite of the 'happy' optomistic view. Their view is more distorted by their fears and inadequacies. view post


Are depressed people more realistic? posted 17 November 2007 in Philosophy DiscussionAre depressed people more realistic? by Lucky Sevens, Candidate

What a depressed or manic individual lacks is the ability to accurately distinguish between negative and positive circumstances. As long as life proceeds according to the model one has set up internally, everything is great, but it is a rigid model, and life is full of vicissitudes. That said, depressives are probably more in line with reality due to the influence of attitude on results, especially in social situations. Both mania and depression tend to make life worse, but manics are constantly blindsided by the barrage of negative consequences, while depressives were expecting them all along, and this reinforces their depression. These are both clinical disorders that interfere with one's ability to function. In effect, in order to rationalize their own perspective, either side has to blithely ignore aspects of reality, which means that even when one is correct, it is only by chance.

Optimism and pessimism are much weaker forms of these. In nature, realism (the neutral state which unbiasedly uses observation to guide outlook) is probably best in terms of effectiveness, when both survival and success are at stake. In society, it's a toss up between realism and optimism. view post


Are depressed people more realistic? posted 17 November 2007 in Philosophy DiscussionAre depressed people more realistic? by Israfel, Peralogue

Ok, perhaps a slight change in direction, but the original statement sounds like it coulda come more or less out of Heidegger... He doesn't mean entirely the same thing I suspect, but the similarity amuses me nonetheless. For those interested;

Heidegger's idea is that we see everything through the context of the Mood we're in, and although the context of Mood isn't very well defined, he basically says that the way we see things in most moods is loaded with background assumptions - a chair is not just an inanimate lump of wood we have no clue about, but something to sit on, etc, but that this tendency leads us to forget that we're all actually locii of possibilies. So we tend to get along by doing things because that's what one does. One sits on the chair and not the table, and sits facing the teacher/lecturer/whatever in educational places.

And, to get to the point, he says that there's a certain Mood that makes us realise about the reality of the many possibilities that continually face us, a Mood that serves to shake us out of our everyday rut. This Mood is translated as 'Angst', or 'Anxiety' and has been compared to depression. So if you'd agree with him, then depressed people actually are getting closer to the reality of things. Of course, for Heidegger it is a state that passes, and I suspect that he'd agree that someone who felt it near-constantly would not be better off for it... view post


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