Today we would like to share with you some thoughts about a small mouse-like arctic rodent called a lemming. It has a furry body, short tail and fur covered feet. Every now and then, the Lemmings begin their journey to the sea. It is what is called a mass migration. Ultimately, while trying to cross the sea they all drown. This mass migration occurs at the peak of population growth.
I have reflected upon this odd behavior at different times in my life and wondered about it. Why cross the sea? It’s almost like asking the question, “Why did the chicken cross the road?” At least we know the reason for the lemmings – population growth. Does that mean, apparently, not enough food for their communities? Does it mean that they intuitively know when it’s time to march to the sea. And what makes them want to cross the sea? Is it a mutual understanding that if others are to survive then many must give up their lives so that the remnants left behind can continue to propagate and flourish.
I wonder if there is a resonance in one’s mind that, like in our world today, mass migrations of people fleeing their homes , country of origin, families and friends to escape oppression, domination by groups inimical to their religious beliefs and values.
What does this have to do with depression? Well, it has much to do with feelings, at least for humans , when we lose our place of nesting, lose members of our family, our children, spouse and all those cherished familiar relationships that kept us intertwined and mutually responsible to and for in our own lives.
Mass migrations, people on the run, millions of people on the run, with their most prized treasures, their children, and family members. All they have is the clothes on their backs. And then another tragedy: food resources, lodging, a place that is no longer familiar and friendly – all these disappear and are non-existent. Because of warring groups in some nations, people again flee their farms, herds and crops and die of starvation. And combine this with climate change, many areas of the earth are flooded out of villages and their homes making it impossible to grow their own food, feed their children and families.
Mass migrations of families and peoples are fleeing to wherever there is hope of survival and stability They are hoping that someone will come to their rescue. National leaders ar finding that the mass migrations of people over their borders are either not welcomed or allowed in. Many times the refugees are treated with hatred, physical violence or both.
Large movements of people today are presenting complex challenges, which call for global action. Many migrant s arrive in developing countries, creating tensions where resources are already scarce, by the majority of about 763 million, who move within their own countries. rather than abroad.
The World Health Organization lists depression as a major world health problem. The organization strives to help persons become aware of the life threatening challenges that face our work and our people and nations. Millions have lost families, their own national heritages, members of their own families, plus the myriad of culture changes and climate changes press down upon and impact their lives.
Even here in the Western world we live in a society flooded with gadgets, vapid entertainment, and politicians making those self serving decisions for who is in and who is out in our societies. In America it is those who are uninsured, the children and the poor who are left out, left behind and voiceless.
Resultantly why shouldn’t depression become a number one isse for all of us. Why shouldn’t this be an issue for our local communities to help others deal with their losses, lost dreams and hopeless situations. We can’t just stand by and let others fend for themselves but it is necessary that we get involved in this global, local and personal which is draining the energy and the feelings that I belong to something bigger than myself.
Can we all be there for others when we find ourselves in a sea of indifference and let “George” do it.
Here is what I recommend, get involved at a local level, get informed on people homeless in your community, the number of refugees who are looking for support, and the persons in your own family who are depressed.