Many people are under the misconception that an increase in wealth will lead to an increase in happiness. However, this could not be further from the truth, as depression affects people across all income-brackets and from all walks of life.
The severity of depression can perhaps be gauged by the fact that according to statistics, in South Africa alone, there are approximately twenty-three known suicides a day!
Islam has given us a simple, free prescription that has no unwanted side effects and is incomparable in combating depression. In this regard, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) taught us that we should always look at those who are less fortunate than ourselves. (Saheeh Muslim #7428) In doing so, we will realize how many bounties we enjoy for which we should be thankful and how fortunate we really are.
Hence, we should daily contemplate over the plight of others in the world. There are people in the world who have no food at all and are dying of starvation. There are people who have no limbs or limbs that do not function. There are people who were forced to witness their entire family being killed before them. By pondering over the difficulties which these people encounter, we will realize that our difficulties, as painful and unbearable as they may seem, are actually not as bad as the suffering of others.
Whenever we feel down and depressed, let us think of our brothers, sisters, children and parents around the world who are less fortunate than ourselves. Then, let us raise our hands in du‘aa, thank Allah Ta‘ala for the innumerable favours that we enjoy, and beg Him to assist those in difficulty.
This is the ultimate anti-depressant of which we should all strive to take a daily dose.