Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Helping each other

Some people have no one to turn to.

As a small congregation, we can't help the entire world. We can't always help everyone who comes asking. But if someone has made an effort to be part of our community, we may go to extraordinary lengths to help them.

People with plenty of material resources only need emotional and spiritual support. But poor and disabled people often need help they simply cannot get without a friendly community. Moving is a good example. A woman with physical and mental disabilities lets someone in our church know she has to move apartments on a certain date. She can't afford to hire movers. But if she could, it is unlikely that she would have mental clarity to carry it off.

What would happen if no one stepped in? Moving day would come and go, landlords would be angry, and our disabled friend might end up in custody, possibly having harmed herself, possibly worse.

How much disruption and expense has been saved for everyone involved, when one troubled person receives adequate help? If we could find a way to get people the help they need, our entire society would benefit - but apparently, no one would "profit". A society that has no way of helping its weakest members under its economic structure, is doomed. Our society cannot sustain an enterprise that doesn't earn over a certain level of profit - regardless of how much the good or service is needed, by people who are willing and able to work. How does that add up to commonwealth, which values creating benefits to people who engage in it? And if our society is not a commonwealth, then why should those who are excluded from its benefits support it or abide by its rules at all?

If it quacks like a duck (etc.), it is probably a duck. If it is doesn't aim to benefit all, it is not a commonwealth.


  1. Hi Linda! It occurs to me that becoming mentally ill and disabled is harder than just being mentally ill and/or disabled from the outset.

  2. I wonder if the word "about" should ever be allowed to be used with the word "depressed". It seems that depression is just a disease and it tries to associate itself with real events, but it really just exists by itself and is not "about" anything.

    I watched an episode of "Private Practice" about ECT being used as a treatment for depression and the issue of memory loss came up. I have found that memory is closely linked to mood, and so if ECT really can "cure" depression then it would also cause one to lose one's memories because the memories associated with depression would no longer be available.

  3. I deal with depression by repressing memories. Otherwise, I probably would have to have (stronger) drugs and/or ECT.