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Depression and the Body (Compass) Paperback – Sep 1973

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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Arkana (Sept. 1973)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140194657
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140194654
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 1.6 x 19.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 38,286 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
Depression has become so common that one psychiatrist even describes it as a "perfectly normal" reaction, provided, of course, it does not "interfere in our daily tasks." Read the first page
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful By L. Mateus on 22 Oct. 2012
Format: Paperback
I am a lay person recovering from Depression.From personal experience I understand the importance the body plays in overcoming depression, so this book was a must read for me.Needless to say the beginning of the book was interesting, with a few Bioenergetic exercises that were more like tasters and not complete in themselves. There were more case studies than I cared to have read.Surprisingly most of the information was still quite relevant to today, despite it having been written so long ago. The end chapters were verbose and almost put me to sleep.I have to be honest I didn't take much away from reading this book, except for the concept of faith (not necessarily religious)being a cornerstone to becoming more fully involved in life.What this book made me realise is that treating depression with a greater and deeper understanding of what depression is all about and therefore should be treated: is quite frankly still in it's infancy.When a person is depressed what is in fact depressed: the body, the mind or the soul? One of these three or all of these?The fact that there are so many people being given anti depressants and therapy and yet never fully recover from Depression makes me think that a greater understanding needs to be had. Because what is being offered right now is extremely hit and miss, which can only mean that so called "experts" don't really know very much about depression and how to permanently cure it.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 6 reviews
34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
In Making Sense of Depression, This Book is a Real Guide to Change 19 Dec. 2010
By Passionate Therapist - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a counselor myself, trained in Family Therapy. This is not the first book of Lowen's that I had read, but when I read it, I realized that I must practice from Lowen's point of view. Most depressed people (and I have been one) are told that their depression is a mental mistake and that they need to 'think better' to feel better. But as Lowen shows, thinking is not the problem. Sure, cognitive distortions arise, but they are the mind's best effort to understand very painful feelings that are real and that also are reflected in the state of the body. When a therapist identifies cognitive distortions as the origin of the problem, the depressed person just starts hiding them, because the 'distortions' are compelling, because they do 'make sense' as far as sensation goes.

Lowen's bio-energetic therapy has benefitted me enormously. It is not for dabblers. Lowen's approach to feeling better makes cognitive and family therapy appear very superficial indeed. Lowen does indeed talk about trends in society, but they are very relevant to depression, because depression is not random, it is the consequence of a state of living which is starved for real pleasure and satisfaction. Both some social and some family trends foist a joyless state of living onto children that carried forward, leads to a major depression.

The fix is not an instant or quick one. It is however, a surprisingly commonsense one-- getting back to the wisdom of sensation and emotion (with body work), protecting one's integrity with legitimate anger, and respecting the role that simple pleasures and satisfactions play in health.
30 of 36 people found the following review helpful
Surprisingly worthwhile read 5 July 2003
By Marilyn Sullivan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I am a licensed counselor and have been reading professional literature since the late '70's, had run into Lowen here & there, but never paid him much attention, assuming he would be dry and theoretical. I just picked up Depression and the Body and found it quite helpful.
The bioenergetic theory and treatment remain to be proven. Lowen's explanations make sense on the surface, anyway. But his understanding of depression, while not groundbreaking, is clear, complete, compassionate and adaptable to the counseling situation. While he focuses on early childhood and its traumas (not usually fertile ground for therapy in the real world) he also provides some useful here-and-now insights about the thinking of a depressed person and how it needs to change in order for recovery to occur.
I didn't give the book five stars because some of the book digresses into material about social and cultural issues that have little to do with the problem of depression. But overall I would recommend this book for anyone wanting to read about depression from a HUMAN angle.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
The Intelligence of the human body 5 Nov. 2007
By Bookworm2 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Alexander Lowen writes an intelligent piece of literature. He explains in detail how depression is alienation from one's body. A real eye-opener.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Worthy of anyone's time! 24 Jun. 2014
By Michael Widdowson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Deeper insight into the bioenergetic analysis process. Deeper insight into what spirituality is really all about, and what that spirituality has to offer!!
In praise of A.Lowen, Depression & The Body. 13 Mar. 2014
By Lynn - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A.Lowen's explanation of depression was a totally new approach for me. It made sense & allowed me to see the possibilities in his method of working with this condition.
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