The December days that start with the number 2—that is, starting from the 20th—are like a train with batteries on a closed circuit. They pass, with the twinkle of LEDs, like carriages loaded with emotions about the past, about the future and about the present, with nostalgia and regret, with delight, and with fear and worry: a mixture that we enjoy with the thought that this must be the bittersweet taste of life.
Imagine yourself entering a shopping mall with your sunglasses on. Even though the lights are shining brightly, you cannot see them. Everything around you is dark and cold. But as soon as you remove your glasses, the world comes alive: the windows of the shops shine attractively, you see the brightly-coloured clothes, and the dazzling screen of the phone blinks with an incoming message.
When confronted with someone else’s strong emotions—intense joy or heartbreaking pain—we often do not know how to react. In the case of joy, the other person usually doesn't mind, because his feelings console him. But in the case of pain, things are completely different. Misunderstood suffering can make the sufferer isolate himself from the very people who could help him. So, how can we really help someone who is suffering?
Five decades ago, when the World Organization for Social Psychiatry was established, many thought it was a joke. Others, being more analytical, tried to prove that mental illness can only be an individual experience; that the problem always exists only in an individual and never in a group.
The concept of self care—defined as the entirety of ways in which a person understands how to solve their emotional problems and manage their anxieties—has become a real movement in the past two years with an entire industry ready to make our lives easier and more comfortable. For Christians, however, this trend has proven to be quite problematic: making our lives easier is in conflict with the biblical instruction to carry our cross every day. But the need to somehow manage stress and anxiety is real.
There have now been over 12 million cases of COVID-19 infection globally, and half a million deaths. Researchers are constantly looking for new and better information to reduce the uncertainty around the virus.
A smooth sea never gave a skilled sailor, said Franklin D. Roosevelt, suggesting that without hardship, challenges and even failures, we cannot become our best selves.
The American Economic Review recently published the results of the largest randomized study ever conducted to measure the impact on the quality of life that deactivation ones Facebook account might have.
“You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you”, said the prophet Isaiah, and some jumped to the conclusion that those who do not experience peace do so because they lack a sound mind or faith.