How does depression occur? Most depression stems from guilt. (There are other facilitators such as a poor non-tayyab diet, environment, genetics and a lack of connection with the Creator, and a negation or ignorance of Qadaa wal Qadar which is a part of Emaan)
Guilt may be from many sources: Guilt of not having done enough or having done a lot and having failed at it and or the guilt of having done stuff, which is rankling in the back of ones, mind. Sometimes one is not even aware consciously of the loss and the guilt piles up and makes one sad and depressed.
What are sins, transgressions and oppression? These are actions that we commit everyday which result in guilt at some level of our consciousness. Many of us successfully suppress sins, transgressions and oppressions but like a pressure cooker it causes depression by bottling up these acts, which eventually blow the top. (Such as the top Wall Street committing suicide despite having all that money can provide).
Oppression or Dhulm is defined as taking away the God given right of someone or something. For example everyone has a right to have air to breath, thus stopping someone’s air and thus depriving him of breathing falls under dhulm.
Oppression can be against ones own self or against another. It may be deliberate or inadvertent.
Deliberate aggression and oppression of another stems from a sense of arrogance of perceived inherent power, why do I define it as perceived, because we know by tracing history that even the most powerful men and nations have at some point fallen on their noses. In the Quran Allah Subhanawataala invites us to go and take a tour of the world and walk around the sites of the fallen nations that at one time seemed invincible like the Pharaohs or the nabateans (Petra).
Oppression may be individual or collective, a group of people may oppress another weaker group (the whites oppressing the blacks in the USA), or it may be individual a person oppressing a worker under him or someone in his charge a child, a wife or a coworker.
The worst of the oppressions are against ones own self. Examples of this are abuse of ones body e.g. filling it with poison by drinking alcohol. Alcohol is a poison when we deliberately put it in our body whether it is once or on a regular basis then we are oppressing our own self harming our own self, this also happens when someone commits adultery or fornication and in the process contract a serious STD that kills them slowly or make them infertile such that they can never bear children ever.
Both are tragedies but worse that that is the effect that adultery has on the two household where numerous family members are hurt by the oppression by one person, or a couple.
Sometimes one oppresses others or oneself in ways that he or she may not be aware of. A simple example is eating non-halal or non-tayyab food, which then creates health issues and lead to a chronically ill person.
The biggest culprit in the war of oppression is arrogance and the perceived sense of power over others. Arrogance releases the predatory instincts in us and lets them go wild unhampered by temperance or fear of repercussions. Sometimes repercussion occur as a surprise but many a time the aggressor seems to be winning for some time until the tide changes and history tells us that no aggressor and no oppressor in the history of mankind ever survived nor attained happiness.
Abstract of Tafseer of Surah Noah 71:7-12 by Dr. Farhat Hashmi (alhudapk.com)
Allah Subhanawataala in surah Noah describes to Prophet Muhammad the 900 years of struggle of Prophet Noah to bring the word of Allah to his people most of whom remained recalcitrant. Yet he did not give up hope or effort.
He presented the power of Allah and His Unity by examples, by events, by nature, by the cycle of life in nature but they remained resistant.
The depressions that come from accumulated mistakes, guilt, and sense of sins can be eased by erasure of those acts.
Allah offers that as an example via Noah AS. Allah’s mercy is showered when we return to Allah by asking for Istighfaar (forgiveness). Or erasure or forgiveness of ones sins.
All past sins, oppressions, and those mistakes that rankle in our sub conscious and those we committed but have melded into a sense of sadness if genuinely regretted are all erased and eased by Istigfaar.
Allah Subhanawtaatal gives far more than forgiveness when he says: Do Istighfaar and you will be rewarded.
Allah truly loves us if when we return to him penitent promising never to oppress ourselves and others by which hurts other and us. He not only forgives us but also rewards us with the beauty of Jannah.
What more can we ask for?