'Self-hatred' versus God's love in depression: Archbishop Justin Welby testifies

“My own experience with depression, one of the symptoms of it is self-loathing, self-loathing, a real vicious feeling of self-loathing. And that seems very strange when combined with the deep feeling that I am loved by God. »

Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby spoke on a new broadcast of the with the BBC, The Archbishop Interviews, about the depression he suffered in 2019.

In this first episode, Justin Welby interviewed the Anglo-Turkish novelist and political scientist Elif Shafak. Among the topics covered are those of faith and depression.

The Archbishop of Canterbury then spoke about his own experience of depression and what for him is a symptom of it, namely, “self-hatred”.

“My own experience with depression, one of the symptoms of it is self-loathing, self-loathing, a real vicious feeling of self-loathing. »

A feeling all the more strange according to him, since as a Christian, this symptom is combined with that of the love that God had for him.

“And it feels very strange when it combines with the deep feeling that I am loved by God. In my life, it almost expressed itself as a safety net. I was saying in my prayers, I may be this terrible person, this failure as Archbishop, whatever it is, but I know You know me better than I know myself and You always love. And by that I am supported. »

“I went for help and it made a huge difference,” he says in conclusion.

MC

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