According to Jaak Panksepp, in the twentieth century there were two influences that kept the mainstream thinking far from the elaboration of a consistent reflection about the emotional structure of man. The first was behaviorism, which refused to take into account the content of thought since it is not objectively measurable, with the result of promoting the study of behavior and of all the material side of human life. Subsequently, the road towards the understanding of emotional dimension was blocked by the so-called cognitive view of man. This emerged from the metaphor of the mind as a computer, according a privilege to the highest linguistic-rational functions in respect to the underlying emotional roots.
One cannot fix a broken leg by reflection, and in a similar way depression is a physical disease and one cannot fix it with a simple reasoning. At the same time, depression is the result of a stratification of wrong habits of behavior and thinking. For this reason, depression can be faced with reason, but not with that reason that shows the black judgments of the depressed person to be void, yet with the reason that tells us which habits we can change in order to remove the systematic conditions which provoked depression. And when I write habits, it is better to repeat it, I mean both physical behaviors and concepts used to read the world.
Following this, depression appears to be characterized by a double nature. On one side it is a concrete issue, much more solid than single reasonings made up by worlds, on the other side one can attack depression by assuming a suitable vision of the world and keeping it for a long time, so that this vision can stratify its effects in all the regions of our experience.