Monday, November 06, 2006

Addiction and Grace

I was recently thinking about all the people I know who are addicted to something, whether that be drinking, smoking, sex, work, washing their hands, or all of the above, sometimes at once. This got me thinking about the causes of addictions. They clearly exist to fill some void, create some sort of security blanket for people to clutch to, because we all need that. So, are addictions inevitable? My theory is no -that trust can enable a person to let go. Trust in society, or fellow man, or God (the Church) or whatever you want to call it. You have to able to let go of that security blanket and allow yourself to fall into the great unknown with faith the something will pick you up....Well, that's the short of it at least. I've just launched into a book entitled Addiction and Grace - Love and Spirituality in the Healing of Addictions, that I hope will provide some more insights. It's written by a psychiatrist, Gerald G. May, M.D., and for some reason the previews just seem to connect with me and my state of mind. So I bought a used copy on Amazon.

I just finished the preface and came across this nugget: ..."major addiction is the sacred disease of our time." Not sure what that means, but I like the way it sounds. More on this topic later.




Ed Mahonovich said...

I'm only addicted to two things - Doritos and Ralph's Place. Sometimes I indulge in both at the same time.

Ralph said...

At Ralph's place, we're attempting to build a community that can be used as a support group to fight the power of addiction... that's right "Fight the Power," bro'.

DocTorDee said...

We live in spiritually empty times. Instead of pursuing spiritual fulfillment on a daily basis, we pursue money and power. Money and power are helpful for living in the US in 2006, but they are empty of spirit.

We partake in addictive behavior as a way to numb ourselves or distract ourselves from fear of the emptiness. When, in reality, we should be learning how to embrace the emptiness and actually meditate on it.

Read James Frazier's Golden Bough for more on ancient spiritual practices that have gone by the wayside as a result of the industrial revolution.


Ralph said...

I like the thought of embracing the emptiness. You're right, there probably is a lot of fear associated with emptiness, which leads to my theorey about needing people to help you cross through that emptiness, embrace it, and not be afraid. You're right, addiction helps remove one from the emptiness at least temporarily, however, its temporary nature is the problem. I'll have to check out the Golden Bough some day, as it's been recommended by at least three quality scholars that I know.