Understanding Addiction & Finding Freedom From It

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freedom-of-compulsions-habits-and-addictions-paulo-zerbato“There is no chemical solution to a spiritual problem.”-Unknown

Addiction is undoubtedly something that has plagued our society. It seems you can’t really go anywhere and find someone who has not been affected in one way or another by it. Whether it be, ourselves, that has struggled with it or a family or friend, everyone who has been in touch with the monster of addiction can agree on one thing… it isn’t easy to overcome.

Addiction comes in varying degrees, from the person who can’t quite throw out the cigarettes once and for all to the person who is spending their last dollar trying to get their next fix. And it is the various shades of gray in between these two extremes that most people find themselves. Unfortunately, many people believe that they would have to be lying in an alley way with a needle hanging out of their arm before they would be willing to admit they were addicted to something.

However, this denial stage is how most stay stuck inside their addictions. What many people don’t care to admit to themselves is that they are taking or doing something that is having a negative effect on their lives. Now, yes, it can be alcohol, drugs – the most common things we associate an “addiction” with, or it can be sex, gambling, food, relationships, shopping, video games and many other things as well.

Addiction is something that doctors and scientists alike have studied for quite some time, yet there is no “cure”. Presently, there are two ways that society looks at addiction. One is as a disease, kind of like cancer, that there is no cure for but can be treated to inhibit the progress of the disease. In this view, an addict is looked at as someone who will always be an addict, like someone who has a terminal illness that has no cure but will always have that disease.

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The other way society views an addict is as a junkie, criminal, menace to society type. In this view the addict is dismissed as some sort of a “bad guy” that is inherently evil therefore they go around stealing and lying. It’s safe to say that neither way of looking at it seems to be working. The problem of addiction in this world seems to be just as bad if not worse as it ever was. Perhaps it’s time to take a new look at addiction and the reason why so many still suffer from this affliction.

Are you an addict? (the answer may surprise you) freedomimage2

“I used to think a drug addict was someone who lived on the far edges of society. Wide-eyed, shaved-headed and living in a filthy squat. That was until I became one…” ~ Cathryn Kemp

Before we can quit an addiction we must first be willing to admit to ourselves that we are in fact addicted to something. We cannot change a problem we won’t even acknowledge that we have.
As mentioned above, addiction comes in varying degrees. And just because you may not be robbing people in order to get the money for your next hit doesn’t mean you aren’t addicted to something.

People define addiction in all sorts of ways but the two most important questions one must ask themselves in order to determine if they are, in fact, an addict are: “Is there something I want to or have tried to quit on my own but can’t?” and “Is my life being negatively affected by my behavior?” To answer these two questions we must be extremely honest with ourselves. Often we hear people say things like, “Oh I could quit if I really wanted to.”

And often this is used as a justification or an excuse. The second question will help us to determine if the behavior is something that is actually making our life worse. If that behavior was taken away, would our family life improve? Would our work performance get better? Would we feel happier and better about ourselves? If the answer to these is, “yes”, it’s quite possible that we are addicted to something. Once we have determined that there is something that we would like to quit we can then start to dig a little further.

Re-connecting with ourselvesfreedomimage3

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“Every addiction, no matter what it is, is the result of trying to escape from something by going in the direction of a need that is not currently being met. In order to move past our addiction, we have to figure out what we are trying to use our addiction to get away from and what need we are trying to use our addiction to meet.”-Teal Swan

From a spiritual and metaphysical perspective, everything is energy which includes our addiction. In our truest sense, we are completely fulfilled and have no need to crave anything. So,energetically, the craving of something must be stemming from the subconscious belief that there is some need that is not being met therefore we must look “out” in order to find something to fill the void. In simple terms, the more disconnected one becomes from their authentic nature, the more disconnected they feel with others, and they begin to constantly try and find something to distract them from or to numb the pain.

And so the cycle begins, disconnection from our true nature leads to unhappiness, unhappiness leads to pain, in order to run from the pain the addict numbs it by indulging in their whatever addiction one has, indulging leads to shame, shame leads to pain, and you can see how the vicious circle continues. Since love is not only what we are but also energetically the highest vibration, it is safe to say that as one re-connects with their true nature (love) the less they will feel the need to numb any sort of pain.

The first step in this process is to acknowledge the emotions that are our “trigger” emotions, and trigger meaning the emotions that cause us to want to indulge in the addiction. As we meet each emotion with compassion and empathy almost as if each one is a different aspect of our inner child that has never been loved or maybe even acknowledged before, we find that these emotions will begin to heal all on their own, and soon will rarely pop into our being.freedomimage4 As we offer love to the unhealed parts of our psyche we begin the process of loving ourselves out of addiction. Soon, loving ourselves causes us to find friends and hobbies that resonate with our new vibration vs. the old one that was stuck in shame, guilt and fear.

As we begin to re-connect with our hearts, we re-connect with the world and it injects into us a new found purpose in life. Rather than running from pain, we begin to welcome all emotions in with open arms. When our hearts are simply loved, there will no longer be a logical need to harm ourselves. A life filled with love (which has to be towards ourselves first) joy, and genuine connections to others is ultimately how someone energetically transforms from an addict to a completely fulfilled human being. The video below explains this concept and offers a fresh perspective on how we treat addicts in this day and age.

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Addiction
Paulo Zerbato
Internet Addiction

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