It is arguable that all of us are addicts. Problems only arise when the addiction is detrimental to health. It is also arguable that the ‘abuse’ of a healthy action or substance in an addictive manner may in fact be beneficial. Frequent visits to a church, temple or mosque could be considered an addiction, especially if it changes one’s life. Provided that religious fanaticism does not set in, this could be considered a non-destructive addiction. Can we extrapolate this to the use of alcohol? Do two or three gin and tonics each evening to shrug off the day and engender a relaxed feeling for the evening constitute addiction? One may argue that if it is felt to be beneficial then it may be an addiction but is not one that is harmful.. On the other hand, would we do better without the toxins, but then the issue becomes to ‘do better’ or to be more content?
You can see that the discussion is tricky, with tangent after tangent proffering itself for philosophical discussion. I feel that treatment for addiction depends very much on establishing whether one is addicted or not. If the answer is ‘yes’ to any of the following questions, then my recommendations should be studied.
Is there anything that you do or take that you wish you did not?
Is there anything that you do or take that others wish you did not?
Is your life negatively affected by something you do or take?
Is somebody else’s life negatively affected by something you do or take?
Is your health or fitness affected by something you do or take?
Have you had to debate any of the above questions to reach the conclusion ‘no’?
If you have answered ‘yes’ to any of the above, then you are probably an addict and would benefit from changing.
There is no simple answer to breaking an addiction, and fighting the battle by yourself is slow and often ineffective.
Establish a rapport with a counsellor you like. There are no ‘good or bad’ points to look for when choosing a psychologist. If you get on with the professional you have your initial starting point.
Consult a Bach flower remedy manual to establish the best remedy to keep in your pocket at all times.
Use the following homeopathic remedies depending upon your addiction: for alcohol addiction – use Lycopodium 200 nightly for one week; for tobacco addiction – use Tabacum 200 nightly for two weeks. For the following addictive substances obtain homeopathic potency 200 of the recommended remedy and use nightly for seven nights. Further recommendations must come from a homeopath: cannabis addiction, take Cannabis indicus; cocaine addiction, take coca; heroin addiction, take Morphinum; addiction to ecstasy, LSD and other manufactured drugs requires a high potency of the corresponding remedy, available through homeopaths or homeopathic pharmacies.
Eastern philosophies regard reincarnation to be an important aspect of health. With regard to addiction, the philosophy is the same. To reach Nirvana one must free one’s spirit of all shackles. Addiction is a tie to the mental and physical plane and must be dealt with to be ‘free’ or enlightened. This is not a religious concept, more a spiritual one, but even strong religious dogmas such as Christianity will place an abuser in ‘Hell’, suggesting as usual a strong tie-in between Eastern and Western theology.
Do not fight addiction alone. Get help from a specialist, a support group (including Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous), and a complementary medical practitioner.
When dealing with addiction, learn a meditation technique that is suitable for you. This maybe transcendental, a personal technique taught to you or an active form such as yoga, Tai Chi or Qi Gong. Dealing with the mental and physiological aspects is only two-thirds of being released from addiction.
Dealing with an addict
Living with an addict, being related to an addict, befriending or loving an addict is a situation that requires help in itself. Addiction is not just about the addict. There are one million registered alcoholics and drug addicts in the UK. If each one has a parent, a lover, a child, a brother or sister and a best friend, we can estimate that five million people are directly influenced by an addict. If you consider that only one in five people register or realize they are an addict we have anywhere from 5 million to 25 million (nearly half the population) influenced by addiction. An addict without a will to change and the support structure to do so will continue to be socially disruptive by being deceitful, untrustworthy, violent, changeable, vindictive and hateful. The addict will lie, cheat and steal, all beyond their control and all with a self-hatred that overpowers the care and love that those affected can offer.
Do not try to solve this yourself. Professionals fail, so you probably will.
Seek help for the addict if they wish but, importantly, contact a support group for yourself via your GP or complementary clinical therapist.