Monday, November 11, 2013

Overcoming Addiction

Have you ever watched To Catch a Predator, the Dateline-NBC show with Chris Hansen? The show that breaks for commercial with the guy lying face down on the ground and a large policeman’s knee in his back.

More Dateline-NBC Busts

These men, the ones busted on Dateline-NBC, don’t seem able to control themselves. And that’s the real story. That after being on the air for months, with all the attendant publicity and buzz around the program, men still show up to meet the 13-year old girl. They are willing to risk everything. Like moths to a flame, they can’t help themselves. They’re addicted.

The first step to overcoming any type of addiction is admitting. Without admitting, the addict simply rationalizes his behavior or makes up lies. But with the police waiting outside with drawn guns and transcripts of the chat logs, there is little wriggle room.

Part of the admitting process is understanding the addiction. But rational people don’t always act rationally; understanding addiction is only part of the solution. In fact, many addicts go back to the chat room as soon as they are released by the police.

However, not every addict ends up in desperate straights. That’s why it’s so hard to admit to addiction. It’s easy to fool yourself and others. But the curtain always comes crashing down — eventually.

The problem is we don’t have a good grasp of what addiction really is. Is it a behavioral anomaly or a disease? Until now, we’ve tended to separate addictions into two categories, one behavioral, the other substance-based. But what if all addictions: those in the substance category that we term diseases like cigarettes, alcohol, or drugs and those in the behavioral category that we term moral failures like gambling, eating, shopping, or sex all stem from the same type of brain activity?

According to New Scientist writer Helen Phillips, “Several studies of the brain and behavior back the idea that there’s very little difference between what goes on in the head of a gambling addict and that of a crack addict. Yet, there’s a common perception that overindulgence in certain behaviors is all down to individual choice. If you are overeating, oversexed, gambling away your earnings or spending all you time online, you are more likely to be considered morally abhorrent than the victim of a disease. Calling these problems ‘addictions’ has triggered debates about whether our society or our biology is to blame.”

Substance addictions have attendant withdrawal consequences, from physical indicators like sweats, nausea, cramps to psychological problems like hallucinations, depression, and moodiness. Alcohol sufferers experience DTs; drug addicts can expect physical breakdown and “cold turkey” sessions; cigarette smokers are so hooked that even a serious lung condition is not enough to make them quit. According to researchers, behavioral addicts suffer the same symptoms.

Drug addicts have drug addiction treatment centers to seek help from, while those afflicted with various behavioral addictions also have addiction facilities that specialize in dealing with such issues. 

Yet in many instances, the consequences of behavioral addictions are in some ways even harsher. For overeating there is rejection, radical surgery, diabetes, and social ostracism. For gambling there’s prison, debt collection, financial ruin. For sex addicts, the ones who commit serious crimes, there is sterilization, castration or prison. Yes, in case you didn’t know it, radical solutions like castration are widely discussed and promoted.

Because he hasn’t been caught in some serious transgression, the addict keeps coming back for more, especially since, as cited by New Scientist writer, Helen Phillips, “both drugs of abuse and pleasurable behaviors trigger the release of the same chemicals (dopamine) and gene regulators in the brain.”

So what do research, medicine, psychology, yes, and even law enforcement, offer sex addicts in the way of remedies? A variety of tools and treatments, from therapy to medication to sterilization to castration. Some of the therapies actually suggest that abstinence be part of the treatment. Abstinence?

Abstinence is the equivalent of relying on the little voice in the back of the head every time a person tells a lie, or every time an alcoholic ends up in the gutter, or every time a thief holds up a liquor store. Yes, the little voice is there all right, but the liar, the alcoholic, and the thief have long ago pushed the Mute Button. Their addiction has drowned out the voice in the back of the head.

Well, many of the men who appear on Dateline-NBC seem normal. Many are talented, creative, and gainfully employed: doctors. Rabbis, teachers. The only thing holding them back from completely functional lives is their obsessions.

To break an addiction, we need a technique that doesn’t rely on the voice in the back of the head, the conscience as some call it. But, you say, that’s impossible because you just said the sexual addict is unable to obey any moral imperative. Is there a treatment the addict can self-administer? And, if there is, why would he choose it?

The harder he works to satisfy the urges that rouse him, the longer he continues to evade admitting his problem, the less he’ll be looking for treatment. But if he gets to the point of admitting and wants to take control of his own destiny, to avoid entering the system and its enforced treatment programs that include: therapy, medication, prison, sterilization, and castration, there is sublimation. A process whose side effects are wholly positive and whose cost in dollars is zero.

Does the sublimation process change the way a person fantasizes over his obsessions? No, it’s not possible to take over someone’s fantasies and redirect them. That was the theme of Stanley Kubrick’s famous film, Clockwork Orange, using drugs and punishment to reprogram an offender. It didn’t work; reprogramming blows the mind. Rather than reprogramming the mind — a process that kills creativity — sublimation diverts the sexual energy into the brain. Implemented successfully, it changes the arousal patterns the individual feels. How does sublimation work?

Instead of flooding the brain with dopamine, the addict’s reward for pressing the "pleasure button," the body’s chemical substances are recombined and used for worthier purposes, such as self-healing, overcoming addiction, and expanding consciousness. All addicts — dopers, drinkers, smokers, eaters, gamblers, shoppers, lechers — pursue their addiction to trigger the dopamine response. That’s right, the reward takes place in the brain, not the penis, or the stomach, or any other part of the body. The craving that starts in the mind is the brain’s pleading for dopamine.

Sublimation, too, affects brain chemistry, but in a different way. Proper sexual sublimation diverts the seminal fluid up the spinal column into the brain. The introduction of this new element into the brain changes the brain chemistry such that the organ itself is completely transformed. Once transformed, the addict’s consciousness as well as his attitudes and worldview changes, too. He has the chance of starting over. Rebirth. Rediscovery. Recovery. The new Being.

Think of it as an opportunity to grow, to become the REAL you. Read Gopi Krishna's Kundalini: The Evolutionary Energy in Man and other books about awakening experiences. Notice I use the work "awakening." That's because Kundalini promotes a complete makeover, not just physical, but mental, psychic, emotional, spiritual. The "awakening" is just the beginning. There are years of learning and accepting, until he finally realizes the Kundalini energy has his best interests at heart.

If this addict — on the threshold of a Kundalini awakening — could look back at himself as he is today from a time 40 years in the future, he'd wonder who the person was that was so obsessed with sex and say to himself, "What a waste of good semen! All that porn, all that lust, all that wasted sexual energy! I could have been using it to build the REAL me."

But how does an addict, in the full denial of his addiction, find any information on self-realization, much less information on Kundalini? It's the smallest needle (no pun intended) in the largest haystack. Add to this the addict's blindness to everything besides his addiction and the odds seem impossible. And yet, many addicts are spiritual people. They're just looking for salvation in the wrong places. If they could only get a glimpse of their alternate Self — a higher consciousness version of their Being — thanks to a momentary encounter with the Energy Continuum, they might work their way free of their affliction. 

Sublimation utilizes no instruments, no surgical procedures, no medication. It requires no sworn oaths of chastity. For me, it was the result of Golden Flower Meditation. I used this method over forty years ago; it changed my entire being. The whole and complete method is discussed and elaborated on in my book, Deciphering the Golden Flower One Secret at a Time.

So, what does this method entail? Basically learning to breathe in a certain manner during meditation practice, a voluntary physical action which in turn produces a series of reactions that culminate in the activation of the dormant Kundalini mechanism. No more, no less. It’s an entirely physical process.

And it doesn't end there. If you can't meditate, for whatever reason, there are other means of activating Kundalini, other ways to trigger sublimation.

So what happens when the Kundalini process runs its course? First, Kundalini doesn’t just change your body; it changes your entire being. Living with Kundalini makes your body sensitive to negative stimuli: alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, bad food. Any ingestible substance that might harm your body. One by one your addictions drop away. You’ll know exactly which substances harm your body and you’ll take steps to avoid them.

In addition, you’ll begin to make better life decisions. The fact that you are no longer addicted clears the mind. Gradually, you become a better decision maker and problem solver. You are more able to live in the moment. The sublimation process changed my being and personality. It produced a complete creative repurposing of brain chemistry. The very chemical process that once marked me for addiction was altered. Instead of dopamine — the brain chemical addicts crave — my brain was fed a new substance, an elixir distilled from seminal fluid. Sounds strange, perhaps, but if you long for a healthier life and greater overall creativity, you’ll marvel at its restorative properties.


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