While addiction is front-page news lately, it has been a companion of the human condition forever. Words such as “overdose” and “suicide” convey the desperate end game of addiction. Yet, there is a starting point, a source, much like the source of a river that one in the grip of addiction can journey to and find healing.
Addiction begins when one seeks freedom from pain; whether physical, emotional or mental. When a substance, activity, or person distracts the pain, even for a short time, a habit is formed to continually look to that source of relief when the pain returns.
The results of this common condition fill the media with endless stories of robberies, murders, divorces, abuses, and losses, as well as many less dramatic symtoms. What is it about the alleviation of pain, even for a few moments, that becomes so consuming that one ends up in the destruction of self and others?
This takes us back to the source of the river Addiction – pain. To repress pain is not healthy and it is clearly not a lasting solution to attempt to escape pain through pleasure or any other temporary distraction. The healthy way out of pain is to face it, learn from it and then heal it.
Metapsychiatry teaches that Truth liberates, Understanding transcends and Love heals.
The liberating Truth is that it is possible to heal pain because pain is a thought, and thoughts can change. Pain is expressing something. It has a meaning. It is not random.
The truth of this can be discovered when one suffering from pain chooses to look beyond the pain toward what it is expressing.
This is the Understanding that will transcend.
Asking the First Intelligent Question points us beyond the pain: What is the meaning of this pain? What is it expressing?
The fact that pain is painful reveals that pain is not our true nature. It is a severe “wakeup” that something in our life journey is not on the track of truth. Some way we perceive ourselves and our life is not the truth. It is good to heed the warning and listen closely to the message.
There are some clues about pain that are very helpful in the discovery process: Pain is an angry interaction thought. And anger is the emotional statement: “I’m not getting what I want!” “I don’t like what is happening.”
Focusing on getting, having and fixing keeps us in the cycle of pain.
The journey of liberation through understanding listens to the meaning of the symptom to face what we want and what we don’t want, what we like and what we don’t like.
Facing angry habits-of-thought makes it possible for Love to heal.
Healing is the return to our underlying wholeness. It is an interest in wholeness that heals, not the quest to stop the pain.
When consumed with anger every experience is viewed through the lens of wanting and not wanting. It seems so real, yet it is not. Allowing for this possibility allows transformation.
The Second Intelligent Question can be asked and answered: What is what really Is?
It can be discovered that we are not a jam-up of resentments, frustrations and wanting, but a river of love and true freedom. We had thought that pleasure and relief from pain constituted the good life, but that turned out not to be real.
The water is not in the pollution and the pollution is not in the water.
At the source of the river Truth it is possible to separate pollution from the purity of consciousness.