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Addiction Treatment Blog by Addiction Experts » Spirituality

My Path to Sobriety and Gratefulness

  After being in rehab for over five months and achieving sobriety, I have finally turned my cell phone back on. However, my old friends and connections back home where I was involved in the drug scene were unaware of this. This is not to say I haven’t been in contact with my friends. I am the type of drug addict who compartmentalizes his addiction. I have some really good friends whom I will always stay in contact with no matter what. On the other hand there has always been another area of friends who I am solely involved with due to drug use.  As much as I try to compartmentalize these two aspects of my life, they occasionally cross paths. This happened today. About thirty minutes ago I received a phone call … Read entire article »

Filed under: Addiction, Alcohol and Drugs, Life, Recovery, Spirituality, Substance Abuse

Mindfulness Meditation and Addiction

Mindfulness Meditation and Addiction

  New research suggests that mindfulness meditation helps people to reduce tobacco use and manage stress, according to scientists Michael Posner and Yi-Yuan Tang. It has long been established that addiction to drugs, alcohol, and even cigarettes involves a specific area of the brain related to self-control. This area, which is located in the fronto-median cortex, has been studied by researchers using brain scans and other brain imaging methods. In a recent study conducted by scientists at … Read entire article »

Filed under: Addiction, Latest News, Recovery, Research, Spirituality

Addiction Treatment in America throughout History

  Approximately ten percent of the human population is addicted to mind-altering substances. Most of these people cannot stop using on their own and need help. Since the birth of America as a colony, addicts have sought help to stop using through various treatment methods, and some have remained viable for centuries. The first known self-help groups in America were conducted by Native Americans, who had been living on American soil for thousands of years prior to white settlement. Europeans brought a flurry of new ideas, technology, and culture with them to the new world. Unfortunately, these settlers also brought alcohol with them. The introduction of colonists and their alcohol in the lives of Native Americans proved to be devastating. Today, some theories suggest Native American people are genetically susceptible to addiction. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Addiction, Alcohol and Drugs, Recovery, Research, Spirituality

Pope Francis Takes Firm Stance against Drug Legalization

  Pope Francis took the opportunity to speak out against the legalization of drugs while on a landmark trip to Brazil in July. During Francis’ first trip to back to South America, where he is from, the Pope urged regional leaders to take a firm stance against drug legalization plans in Latin America. Pope Francis denounced the illegal drug trade as well, condemning drug dealers and drug traffickers. “How many dealers of death there are that follow the logic of money and power at any cost! The scourge of drug trafficking, that favors violence and sows the seeds of suffering and death, requires of society as a whole an act of courage,” he said. He also urged people to overcome the roots of the drug epidemic while on the third day of his … Read entire article »

Filed under: Addiction, Alcohol and Drugs, Latest News, Recovery, Spirituality

Can Kids Be Too Religious? Obsessive Behavior May Signify Mental Illness

  One of the roles of parents is to encourage healthy, positive activities in the lives of their children.  Many parents of religious children will encourage their children to partake in religious activity, whether as part of family tradition or because they believe that it brings comfort and improves the overall well-being of the child.  Unfortunately, not all religious activity is healthy, as hyper-religiosity may be a sign of a deeper mental illness issue.  “[Hyper-religiosity] looks positive but could be negative,” says Stephanie Mihalas, a UCLA professor and licensed clinical psychologist (Russo). According to Dr. Patrick Fagan of the Heritage Foundation, practicing religion promotes the well-being of individuals, families, and even the community.  Religion can be a positive force in the lives of both children and adults, according to Dr. Bill Hathaway, … Read entire article »

Filed under: Conditions and Disorders, Latest News, Research, Spirituality

How Religion Can Negatively Affect the Mental Health of Gays and Lesbians

How Religion Can Negatively Affect the Mental Health of Gays and Lesbians

  Religion is prevalent almost everywhere. Although the number of atheists is on the rise, they are still very much in the minority. In the United States, the majority of people identify as Christian. Their views can range from very liberal, yet still believing in Christ and the Bible, to very extreme, where they take parts of the Bible literally and take on extreme right social views. A significant number of Christians believe homosexuality is a sin … Read entire article »

Filed under: Spirituality

Our Daily Bread

Our Daily Bread

  Eternity is made up of an endless amount of todays.  There is no yesterday or tomorrow… just today.  The terms “just for today” or “one day at a time” may be clichés in AA, but the importance of today is one that I want to dive into.  The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous says “we are not cured of alcoholism.  What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual … Read entire article »

Filed under: Recovery, Spirituality

Bill W. and LSD: Taking a Trip, Not Taking a Trip

  If you see the 12-steps as simply means to get sober, or find happiness, you’re going to be disappointed.  Sobriety, obviously, is a vital factor, and happiness is a byproduct, but the purpose of the 12-steps is to bring about a spiritual experience, or awakening, inducing a psychic change pervasive enough that it ultimately works to diminish one’s obsession with self – the ego.  Ego, as I am using it, is to represent that self-centered, selfish, self-worshipping, infantile part of each alcoholic, of each human, that turns his self-importance into spiritually-isolating self-destruction.  In his paper The Ego Factors in Surrender in Alcoholism, Harry Tiebout, M.D. writes, “it is the ego which is the arch-enemy of sobriety, and it is the ego which must be disposed of if the individual is … Read entire article »

Filed under: Recovery, Spirituality

Recovery without God

Recovery without God

  A recent study performed by Harvard University’s McLean Hospital looking into the recovery process concludes that “faith in God positively influences treatment for individuals with psychiatric illness.”  While the belief in a God, often euphemized as “Higher Power” in many mental health and addiction recovery communities, is promoted heavily especially in 12-step programs, it is not for everyone and recovery is possible without this approach.  I prefer a more personalized approach based on self-empowerment and … Read entire article »

Filed under: Life, Recovery, Spirituality, Substance Abuse

Santa Fe Church uses Controversial Psychedelic Tea

Santa Fe Church uses Controversial Psychedelic Tea

  A small religious congregation in Santa Fe has been receiving a lot of recent attention after opening up to NPR about their use of psychedelic tea for gaining spirituality. The official União do Vegetal (translates to “union of the plants”) religion came about in 1961 in the country of Brazil. Since then, it has grown to about 17,000 people. The majority of people in this practice live in Brazil. However, the United States does have a … Read entire article »

Filed under: Alcohol and Drugs, Spirituality