Addiction and Presence

We are all addicted.

Addiction bears the handwriting of the ego. It takes a desire, a fixation, and it builds a stronghold around it. The energy of addiction is directed outward and it’s purpose is distraction. Distraction from all that is unpleasant, painful or uncomfortable. It is a choice, between being addicted or being present. How can I be addicted and conscious at the same time ? Awareness cancels out addiction, it is safe, it is easy and it works in 100% of the cases.

But there is one condition – dissolving an addiction means to be willing to  embrace the darkness too. It means to place honesty over the illusion, it means to face one’s fears and shadows. It means to detach from the lies we keep telling ourself, because we want to feel safe.

Addiction is our compulsion to remain with what we know.  Do you rather want to be safe, or continue to hold on to a false refuge.  It is your choice.

About Michaela

I am a wanderer and a wonderer, like you are. I love our journey and to walk in the company of friends – to learn, experience, share, laugh, cry and above all I simply love this marvelous, magical, mysterious life. I have no plan (cannot believe I am saying this) and my only intention is to be truthful to myself and others.
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7 Responses to Addiction and Presence

  1. Carl says:

    This is a great take on it. In addition to awareness, I need to be able to surrender. Without surrender, I am left with awareness and self-hatred.

    • Michaela says:

      Yes, letting go means to say yes. It means to become aware of my own resistance and simply be with it, without following the easy way out – which is the impulse of the addiction. May it be alcohol, drugs, a smoke or – hating myself.

  2. fatima says:

    Dear Marille,

    In ordinary terms, a perfectly sound point of view and one that is very much aligned with today’s popular wisdom. lol so in a way you have the whole egoic system on your side. Just occurred to me. I am learning not to trust my thoughts about stuff so lets talk.

    Are you equating addiction and habit? I am, we are not talking about drugs, alcohol or gambling here (or maybe on some level we are). Addiction/habit seems to be the driving force of the human condition except when we admit that we are helpless and, essentially ‘give over’ to the higher power. I believe you even said that above. It always gets confusing when you are swinging around in the branches of the ego.

    Interesting to note here that all communities have thier norms, rules of social and moral etiquette (or lack thereof) which are quickly learned and followed by the members of the tribe, religion, group, family and these have developed or ordained for the good of the human society/community of man. Islamic societies to my knowledge do not have drinking, drug, or gambling problems. These particularly destructive elements of the nafs or ‘forbidden’ explicitly for the obvious reasons. Smoking and drinking coffee are not, which is not to say that either of them are good….more likely just another part of the material world to be dis-identified with.

    You said, “How can I be addicted and conscious at the same time ?” I ask you, how can I think, have an opinion and be conscious at the same time? Is that different?

    You said, “The energy of addiction is directed outward and it’s purpose is distraction. Distraction from all that is unpleasant, painful or uncomfortable.”

    I would rephrase that to: The energy of addiction/habit is undirected and it’s purpose is to maintain egoic construct. It ‘s purpose is distraction period. Forget unpleasant, painful whatever…just distraction. It is a tool of and part of the ego and or painbody….maybe. How does Ekhart say to deal with the ego?

    I definitely feel resistance to what I perceive as social pressure here. How I do I feel when I have the thought “I cannot buy into this happy little band.”? Byron Katie here I come.

    Bless you for your ever loving persistence. 🙂

  3. Michaela says:

    Ah, sister Fatima….too much t.h.i.n.k.i.n.g…whiiiizzz…whhhizzzzz..whhiiiirrrr

    Addiction = habit plus compulsion. Difference being – I have habit of drinking a coffee in the morning, but would not go crazy if I ran out of coffee beans.

    The experience of feeling helpless without the world coming to an end, is the turning point. The addiction is supposed to keep you safe, and it fails…

    Bringing consciousness to the addictive behaviour is the end of it. Try it out. Sit with the craving and see what happens.

    When I say the energy is directed outwardly, it is to emphasise that this is in opposition of the “yield” energy going within.

    Have a cigarette and smoke consciously !!

    LoL 🙂

  4. fatima says:

    Thanks dear friend, I will try it. lol

    Remember that I actually give up cigarettes and coffee from dawn to dusk, for one month for over thirty years. Not my will but Thine. I have never understood how that was possible – for me specifically, since I have an abysmal record in the self-help department. I know many others in the same situation but often they have headaches, cravings, thirst……I have ……nothing. It is always easy in a way. A continual source of wonder to me. And a blessing.

    “I should not smoke.” How do I feel if I have that thought? “I don’t need to smoke.” How do I feel if I have that thought? “Smoking is harmful to me.”? Who?

    To much thinking? Really? I will go digest for a while.

    I will entertain it all, sometimes I am unattached.

    love you.

    • Michaela says:

      Well, you do not really give up – you give it a break…that is the difference. But here you have the “trick” to addiction – you have to find something that is more important than the pull of the ego. In this case it is the purification of the fast. Secondly, during fasting your metabolism changes and what makes it easier is that you change the routine. What I am saying is, if you bring presence to the smoking, you have the same effect.

      ” I should not smoke”….how does it make you FEEL ?? Haha

      Love you too

  5. addictiondownfall says:

    Hi I agree with your opening statement and I agree with your comment that to stay with an urge and see it through enables you to see what staying in the proesent means. For me when I am faced with urges I just focus on my breath, total single minded focus and I then find that I am no longer involved with the addiction or with the urge I am just my breath. My aim for this year is to write a suggestion a day to try to help myself and others stay on the path of recovery. I am also interested in spiritual exploration of addiction and if, as I think, the world runs on fear or love then addiciton is an opportunity for me to confront fear and from that to access love.

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