As someone who lost his birth-mother to her own addictions, this topic hits home.
As someone who relates to “addictions” beyond the chemical, and sees addictive personalities and behaviors affecting every corner of ego-rooted existence, this topic hits home.
To paraphrase, in his Moral Letters, Seneca comments that we have to be rid of our addictions since they are negative behaviors that we believe to be, somehow, beneficial. He continues to say that if we do not, our Courage (which needs daily testing and trial) will disappear, and that the greatness of our soul is based on the ability to turn away from the “popular” and the “in crowd” perspectives… since it’s RARE that the cool thing to do is be disciplined. (74.12b-13)
When what was one a harmless indulgence begins to run our lives, it’s no longer harmless.
Coffee, sugar, drugs, attitudes, perspectives… when taken to the extreme, control us. They whittle away at our personal freedoms, agency, and authority.
Addiction is what happens when we lose the ability to say “no”.
Clear-understanding and self-control can never be ours if we are continually deluded by our addictions. Ever.
Anything we believe to be wise and clear, while we are embroiled in addiction, is naught but an illusion… and hypocritical.
I’m sitting at my desk, writing this piece… while drinking my morning coffee.
As I sip and write, I consider where my life is not mine because of my own addictions… and I peer into addiction and see its beating heart: ego.
Comfort and insecurity keep ego around… and thus, keep us in our addictions, myself included.
Something to sit with over a dose of your (insert addiction here), no?
(See y’all tomorrow)