The idea is to look for a spiritual solution to an addiction problem, as this type of issue affects more than someone physically. Alcoholics Anonymous bases the 12-step program on 12 affirmations, or what they call 12 traditions. These expressions that help people recovering from addiction regain a spiritual footing once again. Doing so will give you a better idea of how a spiritual malady affects an alcoholic. Addiction is a spiritual disease because it represents an individual’s attempt to disconnect from reality and any sense of spirituality. Simply put, they feel a terrible loneliness at their very soul or center of being.
As you grow in your sobriety and learn more about yourself, you may find that your concept of a Higher Power changes as well. The most important thing is that you keep an open mind and heart as you continue on your sobriety journey. You should also try to find other people in AA who share your beliefs and struggles; they can provide support and fellowship as well as offer helpful advice. Just remember, even if you don’t share the same beliefs, everyone in AA are united by their shared experience with addiction and their desire to stay sober. In AA, one of the main goals is to become sober and stay sober. To do this, members must rely on their support system which includes other members, sponsors, and meetings.
Complicated Grief, Soul Loss, and the Dark Night of the Soul
In sobriety, if we are self-reliant we usually end up using anything that will make us feel good externally excessively. A spiritual malady can manifest itself in many different ways. For some, it may manifest as a feeling of being disconnected from others or as a sense of emptiness. For others, it may manifest as anger, anxiety, or depression.
- Spiritual awakenings don’t necessarily happen the way we might expect, along a timeline we prefer, or in a form obvious to us.
- Even if you don’t believe in God right now, it’s important to keep an open mind.
- It is essential to connect with nature and engage in activities that provide a sense of purpose, such as volunteering, that can foster a sense of belonging and fulfillment.
- There are a few other resources I am looking into that will help too, thank you so much for this article, it will help me so much in the future.
- Secondly, there are many ways of reconnecting with your Soul, but prayer is one of the most simple and immediate paths.
- We may carry the sense that we’re like the living dead, dragging ourselves through an existence that leaves us feeling nothing but pain, disappointment, and sorrow.
For right now, just ask yourself who might be on your amends list. What activities or habits have caused harm to my physical health? Many of us say that we have the right to do whatever we want to our own bodies. We somehow think this is freedom, but we’re really becoming a slave to our own desires. And—as many of us here in this room know—it’s not long until those desires are running our lives. One of the teachings we’ve carried forward from AA is that those of us who struggle with compulsive behaviors or addictions suffer from “an allergy of the body and an obsession of the mind“.
How to Understand How an Addict May Suffer Spiritually
This complacency can then lead to a sense of entitlement which is extremely dangerous for people in recovery. Entitlement leads to unrealistic expectations, which often leads to disappointment and resentment. Alcoholics Anonymous often makes reference to the publication of WIlliam James, “The Varieties of Religious Experiences,” which was published in 1902. Almost everyone who evolves spiritually has certain key characteristics, according to the book.
We may also think that the dark night of the soul is something completely incompatible with the fruit of the Spirit, not only that of faith but also that of joy. Once the Holy Spirit has flooded our hearts with a joy unspeakable, how can there be room in that chamber for such darkness? It is important spiritual malady definition for us to make a distinction between the spiritual fruit of joy and the cultural concept of happiness. A Christian can have joy in his heart while there is still spiritual depression in his head. The joy that we have sustains us through these dark nights and is not quenched by spiritual depression.
The Spiritual Malady: A Hole in the Soul
The practice of Christian Meditation offers a remedy to the spiritual malady. When we enter the silence with discipline and perseverance, we make space for the living presence of God to heal us from the inside out. Addicts and alcoholics may rid themselves of their drug or alcohol dependency by completing the Twelve Step process. This will allow them to undergo the required shift in thought that will free them from their addiction.
Simply pick up some pens and a piece of paper and draw however you feel. Art therapy is a surprisingly simple but powerful way of processing grief. You can even celebrate your deceased loved one by creating a piece of art in honor of them.
- When the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous was written and published in 1939, the times and language of those times was incredibly different than modern times.
- Read our article on how to start journaling for more help.
- As a result of this thought process, the spiritual illness they’re up against is at the core of their addiction.
- One of the great things about AA is that it’s flexible – you can make it work for you, even if you don’t believe in God.
- By addressing spiritual malady, we tap into our inner-self and establish a deeper connection with a higher power, which guides us towards a better life.
There are a few other resources I am looking into that will help too, thank you so much for this article, it will help me so much in the future. When we are disconnected from our Souls, our True Selves, our Higher Nature, we feel innately lost. And we always carry a hole inside of ourselves that can never quite be filled. But if you can relate to most of these signs and struggle to function in life, I strongly recommend reaching out to a trained psychotherapist or psychiatrist. Admitting that you need help is not a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength. Simply go to your internet browser and type in “grief counseling” and you will find many options.
A Spiritual Remedy for a Spiritual Condition
Perhaps it’s an obsession with nicotine, using cigars, cigarettes or vaping devices to self-administer that powerful, psycho-active drug. Regardless of the name of the substance or vice, all bad habits stem from brokenness that is directly tied to the emotional energy spun out of a dark force called resentment. Although the idea of the spiritual malady came to me through reading about Alcoholics Anonymous, I believe it is a concept any person can connect with whether or not they suffer from addiction. It’s also important to remember that your understanding of a Higher Power can change and evolve over time.
To conclude, it’s not my body — my allergic reaction to alcohol — that’s going to take me back to drinking. It’s really not my mind — the mental obsession — that is the underlying root of what will take me back to drinking. It’s the “spiritual malady”, as manifested by my EGO (selfishness-self-centeredness), that can eventually lead me back to drinking or sometimes even suicide. Spiritual Malady refers to a condition where an individual experiences a disconnection from the spiritual world, leading to a sense of emptiness or lack of purpose.