Wednesday, July 22, 2015

EDUCATION: Dealing with Addiction

I recently came across a TedTalk by Johann Hari called Everything you think you know about addiction is wrong. It has some points that would be a fantastic discussion starter for anybody over the age of 15, as addiction usually begins in the teenage years when we start seeing ourselves in the broader context of society. The video itself is primarily about social issues and does not connect to God, but I included that in my discussion questions. I didn't include a bunch of Bible verses about treating your body as a temple or trusting in God because, honestly, I wanted them to look at the problem from an angle other than "don't do this because it makes God unhappy" or "God loves you so don't turn to alcohol" or even "your body is a temple, don't trash it." This is not about drugs and alcohol. It's about addiction. The reality is that we are in a society that is lonely and disconnected from God and so we turn to addictions of shopping, food, alcohol, gambling, cell phones, internet, pornography, drugs, etc. He even makes a point about how nervous people look when they are in a room and somebody expects them to turn their phones off for 2 hours. It's time to start getting to the root of the problem.

You can watch the video below or go to the TedEd site, but here are a few of the main points:

  • People are addicted to far more things than just drugs or alcohol.
  • Addiction is about disconnection and loneliness on a basic human level.
  • Addiction is about the cage in which we find ourselves that we call life.
  • Addiction is about not being able to be present in our own lives. 
  • We have traded stuff for connection. 
  • It's our nature as human beings to need to bond. 

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