What I like about You….An essay on Addictions of our times

The things I love about alcoholics and drug addicts, and all who fall into the category of substance-abusers is this; their honesty is humbling to me. They are at times laid bare in their pain and their purely beautiful naked souls are exposed for the world to see.

And there am I, a pathetic creature of habits and deeds, so tied to my fears and love of habitual societal norms, plus the comforts of home, that I begin to despise my own lack of innate trust and childlike innocence. It’s that loss of perception where you cocoon yourself and mask all your innermost thoughts and feelings that makes you feel smugly superior owing to your sense of control. It’s that control that covers all the elements of your life.

The irony? All those elements of your life are mostly out of your control. Nothing but manifest destiny lies before us, and we need to tell ourselves daily lies to subsist. It’s that daily lie that Horace Greeley made us believe. It says that if we work hard enough and play by the rules we shall overcome. It’s pure B.S. as are most of the other cynical lies we live and die by.

What I like about addicts is that they are stripped bare of the lies and the artifice at times. At times their lives are laid raw and open for all of us to see. They expose themselves for a time and the world may see them for what they are. They are childlike creatures.

I know they are many other things. They are selfish and shallow, unthinking and uncaring. They focus purely on the thrill of the moment, and not on the long-term consequences. But they are childlike and trusting liars all. They live by the Code of Addicts, which has no code. It’s all for one and one for one only.

We see ourselves as superior beings, but in the light of day, our judgments will be measured by the same jury of one. We are all stripped bare of the lies we tell ourselves and of the artifice of our lives. These things that are self-evident will hold true. We must forgive the addicts among us. For they are part of the society that bred and raised them. We must own up and accept their sins and failings. They are always with us and they walk among us now. We are them and they are us. They are our friends and lovers, our children and parents. Their failings are our own.

At the end of our lives, our souls are laid open with all our lies exposed. That is why we can never judge the addicted and tormented souls that walk amongst us. We can look in the mirror each day and decide to keep it in or to let it go. In the end, the decision will be out of our hands. We must let go of the rage and terror and frustration we feel and learn to simply hate the sin and love the sinner.

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