1. What is addiction?
Addiction is a thirst for the wholeness that comes from the soul. This thirst for wholeness is replaced by some substitute that can never fill the gap between you and your soul. Physically, it is something that you feel compelled to do that has long term bad effects.
2. How can I help heal someone under the influence of an addiction or addictive bahavior?
You start with lifestyle and you start by the transformation of the person's old impulses and body patterns by using the elements, earth, air, fire, water and ether, because this represent the process of manifestantion. By the time something is an addiction, it is embodied in the gross physical, so that's the best place to start. An addict who's under the pressure of those impulses has a very difficult time being subtle. You must begin where they are and then slowly elevate them to other state.
3. Why begin with the earth element in healing a person from addiction?
The point is to completely change the physical embodiment immediately, so that all experience is different and the person has to make sense out of that experience. The task is to change the level of vitality and to allign the psyche with heart and soul. When one is not experiencing the Self, one starts to compensate from outside oneself. Raising the level of vitality is a very direct way of talking with the body and creating the conversation with your own conscious and subconscious in the realm of the psysical body. That's one of the nice things about the approach.
4. How does society promote addiction, and what is the yogic message of the possible human in contrast?
The message of the possible human is that you are whole, you are complete, you need nothing, which is different from normal society message of incompleteness, wrongness, which creates motivation for addiction.
5. What is the psychology of addiction?
When the Soul/seed/bija/parusha is in the center of the psyche (body/mind) ans you're creating from that center, then we say you're experiencing the Self, you're aligned with your core reality, your central purpose. When you're off center, an unfillable gap is created, which your projected ego, your commotional ego tries to fill. You are acting from a concept of you (not out of wholeness as expressed by the Mul Mantra) rather than the real you. The actions that are created from this displaced center are like waves or commotion that come back.
If your vitality is strong and you're aligned with your true self, you're autono-mous. If you have a lot of vitality, but you're not aligned with your true self, you end up being compulsive. When your energy is low and yo're mis-aligned, then you get dependent, impulsive.
6. What are the three loves of the soul and their relationship to addiction?
The soul has three loves:
1) To manifest
2) to merge, to love, to create identity
3) to be whole, radiant and magnificent
I addictions, there are many ways of trying to fill the gap, depending on where one is off-center, in which of the three minds, negative, positive and neutral or a combination.
Whwn the negative mind isn't handled right, there's a block around the sense of wholeness and magnificence; one gets fragmented. Many times people get into addictions because of not enough attention to a part. Or, a person is in the negative mind and doesn't know how to become positive,so he/she turns to something to damped the negative feeling. In the binge and purge syndrome, the negative mind tells you that a part, namely a food, was left out and that part starts becoming like a shadow, bigger and bigger until you can't control yourself in relation to it. Then you feel bad about binging and you start splitting. You are not acting whole because you didn't handle the negative mind, the part that's separated. Drinking is a common way of trying to deal with internal conflict, especially where it's parts conflict: you feel down, you're in the negative mind, and you don't know how to return that to positive yourself, so you use something to dampen the negative feelling.
The positive mind is connected to the urge to manifest. Sometimes it doesn't happen the way you want it. When the positive mind is blocked in its attempt to satisfy the urge to manifest, you start getting a subconscious feeling of anger, which leads to low vitality and you get dependency, co-dependency. Boundaries are crossed, rules don't work. Or, once you're achieved something, by law of polarity, there comes out of anger or dependency.
The third way is the misuse of the more neutral mind, which corresponds to merger. Neutral mind is about identity, how you want to fulfill your sense of being. When your neutral mind is right, you're creating off of your basic soul. When that's off, there's a kind of emptiness, an absense of the sense o purpose, a sense of unfulfilled mission or the absense of the sacred. Then, you get a deep addiction because nothing seems to satisty that. You'll go from drug to drug, do all kinds of things, and get very depressed.
You can have a combination of all three: confusion of identity; projection-hating things in others; identification with what other people have; entanglement-boundaries intermeshed, crossed.
7. What are three styles of or approaches to addiction?
They can be classified in terms of the three minds: tamasic, rajasic and sattvic; or the three body types in Ayurveda: kapha, vata, pitta; or the neurochemical approach, where there are three styles of drugs; stimulants, depressants and fantasy/psychoactive drugs.
8. What are some of the effects on the system of addictions to common stimulants, nicotine and caffeine?
With the mild stimulants, the brain gives a quick squeeze-a little caffeine, the adrenals; nicotine, norepinephrine-which imbalances the sympathetic and parasympathetic systems. To much caffeine, whether it's in chocolate or coffee, upsets the nerves and gives you impatience. When you take in a cigarette, within eight seconds you get norepinephrine pulsing through the brain. It interrupts breathing and takes you away from the kindness and consciousness that is your basic soul. It also takes away your patience, and without patience you can't systematically go ahead and express and manifest as your soul wants. Breathing is so powerful in terms of keeping your body healed, and because nicotine creates the stimulation, after a while it hurts the nervous system and you can't manifest the properties of kindness.
9. What are some of the techniques for treating addiction to these substances?
Alternate nostril breathing is one way to help rebalance the itchiness in the itchiness in the nervous system from an imbalance of stimulation from the outside. If your're trying to get rid of an addiction, cleanse and re-balance the nervous system, then drink 4-8 cups of yogi tea per day. It will give you strength and calmness, as with yoga where you're both energized and relaxed. Yogi tea is very balanced nutritional medicine.
For the immediate urge for stimulation, there is a breathing technique which matches the quick squeezes the brain gives when one has taken caffeine or nicotine. (A little caffeine, the adrenals; nicotine, norepinephrine). The exercise stops the urge in its tracks. It helps to balance the need for outside stimulations. Whenever you feel the urge, do three breaths, done by sipping air in staccato, rapid rhythm by fluttering the tongue up against the hard palate, right in the center, then holding the breath while pressing the tongue against the roof of the mouth. Exhale. After three breaths, your energy is changed and you don't have the same need.
With smoking addiction, drink 3-6 glasses of water in the morning to get rid of all the residue in the adrenals and kidneys. Then, take about 6 prunes, put them in a little water, let them soak over night, and in the morning after exercise, drink the prune water and eat the prunes. Then, in the afternoon, eat a couple of plums, which are for blood purification and help the nervous system. You can also make a prune pie. take out the pits and bake the prunes with ground yogi tea spices (minus the black tea) with a little cayenne, if you like. Take a slice of the spicy prune pie in the afternoon when the energy shifts, starts to go down.
10. What are other two commonly used drugs and their effects?
Marijuana and alchohol. Alchohol damage liver function, decreases the circulation into the joints and hands, and upsets the ecology of the blood. Alchohol will suppress the activity of the right side of the brain and stimulate the left side. With marijuana, the right hemisphere is more stimulated. With alchohol, all the speech functions go, along with other judgment; with marijuana, speech just becomes profound.
Also, with these substances, the whole back brain gets a pressure. In alchohol, the cerebellum can actually swell. Through the use of marijuana, the sacrum, the spinal fluid, the diaphram and the occiput-that whole mechanism of sacral-occipital pumping-gets interrupted because the diaphfram gets cut and anesthetized. The breathing pattern is disrupted and that pump stops, then there's a compression and a pressure in the back of the head that starts occurring. It's as if oil stops going to the motor of the brain and you're running your car without oil.
In addition, neurological problems are created with these addictions. Certain areas of motivation go, neural separations occur in the lower limbic system, and there's a between the two hemispheres of the brain to get a full understanding and representation of the world, becomes disrupted, with marijuana.
12. In the global culture, in the Aquarian age, what sort of drugs are created?
In the future global culture, our technology will allow us to create designer drugs to meet anybody's fantasies. All drugs will be available. We may even create drugs with many fewer side effects. The key reason not to use the drugs is to create a relationship on your own to have the dignity of saibhung, of self-autonomy. Plus, there are very subtle effects in the use of drugs on the prainc body and the more subtle of the ten bodies that are not as obvious as gross physical damage.
13. What is specifically unique about the yogic approach to healing addictions?
The yogic approach to addictions focuses on empowering the person through aligning them with their inner self. It's not about any one particular drug. We do have specific herbs and techniques that help ameliorate many of the symptoms that do come in unique combinations with each drug, but the addictive process itself is undersood to be one of personality, energy and habit. We change the person by lifestyle, by environment, and by relationship.
14. What are some of the juice combinations for healing addictions?
8 oz. carrot juice + 1/2 oz. garlic juce, three times a day gets glands to function.
6 oz. apple juice + 1-2 oz. beet juice for the liver.
Tea of fennel and basic for shakinness.
15. Additional yogic techniques for treating addictions?
Celery and trinity root pancakes, made with garbanzo flour.
Breathwalk, chanting "HAR" as heel hits the grouhd, stimultates pituitary to higher functioning. Breathwalk, with Sitali pranayam: inhale 6-10 seconds, hold 6-10 seconds. exhale 6-10 seconds, cools the nervouse system, repairs nervous system, and gets rid of depression.
Kirtan Kriya; balances the two hemispheres of the brain and gives intuition. SA TA NA MA masters the five elements.
Maha Agni Pranajam is exellent for relieving the pressure that gathers at the occiput at the base of the skull. This often increases a lot under the use of marijuana. Pressure in that area blocks a small chakra that's there that's related to memory and to motivation. Doing Maha Agni Pranajam opens that and restores much of the memory function.
Medical Meditation for Habituation is excellent for braking the basic feeling of impulse. Impulse are regulated by inhibition that comes from the frontal cortex. There's a constant pulse between the old brain and the frontal brain. This helps reestablish that balance.
The Mul Mantra is a powerful technique because it reestablishes you at your very root, or mul. It gives you the ability to empower your word and to create an impact on your own self.