“For those of you who may not be familiar with Ram Dass, in the late 1960s he helped shape the awakening consciousness of an entire generation with his bestseller Be Here Now.
One of my favorite Ram Dass stories is the one he tells about an early encounter with Neem Karoli Baba, his guru in India. Ram Dass brought some capsules with him to India that were designed to dramatically alter one’s state of consciousness. Neem Karoli Baba confronted Ram Dass about these pills and asked him to give all of them to him. Ram Dass thought that he’d brought a long-term supply of this very powerful psychedelic substance—yet he watched in horror and amazement as this enlightened being swallowed all of them right before his eyes, with no visible reaction. His guru then asked him if he had any more, since these obviously weren’t working. After telling this story, Ram Dass concluded with one of his most sagacious observations: ‘If you’re already in Detroit,’ he observed, ‘then you don’t have to take a bus to get there.’
Addictions of every description are vehicles that people board in order to get someplace higher, more pleasurable, more peaceful, more tuned in and turned on, and so on. But if you’re already aligned with this energy, then it’s obviously unnecessary to climb aboard any vehicle headed to a place where you currently reside. Using substances of non-well-being in order to experience this separate reality is assuredly a counterfeit means of doing so.
The pattern goes something like this: We must have more and more of what we desire. The more of it we take or imbibe, the more we need. The less effective it is as we consume more. Then, to top off this huge imbalance, what we’re using to get to this place of bliss is toxic to our well-being! The addiction is increasing our imbalance. Our desire is for bliss, peace, love, health, freedom, and so on, but the addictive behavior gives us precisely the opposite. If it goes unchecked, it will wreak havoc on our body and mind, and ultimately destroy us.
The more we try to conquer addictions at various stages of our lives to things such as sugar, soda pop, caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, or certain drugs, the more they gain a foothold on us. Force/ counterforce: Apply the weapons, and they will bring out their artillery, with your body as the battleground where the war was being waged. Ralph Waldo Emerson said: “The remedy for all blunders is love.” How would things be different if we followed his advice? The two key words are blunder and love. Let’s examine them more closely.
Blunder. Why call an addiction a blunder? Demanding more and more of something your body and mind vehemently despise is addiction. Choosing the lopsided world of addiction over the equilibrium that is your spiritual heritage is a major distortion of your birthright. When you do that, you’re mismanaging this life. This is something I strongly believe is a blunder that can be balanced with love.
You originated from an invisible spiritual energy field of pure well-being. Your desire is to be balanced in that spirit in your thoughts and behaviors—now, in this life, in this moment, in your bodily form. You want that harmony and sense that it’s available without having to leave your body, or in other words, die. So, in that interpretation, you’re seeking a balance that allows you to die while you’re alive.
You’ll return to spirit, the non-form, upon your death, but you have the option of choosing to live in true enlightened balance, or God-realization . . . now, in this physical state. Your Source doesn’t create from toxicity. It doesn’t fill your veins or your stomach or any part of you with poison or excess. It creates from well-being, balance, and effortless perfection. This is your spiritual heritage. And love can correct the blunders that distance you from your spiritual self.
Love. Why is love the antidote to addictions? It’s very simple—because love is what you are; it’s the center of your creation. It’s your point of origination and can become your point of attraction as well. As Karl Menninger told his patients, and anyone else who was suffering and willing to listen, ‘Love cures, the ones who receive love and the ones who give it, too.’ In transcending your addictive habits, you have the opportunity to be both the giver and the receiver of the spiritual balm of love. As you apply it, you feel the balance returning to your life. You no longer pursue a counterfeit freedom, and you no longer attract what you don’t want. Instead, you seek the balance of being connected to your authentic nature.”
Excerpt taken from Being In Balance, Dr. Wayne Dyer