Crying Tears of Joy
The Introduction to The Addiction Healing Pathway
Fantastic news! The first full draft of The Addiction Healing Pathway book is now complete.
To celebrate I would love to share the Introduction with you. Of course, this may change somewhat for the final version, but it provides a great overview of my motivations and intention for this book.
I am honoured to share it with you, and I can’t wait to hear your thoughts!
One of the most traumatic times of my life was when I stood up in an AA meeting and said:
“Hi, I’m Belinda, and I am an addict.”
While yes, there was an initial sense of relief at admitting the truth, at the same time it was like all of the shame, guilt, fear, anger and pride I had ever felt came tumbling down upon me. Instead of being liberated by the admission, I was being suffocated by my distress. Hearing over and over again about what other people had lost added more rubble on top of my hurting heart, and there was no doubt about it, I was trapped in a deep dark cave.
After several years of digging deep within, I have found a light that was burning for me all along. A light that, once I found it, led me out into the sunshine. This light exists for you too. It is your spirit. We may not have had much awareness or control over how we got separated from our spirit. But now, with insight and courage, you sure have the power to begin the journey of reconnection, and the process of true healing.
If I had my chance over again, and with the blessing of what I know now, here is how I would choose to introduce myself:
“Hi, I am Belinda, and within me, I have an amazing spirit. I’m addicted to alcohol at the moment, but I am here to heal from this and let my spirit shine once again.”
For me, these words hold great power, real courage, and have me crying — but they are not tears of despair; they are tears of joy. They are not tears of pain but tears of relief and hope.
My greatest wish for you is that sometime soon, you also get to cry tears of joy and that this joy is founded upon true healing.
There is a path to heal from addiction, and a light to guide your way! The path is provided in this book — it is The Addiction Healing Pathway. The light has been there for you all this time, and it is your spirit. The Addiction Healing Pathway provides the steps for you to get back to this light, reconnect with your spirit, and let it shine in this world freely and powerfully. This book is here to support you as you move through the process of giving yourself permission to care for and nurture your body, mind and spirit. It is there to guide your journey to reclaim your power in this world and to live it freely.
As you will see, the Addiction Healing Pathway’s fundamental premise is that addiction is caused by a separation from our unique and beautiful spirits. This disconnect creates an internal conflict that fuels distressing emotions, harmful thoughts, beliefs and behaviours. What begins as a spiritual crisis ends up as a war on your own body and mind, and there are many casualties. That the cause of addiction is a disconnect with your spirit is not my unique idea. For thousands of years before us, the wise ones have proclaimed the dangers of not being true to ourselves. For example, in the Gospel of Thomas, written almost 2000 years ago, we hear the following dire warning:
“If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.” ~ Gospel of Thomas, Saying 70.
Almost 100 years ago, the poet Lucien Jacque voiced his concerns about the consequences of not expressing what is within you.
“ It is the always soul that dies first. Even if its departure goes unnoticed, and it always carries the body along with it. Humans are nourished by the invisible. We are nourished by that which is beyond the personal. We die by preferring its opposite.” ~ Lucien Jacque (French poet)
And most recently, the work of Dr Richard Davidson and the Centre for Healthy Minds has used neuroscience to determine that a sense of purpose and meaning is a fundamental pillar of wellbeing. There is no doubt that a sense of meaning is almost impossible to find within the distress of addiction. But it is still there. The purpose of this book is to deliver a path back to this purpose, back to your spirit so that you can re-establish a relationship with it, care for it and bring it out into the world. As Thomas says, it allows your spirit to come forth into this world that will save you. As I prefer to say, it allows your spirit to shine that heals the wounds of addiction.
However, while this journey may appear simplistic, it does not mean that it is easy. There can be significant harm done by the addiction to your body, thoughts and emotions. I truly believe that these need to be cared for first to provide the energy, clarity and courage you need to do the deep spiritual work. Here is why:
Brain: the behaviours of addiction become hard-wired into the brain and damage the centres that allow us to choose what we do. Healing needs to begin here to build new and healthy pathways in the brain and repair any injury done to the brain due to the addiction. Then you can begin to think more clearly and to start making good decisions again.
Body: at the very least, addiction may have resulted in a vitamin deficiency or malnutrition. At the very worst, you may be headed into a new battle of brain disease or cancers. There is no doubt that for everyone, the body takes a great toll from addiction. It does just depend on what end of the scale your injuries lie. The body’s repair and nurturing are necessary to provide the energy to begin and sustain the healing journey.
Thoughts: It is no use building your brain and body for a great expedition if you believe you are bound to fail. For what we believe to be true will become our truth. That is why, when the mind is clearer, and we have sufficient energy, we need to turn our attention to our thoughts. The most important thoughts are beliefs, and these are what we hold to be true, even if there is no evidence. We need to uncover and challenge those that are holding us back from healing.
Emotions: emotions are the key driver for action. Distressing emotions can begin a downward spiral that leads to further self-harming behaviours and therefore, even more, distressing emotions. But every emotion we have is also giving us a message. It is calling us to learn and grow, and once we know the language that emotions are speaking, we can tap into their wisdom. No longer do emotions become an enemy on the path; they become a true and trusted ally for our healing journey. Because when we can successfully navigate such emotions as fear, shame, and guilt, we can find the courage to meet and be true to our amazing spirit.
Spirit: each of us has gifts, talents, passions and energy that are unique in this world. When these are recognised, appreciated and lived, we have a sense of meaning and purpose, and we can live in peace. When these are hidden, denied or actively opposed the war with the self begins. We begin to think we are faulty, and with this belief begins a pattern of self-destruction. If we think we are wrong, broken, weird, defective or damaged, then we begin to treat ourselves as such. However, if we see and love the person we are within, then this love will shine through into a life of self-compassion and self-care.
So, while I believe addiction is driven from a disconnect with your spirit, I feel the brain and body’s physical elements need to be treated first. The physical limitations of illness, fuzzy thinking and lack of energy will restrict our ability to move forward. Strength, clarity of thought and positive energy are required to deal with the subtle belief barriers and negative thoughts that may keep us stuck. They are also needed to dig deep to find the confidence and courage to be true to ourselves and contribute to something bigger than ourselves.
However, these thoughts and the tools provided in this book are not just created from my ideas. They are based on the wisdom of both ancient and modern philosophers, scientists, soul connectors, prophets, psychoanalysts and healers. Specifically, the techniques for spirit connection comes from ancient Tibetan and Shamanistic healing practices. The approach to thoughts and emotions comes from the school of cognitive behavioural therapy. The information on the role of the brain in addiction is supported with the latest findings from neuroscience. So, The Addiction Healing Pathway is not just my view of the process. It is based on the knowledge and experience gained over thousands of years about how our bodies and minds work and our spirit’s great power. It is with great humility but also with great excitement that I pass this wisdom on to you.
Just one more important note before you embark on the great adventure is The Addiction Healing Pathway. This book is not intended to be a textbook. It is not here as a rigid map of the specific steps you need to take one by one to heal from addiction. This book is here as a guide only. Take what is right for you at the moment, leave what is not. Experiment, see what works and feel empowered to try new things along the way. You are an individual with the most amazing and unique spirit. For this reason, your path to healing will also be unique. This book’s whole point is to find what is true for you, so please use the information within as a starting point for your authentic adventure.
I know your road so far has been paved with so much trauma, so much hurt and so much loss. I know you have cried so many tears of hopelessness and pain. I also know there will be many more to come. But I do also know, deep down in my own heart, if you travel The Addiction Healing Pathway, someday soon there will also be tears of joy. I am feeling them well in my eyes now thinking of you reading this book because I know what is in store for you. You are so incredible, so powerful and so beautiful, and so very worthy of love. I hope that this book helps you come to know these things for yourself.
May you too come to cry tears of joy.
p.s. If you would prefer to watch the video version, head over to the YouTube Channel -