How a dramatically different model can change everything: addiction

June 4, 2015 by Joshua
in Models, Nature, Perception

I wrote before about “One of the best books I’ve read on the environment, our impact on it, and what we can do about it” as well as two videos based on it. The book is called Sustainable Energy — Without the Hot Air.

There several books in the “Without Hot Air” series. If the others are half as informative and useful as the environment one, I’ll love them.

An article recommended by their publisher I read yesterday, The Likely Cause of Addiction Has Been Discovered, and It Is Not What You Think, suggested I will like their book, Drugs Without The Hot Air, as much.

I can’t comment on the book since I haven’t read it, but the article illustrates one of the major points of this blog, especially in the series on The Model, which is how much your beliefs affect how you perceive your world and respond to it. The article describes a model for addiction that differs from the one I knew. It suggests that “chemical hooks” to your brain addict you but, in my words, having no better options to do with your time. In other words, people without much choice in life will get addicted more than people who have better options.

The article describes the model in more depth, along with evidence supporting it and evidence contradicting the chemical model. I’ll let you read the article and decide how compelling you find it for yourself. At the same time, I suggest you ask yourself how compelling you find the old model, if you believe it, and why you would believe it.

For my purposes, if you read the article, I suggest trying out the new model for addiction and see how suddenly different many things look. In my case, I found many things that never made sense suddenly make sense, such as how addictions to things without chemicals, like gambling, happen. Or how people prescribed to use drugs don’t get addicted. Or if addiction is an effective concept. Or how both political views miss the point. As more things make sense viewed from the new model, you start looking at how you act based on it, like how we treat people whom we call addicted. In the article you’ll see the “Rat Park” experiment described, which suggests that imprisoning people looks like what creates addiction.

If your views and strategies can change so fast in one area, why not others? Why not when you change them intentionally? I find experiences like reading this article create greater flexibility in creating and adopting new beliefs, which I consider one of the most effective skills to improve your life. Likewise, I see its lack as one of the greatest imprisonments you can impose on yourself.

I don’t know enough one way or another to evaluate the article beyond that the publisher of a book I consider excellent endorsed it. I only want to use it to illustrate how dramatically a new model can change your view on things you considered clear before.

Wait, I’ll add that I looked up the article’s author. He wrote his own book on the subject, Chasing the Scream. It looks like years before he was caught plagiarizing, but that he’s had to make his new book more transparent and that it’s gotten many favorable reviews. Again, I haven’t read the book, only the article, so you have to evaluate its credibility.

Reviews of Drugs Without The Hot Air:

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