Become Free From Addiction through Spiritual Understanding: Part 1 of 2
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Jagad Guru says that all addiction is rooted in misunderstandings about who we are and what we need to be truly happy and fulfilled.
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Jagad Guru offers wisdom on how we can be free from addiction through spiritual understanding.
Knowing who we are can free us from addiction.
Addiction is a common problem in the modern world. Even if we, personally, do not feel we have an unhealthy dependence on a particular substance or activity, chances are that someone we know and care about does. The adverse effects of addiction are that they keep us in a perpetual state of anxiety, unhappiness, and suffering. They prevent us from experiencing the inner peace, happiness, and fulfillment that is our natural state of being.
What is vitally important to know about addiction – any addiction – is that it can be overcome. All addiction is rooted in misunderstandings about who we are and what we need to be truly happy and fulfilled. With a correct understanding of our true identity, we can free ourselves from addiction, and actually find the peace and happiness that we seek.
Who are we?
Generally, most of us live under the misconception that we are our body. If we are asked to describe our self, we will describe the features of our physical body: gender, age, ethnicity, hair and eye color, height, weight, and so on. We identity our self as our body. We do not think my body is old or my body is young, my body is overweight or my body is slender. We think I am old, I am young, I am overweight, and I am slender. But, actually, we are not any of these, as we are not our physical body.
We are not the physical body.
The fact that we are not our physical body has even been proven by modern science. It has been discovered through studies conducted by Oakridge Atomic Research Center that every atom within our physical body is replaced at least every five years. This means that the body we have on now is completely different from the body we had on five years ago. It is made up of completely different atoms than were there five years ago. It may look more or less the same to us, but if we had the vision to see on an atomic level, we would be able to verify with our own eyes that it is a completely different body.
Yet despite the fact that our current body is completely different from our body of five years ago, we are still the same person. We remember being alive five years ago, ten years ago, and so on, even though the bodies we had on back then are completely gone. Same person, different bodies. We are not our body. Rather we are the non-physical person who successively wears all these physical bodies.
We are spiritual beings temporarily wearing the material mind and body.
In the ancient yoga scriptures, it is clearly explained that we are not our body, and also not our mind. The mind and body are compared to a suit of clothes. The gross physical body is like an outer layer of clothes. The mind, or subtle body, is like an under layer of clothes. We are the eternal spiritual being who is temporarily wearing these “clothes.” The mind and body are made of material energy, but we are made of an altogether different kind of energy – spiritual energy.
Material energy cannot satisfy us.
Because we are made of spiritual energy, material things cannot satisfy our longing for happiness and meaningful connection. Stimulating the senses or the mind of the body by exposing them to various material objects may provide some temporary relief from our suffering condition or a flash of excitement or pleasure, but it does not provide real and lasting happiness for us.
Nor does it provide real shelter, peace, meaningful purpose, or love – which we also need. This is because material sense pleasure does not actually touch us. It may feed our mind or body, but it cannot actually touch us because we are not made of material energy. It can never fulfill our innate need and desire for spiritual connection.
As spiritual beings, we need to be linked up with the Supreme Person to be completely happy and fulfilled.
As tiny, individual spiritual beings, we have an innate need to be consciously linked up with God, the Supreme Spiritual Being. We have a natural dependency upon God, and an inherent need to be intimately, lovingly relating with Him. The Supreme Person is the very source and foundation of our existence, our closest relative, and eternally, our dear most beloved Friend.
Our natural, healthy condition is to be knowingly connected with Him, and affectionately relating with Him as our Best Friend and the center of our lives. It is natural for us to be taking complete shelter in our relationship with the Supreme Person, experiencing freedom and deriving immeasurable happiness from this relationship. In fact, everything we need to be completely happy and fulfilled can be found within our relationship with God.
Check out part 2 for how to achieve the platform of real happiness.
Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda is a yoga spiritual teacher in the disciplic succession known as the Brahma Madhva Gaudiya Sampradaya. This highly respected spiritual lineage extends back over 5,000 years to Lord Sri Krishna Himself.
Because he presents ancient bonafide yoga and Vedic wisdom in a down to earth, scientific, and philosophical manner, rather than dogmatically and fanatically, countless individuals have found genuine spirituality that has real application in their modern lives.
More information about him can be found here: https://sif.yoga/about/jagad-guru