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Tuesday, 12 June 2012

Damian Thompson's New Book and Thoughts on Addiction

I have to get Mr. Thompson's new book, The Fix, which is on addiction in our culture. His last article, June 8th, in The Catholic Herald, mirrors the concerns of the posting below. Thompson refers to the Pope's awareness and addressing of the "destructive and divisive" temptations to addictions of all kinds.

Sexual addictions of all sorts have ruined family life. The most common cause of divorce now in the United States is addiction to pornography, a statistic from 2011. Thompson's article is on all addictions, but he also notes the great evil of pornography.

One item which I did not see in Thompson's article, but glean from statements from the Pope is that the cult of individualism leads to personal addiction, such as those of sex, computer games and drugs, as an isolated individual needs some type of interaction and gets it online or in forums. When I was in Malta last year, I discovered, by accident, an entire network of online homosexual porn, which apparently is legal. One of my Catholic friends was shocked when I explained to her that I found this just by googling and she tried to deny that Malta would allow this. Hmmm. Head in the sand syndrome does not help people with addictions. Souls are lost while the vast majority of Catholics in the pew either tolerate the evil of addictions, or pretend these are not in their families and places of work.

Another American statistic is that 60% of the populace has an addictive personality. How did this happen to a nation once of extroverts and pioneer energies? Catholicism needs to address addictions and it needs to start in the home. However, the gene pool may have something to do with this statistic, as new brain scans reveal that the addictive brain looks different than the healthy, normal brain. What comes first, the habits of addiction or the brain's proclivity to addiction, has not been proven. Siblings seem to show brain addictive tendencies, which is interesting. Are we marrying people who have addictions for some reason? Maybe the contraception culture has something to do with this trend.

Sadly, I know parents who are so tolerant that they allow their children to be involved in addictive behavior. I would not want to be one of those parents in front of God at the particular judgment.