Thursday, 19 March 2015

To Thine Own Self Be True

by Twerski, Rabbi Dr. Avraham (See all authors)

Every so often there is a news item that research shows promise of a drug that can cure alcohol or drug addiction. Thus far, nothing like a cure has materialized. The possibility of a drug that will cure behavioral addictions such as compulsive gambling or sex addiction is even more remote.

But I have come across something that holds promise for all addictions, and it is surprisingly simple: TRUTH! I believe that if an addict commits to absolute truthfulness and adheres to this, and will not lie under any circumstances, not a white lie nor a lie of any color, he can beat the addiction. No rationalization can justify a lie, and one must be willing to be truthful even if it hurts. One must know that any lie constitutes a relapse.

Lying is an integral component of addiction, just as coughing is to pneumonia. Unfortunately, lying in addiction is so habitual that the addict may not be aware that he is lying, and it requires great alertness and total honesty to live up to the commitment. Of course, one cannot lie to G-d or to oneself. I have found that it may be more difficult for an addict to abstain from lying than from his addiction.

Because of the propensity to lie, addicts cannot have sincere relationships. The latter require trust, and there can be no trust in absence of truth.

I would like this to be put to the test. I have high hopes that it can work.