“Action is the only truth.”
– Marcus Aurelius.
Who we are and what we become is not defined or solidified by personal philosophy, academic knowledge, words, thoughts and beliefs. Character is purely a function of what we do and the purpose behind what we do. For addicts, and I suppose everybody else as well, we are only so much as we act. We can talk a good game, we can recite glorious platitudes, we can muse and contemplate, we can attend speeches of new-age faux gurus, we can become a walking self-help book and go to endless therapy sessions, we can whine, rant and shout, we can absorb so-called knowledge or propaganda from some loony professor, we can feed the ego in a tangled myriad of vaporous ways… and guess what?
Not only will none of it change who you are, but none of it will define you. We can only define people by what they actually do. Action is the only truth because it is the only process that ignites and effects real change and molds us into something solid and consistent. Nothing can truly be accomplished without action. This is not only true with recovery but all of life. You cannot acquire a skill set without ever doing it, and doing it repeatedly. You cannot live a life of service if you never actually go serve and help others. You cannot undo addiction simply by learning about it or acquiring self-knowledge. Addiction must be manually extracted, if you will. In other words, if addiction is acquired by way of a series of selfish actions, there is no ridding oneself of it without a series of selfless actions.
So you cannot educate yourself better. Sure you must know what to do, but there is no changing until it is actually done. You cannot think yourself better. You cannot talk yourself better. You cannot will yourself better. You must act yourself better. I’ve noted before why CBT therapy fails to effect change in someone as broken as an addict. CBT is essentially identifying the faulty belief, altering the belief, and then changing the way one acts. The problem is addicts are so damaged, our minds cannot possibly think straight. Addicts have to just start acting first and then the mind will eventually follow. The mind cannot shift, bend or change fundamentally without repeated action. So we cannot think our way into right action, we must rather act our way into right thinking.
I’m sure anyone who has tried to think their way better or somehow think their way into a different human being can attest to its failure. You can read the answer in a book, but you will still wake up in the morning stuck in the same old rut – depressed, angry, confused, anxious and unmotivated. You don’t just magically become motivated. You get up off your ass and simply do one little thing, and the act of doing something will generate motivation. The more action, the more motivation. The more action, the more change. The more action, the more character. The more action, the more strength, stamina, courage, honesty, appeal, effectiveness, success and contentment.
And for all of the selfish addicts out there, the good news is the more action, the better you will feel, as for addicts it’s all about feeling good. Or perhaps that doesn’t just apply to addicts anymore, what with the tragic snowflake generation of today. I would say I’m deeply disturbed if not altogether terrified of the future when observing the mellenials of today, but I’ve learned that we cannot control that which lies outside of us. We can only change what lies within. It is infinitely more peaceful to accept life and the world the way it is. Accepting what is happening is an indication that we believe in and accept ourselves. We can still comment on it, as I enjoy doing, but when we go to pieces and start screaming at the sky in agony and feigned moral outrage, the only thing we really hate is ourselves. That, I’m afraid, is the truth whether you want to believe it or not. Much of the hysteria you see is just self-loathing.
I can’t find the exact quote, but Marcus Aurelius also said something to the effect of, ‘There is no impediment which prevents a man from doing what needs to be done… and if there is one, it is only his own mind.’ This is what addicts and those treating them must understand. Anything is possible. Addiction is not a terminal disease nor is it a lifelong curse. It is but a temporary state of spiritual sickness and loss of willpower. And there is nothing that prevents any addict from getting better other than his own cowardice, laziness, weakness and narcissism. Why is anyone surprised by the failure of an addict to get better who fails to put down the pity pot, who blames anyone and anything but himself, and who truly believes he or she is a victim. They only thing preventing such a person from recovering is not the fact that he is addicted, but the fact that he is delusional and refuses to stop behaving like a child who flops to the ground crying and screaming when it’s time to get dressed and go to school… like my 3-year old this morning.
Marcus Aurelius understood this nearly 2,000 years ago, yet still today we are doomed to repeat history and fall prey to the same blindness today. We still think we can get better and change and become someone or something without action. This is in part the result of the poisonous, depraved and degenerate philosophy of envy, blame and victimhood you see being promoted today by those who do not understand the backwards idiocy and failure of Marxism. It is in part the result of the disgusting identity politics and political correctness of today that is destroying our country and tearing apart the very fabric of society. They will never see the error in their thinking so long as they remain so arrogant and smug, convinced they are the smartest one in the room, convinced they are right simply because they feel right and feel superior. Ironically, the moral and intellectual superiority has actually made them ineducable, almost brainwashed, and is sort of dumbing them down to the point of total ineffectiveness. Many of them actually appear to me to have gone insane.
If you want something, WORK for it. You don’t just change things and get what you want by crying and screaming like an infant. You don’t just walk into your first job serving coffee and demand a $20 minimum wage and then cry injustice and discrimination and racism and sexism and ten other isms and then take the poor business owner to court because you don’t get exactly what you want or because his rules and policies make you feel uncomfortable or challenge you. You work your way up, like everybody else has to do. What is happening to us? Well, I know what is happening, but I feel like I’m in the minority.
Apparently now, along with the ever-expanding list of things that are racist, sexist, bigoted and hateful such as Dr. Seuss, oompa loompas, yoga, math, grammar, English class, grilling hamburgers, cows farting, singing Jingle Bells, farmer’s markets, biological pronouns, last names with “-man” like Newman, any noun the “man” in it like “mankind,” certain street names, buildings, statues, hiking in nature, hiking gear, skiing, wearing latex gloves, having friends, having a best friend, Halloween (cancelled at a local school and renamed Orange & Black Spirit Day to be inclusive enough), daughter-father dances, mother-son dances, my 3-year old daughter’s Else dress (also her Moana dress), my 5-year old boy who likes dancing and being tickled but was born a white male (no doubt a racist – liberals say he was born racist. He also doesn’t like wearing dresses and prefers a binary pronoun when addressed so there must be something wrong with him), me because I exist, the Christmastime cups at Starbucks, Christmas trees, Christmas, Christians, Christ, God, freedom, free speech, free thinking, working, making money, wanting to keep the money you make, having money, having a job, having a house, starting/having a business, painting your house white, painting your house black, wearing a white t-shirt, wearing a black t-shirt, any hat with the flag on it, any hat that is partially or fully camouflaged, discussing Islamic doctrine, not bashing Christians, using facts when arguing with a liberal, winning an argument with a liberal, referring to historical or economic facts, mentioning the cyclical output of the sun’s energy output or cloud theory, football, college football, the national anthem, anyone who doesn’t kneel for the anthem, NFL owners (i.e. “slaveholders”, even though these guys make millions of dollars a year and bang supermodels every night for throwing a ball – horribly oppressed), the solar eclipse, anyone who doesn’t want to have sex with a transgender person, anyone who doesn’t want a dude to whip out his junk in front of my little girl in the girl’s bathroom, the nuclear family, family in general, getting married, eating three meals a day, having babies, white cars, black cars, buying gas, buying food, feeding the poor healthy food in place of food stamps/cash, not including pet food in the snap program, going to church, having both white friends as well as non-white friends, the American flag, liking the country (even a little), using the word America too much, asking a girl out, telling a girl they look nice, referring to your students as girls in an all-girl school, referring to your students as boys in an all-boy school (your supposed to say, “good morning humans” or “good morning persons” or “good morning people” or “good morning they, theirs, xe, xie or xen”, otherwise you’re a bigot), referring to your wife as your wife, not giving your kid a trophy when they lose their soccer game (or temper), giving your kid a trophy when he wins his soccer game (or behaves like he’s supposed to), expecting people to show up on time, a store locking frequently stolen items in a glass case (my God, they are so stupid. Um, I’m pretty sure Walmart doesn’t give a fuck who steals the items; I’m pretty sure they just don’t want people stealing the items. They issued an apology but shouldn’t have. A local stop and shop does the same thing with baby formula. They don’t lock it up because they are racist. My town is 85% white, 8% Asian and then you do the math. They lock it up because people with no money need baby formula. They lock it up because people with no money and no job have a shitload of kids, and when they do, refuse to breast feed so their beasts don’t lose shape even when many if not all of them could breast feed, which is better for the child and oh they wouldn’t have to steal formula from stop and shop) etc. etc. etc. etc. etc…
…coin tosses are now racist, too. An Olympian who recently lost a coin toss to carry the torch claimed it was due to racism. I guess the coin flippers thumb was racist as he must’ve known exactly how many revolutions it would take to land on the head or tail. Doesn’t matter that coin tosses have a statistical probability of 50/50. My God they are so stupid. In the mind of a liberal, facts don’t matter, especially facts that don’t fit into their breathtakingly insane ideological fundamentalism.
Oh, and apparently now rotten tomatoes is banning any reviews of the new Black Panther movie that are not good reviews, so even if you genuinely didn’t like the movie and gave it even a somewhat negative review, you’re a racist. That’s right. You now have to think exactly the way liberals want you to or you’re an evil, facist, Nazi racist… even though that’s exactly what fascist Nazi’s did. One comedian remarked that she didn’t want to buy tickets the opening weekend for she did not want to “suck the black joy out of the theater” and asked how long was appropriate to wait before she went. Um, wait, I thought segregation was bad. Guess not. Oh, and the current new media darling is Kim Jun Il’s sister, the sister of an “actual” tyrant whose regime has engaged in rape, torture, starvation, murder, gulags, and imprisoned people who weren’t sad enough when his father died. Yeah, okay.
Have they added liberalism to the DSM-V yet…? If they haven’t, I think it’s time. The funny thing is none of those things are racist, bigoted, intolerant or hateful except the people claiming they are.
Lol. Forgive the rant. They’ve just become so annoying these days and, quite frankly, nuts, I really couldn’t help it. They all seem to be under some kind of spell.