"Can the Brain Heal Itself From Prolonged Pot Use?"


     Charlie, this is a really good post. Thank you for having the guts to say things as they really are. It’s so refreshing to hear someone talk like this, with zero fear of being politically incorrect.

     I have a question for you, please and thank you: Do you think that if someone has smoked pot for a really long time (say 30 years), that is has done irreversible damage to their brain? Or can the brain heal itself from even that long a period of abuse? 

     Hey Matty, It’s funny because when I saw the subject line come in on email, I thought it might be someone to bash, but then I was refreshingly surprised. 

     With respect to prolonged pot use and brain damage, I think ultimately you’d have to take it on a case by case basis, depending on the individual who has it and the degree and type of damage.
    That said, anything is possible. I mean listen, brother, I did enough drugs and drank enough alcohol to kill a small town and I’m basically okay, having no lasting brain damage to speak of, by the grace of God. Measured against the first 28 years of my life, the last 13 following the Steps and consequent spiritual experience, I’ve been able to perform and succeed at a much higher level than before. 

     More importantly, I was also able to alter my brain bio-chemically and change its homeostasis, and I give credit not just to personal effort but to the power of God. Through repeated actions such as prayer and focused meditation, I changed what doctors believed was a permanent chemical situation. That is, I no longer suffer from depression (which is actually just a voluntary leaking of vital energy) and other such imbalances. There are no more wild swings, both high and low. And then cognitively, I can absorb, process and remember information as well as I did before, if not better. In addition to consistent meditation, prayer, service, inventory and education, vigorous exercise and eating properly can also help to repair the brain. Food can be the best medicine for a host of issues, though I’m certainly no nutritional hero, to say the least.

     So brain damage is not necessarily irreversible. Sure some damage is more difficult than others to reverse. Huffing certain inhalants, for instance, can cause significant damage to the hippocampus and other parts of the frontal cortex responsible for motor ability. Prolonged pot use also damages the hippocampus and cerebral cortex, but I think what’s important to remember is that when a person recovers from his or her deep-seated spiritual malady, they can suddenly become guided and driven by an entirely new set of guiding principles, attitudes and willingness to act. In this way, the previous effects of drug use can be mitigated by an opening up of other areas of his or her brain… and soul.

     Finally, the individual in question is the by far the most significant variable. How much work is he willing do to to repair himself? Is he willing to sit still in meditation everyday for two hours? Is he willing to pray? Is he willing to exercise his brain vigorously by continuing to read, write and learn? Is he willing to ask God for help? Will he ask God sincerely to repair his brain? Is he willing to serve others and in doing so, serve God. For the closer he or she gets to God, the more healing is possible. The power of God is unlimited and capable of anything, and thus, a person can certainly by touched just briefly by this power and be restored in full. That kind of miracle doesn’t always happen, but it does happen. And it generally happens to those who truly want it, who reach out with everything they have, who give up their self-will and who are willing to work tirelessly for it. 

     The final line in my book was, “So to dispel the false cliche and myth people don’t change, people do change: I am living proof.” Thus, if there is one thing to take away from this, it’s that anything is possible. Anything.

     Thanks for writing and God bless you, brother.  

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