Tuesday, November 27, 2012

My Soma


Yesterday, we talked about the fictional drug, soma (like alcohol without the side effects.)
(please note- I refer to the fictional drug from Brave New World, not this drug.)

And I asked you, if soma were for sale today, would you take it?

What would you do to escape your bad days, your trials, your emotions?

Now, let me ask a more pointed question… 
Is this kind of thing available, and DO you take it?

Because I do. 

As I read Brave New World, I judged the infantile people in the story who lived life in their comfortable bubbles, soothing any negative emotion with a dose of soma.

How could they? Don’t they see that by living their lives in a state of numbness, that they are missing… something? How can they be content to simply live life going from one pleasure to the next? How could they be happy by simply using each other, and letting themselves be used?  How could they possibly feel content with small, numbed hearts, capable of shrugging off any suffering or trial in themselves or others as if they were nothing?

Now at this point, I am tempted to rant and rave about our culture and how it encourages the same kind of numbness. Did you know they legalized marijuana here and there? Have you heard how people try to control their kids by drugging them?  Have you heard how easily doctors prescribe anti-depressants?!

(*Please note- In no way do I mean to criticize those who take medicine for medical problems. I take anti-depressants, and they are God's gift to me.)

But I can’t complain about our culture, without telling you what I found at home, right here, in my own heart.

Numbness. Calm happiness. I like these things too.
In fact, I like them so much, I often find myself seeking them, ALL day long. And then when little people get in my way, I become frustrated. So I treat myself to a candy bar. And when my body complains that I have not rested it, I grab another cup of coffee.  I prop myself up with food and drink, not using it as fuel to help me do my job, but using it to make myself calm, happy, or numb.

I turn off the news because it makes me sad. I avert my eyes from those who suffer, and I go on facebook instead. 

There are many things that turn to when I am unsettled, like an addict to her drug.
Suffering is simply not natural.

What kinds of things do you use like soma?
What do you do to escape your bad days?

Read Part 3

4 comments:

  1. Yes you are right, sometimes I think that the desire to escape reality is limited to addicts (because of my own experience), but it seems to be a part of anyone and everyone who has to walk through this broken world.

    The big book of Alcoholics Anonymous calls this the "irritable, restless, and discontent" nature, the strange thing which makes us so very unsettled until we can escape. Again, I think it carries over to people other than alcoholics too. The only fix, the ONLY fix is the spiritual one.

    While I am free today of my more severe addictions which have the really painful consequences, I still get the irritable restless and discontent. Something just anything at all to feel better RIGHT NOW please.

    My escapes now are naps (not always a bad thing), and food. Doing something nice for someone else also helps me get away from myself, as counter-intuitive as it can be at the time. As Adam Duritz said, how am I gonna keep myself away from me....

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    1. LOVE the way you rounded off your comments with a little counting crows!

      I think you are right, that the desire to escape is part of all of us, and really it's completely natural given the brokenness of this world.

      There are definitely some healthier ways to escape :) more on that soon!

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  2. In addition, there is almost no escape route, no "soma" which actually has no side effects or consequences. Isn't it incredible how, in trying to escape suffering, we often succeed only in heaping more of it onto our own heads? Talk about the insanity of self-will...

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    Replies
    1. Absolutely. But wow, how impossible it is to see at the time.

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