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"For All Who Know They are Facing Addiction to a Substance, Behavior or Thought Process..."

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Excerpt from
"No Change No Gain - It's All About Choices" by Deb Adler

NOTE: The following is an excerpt from No Change No Gain by U’tana A’qua No gi’ Su.

2005-2007 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved.



           This was written to address issues faced by recovered alcoholics[1], drug addicts, food addicts, smokers and all who know they face addiction to a substance, a person, a behavior pattern or thought process. [2]


In the throes of the dis-ease known as addiction, there is no choice. There is a giving over to the drug or behavior of choice, (be that alcohol, narcotic, food, or behavior pattern), until the addiction takes control. There are those who would argue that this, in itself, is a choice, and initially it is. It is the choice to live in chaos and disorder, which is not our natural state. But it is generally recognized that at some point, the addiction takes over and breaking its stronghold (because denial is addiction’s key survival component) usually requires additional help outside oneself.





To break free, we must first say




            This requires a “surrender” of individual ego and intellect to a greater natural order – the universal order of harmony, of synchronicity.  That’s a lot of flowery language for an experience that is characteristically a physical, emotional and psychological hell. Withdrawal is not pretty. Some would rather die than experience withdrawal. Some do. Nevertheless, harmony is the ultimate goal.  Some call it Serenity.


            To embrace this possibility sets us on the road to what my Elder refers to as “The Beauty Way.”

[1] I defer to the language of the Founders and authors of the Alcoholics Anonymous “Big Book” in their written forward to the first edition (published in 1939): “We, of Alcoholics Anonymous, are more than one hundred men and women who have recovered from a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body.”  The reference to “recovered alcoholics” is repeated again in the 1955 forward to the second edition as well. It occurs when describing the growth of the membership to “150,000 recovered alcoholics.”


[2] Recent bio-chemical brain research has revealed to us that everyone experiences addicted behaviors and chemical sequences mimicking the effects of alcohol, d rugs and other substances. We actually learn to create those chemicals in our brains by repeating certain behavior patterns, which in turn set up the repetition of negative feelings, tripping off the production of certain chemicals in the brain which feed and reinforce those patterns, thus creating a vicious addictive cycle.  The key is to learn how to work with our brain chemistry to produce positive feelings and reinforcement of healthy bio-chemical processes in the brain and body (ex. Serotonin).

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