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Substance Use Disorder (SUD) is the clinical term for what is called ‘addiction’ to substances or ‘drugs’. This involves continued use despite negative effects, craving, and relapse. The drugs change how the brain functions, producing cravings and withdrawal making relapse rates high, and fueling a vicious cycle. Maintaining sobriety and preventing relapse is essential.
How the brain works with drugs, how the drugs change the brain, and how the changes of the brain control behavior are only a part of the story. These effects demonstrate physiological results and symptoms but not necessarily the cause. Most people who try drugs do not become ‘addicts’. To truly get to the cause you need to determine what was the underlying need to use the drug, to begin with.
‘Behind every craving is a thirst for transcendence or wholeness’ – Carl Gustav Jung
Who doesn’t have cravings? Who isn’t trying to become more whole? This supports the general idea that most people, in fact, have a form of ‘addiction’ but that society only categorized and stigmatized the most disruptive forms.
‘Spirituality’ has been defined as “the experience of conscious involvement in the project of life-integration through self-transcendence toward the ultimate value one perceives“. Integration is to bring together multiple parts to function as one. Transcendence is to rise above or go beyond the limits. In this context, Dr. Blacktop presents spirituality as “working toward synchronizing the many parts of the self to go beyond limitations and boundaries to find more wholeness, and as a result sustainable happiness”. In this view, ‘spiritual’ is a broad term that can be applied to all aspects of life, especially addiction.
The Science and Spirituality of Addiction Talk will cover the following topics within Substance Use Disorder (SUD):
Dr. Jordan Blacktop, Ph.D. now lives in Oregon where he loves to spend time out in nature, hiking, skiing, running, dancing, and committing to various yogic disciplines. He continues to prioritize his own inner work and personal development.
Dr. Blacktop was born and raised in Western Michigan into a family of mental health professionals, where his interest in the science of mind began at a very young age. Dr. Blacktop received his undergraduate degree in Biopsychology, graduate degree (Ph.D.) in Biology/Neuroscience, and was a postdoctoral research fellow, visiting scholar, and assistant professor. He studied, researched, and taught how the brain changes function because of drug use and how to prevent relapse. His expertise includes the integration of biology, neuroscience, psychology, physiology, and anatomy. Dr. Blacktop has engaged in the investigation, mentorship, and teaching of a broad scientific palate of systems and cellular biology applications toward understanding wholeness.
At a pivotal moment in his academic career, Dr. Blacktop was gifted with a sudden, unexpected, and powerful transformative emergent process. What some call “spiritual”, “mystical”, “energetic”, etc. have scientifically been referred to as emergent phenomena. Emergent is defined as ‘the process of coming into being’ or ‘from invisible to visible’. This led to an ongoing and integrative process of the scientific with the emergent. The connection between emergent phenomenon and addiction led to his interest in an integrative approach to both substance use and mental health disorders. This led to the development of Solscience, LLC which bridges the gap from science and the emergent for healing purposes.
Presenter’s Website: https://SolScience.org
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