Moral Psychology & Its Absence In Psychotherapy Today
"We doctors have realized for a long time (not anymore, mind you) that some form of moral psychology was of urgent importance to alcoholics, but its application presented difficulties beyond our conception (um, yeah, pills can't change people into better people)." - Alcoholics Anonymous, xxvii
What is moral psychology? And why is it absent in psychotherapy today?
Moral psychology is treating the soul through moral change or moral action. Thus, the desired effect that healing morally has on one's soul is procured through the application of moral psychology, and it is crucial to the recovery of an alcoholic or drug addict. Without moral change, we cannot heal spiritually, and if we cannot heal spiritually, we are doomed.
The Big Book saved my life... and there is a very specific reason for that. It taught me that while there is no hope of achieving lifelong sobriety without healing and changing both morally and spiritually, there is hope if I do. This was prophetic to me, and I knew deep in my heart it was the truth. After just a few pages, I became acutely aware that I needed spiritual help more than anything else, and I knew it with every cell in my body.
None of my doctors, psychologists, psychiatrists, addiction counselors, or even the knuckleheads from local AA meetings told me this was necessary. "Keep comin'" was all they would mutter, and maybe a few other useless slogans like, "Sit down, shut up and wait for the miracle." Of course, slogan recovery isn't sufficient, nor will it ever be for anyone who is addicted, but that doesn't matter because many, if not most, who populate meetings aren't alcoholics. I was told that I would always be a chronic, hopeless addict, with all sorts of mental disorders, who needed to just keep coming and to avoid people, places and things that "made" me want to use. No Big Book. No God. No inventory. No moral change. No right action. No solution. I wondered what program this was since it was so markedly different than the one prescribed in the Big Book, otherwise known as "Alcoholics Anonymous."
Avoiding people, places and things... calling my sponsor while teetering on the edge outside of a bar... sitting down, shutting up... waiting for a miracle that will clearly never occur with me sitting on my ass... all of it I knew in my heart was wrong.
Any view or treatment strategy that leaves out moral and spiritual repair is doomed to fail. This is a fact. At least that is my experience. I failed for 15 years following the advice of doctors and science and untreated, atheist AA members, but then suddenly, when someone opened up the Big Book and explained addiction to me, I was lit up inside. I applied the Steps with everything I have within me and the fire within grew. I have been free of addiction, mental illness and medication ever since. That was 13 years ago.
My life is also different. Before, when I managed to get sober for a time, from point A to point B nothing changed. I knew I wasn't better. I still sank into depressions. I was still driven and overwhelmed by fear, insecurity, self-consciousness, etc. I knew in my heart that I wasn't okay. I knew it was only a matter of time before I used again. And I did. Over and over and over.
So it is a disservice of the highest degree to sell addicts and their families remedies and false solutions that are fundamentally flawed, Godless, and destined to fail from the outset. Any solution for addiction that is morally and spiritually hollow is not a solution. I've tried going the Godless, action-less route and trust me, you don't want to go there. It is a waste of your time, it is a waste of your family's time, and it is a waste for your poor mother's time.
Finally, why is moral psychology absent in the so-called psychotherapy of today?
Psyche refers to the soul, and thus psychology literally refers to the study of the soul. Thus, psychotherapy should appropriately refer to the treatment of the soul. And trust me, we are not treating the soul with today's degenerate approach of moral relativity.
It seems obvious why this has happened, as the decline and depravity in culture has been steep, pronounced and in your face. Culture has deteriorated away from moral absolutes, away from right and wrong, away from family, children and God. In fact, all of the once healthy, spiritual principles and institutions that kept people sane, responsible, open, educable, productive, purposeful and truly compassionate are actively and vehemently demonized by the tyrannical and progressive status quo of mass media, education, music, film, etc.
So is it any wonder why no one is getting better, why we have become so indifferent, why we have come to hate God so much? Is it any wonder when the Orwellian indoctrination has been well under way for so long with little to no resistance from those who remain upright?
Personally, I've had enough of being told what to think, what not to think, what to say, what not to say, what to do and what not to do. I'm sick of being told that I am evil for having a different opinion, even if that opinion is rooted in reason, ration, logic, truth, science, history, economics and what used to be the universal principles of right and wrong. I'm sick of the progressive authoritarianism taking place and infecting our children, so I for one, as a father, am not going to shut up about addiction or anything else.
I have no interest in my children being sexualized in kindergarten, taught that faith is stupid and evil, taught that freedom, liberty, hard work, individual accomplishment and success are just bigoted tropes of the past. I have no interest in them being taught what is "virtuous" by loony tune communist professors and politicians, braindead puppets on CNN/MSNBC et al, or the imbeciles in Hollywood, the music industry and professional sports. I refuse to infect them with the doctrine of envy, mediocrity, dependence, unfounded guilt and state/mass media control of their minds, resources or any other thing that is their own. They are my children, not the government's and not yours. They are going to be makers, not takers.
You hear today, for instance, that tax cuts are the people (the few who still work in the private sector) stealing from the government and/or other people. How could anyone who is not insane or brainwashed believe such an absurd statement? It is precisely the other way around. They are already going to become financial serfs with a national debt at 20+ trillion and unfunded liabilities at 220+ trillion, do we also have to ply the population that taxing them to the hilt and bleeding them out is actually just and moral? My God.