HI Joshua,

Is there something to ponder with the learning that so many people who have found Joshua have experience – to varying degrees – alcoholism? Many have parents and some have spouses and even a handful of us students are dealing with alcoholism.

What’s up with that?


Dear Allyson,

All humans are exploring certain aspects of themselves in varying degrees of dependance. In the dependance of some physical aspect of this reality, one maintains their journey of self-discovery. You bring up the dependance on alcohol. Some depend on appreciation, love, food, self-image, sex, validation, etc. One such exploration is not significantly different than any other. It is the exploration of self-control or more explicitly, control itself. All humans are exploring the idea of control.

Many humans explore the notion that they can maintain some semblance of control of the conditions or people in their lives. Others explore the idea of self-control. It is the idea that one can create certain feelings through the manipulation of something outside of themselves, even if that manipulation is themselves. What is the difference between controlling your children in order to avoid feeling fear and controlling yourself in order to avoid feeling fear. Remember, fear is negative emotion.

Let’s say you have a child who is behaving badly in your judgment. This causes you to feel negative emotion, which is simply fear. It is the fear that the child will harm himself, another or embarrass you. And so you seek to control that child’s behavior. You believe that if the child was different than he is, you would feel better. Therefore, you reward the child when he is good by offering him your acceptance and you punish the child when he is bad by withholding your love.

The same process is applied to yourself. You feel fear when your behaviors are not in alignment with what you deem acceptable, respectable or “good” in your own judgment. Therefore, you admonish yourself when you are unable to control your behavior and you accept yourself when you do. You perceive that you are on the right track when you are able to abide by your own rules and you feel as if you are being bad when you break those rules. You simply do not accept yourself as you are.

Alcohol is one way you explore this idea of control. Drugs, food, sex, video games, porn, gossip, laziness, etc. are also examples of behaviors that could become out of control in one’s judgment. As you criticize yourself for your behavior, your idea of control becomes more and more restrictive. Since you are unable to feel good through this sort of control, you take it further and further and further. Of course, control does not and cannot work. Control is the old approach to life. You cannot coerce the conditions enough to make yourself feel something you do not already feel. This violates the rules of the game. The only possible solution is the absolute acceptance of yourself, all others and the conditions as they exist in the moment.

What do you think would work best in a relationship with a child; love or control? What approach would yield the best results in a relationship with a mate; love or control? And so as you see that the obvious answer to these questions is love, you must also understand that the most effective way to approach how you feel about yourself is complete love and acceptance. There is no wrong in the universe and thus there are no wrong behaviors. It is not wrong to eat food to excess, it simply is not in alignment with who you really are and it does not feel good. It is not wrong to use alcohol and drugs to excess, it simply does not feel good. When you remove the judgment of right or wrong and replace it with how it feels, you can more towards feeling good.

Feeling good is not right or wrong, it is simply more enjoyable and preferable. Removing the pain of life through the use of an outside stimulant seems effective when you are in victim mode. However, as the creator of your own reality, you can remove judgment and simply move towards what feels good in the long run. If you are not willing to process your limiting beliefs internally in order to diminish the intensity of fear, then you will continue to rely on outside stimuli. However, when you can look at this reality and yourself from a higher perspective, your fears will be diminished, because nothing really matters other than how you feel.

With our love,
We are Joshua