Thursday, April 26, 2007

Dead Addict Of The Day

Today's dead addict of the day comes again from the annals of the heroes of my adolescence. There is some unresolved conflict over whether or not the death of was really related to his drug use, but the unofficial explanation of his bathtub death is that he died of the complications arising from the interaction of heroin and alcohol.

Here's a quote of Morrison's describing himself and his work from the Doors official website:
You could say it's an accident that I was ideally suited for the work I am doing. It's the feeling of a bowstring being pulled back for 22 years and suddenly being let go. I am primarily an American, second, a Californian, third, a Los Angeles resident. I've always been atrracted to ideas that were about revolt against authority. I like ideas about the breaking away or overthrowing of established order. I am interested in anything about revolt, disorder, chaos, especially activity that seems to have no meaning. It seems to me to be the road toward freedom--external revolt is a way to bring about internal freedom. Rather than starting inside, I start outside--reach the mental through the physical.
He is one of the great junkies of the 20th century, and it's sad that he's dead. There could have been a lot of interesting music...

Morrison is also one of the great champions of drug culture. That's certainly why I became interested in him...all that quoting of and talk of finding inner truth through physical manipulations certainly appealed to me when I was using.

And he was right, in many ways. I did grow from my experiences with drugs. I'm stronger, smarter, and I have a different perspective than a lot of folks. Especially from my experiences with psychedelics, I think I've become more creative, developed more interesting and rich relationships, and become more compassionate. Maybe these kinds of growth would have happened anyway, but I found a shortcut through experimentation with drugs.

I am having a hard time remembering all of this now, after watching so many people wreck themselves with drugs and alcohol. The line is so fine to walk, but I'd be hypocritical if I didn't acknowledge at least some of the things that I learned from my early drug experiences.

I guess that's also something I'm learning from Nar-Anon, though, is the difference between someone who can dabble (although at the time, it certainly didn't seem like dabbling) and then grow out of it and someone who is an addict struggling with a life-long disease. I learned lessons from using, and then I moved on. He didn't learn lessons. He hasn't moved on. Our experiences of the world and our interactions with drugs are very different, and it's hard for me to understand sometimes. I thought I got the whole addiction business because I thought I'd been through it.

Boy, was I wrong.

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