I imagine a lot of people here get drunk occasionally, and sometimes use drugs. As a person who has recently given up drinking (not an alcoholic or anything, just want to give it up for several reasons), I am beginning to see Religion as a self-imposed form of delusion, but also see being drunk, buzzed, or high as the same thing. Question is, can you be a "bright" and still be a "drunk" even an occasional one ? Not that we cant fall off the wagon every once in a while, but to be an advocate for occasional drunkenness or getting high seems to be at odds with being rational. Thoughts?

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Feel free to join me in the Dims, John.

The ad at the side of the page is telling you to "Stop Drinking Alcohol. Proven Detox System. Just 10 Min/Day for 21 Days.

Guaranteed.

"Scientifically PROVEN System" <---Quotation marks and capitals theirs, not mine.
http://www.atheistnexus.org/group/thedims

Been idle for ages. Sorely needed. "Bright" is not so much annoying as embarrassing.
Winston Churchill would explain the difference better than anyone:

Braddock: "Winston, you are drunk, and what's more you are disgustingly drunk."
Churchill: "Bessie, my dear, you are ugly, and what's more, you are disgustingly ugly. But tomorrow I shall be sober and you will still be disgustingly ugly."

And I guess everyone here will agree that religion is ugly ;-)
Lol... ahhh... God bless alcohol :-P
This must be some sort of boy's club thing that I don't understand. Is this a form of male bonding to chime in with each other when one man mentions he finds a woman conventionally unattractive?
Yeah, I know... and I think the Winston quotation is clever, even though I usually get tired of people bringing looks into situations that don't merit it. Self-elected "vice" police are annoying.

I'll start another topic elsewhere about the "Hurr hurr she's ugly" thing.
Back in the day when me and my cronies visited nightclubs, we'd be drinking our first pint of beer, looking around at the girls and we'd rate them thusly: "Ack, look at her! She's a ten-pinter at least" or ""she's not bad, maybe a three-pinter".

And I love this video, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7h_U9TmRgFQ
I don't drink at all. It's no great virtue or moral/intellectual stance though, I don't drink alcohol because the taste has no appeal to me at all. I don't use any of the usual drugs, because I suspect if I did I would like them too much. I've had pethidine a few times for medical reasons and WOOOOOO!!!!! :-) I can imagine seeing God on pethidine.

My reality is that I'm insulin resistant so I can get totally blissed out on chocolate alone. Chocolate/sugar = sustained instant and huge insulin rush, feelings of happiness, well being and relaxation, sleepiness. I think I can still be a Bright on chocolate. I can't speak for alcohol.

My experience working in a Drug & Alcohol rehabilitation facility though is that if you're intelligent then it's easier to give up alcohol if you believe in God because AA works for a lot of people but you have to be wired up to be able to hand over to a higher power. They say it doesn't have to be God.....but really it usually has to be. Intelligent atheist addicts are hard to treat. The addiction bypasses the logic centres and it's hard to find anything else to stop it. Intelligent people can also be very creative in justifying doing what they want to do, good at pushing barriers, at testing their recovery etc. All up...not good.

As far as your actual question goes I agree that being an advocate for occasional intoxication seems to be at odds with being ration, but the way I see it, it's a lot to expect rational beings to live in this world so hugely populated by theists idiots without turning a blind eye when they embrace the odd period of pharmacological escape. :-)
What about SMART recovery: http://www.smartrecovery.org/. AA is not the only game in town. SMART is secular, it seems to work for people with addictions and it does not require any belief in a higher power or god.
There are lots of different programs. Addiction medicine is about finding which of a wide range of options works best for the person in front of you. My point about religiousity being a help is that AA is very well suited to people who like congregating to talk about handing their lives over to Jesus and it's a good option for a lot of people who are already wired to try to obey God's will. I didn't say it was the only option for recovery.

When I was talking about intelligent people I was talking about particularly intelligent people, not just your generic atheist. SMART is an anagram for self management and recovery training, it's not a description of its target end user. It looks fine, as I say, there are a lot of options just some are "easier" or more successful than others on certain types of people.
With all due respect Limber Lightfoot.
I don't think AA is a very effective a way to address maladjusted behaviors such as chronic alcohol abuse. There are a few scientific studies that have been done that have provided evidence that AA is not much more effective than a person just quitting on their own.

I know there are many different programs out there, as I have tried a few ( AA was by far the worst)
I was exposed to AA (unfortunately) because my mom sent me to it when I was a teenager after I got drunk one night. I tried AA off and on for about 20 years - thinking that it was the easiest most effective way to abstain from alcohol after being persuaded vehemently by those in AA that it was the best way to abstain from alcohol when I was a teenager ( I did not have a well developed BS detector at that time) I like to think I am an intelligent person ( maybe I am not - lol :) ) and I really tried believing in god- but AA just did not work for me at all.

Is there any proof or evidence of your contention that particularly intelligent people have
a more difficult time abstaining or moderating if they have an alcohol abuse problem?
Also, what does "wired up that way" mean? What evidence is there that people are wired up a certain way to " believe in god" or "turn their lives over to a higher power"? ( by the way I am aware of the studies in neuroscience that seemingly show evidence that there is a certain part of the brain activated when it comes to religious belief, but these don't provide evidence that a certain class of people is wired up to believe in god) Do you know of any scientific studies that provide evidence that some programs are "easier" or " more successful" with certain types of people on addressing and altering harmful behaviors such as alcohol abuse? I suppose it may be easier to abstain from alcohol by using AA for certain types of people; but, I don't know of any scientific studies that provide evidence of that. Do you?

Lastly, I know what SMART means because I have used it successfully to abstain from alcohol. What I like about SMART is that one can go to meetings for support or use it's tools on their own without the group. SMART is also not hostile to science and if one "needs" a "god" to alter a behavior, they can certainly try that while using the tools of SMART. But, it is never suggested by people in SMART that one should do so. SMART leaves the choice about what to believe up to the individual - unlike AA.
Hi Warren, I'm an atheist and not a group person so AA wouldn't be my cup of tea either. I'm sorry you were pressured to attend, like forcing someone to go would be conducive to a good outcome. However, in my work I've known a lot of people who have been helped by a 12 Step program and who credit it with saving their lives, relationships and careers. I never said it was the best recovery program, or that it worked for masses of people, or that I'd send everyone along to it, I just said that if you're religious then you have the extra AA option and I've seen it work well for religious types. Lots of people hate it. I would. If I were a problem drinker I'd probably opt for pharmacotherapies and some CBT for a start but equally I might try SMART or something like it.

There are studies to show everything, and a lot of things there aren't studies for. I haven't worked in drug & alcohol for 5 years and the last thing I feel like doing right now is looking for study links so sorry there and feel free to disregard my assertions for lack of footnotes. However, of course different treatments work better or worse for different people. If everyone responded to the same treatment we would only need the one.

The "wired up for god" thing is a pet theory of mine and it makes a lot of sense to me. I'd love to see it proven.

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