Addiction and Grace by Gerald May

By reads
In books on addiction
Jun 7th, 2014


addiction and grace

A great book on spirituality that also delves into the human brain and healing addiction, take a look at

Addiction and Grace by Gerald May

Written by a psychiatrist in 1988, this important book has been revised and updated multiple times and continues to be a top seller in the recovery and addictions category.  The author, who acknowledges that he has many of his own theological assumptions, takes a unique look at human beings and their interactions with a higher power, or deity, in the process of recovery.  May believes that humans have an inborn desire for God yet, due to outside influences, we channel our attentions to other areas of our lives.   We do this in one of two ways: Repression or Addiction.  When we are able to move away from these things, he states that the opposite of addiction is "freedom".  I can agree with that wholeheartedly.

Grace is the most powerful force in the universe. It can transcend repression, addiction, and every other internal or external power that seeks to oppress the freedom of the human heart. Grace is where our hope lies..” - Addiction and Grace, Gerald May

An interesting thing that May talks about at length is what happens when the addictive behavior is stopped, which he equates to ending up in the desert.  In essence, he is stating that a person that quits an addictive behavior is depriving themselves of what they existed upon for a long time, leaving them in barren and frightening territory.    He also goes on to talk about the role and importance of Community in recovery and how moving away from addictions can never just be a private thing between ourselves and God. We must have community with others to give and receive the message.  This is a great book with some profound explanations on spirituality and recovery.  You can find it here:

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2 Responses to “Addiction and Grace by Gerald May”

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  2. […] modest sculptures in pagan rituals, sometimes, as that is their company, not my own. The fact is opiate addiction is just not a victimless offense, since many would have you […]

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