Well, we’re back, into another chapter of Debi Pearl’s big bad book of brains “Create a Better Brain Through Neuroplasticity” and this week’s chapter is supposedly written by Michael Pearl. It looks like a rehash of the same article/lecture of his from years ago about addictions. Last week was the homeschooling chapter that did not mention how to homeschool.
This chapter makes as much sense as Michael’s advice above about dealing with an angry man.
We start here:
“The hunger in the brain provokes the body to crave.”
Eh. Sort of. This is a simple watered-down explanation of addiction. What he misses here is that in order to crave most of the time there has to be an exposure or a precipitating event. Without that you do not find Mongolian sheep farmers on the steppes craving a vial of crack. Or even Baltimore inner city kids wanting fermented yaks milk.
Michael explains how science can almost read your thoughts through brain scans and brain mapping, going here:
“If science continues to advance in a short time your most secret thoughts might be transparent.”
Is this meant as a threat to try and thought police everyone? I mean, really, we have so many random weird thoughts per day that are just sort of out there that benefit no one. I reject the idea that they are sin or that science is going to spy on our inner weird monologues. Mikey does warn that God already knows all your icky thoughts.
He then goes to say that addiction is normal and natural, it’s a survival mechanism before explaining that you finding a bargain at the dollar store releases happy chemicals and hard wires you to look for bargains. Sorry, but that is not addiction either.
Addiction tends to be overwhelming, an unstoppable inner itch that will not be denied. Nothing like the happiness of a bargain leading you to shop again at that same store.
Mike talks about being addicted to witnessing, or helping out in church, that they are positive addictions. Still not addictions. He goes on to claim that anything that releases a flood of dopamine, for good or for bad, forms addictions.
Then he breaks it down to two types of addiction, first, substance addiction. He talks about the plant-derived drugs. Oddly enough Mikey goes on to approve of marijuana based CBD oil and the like. Just not for recreational use. Small steps I suppose.
Then he throws out this about people who use psychiatric drugs prescribed legally.
“In any given church, from horse-and-buggy Amish to staunch Baptist or devout Catholic, you will find a high percentage of the ladies and some of the men using some sort of brain-altering, feel-good stimulant.”
Do you know why that is or even care? It’s because of the high load of impossible expectations and being treated like inferior serfs that women experience in the church. A theology that calls them lesser and flawed tends to create mental disorders in previously healthy people. It’s not the people, it is the toxic belief systems driving this. There are copious studies linking religion to high antidepressant use across the board.
Mike never addresses lab made drugs, like meth, or adderal, or opioids oddly enough. Not a word about alcohol or nicotine either, even if more people are addicted to those two over most others.
His second addition is behavioral addiction. He lists his top bunch:
“..shopping, playing video games, pornography, exercise, gambling, eating and even texting..”
He claims that the reward center being stroked and the release of dopamine makes it identical to drug addiction. He goes on to claim that people that repeat these behaviors are just like dope fiends shooting up in a stash house. He claims all addictions, even excessive golfing (ha!) are the same, except for one. PORN!
He claims porn is the worst addiction, taking up more neural pathways before it starts killing off brain cells and causing an intellectual and cognitive decline in users.
“In other words, the part of the brain that is stimulated by pornography begins to lose connection with the part of the brain that makes moral judgments and decisions.”
Not so fast Mr. Anti Pornhub! The science he’s citing here is just rudimentary. Scientist are only beginning to look into the science of what happens to the brain on porn. It’s not settled or definitive yet! Makes me laugh to be reading this chapter during the Covid 19 pandemic knowing that Pornhub has made some of their content free in order to influence people to stay home. Mike says this:
“….never been a time in human history when debauchery has been so affordable and able to be accessed…”
He goes on to claim that leaving a homeschooled boy of ten alone with a computer is the same thing as dropping him off at a Roman orgy with a fistful of shekels and a jarful of STDS.
Micheal then rants about the types of porn available and I cannot stop laughing. His descriptions of the debauchery go way way way beyond the usual fare at sites like Pornhub. He has a super vivid imagination.
And then we’re on to child prostitutes and sex trafficking. A real problem indeed, but how did we get from smoking pot to a baby/chicken/feces orgy? This is getting progressively weirder here, and not much about brains that is real I can see. Here he talks about how to make sure the child falls into Satan’s porno trap:
“…. make sure all parents gave their children access to social media, video games, Netflix, Amazon, cable, cell phones, and the internet..”
Amazon? Really? I’ve looked through the Amazon Prime offerings and have yet to see any pornography offerings, Mikey. Pages and pages follow of him claiming all of this destroys brains and wrecks people, and SATAN, SATAN, SATAN! He’s way more the hysteric fear mongerer in his writing than Debi is.
Debi interjects with a stupid story about a female porn addict friend that likes to shriek out for Jesus to save her every time she has a pornographic thought.
All of Mikey’s advice on conquering addictions is only about porn and it basically boils down to the advice in the anti masturbation manual that the Mormon church once published. He never once explains how to overcome a drug addiction, how to deal with alcoholic cravings, the cries of the body for certain substances or anything else, just porn.
Annnnnnnnnd we’re done. Now I feel dirty after reading Mikey’s unfettered take on what types of porn are out there. Need to go scrub with bleach and a hard bristled brush. Next week Debi explains true love. Oh lovely, just please, no more weird odd sick porn!
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