by Roberto Merante, doctor and TCM master
Listening to the background music in our club I was thinking about how the feeling of peace and devotion was almost perfect. Yes, ALMOST. My only regret was the impossibility to light up my pipe and lose myself in those blueish spirals of smoke.
"Well done, always thinking to your pipe"
"You're great Will, not only I didn't hear you coming, but you can also read my mind?"
"I don't need that, I know my friends! On the other hand, don't you think that depending by a substance to feel good could be a not so healthy behavior?"
"Enlighten us, doc", started the Professor "why there are so many addicted people?"
While I was thining about the questions, I put a spoon (a wood spoon, of course) of Oolong tea inside the beautiful earthenware teapot and than I sat down.
"Let's start from beginning. I think we have to divide addictions in two categories.
Addiction to outer chemical substances: all of these substances can give good feelings or at least diminish the bad feelings. We don't have to consider just drugs, but also medicines which alleviates pain can become a substance that our body needs to keep feeling good. Obviously, this kind of use of medicines will damage our body, if a doctor doesn't follow the therapy. On the other hand, we have substances, as smoke and alcohol, which are commonly used by people, but that have the same collateral effect. Smoke is, even in common thought nowadays, related to tumors or strokes; the bad effect of alcohol are still not considered by people.
Different is the addiction to inner substances: as you might know, our brain produces substances which are essential to the correct neurologic performances. The alteration in production of those substances (let's think about an increase of serotonine) can trigger a state of well-being, but at the same time our brain get used to work with an increased level of substance. In other words, if practising dangerous sports can increase the level of adrenaline and provoke a state of excitement, the excess of adrenergic1 stimulation can result in an addiction to it."
As he was waking up from a too long sleep, the Professor started talking.
"Clever explanation, even if simple, but what about psychologic addiction? Isn't it way more strong than the physical2 one?".
"I agree with you, Augustus" said Nefir "and by this side we can expand this field. If you think about it, there are a lot of pleasant habitudes that in some ways led to addiction. I mean, it would be difficult for us to do without them."
"Revealing Wilhelm's question" I said "I would say that in my case smoking the pipe is not only something I do to assume nicotine3, but the rite of lighting it and tasting its aroma are very relaxing. Anyway I have to say that our mind can't be completely addicted to an habitude if we can do without it in certain moments. In other words, avoiding the excess can considerably reduce the risks bond to it. But now, I would like to dedicate to an habitude4 extremely lovely: drinking a cup of tea with good friends."
Even then, we agree unanimously.