Putting the Soul
back in Psychology!
Why failing to stay sober is a grave sin.
[Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay]
"Wine is a luxurious thing, and drunkenness riotous: whosoever is delighted therewith shall not be wise." Proverbs 20:1 Douay-Rheims
When I drink alcohol, which is rare, I like to drink Pinot Noir, which is my favorite. I particularly like the brand, Mark West due to its affordability while maintaining a very good flavor.
That being said, to choose to do something that inhibits the proper or best use of our intellect and free will, is an abuse and misuse of them, which impedes us from making 100% rational charitable decisions in obedience to Truth/Love/Virtues Himself, which is harmful to ourselves and how we interact with others.
Therefore, lack of sobriety is a grave sin of omission against charity.
"But speak thou the things that become sound doctrine: That the aged men be sober, chaste, prudent, sound in faith, in love, in patience. The aged women, in like manner, in holy attire, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teaching well: That they may teach the young women to be wise, to love their husbands, to love their children, To
be discreet, chaste, sober, having a care of the house, gentle,
obedient to their husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. Young men, in like manner, exhort that they be sober. In all things shew thyself an example of good works, in doctrine, in integrity, in gravity," Titus 2:1-6 Douay-Rheims
The noun, "Inhibition", according to The The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition, December, 2022, is:
"The act of inhibiting or the state of being inhibited. Something that restrains, blocks, or suppresses. Conscious or unconscious restraint of a behavioral process, desire, or impulse."
Therefore, inhibition, in one sense of the word, is when we choose with our intellect and free will of our soul to not engage in what is the absence of Truth/Love/Virtues be it interiorly intellectually and exteriorly physically, when we are tempted to, and to avoid the occasion of situations that can become or are the absence of Truth/Love/Virtues.
When we are not sober, we do not have full self-control use of our intellect and free will of our immaterial Soul, which is a misuse of our intellect and free will.
The reason we are "uninhibited" when we are not sober, is because the chemical, (along with the demonic who takes advantage of us failing to being sober in order to influence us to choose what is false, unloving/unvirtuous), hinders the brain, which in turn hinders our proper use of our intellect and free will of our Soul, (the lesser can hinder the greater so saith Dr. St. Thomas Aquinas), to think about and choose what is True, Loving/ and Virtuous and reject what is false, unloving/unvirtuous.
"Be sober and watch: because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, goeth about seeking whom he may devour." 1 Peter 5:8 Douay-Rheims
When we are not sober, our brain and by its hindering extension our intellect and free will of our Soul, are "clouded" in a sense, and we cannot be fully present to present reality, thereby making us automatically rejecting of the presence of The Divine (Truth/Love/Virtues Himself) and His Will.
For the typical human, when we are sober, we automatically think about; i.e. care about, potential consequences to our actions, at least for exterior acts...and at the same time we are, at the very least, more open to and receptive of the True/Loving/Virtuous influence of The Divine, Who is always in present reality with us.
When we are not sober, we have "no fear" of potential consequences either imagined or real. Unfortunately, fear of suffering consequences, is the primary prideful selfish way we make all of our decisions, because we don't truly primarily care about doing what is True, Right, Good, Loving, and Virtuous for the sake of God, ourselves, and others...and this, being a sinful way of making decisions, so saith St Augustine, is still better, i.e. less sinful, than choosing what is false, unloving/unvirtuous.
"And, indeed, this is already sin, to desire those things which the law of God forbids, and to abstain from them through fear of punishment, not through love of righteousness." -Dr. St. Augustine of Hippo
Even if we do consciously try to make all of our decisions primarily based on what is True, Right, Good, Loving, and Virtuous because they are such, this is still typically because we know they will make us feel good or we will receive some future reward, while we are trying to avoid feeling bad; i.e. avoiding suffering, as our primary goal. As naturally good as this is, it is not Holiness; i.e. imitation of The Divine.
"Wherefore having the loins of your mind girt up, being sober, trust perfectly in the grace which is offered you in the revelation of Jesus Christ, As children of obedience, not fashioned according to the former desires of your ignorance: But according to him that hath called you, who is holy, be you also in all manner of conversation holy:” 1 Peter 1:13-15 Douay-Rheims
We human beings do everything for one or more "reasons"; aka intentions. The primary reason that human beings do not stay sober (whether claimed to be an accident or not), is because we want to make ourselves feel good or feel better, which typically includes wanting to stop feeling bad in some way and degree (whether self-aware or not). This means that we are using a material means to try to make ourselves spiritually; i.e. psychologically / emotionally stop feeling bad by distraction. This reasoning is a form of the sin of idolatry. How so?
Idolatry is when we make anything more important than God, which is done, among other times, when we use anything other than going to God to make ourselves stop psychologically feeling bad and psychologically feel good. This also makes psychotropic medications and all other material and human or animal relational coping, when used primarily to stop, distract, or prevent oneself from bad psychological emotions and feelings, objectively a form of idolatry. How so?
When we intellectually sin, we frequently cause ourselves harmful psychological emotions and feelings. Sin begets sin, which means if our intellectual act is a sin, then so is the psychological emotion or feeling we cause by it. Sin is anything that is the absence of Truth/Love/Virtues. God is Truth/Love/Virtues. If we are using any material thing or any human or animal relationship to try to stop or prevent our sinful emotional suffering that we are choosing when we intellectually sin, then we are not repenting to God of the sin, which itself is a sin of omission. This is exactly what we do when we use psychotropic medications, or any other material or human coping for bad emotions and feelings, including not stay sober. This includes lack of sobriety with any mind altering chemical.
It is a sin to use a material object or concept or a human or animal relationship in order to try to achieve happiness: peace, contentment, joy, love, fulfillment. Because happiness: peace, contentment, joy, love, and fulfillment are God and only come from God. Therefore to try to obtain them in any other way is a direct form of idolatry and rejection of God. Otherwise known as "bad coping". Idolatry is a mortal sin by which you choose to reject Truth/Love/Virtues and lose what little you had.
Are you disagreeing with what I am not saying? It is not a sin to do something enjoyable and enjoy oneself when what one is doing is an 100% objective good in reason, time, place, manner, amount, and kind. It is not a sin to feel satisfaction and pleasure; i.e. consolation for doing something objectively good.
Furthermore, to try to avoid and prevent all suffering is the absence of Truth/Love/Virtues and therefore a sin. How so? Because there is good suffering both emotional and physical that is not sinful nor caused by sin, which is needed for our good. Some examples of good psychological suffering are things like charitable sadness, proper guilt, and healthy grieving. An example of good physical suffering is the signal we receive when we are hurting ourselves so that we stop, like when we are touching something hot and we didn't realize.
Without suffering there is no sacrifice, without sacrifice their is no growth in Truth/Love/Virtues.
"But be thou vigilant, labour in all things, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill thy ministry. Be sober." 2 Timothy 4:5 Douay-Rheims