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"Blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted. "     Jesus of Nazareth AD 30 as reported in Matthew's biography 5: 4
How many alcoholics in Jersey do you know? How many former alcoholics? What's the percentage of the one over the other?

Same with smokers. And with obesity.

What about the biggest such grouping - "all addictives". How many? How many released? It seems to be very easy to become addicted - and a million times harder to escape addiction. Because addiction is such a problem we even try to minimise it by using euphemisms. Copying the civil servants on Yes Minister, to have an addiction is to have an irregular noun, which changes with the person referred to: when it’s me, I have a liking; when it’s you, you have a habit; when it’s someone else, he has an addiction.

The word "addict" was first used in the English language by Sir Thomas More (1534). In his On the Passion (of Jesus Christ), he referred to this man, Jesus Christ, being addicted (we now say "given over") to the Jerusalem leaders in AD 33, and then addicted ("given over") to the Roman military powers on the same day.

An addict today is still a person who is given over to something - something that - to him and in his eyes - does him good. Certainly, alcohol (and tobacco) does "do me good". It is highly beneficial for a time and that makes it very easy to become given over to it - for one's good. Underlying all addiction, therefore, is the pursuit of "good" for me - for my SELF, "because I’m worth it" (to parody the L'Oreal adverts).
‘The miller does not observe the noise of his own mill.’ (C H Spurgeon, speaker and writer, 1834-1892)
A former alcoholic here in Jersey pointed out to me a surprising thing. He said that very few addicts are able, really and truly, to see themselves as they truly are. Those that do, he said, will often find release. Such folk are really blessed and happy when they have seen that the very thing which they greatly seek after and which does them "good" is, in fact, the very thing that is killing them.

"Blessed are those who mourn ...[their own self-will] ... for they will be comforted." The Greek for "blessed" is makarios meaning “happy”.) Happy are those who mourn for they (those who see the cause of their unhappiness) will be comforted.

The States of Jersey, Alcoholics Anonymous and other groups and individuals in Jersey are doing super things to assist the addicted. And it seems that all agree with my friend that none of them can help a person who cannot admit that he or she is "given over" to the very thing, good as it appears to be for them, that will lead to early death.

But does this generalised pursuit of "what is good for me" (in which we all engage) also lead to an early death - for me?
‘The chains of habit are generally too small to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.' (Samuel Johnson, English writer, 1709-1784)
Well ....... yes ....... because such pursuit is exclusive of all outside of its self. The man and woman who gives himself over to a career to gain wealth for personal and even for family use will, unless he or she sees that addiction, pursue self until his days run out, until he dies. That person is "given over" to himself - but cannot see it and cannot see any other "good" worth working for.

But, but ... is that being given over to death? Yes, because death completes the "self" package, ties it up and ends it.

Such is the stuff of "self-addiction". Just as my (former – alcoholic) friend is so blessed and happy now that he has seen and escaped from his self-addiction, it seems (see above) that Jesus himself, in AD 30 at the beginning of his ministry, taught everyone who would listen that those who mourn their own self-addiction are truly "happy".

They are truly happy for they will be comforted through Jesus Christ himself.

He was (is) the only non-self-addicted human being the world has ever seen. He was totally self-giving and came to this earth to ‘walk the talk’. Yet (back to Sir Thomas More) he was "addicted" - given over - unjustly but willingly to death as a criminal by execution. He was prepared to be given over to death in that way not so as to please himself but so as to give his resurrection life to addicts, especially self-addicts.
Richard Syvret

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