Theories Found in Religion and Ethics
Much of the notion of ethics begins with value systems inherent in people. Part of the challenge any person faces is being able to bend his or her values with that of each individual’s value systems defined by culture, religion, race, gender and society. It is almost an impossible task and complex as Nina Smith, et al suggest, “one of the aspects of good.. governance is.. diversity” (2005, p. 2). Instilling any value system begins with representation. The difference between right and wrong must be directly communicated as a clear and vital mechanism; a cornerstone of society.
Many see rules, laws and codes of ethics as something to be bent, to mold for his or her success. Some cultures and societies are founded on this pursuit that anything is possible. Still this type of behavior has a way of catching up to people. Some people see this as creative thinking, liberal lifestyles and the fast pace of partying. This is how they rationalize such behaviours. Much of ethics, codes of conduct, rules and laws come from the moral structure in which an individual is raised. The structure of these ethics and laws come from a religious foundation or belief system.
In today’s age of anything goes, many people do not have this type of moral value system in place but we will explore it as a construct into how religion, specifically Christianity can be a double-edged sword with regard to addiction. So much is written about drug addiction in relation to Christianity. Mostly God’s word in the footsteps of Jesus speaks to addicts as a means of finding salvation and quitting the addiction. After all, the Twelve Steps are loosely based on a Christian dynamic of the Higher Power. From the Our Daily Bread Devotional, Anonomus writes:
Today pull up the little weeds, The sinful thoughts subdue, Or they will take the reins themselves And someday master you. (Gustafson, March 12, 2007) This speaks directly to the mind of the addict or anyone battling a crisis. The Bible discusses how as humans we cannot hide from God with our human behavior. “God won’t be mocked is strategically centered in the context of reaping what we sow. We can’t fool Him by hiding our inner motive” (Moore, 2007, p. 77). Moore implores that God will hold us (humans) accountable to want we have done.
That it is indeed the fight between His goodness and Satan’s evilness where we fall to motive. Satan invented sin in all forms to distract humans from our true goal of serving good. Moore has interviewed many addicts mainly of alcohol and has persisted in asking why. Why lose everything—job, family, love and other material possessions for the addiction. What many have told in confidence is because they felt like it. They liked how it made them feel or more importantly, what it didn’t make them feel (Moore, 2007, p. 81). What Moore thinks goes wrong and what motivates the addict to do drugs are deformed desires.
The Bible writes that “Your Law is within my heart” meaning that knowing right from wrong begins and ends with God. What happens with drug addicts is that the desire overpowers the law. The predisposition toward drug abuse blinds people. Satan is relying on people’s weakness and this in itself motivates, gravitates toward bad behavior. Moore discusses the amount work and falling from God’s word that must happen before “God reshaped.. disfigured desires and somewhere along the way, God’s law transferred from the stone tablets to soft tissue of the heart” (2007, p.83).
Part of what motivates the addict past God’s Law is trust. They do not trust in His love. Much of this theory is bounded in humans as a culture needing to place blame or reasoning somewhere and therefore, blaming science or genetics. It is not my fault, God’s fault, my failure to belief in the order the builds society; it’s my family or my make-up that motivates me. Research suggests as the following paragraphs will explore; this is somewhat true. As humans, whether it is values or genes, we are all flawed.