The Selfish Brain: Learning from Addiction
Why is the brain so vulnerable to the effects of alcohol and other drugs? How does addiction echo through families, cultures, and history? What is it that families and communities do to promote or prevent addiction?
These are some of the questions that this thorough, thoughtful, and well-reasoned book answers--in clear, comprehensible terms. From the basics of brain chemistry to the workings of particular drugs such as alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, cocaine, and heroin, The Selfish Brain explains how individuals and communities become trapped in destructive habits--and how various treatments and approaches lead to recovery and whole, healthy lives.
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I have to agree about the points he's made about marijuana. Without needing to even look at the research, many people probably know several habitual users. In my experience at least, a very select few daily marijuana abusers end up making much out of themselves or reaching their full potential. From personal experience with ADHD as well, I'd like to point out that amphetamines can also be helpful in the short term, but have extreme detrimental effects over the long term. Again, I have witnessed this in myself and the people around me. I have no hard evidence to back any of this up, but I do have a great understanding of science and a degree in biology. The empirical evidence I have accumulated is not in haste. Marijuana saps people of their true potential when abused on a large scale. It prevents them from developing healthy coping mechanisms for life's problems, and has the potential to easily go beyond killing boredom. Insidious which means proceeding in a gradual, subtle way, but with harmful effects is a truly apt word for marijuana. I think there is a popular misconception these days that marijuana does not cause any harm to a user because it's detrimental effects are often compared to other drugs. All this is done for is to downplay the real effects of marijuana. This publication is right to point out that marijuana acts differently than other drugs and its effects are not readily apparent. In my opinion, the greatest evil of marijuana is that it provides quick relief from anxiety, depression, boredom, medical issues, etc. while in the long term never creating a lasting and truly healthy mechanism for dealing with any of these. I know this from experience. Marijuana makes users into lethargic boobs. I don't think there is any recreational drug in existence that is free of enfeebling side effects. If you cannot learn to enjoy life without needing drugs then you are bound to never learn this lesson and are probably a current user.
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