Addiction & Treatment
2007 - BRI Publishes the 11th Edition of the Jude Thaddeus Program
The Conscience and The Brain.
The 11th Edition of the Jude Thaddeus Program was not, as the 10th edition was, merely a move away from Alcoholics Anonymous' God solution; it was a condemnation of the God solution. In the 11th Edition, the footnotes are at the beginning of the book, under which is the heading JTA vs. AA. Under the heading of JTA vs. AA on page XVI is the following paragraph:
"Consider that the fundamental tenets of conventional treatment and Alcoholics Anonymous (pg. 60, Alcoholics Anonymous): 'â€¦make clear three pertinent ideas: (a) that we were alcoholic and could not manage our own lives, (b) that probably no human power could have relieved our alcoholism, (c) that God could and would if He were sought.' The members of Alcoholics Anonymous and the professionals providing treatment services further reduce this propaganda for the abdication of personal responsibility to the following platitude: 'I can't; He can; I think I'll let Him.' To wit, Alcoholics Anonymous and conventional treatment are based on individual powerlessness and abdication of all personal responsibility."
Earlier in this report, the Bishop of Albany, a studied theologian, was asked if God could cure alcoholism. He responded "God does what God does." That was in 2007, the Baldwin researchers came to understand the profound simplicity of the Bishop's response. The Bishop's answer allowed that God can do virtually anything which includes curing excessive drug and alcohol use but it also allowed for the possibility that just because God can cure excessive use of drugs and/or alcohol, it does not necessarily follow that God does cure excessive use of drugs and/or alcohol.
Consider Christians and Jews are being slaughtered in the Middle East (January 2015). Could God stop that? Of course, God can do virtually anything. But does He? Scripture addresses this very question, (KJV) Genesis 1:26 "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth."
Whether you believe in God and Scripture is really not relevant, because if you do believe in God and Scripture then this unambiguously makes you responsible for all earthly problems, including your own drug and alcohol use. And, if you don't believe in God and Scripture, you are still totally responsible, because there is no one else to be responsible for your own drug and/or alcohol use.
From a secular source, Abraham Lincoln proffered, "You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves." As a corollary: "You cannot help men permanently by God doing for them what they could and should do for themselves."
Forming the Personal Responsibility Solution - 2008
This answer from a theologian, as well as our eventual understanding as God's role (or lack thereof) in curing alcoholism, was the basis for moving away from the God solution and moving toward a personal responsibility solution. However, nowhere in the 11th Edition does it promote secularism over theisms. Nevertheless, the 11th Edition does soundly reject Alcoholics Anonymous' God solution for the cessation of drug and/or alcohol use. Consider the following quote from the 11th Edition's Preface on page XLIII:
"It is essential to recognize that sobriety is not dependent on a belief in God. Sobriety or moderating use of substances is dependent on your choice to abstain or moderate your drug and alcohol use. The truth is alcohol and drugs have no power. They are inert substances, not living, breathing, supernatural entities. Therefore nothing supernatural is needed to make the choice not to ingest them."
And then again, on pages 47 and 48 from Chapter 4 of the 11th Edition the concept of the God Solution is rejected in its entirety:
"â€¦First, AA's rhetoric is alluring and all consuming. It appeals directly to the substance abuser's lack of maturity. It tells the substance abuser that his (her) substance abuse is not his fault and he has a disease that he is powerless to overcome. He is further indoctrinated into believing that he must have AA's help, for without AA he will die from the disease or go insane. In the final stages of his AA indoctrination, he accepts AA's concept of God; that He (AA's God) is at the member's beck and call.
A thorough study of the "AA Bible" (a.k.a. the book Alcoholics Anonymous) reveals an external Fundamentalist Christian-like Deity that only helps those who seek His help. This AA concept of an external God is like the childlike concept of Santa Claus. If you are "good" and you ask for His gifts, you will receive. However, if you are "bad" or you don't ask for gifts, then you get nothing or perhaps worse yet, you get something you don't want: a lump of coal.
This undeveloped view of the Divine fits perfectly with the immature world of the substance abuser. I will mend my ways, be "good," not "sin," or not "drink," then I will ask for what I want (need): help not to drink. Once I have done this, what I asked for will just materialize. God will deliver me from drunkenness. Further, once I have asked for what I want or need, I have no personal responsibility for the outcome, either God will grant it to me, or he won't.
This myth is enthralling for AA members. The Fundamentalist Christian concept of an External Deity on High who delivers sobriety on demand is irresistible in the minds of substance abusers. They hang onto the belief that "God will do for them that which they could not do for themselves." This idea is true, but only because the substance abuser wants it to be true.
This theory of an external God who will deliver sobriety on demand is truly sad as the majority of people demanding that God provide sobriety through the AA paradigm never do get sober. As time rolls on the individual who is making their demands continues to relapse. Through the natural course of things they become despondent, as the AA version of God was their last solution and it's not working. "Why," they ask themselves, "will God help them (meaning the one or two "oldtimers" who have a few years of sobriety) and not me?"
Once an individual has reached this point hopelessness becomes a way of life because no one in the AA rooms can answer that question. Usually some nonsensical remark is made like this; "You need to work the program better." Or, "It works if you work it." Once again, these statements reinforce that the individual struggling needs to tap dance better for God to receive his graces or worse yet, that the AA meeting rooms may need to be their center of salvation."
While Chapter 4 of the 11th Edition unambiguously rejects the God solution, Chapter 6 of the 11th Edition may cause the reader some confusion as to the importance of God with respect to stopping excessive use of drugs and/or alcohol. Chapter 6 is entitled: What is a Soul? Although the chapter repeatedly uses the terms "soul" and "conscience" interchangeably, the predominant theme of the chapter is the presence of man's oneness with God. Nevertheless, the chapter is devoid of any and all implications or propositions that God has a role to perform in an individual's decision to cease using drugs and/or alcohol. As to whether God has any responsibility for a person using drugs and/or alcohol or not using drugs and/or alcohol is a matter of personal belief and is not the subject of Chapter 6.
That being said, Chapter 6 is significant with its insights into the difference between the soul (conscience) and the brain. Consider the following:
"Internal to every human being is a conscience or soul. This conscience is an internal barometer of what is right and what is wrong and is a constant reminder to the brain and emotions of what is needed to further the goals of the soul."
Forming and Utilizing CBE: Cognitive Behavioral Education in the Jude Thaddeus Program
Here, the 11th Edition begins to draw a functional, and for lack of a better description, a physical, distinction between the conscience and the brain. This distinction will become the major difference between the 11th Edition and the 12th Edition. The separation between the metaphysical conscience (soul) and the physical brain was the impetus for the Baldwin researchers to write the 12th Edition. Another major consideration was to separate drug and/or alcohol use from circumstantial negative factors such as past traumas, a bad marriage, anxiety, mental illness, depression, job related pressures etc., or genetic and biological factors. Then, too, was the recognition that guests attending the JTP are, as are all humans, unique individuals, who in the autonomy of their own minds, would decide, by themselves and for themselves, all future behaviors. The recognition of this infinite freedom of the mind set the course for the development of the Freedom Model and the discovery of Cognitive Behavioral Education.
With these new understandings, in 2008, the Baldwin researchers came to the realization that their research and subsequent publications dealt with defining the drug and/or alcohol use problem and offering a positive method for the cessation of drug and/or alcohol use. Yet up to and including the 11th Edition, the Baldwin researchers had directed all their research answering the "what and how" of drug and/or alcohol use and the attendant solution; what was lacking was the understanding of "why."
NOTE: For an in-depth understanding of the 11th, 12th and 13th Editions, please visit website for 11th edition, website for 12th edition and website for 13th edition, respectively, where the complete text of each may be studied. The purpose of providing these unabridged presentations for each edition is to offer interested parties the opportunity to follow the migration from the original research to what was thought to be the most effective solution in the 13th Edition. Thought to be or not, it wasn't the final answer. At this time the 14th Edition is being written. The reason for the 14th Edition will be discussed later in this report.] (2,2,2016)
The "what and how" seemed so complicated back in 1989, but in January 2015, the "what and how" of drug and/or alcohol use is easily understood. In 1989, the "what" was an incurable lifetime disease; a spiritual disease; beyond human power; a psychological infirmity; helplessness and hopelessness. Initially, for the Baldwin researchers, what drug and/or alcohol use "was not" was far more important than what it "was." By 2008, Baldwin researchers, and hundreds of other researchers, had proven conclusively that drug and/or alcohol use was none of the previously mentioned conditions; it was merely a chosen habit.
Still, today the public at large accepts the notion that drug and/or alcohol use is a disease, and accepts the notion that once addicted it is beyond the control of the individual, that God's intercession is the only hope of recovery, and that psychological counseling is required to become drug and alcohol free. So why is the idea, that drug and/or alcohol use is a habitual behavior rejected by medical professionals, governments, courts and the national culture? Actually, culturally accepted myths, that hamper the acceptance of factual information are more common than one might imagine. Consider the practice of bloodletting, which lasted for 1800+ years:
"Based on the dogma that disease is caused by humors in the blood that need to be removed, bloodletting as a therapeutic approach was used in the days of Galen (130 -200 AD) up to the early twentieth century. Even Harvey in the 1600s whose scientific studies added much knowledge about the human circulatory system believed that bloodletting was good for diseases caused by plethora, a useless abundance of blood. Whether blood was removed by puncturing blood vessels with a lancet or more slowly with the use of leeches, bloodletting was recommended for treating inflammation, fevers, many different disease states and even hemorrhage (why removing blood helps when you have already lost some escapes the mind of modern man). There were patients who survived this therapy, and who recovered because the natural history of their problem was one of spontaneous recovery. Some actually benefited from bloodletting, for instance, those who had excessive body fluid from congestive heart failure might have had some temporary relief of symptoms. As a scientific approach to medicine began to take hold, a French physician, Louis, in the 1800s did a statistical analysis of the efficacy of bloodletting and showed that bloodletting did not alter the course of pneumonia. Physicians of that era ignored Louis's studies, however, so convinced were they of the prevailing theory of disease causation. It was not until medical science had provided better explanations for disease mechanisms that bloodletting finally fell into disrepute. Medical historians note that bloodletting continued in popularity because doctors, patients and family were all convinced that something important, even heroic, was being done; in addition, the patient, once bled and brought to a state of fainting would appear to be more restful. - See more at: https://www.baldwinresearch.com/baldwinproject1991-1.cfm#sthash.QUulhKej.dpuf
Myths and outright mistakes existed throughout the history of medicine and disease and are still commonplace today. Certainly erroneous cause(s) and erroneous cure(s) qualify as some of these "outright mistakes." And, like the misguided bloodletting of old, contemporary treatment for alcohol and/or drug use continues, not because these contemporary treatments work, but rather because doctors, patients, government and family are all convinced that something important, even heroic, is being done. In any case, it is not surprising that contemporary drug and alcohol treatment techniques do not work when considering that the treatments are in response to a faulty causation and diagnosis.