A spiritual awakening is what is said to happen after working a program of recovery. We define a spiritual awakening as a moment of intense clairty, shift of thought, “God moment”, or any moment in which an intense flooding of emotion comes followed by a change in self.
Former alcoholics and addicts accredit their spiritual awakenings to a course of action that is designed to create a change in them. Perspective can show you spiritual awakenings at various points of your recovery, some spiritual awakenings are hard to ignore while others require a mindset keen to finding them.
Here are 20 spiritual awakenings, as told by former addicts and alcoholics:
1. “That afternoon, early evening when I planed to meet up with her and get her high again, I broke….I lost it. I realized through my completely delirious mind that I had become the last person on earth I ever thought I would become and I had no idea how I got there. This was the moment of my spiritual awakening…I called a friend and told him I was done….This was it. It still felt as though it was going to be impossible, but there is something about complete surrender. Just praying to God to find the right path for me…I thought how could something so amazing feel so horrible on the other end. Its insane. I wanted to embrace the pain as much as I wanted it to stop. I needed to feel this pain, remember this pain… It was a different state of mind. My spiritual awakening occurred.” – source
2. “One night I was kneeling in there, looking up at the cross, and the whole place became gold—and suddenly I felt something coming toward me,” she said. “It was this shimmering experience, and I just ran back to my room and said, ‘I love myself.’ It was the first time I remember talking to myself in the first person. I felt transformed.” – Marsha Linehan, Ph. D., Founder of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy [source]
3. “At the end of my addiction I used to pray, ‘God, let this (time I shoot up) be the one that kills me, because I do not want to live like this no more.’ But I guess He say, ‘No, I got plans for you, I ain’t gonna let you die yet.’ Because I really, really wanted to (die), at the end”; “Back in 2002 I was shot….I died twice on the operating table….I’m wondering, ‘Why did God let me live, (when) I done did so much bad stuff in my life?’ My mother said, ‘He has a plan for you’”; “My body used to hurt so bad that I just wanted to kill myself from the pain, you know, and I knew there had to be some spirituality going on up there, be God or something, because I wouldn’t allow myself to do that. Whatever it was gave me strength not to hurt myself, and it keeps giving me chance after chance, like it’s a plan, maybe something out there had a plan for me…” [source]
4. “I realized for the second time in my recovery…that if I continued to do what I always had done then I would continue to get the same exact results I always got. This time I would work the Steps as if my life depended on it, which of course it did. My next stop was suicide so I decided to be completely self-honest this time. I really looked at myself without filters. It was in that moment of truth that I admitted out loud something I had never shared with anyone in the fellowship before: “I simply do not believe in God.” That was what had held me back for so long. It was the part of the program that I always ignored. When I admitted to myself the actual truth, that no matter how much I tried or pretended to believe in God, I just didn’t, it opened a whole new world for me… Just thinking about that milestone in my recovery still gives me goose bumps. It was only the beginning though. The more I searched for my greater power and the more I relied on that power, the more I started to actually change…I always had a problem with the word “spiritual” because of the word “spirit”, which to me means the nonphysical part of a person manifested as an apparition after their death, or a supernatural being. It was a newcomer in the meeting that cleared that up for me. He said to me, “Have you ever heard of ‘team spirit?’ When the team wins there’s camaraderie and support but when the team loses there is encouragement, compassion, and hope. My definition of ‘spirit’ is the part of me that is the seat of emotion and character, my true self.” He could have slapped me with a tuna fish at that moment and I would have been less shocked than I was when he said those words. That completely made sense!
I started to focus on what my true self was (Step Six) and what I needed to do to become the man I wanted to be (Step Seven). That is what I mean when I said I’ve had a spiritual awakening. I look at the events in my life with less of a filter now. I am no longer the same person I was at nine years sober wanting to die. I’m going on fifteen years now and I’ve been given a completely new life. The promises not only have come true for me, they continue to come true in completely different and exiting ways.” – Mikey J [source]
5. “…I know I was an addict way before I picked up a drug…For this addict, I was not willing to get clean. I got clean because God stopped me in my tracks…It’s not by luck..I am responsible for my recovery and I am not going to use today no matter what happens…The power of life and death lies in the tongue…I had convinced myself there was no way out of this…I have a voice today…when I become aware of something, theres no more excuses I can make. And then it’s a choice that I make. And I have to sleep with myself every night. And I have to tell you that denial is always on the other side of my pillow…I was still trying to fix a spiritual problem with a physical solution…I came here completely defeated and broken…today I know that I’m a salvageable person and God has a plan for me. He did not make a mistake.” – Dan C. [source]
Addiction recovery does not guarantee a spiritual experience, the only person that can guarantee a spiritual experience is you. With our addiction treatment programs, we address your mental health, physical health and spiritual health. Our spiritual path brings people in recovery from substance use disorder closer to their own personal spirituality. Our guests find solace in the ability to choose their higher power, as they work to build and strengthen those connections to their spirituality. Part of recovery is realizing that alcohol abuse and substance abuse of prescription or illegal drugs, actually pulls you farther away from a spiritual connection. The recovery process includes bringing you back to your true self, and nurturing the connections you have to your mind, body, and spirit.
Long term recovery requires building yourself mentally, physically, and spiritually back up. Many will look for a hard-to-ignore sign of a spiritually induced awakening, but spiritual awakening signs can come and go in any capacity; your perception is key to unlocking a state of mind that receives the gifts that life has to offer. No matter what your drug abuse looked like, despite your drug of choice, you can recover. At Royal Life Centers Detox, we safely remove any substances from your body comfortably, while also beginning intensive therapy to treat your substance abuse. With individual therapy, group therapy, support groups, and more, we offer you a solution of recovery.