What Are Your Gateway Drugs?
Sometimes, spiritual dryness comes as result of us taking too much of the wordly and not enough of the spiritual. Some of these worldy habits may act as gateway drugs that lead to sin.
The assertion that certain vices such as smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol can serve as gateway drugs to harder drugs, has always been controversial . However, it does seem to be the case that most drug addicts smoked or drank before become addicted to something like crack or cocaine.
Science Daily reported today that when a little bit of nicotine was put in the drinking water of rats for at least 7 days, the rats, showed an increased response to cocaine.
A landmark study in mice identifies a biological mechanism that could help explain how tobacco products could act as gateway drugs, increasing a person’s future likelihood of abusing cocaine and perhaps other drugs as well, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), part of the National Institutes of Health. The study is the first to show that nicotine might prime the brain to enhance the behavioral effects of cocaine. Read more.
That study is probably still not enough to convince those who do not believe that certain habits like the ones listed above serve as an entry into harder drugs.
In the same way, some habits predispose us to various sins and in fact act like gateway drugs.
I happen to know for a fact there are some behaviors that can either lead me to sin or at least lead me away from increased holiness:
- worldly books
- heavy metal Music
- The Internet. Yes, I can’t stress this enough. Sometimes I just have to take a break.
So if I spend all day listening to a certain type of music that may be okay, but not spiritually nourishing, I am less likely to pray in the evening. The music serves as a gateway drug to spiritual laziness for me.
How about you? Can you identify any habits or attachments that you have, that serve as gateway drugs to more sinful behavior?