Short circuiting the system. The human body has a reward system. It's rigged to make me do things that are good for me. If I do something good for my health and well being, like eat good food but not too much, I'm rewarded with feeling good. Drugs short circuit the system, tricking my body into releasing the feelgood chemicals. My body can't guide me to what's right for me. I'm rudderless, cast adrift. Using recreational drugs is self betrayal, self sabotage.
Timeline. Booze and pot were the two recreational drugs Kenya introduced me to, and they became my theme song. They were the tune of my whole life for more than 50 years. In Kenya I drank until I discovered pot, then mostly stopped drinking until 1968, when I swapped drugs with Sam and Gail. In college I stopped smoking pot when I found I couldn't maintain a train of thought. I switched to alcohol and stayed with it exclusively from 1970 to 2016, when Leela made me quit drinking. In 2018 she made me take up pot again, pushing my consumption until it woke me up and made me quit recreational drugs for good in late 2019. Leela drove me into both booze and pot and accelerated that process as best should could given limited influence. Once I surrendered to her in 2016 she drastically accelerated first booze then pot, in each case forcing me to a crisis that made me give up booze then recreational drugs of all kinds. That was my left hand path through drug use.
Harm. Booze causes physical harm. Thanks to Leela's acceleration of my drinking that harm was relatively easy to deal with because my body was still strong, not weakened by a few more decades of moderate alcohol use. Pot causes psychological harm. It amplifies mental noise, feeding the inherent madness everyone already has whether they know it or not.
The psychological harm caused by pot was much rougher, much harder to deal with. Pot shut down my natural ability to be clear. To be in direct contact with Leela, wisdom. It replaced the real magic of spontaneous meditation with fake chemical magic. My ability to contact wisdom started coming back in 2006, when wisdom spoke to me. My ability to be in direct contact with wisdom didn't come back until Leela woke me up in 2019. Waking up is an adult version of the natural openness to wisdom kids have. I had a lot of it before pot.
Drugs and Maslow's hierarchy. I've had a hard time comprehending my peculiar relationship with drug use. It doesn't really jibe with anything I've heard or read. What works for me it absolute abstinence. Not even the hint of a recreational drug. Lots of people have seemingly satisfactory lives that include some modest drug use, the occasional beer or glass of wine, just a few tokes to take the edge off, whatever. Not I. I think it's a matter of where one aims one's life. Most people seem content with a life partway up the pyramid: basic needs, security, love, accomplishment. One can have all that with a little drug use. That's never been enough for me. I've always been focused on that top tier. For as long as I can remember.