--> Skip to main content

Stop Getting High The Wrong Way

Everyone wants to get high, to get lost in the frenzy of the fuzzy world, away from disturbing ruminations about the day-today struggles of existence. It is an attempt to get beyond suffering by numbing one’s perception of it.

Some want to get high because they think that by doing so, they can have an accentuated experience of their senses. What they hear, touch, see, smell, or taste leads to a thousand-fold of the experience they would have without getting high.

All this happens when the person is freed from the pains and the wants of the body. It is as if the person is taken to a completely another world and from there is able to confront one’s inner feelings and repressed emotions.

Sculpture of Vishnu in Badami cave 3

There are many ways that people get high. The most common way is to consume some substance that produces an altered state of consciousness or gives a ‘kick’ to one’s body and mind like consuming alcohol, smoking etc.

However, some do not resort to such means and get the feeling of high just by a rush of adrenaline in their bodies. They accomplish this by engaging in adventure sports like rafting, bungee jumping, and the like, or even by playing some computer games, silly as it may sound!

While in their ‘high’, many people can do what they would not have even thought of doing while their normal selves. By getting high, many people are also able to fulfill their long-wanted desires.

Many have associated getting high with the phenomenon of creativity. There is little or no evidence to suggest that getting high leads to better creativity or imagination.

Getting high is actually an attempt to get rid of the problems of one’s life, for a limited time, only to return to the realities of the world, with a weakened body and mind.
All attempts at getting high are in fact, attempts to deliberately waste time. Instead of trying to get high by dependence on substances, one can get high or the sense of being high by doing many other things. For instance, one can help someone in distress, if not by anything else, by simply listening to that person.

One could help someone by providing food, clothing, or shelter, or even by sharing one’s knowledge with someone in ways that would increase the quality of life of the other person.

Probably the best method of getting high or getting a sense of high is by having an achievable ideal that is not too ordinary and yet not too high. By devoting oneself to the achievement of such an ideal, one’s actions would be automatically determined by whether it would enable one to get close to the ideal or not. And that would ensure that the ‘high’ is continued for long!

Source - excerpts from an article that appeared in Prabuddha Bharata January 2019 page 258 - 259 - under the Young Eyes section