I have, in past posts, compared Type 1 diabetes to addiction. Think about it for a minute. We have to inject several times a day to stay alive or be hooked to a pump. Without this continual “fix” we will get sick and eventually die. Our physical self (The Body) needs insulin. The Body is not able to administer the insulin itself and we must do it. Unlike some other addictions there does not appear to be an “urge” or “burning desire” for insulin. But if you step back a bit and look at the situation with clarity you can feel this urge deep within. As I was spending time with a friend the other day and talking to him about his past experience with addiction we came to realize that the drugs and alcohol were symptoms of a deeper and much more profound cause. This is where the analogy gets a bit tricky. A drug addict’s initial primary assignment is to stop taking the drug. The use of substances has become a problem. It has led to consequences that are not desirable. And there remains an urge to use the substance. It is my opinion that the use of drugs and alcohol to the point of abuse and addiction is simply an escape from the root cause. This root cause is different in each addict but similar themes persist. In the Type 1 diabetic it is not our initial assignment to stop “using” insulin. Injectable insulin was invented about 85 years ago. Prior to that a person acquiring the disease would die in a matter of weeks. Insulin is our life line. The drug addict seeks therapy and restraint, the diabetic seeks medical invention and best practices in insulin delivery, diet and exercise. In both cases, the cause for the ailment for the drug addict is not the use of substances and the cause for the disease of diabetes is not the absence of insulin. These are both symptoms.
The cause of any dis-ease is never on a physical level. Imagine a tree. It has leaves, buds, branches, a trunk and below the ground it has a main thick root and then other roots stemming out form it and even finer little roots leading to the original seed level. The root system and seed are underground, not seen unless one digs down. Our physical bodies are like the trunk, branches, leaves and fruit. It is the last manifestation of the tree. Below ground where one cannot see is the emotional, unconscious and yes, spiritual components. The seed is the spiritual and the fine roots are the subtle unconscious beliefs and emotional connections. The stronger roots connect the spiritual and unconscious to the conscious. To discover the cause in the physical it is necessary to explore underground. To dig deep and as one approaches the seed level to dig like an archeologist would for a rare find because if done too roughly you will simply yank things up and not be able to connect the dots.
The root cause of my friend’s drug addiction is probably very similar to million’s of other people’s addictions or dis-eases. It just so happens that he chose drugs and alcohol to be the manifestation. Other’s may choose food, exercise, sex, nicotine, anger, depression or a host of other pathways to express it.
I believe that there is a root cause to Type 1 diabetes. It may be different for different people. As we dig and explore for the seed level we must take care of ourselves. But don’t accept the symptoms as the cause. The cause is at the spiritual level. It always is. “We are not human beings having a series of spiritual experiences. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.” Wayne Dwyer. Having Type 1 diabetes is a lesson in balance. Follow the concept of balance down from the leaves, branches, trunk, below to the root and seed level. What other areas of your life are out of balance? In yoga we are taught that one of the objectives is to create union and balance between the body, mind and spirit. Perhaps addressing the challenges with living with Type 1 diabetes can be a kind of yoga pose. First create alignment, then explore the edges and ultimately find your liberation.