Friday, February 27, 2015

Dopamine IS NOT Joy

We cannot follow Christ and love dopamine at the same time. "No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and [dopamine]." Just like money isn't inherently evil but the love of money is a sin, experiencing the effects of neurotransmitters isn't a sin but putting God aside to chase after "dopamine liberating" events puts us outside the "strait and narrow path".

Let's set one thing straight - joy and dopamine are not the same thing.  Many times experiencing joy has the secondary effect of producing dopamine, but it is a mortal chemical and we can produce it without the joy that comes from God.

And don't even get me started at how well our fallen mortal frames are adept at self-deception and altering our perception in order to protect those events or sensations that produce dopamine. (Why else would Jacob admonish so strongly the need to "see things as they really are"?).  The body will try to find whatever neural sensations and experiences will produce the most reward for our mortal hard-wiring and situation, while at the same time avoiding the land-mines of cultural taboo and things that our "conscience" feel are not right (which can be altered by giving into these experiences and making them our automatic focus).

I ran across an article highlighting the interaction between discipleship and this drug that I think shed a lot of light on the interplay and interaction between our spirits and the Natural Man: