“Ruled by the Spirit”

The Cayce readings make a simple and direct entreaty to the one faced with the challenge of alcoholism: Choose whether you will serve the Spirit of God or the Spirits Frumenti. "The body does not desire nor hope to be ruled by someone else, neither does it wish the spirit of corn or wine to rule, but rather that indicated in Exodus 19:5 - 'If ye will be my people, I will be your God.' " (3392-1)

Like all embodied humans, the alcohol-dependent individual is meeting self. In his or her case, the confrontation is in the form of the habits, desires, and attempts for gratification through drink. The readings suggest that these appetites, though always having physical components, have been built up in previous lifetimes and carried into the present experience - not merely as a punishment, but rather as a learning opportunity, as a chance to understand self, and as a means for re-direction to the Divinity within.

Choices are ever offered. The desire and the will must be awakened to turn toward light and life and service as ". . . there is brought the awareness of the fruits of the spirit being made manifest in the material way and manner." (1969-2)

The Curse and the Challenge

Alcoholism seems to be a perennial plague - a common feature of all ages and times, all races and nations with the exception of groups and religions in which abstinence is mandated. Today, it is estimated that from two to five per cent of Americans cannot control their consumption of alcoholic beverages.

Modern medicine recognizes four factors as contributing to dependence on alcohol: stress, personality, environment, and the addictive nature of the substance. It is generally believed that anyone, regardless of genetics, environment, or personality, can become addicted to alcohol if he or she drinks heavily for a prolonged period of time.

Treatment involves detoxification for acute symptoms and long-term therapy to deal with the basic problem. The latter regimen is largely focused on psychological measures, such as group sessions, and support through Alcoholics Anonymous. Physical interventions for the chronic alcoholic center on treatment of specific associated illnesses, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, nutritional deficiencies, and heart, blood, and liver diseases, when they are diagnosed. Abstinence, a "well-rounded" diet, and a daily multi-vitamin are recommended. In some instances, the drug Antabuse® (disulfram), an alcohol antagonist, is prescribed to deter the patient from returning to the bottle.

The complexity of the alcohol problem is immense. It is not just a physical nor a mental nor a spiritual one. It is all of these. It is not just a personal dilemma, but is usually a family, social and community one. Further, it can produce financial as well as medical crises. Finally, it is not just a temporal trouble, but it is a trauma of the soul - one which follows the self from lifetime to lifetime until it is overcome.

Standard medicine does not yet view alcoholism from the karmic perspective. But, it does otherwise make relatively holistic approaches to the problem by involving all manner of medical and paramedical personnel in therapeutic efforts.

However, these measures still seem to barely "scratch the surface" when compared to the broad and incisive approach outlined in the Cayce readings. The readings lay down physical, psychological, and pathological as well as karmic bases of the illness. They also point to specific physical remedies which may be of benefit for many alcohol-dependent individuals. The readings further direct attention to environment, family support, and prayer.

Yet, Cayce lays the burden of the work and change in the hands of the one whose desires and appetites have led him/her from the Spirit of God to the demon of rum or wine or beer. "And if there is the DESIRE on the part of the entity, the body, to rid self of the disturbances, this may be done - provided the trust, the hope is put in the proper place; and then worked at." (1427-1)

A Case of Desire

"DESIRE - DESIRE - DESIRE" is the common refrain in the readings as Cayce seeks to point the alcoholic in the direction of life and help. The "satisfying or gratifying of appetites" (5075-1) capture the minds and bodies of millions now as they did in Cayce's day and in centuries before. Yet, these will ever remain unfulfilled. Only in Him - God, the Divine - will desire meet satiety. "Sober in flesh, but drunk with the Spirit" may be a reasonable metaphoric goal not only for the alcoholic but for all of us who momentarily lose ourselves in pursuit of one engulfing desire our another.

"As may be well gained by many, habit and desires are akin. Habit, however, is a physical reaction to the senses of the body, while desire is both mental, physical AND spiritual, and when INORDINATE desire has been created by the use of those forces that make for the activities in all the sensory forces of the body, it becomes as the possession of those forces from without and from within that create, without the cleansing influence of the spiritual entering in from without, that which is hard to cope with." (486-1)

Still, we must remember that the body is a law unto itself and that which is sown in the body must be met there as well. The craving - the INORDINATE DESIRE - is mental, but not just mental.

"In most respects we find the body-physical is very good, near to normal from outward appearance and from activities within; yet there ARE evidences of a weakness in the PHYSICAL body through the desire for GRATIFYING of appetite that has blocked the will of the mental forces by gratifying of a physical desire for the emotions of a mental and physical experience; thus becoming a destructive influence to the physical and the mental body. . . .Thus the craving, the gnawing in the gastric forces of the digestive system - or the liver and heart activity in its ganglia - makes for the INORDINATE DESIRE!" (1427-1)

Inordinate desire must give way to ordinary, but keen, desire for healing and the daily determination to make the body the temple it was meant to be. That body with its "built-in" desires and cravings must be remodeled simultaneously from the outside in and the inside out. "This may not be accomplished until there is removed PHYSICALLY those pressures that cause the inability of the system, between the nervous forces of the body, to PREVENT the possession of the appetites seeking desire by influences without as well as gratification within." (1439-1)


The readings are clear that the problem of alcoholism is karmic, arising out of desires ungratified and appetites unsatisfied in previous incarnations. Sowing and reaping from moment to moment and lifetime to lifetime, we all meet ourselves coming and going. Yet, a way out is ever prepared as we move from desires of the flesh to the will of the Spirit in our lives. "For what one sows that must one reap. This is unchangeable law. Know that this law may be turned into law of grace and mercy by the individual, through living and acting in their lives in relationships to others." (5233-1)

Karmic forces, funneling into physical life by way of the soul and the energy centers, draw specific challenges into the human body. In the case of the alcoholic, psychic forces usually focus through the solar plexus center and bring pressure to bear where the cerebro

spinal and sympathetic nervous systems contact each other in the region of the lower dorsal vertebrae (middle back). "The effect upon the imaginative system goes to the brain reflexes themselves, and at such periods of repression the body is not the normal self." (3432-1)

Clearly, the whole being is involved in the case of an alcohol-dependent man or woman. Alcoholism is so complex and so hard to treat because of the broad multi-dimensional factors which bring it into being.

"This is a PHYSICAL and not just a MENTAL condition, see?"
(881-1) From the physical angle, the alcoholic undoubtedly has significant lesions, impingements, or subluxations (generally in the lower dorsal region) creating pressures upon internal organs and helping to generate the INORDINATE DESIRE which is so common to the condition. These lesions may arise from physical trauma, glandular dysfunction, other internal disease and disorder, and/or the after-effects of indulgence.

From the mental side, angers and resentments can not only be a contributing factor in alcoholism but also a source of real disease. "For anger can destroy the brain as well as any disease. For it is itself a disease of the mind." (3510-1)

Finally, environment is a large influence in promoting and perpetuating the traits of the alcoholic personality. That environment includes ready access to liquor, regular contact with other drinkers, enabling friends and relatives, and an atmosphere conducive to inebriation. ". . . with the associations, the environ that offers the opportunity, these become impelling influences as of a possession . . ." (2161-1)



First things first: Changes can come through physical remedies and external applications, but such will be for naught if the person does not study to know self and his or her relationships to God - the Creative Forces. ". . . there must FIRST be the PURPOSING IN the mental forces of the body sufficient to give the body THROUGH the applications necessary the opportunity to bring about this change which will enable the body to resist and to overcome those inclinations, those tendencies, those appetites." (1753-1)

In effect, there must be an awakening - a turning toward God - a discovery that the individual is of and a part of Divinity. Without this, man remains lost. With this, all things are possible. Alcoholics Anonymous suggests that the alcoholic's new beginning requires surrendering to a Higher Power for direction in his/her life. And Cayce says, "The startling thing to every soul is to awaken to the realization that it is indeed a child of God!" This is the new birth and breath for all - alcoholic and otherwise. Toward achieving this end, the readings often recommend particular Biblical passages as the source of inspiration; those generally being Genesis 1:1-6, Exodus 19:5, Deuteronomy 30, John 14 to 17, and the Romans 12.

The awakening and the turning toward an open-handed Creator necessitates that a clear DESIRE be found or developed within self. "As has been indicated, as has been given oft, this may only come from within. And the DESIRE for help, the DESIRE for aid must be within self." (845-4)

The alcohol-dependent person needs to give up condemning self as well as others and seek to build - to be constructive - to be a creative, beneficial force in his/her environment. "Don't condemn self more than you would be condemned by thy Maker. Don't pass over frailties of others because of strength in self, but see thyself as thy abilities and the urges, and know that in Creative Energies, in God, in Christ as God, ye may find strength for the application of thy ideals." (5075-1)

The hoped-for goal and outcome of all of Cayce's advice for the alcoholic may simply stand as ". . . be good for something for OTHERS rather than [one's] own appetites. These must be created first." (845-4)


The chief features of the physical component to treatment of alcoholism include manipulative therapy, alcohol antagonists, the vibration of gold, diet and supportive environment.

1) Osteopathic adjustments are necessary to remove physical pressures which produce or promote desires, cravings, and indulgences. These pressures are generally, but not always, located in the region of the 7th to the 11th dorsal vertebrae. Relaxing and coordinating treatments are indicated.

2) An alcohol antagonist such as disulfram or one suggested by the readings may be useful ". . . to produce NAUSEA to an extent that the body, when over STIMULATING self, will refrain from same."

Eucalyptol 1 minim
Rectified Oil of Turp 1/2 minim
Benzosol 1 minim
Codeine 1/60 grain (4386-1)

3) The "Gold Cure" may be helpful both to repel the alcoholic from drink as well as build up the glandular and nervous systems. ". . . we would begin taking a combination of the Chloride of Gold Solution and Bicarbonate of Soda Solution . . . , for the correcting of the impulses and the supplying of energies and elements as may be best assimilated by the system from such." (2055-1)

4) Gold may be added vibratorially to the body via the Wet Cell Appliance with gold chloride in place of or in addition to Cayce's standard Gold Cure. "Alcohol won't work with gold! This is the gold treatment, but it builds the resistance!" (606-1)

5) The diets recommended for alcoholics seeking the cure are quite variable. Cayce, however, gives what may be considered as standard the suggestion that ". . . there would be little of the foods that produce alcohol in the system. These would be, then, the very natures that contain little of the sugars, little of those that ferment easily . . ." (1764-1)

6) An environment which is conducive to sobriety, self-study, constructive activity, and spiritual development is the final physical key to recovery. "Let the body keep the surroundings such that will be in keeping with those things that are DETERMINED within self . . ." (1106-1)


Family and relatives, friends and neighbors play a VERY important role in supporting the alcoholic in finding his/her way home. Condemnation has no part in bringing the alcoholic to task. Rather, compassion and forbearance must be out front in the lives of those who would be of aid. "DO NOT - those, then, about the entity - CONDEMN; lest a worse fate befall thee!" (1427-1)

The generally limited view of onlookers must be transformed into the BIG PICTURE where the illness, pain, and conflict of the alcoholic are concerned. With a wide-angled lens, the seeming urgency of the situation to "do something" may be turned into patience and quiet expectation.

Q. Is he making any progress?
A. As man seeth, no. As looked on from the experience
from the soul forces, yes. (845-4)

Prayer may be the greatest "deed" which outsiders can contribute: "Why worry when you can pray?" Prayer and meditation by those "near and dear to the body" on behalf of the recovering alcoholic are encouraged again and again as a powerful form of intercession. Done by a group or groups, ". . . the greater may be that directed influence towards the activity of any soul, any mental being. . ." such that ". . . there may be brought an awakening within - in correcting these conditions - and an awareness that there is a worth while experience for self in the activities of the entity's manifestation of life. . ." (496-1)

Promise of Healing

The call goes out not only to family and friends, but also to the helping professionals to look for the light and spirit hidden within the troubled soul. Let light call to light, heart to heart, and spirit to spirit. "We would . . . attempt to make better cooperation between the body and those making administrations. Not by making promises of this or that but rather appealing to the body through the better self, the innate, the spiritual, the soul self." (3510-1)

The affected individual must eventually recognize that help and healing are not far distant, but near at hand, for ". . . Lo, the spirit lies within thine own heart; thine own body, thine own mind.... Know that the answer is deep in self and no one else can know it for you." (3506-1)

The way to God and the rule of the Spirit stand open even - and maybe especially to the man or woman who has wallowed in the spirit of corn or of wine or of barley. "Do that, then; relying upon those things that have been pointed out; that the basis of all spiritual awakening, the promises of the better and closer association with the divine are within self." (1106-2)


Robert McNary, MD
Nevada City, CA
February 1995

Reprinted with permission of A.R.E. and E.C.F.
This material was written for A.R.E. and appears in its circulating files collection.
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