Upon a review of session notes with those addicted to heroin, two (2) phrases continually appear: 1) Heroin is often referred to as the “Devil’s Drug” and using heroin is often referred to as, “Chasing the Dragon.” To me, these recurring phrases indicate that there appears to be an instinctive understanding about the relationship between heroin addiction and demonic spirits. What isn’t clear, and has eluded me is why this understanding exists and also, if there is in fact something specific to heroin addiction that allows a malevolent spirituality to emerge. What’s more, in my own experience, I have been involved with a case in which I sensed something evil within a person who was “detoxing” from heroin. Without any doubt, I believe that the case involved someone who was “possessed” by a malevolent entity. Therefore, based upon my questions and experiences, I have been seeking any reason why there would be a relationship between heroin addiction and demonic possession. Without a doubt, I am convinced that the relationship ship DOES exist and that there is a valid reason why demonic possession is specific to heroin addiction. The two (2) areas of exploration that yielded my finding are: 1) the process of heroin addiction; and, 2) the process of demonic possession. When looked at side-by-side, these two processes reveal the distinguishing characteristic that links heroin addiction with demonic possession.
Heroin addiction involved a physical dependence. That is, when someone is addicted to heroin, there is a severe withdrawal process if that person stops using it. While there are other substances that also create physical dependence (such as alcohol, crystal meth, nicotine) and withdrawal, what distinguishes heroin addiction from other substances is the idea that someone addicted to heroin “gets well” when using heroin. Someone addicted to alcohol, for example, does not “get well” by drinking; rather, when someone addicted to alcohol drinks, he/she becomes increasingly drunk until his/her body simply breaks down. However, when a heroin user “picks up,” he/she “fixes” and somewhat normalizes; this normalization is due to a developed tolerance to the drug that no longer yields any effects, other than to provide the amount needed to alleviate the withdrawal symptoms. This phenomena, to me, creates an “inverted psychology” in which the only way to cure someone who’s withdrawing is to use heroin. To a heroin addict, the worst possible condition he/she can face is withdrawing from heroin and will go to any length to acquire the drug. The psychology of a heroin addict, then, involves a mentality in which using heroin creates an illusion of health dressed in “feeling normal.” Once a heroin addict fixes, he/she appears to be thinking normally, as the amount that would be necessary to get high would be both expensive and highly dangerous to ingest through any means.
The process of demonic possession, according to Malachi Martin (noted exorcist) in his book Hostage to the Devil, involves three (3) key steps: 1) The demon accesses the person through some entry point involving the person’s senses. This entry usually is made through some aspect of excellence or importance within the person and involves consciously acting in violation of his/her core beliefs; 2) There is then a series of erroneous judgments that lead a person to “invert” something that was once “good” into something that he/she perceives as good, but is actually quite detrimental. For example, an intellectual person may use his intellect to rationalize why various violations of conscience are good, rather than bad, and that separate him from pursuits that may have been engaging within a community or a musician may become isolated in her pursuit of her talent to the point of removing herself from the world and then from her own sense of personal health. Once this isolation occurs, then, 3) the person then voluntarily yields to an internal presence that he/she KNOWS is outside of his/her native consciousness to the point of total possession. The process of demonic possession, then, fundamentally inverts something good into something evil, just as heroin addiction creates an inverted psychology that seeks something harmful as though it were good.
It is within the concept of inversion where the link between heroin addiction and demonic possession is found. I have often discussed the concept of singularity of focus within the process of addiction, yet never realized that heroin addiction not only leads to a single point of focus, but also “flips” bad into good. If someone must consciously allow a demonic presence and a person is “normal” when using heroin, then that person is ripe for allowing the entry. Also, since heroin becomes the most important thing, several erroneous judgments are made in pursuit of the drug. Once a person has lost everything in his/her world to heroin addiction, he/she is ready to completely yield to any entity that will provide heroin, even if that entity is a demonic presence.
To be clear, I am neither saying that all heroin addicts are possessed, nor am I saying that heroin addiction is evil. I am saying, however, that heroin addiction creates the perfect storm necessary for a demonic possession to occur and those who call heroin the “Devil’s Drug” do so because they know that there is evil present within the world of the heroin addict.