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Addicts Do Need to Get Right with God, but That Doesn't Mean They Need Religion

The tools of religion can help; but, like the tools of science, they can also harm.

A patient at a Brooklyn methadone clinic holds a coin with the Serenity Prayer on it. Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

A patient at a Brooklyn methadone clinic holds a coin with the Serenity Prayer on it. Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

Last Word
Aug. 28 2017
About the author

Jeffrey Bloom is a writer on issues of culture and society.


I’m very grateful to Christopher Caldwell, Paul McHugh, and Tevi Troy for their wise and thoughtful responses to my essay. To Christopher Caldwell I’m especially indebted for “American Carnage,” his essay in First Things about the opioid crisis, which really opened up the subject of the spiritual implications of addiction and prompted me to organize my own thoughts on the topic.

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More about: Addiction, Arts & Culture, Politics & Current Affairs