What is a Spiritual Awakening in Recovery?

spiritual awakening

When it comes to addiction rehabilitation, the recovery steps are hard to pin down. Though there are several aspects of rehab that happen for everyone, each person’s individual journey is unique.

Rarely is this more true than in what’s known as a spiritual awakening. If you’re not sure, we’re going to go into what exactly a spiritual awakening is defined as during rehabilitation.

We’ll then outline some common characteristics of this form of enlightenment in recovery. 

Finally, we’ll go into just how spiritual a spiritual awakening really needs to be.

After reading this, you should better understand this potential stage in the rehabilitation journey.

What is a Spiritual Awakening in Rehabilitation?

There are several stages of recovery that someone going through rehabilitation may or may not go through.

A spiritual awakening is one of these potential stages. It’s hard to define specifically, as each form of awakening may be different for each individual. 

We’ll go into some of the specific examples of feelings below.

But in general, a spiritual awakening is a realization period for someone suffering from addiction. It’s a stage where they will look outside of themselves, or inside of themselves, and find a newfound perspective or purpose.

It can usually be seen as a form of transformation. It can change the outlook of a sufferer, making them look at their life or addiction differently.

This is why a spiritual awakening can be an essential, positive component in the stages of recovery.

What Are Some Characteristics of a Spiritual Awakening?

As mentioned above, every person’s spiritual awakening will be different, if they even experience it at all. Every individual’s journey through addiction rehabilitation is a deeply personal one.

But if spiritual awakening is experienced, there are some common ways in which it often appears.

Spiritual Awakening as an Acceptance of Change

A core aspect of most spiritual awakenings is an acceptance of potential change in the sufferer. This is a period where you’re able to identify a problem newly, or you’re ready to decide to make changes to the way you’re living.

Think of it as a kind of revelation, opening your eyes after having closed them for so long. It’s very different from a negative response to rehabilitation, like withdrawal.

This change may be in attitude or purpose. In almost all cases, it will be a positive change that can promote greater life changes in the future.

Spiritual Awakening as an Acceptance of Help

Another core component of many awakenings is the ability to accept help and support.

It can often be hard for those suffering from addiction to accept the help provided to them. After a spiritual awakening, a sufferer may develop a new approach to the prospect of assistance.

This is a way in which it can become a turning point in the journey of recovery.

Positive Change in Well-being

A spiritual awakening is also often accompanied by a positive change in outlook or well-being.

It can be a cathartic experience, which then encourages a more positive view on life through addiction recovery—many sufferers who achieve a spiritual awakening will re-contextualize their relationship with addiction in the future.

Are Spiritual Awakenings Always the Same and Do They Always Happen?

No, all spiritual awakenings are not the same. They can be caused by different factors and can create different feelings within the sufferer.

As we stressed above, the journey to recovery is unique to every individual. 

Sometimes, a spiritual awakening may not occur at all. It is also possible to recover from an addiction without ever experiencing a spiritual awakening.

Some addiction sufferers may have a longer process, where this form of a eureka moment doesn’t materialize. Instead, they might slowly change their feelings towards addiction without any grand epiphany.

This is fine; all recovery is personal and has to be treated as a personal journey as a result.

But for those that do, it can be a fundamental stage on their road to recovery overall. 

Is a Spiritual Awakening Always a Religious Experience?

The concept of spirituality can be heavily linked to the recovery process.

But it is wrong to assume that every single spiritual awakening is somehow related to religious belief. Some people don’t believe in any form of religion who have experienced a spiritual awakening in their recovery process.

For these people, the process might be more to do with accepting self rather than of a divine figure. Certain people may find a spiritual awakening in a significant other or a personal feeling.

But equally, some have a spiritual awakening linked to a religious deity. This is another facet of why spiritual awakenings are an experience that’s unique to whoever is experiencing them.

The act will always be filtered through the opinions and beliefs of the individual, at that particular time in their lives.

It is also incorrect to say that a religious awakening is stronger than one without belief. It entirely depends on the person suffering and how they relate to the experience themselves.

Religion is one component that can impact addiction positively or negatively to different degrees. 

It’s the role of an experienced rehabilitation center to treat every awakening on its own merit. This is the only way individuals can be treated properly and encouraged along their journey to recovery.

Where Can I Find Out More About Spiritual Awakenings and Rehabilitation?

You should now know what spiritual awakenings are, and how they often present themselves.

But they are one stage on the road to addiction recovery, which includes many other phases. If you or someone you love requires support for their addiction, please make sure to contact us directly.

Our phone lines are open 24/7, and our experienced team is always on hand to assist those suffering from drug and/or alcohol addiction.