CORE will remain closed on Sundays permanently, Telephone Counseling available

Written by


Dr. Randell L. Stenson

The Deep-Rooted History and Impact of Opium Addiction



Explore opium's ancient ties to culture & addiction.

The intricate relationship between humans and the opium plant stretches far back into the annals of history. This bond, although fraught with challenges, offers a fascinating insight into the evolution of addiction and the power of plant-derived substances.

A Glimpse into Ancient Times

The history of opium addiction extends back thousands of years. It's enlightening to note how significantly the opium plant has influenced various ancient cultures. Regions like Eastern India, China, and the Far East, abundant with naturally growing poppy fields, have been intertwined with this plant for millennia. Intriguingly, the opium plant predates human existence, suggesting its integral role in the environment and its importance in the evolutionary journey.

Interplay with Animal Instincts

The opium plant's effects are not restricted solely to humans. Delving deeper into the brain, one discovers that opium's site of action lies within the instinctive portion - a segment we share with many animals. Over 800 animal species might succumb to opiate addiction if exposed. However, their exposure remains seasonal due to their inability to store and preserve the plant. Their excessive consumption when the plant is available hints at a universal allure of the opium plant.

From Ancient Plants to Modern Medicine

The journey of plant evolution on our planet intertwines closely with the development of animal life, forming a connection that manifests in various ways. One such connection is the opium plant's link to the human pleasure center, making it a tantalizing substance many wish to experiment with due to the euphoria it can induce.

Furthermore, the opium plant is but one example of nature's pharmacy. Many effective medicines prescribed for an array of human conditions trace their origins back to ancient plants. This deep-rooted relationship underlines the significance of plants in the evolution and survival of various species, including humans.

In Conclusion

The opium plant's longstanding history and its profound impact on both humans and animals emphasize the intricate and sometimes perilous relationship between species and their environment. While the pleasure centers of the brain draw many to the allure of opiates, understanding this connection can offer insights into addiction's nature and the potential paths to address it.