By Heidi Fraser Hageman April 28, 2016
Climbing the Holy Mountain of Recovery is an autoethnographic revelation of the subcultural milieu of junkies contained within, in part created by, and suppressed by American mainstream society, written by Adrian Auler (EWP MA ‘09, current PhDc).
This work uses the first two books of Dante Alighieri’s The Divine Comedy as a mythic container. Inferno structures the author’s story of descent into the hell of addiction; Purgatorio represents his struggle of “recovery” into the light. Dante’s Mountain of Purgatory is transformed into the Mountain of Recovery. It’s shamanic representation of the World Mountain, one form of the World Axis, is discussed; and the “holy” aspect is explained as a need to attain or regain the sacred dimension in order for recovery to be holistic. No one religious orientation is promoted; recovery is an integral effort specific to the individual. The author also introduces several representations of the divine feminine as the agency that preserved him to bring this work forth.
Further, the work is an unabashed promotion for the use of ibogaine, a sacred entheogenic shamanic medicine from West Equatorial Africa, as a powerful interrupter of the rigid addictive routine which traps addicts and which is also an excellent detoxifying agent. Adrian hosted a book reading and discussion on campus on April 28, 2016.