Marijuana :

What Does it Mean to Expand Your Area of Consciousness? :

What Does it Mean to Expand Your Area of Consciousness?


In the timeless espionage book Without Cloak or Dagger, by Miles Copeland, he writes about broadening the “areas of consciousness”.


…he {a spy handler} asked {Emily} for some favor which connected with her job and which involved a security violation so small that she didn’t have the heart to refuse. After Emily had done a string of small favors, her conscience had learned to justify them – or in the jargon of espionage specialists, her “area of conscience had been expanded.”


The author goes on to explain how an espionage agent is given small tasks. With each completion of a small task, “the next time it is easier.”


The expanded area of conscience is not just something seen in the espionage world; it is a reality of the addiction world as well. When you get to the point where you use any drug, it gets a lot easier to use harder ones. It’s marijuana today and tomorrow it’s ecstasy. Next thing you know, you’re into acid, crystal meth, and cocaine.


When you cheat on your spouse once without getting caught, it’s a lot easier to do it the next time. A one-night fling turns into an affair.


You decide to steal one day. Next thing you know you’re robbing people at gunpoint.


In the intelligence world, expanding your “area of consciousness” is a tool that a spy uses to exploit an agent. In the addiction world, it is the one wrong step you take that ends up being your last.