Johns, Andrew Gary - The release from pain that is mania
Type of Spiritual Experience
There is no healing. Instead acute periods of mania act like an anaesthetic, the pain is then excruciating during depression
A description of the experience
Extracted from Wikipedia
Johns announced his retirement from rugby league on 10 April 2007 at the age of 32. This followed a long run of injuries, the last of which was a bulging disc in his neck which forced his retirement due to the risk of serious spinal injury from further heavy contact.
Johns' back injury at the tail-end of 2002 was the first of what seemed like a plague of injuries over the next few seasons: he had a serious neck injury that threatened his career in 2003, sustained an ACL knee injury which kept him out of most of the 2004 season, and broke his jaw in early 2005.
Despite this, as Game 2 of the 2005 State of Origin series approached, the Blues were down 0–1 and Johns was selected to replace Brett Kimmorley in the New South Wales squad.
The second game in the series was his first match since returning from a series of injuries that sidelined him for a number of weeks. Johns did not have to struggle to regain his form, receiving Man-of-the-Match honours in the Blues' 32–22 win over Queensland.
He was again chosen as the first-choice halfback for Game 3 and performed well, sealing the series for the Blues with a strong 32–10 win, their last series win for a very long time.
Andrew Johns broke one of the longest-standing records in Round 2 of the 2006 season as he amassed 30 points against the Canberra Raiders and in doing so claimed the points-scoring record for a player at a single club, surpassing Mick Cronin's 1,971 points for Parramatta.
Back in the NRL, playing for Newcastle during a Round 18 match against the Parramatta Eels, Johns' name entered the NRL record books for the second time in the year. A Johns conversion of a Newcastle try made Johns the highest points scorer in the 98-year history of first-grade rugby league in Australia, eclipsing Jason Taylor's previous record of 2,107 points. He rather coincidentally scored the record-breaking conversion in a 46–12 loss to the Eels, who were coached at the time by Jason Taylor.
Things did not start well for Johns in the 2007 season as he lasted only four minutes into Round 1. As Canterbury Bulldogs forward Sonny Bill Williams went to perform one of his trade-mark hits on Johns, the tackle strayed high leaving Johns lying concussed. Williams pleaded guilty at the judiciary to a reckless high tackle, and received a two-week suspension for the hit. Johns missed the following match but returned in Round 3 against the Canberra Raiders—which would be his last career match in the NRL. On the Thursday after the Canberra match, a tackle with Newcastle teammate Adam Woolnough in a training session resulted in his referral to a specialist to examine a neck injury. It was revealed that Johns had a bulging disc in his neck. It was confirmed that this had been present for some time and was not related to the training incident.
All medical advice was that Johns should retire from professional football, since any further neck injury could prove life-threatening and on 10 April 2007, Johns announced his retirement from rugby league.
On October 2008 Johns completed a walk from Newcastle to Sydney to raise funds for the Black Dog Institute.