June 11 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 6 Spiritual Willingness Alcoholics Anonymous Today's AA daily reflection: "obligations and entitlement…" Difficult reality! From day one in recovery something changes in how we respond and see what is happening around us in fellowship. The traditions of our fellowship are all about: unity, service and recovery intertwined and combined to provide strength of purpose. All founded on a desire to stop drinking and live sober one day at a time…
A sense of obligation to others based on free will, love and wisdom learned feels right to me these days. But I don't feel I have entitlement to anything, nobody under obligation to me and I have no entitlement to their love. It can be very confusing learning this new life where love is unconditional and a personal obligation by me to practice these principles in the twelve step program in all I do today…
I don't feel I'm different to many people in my final days of active alcoholism. Completely unable to function, unable to stop harming myself and just waking up long enough to drink and find oblivion again. The world so black and desolate and beyond feeling any pain. No sense of anything let alone an obligation to anything but extinction and stop causing pain to others. Quite different now, always learning how to love, be loved back and useful in the moment of now…
If we feel entitled to something, usually we are angry about our life situation. Hearing very sad experiences where relationships are broken down and denial of access to loved ones because of something we have done? When we are deprived of connection and relationships and we are excluded, entitlement can stop us seeing the truth of our impact on those we want in our lives. Our behaviour and actions so frightening and unwelcome we are excluded because of what we did. And denial hides our part in it in the moment of now… We can be left living in anger and resentment feeling the unfairness in every breath we take… Not so for me these days
For quite a long time I was cut off from family, advice given by the fellowship to cut me off was said more than once. Family kept thinking they could sort it out and of course they could not, because if I could not find a path forward sober, how on earth could anyone else make me? Recovery is an inside job, I needed to take responsibility to get help and learn how, start from scratch, no entitlement but an obligation to me and everyone to live sober day by day by day. And it works just for today…
AA Daily Reflections ~ "FAMILY OBLIGATIONS... a spiritual life which does not include... family obligations may not be so perfect after all. ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 129
I can be doing great in the program–applying it at meetings, at work, and in service activities–and find that things have gone to pieces at home. I expect my loved ones to understand, but they cannot. I expect them to see and value my progress, but they don’t–unless I show them. Do I neglect their needs and desire for my attention and concern? When I’m around them, am I irritable or boring? Are my “amends” a mumbled “Sorry,” or do they take the form of patience and tolerance? Do I preach to them, trying to reform or “fix” them? Have I ever really cleaned house with them? “The spiritual life is not a theory. We have to live it.” (Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 83).
Family obligations... In fellowship we learn and learn over again how to love, be loved and useful. In unity, service and recovery our feelings return and in early days of recovery, often we are overwhelmed and then with time we find balance where our feelings match real life. It takes time to practice these principles in all our affairs...
I love everyone in my family, over the years in recovery, my nearest and dearest have seen me change, and they have changed, most trust me and accept the new me and love me. The exception is where one is still in the problem of addiction, deeply wounded and deeply wounding for everyone, tolerance and love, and cherish always is key…
Learning Is Timeless... As individuals, with: families, friends and community we are making progress. How we progress in life, consciously or without thought, change and choices happen today. In recovery our impact for good is always in our attitude and behaviour moment by moment...
Recovery all about everything... In fellowship, 12 steps offer an open, honest and willing approach to life. We join together in unity, service and recovery. Practicing these principles in all our endeavours, keeping it simple, making time, learning balance, the road narrows, experience deepens...
June 11 2007
Experience Living - DonInLondon ‘Day In The Life’
Experience living, so easy to say and so difficult often when we are imagining the future and remembering our glory days. Were they so glorious? I have great memories of times past, love and fun, peace rarely and often tranquillity for moments here and there.
Rush to Life
So much of the time, in a rush not dealing with feelings as they happen and then wondering why some unknown is bothering us and we cannot quite put our finger on what is troubling.
We do have these times, when memories from the past are plaguing our thoughts, feelings being stirred by recollections. Then more feelings emerging as we move along and forget to stand still long enough to catch a breath and see the world as it really is right now.
And The Next Thing
Yes and then there is the next thing, we have a plan, we have a next step already there for us to do, and before we have had time to make sense of this one day, we are leaping as if driven for fear of something missed at something we cannot see. So easy to have this push me pull you effect all day and every day.
And smell the coffee? How can we, when things are racing along. A calendar so full we don’t know where we are till we look it up or find ourselves where we are supposed to be. And why? Because it looks right and seems right? Or because we have no choice?
In a world where we are driven to fit in, we do develop acceptance of rush and fullness in our living. We expect every day to be a full day. We make them so full we all have indigestion in our feelings and thinking.
We compress as if we are in danger of losing our part in the world. We are hungry for the next right thing before we have done this one thing today. Stopped and taken a breath. Walked a few minutes. Reflected on what is good. Decided what is right, just now, and not tomorrow or another life yet to live.
Past Present & Future
Dickens in a Christmas Carol, times past, times present and future times.. We are caught in the past often and fear the present and what it has in store. We are forever speculating on the future and know it’s important, and still cannot grasp this one spiritual element we need as we need breath, to utilise our capacity of feeling and thinking in this one moment of now. A caution for those of us who may be aware of NLP or just in a vision or dream and not reality.
Much talk of God
Indeed there has been some talk of God today. I quite welcome talk and sharing on a subject I feel ill equipped to debate. Simply I don’t know. I am and have been bewildered, and have concluded my satisfactory progress so far is to a state of confusion. Not bad going for a person like me.
And as suggested in the fellowship today, we are well aware we are not God, and that there is sufficient evidence to form an opinion of powers greater than us.
We do bother about God and higher powers as it is a spiritual thing. This link to the here and now. And we know, well most of us with gumption, that we are in recovery from an insane addiction to something a day at a time, if we are not using self-will and will power to remain on a path to sobriety, a day at a time. Self Will as is said will run riot in an insane way, when we feel in control and God like in our outlook over something that can kill us like addiction. Fellowship and more help us into a recovering position, self-will and ego will end our problems sooner rather than later and often in calamity.
For me I Know my Truth
I know on a daily basis, I get wisdom and guidance in fellowship. My higher power is the collective wisdom of people who live to the “good.” What we decide and how we live is part of something which is much bigger than us and that is society and civilisation.
We live and make progress. We do some things over and over and get stuck back in the mire of self will and controlling behaviour sometimes. And we get a bit scared when we feel powerless. We feel like we are out of control.
So fundamental and so misunderstood. We have control of choices we may make. And sometimes we may control our own world, but it’s just our world. And truthfully we cannot exert power over others without controlling them, and then we end up prisoners too, as we become the gaolers. And the gaolers are as stuck as we the prisoners if we choose to play those games.
Let go and let good conscience. Let the world play as we are, the equal of and not master of this universe we have. Our internal universe plays all manner of tricks on us. And still we forget that we are just as others in this world. Not bigger or smaller.
Was it Einstein?
And his theory of relatives? I have many relatives here and there and am glad we have come to understand how we interact.
I think someone once told me that Einstein believed there is purpose behind everything. And that is absolutely true. That does not however close the debate about God. It satisfies my understanding of Nature and Providence. And yet those words are loaded with divinity. So I need not debate them either.
Man Made God and God Made Man
In my relative world there is little time to get too excited over this particular conundrum. In truth if we see the good and bad, the choices and have conscience to the good we will actualise what we can and live the life we choose. To good or bad, or somewhere in between as all humans do.
Better done a day at a time, with some patience. In us all, we have every good and less good quality, every choice. We are best served taking a moment in the here and now most often to breath and ponder then respond.
We have no right to be right, we may be so, it does not follow it will lead to happiness or those Elysium fields some might wish for.
Progress yes, perfection? As is my personal folly of intellect and emotional happiness, perfection is an unfinished work, a day at a time. Long may I wonder and change my mind as life offers insights and acceptance of this one day, today.
Step 6 "Spiritual Willingness" Reading Video Link:
wrongs. Chapter 6, Into Action, Big Book From: Page 72 Thru: Page 75, the bottom of the page. 12 And 12 Step 5."
June ~ Video Reading Chapter Six Into Action Link:
I do not speak for Alcoholics Anonymous I speak for myself. Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of unique and authentic people who speak for themselves where they will to share experience, strength and hope about recovery on a daily basis. Anonymity affords
sanctuary to find how to live sober and be open, honest and willing to learn life day by day. For me "truth," "love" and "wisdom" offer the best spiritual experience by living reality today. Into the fabric of recovery from alcoholism are woven the Twelve Steps and the
Twelve Traditions, steps to be open, honest and willing to learn, traditions to live unity, service and recovery.
Spiritual principles ~ Forgiveness Acceptance Surrender Faith Open-mindedness Honesty Willingness Moral-inventory Amends Humility Persistence Spiritual-growth Service