October 27 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 10 The Now Inventory Alcoholics Anonymous Today's Daily Reflections: "global sharing: the only thing that matters…" Who would've thought we would be in a world where one alcoholic on one continent can share a message of experience strength and hope with another alcoholic on another continent in the same day? This was never envisaged when the twelve steps and twelve traditions were first suggested and written down. The big book: and all the books of AA are printed and shared through the media. What to do with all the new media?
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Sharing of experience, strength and hope is the fundamental principle to help people with a desire to stop drinking. If a person reads a book, hears something on the radio, which is unlikely, sees something on TV, which is likely, sees something on you tube, sees something on Facebook, sees something on tens of thousands of recovery sites, sees something on personal webpages, on Twitter, on a blog, sees something they can interact with, anything is possible. And what works best? Of course, face-to-face is best? I do feel that face-to-face is best and how this happens is a miracle, because there are more alcoholics still in addiction, than there will ever be alcoholics in recovery. There are not enough of us one-to-one which is why we need fellowship and groups and meetings and everything we can possibly do to help a person get sober. Sharing the message, that there is hope and there is a way and each person hears their story. Somehow if they do hear their story, from another in recovery is all that matters to me…
I mentioned that learning the truth of my current situation, my emotional state and my ability to cope with the present moment is where sober happens and I can keep sober and cope most of the time. When I am under pressure and don't know the answers, I can ask the help, appropriately inside fellowship, appropriately outside fellowship. Truth is my spiritual foundation for living, not anonymity. Anonymity affords me the opportunity to find out how to be sober and keep sober one day at a time. Anonymity is the same as confidentiality with a doctor, priest and counsellor, and this worked for me day by day. The twelve steps and traditions have taught me that every day, the most important element which helps me understand reality and cope with it, is humility...
If a person wishes to remain anonymous, and feels more secure in doing so, it is none of my business and I need accept their view. If I had been anonymous in my drinking days, in the final throes of life, anonymity would not save me. I needed drastic help and to accept I was an alcoholic. And I know now that step one, admitting powerlessness over alcohol, and if I were to drink life will become unmanageable is better known by those around me. I am no special case, I do have other ailments which need to be known as well and can have complementary symptoms. There is no stigma for me in recovery unless I make it so. And if anyone has a prejudice against me for being an alcoholic in recovery, I am happy they know and they will leave me to my own devices and I can get the necessary help from those who wish to, and can offer assistance today and any day…
Step one in my own living and experience is an everyday step. At the end of the day I can have gratitude that nothing has made me turn to drink as solace, or to seek oblivion from reality. If I forget step one, the admit and accept as part of my morning meditations, I may become complacent and little by little, I become vulnerable to old ways and old behaviour. The old ways are always there in step six, where defects or old behaviour: fear, the brave face and ego come out when life gets tough. The new ways are always there in step seven, I know my shortcomings in the past were: lack of courage, lack of faith and lack of confidence. These shortcomings and vulnerabilities are something I need be aware of day-to-day, developing the courage to change, faith in doing the next right thing and have the confidence to keep on track. Courage, faith and confidence develop because I know I need ask for help often and have humility to keep learning life one day at a time…
Family and friends often asked me the how and why of not drinking anymore, and I have the confidence to share my situation with them. And when I had the support of health services they asked me to share my story in group situations. Many in group situations would not go to AA, but they would come to meetings and group discussions about how to be sober in the health service environment. So why have I shared so long and so often about recovery? It started as a service to those who refused point-blank to consider Alcoholics Anonymous. There is nothing more prejudiced against recovery than the person trying to give up drinking on their own. Giving up what has become a best friend and self-medicating exercise produces the deepest denial and it is no wonder so many suffer the consequences in time. I do feel if a person has a message of recovery, no matter what the media, no matter what, if they are able to share a message of experience, strength and hope, I hope they have the courage to do so…
I feel okay this morning; daily reflections yesterday reminded me I am not god, simply equal to everyone. And reading from this day last year: Ram Dass often said at the end of his happenings; “and of course I may be wrong.” “Ego: edging god/good out.” Humility is the key to me learning from you today…
“GLOBAL SHARING the only thing that matters is that he is an alcoholic who has found a key to sobriety.” And “the only requirement is a desire to stop drinking.” What would have happened if there had been rules, laws and regulations in fellowship?
October 27 2010 ~ for years now I have been in action and practicing the principles of sober spiritual living. I still learn every day, and so far cannot say with any certainty what life is all about. I just get to know more about life, my feelings, and my spiritual path on a daily basis.
October 27 2010 ~ Last night, seeing people, feeling a part of fellowship, the meeting before the meeting, the meeting itself, and the meeting after the meeting outside in the cold. All part of real life today. A sense of belonging, a feeling of inclusion and understanding, all equals under the cloudy skies, and today sunshine before the rain...
October 27 2010 ~ Unity Service & Recovery ~ the legacies, traditions... I love studying the traditions and putting them into practice. Same as the principles of: open, honest and willing. We are all learning, I learn something new in the traditions every day and how they impact on my daily living. Unique in our journey, authentic in our learning, progress and never perfect...
From Dr. Richard Alpert to Baba Ram Dass - Right and Wrong “of course everything I have said may be wrong.”
From Don to DonInLondon, simply a nickname for the internet, I am still the same and often called, Don O or Odd, Donald, Mr O, Mr Don and a lot more besides! Simply I am just another person on the planet and we all get called many things, I am an alcoholic too, in recovery a day at a time and this often causes some prejudice towards me, which is a consequence of who and what I am. I prefer people know me as I am and not with some part of me hidden away which is my personal choice in action. My Mum often used to mention Richard Alpert and still does from time to time. She always shares that after he gave a talk on a subject connected to spiritual living, he would say something along the lines of “of course everything I have said may be wrong.”
And of course everything I have said may be wrong too. I like this feeling of not being right and often being wrong, because I am if I am preaching or suggesting I know what is right for anyone I am serving no one. I do not know what is right for anyone; I have enough of a job on most of the time finding out what is working for me today.
So when I got to understand that the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous was a fellowship which placed the wellbeing of the individual at its heart and as groups focussed on sober living, I was attracted to learning how to live sober and spiritually. And the spiritual outlook was to be developed through action and not theory, and it would be my understanding which kept me spiritual and sober today, reality as it is and as I come to understand it before bedtime.
Another thing I heard Ram Dass say to Timothy Leary, when Leary asked him what he thought God is his reply was “God is a doorway.” I could spend years looking for the right door I guess, but the door way is always now and always a choice based on factors like truth, love and wisdom. Simple, the next action and choice made in good conscience and an open honest outlook to improve life today.
To improve life and living for everyone, and not just me!
And in a happy state of mind, I might be wrong about everything, and what a good feeling it is, to be me and learning on a daily basis, to be free and make choices and mistakes today…
AA Daily Reflections ~ "GLOBAL SHARING The only thing that matters is that he is an alcoholic who has found a key to sobriety. These legacies of suffering and of recovery are easily passed among alcoholics, one to the other. This is our gift from God, and its bestowal upon others like us is the one aim that today animates A.A.’s all around the globe. TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 151
The strength of Alcoholics Anonymous lies in the desire of each member and of each group around the world to share with other alcoholics their suffering and the steps taken to gain, and maintain, recovery. By keeping a conscious contact with my Higher Power, I make sure that I always nurture my desire to help other alcoholics, thus insuring the continuity of the wonderful fraternity of Alcoholics Anonymous."
October 27 2007
DonInLondon - ‘Day In the Life’ Inspections
I feel good. I was on my out to a meeting of AA and my brother rang to say he and family were in Lucan Place, where I live these days.
So he and his wife and the three nephews have inspected my flat. And have gone away now with approval it seems. I am glad they came around, it is very good to see them whenever. And we all went for a pizza last night. Good company and just very ok moments actually. It’s a great moment.
There were times I would avoid all contact with family some years back, when my life was completely ruined by illness and addiction. Which came first, I ponder sometimes and realise the truth is how I am today. More able and relaxed and in command of some of my faculties.
Saying Yes to and No to
An invite to the museums just now. I declined even though it felt right to go. I know too much walking will undo me pretty quick. And then time recuperating is prolonged.
I realise it’s just ok to say yes, and also the ability to say no.
Ghandi - “An emphatic no is better than a half-hearted yes.”
So now I have time to collect myself and get along. A meeting of AA missed this mid-morning, its ok as I had no commitment to be there, just a tentative inclusion not confirmed.
So much to do?
I don’t seem to have enough time to do the things which interest me these days. I am still appraising what next gently.
The last few days though have felt better and more positive. What I do I need choose. What I give in the way of a message seems key just now, and I have no clue for how long.
I don't feel you need make any apology. We are all learning, and truthfully we find our path and what works for us.
Sometimes we need to kick at the boundaries, get mad and feel we have just cause. Absolutely no one ever makes life easy for themselves. Ask me in ten years!
Always I have and will have respect for you and your endeavours, every human who strives and sees things which feel wrong, and they might well be wrong need voice opinion and find outlet, or we really never resolve anything. There are many who would be cross and feel mad at what you have said, yet everyone must have considered long and hard all issues, then made their minds up and changed them again a thousand times. we humans are allowed to do this in our world so far.
As far as amends go, its always us who are hardest on ourselves.
I feel most people would suggest we all find our path. That we can fall out with AA or any other fellowship. That we may not ever go back or need to as we can find other ways to have a happy life..
What counts in the end xxxx is simply you being comfortable with what works and makes for a good life for you. And actually I always respect a man or woman who works at life and finds the path that suits them. I have found judging others a waste of my time and makes me the prisoner as they walk free and clear without a care.
Its always right to challenge and sometimes we just find better ways to do this.
My days as a heretic are far from over, and I will feel the pain of it as well, it’s part of what we do I guess.
I am glad you are safe, and whatever works for you, then we know, and are not afraid of the hard work! Like you I am not for a quick fix anymore, and working hard at life is key. You do this and all power to your strength and determination to make good as you feel is right.
I for one am happy you challenged me, and its good for me you did. Amends - is you being happy and living to your choices and good conscience - and not mine!
At peace with yourself is the key. Keep safe and if time and opportunity and of course wisdom suggests you need take opportunity then be consistent with your values and conscience.
And some like me need a kick up the backside for us to check we are not heading for the cliff and the ocean beyond..
Keep in touch and be free xxxx you deserve a good life of your choosing.
now I understand the context.
I did some adhoc work with the Huthwaite Research Group, very much grounded in scientific study of behaviour some 15 years ago. They were profoundly certain of their scientific rigour. And in essence they were pretty good at establishing positive and affirming models to help a work force of some 20,000 make the difference in their performance.
Always the human element and emotional factors played their part in outcomes and conditioning. the attitude and behaviours were strongly influenced by environment and motivation.
Whilst the scientists were happy with their research, the results were distinctly patchy and overall hard to quantify.
I suspect your good self and application and patience had a lot to do with outcomes. Anyway not sure why I mention all this.
In my opinion I am far behind where you are in understanding behavioural science. And feel it’s better for me I am.
As to the job I do? I need one most likely, however with what I do and other medical factors, it is not on my agenda presently to test out my robustness. Indeed you are right about my employability, not in these market conditions or on advice of medical people.
Meanwhile I wish you well and best wishes Don
Just For Today And Every Day, Cherish Always...
Step 10 "Although all inventories are alike in principle, the time factor does distinguish one from another. There's the spot-check inventory, taken at any time of the day, whenever we find ourselves getting tangled up. There's the one we take at day's end, when we review the happenings of the hours just past. Here we cast up a balance sheet, crediting ourselves with things well done, and chalking up debits where due. Then there are those occasions when alone, or in the company of our sponsor or spiritual adviser, we make a careful review of our progress since the last time. Many A.A.'s go in for annual or semi-annual house-cleanings. Many of us also like the experience of an occasional retreat from the outside world where we can quiet down for an undisturbed day or so of self-overhaul and meditation.”
October 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 10 The Now Inventory
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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 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
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