November 29 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 11 Daily Meditation Alcoholics Anonymous Today's Daily Reflections: "we are all active examples of recovery, when we are good, when we are bad, and when we are ugly…" Nobody is perfect! And every person on the planet is making progress in one way or another, learning as we go. An emotional and spiritual fellowship: helps us to be able to experience our feelings in the moment of now, without the hangover from the past. And we are active guardians of the fellowship living and working in unity, service and recovery. Active guardians and active examples of recovery working one day at a time. Sometimes we are very good, sometimes we can be very bad and sometimes plain old ugly comes out to play in the moment of now…
Video For Today:
It feels very relevant today that in the United Kingdom, a report on press excesses and media poking about in the business of other people is a big issue. At the level of press, radio and films, media in the UK is likely to dig around in the business of any public figure or anyone in the public eye for whatever reason. Some people might say that the gutter press are looking for stories from the gutter, or hidden truths not revealed, for fear of being found out. If a person has a mental illness, or an allergy, or addiction which is covered up and seemed to be in the public interest, there can be a feeding frenzy on the secrets being revealed. Being in recovery is a virtue in my own opinion, it is just another fact of life, only made incredible if it is revealed as a secret I have been keeping to myself for whatever reason. If I keep a secret about me, which impacts on other people, the other people are likely to feel betrayed. Always a personal choice what we reveal to other people, just be aware how other people react to the secrets revealed by others on our behalf…
Living to the truth of who I am inside and outside fellowship, it is a constant endeavour. Learning the truth and living the truth is life long as a principle. If I am living to the truth, I hope I am learning as I go. I need humility to keep on learning and the serenity prayer keeps on showing me and reminding me of what I can and cannot do. Truth is part of my emotional and spiritual foundation, how to love and how to be loved back is also part of my emotional and spiritual foundation. Wisdom through experience, what I can do, the potential I have and what I cannot do, my limits as a human being and the wisdom growing one day at a time. If people know the whole truth of me, they have more of an idea about my potential and what I might be able to do. If people only know part of the truth about me, and I keep something back and secret, there will always be suspicion about what I cannot do, and actually if I am unclear and evasive, there are plenty of people who won't bother to find out how I might fit in one day at a time…
The twelve steps, helping me be open, honest and willing to learn one day at a time. The twelve traditions, helping me be able to live in unity, service and recovery. Practising these principles in all my affairs keeps me humble. I don't hide the truth, I find out where I fit on a daily basis. If people don't like or are prejudiced towards alcoholics in recovery, I would rather not pretend to fit in with them or their outlook of prejudice against me. I would rather expose their prejudice sooner rather than later, by being shunned or excluded by them. I often say love people hate their behaviour, and the worst thing is to undervalue myself as a human being by joining in the prejudice of others have about anything. Self-prejudice perpetuates prejudice. Humility and self-esteem, learning life daily and being confident to learn, is virtuous. Secrecy, shame and guilt and anything else which goes with hiding away just perpetuates prejudice and myths about human beings. I do not need to undermine myself today. And I am grateful to be an alcoholic in recovery…
How am I feeling today, why and what can I do? Emotionally and spiritually in the moment of now I feel okay. Physically, I am at my pain threshold, due to 2 slipped discs and a trapped nerve I cannot walk beyond a few steps, which is irritating because I want to get to a doctor’s appointment and will not be able to get there, and I will have to ask for advice on what to do. Incapacities, and not even being able to get to the medical appointment! It will only be irritating to me if I do not explain what is going on to the medical centre who might be able to help me. I can cope by being patient and not trying to do something I cannot do today. I need accept the truth and work with it in the moment…
I can be the best I can just for today. On the other hand, I would like to pretend I am as strong as an ox, as healthy as I was in the past, that I do not have type I diabetes, courtesy of my age. That clinical depression is an illness I do not have. I would like to be attractive and available and good partner material, with a profile women or a least one woman might adore. And not require a little blue pill in order to perform in the bedroom department. I might like to be able to burn the candle at both ends like I used to, party all night and work hard all day… I'd rather not live a fantasy, and I'd rather not pretend I am something I am not. Thankfully, emotionally and spiritually, I can feel life as it is and cope with the moment of now. I know how to love, and I am learning how to be loved back, and there are a whole load of useful things I can do today. And even with chronic pain, I can be happy in the imperfectly perfect moment of now…
Tenacious and not a quitter, see things through, I would fall in love, do everything to make a relationship work. And with work whatever hours to get the job done. I would do anything to make anything possible. A can do man. Now I am a can do, cannot do man, learning the wisdom to know the difference one day at a time…
Self-seeking and denial, stubbornness and defiance are not so good for me today. These characteristics made me successful for many a year with the wrong people, in the wrong places and with things which have no value in recovery. Letting go and seeing the truth, how to love and be loved back with the right people in the right places at the right time, makes living in the moment imperfectly perfect. And humility to keep learning is tough and so rewarding just for today…
Prayer and meditation alert me to my part in life. It is never going to help me know your part in matters and tell you. I can change me, my attitudes and behaviour. My feelings and mood will always tell me why I think the way I do. Angry, I will blame you, hurt I may blame myself, balanced I will have no need of blame. Whatever my feelings, if I know what they are I can see solutions rather than problems today…
November 29 2010 ~ Unity, service and recovery! My favourite past times involve greeting and making the tea, difficult in recent times. From turning up to doing the chores we all do what we can. They may be called commitments or chores, I always feel better for having done something like useful in my case silence may be key...
November 29 2010 ~ Active guardians of the principles: to be open, honest and willing to live sober today and in fellowship: practice unity, service and recovery. We do what we are able to do, and share experience, strength and hope as we may. Truth is my spiritual compass, not my opinion, the truth as it is with love and wisdom today...
AA Daily Reflections ~ "ACTIVE GUARDIANS” NOVEMBER 29 To us, however, it represents far more than a sound public relations policy. It is more than a denial of self-seeking. This Tradition is a constant and practical reminder that personal ambition has no place in A.A. In it, each member becomes an active guardian of our Fellowship. TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 183
The basic concept of humility is expressed in the Eleventh Tradition: it allows me to participate completely in the program in such a simple, yet profound manner; it fulfils my need to be an integral part of a significant whole. Humility brings me closer to the actual spirit of togetherness and oneness, without which I could not stay sober. In remembering that every member is an example of sobriety, each one living the Eleventh Tradition, I am able to experience freedom because each one of us is anonymous."
November 29 2007
DonInLondon - ‘Day in the Life’ Running On Empty
“Detachment [Thought For The Day] Modified by me, to inclusive sharing
We need power to remain free from the influence of others if this is desirable. Detachment is this power. If we can't stay detached from influences, we will not be able to keep our thoughts under control. From there it will be a downward spiral until all trace of inner well-being is lost. The first step in detachment is to understand who we are as a spiritual entity. This allows us to 'detach' ourselves from our physical identity, and it's world of limited thoughts and feelings, and 'attach' instead to our spiritual personality, the being of inner peace and power. A normal day will be filled with challenges to this detachment. On the one side will be our spiritual awareness, on the other will be the attraction towards human beings and the material world. Detachment is not a question of becoming separate from the latter, but of simply remaining conscious of ourselves as a spiritual beings and being in the world and playing our part. Detachment simply means to keep ourselves centred in our spirituality.”
Inclusive sharing, is a way to share as a peer group may, on equal terms and me the same size as anyone. I am not here to teach or lecture just share my thoughts and those of others which seem relevant today.
An explosive outburst from me which on reflection might have been somewhat abusive about Rehab.
Mentioned several times yesterday in one of my meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous, and a reminder to self, I speak for me and not AA, there are no spokespersons for the AA fellowship, AA being anonymous.
Rehab and Broken
Already broken again by life, rehab was my last ditch attempt to get help, almost beyond the last chance saloon as drinking was killing me and I could not stop on my own.
Broken literally, and physically and spiritually. And then in rehab to be broken more? Or just plain tortured by the way it was run to break people even further until nothing was left. Odd to feel so angry and enraged?
A regime to help people follow a twelve step programme, indeed it is a wonder anyone got through those last months in my rehab from hell. That rehab is closed now, their methods I am sad to know still prevail elsewhere.
Break a person down, we need build them up, if this is the aim? I still have no clue to the regime and torments inflicted as daily torments led to me discharging myself after three months. I drank on my rage and ended up on the streets. So rehab was not my key to sobriety, AA was and is the Key for me,
So with all that return to unpleasant memories and a relief that my health is still manageable for now, I was tired out.
And of course sharing about progress and not perfect is and remains my central message these last few months. To feel that anger out again in the gaze of others, it was not really cathartic, it just made for me expressing my outlook and experiences of wounding times rather than mending times.
Patience and as a friend wrote to me earlier, doing the next right thing, often slowly and deliberately is paramount for me today.
I know in some areas of endeavour burn is a feature and the experiences we hold inside which provide for more torture are clearly unhelpful.
An angry and abusive outburst by me left me saddened and also reminded me that I see in others what bothers me about my insides.
I was indelicate and most likely wrong yesterday sharing my thoughts about recovery and where do these elements of us come from in our history. Progress is not perfect and I am far from perfect in all departments of living. Glad this is so or life would have no meaning.
Forever Imperfect Perfect
This is me and long may it be so, and in fellowship just this one day will do to have a go at living and experiencing all life may be..
29th November 2006
What is our primary purpose? Do we have any idea? Actually somewhere in living life we often forget we might have a primary purpose. And indeed it seems to me we can be so bogged down with so much going on we forget it completely.
Somewhere in the dim dark of my memories it feels like I heard the message in a song. And the song was “all you need is love.” Not so hard as a primary purpose.
And quite like the needs and wants we all get smothered by, needs being essentials and wants being more than basic needs, we get bamboozled and fogged up with all sorts of things we think we want, forgetting our need to feel in love with living.
If we truly only need love, then why is it we make it so hard and so complicated? Actually we are probably suffering from technology overload and every form of bum steer we can invent to make life worth living. We forget from infancy we are driven by our need for love. We can be fascinated by a full life, and without love it has some austere feel to it we cannot put our finger on. Its loneliness.
I was, as has been the case for some days, quite fed up and uncertain what to do. Why I feel this way is really quite simple, I had lost touch with foundations of me and what I am about. And truly it is about love. Not needing it and not wanting it are not the issue. Its just love as it is and simply I had lost touch with this vital element of living. We need love, yes we do. All we need is love and in a world of billions why is it we can feel alone and unloved.
I feel it has to do with what is going on in our hearts. What we really need is opportunity to love and be loved. And society has got so cock eyed and love has been built to be more than just what it is. Love is the simplest of emotions and the most complicated to express and also receive with an open heart.
So what makes we want to write about love tonight?
I go to fellowship meetings as if they are part of my living these days. I go to my fellowship meetings every day if this is possible, and the number of days going, to the odd one I don’t, well there is always a difference in how I feel and how I behave when I miss them.
When I don’t go to meetings, I feel alone and left with feelings which can really make me feel unhappy. That in some way expression of them is lost, that expression of them may be unwelcome, that in some way expression of love can be met with repulsion. Repulsion and repulsive. These feelings are ignited somewhere from pain and hurt felt over the years.
We can be completely repulsive to some people while others will love us for what and who we are, just another human being, just another average Joe, and of course just about able to get from one day to the next, with feeling, rather than suppression of feelings.
Love and honesty
They sort of go hand in hand like not loving and dishonesty. Yet it seems to be when we express love, and share it, we always run this risk of repulsion and rebuttal. As if in some way our love, or is it something we feel is love, is to be rejected as our love is really unwanted and not wanted, where we may wish it most.
Seems wishes and fantasies play big parts on where love may end up, repulsive and unwanted. And at the same time we might offer more of it as if that will work. And actually the more we may love, the more we are unwelcome, for its not being received or due, or even dare I say it recognised as love.
Love and dishonesty
Seems also we might offer our love and be dishonest in it too. For we may want something for our love, that there is some payment involved, or some favour bestowed because of it. We are given love because we have some facet we are able to give and make good for someone. Seems there is plenty of love around for materialistic, as well as other securities on offer. Yet this is not love. Its just security from hardship and not secure anything, but a bargaining we might do well without.
Love is all we need
And certainly we need to start with ourselves. We need find our right size and value in just being able to love a bit of living just one day long.
How do I get to love?
I go and find out every day how to love and be loved, from my fellowship. A bunch of what might be described as extreme individuals on a path back to ordinary. The ordinary of living life just one day at a time and with sober heads. We have been bashed and beaten by our own self-loathing and unfulfilled outlook. And we learned to love ourselves as best we could to avoid pain and hurt. And our journey into sober living, its as much a way to learn to love reality and our part in it. The reality of being present to feel anything and everything as it occurs.
Being present means we do learn to be involved, open to love and be loved. And actually we do, we learn that we might be loved, and we might be hated. That we are here to feel is pretty darn amazing. For we have trodden the path of self-destruction with no love for man nor beast, just obsession and oblivion.
And as we get sober and be ever present in our living, we see a big change in our outlook to love and be loved. Remember though we are reality seekers and part of reality is to see love and see no love, that we see all elements of living just as they are. Not easy as our path is torture in early days, only maybe getting better as we learn to accept and know we can make as many cock ups and failures in sober life as we do in obsessions. The truth of reality is its just like everyone else, sometimes good and sometimes just plain awful. We know the difference and learn how to get more to the good and less to the horrid. It is just the way it is, and we need be learners all over a day at a time.
When I went out tonight
Even though I had no real idea where I was going until I got on the bike, I headed to Chelsea. And not to the nearest meeting. I went out of my way. The reason, a longer ride on the bike, because I need exercise. I need exercise but walking just hurts. So riding the bike is part of my primary purpose to keep active, even when walking hurts and I cannot get far.
Enlightenment comes where it will without planning and without contrivance I might make. Whatever guide I have in my head which suggested I head for Chelsea did me a power of good. My good conscience was part of it as I needed exercise and keep my system active, even when I cannot walk any distance, the bike provides opportunity, and this is a bicycle I need to power myself. Weird but true I can cycle even when I cannot walk.
This one was special it felt cold and was distinctly chilly, but within moments of hearing the share and the share back from the fellows there, I was definitely in the right place to get the right message.
And the message was easy, and the suggestions heartfelt and just plain common sense. And the spiritual message was keep living reality with a sober head and we can feel present in this ever present, present moment of now.
Now how hard is that to express. As hard as it is to live a lifetime realising we don’t get life at all, because we can only really get life from living it with a clear mind and clear support and fellowship from people who care enough to turn up and share their experience strength and hope. So easy, we are so challenged by the morass of life and life wanting, that we forget the simplicity of living at all. That love for ourselves and our fellows is always there when we connect to it, rather than milk it and squeeze it out of others we encounter. Its just give and take, sometimes one way, sometimes both ways. And we need not dally when things are not right. We simply need to move on and find our balance again. As life offers and we can recognise.
Along the way we experience every human quality we might consider vices and virtues, they are merely all elements of love and hate. Love and hate go together as if we can ever realise one without the other.
Testaments to good or bad
We hear them as often as we meet, its our challenge to make what we learn and wisdom gained from ,living reality and not dreams we might conjure to fill the gap of life. Emptiness gives room for learning, we might reflect on this as we next fill up with nonsense we pick up as we go and diverts us from our purpose, simply to live life as it offers.
November 29th 2005
A Challenge To Democracy
"Democracy in its ideal sense is the notion that "the people" should have the right to rule themselves. This ideal is pursued by implementing a system of voting such that the majority of people rule, either directly or indirectly through elected representatives." Democracies may be "liberal," where fundamental rights of individuals in the minority are protected by law, or they may be "illiberal" where they are not." We in the western democracies are forever challenging our own democracy and challenging others who are on their way to democracy. We forget how long it took us to extend democracy to more and more people who live within our geographical boundaries. And we sometimes forget how fragile, how new and how difficult it is to maintain democratic process, especially if things do not go our way. We would be foolish if we thought we could develop democracy faster than we do in our own back yard. And we would be very foolish to believe we can graft democracy on to another political and cultural system which has no basis in democracy. At least we would consider it foolhardy to go try change say, China or Russia, who are in turmoil currently and certainly big enough to repel foolish people who might try to interfere, us. What are we doing these days, when we continue to believe we have the one and only answer, that we must not only share it, but worse, impose it on others? The are many systems of living we might take in account, especially those systems we have within our families and those within our 'faiths'. There is no exclusivity of right, surely we have learned this lesson over and over through history. When we 'put down' others way of life, we might be better engaged in living our own lives and improving our own lot. When we judge others and view them with prejudice, we might reflect on why we form prejudice.
We live in a world which evolves as fast as it can to ever changing political and economic systems. We hold to our democracies because we value them.
I would argue we are best deployed making our democracies safe and working toward them being more inclusive and robust. I would suggest we are best able to influence other world systems through legitimised bodies, for example the United Nations. When we are unhappy with our influence, we need to find the means to strengthen our influence through democratic process. We need to ensure we deploy our best resources and agencies of democratic change to make good our beliefs, values and principles. We continue our democratic process with countries big enough and bad enough to give us a bloody nose. And now we have found we can be equally hurt by others less militarily potent, through terror and terrorism. Terrorists are born out of belief, values and principles, just as strong as our own democratic process. And the world has learned no matter what size opponent is these days, they will be heard one way or another.
Surely we must find the means to inclusive and democratic process, to develop and acknowledge the rights of all world citizens. And only when we have reached a view, which has included all interested parties, a multinational view, might we then consider a military outcome of last resort? After all, that is the basis for the United Nations, made better with use than ignoring its process. And with our current terror threat from within, we in democracies must be robust in our vigilance, be fair in our practice, inclusive in our due process and mature in our outlook.
Two thousand years of prejudice in the Middle East surely sets an example of how easily we can become imperilled in life threatening conflict. And a conflict over what? Beyond faith our world turns on resources. Our most able resource is mankind itself. Best we settle our differences and make best use our resources.
November 29th 2004
the more I develop the habit of noticing goodness, the more my own sense of wellbeing rises.
Keep a weather eye to goodness, its always there, the right thing, the glimmer of hope. Even when invisible to us, it shines on, and on, lest we forget, darkness will pass
Just For Today And Every Day, Cherish Always...
“The method of prayer & meditation. We often hear it said in meetings that the speaker "hits his knees every morning." Not being brought up Catholic or Muslim, we envisioned that slapping of the knees might be spiritually significant in A.A. When we discovered that the act of prayer was being referred to, we asked why A.A. tells us to get on our knees to pray. We were informed that A.A. makes no such suggestion. In fact, reference to praying on the knees, in the original draft of Step 7, was explicitly removed to prevent the misconception that such a practice was suggested. Moreover, to be on one’s knees as a prior condition to prayer will prevent prayer at many opportunities during the day. If you or your sponsor think that you should be on your knees for correct prayer, then by all means do so. It might just be the best way to pray. For the content of prayer, see Step 11b that follows.” BB Bunch
November 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 10 The Now Inventory
Alcoholics Anonymous | Step Eleven Reading Video Link:
November 2012 | Video Reading How It Works:
November 2012 | Video Reading Into Action :
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
About Psychosis And Depression: