December 10 2012 | AA 12 Steps In Action | Step 12 Living Principles Alcoholics Anonymous Today's Daily Reflections: "actions speak louder than words… Leading by example and not by instruction!" There are no rules, laws or regulations or any form of governance over the individual in the fellowship of AA. Our outstanding characteristics of stubbornness and defiance means we do not suffer fools gladly, especially we cannot suffer being foolish ourselves. The radical shift we experience, letting go the old life, and starting a new life is hard enough and needs no policing by zealots or rigid rule makers… Recovery is like a loose garment, room to grow, not a straitjacket today…
Video For Today:
Sharing the message about the principles and not the personalities. Twelve step principles to learn to be open, honest and willing to change. The twelve traditions to encourage everyone to work in unity, service and recovery. Principles only work in the moment of now, and the principles get bent out of shape every day as we individuals get bent out of shape every day. Principles are a statement of intent and timeless in their application. Which simply means that we work and make progress, the principles work in all conditions if we work with them. Tradition one on the first page makes it clear that no single person can tell another person what to do, and groups decide how they want to operate through the group conscience, and everyone is a trusted servant. Trusted servant does not mean that you swallow everything and become a zealot and rule enforcer, it means you continually challenge and support the cause and develop an outlook which works for you as an individual one day at a time…
If, and it is an if and unproven and beyond definition, there is a God, it will be a God of your understanding, not your next-door neighbours, not the person sitting next to you in an AA meeting, and not something defined by rule of law. The God of my understanding? As Gandhi reiterated and said, "God is truth and God is love…" Truth and love being the spiritual foundations of life and existence. And as we have an emotional and spiritual fellowship, learning what our feelings are in the moment of now, learning the truth in the moment of now and coping with reality is at the very heart of my belief system. And that is all I know so far, truth, love and wisdom in the moment of now is spiritual living...
Truth, love and wisdom in the moment of now, is my spiritual foundation and provides me with purpose. To the best of my ability to live to the truth, learn how to love people unconditionally and without expectations. And then, how to be loved back unconditionally, and without expectations. To share a message of experience, strength and hope where and when I feel comfortable and able, and sometimes when I feel very uncomfortable and hardly able at all. If fear gets in my way, then I need reflect on why and what may I do, not to overcome fear, simply to live with it, through it, and let the fear go as time permits...
Spiritual truth, love and wisdom being the spiritual foundation of me, and pretty much everybody I know, we simply make progress and not ever perfect. We are imperfectly perfect living a spiritual life in the moment of now. When it comes to fellowship and anonymity, a lot of the edicts about anonymity when they are expressed as edicts, are about fear, control, misuse of personal power and loss of equality within the fellowship. It can be very confusing to a person who sees truth as being the true spiritual foundation of their living. Anonymity is the sanctuary where we find how to be truthful, to ourselves and others. Sanctuary to explore truth, to have the humility to learn life one day at a time. Anonymity, often misused by those who wish to control and manipulate and sit on the side-lines as directors and not participants in real life as life is today… All trusted servants, with the right to have a voice, and equal rights to express opinions and beliefs. What works for you and what you believe in keeping you sober one day at a time is good enough, and the same applies either way with everyone we know. Which is why everything is a suggestion, everything is an exploration and the outcomes will always be personal choices, at least I hope personal choices one day at a time…
It took me a long time to understand that fellowship is about helping each other live an emotional and spiritual life. Feelings understood in the moment of now. The simplicity and clear message always confused by my over thinking, looking for an angle and looking for a fix. There is no fix in emotional and spiritual living. There is progress not perfection. Hungry is a feeling, angry, is a feeling, lonely is a feeling, tired is a feeling. H. A. L. T, and if I have any of these feelings, I don't need to think about it too much, all I need to do is go to a meeting of fellowship, hear about the good, the bad and the ugly of life, get perspective, eat a biscuit, let the anger go, feel less lonely by being there, and then go home and go to sleep and start again one day at a time… This is progress and not perfection, just for today…
“Carry the message” is today’s reflection. In our actions today: in meetings sharing, tea making, greeting, putting out chairs for everyone. Connecting and making friends, supporting and cherishing. Learning to be ourselves and human, some days it’s so good we could burst and other days flat as a pancake. Very human, very ordinary and still very extraordinary one day at a time…
Sharing and not telling, being asked questions and helping another work out the answers right for them. We need not try to fix anyone, because a fix is short lived. We help and build on where a person is, love them until they find out what love is, so they can love, be loved back and find usefulness in living. It takes time and builds through time, and today is where it all happens…
December 10 2010 ~ some of us may never have known serenity, some of us find serenity is restored daily, some of us are still finding out what serenity may be today. Sober each and every one may find truth, love and wisdom grows, and through sharing experience, strength and hope in recovery, we give so we may be sober today...
December 10 2010 ~ Life is difficult, that is the great truth and once we accept life is difficult, carrying the message of sobriety takes on new meaning. We can cope with life's hard knocks, enjoy the good in living, develop clarity in our outlook and share experience, strength and hope. We are part of life, included as we may be for today...
AA Daily Reflections ~ "CARRYING THE MESSAGE Now, what about the rest of the Twelfth Step? The wonderful energy it releases and the eager action by which it carries our message to the next suffering alcoholic and which finally translates the Twelve Steps into action upon all our affairs is the payoff, the magnificent reality, of Alcoholics Anonymous. TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 109
To renounce the alcoholic world is not to abandon it, but to act upon principles I have come to love and cherish, and to restore in others who still suffer the serenity I have come to know. When I am truly committed to this purpose, it matters little what clothes I wear or how I make a living. My task is to carry the message, and to lead by example, not design."
December 10 2007
DonInLondon - ‘Day In the Life’ Telephone Culture
Why don’t we answer the Phone?
It may be me, I often leave my telephones set to silent. Its always been a trait in me for a long while. I never really understood why until recently. The telephone offers a way to keep in touch, or keep out of touch as we choose.
About ten years back I was about half way through a prolonged and difficult time. A nervous collapse, a dread of life itself and then an anxious gloom descended with not one coping strategy to pull me out of the mire of despair. Despair and agitation are not good bedfellows for any human, and I was a very disturbed and unhappy person. Nothing, absolutely nothing worked to rest easy or let go the pernicious anxiety which engulfed me for another year. Only then settling into a clinical depression..
Some feedback from my video last night. And I felt it was just so, that some had found their deep of sad tidings and tears for times changing and not with any perceivable benefit. Sometimes when we talk of grief and talk of times past, the connection is and always will be to the last moment when our worlds were turned upside down. Many tears spilled for life changes not wanted I realise.
Its been ok to share, and if I had to do the same again I feel I would. We need acknowledge where we are and what is happening, feelings suppressed do us no good.
This time of year its hard sometimes to keep on an even keel. So easy to be blown off course and then wonder why we feel so miserable. We deny a lot of matters to do with ourselves and the past. Better to dig deep, find where anxiety is and be aware of myself and others near and dear, distant and still dear. We need not stop loving, we may however keep letting go what holds us to old feelings and the past.
We need dust off our ways to cope, to be loving and tolerant, to understand what is right for us and then behave in accord with our true needs. It is difficult sometimes to work our needs out.
Knowing Ourselves and what makes us tick helps a lot. And the good ways to deal with as I have heard it called, “the wreckage of the past.” I feel some lifetimes may be needed to help me deal with my wreckage and then other days I am able or more able and the past seems to be well and truly dealt with. Not so today.
Long gone and a complicated man. With a lot of intellect, a lot of fear and unresolved outlooks, even on his death bed almost two decades ago. I was reminded by a friend of one of their parents dying and there was God and there was no miracle to bring them through their ailments.
We tend to focus on all a person has been and work out how best to resolve our outlooks, time is what it takes, slowing down and not covering up those feelings, expression is needed as we learn to live through the hardest moments.
My dad had no way to understand much of life where it might have been different. Time, the wars of the last century and many unhappy times afforded him no easy living ever. I see it in his life, and see how I followed a similar path until I got help and opened myself to a different world, where torments were dealt with and old times revered as learning affords a change and a new start each and every day.
There is always hope, strength from understanding and mostly from experience.
I am lucky today…
10th December 2006
Way of Life
Do we have a way of life, a pattern for us to follow. Torments from generations past dog us all the way until we break patterns we are taught. We may believe all our patterns of life are to the good. Or just some. Or none. Its our choice these days in the modern world to change ourselves for we cannot change anything else with lasting effect.
The inside job of life
It is an inside job to change our behaviour from what we learn from family and society. We may believe much of the prejudice of time, or we may choose to believe the truth of life, of humanity and our times present.
Times present where our world wars over prejudice of colour religion and anything we don’t understand. The sheer ignorance of humanity is becoming self-evident in National prejudice and self-interest. This world thrives on the true exchange we are developing, commerce wins the battle, politics loses wars. The real sense of peace in our time is lost as the leader of the free world continues to make prejudice and our world suffers loss of faith in humanity and turns to God and belief, and everything which has destroyed civilisation.
The cult of economy will break our humanity always as greed, want and need are mixed up, and we never truly understand the value of life as it is.
Values present, community, society are all challenged by old thinking, supremacy over the many by the few. Power rests not in the common man, it rests in decaying institutions, it rests in prejudice and old life.
The Brave New World
Our brave new world of scarcity, exchange, poverty, disease and spreading concerns over our climate and our consumption of base resources and no replenishment. We are sowing discontent with every breath as humanity like the lemming finds its own metaphoric cliff to leap into extinction and endings of life as we might have known it.
Divisions of want and wealth
Always we are lost to time as we pursue all elements of power and control of scarcity when we can make a world of abundance. We let ignorance go unchecked as Global economy is misunderstood and opportunity to harmony and peace is lost in starvation and want. Self-interest starves the multitude we are becoming
Destiny and Resentments so Deep
If we as individuals are unable to see destiny as our planet is scavenged and plundered, as we bear ill will and resentment to living at all and prejudices so deep we hinder our own personal progress, what chance has this world of humanity got?
Not that much, and it may take more hell on earth to understand old follies made and maintained to make commerce our false choice and humanity starves with every breath.
I do reflect on big world matters and know our personal outlook helps serve our overall attitude to living and behaving every day.
It is the backbone of all ill will and self will run riot to its inevitable course in greed and consumption. When we work out all we ever resent is ourselves in our desperate attempt to make life to the good and fail. In some ways resentments to ourselves grow outwards and poison all human doings. We may do well to find life as it is real and let go old notions and petty squabbles. We are bigger when we let go our resentments at ourselves which make us envious, fearful and depressed. But how to break these old ideas and ways of living?
We can if we realise, if we choose and learn our true capacities as humans, and the beings we are in life. It will take another thousand years of uncivilised civilisation before enough will know the difference.
Meanwhile this one human
Yes meanwhile I tread a path which makes me see my destiny merely on a daily basis. To live and work to the good, to let go old ideas and prejudice, and give all I know as much forgiveness I would ask for myself. And in the process asking for others what I would wish for myself, let go old resentments made so deep in me, its taken most my life to know what they are before ever doing a thing to change my own outlook.
We can change nothing but ourselves, and lead by our own example, work as we may to common good and play our part, just merely our human size and let go ego’s drift to hell on earth.
We learn as we go
And as has been said many times all the world’s a stage and we are merely players. This world of equal sized people, with unequal outlooks and ways to live, we cheat nations and their civilisations in honour to past ideologies and notions of right and wrong. Mankind will learn through life, to the good and bitter times in all respects, it is better to tread soft and be human as beings we are, all equal to ourselves. Nature and Providence will level us or let us build a better future through hard centuries and time.
We play our part, live to the good, make our way and be open and honest. Let ourselves be whatever we can be and let nations emerge as they will, the Brave New World is here right now, and our rewards are made as we live and do. Good conscience is our guide, our humanity at stake and our civilisation and self-destruction assured as we squander and live to want and not to need.
This is not disheartening to me for as a species we are still young in this world’s existence. Yet we might anticipate more from ourselves than we do, as we shrug our shoulders and dig in for the long haul of life, actually so short it makes little impact on this world.
We may view the good and bad of life, do what we may to make it to the good, and be assured we live reality as we may. Best to live reality with as clear a conscience we can muster in our human doings, so we become human beings, the best of what we can be, and without prejudice!
December 10th 2005
Sometimes our world feels a harsh and difficult place to be. And today feels like this for me. I know for others it may be the most wonderful day ever experienced. Its just the way things are. No rhyme, no reason?
Events in the world can crowd us, we feel everything as if for the first time, some say it’s a 'raw' feeling. Not so today. I feel the weight of painful recollections, about my life and history. And at the same time a whole mind full of recollections, which are fantastic and wonderful. They still hurt today. They are memories of another life, another time, and definitely in my own lifetime. Strange thing to say? Not really, it’s the life we have these days, sometimes our life will change so dramatically, it feels like a complete new and different life. And its not always to the good.
Yet I work at acceptance and I word at letting go old life experiences. Yes I let go, and sometimes memories flood back. I have had an extraordinary life, as extraordinary as anyone else, as good and bad, as colourful and magical, as unpleasant and daunting till I could not think or feel anything but terror. And its all inside me. I let go most everything and make room for new and different experiences. And thank goodness we have room to make for the new! When we feel, we are indeed fortunate, to build and grow our experience of life. And life is our only deal. When the deal is rough, we learn as much as we learn when life is good. And in a very Zen way, all life, good and bad have their place to stretch our experience.
Today though, as if transported to happiest moments, in the best of company and exquisite pleasure at the time, it brings not just a wistful moment of recollection, it brings a torrent of sadness for today and my life. Time will put me right, and bring back balance. Until then, I feel everything, not raw as if for the first time. More like worn down by the thousandth time, a Universe of pain, of sadness, of happiness and love felt and lost, of every ache, of every jagged tear into memories recollected in quick time and no respite.
This is harsh, and a reminder to keep an eye on every element of me,. There is no real 'let go' in the sense of forgetting, the let go is letting go the moment, and being aware it will pass. All things shall pass… Harsh moments, scrape and rip away forgetful walls. Broken down by tides of dread where dark murk holds fear in our oceans of life. Let go? Soonest one hopes, or drown in depths where senses lie in ruin…
December 10th 2004
You always have a choice but you forget that you have it. Do you remember the energy and enthusiasm you had on the first day of your first job? You consciously chose to do the work you had gladly accepted to do. But then you gradually fell asleep to the choice you made, and the day became "I have to" go to work, instead of "I want to" go to work. You forgot to see all the opportunities which come with work - opportunities like learning, nourishing and being nourished by others, developing new relationships, expanding your personal capacity. Instead you decided it was just something that you had to do to 'get the money'. This is why most people are sleep-walking through their lives, and they don't know it. The solution, choose your work every day, put the energy of love into your relationships...every day, even if you don't particularly like your job or the people around you. And you'll be amazed at how your life transforms. When you choose to put love into what you do, the universe will move heaven and hell to let you do what you love.
Just For Today And Every Day, Cherish Always...
“Awakening as the result of what? The result, or consequence of taking the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous is a Spiritual Awakening. Please reflect that this step does not say the awakening comes as the result of taking steps 1 through 11, those preceding Step 12. On the contrary, the awakening comes as the result of taking these (all of the twelve) steps, including Step 12. (If you disagree, that is wonderful. Keep on digesting these steps.)” Big Book Bunch
December 2012 | Playlist About Step Twelve: Step Twelve Playlist
AA Official Online Site: Big Book And Twelve And Twelve
AA Official Online Site: Daily Reflections
December 2012 | Step Twelve Reading Video Link:
December 2012 | Video Reading How It Works:
December 2012 | Video Reading A Vision For You:
December 2012 | Video About Grief And Depression