Alcoholics Anonymous Blog/Video Nov 23 DonInLondon Step 11 "Truth Love Wisdom"
"Love, forgiveness, harmony, truth, faith, hope, light, and joy to every human being."
November 23, 2013 Step Eleven Month: "sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood him, praying only for knowledge of his will for us and the power to carry that out." Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy." Max Ehrmann
Therefore, we have peace with God whatever you conceive him to be. Prayer meditation: an understanding with oneself about the possible, the can do, and the cannot do on a daily basis. Alone with our own thoughts can be a very difficult situation. Opening up our own internal debate to the scrutiny of a power greater than us? This is a personal journey of understanding the big picture of living, where we fit one day at a time, how to change just a little bit to meet the changes of the day or simply stop doing something which is bad or ugly and find a better path today.
Just because you see a lot of people joining in a particular way of life, it does not mean that you have to alter your opinions and beliefs which work for you. Unless of course your opinions and beliefs are self-harming and harming other people. Sometimes we don't know where we are or how we feel about life and trying to work out all of this on our own is desperately difficult. The Fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous does not ask you to adopt a belief in something which is alien to you. When I read appendix I I; "the spiritual experience," it opened up the door to living a spiritual existence of the educational variety. I can clearly state the educational variety of spiritual experience always worked in the moment of now, providing you have an understanding of what spiritual can be or is today. Fellowship is all about emotional and spiritual experiences, living in the moment of now, living and coping with the reality of now and asking for help as we go along and need it. The big picture is not our single outlook, it is the outlook of those we live with today.
I don't know why, over twenty years ago, my father in his last days was desperately unwell. My mother was looking after him at home. My brother and sister and me, we were working far away and travelling to see them as often as we could. Each of us found it very difficult to cope with the situation, and we all did what we could to help. My dad had been a bit of a curmudgeon, a truly difficult individual and yet in those last days we realised just how much we loved him. I can remember arriving late one evening, or morning I can't quite recall day or night back then. When I saw my father in his room, my brother was shaving his beard, and trying to make dad more comfortable. My brother and my father, a cherishing moment in time. Twenty years later, if I get the chance today, I will call my brother and remind him of that moment in time.
Most days I get to chat with both my sister and my mother who live together in another city. I was talking to my mum yesterday, and she was still pondering about my brother asking her if she believed in God. It wasn't really an emphatic no, she simply stated that she did not believe in the bearded depiction of a man on a cloud surrounded by angels and cherubs. And I guess that's why desiderata by Max Ehrmann always comes into my mind. "The God of our understanding?" What matters is what each person considers to be a higher power, aware of the big picture and the possibilities. For me as an individual, the word God is all about: "truth, love and wisdom." And the bigger picture is always illuminated through people. And people can be good bad and ugly depending on the current conditions of the day. We can always find the big picture and ask for help, and of course the devil is always in the details.
My mum had a check-up on Wednesday relating to on-going cancer treatment. She is not one to dwell, but the days before the check-up, the check-up itself and then being told that there would be an appointment in four weeks for the results to be a bit of an anti-climax. I relate with this a lot at the moment, having had many check-up’s to various parts of my anatomy, and in my case nothing sinister has come up yet. Technicians take a quick look and if anything is untoward an appointment will be made immediately. Even though we do not recognise what is going on at the time, no matter how much one lives in the day, it is always a nagging doubt and stressful. My mum, at the age of eighty-two is doing well considering everything. And my sister is there for her in person, my brother on the iPad and me on the telephone, no wonder she gets stressed! Her way of dealing with us is usually to throw a crossword clue our way, and they are usually bloody hard! Mum has all her marbles, marvellous one day at a time.
I am smiling, writing some words each day is a form of prayer and meditation for yours truly. I never know quite what can to come out of me until I start reflecting. Sometimes it feels like there is a lot going on in my head all the time and I just don't know until I stop and pause, reflect and meditate. That moment about my brother and my father so long ago could have been lost to time if I had not paused long enough to really understand the love my brother showed and demonstrated for my dad. It gives me good reason to feel right and be happy. Sometimes we lose touch with what life is all about. Life is about love, and we don't know what love is very often until it is lost in the trivia of life. Cherish the good, forgive everything and happiness and serenity can be found in the moment of now.
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