Saturday, 27 August 2016

Randie Paul at 3 Legacies Group #essentialsofrecovery




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Daily Reflections #essentialsofrec


CENTERING OUR THOUGHTS

When World War II broke out, our A.A. dependence on a Higher Power had its first major test. A.A.’s entered the services and were scattered all over the world. Would they be able to take the discipline, stand up under fire, and endure . . . ?

As Bill Sees It, p.200

I will center my thoughts on a Higher Power. I will surrender all to this power within me. I will become a soldier for this power, feeling the might of the spiritual army as it exists in my life today. I will allow a wave of spiritual union to connect me through my gratitude, obedience and discipline to this Higher Power. Let me allow this power to lead me through the orders of the day. May the steps I take today strengthen my words and deeds, may I know that the message I carry is mine to share, given freely by this power greater than myself. 
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Just For Today #essentialsofrec


Choosing Life

“Change from self-destructive patterns of life became necessary”

Basic Text p.16

Active addiction is a smoldering death-wish. Each of us courted death every time we used. Our lifestyles, too, put us at risk. The life of an addict is sold cheaply with every day and every dose.

In recovery, the first pattern we change is the pattern of using. Staying clean is the start of our journey into life. But our self-destructive behavior usually went far deeper than just our using. Even in recovery, we may still treat ourselves as if we are worthless. When we treat ourselves badly, we feel badly. And when we feel badly, we seek relief-maybe even in our old solution, drugs.

Choosing recovery means choosing life. We decide each day that we want to live and be free. Each time we avoid self-destructive behavior, we choose recovery.

Just for today: I will choose life by choosing recovery. I will take care of myself. 
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Twenty-Four Hours A Day #essentialsofrec



A.A. Thought For The Day

“We must be willing to make amends to all the people we have harmed. We must do the best we can to repair the damage done in the past. When we make amends, when we say: ‘I’m sorry,’ the person is sure at least to be impressed by our sincere desire to set right the wrong. Sometimes people we are making amends to admit their own faults, so feuds of long standing melt away. Our most ruthless creditors will sometimes surprise us. In general, we must be willing to do the right thing, no matter what the consequences may be for us.” Have I made a sincere effort to make amends to the people I have harmed?

Meditation For The Day

The grace of God cures disharmony and disorder in human relationships. Directly you put your affairs, with their confusion and their difficulties, into God’s hands. He begins to effect a cure of all the disharmony and disorder. You can believe that He will cause you no more pain in the doing of it than a physician that knows how to effect a cure would cause a patient. You can have faith that God will do all that is necessary as painlessly as possible. But you must be willing to submit to His treatment, even if you cannot now see the meaning or purpose of it.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may willingly submit to whatever spiritual discipline is necessary. I pray that I may accept whatever it takes to live a better life.
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As Bill Sees It #essentialsofrec



Maudlin Martyrdom, p. 238

“Self-pity is one of the most unhappy and consuming defects we know. It is a bar to all spiritual progress and can cut off all effective communication with our fellows because of its inordinate demands for attention and sympathy. It is a maudlin form of martyrdom, which we can ill afford.

“The remedy? Well, let’s have a hard look at ourselves, and a still harder one at A.A.’s Twelve Steps to recovery. When we see how many of our fellow A.A.’s have used the Steps to transcend great pain and adversity, we shall be inspired to try these life-giving principles for ourselves.”

Letter, 1966
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Walk In Dry Places #essentialsofrec


Finding Our Real Selves
Building Self-esteem

Many of us sold ourselves short while we were drinking. We wanted approval and acceptance, but often felt unworthy of it, even accepting the unfavorable opinions others had toward us. We resented such opinions, but secretly feared that our critics were right.

In the Twelve Step program, however, we discover a higher and better self that hadn’t found expression during active drinking. We no longer have to impress anybody, we no longer need applause, and we no longer crave the false camaraderie that passes for friendship among problem drinkers. We can, in many ways, become new people.

When we experience such change and growth, we may come to wonder how we ever could have been so deluded by the sick self of our drinking years. We feel relief when we realize that we no longer have to live and think that way…. if we continue in the program and make sobriety our highest priority. We will realize too that the self we find in sobriety is the real self…. a person who was there all along but was crowded out and suppressed by the demands of our sick nature. This real self is what we were created to be, and sobriety brought its discovery.

I’ll go about my affairs today knowing that my real self is what God wants me to be. Being sober, I can now find answers and opportunities that were beyond my reach when I was still drinking. 
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Keep It Simple #essentialsofrec


Things do not change, we do.

—Henry David Thoreau

There are still as many bars as there were when we were drinking. There are still lots of drugs around. The world hasn’t changed. What’s changed is that we now live a different way of life.

We’ve learned that, for us, alcohol and other drugs are poison.

For us, there are now two worlds: the world we left behind, and our new world of recovery. In our old world, we’d try to get everyone else to change. We had the right. In our new world, we look for ways we can change for the better. In our new life, we’re willing to change.

Prayer for the Day: I pray that I may be like a mighty river, always changing.

Action for the Day: I will list changes I need to make in my new life.
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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation #essentialsofrec


PURPOSE

“I have never doubted that God created man for great purposes . . . ”

– Preston Bradley

I am special today. I know that there is a purpose for my life and that it is essentially good and creative. I know that beauty is not just in things that I can see . . . beauty is also in me. Today I affirm my great purpose in this world . . . to be the best that I can be.

For too many years I gave my God-given power away; I gave it to alcohol, I gave it to people, I gave it to a belief system that did not make sense to me. Today I am discovering the power that God has given to me, and I feel good about myself. Today I reclaim my divinity.

Creator of this wonderful universe, make me an instrument of Your peace. 
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A Day At A Time #essentialsofrec

Reflection For The Day

Taking a long hard look at those defects I’m unwilling or reluctant to give up, I ought to rub out the rigid lines I’ve drawn.  Perhaps, in some cases, I’ll then be able to say, “well, this one I can’t give up yet…”  The one thing I shouldn’t say:  “This one I’ll never give up, “  The minute we say, “no, never,” our minds close against the grace of God.  Such rebelliousness,l as we have seen in the experiences of others, may turn out to be fatal.  Instead, we should abandon limited objectives and begin to move toward God’s will for us.  Am I learning never to say “never…”?

Today I Pray

May God remove any blocks of rebellion which make me bulk at changing my undesirable qualities.  Out of my delusion that I am “unique” and “special” and somehow safe from consequences, I confess that God that I have defied the natural laws of health sanity, along with Divine laws of human kindness.  May God drain away the defiance which is such a protected symptom of my addiction.

Today I Will Remember

Defiance is an offspring of delusion.
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One Day At A Time #essentialsofrec


PERFECTION

“People throw away what they could have by insisting on perfection, which they cannot have, and looking for it where they will never find it.”

Edith Schaeffer

Time and time again I have felt like I was suspended from two ropes, being flogged for my imperfections. The tragic fact of that vision was that I was the person wielding the whip!

Before my heart and mind were opened by the Twelve Steps and Traditions, I sought perfection in everything I attempted. A simple letter would be written and rewritten until I was satisfied that perfection had been achieved and the letter could be sent. Frequently the goal was not reached and I would abandon the project in frustration and bitter disappointment with myself. Events that I organized had to be executed with the utmost precision. If, God forbid, a mistake was made, I would berate myself for days until sheer mental and emotional exhaustion prevailed.

Ironically, I never sought perfection in others and accepted that it was okay for them to be human. However, seeking perfection from myself became an obsession tangled with the search for self-acceptance. Needless to say, a rainbow cannot be seen through closed eyes, and I never found that which I sought. Through the teachings of the Twelve Steps I have come to appreciate that the beauty within myself is that I am not perfect. I can grow through my mistakes, and in my imperfections I can find serenity and release from the struggle.

One Day at a Time …
I will accept that I am perfectly imperfect.

~ Sue G. 
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Elder’s Meditation of the Day #essentialsofrec



“We begin by letting the Powers know that we are willing to be their servants to others.”

–Fools Crow, LAKOTA

There are certain prayers or actions we can take that will call the Powers. The powers can only work through people. The Powers are always waiting to express themselves through people that are ready. every person born is born with a purpose. They have a song to sing. They have a mission to accomplish. Every true purpose will always be about serving the Creator and helping others. When we let the Powers know that we are ready to serve the people, the Powers get excited because they can now do things to help the people and make things better for them. The decision is powerful because it turns an idea into action.Great Spirit, the greatest joy or feeling that I have ever experienced is when you are using me to help the people, the feeling of giving, the feeling of being your channel. Today, let me have that feeling of giving. Use me as You will. 
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Today’s Gift #essentialsofrec



If you have butterflies in your stomach ask them into your heart.
—Cooper Edens

We’ve all had butterflies in our stomachs. It happens on the first day of school or the first day on a new job. It happens most anytime we try something new or risky. These butterflies are nervous and fluttery and sometimes we wish we could just go back to bed.

But the best thing we can do, and sometimes the only thing, is go right ahead and walk into that new situation with head held high. We will probably feel awkward at first, but that is natural and it will pass.

Our nervousness can change into excitement and joy for what we are doing. We can begin to feel proud when we walk through our fear. It is a true accomplishment when we don’t let our fear stop us – when, instead, we let the butterfly in our hearts unfold.

When I have the butterflies today, will I enjoy their beauty? 
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Daily Zen #essentialsofrec



Patch-robed monks make
Their thinking dry and cool
And rest from the remnants of
Conditioning.
Persistently brush up and sharpen
This bit of the field.
Spiritual and bright,
Vast and lustrous,
Illuminating fully what is
Before you, directly attain
The shining light and clarity
That cannot attach to a single
Defilement.

– Hongzhi Zhengjue (1091-1157) 
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Friday, 26 August 2016

Random Big Book Alcoholics Anonymous #essentialsofrecovery


Big Book
Random Big Book Alcoholics Anonymous


SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCE

The terms "spiritual experience" and "spiritual awakening" are used many times in this book which, upon careful reading, shows that the personality change sufficient to bring about recovery from alcoholism has manifested itself among us in many different forms.

Yet it is true that our first printing gave many readers the impression that these personality changes, or religious experiences, must be in the nature of sudden and spectacular upheavals. Happily for everyone, this conclusion is erroneous. 
In the first few chapters a number of sudden revolutionary changes are described. Though it was not our intention to create such an impression, many alcoholics have nevertheless concluded that in order to recover they must acquire an immediate and overwhelming "God-consciousness" followed at once by a vast change in feeling and outlook.

Among our rapidly growing membership of thousands of alcoholics such transformations, though frequent, are by no means the rule. Most of our experiences are what psychologist William James calls the "educational variety" because they develop slowly over a period of time. Quite often friends of the newcomer are aware of the difference long before he is himself. He finally realizes that he has undergone a profound alteration in his reaction to life; that such a change could hardly have been brought about by himself alone. What often takes place in a few months could seldom have been accomplished by years of self discipline. With few exceptions our members find they have tapped an unsuspected inner resource which they presently identify with their own conception of a Power greater than themselves. 

Most of us think this awareness of a Power greater than ourselves is the essence of spiritual experience. Our more religious members call it "God-consciousness." 
Most emphatically we wish to say that any alcoholic capable of honestly facing his problems in the light of our experience can recover, provided he does not close his mind to all spiritual concepts. He can only be defeated by an attitude of intolerance or belligerent denial. 

We find that no one need have difficulty with the spirituality of the program. Willingness, honesty and open mindedness are the essentials of recovery. But these are indispensable. 

"There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance -- 
that principle is contempt prior to investigation." 

- HERBERT SPENCER  
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Liberation...


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