Sunday, 31 December 2017

One Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery

Life Is Worth Living


“These, then, are my last words to you: Be not afraid of life. Believe that life is worth living. and your belief will help create the fact.

—William James (1842 ~ 1910)

I have lived my life as a compulsive eater and I have known many other compulsive eaters. I believe I can say unequivocally that life is much more difficult in so many ways for us than for many others. I denied that what I suffered from was a disease; yet I watched as over the years it robbed me of so many things others take for granted. Most of us will acknowledge early on that the manifestations of compulsive eating affects us spiritually, emotionally and physically. Volumes have been written about each of these so most reading this know the devastation it causes. When I began to inventory my life and saw how much the quality of it had suffered, it saddened me greatly.

I believe one of the most difficult ways the disease of COE, or any compulsive illness, affects us is the way society looks upon us. Because I have experienced life both ways, I know how behavior and attitudes change in interacting with a COE vs a non-COE. We wear our disease on the outside … but the extensive damage is far more wide-spread than just the physical. The disease wrecks havoc in every area of our lives as we silently go about our life doing the things expected of us. We don’t dare scapegoat the disease. After all, this is not a cancer … or heart disease. Yet it can be just as serious.

Many decades ago, a group of alcoholics gathered and, as a result, life began to change for those of us who struggled with the disease. When I reached the point in my life that I could actually acknowledgement that compulsive eating was affecting it and that I had done everything possible to stop it and couldn’t, it was one of the most freeing moments I’ve ever experienced. I learned that I was as powerless over this as I would have been suffering a heart attack. I also learned that I couldn’t handle it alone. I learned that there were twelve steps that were absolutely necessary if I were to survive emotionally and, perhaps even physically.

I went from fighting the disease to acknowledging it. Because of the Steps I learned that there were tens of thousands of others exactly like me and that we all spoke the same beautiful language. I learned not to be afraid of life … and that, despite this despicable disease, life is truly worth living. I was told to “act as if” and by doing this it became no longer an act.

One day at a time …

I affirm that my life is worth living. One day at a time, I affirm that I will not be afraid of anything that makes me feel otherwise.

~ Mari 
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Daily Dose OF Emmet Fox #essentialsofrecovery


THE MAGIC OF TITHING


The practice of tithing has been a lifelong habit with many. They think of their own money as amounting to 90 percent of whatever their net income happens to be and they set aside the 10 percent that belongs to God. The unfailing result is that such people are always free from financial difficulties. Though they may have other problems, they ever remain in want.

Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in thine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it (Malachi 3:10).

And all the tithe of the land, whether the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord’s: it is holy unto the Lord (Leviticus 27:30).

Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the first-fruits of thine increase: So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine (Proverbs 3:9,10).

Jacob, after he had received the vision which told him that there is a mystical ladder reaching from earth to heaven—the ladder of scientific prayer and righteous activity—decided there and then to adopt the practice of tithing, realizing that God will be with me, and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, so that I come again to my father’s house in peace… (Genesis 28:20-21).

© 1931 by Emmet Fox
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DAILY REFLECTIONS #essentialsofrecovery

DAILY RESOLUTIONS

The idea of “twenty-four-hour living” applies primarily to the emotional life of the individual. Emotionally speaking, we must not live in yesterday, nor in tomorrow.

~ AS BILL SEES IT, p. 284 ~

A New Year: 12 months, 52 weeks, 365 days, 8,760 hours, 525,600 minutes—a time to consider directions, goals, and actions. I must make some plans to live a normal life, but also I must live emotionally within a twenty-four-hour frame, for if I do, I don’t have to make New Year’s resolutions! I can make every day a New Year’s day! I can decide, “Today I will do this . . . Today I will do that.” Each day I can measure my life by trying to do a little better, by deciding to follow God’s will and by making an effort to put the principles of our A.A. program into action.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc
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Just For Today #essentialsofrecovery


Being Of Service

“Working with others is only the beginning of service work.”

—Basic Text, p. 56

We’re in recovery now. Through living the program, we’ve attained some stability in our lives. Our faith in a Higher Power has grown. Our individual spiritual awakening is progressing comfortably. So now what? Do we simply sit still and enjoy? Of course not. We find a way to be of service.

We tend to think of service only in terms of committee service or holding a position at some level, but service goes far beyond this understanding. In fact, we can find opportunities to be of service in nearly every area of our lives. Our jobs are a form of service to our communities, no matter what our occupation. The work we do in our homes serves our families. Perhaps we do volunteer work in our communities.

What a difference our service efforts make! If we doubt this, we can just imagine what the world would be like if no one bothered to be of service to others. Our work serves humanity. The message we carry goes beyond the rooms of recovery, affecting everything we do.

Just for today: I will look for opportunities to be of service in everything I do.
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Twenty-Four Hours A Day #essentialsofrecovery

A.A. Thought For The Day

I shall be loyal in my attendance, generous in my giving, kind in my criticism, creative in my suggestions, loving in my attitudes. I shall give A.A. my interest, my enthusiasm, my devotion, and most of all, myself. The Lord’s Prayer has become part of my A.A. thoughts for each day: “Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” Have I given myself?

Meditation For The Day


As we look back over the year just gone, it has been a good year to the extent that we have put good thoughts, good words, and good deeds into it. None of what we have thought, said, or done need be wasted. Both the good and the bad experiences can be profited by. In a sense, the past is not entirely gone. The result of it, for good or evil, is with us at the present moment. We can only learn by experience and none of our experience is completely wasted. We can humbly thank God for the good things of the year that has gone.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may carry good things into the year ahead. I pray that I may carry on with faith, with prayer, and with hope.
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As Bill Sees It #essentialsofrecovery


Wider Understanding, p.255


To reach more alcoholics, understanding of A.A. and public good will towards A.A. must go on growing everywhere. We need to be on still better terms with medicine, courts, prisons, mental hospitals, and all enterprises in the alcoholism field. We need the increasing good will of editors, writers, television and radio channels. These publicity outlets need to be opened ever wider.

Nothing matters more to A.A.’s future welfare than the manner in which we use the colossus of modern communication. Used unselfishly and well, it can produce results surpassing our present imagination. Should we handle this great instrument badly, we shall be shattered by the ego manifestations of our own people. Against this peril, A.A. members’ anonymity before the general public is our shield and our buckler.

1. Twelve Concepts, p.51
2. Grapevine, November 1960 
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Walk In Dry Places #essentialsofrecovery


Has it been a Year of Growth?
Growth


As any year draws to a close, we should reflect on how we have grown in sobriety. We should also identify changes during the year that enabled us to overcome bad habits and to move closer to better patterns of living.

Though we never are guaranteed favorable outcomes, we should always remember that sobriety is its own reward. We want a full life of course, but it must begin with a decision to seek and to maintain sobriety at all costs.

We find that with sobriety, lots of other problems seem to solve themselves. Even if they don’t we have the tools to move forward and to achieve goals that always eluded us while we were drinking. Every year in sobriety is a year of growth.

I’ll be conscious today of recent improvements I’ve made in my life and all my affairs. With sobriety, these improvements will go on for a lifetime.
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Keep It Simple #essentialsofrecovery


“May you live all the days of your life.”

—Jonathan Swift.

Tonight, at midnight, a New Year will begin. None of us know what the New Year will hold. But we can trust ourselves to hold on to the spirit of recovery as we go through the year. As a New Year is about to begin, we can rejoice in our new way of life. We can give our will and our life to our HP. By doing these things, we’ll be ready for the New Year.

PRAYER: Higher Power, I pray that I’ll start the New Year safe in Your loving arms. I pray that I’ll keep working my program.

ACTION: Tonight, at midnight, I’ll say the Serenity Prayer. I will think of all the others who have read this meditation book and who will join me in this prayer. We are a recovering community.

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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation #essentialsofrecovery

CHANGE

“It is not necessary to get away from human nature but to alter its inner attitude of heart and mind.”

~ J. F. Newton

An understanding of sobriety and serenity that has proved helpful to me is that we are not only changing but involved in change. We determine the results of the change.

I can change for good or bad. I can stay sober or drink. I can be cheerful and creative or negative and destructive. My attitude determines the results of my changing life.

Spirituality has been given, but it also needs to be nurtured. I need to surround myself with loving and honest people if I am to allow my spirituality to grow in my life. My continued willingness is essential to my sobriety and serenity.

Thank You for making me with a mind and heart that together create the action.
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A Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery

Reflection For The Day

God grant me the SERENITY to accept the things I cannot change; COURAGE to change the things I can; and WISDOM to know the difference—living one day at a time; enjoying one moment at a time; accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it: Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His will; that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with him forever in the next. Amen.

Today I Pray

May I look back at this past year as a good one, in that nothing I did or said was wasted. No experience—however insignificant it may have seemed—was worthless. Hurt gave me the capacity to feel happiness; bad times made me appreciate the good ones; what I regarded was my weaknesses became my greatest strengths. I thank God for a year of growing.

Today I will Remember

Hope is my “balance brought forward”—into a new year’s ledger.
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Elder’s Meditation of the Day #essentialsofrecovery


“They must give themselves to Wakan’ Tanka and live a spiritual life. They will have the peace that frees them from fear.”

—Frank Fools Crow, LAKOTA


There are two wills available for us: self will and God’s will. Our choice is: figure it out ourselves, or have the Creator involved in our lives. If we are honest with ourselves and look at past experiences, what are our lives like when we try to figure it out ourselves? Is there fear, confusion, frustration, anger, attacking others, conflict, fault finding, manipulation, teasing others, belittling others or devaluation? If these things are present, they indicate that we are choosing self will. What is it like if we turn our will over to the Creator? What are the results if we ask the Great Spirit to guide our life? Examples are: freedom, choices, consequences, love forgiveness, helping others, happiness, joy, solutions, and peace. Which will I choose today, self will or God’s will?

Creator, I know what my choice is. I want You to direct my life. I want You to direct my thinking. You are the Grandfather. You know what I need even before I do. Today I ask You to tell me what I can do for You today. Tell me in a way I can understand and I will be happy to do it.
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Today’s Gift #essentialsofrecovery

“Finish each day and be done with it. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well.”—Ralph Waldo Emerson


Two of the most useless phrases in the English language are “what if” and “if only.” We waste so much time and energy thinking about what we might have done and wishing we had acted or reacted differently. We imagine how things might have turned out “if only . . .”

All of us make mistakes. To go back and wonder and wish about our yesterdays prevents us from living fully today. Each day is a fresh chance; a new beginning. We can only squeeze what we can out of the moment and let the drops fall where they may. Some will evaporate and some will form rainbows.

Can I forget about yesterday and start a fresh new day?
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The Eye Opener #Essentialsofrecovery

Every man at some time arrives at a place where the course of his entire future rests upon a decision. Judas was one day a saint and the next the betrayer of the Lord.

We members of AA also had our moment of great decision. Many more days of decision will probably be our lot, but by the Grace of God and our new-found sobriety, we can meet any situation by reliance on God’s Will rather than our own.

Copyright Hazelden Foundation
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Daily Tao /365 - Continuation

Upon completion comes fulfillment.
With fulfillment comes liberation.
Liberation allows you to go on.
Even death is not a true ending.
Life is infinite continuation.

Always finish what you start. That alone is discipline and wisdom enough. If you can follow that rule, then you will be superior to most people.
When you come to the end of a cycle, a new one will begin. You might say that completion actually begins somewhere in the middle of a cycle and that new beginnings are engendered out of previous actions.

Completing a cycle means fulfillment. It means that you have achieved self-knowledge, discipline, and a new way of understanding yourself and the world around you. You cannot stop there, of course. New horizons are always there. But you can reach out for those new vistas with fresh assurance and wisdom.

With each turn of the wheel you go further. With each turn of the wheel you free yourself from the mire of ignorance. With each turn of the wheel comes continuation.

Turn the wheel of your life. Make complete revolutions. Celebrate every turning. And persevere with joy. 
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Saturday, 30 December 2017

Daily Dose Of Emmet Fox #essentialsofrecovery

Prayer will enable you, sooner or later, to get yourself, or anyone else, out of any difficulty on the face of the earth. It is the Golden Key to harmony and happiness. To those who have no acquaintance with the mightiest power in existence, this may appear to be a rash claim, but it needs only a fair trial to prove that, without a shadow of doubt, it is a just one. You need take no one's word for it, and you should not. Simply try it for yourself, and see.

~Emmet Fox
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DAILY REFLECTIONS #essentialsofrecovery

ANONYMITY

Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.

~ ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 564 

Tradition Twelve became important early in my sobriety and, along with the Twelve Steps, it continues to be a must in my recovery. I became aware after I joined the Fellowship that I had personality problems, so that when I first heard it, the Tradition’s message was very clear: there exists an immediate way for me to face, with others, my alcoholism and attendant anger, defensiveness, offensiveness. I saw Tradition Twelve as being a great ego- deflator; it relieved my anger and gave me a chance to utilize the principles of the program. All of the Steps, and this particular Tradition, have guided me over decades of continuous sobriety. I am grateful to those who were here when I needed them.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc
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Twenty-Four Hours A Day #essentialsofrecovery

A.A. Thought For The Day

To the extent that I fail in my responsibilities, A.A. fails. To the extent that I succeed, A.A. succeeds. Every failure of mine will set back A.A. work to that extent. Every success of mine will put A.A. ahead to that extent. I shall not wait to be drafted for service to others, but I shall volunteer. I shall accept every opportunity to work for A.A. as a challenge, and I shall do my best to accept every challenge and perform my task as best I can. Will I accept every challenge gladly?

Meditation For The Day

People are always failures in the deepest sense when they seek to live without God’s sustaining power. Many people try to be self-sufficient and seek selfish pleasure and find that it does not work too well. No matter how much material wealth they acquire, no matter how much fame and material power, the time of disillusionment and futility usually comes. Death is ahead, and they cannot take any material thing with them when they go. What does it matter if I have gained the whole world, but lost my own soul?

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I will not come empty to the end of my life. I pray that I may so live that I will not be afraid to die.
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As Bill Sees It #essentialsofrecovery

We Cannot Stand Still, p. 25

In the first days of A.A., I wasn't much bothered about the areas of life in which I was standing still. There was always the alibi: “After all,” I said to myself, “I’m far too busy with much more important matters.” That was my near perfect prescription for comfort and complacency.

<< << << >> >> >>

How many of us would presume to declare, “Well, I'm sober and I’m happy. What more can I want, or do? I’m fine the way I am.” We know that the price of such self-satisfaction is an inevitable backslide, punctuated at some point by a very rude awakening. We have to grow or else deteriorate. For us, the status quo can only be today, never for tomorrow. Change we must; we cannot stand still.

1. Grapevine, June 1961
2. Grapevine, February 1961 
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Walk In Dry Places #essentialsofrecovery.

Maturity means principles
Right Action



A principle is sometimes defined as a fundamental guide to action. The more mature we become, the more likely it is that we’ll work from principles rather than blind feelings.

The principles outlined in the Twelve Steps are good guide for mature living. They call for honesty in motive, fair and considerate treatment of others, and reliance on our Higher Power throughout each day.

As we continue on such a path, we will outgrow the childish selfishness and reactions that were so destructive in our old lives. We will be viewed by others as mature, responsible, reliable people.

We also grow into maturity by acting according to sound principles even when we don’t always feel like it. Whatever our feelings might be at any given moment, we can choose actions that are sound and constructive.

Whatever my feelings might be from moment to moment, I”ll act according to the best principles today. I know this is a part of growing up.
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Keep It Simple #essentialsofrecovery



—AA slogan

Addiction messed up our thinking. We know that from taking Step One. We forgot things. We had blackouts. We made excuses, and we even started to believe them. We were mixed up. We couldn’t figure things out. We decided to get high and forget about it. Now our minds are clear. We can keep thinking clearly if we work our program and Keep It Simple. Don’t drink or use other drugs. Go to meetings. Work the Steps. Be yourself. Ask for help. Trust your Higher Power. Two thoughts will always mess us up if we let them in. They are “Yes, but…” and “What if?” Don’t let them in. Keep It Simple.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, thanks for recovery. Help me stay sober and clean today.

Action for the Day: Today, I’ll take one thing at a time and Keep It Simple.
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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation #essentialsofrecovery

BALANCE

“A society that gives to one class all the opportunities for leisure, and to another class all the burdens of work, dooms both classes to spiritual sterility.”

— Lewis Mumford

Spirituality brings with it balance. In order to be relaxed, healthy and alive, I need both work and leisure. For me I need to remember it is okay to take a day off; to stay in and relax is not a waste; play time is creative time!

I was not only compulsive around alcohol and people but I was also obsessive about work. I was and am a work-aholic. I need to remember to H.A.L.T.: Don’t get too Hungry. Don’t get too Angry. Don’t get too Lonely. Don’t get too Tired.

Work for me can be a form of escape. In leisure I have the opportunity to meet with myself.

Go on enjoy yourself, with yourself!

You, who made me a laborer in the vineyard, also expected me to sit and enjoy it.
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A Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery

Reflection For The Day

My life before coming to 'The Program' was not unlike the lives of so many of us who were cruelly buffeted and tormented by the power of our addictions. For years, I had been sick and tired. When I became sick and tired of being sick and tired, I finally surrendered and came to The Program. Now I realize that I had been helped all along by a Higher Power; it was He, indeed, who allowed me to live so that I could eventually find a new way of life. Since my awakening, have I found a measure of serenity previously unknown in my life.

Today I Pray

May I realize that my Higher Power has not suddenly come into my life like a stranger opening a door when I knocked. The Power has been there all along, if I will just remember how many brushes with disaster I have survived by a fraction of time or distance. Now that I have come to know my Higher Power better, I realize that I must have been saved from something — for helping others like me.

Today I Will Remember

I am grateful to be alive and recovering.
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One Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery

WILLINGNESS


Yet we finally did make choices that brought about our recovery. We came to believe that alone we were powerless over [food]. This was surely a choice, and a most difficult one. We came to believe that a Higher Power could restore us to sanity when we became willing to practice [program’s] twelve steps. In short, we chose to ‘become willing,’ and no better choice did we ever make.”
–from “As Bill Sees It”

I floundered in program for a good while. I was not willing to do the Fourth Step; it scared me. Then I did it, and recovery continued.

I floundered in program again. I was not willing to do the extra work I knew I would have to do to stay in the program. I was scared of being a sponsor, so I left. The disease gradually took me over.

I came back to program. This time I was willing. No longer did the phrase “going to any lengths” scare me. I knew I needed to do whatever it took. The disease had beaten me down to where I had no choice if I wanted to recover. I took the steps … all the steps. I became a sponsor. I also discovered that abstinence is only the beginning of recovery – that life is joyful and free. It all began with willingness on my part. I didn’t have the power to change my life, but my Higher Power was able to change it once I became willing to follow the Twelve Steps to the best of my ability.

One Day at a Time . . .

I will ask for and receive the willingness to work this program.

~ Julie ~ 
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Elder’s Meditation of the Day #essentialsofrecovery

Always remember.that the Great Mystery is good; evil can come only from ourselves!”

–Grandmother of Charles Eastman. SANTEE SIOUX

The Great Mystery is love, good and principle. He is a guiding Father. He doesn’t play games. He knows only how to love. Sometimes, when things go wrong, we blame Him or others. Usually, if we are honest, we can see how decisions or things done in the past put us in a position to be hurt. It comes back to us. When this happens, it is not something the Creator caused, but something we, ourselves caused. Most of our problems are of our own making. When this happens, we should correct what we’ve done, ask the Great Spirit for forgiveness and pray for guidance in the future.

My Creator, bless me with Your good.
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The Eye Opener #essentialsofrecovery


If man was created by God in the image of God and did not possess human frailties, he would be God. All men would then be perfect and Heaven would exist here on earth. There would be no logical reason for it to operate simply as a branch of Heaven.

With our limited understanding of God’s purpose, we must suppose that man was intended from the very first to work out his own evolution. The reason this process has required so many centuries has been man’s persistence in the exercise of his puny little will as opposed to the Will of God. That we are less than God is due to our freedom of choice between being one with God and our attempt to play God.


© Copyright Hazelden Foundation


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Today’s Gift #essentialsofrecovery

Telling the truth is a pretty hard thing.

—Thomas Wolfe

Lying can be like sailing choppy waters. The more we lie, the higher the waves get, and the harder the sailing. When we lie, we feel we’ve failed ourselves and others. We have to work hard to cover up our lies, and the fear of someone finding out is always with us.

If we ask God for courage to tell the truth, we can be like the sailboat on a clear and calm day. We can enjoy the small waves and the light warm breeze we’ve given ourselves. Honesty is a good habit, and is easy. With a little faith in our own worth, we can choose the calm waters’ honesty and apply our creativity to new, growth-oriented activities instead of covering up old mistakes.

How can I smooth my waters right now?
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Daily Tao / 364 - MORNING

Morning.

New day.

Joy of birth.



All we need is the morning. As long as there is sunrise, then there is the possibility that we can face all our misfortunes, celebrate all our blessings, and live all our endeavors as human beings. Spirituality is something that has become necessary in these troubled times. Yet it is inherently superfluous. We need it to remind ourselves, to bolster ourselves, to integrate ourselves, to fulfill ourselves. If we could simply acknowledge the mystery of night and the glory of morning, we would need neither civilization nor spirituality.

At its simplest, life begins with dawn. That is blessing enough. That is happiness enough. All else becomes fullness immeasurable. At dawn, kneel down and give thanks to this wonderful event. We may think mornings are so common that they are unworthy of veneration, but do you realize most places in the cosmos do not have mornings? This daily event is our supreme goodness.

Greet the dawn. That is your miracle to witness. That is the ultimate beauty. That is sacredness. That is your gift from heaven. That is your omen of prophesy. That is knowledge that life is not futile. That is enlightenment. That is your meaning in life. That is your directive. That is your comfort. That is the solemnity of duty. That is inspiration for compassion. That is the light of the ultimate.Morning.


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DAILY ZEN #essentialsofrecovery

As long as the followers of the way hold regular and frequent assemblies, they may be expected to prosper and not decline. As long as they meet in harmony, break up in harmony, and carry on their business in harmony, they may be expected to prosper and not decline.

-from the Mahaparinibbana Sutta, translated by Maurice Walshe  
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Friday, 29 December 2017

Daily Dose Of Emmet Fox #essentialsofrecovery

People sometimes accept the idea that a change of thought, plus turning to God in prayer, will transform their lives into harmony and freedom. The logic of this principle appeals to them, and they set to work upon it in earnest. Then, after a few days, they say, “Nothing has happened after all,” and they drop back into their old negative thinking.

That is extremely foolish. The results of many years of general negative thinking are seldom corrected in a few days. No one who goes upon a new physical diet or medical regimen expects to reap the advantages in so short a time. You must keep up the new way of thinking and refuse to be discouraged by seeming failures at first.

The right motive for adopting right thinking is that it is right, and that wrong thinking is wrong; and we should do right whether it seems to pay dividends or not. Of course, it does pay dividends—fabulous dividends—but it usually takes a little perseverance in the face of preliminary slowness.

And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart (Jeremiah 29:13).


© 1931 by Emmet Fox
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Daily Reflections #essentialsofrecovery

THE JOY OF LIVING

. . . . therefore the joy of good living is the theme of A.A.’s Twelfth Step.

TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 125

A.A. is a joyful program! Even so, I occasionally balk at taking the necessary steps to move ahead, and find myself resisting the very actions that could bring about the joy I want. I would not resist if those actions did not touch some vulnerable area of my life, an area that needs hope and fulfillment. Repeated exposure to joyfulness has a way of softening the hard, outer edges of my ego. Therein lies the power of joyfulness to help all members of A.A.
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Just For Today #essentialsofrecovery

Through Others’ Eyes


“When someone points out a shortcoming, our first reaction may be defensive….[But] if we truly want to be free, we will take a good look at input from fellow addicts.”

Basic Text pg. 35

At some point in our recovery, we come to the awkward realization that the way we see ourselves is not necessarily the way others do. We are probably neither as bad, as good, as beautiful, or as ugly as we think we are – but we are too close to ourselves to really tell for sure. That’s where our friends in the program come in, caring enough to share with us what they see when they look in our direction. They tell us the good things about ourselves we might not know – and they tell us the hard things, too, that we might not be able to see.

We may react defensively to such “help” and, in some cases, justly so. However, even malicious remarks about our supposed shortcomings can shed light on aspects of our recovery that we cannot see ourselves. Wherever a useful insight comes from, for whatever reason it is offered, we cannot afford to discount it.

We don’t need to wait for others to spontaneously offer their insight. When we spend time with our sponsor or other NA members we trust, we can make the first move and ask them to tell us what they see about particular areas of our lives to which we are blind. We want a broader vision of our life than just our own; we can have that vision by seeing ourselves through the eyes of others.

Just for today: I seek to see myself as I truly am. I will listen to what others say about me, and see myself through their eyes.
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Twenty-Four Hours A Day #essentialsofrecovery

A.A. Thought For The Day

Participating in the privileges of the movement, I shall share in the responsibilities, taking it upon myself to carry my fair share of the load, not grudgingly but joyfully. I am deeply grateful for the privileges I enjoy because of my membership in this great movement. They put an obligation upon me which I will not shirk. I will gladly carry my fair share of the burdens. Because of the joy of doing them, they will no longer be burdens, but opportunities. Will I accept every opportunity gladly?

Meditation For The Day

Work and prayer are the two forces which are gradually making a better world. We must work for the betterment of ourselves and our fellow men. Faith without works is dead. But all work with people should be based on prayer. If we say a little prayer before we speak or try to help, it will make us more effective. Prayer is the force behind the work. Prayer is based on faith that God is working with us and through us. We can believe that nothing is impossible in human relationships, if we depend on the help of God.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that my life may be balanced between prayer and work. I pray that I may not work without prayer or pray without work.
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As Bill Sees It #essentialsofrecovery

Unlimited Choice, p. 201

Any number of alcoholics are bedeviled by the dire conviction that if they ever go near A.A. they will be pressured to conform to some particular brand of faith or theology.

They just don’t realize that faith is never an imperative for A.A. membership. That sobriety can be achieved with an easily acceptable minimum of it, and that our concepts of a Higher Power and God–as we understand Him–afford everyone a nearly unlimited choice of spiritual belief and action.


********************************

In talking to a prospect, stress the spiritual feature freely. If the man be agnostic or atheist, make it emphatic that he does not have to agree with your conception of God. He can choose any conception he likes, provided it makes sense to him.

The main thing is that he is willing to believe in a Power greater than himself and that he live by spiritual principles.

1. Grapevine, April 1961
2. Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 93


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Walk In Dry Places #essentialsofrecovery

Mending the past
No Regrets of the Past


“The past is best mended by living so fully today that its errors have no place in our lives.” These words by an AA member suggest an approach for healing from the past.

All of us would benefit to use today’s knowledge to deal with situations we mishandled in the past. But we must remember that whatever mistakes we made, we had available only the knowledge and resources we possessed the, and we may have done about as well as we possibly could at this time.

We should also remember that active alcoholism is a crippling and ugly disease with many terrible consequences. It’s not surprising that bad things happened to others and us when we were drinking. We can only be grateful that we are now recovering and that matters are better, not worse, than they once were.

I’ll live fully today, allowing no thoughts of regret from my past to intrude.
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Keep It Simple #essentialsofrecovery

Many people are living in an emotional jail without recognizing it.

–Virginia Satir.

Our disease was our jail. We felt so bad that we were sure we must have done something awful. But we didn’t cause our disease. We have done nothing to deserve our disease. We aren’t responsible for the fact that we have a disease. But we ARE responsible for our recovery. We have been granted probation. The terms of our probation are simple: don’t drink or use other drugs, and work the Steps. If we follow these simple rules, we’ll be free. And it will be clear to us that only a Power greater than ourselves could give us this freedom.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, help me to stay free. For this next twenty-four – hour period, take from me any urge to drink or use other drugs. With Your help, I’ll be free.

Action for the Day: Today, I’ll think about my disease. I am not morally weak. I have a dangerous illness. What can keep me free from my disease?
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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation #essentialsofrecovery

MADNESS

“The madman who knows that he is mad is close to sanity.”

 Juan Ruiz de Alarcon

An alcoholic who continues to drink is committing suicide. An addict who continues to use is committing suicide. An overeater who continues to eat compulsively and destructively is committing suicide. Madness.

It is like a man standing in the town square stabbing himself with a knife and asking the passer-by, “Why am I bleeding?”

Today I accept my past destructive behavior and try to change it on a daily basis. Spirituality is loving yourself enough to “see” the writing on the wall and do something about it. Change is sanity for the madman!

God, You seem to have given me a dose of insanity. Let me use it to Your glory.

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A Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery

Reflection For The Day

The success of The Program, I've been taught, lies in large measure in the readiness and willingness of its members to go to any lengths to help others tyrannized by their addictions. If my readiness and willingness cools, then I stand in danger of losing all that I’ve gained. I must never become unwilling to give away what I have, for only by so doing will I be privileged to keep it. Do I take to heart the saying, “Out of self into God into others…”?

Today I Pray

May I never be too busy to answer a fellow addict’s call for help. May I never become so wound up in my pursuits that I forget that my own continuing recovery depends on that helping — a half-hour or so on the telephone, a call in person, a lunch date, whatever the situation calls for. May I know what my priorities must be.
Today I Will Remember

Helping helps me.
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One Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery

~GRATITUDE FOR ADVERSITY ~


He was my greatest teacher. He taught me patience.

–The Dalai Lama on Mao Tse Tung

Whenever I feel downtrodden or disappointed by the hand that life has dealt me, I often think of this quote. It moves me beyond speech. Here was a man who had lost his homeland to communist China, yet he still had a good thing to say about the man who started it all. It forces me to come to a realization that what has happened to me is peanuts!

Too often I am caught up with feeling sorry for myself because of my disease, while ignoring the fact that I am so fortunate to have found recovery. Sometimes I feel so poor, yet I live in a large home with a wonderful spouse and delightful pets. I have a car, and enough food to eat every day. I have the luxury of obtaining my degree. Most of all, though I often complain about how unfair it all is, I am even fortunate to have an eating disorder. Because it is through admitting I have a problem that I am beginning to taste recovery, and it is sweeter than any binge item. And it has taught me that it is through our adversities that we learn compassion and patience.

I have to realize that life just isn’t fair. If it were, how boring it would be! Nothing worthwhile is easy to obtain, and that includes recovery. What would it be worth if there was no effort going into it? Sometimes bad things happen, and they are unfortunate. But that’s the end of it. I cannot make things be the way I want them to be. I cannot change life. I must accept life on life’s terms, and learn the art of patience, so well demonstrated by the above quote. How fortunate that I have the opportunity to learn these precious skills in the safety and security of my own home, with my wonderful friends, spouse, and my program family!

One Day at a Time . . .

I will avoid dwelling on the misery that accompanies hardship. I will develop the willingness to be grateful for the opportunity for me to learn compassion and patience.

Claire
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Elder’s Meditation of the Day #essentialsofrecovery


“What you see with your eyes shut is what counts.”

–Lame Deer, LAKOTA

Another whole world opens up when we close our eyes and calm our mind. Be still and know; be still and hear; be still and see; be still and feel. Inside every person is a still, small voice. Sometime it is necessary to close our eyes to shut down our perception in order to see. Try this occasionally; when you are talking to your child or spouse, close your eyes and listen to them. Listen to the tone of their voice; listen to their excitement; listen to their pain-listen.

Great Spirit, today, let me hear only what really counts.
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The Eye Opener #essentialsofrecovery

Is someone happier, better or braver because of some act of yours today? If you can answer yes to any or all of them, then you can feel rather confident that you are progressing in the AA way of living.

If you can’t – then you are not giving it the old College try and you are cheating yourself out of a lot of happiness that could have been yours.

 ©  Copyright Hazelden Foundation

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DAILY TAO / 363 - NIGHT #essentialsofrecovery

In night's vast ocean,
Sun, moon, and earth align,
Pulling the earth out of roundness
And making tides rage.
Such is the power of night.

Night. You are mother of all. You existed before all. You are the background, the fabric, the whole underpinning of the universe.
In you is abstruse mystery, darker than the deepest water, blacker than the sleep of sleeps. You are an inconceivable fertility, a wild and uncontrollable realm from which strangeness and power and creativity and mutation and life spring. The miracle of birth comes from you. And the horror of death. That is why you both comfort and frighten us.

Stars and planets are scattered through you like luminescent pearls. You string them on your current effortlessly, and the pull of syzygy is so tremendous that the birth shape of the earth is pulled out of roundness, the seas exceed their brims, and the heads and hearts of all the creatures on this planet are made to pound and wonder in dazzled confusion.

When stars and novas burst, energy untold is unleashed -- explosions of such magnitude that human intellect and instruments could never hope to measure even if made superior by a hundredfold -- and yet these flames burn out, sputter, become mere dim coals in the supreme expanse that is night.

Night. You are mother without a mother. You are mystery and power and ruler of all time.



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DAILY ZEN #essentialsofrecovery



Monks, there are these three roots of evil. What three?

Lust is a root of evil, Hate is a root of evil, Delusion is a root of evil. These are the three roots of evil.

-Itivuttaka
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Thursday, 28 December 2017

DAILY DOSE OF EMMET FOX




WE ARE all supremely interested in one subject. There is one thing

that means more to us than all the other things in the world put together,

and that is our search for God and the understanding of His nature. The

aim of the metaphysical movement is to teach the practice of the presence

of God.

We practice the presence of God by seeing Him everywhere, in all

things and in all people, despite any appearances to the contrary. As we

look about the world with the eyes of the flesh, we see in-harmony, fear,

and all sorts of difficulties; but our leader Jesus Christ taught us, saying,

“Judge not according to appearance, but judge righteous judgment.” So

when we see the appearance of evil we look through it to the truth that lies

back of it. As soon as we see this truth, and see it spiritually, the

appearance changes, because this is a mental world. NOW most people do

not know this: they think it is a material world, and that is why humanity

has so many problems. After nineteen centuries of formal Christianity the

world is passing through desperate difficulties. But we know the Truth;

we do not judge by appearances. We know that we live in a mental world,

and to know that is the key to life.

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Daily Reflections #essentialsofrecovery


SUIT UP AND SHOW UP


In A.A. we aim not only for sobriety--we try again to become citizens of the world that we rejected, and of the world that once rejected us. This is the ultimate demonstration toward which Twelfth Step work is the first but not the final step.

AS BILL SEES IT, p. 21

The old line says, "Suit up and show up." That action is so important that I like to think of it as my motto. I can choose each day to suit up and show up, or not. Showing up at meetings starts me toward feeling a part of that meeting, for then I can do what I say I'll do at meetings. I can talk with newcomers, and I can share my experience; that's what credibility, honesty, and courtesy really are. Suiting up and showing up are the concrete actions I take in my ongoing return to normal living.

From the book Daily Reflections 
© Copyright 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. 
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Just for Today #essentialsofrecovery

Depression

"We are no longer fighting fear anger guilt, self-pity, or depression."

Basic Text pg. 26
As addicts, many of us experience depression from time to time. When we feel depressed, we may be tempted to isolate ourselves. However, if we do this, our depression may turn to despair. We can't afford to let depression lead us back to using.

Instead, we try to go about the routine of our lives. We make meeting attendance and contact with our sponsor top priorities. Sharing with others about our feelings may let us know we aren't the only ones who have been depressed in recovery. Working with a newcomer can work wonders for our own state of mind. And, most importantly, prayer and meditation can help us tap the power we need to survive depression.

We practice acceptance and remember that feelings like depression will unquestionably pass in time. Rather than struggle with our feelings, we accept them and ask for the strength to walk through them.
Just for today: I accept that my feelings of depression won't last forever. I will talk openly about my feelings with my sponsor or another person who understands.
pg. 378

From the book Just for Today
© Copyright 1991-2013 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services, Inc.
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Twenty-Four Hours a Day #essentialsofrecovery

Thought for the Day

AA may be human in its organization, but it is divine in its purpose. The purpose is to point me toward God and the good life. My feet have been set upon the right path. I feel it in the depths of my being. I am going in the right direction. The future can be safely left to God. Whatever the future holds, it cannot be too much for me to bear. I have the Divine Power with me to carry me through everything that may happen.

Am I pointed toward God and the good life?

Meditation for the Day

Although unseen, the Lord is always near to those who believe in Him and trust Him and depend on Him for the strength to meet the challenges of life. Although veiled from mortal sight, the Higher Power is always available to us whenever we humbly ask for it. The feeling that God is with us should not depend on any passing mood of ours; we should try to be always conscious of His power and love in the background of our lives.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may feel that God is not too far away to depend on for help. I pray that I may feel confident of His readiness to give me the power that I need.

Copyright Hazelden Foundation
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As Bill Sees It #essentialsofrecovery



Alone No More, p.252

Alcoholism was a lonely business, even though we were surrounded by people who loved us. But when our self-will had driven everybody away and our isolation became complete, we commenced to play the big shot in cheap barrooms. Failing even in this, we had to fare forth alone on the street to depend upon the charity of passers-by.

We were trying to find emotional security either by dominating or by being dependent upon others. Even when our fortunes had not totally ebbed, we nevertheless found ourselves alone in the world. We still vainly tried to be secure by some unhealthy sort of domination or dependence.

For those of us who were like that, A.A. has a very special meaning. In this Fellowship we begin to learn right relations with people who understand us; we don’t have to be alone any more.

12 & 12, pp. 116-117 
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Walk In Dry Places #essentialsofrecovery


Rehearing Rejection
Fortitude


The possibility of rejection exists with almost everything we do, if we are free to choose. We might not like rejection, but we want the same freedom to reject others. As freely choosing people, we need to turn down ideas or proposals we don’t like.

One thing we should never do, however, is rehearse rejections before they occur. If we do this, we may give up even before we have attempted what we hope to accomplish. In effect, we will be killing our hopes even before others have a chance to review them. This is always a ticket to failure.

Rejection is really a feedback mechanism that reports information we ought to have. It tells us either to change our approach or to seek acceptance elsewhere. It is not evidence that we’re completely unacceptable.

Our problem with any single rejection may be that it causes us to recall all the rejections we ever had. We can learn to see any rejection as a normal event that can be beneficial if we accept it properly.

I’ll not let any fear or visualization of rejection keep me from actions I ought to take today. I am an acceptable person, and there is a place for what I have to offer.
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Keep It Simple #essentialsofrecovery

If You Walk With Lame Men You'll soon Limp Yourself.

 --- Seaman McManus

Before recovery, we kept company with people who were as sick as us, or worse. We got angry and made fun of people who were trying to improve their lives. They scared us. They were like mirrors that reflected how spiritually lost we were becoming. Now we walk in the crowd we avoided. Now we have values. We have spiritual beliefs. Living up to these values and beliefs can be hard. We need to be around people who live by their values. In recovery, we learn that we need others. Remember, the first word in Step One is we. We need good people in our lives. We need friends who will not tell us what we want to hear, but what we are doing wrong.

Prayer for the Day: Sometimes I act like I need no one. Help me pick my friends wisely, for my life is at stake.

Action for the Day: Today, I'll pick one friend, and we'll talk about how we can better help each other.
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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation #essentialsofrecovery


 HUMOR

“Humor is an affirmation of dignity, a declaration of man’s superiority to all that befalls him.”

— Romain Gary

Today I laugh at myself. Today I need to laugh at myself in order to stay sane. Today I choose not to take myself too seriously.

When I tell jokes about the alcoholic, I am not belittling the person. I am making fun of the disease that nearly killed me. For me to live with the disease, I need to be able to laugh at the disease in this way I stop it from having power in my life.

Also I catch something of the symptoms of the disease in the jokes: the grandiosity, arrogance, manipulation, insanity, ego, selfishness and exaggeration. The joke allows me to face reality with a smile.

O God, thank You for the healing gift of humor. 
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A Day at a Time #essentiaklsofrecovery

Reflection for the Day

The Program, for me, is not a place nor a philosophy, but a highway to freedom. The highway leads me toward the goal of a “spiritual awakening as a result of these Steps.” The highway doesn’t get me to the goal as quickly as I sometimes wish, but I try to remember that God and I work from different timetables. But the goal is there, and I know that the Twelve Steps will help me reach it.

Have I come to the realization that I – and anyone – can now do what I had always thought impossible?

Today I Pray

As I live The Program, may I realize more and more that it is a means to an end rather than an end in itself. May I keep in mind that the kind of spirituality it calls for is never complete, but is the essence of change and growth, a drawing nearer to an ideal state. May I be wary of setting time-oriented goals for myself to measure my spiritual progress.

Today I Will Remember

Timetables are human inventions.

Copyright Hazelden Foundation
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ONE DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrecovery

MAINTENANCE

Another flaw in the human character is that everybody wants to build and nobody wants to do maintenance.

~ Kurt Vonnegut Jr. ~

With the help of our Higher Power, sponsors, and fellow Program members we have, completed the 12 Steps, studied the Big Book, hit regular meetings, worked the loops, given service, etc ….and finally were able to achieve abstinence and reach our recovery goals! Reaching our goals is one thing, but now we must maintain what we’ve struggled so hard to achieve. As COE’s, we never truly lose our addiction for food. Relapse is only a heartbeat away. Therefore, we must diligently strive to continue working the Program tools to guard this precious gift that we have earned.

One Day at a Time . . .

I will diligently maintain the recovery goals I have worked so long and hard to achieve.

~ Rob R. ~ 
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Elders meditation Of The Day #essentialsofrecovery


"I believe that being a medicine man, more than anything else, is a state of mind, a way of looking at and understanding this earth, a sense of what it is all about." 

--Lame Deer, LAKOTA


The Medicine Wheel explains different ways of looking at the world. The four directions are the East, the South, the West and the North. In the East is the view of the eagle-the eagle flies high and sees the earth from that point of view. The South his the direction of the mouse. Moving on the earth, the mouse will not see what the eagle sees. Both the eagle and the mouse see the truth. The West is the direction of the bear-the bear will see different from the mouse and the eagle. From the North comes the point of view of the bison. To be a Medicine Man you must journey through all points of view and develop the mind to see the interconnectedness of all four directions. This takes time, patience and an open mind. Eventually, you understand there is only love.

Great Spirit, today, allow my mind to stay open.
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Today’s Gift #essentialsofrecovery


I’ll walk where my own nature would be leading – It vexes me to choose another guide.

—Emily Bronte

We journey across many intersections in our lives. Some may point in two directions, while others lead off in several. Our choice of direction can be difficult, especially when our friends choose a road we know to be dangerous. When this happens, we can choose to go our own way without them. If they begin to tease and taunt us about our decisions, may we remember that they are as scared as we were about their friends’ reaction. We are not, after all, living for someone else. If we would be leaders, we can be assured that true leadership comes from following our own directions with confidence that it’s right for us, not from fear of losing others’ company.

We can let others live their own lives without us, if their direction is not for us. We can walk away with pride, satisfied in the knowledge that we refused to allow other people’s fears change our decisions.

How have I gone my own way recently? 
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The Eye Opener #essentialsofrecovery


It is very often easier to identify an alcoholic by his hang-over than by his drinking pattern. Alcoholics, for the most part, resemble the non-alcoholics when they have a load aboard, but in the morning, when the sweats and the shakes set in, then the alcoholic can be identified by the degree of his suffering. The alcoholic’s hang-over cannot be gotten rid of by 10:30 simply with aspirin or Bromos.

Copyright Hazelden Foundation 
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Daily Tao / 362 - EMPTINESS #essentialsofrecovery

Dust cannot gather
If there is no mirror there.

Some people have compared a pure soul to the unsullied brightness of a perfect mirror.
Others have retorted that if there is no mirror there in the first place, then there cannot be anything to be sullied. The soul is empty.

We should not think of our souls as discrete and separate from the rest of creation. We are indeed one with everything, so there is no need to think of our souls as isolated entities. Thus, it is the concept of the soul as separate being that is empty.

It is impossible to live in this world and not be sullied by it. The red dust will settle on you no matter how often you clean. It is good to strive for purity, but if you conceive of purity as a fight against the filth and the dust of the world, you doom yourself to obsession and futility. The only way to achieve actual purity is to realize your essential oneness with all things. If you are one with everything, then even filth is pure. For this to happen, you must transcend all distinctions in yourself, resolve all contradictions. With this erasure, the mirror-bright soul and the dust are all dissolved in a single purity. 
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Daily Zen #essentialsofrecovery

Every time a problem arises, the essential thing is to immediately become aware that the problem comes from our selfish mind, that it is created by self-cherishing thoughts. As long as you put the blame outside yourself, there can be no happiness.

-Lama Zopa Rinpoche, "Transforming Problems into Happiness" 
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Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Daily Dose Of Emmet Fox

 The Hidden Power 

Strange as it may seem to you, there exists a mystic power that is able to transform your life so 
thoroughly, so radically, so completely, that when the process is completed your own friends would hardly 
recognize you, and, in fact, you would scarcely be able to recognize yourself. You would sit down and ask 
yourself: "Can I really be the man or woman that I vaguely remember, who went about under my name six 
months or six years ago? Was I really that person? Could that person have possibly been me?" And the 
truth will be that while in one sense you are indeed the same person, yet in another sense you will be 
someone utterly different. 

This mystic but intensely real force can pick you up today, now, from the midst of failure, ruin, misery, 
despair - and in the twinkling of an eye, as Paul said, solve your problems, smooth out your difficulties, 
cut you free from any entanglements, and place you clear, safe, and happy upon the highroad of freedom 
and opportunity. 
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Daily Reflections #essentialsofrecovery


PROBLEM SOLVING

“Quite as important was the discovery that spiritual principles would solve all my problems.”

ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, p. 42

Through the recovery process described in the Big Book, I have come to realize that the same instructions that work on my alcoholism, work on much more. Whenever I am angry or frustrated, I consider the matter a manifestation of the main problem within me, alcoholism. As I “walk” through the Steps, my difficulty is usually dealt with long before I reach the Twelfth “suggestion,” and those difficulties that persist are remedied when I make an effort to carry the message to someone else. These principles do solve my problems! I have not encountered an exception, and I have been brought to a way of living which is satisfying and useful. 
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Just For Today #essentialsofrecovery


God Could Restore Us To Sanity

“The process of coming to believe restores us to sanity. The strength to move into action comes from this belief.”

Basic Text pg. 24

Now that we’ve finally admitted our insanity and seen examples of it in all its manifestations, we might be tempted to believe that we are doomed to repeat this behavior for the rest of our lives. Just as we thought that our active addiction was hopeless and we’d never get clean, we might now believe that our particular brand of insanity is hopeless.

Not so! We know that we owe our freedom from active addiction to the grace of a loving God. If our Higher Power can perform such a miracle as relieving our obsession to use drugs, surely this Power can also relieve our insanity in all its forms.

If we doubt this, all we have to do is think about the sanity that has already been restored to our lives. Maybe we’ve gotten carried away with our credit cards, but sanity returns when we admit defeat and cut them all up. Perhaps we’ve been feeling lonely and want to go visit our old using buddies. Going to visit our sponsor instead is a sane act.

The insanity of our addiction recedes into the past as we begin experiencing moments of sanity in our recovery. Our belief in a Power greater than ourselves grows as we begin to understand that even our brand of insanity is nothing in the face of this Power.

Just for today: I thank the God of my understanding for each sane act in my life, for I know they are indications of my restoration to sanity. 
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As Bill Sees It #essentialsofrecovery



Servant, Not Master, p.259

In A.A., we found that it did not matter too much what our material condition was, but it mattered greatly what our spiritual condition was. As we improved our spiritual outlook, money gradually became our servant and not our master. It became a means of exchanging love and services with those about us.

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One of A.A.’s Loners is an Australian sheepman who lives two thousand miles from the nearest town, where yearly he sells his wool. In order to be paid the best prices he has to get to town during a certain month. But when he heard that a big regional A.A. meeting was to be held at a later date when wool prices would have fallen, he gladly took heavy financial loss in order to make his journey then. That’s how much an A.A. meeting means to him.

1. 12 & 12, p.122
2. A.A. Comes Of Age, p.31 
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Keep It Simple #essentialsofrecovery



Reading is to the Mind, what exercise is to the body.

Good ideas are the seeds that start our growth. We hear things at meetings. We listen to our sponsor.

Maybe we listen to program tapes. And we read. Reading is special because we do it when we’re alone.

We read in quiet times, when we can think. We can read as fast or as slow as we want. We can mark special words and come back to them again and again. We’ll figure things out in our way, but we need help to get started. That’s why we read. It gives us good ideas to think about.

Prayer for the Day: Higher Power, speak to me through helpful readings and help me learn at my best pace.

Action for the Day: Reading is easier the more I do it. Today I’ll feel proud that I’ve read program ideas to get my mind thinking in a healthy way. 
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Father Leo’s Daily Meditation #essentialsofrecovery


LIES

“Sin has many tools, but a lie is the handle that fits them all.”

— Oliver Wendell Holmes

To lie is to rob life of meaning. In my addiction I was a liar, not just by what I said but by what I did, what I left unsaid and by my manipulation with half-truths. All lies shut out truth making us prisoners of fantasy and illusion. The world becomes what we want it to be rather than what it is and reality is lost. The liar is forced into the prison of loneliness, despair and isolation because nobody can know him, nobody can understand him. His language and communication are ego-centered. The liar is not living in the real world. He is living in his own world, with his own rules and definitions. The lies are the killing wounds, and they are self-inflicted.

Today I prefer the pain of truth to the passing satisfaction of the lie and the habit of telling the truth is growing in me!

God of Truth, may You ever be reflected in the life I seek to live. 
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A Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery


Reflection For The Day


I can attain real dignity, importance and individuality only by a dependence on a Power which is great and good, beyond anything I can imagine or understand. I will try my utmost to use this Power in making all my decisions. Even though my human mind cannot forecast what the outcome will be, I will try to be confident that whatever comes will be for my ultimate good. Just For Today, will I try to live this day only, and not tackle my whole life problem at once?

Today I Pray

May I make no decision, engineer no change in the course of my life stream, without calling upon my Higher Power May I have faith that God’s plan for me is better than any scheme I could devise for myself.

Today I Will Remember

God is the architect. I am the builder.
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A Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery


Reflection For The Day

“The central characteristics of the spiritual experience,” wrote AA co-founder Bill W., ‘is that it gives the recipient a new and better motivation out of all proportion to any process of discipline, belief, or faith. These experiences cannot make us whole at once; they are a rebirth to a fresh and certain opportunity.” Do I see my assets as God’s gifts, which have been in part matched by an increasing willingness on my part to find and do His will for me?

Today I Pray

I pray for the wholeness of purpose that can only come through spiritual experience. No amount of intellectual theory, pep-talking to myself, disciplined deprivation, “doing it for” somebody else can accomplish the same results. May I pray for spiritual enlightenment, not only in order to recover, but for itself.

Today I Will Remember

Total motivation through spiritual wholeness. 
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One Day At A Time #essentialsofrecovery


~ JOY~

Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment, and want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.

–George Bernard Shaw

For many years my life was filled with pain and I felt totally empty inside. I did what I had to do for my children and for the people around me, but with a heavy heart, and life seemed to be one endless day after the other. What had happened to all the dreams and hopes I had for a life filled with joy and happiness? Sometimes the pain got to be so great that life just didn’t seem to be worthwhile any more. At times I even contemplated ending my life. I have often heard it said that the opposite of pain is joy but in those dark days, I certainly couldn’t see that.

It is only in recovery that I see that the pain had a meaning, and it has brought me to a great appreciation of all the miracles in my life. I can appreciate the beauty in nature, and for the first time in a very long time my soul is filled with joy. When I listen to Beethoven’s glorious Ninth Symphony with its last movement, the choral piece set to the poet Schiller’s “Ode to Joy”, I begin to realize that one can create something truly wondrous out of one’s pain and suffering. Beethoven wrote this magnificent work shortly before his death, when he was in tremendous emotional pain and totally deaf. Yet he created this truly amazing piece of music that lives on nearly 200 years after his death, and will probably do so for many years to come.

I now realize that there was a reason for my suffering and if, out of that, I can bring some joy or happiness to others, then my life will have had some purpose. It is only through this fellowship that I have been able to see that.

One Day at a Time . . .

I will always remember that my pain has been a growing experience that enables me to share what I have learned with other fellow sufferers. I can now appreciate all the miracles that my Higher Power performs in my life, and I am now truly able to experience joy.

Sharon S. 
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