Sunday, 11 April 2021

RANDOM BIG BOOK OF ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS #essentialsofrec #Recovery #AA #BigBook

What is the solution? Perhaps I can best answer this by relating one of my experiences.

About one year prior to this experience a man was brought in to be treated for chronic alcoholism. He had but partially recovered from a gastric hemorrhage and seemed to a case of pathological mental deterioration. He has lost everything worthwhile in life and was only living, one might say, to drink. He frankly admitted and believed that for him there was no hope. Following the elimination of alcohol, there was found to be no permanent brain injury. He accepted the plan outlined in this book. One year later he called to see me, and I experienced a very strange sensation. I knew the man by name, and partly recognized his features, but there all resemblance ended. From a trembling, despairing, nervous wreck, had emerged a man brimming over with self-reliance and contentment. I talked with him for some time, but was not able to bring myself to feel that I had known him before. To me he was a stranger, and so he left me. A long time has passed with no return to alcohol.

When I need a mental uplift, I often think of another case brought in by a physician prominent in New York. The patient had made his own diagnosis and deciding his situation hopeless, had hidden in a deserted barn determined to die. He was rescued by a searching party, and, in desperate condition, brought to me. Following his physical rehabilitation, he had a talk with me in which he frankly stated he thought the treatment a waste of effort, unless I could assure him, which no one ever had, that in the future he would have the "will power" to resist the impulse to drink.

His alcoholic problem was so complex and his depression so great, that we felt his only hope would be through what we then called "moral psychology", and we doubted if even that would have any effect.


Daily Reflections #essentialsofrec #Blame #Emotions


To see how erratic emotions victimized us often took a long time. We
could perceive them quickly in others, but only slowly in ourselves.
First of all, we had to admit that we had many of these defects, even
though such disclosures were painful and humiliating. Where other
people were concerned, we had to drop the word “blame” from our
speech and thought.


When I did my Fourth Step, following the Big Book guidelines, I
noticed that my grudge list was filled with my prejudices and my
blaming others for my not being able to succeed and to live up to my
potential. I also discovered I felt different because I was black. As I
continued to work on the Step, I learned that I always had drunk to rid
myself of those feelings. It was only when I sobered up and worked on
my inventory, that I could no longer blame anyone.
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NA Just For Today #essentialsofrec #NA #Recovery

A Closed Mind
“A new idea cannot be grafted onto a closed mind… Open-mindedness leads us to the very insights that have eluded us during our lives.”

Basic Text p. 93

We arrived in NA at the lowest point in our lives. We’d just about run out of ideas. What we needed most when we got here were new ideas, new ways of living, shared from the experience of people who’d seen those ideas work. Yet our closed minds prevented us from taking in the very ideas we needed to live.

Denial keeps us from appreciating just how badly we really need new ideas and new direction. By admitting our powerlessness and recognizing how truly unmanageable our lives have become, we allow ourselves to see how much we need what NA has to offer.

Self-dependence and self-will can keep us from admitting even the possibility of the existence of a Power greater than ourselves. However, when we admit the sorry state self-will has gotten us into, we open our eyes and our minds to new possibilities. When others tell us of a Power that has brought sanity to their lives, we begin to believe that such a Power may do the same for us.

A tree stripped of its branches will die unless new branches can be grafted onto its trunk. In the same way, addiction stripped us’ of whatever direction we had. To grow or even to survive, we must open our minds and allow new ideas to be grafted onto our lives.

Just for today: I will ask my Higher Power to open my mind to the new ideas of recovery.
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Twenty-Four Hours A Day #essentialsofrec #Recovery

A.A. Thought For The Day
In that alcoholic world, one drink always leads to another and you
can’t stop till you’re paralyzed. And the next morning it begins all over
again. You eventually land in a hospital or jail. You lose your job. Your
home is broken up. You’re always in a mess. You’re on the
merry-go-round and you can’t get off. You’re in a squirrel cage and
you can’t get out. Am I convinced that the alcoholic world is not a
pleasant place for me to live in?

Meditation For The Day
I must learn to accept self-discipline. I must try never to yield one
point that I have already won. I must not let myself go in resentments,
hates, fears, pride, lust, or gossip. Even if the discipline keeps me
separated from some people who are without discipline, nevertheless I
will carry on. I may have different ways and a different standard of
living than some others. I may be actuated by different motives than some
people. But I will try to live the way I believe God wants me to live, no
matter what others say.

Prayer For The Day
I pray that I may be an example to others of a better way of living. I
pray that I may carry on in spite of hindrances.
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As Bill Sees It #spiritual #essentialsofrec

“The Spiritual Angle”, p. 101

How often do we sit in A.A. meetings and hear the speaker declare,
“But I haven’t yet got the spiritual angle.” Prior to this statement, he
has described a miracle of transformation which has occurred in
him–not only his release from alcohol but a complete change in his
whole attitude toward life and the living of it.

It is apparent to everyone else present that he has received a great gift,
and that this gift is all out of proportion to anything that may be
expected from simple A.A. participation. So we in the audience smile
and say to ourselves, “Well, that guy is just reeling with the spiritual
angle–except that he doesn’t seem to know it yet!”

Grapevine, July 1962
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Walk in Dry Places #essentialofrec #motives #Helping #Recovery

Helping Others


It may sound selfish, but you should always help others for no reason other than your own benefit. In giving assistance, guard against posing as an idealist or even a Good Samaritan. We are not saints, and our spiritual progress is interrupted the moment we begin to act more saintly than we really are.
Two things happen when we help others in the full knowledge that we are really helping only ourselves. First, we do not place the other person in a demeaning role or make him or her obligated to us. Second, we sidestep the swollen egotism that could arise if we view ourselves as rescuers.
In helping others, we are only passing on the good that has come to us. Any good action will always bring rich rewards in personal well-being. People we have helped will be grateful to us when it becomes clear that we don’t demand their gratitude. They will also be inspired to follow this example, which is the true AA spirit that became evident with the first Twelve Step calls.

I’ll look for opportunities to help others in the same way that a businessman looks for ways to increase profits. I know that I grow as a person when I help others in the right spirit.
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Keep It Simple #Pain #essentialsofrec #Healing

Many of us as children, were taught to hide our pain, to act as if we had none. We look for ways to hide our pain. Alcohol and other drugs helped us do this. But the pain always returned. We were ashamed that we hurt. We thought we were the only one who hurt so badly. and, worst of all, we
thought our pain meant we were bad people. Ours is a program of honesty. As we live life, there will be troubles, and there will be pain. But now we know that we don’t try to hide it. If we hide our wounds, they will not heal. We will listen to others pain and ask them to listen to ours. This will help us continue our journey in recovery.
Prayer for the Day: God, help me be honest about my pain. Help me see pain not as a personal defect, but as a part of life.

Action for the Day: I’ll share my pain with a friend, a family member, my group, or sponsor. I’ll ask them to do the same with me. I’ll think of pain as part of life.
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A Day At A Time #essentialsofrec #God #program

Reflection For The Day
I came; I came to; I came to believe. The Program has enabled me tolearn that deep down in every man, woman and child is the fundamental idea of a God. It may be obscured by pomp, by calamity, by worship of other things, but in some form or other it is there. For faith in a Power greater than ourselves, and miraculous demonstrations of the Power in human lives are facts as old as man himself. How well do I share my free gifts?

Today I Pray
I pray that I may continue to look for — and find — that Godliness that is in me and in every other person, no matter how it is obscured. May I be aware that the consciousness of a Higher Power has been present in man since he was first given the power to reason, no matter what name he gave to it or how he sought to reach it. May my own faith in a Higher Power be reinforced by the experience of all mankind — and by the working of His gracious miracles in my own life.

Today I Will Remember
God is in us all.
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One Day At A Time #essentialsofrec #God #HigherPower


When you are with others, be with them wholeheartedly.
But when you are by yourself, be alone with God.

Paramahansa Yogananda
When I pray to the God of my understanding, I am able to share my thoughts, to vent my feelings, to express my gratitude. But it isn’t enough for me to speak to God. I also need to listen. That’s where meditation comes in.

Sometimes I select a passage from program literature to meditate on. I read the passage, and then sit quietly and allow my Higher Power to help me make connections between what I’ve read and the life I’m leading.

Other times, I will pick a word or phrase, like “love” or “peace” and repeat it, over and over, in my mind. I allow myself to align with the feeling of that word.

I may picture a serene place, and mentally go there, to rest and regroup from the pressures of the day.

I also will sometimes sit quietly, “in the silence,” as the Quakers say. I listen to my breath moving in and out of my body, and I allow my Higher Power to speak to my heart.

No matter which meditation practice I select, the important thing for me is to do it faithfully, every day, and to totally give myself to it. I figure, if God can give to me, then I can give a little of myself back to the One who has blessed me with this program.

One Day at a Time . . .

I will spend some quiet time alone with my Higher Power, and listen to that still, small voice within.

~ Jeff 
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Today's Gift #essentialsofrec #Feelings #Recovery

Listen to your feelings. They tell you when you need to take care of yourself, like finding a friend if you feel lonely, crying if you feel sad, singing and smiling if you feel happy, and acting frisky if you feel good. –Pat Palmer
When we get too much of anything–too much fun or too much work–we may feel really crummy when it’s over.
One way to listen to our crummy feelings is to say, “Here comes the letdown after all that fun.” We can imagine a spaceship falling to earth, floating on the ocean. Coming down to earth is as much a part of the adventure as the countdown and blastoff.
A letdown for us means we need to let our bodies and minds rest, just like the spaceship, bobbing around without any special direction. We need to take it easy, do nothing, put off making plans.
Then we can ask God to help us let go of the crummy feelings that come along with a letdown. We can ask the spirit within us to guide us through this time of change. Then we will let down and let go.

What are some things I can do to take it easy the next time I feel down?

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Daily Tao / 101 – Concentration #essentialsofrec #Tao #Taoism #Zen

Imagination, song, the soaring spirit.
Separate them to know them as aspects of the whole,
Join them to know the mystery of totality.

The mind, if focused, can become the most powerful force we know. Yet for most of us, we are lost in the vastness of our own uncharted minds. We play around with different aspects, find certain modes that we can get by with, and leave the rest unexplored. Those who follow Tao do not do this. They want to explore all the dimensions of the mind so that they may find a wholly integral mode of consciousness.

The primary means of exploration is through concentration of the mind. Practitioners first select an aspect and delve into it by daily focus. Only when they have fully understood do they go on. It is like studying. When you are first introduced to a subject, you must put your attention to work in order to master the knowledge. Such concentration leads to absorption, like mixing liquids together in a bottle : Once they are combined, they cannot be distinguished from one another.

With concentration, all the various aspects of the mind can be joined together into one superconscious mode. Sound is the same as sight, taste is the same as smell, touch is the same as thought, and all that we are is identical with the spiritual energy that resides within us. In this high concentration, there is complete union, and we feel the joy of total integration with all our facets.

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What people expect to happen is always different from what actually happens. From this comes great disappointment; this is the way the world works.

-Sutra PiƱata 
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Around the Year With Emmet Fox #essentialsofrec #Stress #Emmet #Fox


Loosen up. To be tense is the surest way to fail in any undertaking great or small.

To desire success is a splendid thing bu to pursue success too tensely is to make certain of missing it. The carefree approach in any endeavor is a shortcut to success. In music, in sport, in study, in business life, many people fail, or advance very slowly, because they make hard work of it.

Treat your work as fun. Regard the difficulties as part of the game, laugh off the annoyances. This, of course, is the real difference between work and play.

Take it easy Loosen up!

For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light (Matthew 11:30)

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