Monday, 18 November 2019

DAILY REFLECTIONS


A SAFETY NET


Occasionally . . . We are seized with a rebellion so sickening that we simply won’t pray. When these things happen we should not think too ill of ourselves. We should simply resume prayer as soon as we can, doing what we know to be good for us.

~ TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 105 

Sometimes I scream, stomp my feet, and turn my back on my Higher Power. Then my disease tells me that I am a failure, and that if I stay angry I’ll surely get drunk. In those moments of self-will it’s as if I’ve slipped over a cliff and am hanging by one hand. The above passage is my safety net, in that it urges me to try some new behavior, such as being kind and patient with myself. It assures me that my Higher Power will wait until I am willing once again to risk letting go, to land in the net, and to pray.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc  
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TWENTY-FOUR HOURS A DAY


A.A. Thought for the Day


I have gotten over my procrastination. I was always putting things off till tomorrow and as a result they never got done. “There is always another day” was my motto instead of “Do it now.” Under the influence of alcohol, I had grandiose plans. When I was sober I was too busy getting over my drunk to start anything. “Someday I’ll do that”—but I never did it. In A.A. I have learned that it’s better to make a mistake once in a while than to never do anything at all. We learn by trial and error. But we must act now and not put it off until tomorrow. Have I learned to doit now?

Meditation for the Day

“Do not hide your light under a bushel. Arise and shine, for the light has come and the glory of the Lord is risen in thee.” The glory of the Lord shines in the beauty of your character. It is risen in you, even though you can realize it only in part. “Now you see as in a glass darkly, but later you will see face to face.” The glory of the Lord is too dazzling for mortals to see fully on earth. But some of this glory is risen in you when you try to reflect that light in your life.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may try to be a reflection of the Divine Light. I pray that some of its rays may shine in my life

© 1954, 1975, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation  
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AS BILL SEES IT #essentialsofrecovery

Easy Does It — but Do It

Procrastination is really sloth in five syllable.


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

“My observation is that some people can get by with a certain amount of postponement, but few can live with outright rebellion.”

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

“We have succeeded in confronting many a problem drinker with that awful alternative, `This we A.A.’s do, or we die.’ Once this much is firmly in his mind, more drinking only turns the coil tighter.

“As many an alcoholic has said, `I came to the place where it was either into A.A. or out the window. So here I am!'”

~ 1. TWELVE AND TWELVE, P. 67
~ 2. LETTER, 1952
~ 3. LETTER, 1950

© 1967 by Alcoholics Anonymous ® World Services, Inc  
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WALK IN DRY PLACES #essentialsofrecovery


THE OLD FRIENDS WHO DROPPED US

Personal Relations


As our drinking progressed, most of us lost old friends. Sometimes it was our behavior that drove them away; at other times, it was because they didn’t want to associate with “losers.”

In sobriety, some of our old friendships have been restored. These are the real friendships based on trust and true affection.

But sobriety can also give us a deeper and finer understanding of friendships. We may acquire a new set of values on this subject. We may find that some of those whom we considered friends were only fair-weather drinking acquaintances.

Drinking acquaintances will probably ease away from us if we really mean business in staying sober. This need not bother us if we’re thinking rightly.

The great news in all of this is that in the fellowship, we’ll be making some of the best friends we can ever have. We’ll also learn how to be great friends with ourselves.

In my thinking about friendship today, I’ll seek people I trust and like, not people I can use.

© 1996 by Hazelden Foundation  
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KEEP IT SIMPLE #essentialsofrecovery


Life is short: live it up.

~ Nikita Khrushchev 

We won’t stay sober long unless it’s more fun than using chemicals. The truth is, using chemicals wasn’t fun anymore. It was work. We just told ourselves it was still fun.

So live it up! Try new things. Meet new friends. Try new foods. Taking risks and having adventures are a basic human need. So go for it. Sobriety is fun. Living a spiritual life is fun. Get out there and live!

Prayer for the day:

Higher Power, teach me to play. Teach me to have fun. Teach me to live!

Action for the day:

Today is for fun. I’ll try something new. I’ll see how many people I can get to smile. And I’ll celebrate the fact that I’m sober.

Copyright © 1988 by Hazelden Foundation 
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FR.LEO'S DAILY MEDITATION #essentialsofrecovery

STRENGTH

“All cruelty springs from weakness.”

~ A Seneca Saying 

Spiritual recovery means I must confront my disease and remember the sick attitudes and behavior patterns. Sometimes, I would rather not talk about my disease for it can be embarrassing and shameful, particularly the cruelty I demonstrated. Alcoholism made me lash out at the weak. My own weakness inflicted pain and cruelty on others.

Today I remember this only to rejoice in the strength that allows me vulnerability. My past weaknesses made me act as if I were strong. Now my strength allows me to be weak in a way that is healthy.

I get my ego out of the way and open my heart to love. I know my strength is God ordained and shows up in myriad ways.

God, the recognition of my past cruelties enables me to forgive and understand others. 

© 2008 Leo Booth 
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A DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrecovery

Reflection for the Day

“Nothing is enough to the man for whom enough is too little,” wrote the Greek philosopher Epicurus. Now that we’re free from addiction, rebuilding our self-respect and winning back the esteem of family and friends, we have to avoid becoming smug about our new-found success. For most of us, success has always been a heady brew; even in our new life, it’s still possible to fall into the dangerous trap of “big-shot- itis.” As insurance, we ought to remember that we’re free today only by the grace of God. Will I remember that any success I may be having is far more His success than mine?

Today I Pray

May I keep a constant string-on-the-finger reminder that I have found freedom through the grace of God—just so I don’t let my pride try to convince me I did it all myself. May I learn to cope with success by ascribing it to a Higher Power, not to my own questionable superiority.

Today I Will Remember

Learn to deal with success.

© 1989 by Hazelden Foundation  
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ONE DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrecovery

HONESTY

You never find yourself until you face the truth.

~ Pearl Bailey 

I was brought up to be scrupulously honest, or so I thought. I still remember how my father would go back into a shop if he’d been given too much change, a practice that I adopted too. I found it hard to tell a lie, even a white lie, and I would never contemplate cheating on a test. But when it came to food, I only realized later, I was totally dishonest. I was even dishonest when it came to telling people how I felt, or for that matter who I really was. The person who did these things was a totally different person to the upright person I liked people to see.

I know now that all the things I’d hidden around food were obviously what I felt ashamed about. I wanted people to see only the “good” side of me and not the person who did all these devious things in secret. I kept thinking that I was a bad person and the shame stopped me from being totally honest about what I had been doing.

It has taken time, and the love and acceptance I have found in the fellowship, to be able to get totally honest with myself. It has taken time to look at all the things about me that I felt ashamed of. In the housecleaning necessary in the Steps, I have been able to face my shame. I learned that I am human, and that I have a disease. Some of the soul searching has been very painful, but at the same time it has been totally enlightening. I am amazed how I am beginning to know a new me, with faults and all, but a loveable me nevertheless. As I peel off more layers of the onion that represents the sum total of what makes me unique and truly one of God’s creatures, I am actually beginning to like the new me. I know now that I am not a bad person trying to get good, merely a sick person trying to get well.

One Day at a Time . . . 
I will keep being honest about who I am, what I eat and how I am behaving in my relationships, so I can learn more about me. Even when I don’t like what I see, I know I am still a loveable person and a child of God, created in His image.

~ Sharon S.  
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ELDER'S MEDITATION OF THE DAY #essentialsofrecovery


“Power is not manifested in the human being. True power is in the Creator.”

~ Oren Lyons, ONONDAGA ~

The Old Ones say the only true power is spiritual power. Sometimes our egos tell us we have power but really we don’t. Great Spirit power is called by other names such as love, forgiveness, intelligence, life, principles and laws. When the Creator uses this power to make the human being powerful, we must stay humble. We should constantly acknowledge that we are who we are. We do what we do because of the power of the Great One.

Great One, guide me to use Your power well. I will use it only to serve the people. 
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Today's Gift



Making prompt amends is the fresh air of each new day.


— Sandra Little

Today brings us a new hill to climb and a new view from the top. Taking time to reflect about our daily journeys is a challenging adventure in self-discovery. Looking down, we see our past trials and difficulties as lessons to learn from. Letting go of old baggage as we end our day will give us a bright window to open onto tomorrow.

Completing a daily inventory creates a good foundation for living peacefully. Honestly acknowledging the things we have done or said to hurt ourselves or others enables us to say, “I’m sorry” and to begin each day with a clean slate and a peaceful heart. As we empty ourselves of regret by making amends to ourselves and others, we make room for the love and comfort of our Higher Power.

Today help me take inventory and make amends where I need to.

From the book:

                                                                 
                                              Body, Mind, and Spirit by Anonymous 
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The Eye Opener #essentialsofrecovery


Money is a medium of exchange and is as good as the things you can get with it.

If you have enough money in your pocket when you fall overboard it can drown you.

Love of money can make you the most despised of men, but love of mankind can make your money a blessing to you and to them.

Copyright Hazelden Foundation  
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Daily Tao / 322 – Decadence #essentialsofrecovery

Powdered concubine dressed in rich silks —
Feet bound, body soft, lips slack —
Views lotuses through binoculars.
A dragonfly alights on her motionless fan.


How do you know when your own life verges on decadence?

Certainly when the force of form becomes more important that the force of substance. When etiquette and morals become more important that understanding and righteousness. When procedure becomes more important than creativity. When gratifying your lust becomes more important than giving to others. When patriotism becomes more important than measured governing and enlightened treatment of other nations. When the act of eating becomes more important than considerations of nutrition. When the opera becomes more important than helping the poor and homeless. When one’s own comfort becomes more important than the suffering of loves ones. When ambition becomes more important than benevolence. When prestige becomes more important than charity. When the academy becomes more important than the streets. When loud expression becomes more important than listening to others. When outrageousness becomes more important than communication. When connoisseurship becomes more important than simple acts. When style becomes more important than function. When books become more important than teachers. When expediency becomes more important than the elderly.

When you smell these things happening, you are not far from decadence. 
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Daily Zen

Intention is the core of all conscious life. It is our intentions that create karma, our intentions that help others, our intentions that lead us away from the delusions of individuality toward the immutable verities of enlightened awareness. Conscious intention colors and moves everything.

-Master Hsing Yun, "Describing the Indescribable"  
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Daily Zen #essentialsofrecovery

Let me tell you about the middle path. Dressing in rough and dirty garments, letting your hair grow matted, abstaining from eating any meat or fish, does not cleanse the one who is deluded. Mortifying the flesh through excessive hardship does not lead to a triumph over the senses. All self-inflicted suffering is useless as long as the feeling of self is dominant.

You should lose your involvement with yourself and then eat and drink naturally, according to the needs of your body. Attachment to your appetites--whether you deprive or indulge them--can lead to slavery, but satisfying the needs of daily life is not wrong. Indeed, to keep a body in good health is a duty, for otherwise the mind will not stay strong and clear.

This is the middle path.

-Discourse II

From "The Pocket Buddha Reader," edited by Anne Bancroft, 2000. Reprinted by arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Boston 
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