Wednesday, 11 December 2019

ELDER'S MEDITATION OF THE DAY #essentiasofrecovery

“Peace… comes within the souls of men when they realize their relationship, their oneness, with the universe and all its powers, and when they realize that at the center of the Universe dwells Wakan-Tanka, and that this center is really everywhere, it is within each of us.”

~ Black Elk (Hehaka Sapa) OGLALA SIOUX 

If we are to know peace we must look within ourselves. In order to do this, we must learn to be still. We must quiet the mind. We must learn to meditate. Meditation helps us locate and find the center that is within ourselves. The center is where the Great One resides. When we start to look for peace, we need to realize where it is within ourselves. When we experience conflict we need to pause for a moment and ask the Power within ourselves, “How do you want me to handle this? What would you suggest I do in this situation?” By asking the High Power for help we find peace.

Creator, help me to find peace. 
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Claudia B. - Recovery Speaker


DAILY DOSE OF EMMET FOX #essentialsofrecovery


THE KING OF GLORY ENTERS HERE

Read Psalm 24.


He shall receive the blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.

This is the generation of them that seek him, that seek thy face….

To many it may seem that the purification of the heart will be a long and wearisome task, but we have to remember that when we pray it is God who works and not we. If you will use the power of the Word, old habits of thinking will fall away and new ones come in; and this is because you will receive your righteousness, or right thinking, from God. You have sought His face, and you must begin to express something of His nature, for we always grow unto that which we contemplate.

Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in.

Gates and doors symbolize understanding and it is only by the attainment of a higher degree of understanding that the King of glory—the vivid realization of God which we are seeking—can come to our souls. We are then told to ask ourselves who the King of glory is, and for what He stands. He is nothing less than the Lord; strong and mighty in battle, and the battle he fights, of course, is our battle.

The Lord of hosts, he is the King of Glory. 
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DAILY REFLECTIONS


“A GENUINE HUMILITY”


. . . we are actually to practice a genuine humility. This is to the end that our great blessings may never spoil us; that we shall forever live in thankful contemplation of Him who presides over us all.

~ TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 192 

Experience has taught me that my alcoholic personality tends to be grandiose. While having seemingly good intentions, I can go off on tangents in pursuit of my “causes.” My ego takes over and I lose sight of my primary purpose. I may even take credit for God’s handiwork in my life. Such an overstated feeling of my own importance is dangerous to my sobriety and could cause great harm to A.A. as a whole.

My safeguard, the Twelfth Tradition, serves to keep me humble. I realize, both as an individual and as a member of the Fellowship, that I cannot boast of my accomplishments, and that “God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.”

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc 
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JUST FOR TODAY #essentialsofrecovery

Misery Is Optional

No one is forcing us to give up our misery.

~ Basic Text, p. 29 

It’s funny to remember how reluctant we once were to surrender to recovery. We seemed to think we had wonderful, fulfilling lives as using addicts and that giving up our drugs would be worse than serving a life sentence at hard labor. In reality, the opposite was true: Our lives were miserable, but we were afraid to trade that familiar misery for the uncertainties of recovery.

It’s possible to be miserable in recovery, too, though it’s not necessary. No one will force us to work the steps, go to meetings, or work with a sponsor. There is no NA militia that will force us to do the things that will free us from pain. But we do have a choice. We've already chosen to give up the misery of active addiction for the sanity of recovery. Now, if were ready to exchange today’s misery for even greater peace, we have a means to do just that if we really want to.

Just for today: I don’t have to be miserable unless I really want to be. Today, I will trade in my misery for the benefits of recovery.

© 1991 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services Inc   
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Twenty-Four Hours A Day

A.A. Thought For The Day

Doctors think of the A.A. fellowship as group therapy. This is a very narrow conception of the depth of the A.A. fellowship. Looking at it purely as a means of acquiring and holding sobriety, it is right as far as it goes. But it doesn't go far enough. Group therapy is directed toward the help that the individual receives from it. It is essentially selfish. It is using the companionship of other alcoholics only in order to stay sober ourselves. But this is only the beginning of real A.A. fellowship. Do I deeply feel the true A.A. fellowship?

Meditation For The Day

Most of us have had to live through the dark part of our lives, the time of failure, the nighttime of our lives, when we were full of struggle and care, worry and remorse, when we felt deeply the tragedy of life. But with our daily surrender to a Higher Power, comes a peace and joy that makes all things new. We can now take each day as a joyous sunrise-gift from God to use for Him and for other fellow people. The night of the past is gone, this day is ours.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may take this day as a gift from God. I pray that I may thank God for this day and be glad in it. 
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Twenty-Four Hours A Day



A.A. Thought For The Day

Doctors think of the A.A. fellowship as group therapy. This is a very narrow conception of the depth of the A.A. fellowship. Looking at it purely as a means of acquiring and holding sobriety, it is right as far as it goes. But it doesn't go far enough. Group therapy is directed toward the help that the individual receives from it. It is essentially selfish. It is using the companionship of other alcoholics only in order to stay sober ourselves. But this is only the beginning of real A.A. fellowship. Do I deeply feel the true A.A. fellowship?

Meditation For The Day

Most of us have had to live through the dark part of our lives, the time of failure, the nighttime of our lives, when we were full of struggle and care, worry and remorse, when we felt deeply the tragedy of life. But with our daily surrender to a Higher Power, comes a peace and joy that makes all things new. We can now take each day as a joyous sunrise-gift from God to use for Him and for other fellow people. The night of the past is gone, this day is ours.

Prayer For The Day

I pray that I may take this day as a gift from God. I pray that I may thank God for this day and be glad in it.
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AS BILL SEES IT #essentialsofrecovery

 Page 130

Our Problem Centers in the Mind


We know that while the alcoholic keeps away from drink, he usually reacts much like other men. We are equally positive that once he takes any alcohol whatever into his system, something happens, in both the bodily and mental sense, which makes it virtually impossible for him to stop. The experience of any alcoholic will abundantly confirm this.

These observations would be academic and pointless if our friend never took the first drink, thereby setting the terrible cycle in motion. Therefore, the main problem of the alcoholic centers in his mind, rather than in his body.

~ ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, PP. 22-23 

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

KEEP THE FOCUS ON PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY

Responsible Attitudes


Alcoholics often try to shift responsibility to others. We once thought it was possible to blame others for our drinking, and we had sneaky ways of manipulating family members so they would feel guilty and comply with our demands.

In sober living, we must not allow ourselves to slip back into this mode of thinking. Keeping the focus on personal responsibility is our best way of approaching all problems. “What is my responsibility in this?” is a good question to ask in evaluating our part in situations.

We are always responsible for our own sobriety. Beyond that, we’re also responsible for maintaining good attitudes and making sure that our own anger and pride do not make any situation worse than it already is.

I’ll be responsible today for my own thoughts, feelings, and actions. If any stressful issue or situation arises, I’ll keep my focus on personal responsibility.

© 1996 by Hazelden Foundation 
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KEEP IT SIMPLE #essentialsofrecovery

When patterns are broken, new worlds emerge.

~ Tuli Keupferberg 

Recovery has happened to us. We stopped drinking or using other drugs and, like magic, a new world appeared. Being sober sure shakes up a person’s life! It’s good to shake up our world every now and then. This way, we see there’s not just one “world”, but many. We grow each time we step into a new world and learn new things. Of course, the addict’s world was new and exciting to us at one time. But we got trapped and couldn’t find our way out. Our Higher Power had to free us. We need to try new worlds, but we always need to take our Higher Power with us–into worlds where there’s honesty, love, and trust.

Prayer for the Day:

Higher Power, lead me to new worlds where I’ll learn more about living fully.

Action for the Day:

I’ll list 3 ways I can step into a new world today. For example, I could read something new, go to a museum, or eat a new food.

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

TODAY

“The only courage that matters is the kind that gets you from one moment to the next.”

~ Mignon McLaughlin 

I do not need courage for a lifetime—just for the moment. I am helped by the philosophy that teaches me to live one day at a time, one hour at a time, or one moment at a time. It is too daunting to try to live tomorrow. Life is a process to be lived, not a future to be anticipated.

For years, I tried to anticipate what life would throw at me, and I always came away confused and exhausted. I missed the joy of the moment. I had a thousand questions I could not answer; nobody can answer for the future today.

I can only take responsibility for my life a day at a time. As I develop the courage to face the moment, I become a winner.

May I avoid the fantasy of tomorrow and enjoy the reality of today. 

© 2008 Leo Booth 
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A DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrecovery

Reflection for the Day

Before I came to the Program—in fact, before I knew of the Program’s existence—I drifted from crisis to crisis. Occasionally, I tried to use my will to chart a new course; however, like a rudderless ship, I inevitably foundered once again on the rocks of my own despair. Today, in contrast, I receive guidance from my Higher Power. Sometimes, the only answer is a sense of peace or an assurance that all is well. Even though there may be a time of waiting before I see results, or before any direct guidance comes, will I try to remain confident that things are working out in ways that will be for the greatest good of everyone concerned?

Today I Pray


May I not expect instant, verbal communication with my Higher Power, like directions on a stamped, self-addressed postcard. May I have patience, and listen, and sense that God is present. May I accept my new feeling of radiant warmth and serenity as God’s way of assuring me that I am, finally, making some good choices.

Today I Will Remember

Patience: God’s message will come.

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

REAL LIVING

“A life lived in fear is a life half-lived.”

~ Tara Morice as Fran, from Baz Luhrmann’s film “Strictly Ballroom”) 

When I first saw this movie in 1993, it spoke volumes to my life and to my recovery. I had spent my life afraid, afraid of everything and everybody. If I crossed you, I feared your wrath. If I disappointed you, I dreaded the loss of your love. If things were going well, I wondered, often aloud, when the other shoe was going to drop. I had nowhere to go, no one to trust, nothing I could believe in, because I knew it would be taken away from me. The only safe haven I had was in the food, but I was afraid of the consequences. The biggest thing that kept me in my disease was the fear of what might be on the other side.

The bravest thing I ever did was walk through the doors of my first program meeting. I had been shamed into it by a therapist, but once I got there I sensed that my fears would be vanquished. I saw people who had been there, done that, and designed the t-shirt of fear that I was wearing. They showed me, through the Steps and Traditions, that there was more to life.

The program of recovery has taught me that a life of fear indeed is a life half-lived. Living in fear, I only succeeded in quashing the joy, the adventure, the zest for life that was naturally planted in me. It also eliminated the biggest fear … that of a Higher Power. It has given me faith, the diametric opposite of fear. Faith shined its light on the darkness of my life, and allowed me to live a fuller existence that cannot be taken from me, save for retreat into fearful despair. I am so immensely grateful for what I have been given: life, instead of mere existence.

One Day at a Time . . .

Faith in a Power greater than myself is a powerful antidote to a fearful, half-lived life. I pray to keep the light of faith shining brightly in my life.

~ Mark 
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Today's Gift #essentialsofrecovery



The price of wisdom is above rubies.

— Job 28:18





Our program is founded on wisdom, and the wisdom of the program is the light of our lives. It shines into the dark comers of the spirit where the myths lurk that would degrade rather than create, entrap rather than set free. Wisdom lets us see what and whose game is being played. Is it my game or yours? Not to know the difference is to dangle like a puppet from a set of strings hooked to head and limbs.




It may be a game of guilt, of taking responsibility for someone else’s life, of accepting peace at any price – or any number of enslaving games. Without the wisdom of the program, how could we know? Without wisdom, how could we learn to give ourselves credit for how far we have come rather than berate ourselves for how slow we are moving? What a relief and a comfort to be able to rely on our wise Steps and Traditions for fail-safe guidance.




Today, I am grateful for the program’s teachings.




From the book:



                          Days of Healing, Days of Joy by Earnie Larsen and Carol Larsen Hegarty 
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THE EYE OPENER #essentialsofrecovery

Every man is both human and divine, both good and evil, strong and weak, wise and foolish. The body, soul and mind are the battleground of our conflicting natures, and while these conflicts rage, we can have no peace.

It is only when we bring our conflicting emotions under control that victory over self is possible. We alcoholics have learned that we are unable to accomplish this without outside help. With that help, real peace is obtainable. No other way has worked for us.

Copyright  Hazelden Foundation 
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Daily Tao / 345 – Worthwhile #essentialsofrecovery

Inside me, it was quiet all day :
I waited until midnight for a sound.
Outside me, it was noisy all day :
I waited all night for silence.
Tao’s power is sound.
Tao’s potential is silence.


It is said that even if one hears Tao before the day is over, then that day has been worthwhile. Even if one hears about Tao before one’s life is over, then one’s life has been worthwhile.

But sometimes it takes a long time to hear about Tao. There are some days when Tao does not manifest itself right away. It seems that the more you want to love, the more hatred tempts you. The more you want to be pure, the more negativity pursues you. The more you want serenity, the more chaos assaults you. The ordinary have common problems. Those who pursue Tao struggle against titanic forces. What can you do but accept it and persevere? If you fret about it, then you have not only spent the day away from Tao, but you have ruined that day with emotional turmoil too.

Sometimes Tao does not appear until the very end of the day. Maybe it’s just that you are more relaxed and have put aside all your cares. Maybe Tao is capricious. It is hard to say. When Tao does come, it is as if you are just now hearing a true sound. When it does come, such a feeling of serenity overcomes you that it quiets all the noise of the day. 
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Daily Zen

When you set out to look for the Way,
At once it changes to something
That is to be sought in your self.
When sight becomes no-sight,
You come to possess the jewel,
But you have not yet fully penetrated into it.
Suddenly one day everything is empty like space
That has no inside or outside, no bottom or top,
And you are aware of one principle
Pervading all the ten thousand things.
You know then that your heart
Is so vast that it can never be measured.

- Daikaku (1213-1279) 
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