Saturday, 27 February 2016

RANDOM BIG BOOK OF ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS #essentialsofrec #BigBook #Quotes


"We believe, and so suggested a few years ago, that the action of
alcohol on these chronic alcoholics is a manifestation of an allergy;
that the phenomenon of craving is limited to this class and never
occurs in the average temperate drinker. These allergic types can
never safely use alcohol in any form at all; and once having formed
the habit and found they cannot break it, once having lost their self-
confidence, their reliance upon things human, their problems pile up
on them and become astonishingly difficult to solve."

~ The Doctor's Opinion, pg. xxviii~ 

Angela O'K. - AA Speakers - "The hand of AA and my recovery from alcoholism" #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Speakers #AA



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Just For Today #essentialsofrec #Recovery #NA #addiction


“Pure Motives”

“We examine our actions, reactions, and motives. We often find that we’ve been doing better than we’ve been feeling.” 

Basic Text, p. 42

Imagine a daily meditation book with this kind of message: “When you wake up in the morning, before you rise from your bed, take a moment for reflection. Lie back, gather your thoughts, and consider your plans for the day. One by one, review the motives behind those plans. If your motives are not entirely pure, roll over and go back to sleep.” Nonsense, isn’t it?

No matter how long we’ve been clean, almost all of us have mixed motives behind almost everything we do. However, that’s no reason to put our lives on hold. We don’t have to wait for our motives to become perfectly pure before we can start living our recovery.

As the program works its way into our lives, we begin acting less frequently on our more questionable motives. We regularly examine ourselves, and we talk with our sponsor about what we find. We pray for knowledge of our Higher Power’s will for us, and we seek the power to act on the knowledge we’re given. The result? We don’t get perfect, but we do get better.

We’ve begun working a spiritual program. We won’t ever become spiritual giants. But if we look at ourselves realistically, we’ll probably realize that we’ve been doing better than we’ve been feeling.

Just for today: I will examine myself realistically. I will seek the power to act on my best motives, and not to act on my worst.
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Sunday, 7 February 2016

EMMET FOX SPEAKS #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Emmet #Fox


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RANDOM BIG BOOK ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS #esssentialsofrec #Recovery #BigBook #AA

When we saw others solve their problems by a simple reliance upon the Spirit of the Universe, we had to stop doubting the power of God. Our ideas did not work. But the God idea did.

~We Agnostics, Page 52~

DAILY REFLECTIONS #essentialsofrec #Humility #Faith



A PATH TO FAITH


True humility and an open mind can lead us to faith, and every A.A. meeting is an assurance that God will restore us to sanity if we rightly relate ourselves to Him.

~ TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 33 

My last drunk had landed me in the hospital, totally broken. It was then that I was able to see my past float in front of me. I realized that, through drinking, I had lived every nightmare I had ever had. My own self-will and obsession to drink had driven me into a dark pit of hallucinations, blackouts and despair. Finally beaten, I asked for God’s help. His presence told me to believe. My obsession for alcohol was taken away and my paranoia has since been lifted. I am no longer afraid. I know my life is healthy and sane.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc
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JUST FOR TODAY #essentialsofrec #NA #Addiction #recovery


This Is Not a Test

“We have found a loving, personal God to whom we can turn.”

~ Basic Text p. 27 


Some of us come into recovery with the impression that life’s hardships are a series of cosmic tests designed to teach us something. This belief is readily apparent when something traumatic happens and we wail, “My Higher Power is testing me!” We’re convinced that it’s a test of our recovery when someone offers us drugs, or a test of our character when faced with a situation where we could do something unprincipled without getting caught. We may even think it’s a test of our faith when we’re in great pain over a tragedy in our lives.

But a loving Higher Power doesn’t test our recovery, our character, or our faith. Life just happens, and sometimes it hurts. Many of us have lost love through no fault of our own. Some of us have lost all of our material wealth. A few of us have even grieved the loss of our own children. Life can be terribly painful at times, but the pain is not inflicted on us by our Higher Power. Rather, that Power is constantly by our sides, ready to carry us if we can’t walk by ourselves. There is no harm that life can do us that the God of our understanding can’t heal.

Just for today: I will have faith that my Higher Power’s will for me is good, and that I am loved. I will seek my Higher Power’s help in times of need.

© 1991 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services Inc
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TWENTY-FOUR HOURS A DAY #essentialsofrec #Reality #recovery


A. A. Thought for the Day

A night club crowded with men and women all dressed up in evening clothes looks like a very festive place. But you should see the rest rooms of that night club the next morning. “What a mess! People have been sick all over the place and does it smell! The glamour of the night before is all gone and only the stink of the morning after is left. In A.A. we learn to take a long view of drinking instead of a short view. We learn to think less about the pleasure of the moment and more about the consequences. Has the night before become less important to me and the morning after more important?

Meditation for the Day


Only a few more steps and then God’s power shall be seen and known in my life. I am now walking in darkness, surrounded by the limitations of space and time. But even in this darkness, I can have faith and can be a light to guide feet that are afraid. I believe that God’s power will break through the darkness and my prayers will pierce even to the ears of God Himself. But only a cry from the heart, a trusting cry, ever pierces that darkness and reaches to the divine ear of God.

Prayer for the Day


I pray that the divine power of God will help my human weakness. I pray that my prayer may reach through the darkness to the ear of God.

© 1954, 1975, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation
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AS BILL SEES IT #essnetialsofrec #God #Prayer #Recovery



Page 38

Pipeline to God


“I am a firm believer in both guidance and prayer. But I am fully aware, and humble enough, I hope, to see there may be nothing infallible about my guidance.

“The minute I figure I have got a perfectly clear pipeline to God, I have become egotistical enough to get into real trouble. Nobody can cause more needless grief than a power-driver who thinks he has got it straight from God.”

~ 2. LETTER, 1950

© 1967 by Alcoholics Anonymous ® World Services, Inc
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EASY DOES IT #essentialsofrec #Problems #Rcovery #ThePast


THE NOW

Yesterday is gone; forget it. Tomorrow never comes; don’t worry. Today is here; get busy.

~ Anonymous 

When we live in the now, for this day only, one day at a time, we assure ourselves a comfortable reality. We cannot afford to regret the past. Solutions that worked for yesterday’s problems might be obsolete today.

Thinking into the future is projection, an act of purely wishful thinking that is a waste of precious time for growth. The time we spend “projecting” is time wasted. The future is never what we project it to be. Instead of spending time thinking about the future in the present, we can be spending time making the present better.

The only thing that emerges from thinking about the negative parts of our past is guilt and shame. The only thing that emerges from thinking about our future is fear of the unknown. We can eliminate guilt, shame, and fear from our present lives by dealing only with the present.

Today I will spend each moment in the here and now, making the present better.

©1990 by Anonymous, Published by Hazelden
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WALK IN DRY PLACES #essentialsofrec #Responsibility #Actions #Recovery


RESPONSIBILITY FOR OUR ACTIONS

Maturity


The practice of scapegoating goes way back to biblical times. It’s easier to blame others for our problems than to take personal responsibility for facing and solving these problems.

In the AA program, however, there’s nothing that serves as a basis for blaming others. In every way, AA insists that alcoholics take personal responsibility—not only for finding and maintaining sobriety, but also for past wrongs and personal shortcomings. This is a difficult change for alcoholics who have believed that many of their problems were caused by others.

But being forced to take responsibility for our actions is a blessing in disguise. It fairly shouts the good news that we can take charge of our lives despite what others think and do. With God’s help, we can change ourselves into the people we ought to be. We are fortunate that life is arranged to give us this personal responsibility— where would we be if our recovery depended only on others?

We also learn that this responsibility is not limited to our drinking. We are responsible for everything we think and do, and we have the power to make improvements in our lives beginning today.

I will go through the day without blaming others for my problems. I will feel grateful today that I am responsible, that personal responsibility is part of my God-given free will.

© 1996 by Hazelden Foundation
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KEEP IT SIMPLE #essentialsofrec #Recovery #AA


I thank God for my handicaps, for through them, I have found myself, my work and my God.

~ Helen Keller

None of us ever wanted to be addicts. It’s not what we would choose to be—just as no one would choose to be blind and deaf. Helen Keller, who was blind and deaf, told of how her problems became her biggest gift. Through them, she found true meaning in her life.

We can accept our handicap—our addiction—and learn from it. The truth is, we’re all handicapped in some way. Recovery is about facing our addiction and learning to live with it. When we see we can’t do things alone, we see the need for a Higher Power.

Prayer for the Day

Higher Power, help me see myself as I really am. Give to me the serenity that comes from accepting my handicaps.

Action for the Day

Today, I’ll list all the ways I am handicapped. I’ll ask myself, “What gift does each of these hold for me?”

Copyright © 1988 by Hazelden Foundation
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FR. LEO'S DAILY MEDITATION #essentialsofrec #Recovery #FrLeo #Childlike



CHILDLIKE

“In every child who is born, under no matter what circumstances, and of no matter what parents, the potentiality of the human race is born again.”

~ James Agee ~

Today I see and believe the God-given dignity of the human race in the faces and lifestyles of others. In the challenge and rebelliousness of youth, there is the hope for tomorrow. I associate myself with the need to question, risk, and be outrageous. I play and laugh at myself and own my craziness. I do not need to be perfect. When I used drugs, I was judgmental, serious, and controlling. Everything had to have a place, an answer, or be acceptable to others. My guilt was caused by my inability to please others.

Today I can be childlike and identify with the radical message for tomorrow: “To thine own self be true!”

God, I see a child looking at the stars and I smile. I am that child. 

© 2008 Leo Booth
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A DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrec #Responsibility #Meditation #Recovery



Reflection for the Day

Why do I do what I do? Why did I say what I said? Why on earth did I put off an important responsibility? Questions like these, best asked of myself in a quiet time of meditation, demand honest answers. I may have to think deeply for those answers, going beyond the tempting rationalizations that lack the luster of truth. Have I accepted the fact that self-deception can only damage me, providing a clouded and unrealistic picture of the person I really am?

Today I Pray

May God allow me to push aside my curtain of fibs, alibis, rationalizations, justifications, distortions, and downright lies and let in the light on the real truths about myself. May I meet the person I really am and take comfort in the person I can become.

Today I Will Remember

Hello, Me. Meet the real Me.

© 1989 by Hazelden Foundation
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ONE DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrec #OA #overeaters #Recovery #Fellowship


FELLOWSHIP

We may have all come on different ships,
but we’re in the same boat now.


~ Martin Luther King Jr. 


As a child I never had many friends and I was never one of the “in” crowd. I had many complexes and never thought I was good enough, or clever enough or thin enough. I didn’t date much, nor did I often go to parties. Instead I lived in my perfect fantasy world, where I would one day be thin and beautiful and live happily ever after. As a result food became my best friend, and where friends would constantly disappoint me or leave me, food was always there to numb the pain of loneliness, rejection and loss. There was never anyone in whom I could confide the unbearable pain that I felt, and so I would bury myself in books and food, and thought that as long as I had enough food to soothe that great big hole in my soul, everything would be fine.

Finally, however, when the food was causing me more pain than the pain it was supposed to take away, in desperation I found the doors of this wonderful fellowship. The people in that first meeting were from all walks of life, and of all ages, with some being old enough to be my parents or young enough to be my children. Even though they initially appeared so different to me, I realized that in this motley group of people I had found the friends that I had always been looking for. The common bond we shared in our desire to stop eating compulsively and to heal our lives was the cement that keeps this wonderful fellowship going. These friends listened to me without judging me, they loved me even when I couldn’t love myself, and they were there for me when I needed them. They have become my best friends and my family. It’s a result of this fellowship with other compulsive overeaters, who share with me their experience, strength and hope, that I am constantly able to learn and grow.

One Day at a Time . . .

I will reach out in fellowship to my friends in the program, as they reach out to me, and in doing so I am empowered in ways that are truly miraculous.


~ Sharon S. 
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ELDER'S MEDITATION OF THE DAY #essentialsofrec #CHEROKEE #Elders #Respect


“I can tell you that understanding begins with love and respect. It begins with respect for the Great Spirit. All things—and I mean ALL things—have their own will and their own way and their own purpose; this is what is to be respected.”


~ Rolling Thunder, CHEROKEE 

Everything on earth has a purpose and is designed special. No two things are created identical. Sometimes in our minds we have a picture of how things should be, and often what we see is different from what they really are. When this happens we often want to control how things are, making them act or behave according to our picture. We need to leave things alone. God is running all things. How do we do this? In our minds we tell ourselves to love all things and respect all things just as they are. Accept what we cannot change.

Great Spirit, teach me the value of respect and help me to accept people, places and things just as they are.
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A WOMAN’S SPIRIT #essentialsofrec #Maturity #Growth


To gain maturity I need to become acquainted with all aspects of myself.

~ Maureen Brady 

Learning about ourselves is often likened to peeling an onion. We’ve grown layer on top of layer, sometimes for the purpose of protecting ourselves. None of us came from the perfect home. We’ve learned there is no such thing. We’ve all experienced injuries, some physical, some emotional, and we’ve figured out how to handle these hurts and go on with our lives. To be really healthy, however, we have to unlearn many of the cures that seemed effective in the past.

Delving into our psyches to discover who we really are can be intimidating. Fortunately we have the Fourth Step to guide our efforts. Let’s not lament who we became in our struggle to grow up. Instead, let’s accept that we did the best we could. And with the help of this program, we can become who we want to be.

I write my script today. Who I choose to be is in my power. My past performance doesn’t determine my present personality.

© 1994 by Hazelden Foundation
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THE EYE OPENER #essentialsofrec #Self-improvement #Recovery


You want the world to be better? Then be better yourself. True, you are only one individual in a thickly populated world, but your life touches hundreds of others and each of those touches hundreds more. Who knows how far the influence of one smile travels or where a word of wisdom will take root? Even should your influence for good extend no further than your own skin, there will be at least one less rogue in the world.

Published by Hazelden
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Daily Tao / 38 – Adapting #essentialsofrec #Tao #Taoism #Zen



Heaven embraces the horizon.
No matter how jagged the profile,
The sky faithfully conforms.


Wherever you are, the sky constantly meets the horizon. It conforms absolutely with the earth’s surface. Changes in the earth or sky do not affect this perfect adaptation. There might be clouds, it might be night, there might be mountains or trees or even buildings on the horizon, but the relationship remains.

No matter what circumstances life may present, we must adapt exactly, whether we think the situation is good or bad. Resistance is useless. Instead, we should concentrate on perceiving whatever circumstances surround us. For example, if one is in a leadership situation, one must adapt one’s vision to that of the group; the successful leader articulates and brings consensus to the group. Being flexible and constantly adjusting to the times is one of the secrets of Tao.

We often think of the landscape as being in the foreground and the sky as the background. It is because the sky is always in the background that it can meet the outline of the foreground perfectly. If we emulate this feature of being in the background, then we too can find perfect conformity with life. Such adaptation is not passivity, however. It is concordance. It is because the sky is in the background that it is in fact supreme. So too with ourselves. If we know how to adapt, we end up being superior.
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DAILY ZEN #essentialsofrec #Zen #Buddhism


Clear, fresh Lu-yi sake
Warms on my little stove.
This evening sky may bring snow.
Come enjoy a cup with me.

- Po Chu-I (772-846)
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AROUND THE YEAR WITH EMMET FOX #essentialsofrec #Power #Recovery #Emmet #Fox


THY KINGDOM COME


Thy kingdom come (Matthew 6:10)

Man being manifestation or expression of God has a limitless destiny before him. His work is to express, in concrete definite form, the abstract ideas with which God furnishes him, and in order to do this, he must have creative power. Elsewhere, he would be merely a machine through which God worked—an automaton. But man, having the nature of his Father, remains a creator. Notice the word creator means undivided. The consciousness of man is not separated from God’s consciousness.

“Thy kingdom come” means that it is our duty to be ever occupied in helping to establish; the Kingdom of God on earth. That is to say, our work is to bring more upon this plane. That is what we are here for. The old saying, “God has a plan for every man, and he has one for you,” is quite correct.

If only you will find out the thing God intends you to do, and will do it, you will find that all doors will open to you; all obstacles in your path will melt away; you will be acclaimed a brilliant success; you will be most liberally rewarded from the monetary point of view; and you will be gloriously happy.

There is a true place in life for each one of us, upon the attainment of which we shall be completely happy, and perfectly secure. On the other hand, until we do find our true place we never shall be either happy or secure, not matter what other things we may have. Our true place is the one place where we can bring the Kingdom of God into manifestation, and truly say, “Thy kingdom cometh.”

© 1931 by Emmet Fox
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Saturday, 6 February 2016

RANDOM BIG BOOK ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS #essentialsoffrec #Recovery #God


For a brief moment, I had needed and wanted God. There had been a humble willingness to have Him with me—and He came.

~ Bill’s Story, Page 12

AA Speaker "Iron" Mike P. “Laughter is good Medicine” #essentialsofrec #Speakers #AA #Recovery



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DAILY REFLECTIONS #essentialsofrec #Recovery #patience


A LIFELONG TASK

“But just how, in these circumstances, does a fellow ‘take it easy?’ That’s what I want to know.”

~ TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 26 

I was never known for my patience. How many times have I asked, “Why should I wait, when I can have it all right now?” Indeed, when I was first presented the Twelve Steps, I was like the proverbial “kid in a candy store.” I couldn’t wait to get to Step Twelve; it was surely just a few months’ work, or so I thought! I realize now that living the Twelve Steps of A.A. is a lifelong undertaking.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services In
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JUST FOR TODAY #essentialsofrec #Awakening #Recovery #Addiction


From Rude Awakening To Spiritual Awakening

“When a need arises for us to admit our powerlessness, we may first look for ways to exert power against it. After exhausting these ways, we begin sharing with others and find hope.”
~ Basic Text, p. 79 ~

We’ve sometimes heard it said in our meetings that “rude awakenings lead to spiritual awakenings.” What kind of rude awakenings do we have in recovery? Such an awakening might occur when some undesirable bit of our behavior that we thought safely hidden away is suddenly revealed for all the world to see. Or our sponsor might provoke such an awakening by informing us that, just like everyone else, we have to work the steps if we expect to stay clean and recover.

Most of us hate to have our covers pulled; we don’t like being laid naked in full view. The experience delivers a strong dose of humility. Our first reaction to such a disclosure is usually shock and anger, yet we recognize the truth when we hear it. What we are having is a rude awakening.

Such awakenings often disclose barriers that block us from making spiritual progress in our recovery. Once those barriers are exposed, we can work the steps to begin removing them from our lives. We can begin experiencing the healing and serenity which are the preludes to a renewed awakening of the spirit.

Just for today: I will recognize the rude awakenings I have as opportunities to grow toward spiritual awakening.

© 1991 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services Inc
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TWENTY-FOUR HOURS A DAY #essentialsofrec #Sobriety #Gift #Recovery


A.A. Thought for the Day

Sometimes we try too hard to get this program. It is better to relax and accept it. It will be given to us, with no effort on our part, if we stop trying too hard to get it. Sobriety can be a free gift of God, which He gives us by His grace when He knows we are ready for it. But we have to be ready. Then we must relax, take it easy, and accept the gift with gratitude and humility. We must put ourselves in God’s hands. We must say to God: “Here am I and here are all my troubles. I’ve made a mess of things and can’t do anything about it. You take me and all my troubles and do anything you want with me.” Do I believe that the grace of God can do jor me what I could never do for myself?

Meditation for the Day

Fear is the curse of the world. Many are our fears. Fear is everywhere. I must fight fear as I would a plague. I must turn it out of my life. There is no room for fear in the heart in which God dwells. Fear cannot exist where true love is or where faith abides. So I must have no fear. Fear is evil, but “perfect love casteth out all fear.” Fear destroys hope and hope is necessary for all of humanity.

Prayer for the Day

I pray that I may have no fear. I pray that I may cast all fear out of my life.

© 1954, 1975, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation
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AS BILL SEES IT #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Motives #Families


~ Page 64

Search for Motives


Some of us clung to the claim that when drinking we never hurt anybody but ourselves. Our families didn’t suffer, because we always paid the bills and seldom drank at home. Our business associates didn’t suffer, because we were usually on the job. Our reputations didn’t suffer, because we were certain few knew of our drinking. Those who did would sometimes assure us that, after all, a lively bender was only a good man’s fault. What real harm, therefore, had we done? No more, surely, than we could easily mend with a few casual apologies.

This attitude, of course, is the end result of purposeful forgetting. It is an attitude which can be changed only by deep and honest search of our motives and actions.

~ TWELVE AND TWELVE, P. 79

© 1967 by Alcoholics Anonymous ® World Services, Inc
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EASY DOES IT #essentialsofrec #Growth #Need #People


NEEDING PEOPLE

I was never less alone than when by myself.

~ Edward Gibbon 

In order to continue to grow spiritually, we will, happily, always be among the lucky people who need people. For the rest of our lives, we will give to friends and receive from them. We will make progress together. But each must welcome the reality that he or she needs, at times, to be alone with only personal thoughts.

Such times fill the necessity for a prayer and meditation. We will never be at a loss for inspiration for contemplation. New friends said, “Welcome to our world.” We can well meditate on that wonderful world of gratitude, love, honesty, open-mindedness, willingness and other elements of spiritual progress.

I must be like a ship’s captain who constantly consults instruments to make sure I am properly on course. My “instruments” are other people. What they teach me is what feeds my meditations when I am alone. That way I am never alone.

©1990 by Anonymous. All rights reserved. Published by Hazelden.
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WALK IN DRY PLACES #essentialofrec #Positivity #Attitude


A VISION FOR YOU

A Positive Attitude


One of the methods that helps in recovery is to see yourself as a sober person living a clean life. This is the “vision for you” that the society’s founders offered in AA’s early days, and it’s still powerful today.

While being careful to avoid self-will, we can use this method with great success in living each day. Along with seeing ourselves sober, we can see ourselves living and working according to the best principles we know. We can see a business relationship improving. We can see some longstanding problems being solved. We can see a brighter side to negative situations that have persisted in spite of our best efforts to change them.

One author also talked about “seeing God on both sides of the table in any business negotiation.” We desire success, of course, but it’s also important to know that any negotiation ought to be successful for both parties. If we’re really practicing spiritual principles in all of our affairs, there should be no desire to outmaneuver another per-son in any negotiation. There is always a price that is fair and satisfactory for both parties, and there are always terms suitable for both sides.

I will go through this day visualizing it as I think it should be according to the highest and best principles I know. I will put aside self-will and see everybody benefiting from any negotiation in which I am involved.

© 1996 by Hazelden Foundation
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KEEP IT SIMPLE #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Fear #love


I am not afraid of
tomorrow, for I have seen
yesterday and I love today.


~ William Allen White 

Big changes are happening to us, but we can trust that changes will bring good things. After all, what have we got to lose? We have lived through the days and years of our addiction. Now, with the help of our Higher Power, the pain of those days has ended. We have no reason to worry.

Yet, recovery won’t make our lives perfect. Hard things still happen. But we never have to lose hope again. We never have to feel alone with our problems again.

What will come next? We don’t know the details, but we can be sure the future will be good if we stay on our path of recovery.

Prayer for the Day Higher Power

I know life holds many new things for me. Help me and protect me as I live in Your care today.

Action for the Day

Today, I’ll trust that each day of my life will bring me good. I will share this idea with one friend.

Copyright © 1988 by Hazelden Foundation
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FR. LEO'S DAILY MEDITATION #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Identity #FrLeo

IDENTITY

“Without freedom, no one really das a name.”

~ Milton Acorda 

Part of my identity involves my disease. I am an alcoholic and my name is. . . . With this recognition of who I am come the liberty and freedom to live and create in God’s world. Who I am involves what I am; in the fusion of the two is my spiritual identity.

For years, I ran from myself because I wanted to be different. I felt I would not be acceptable or good enough for you. In running from me, I lost my identity; the seed of low self-esteem was sown.

Knowing I can only be who I am brings the freedom of existence and identity. I am what I am!

Lord, You once said, “I am that I am.”
Well, so am I! 

© 2008 Leo Booth
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A DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrec #Recovery #People


Reflection for the Day

Before I became sober in the Program, I blamed all my problems on other people, or on places and things. Now I’m learning to look squarely at each difficulty, not seeking whom to “blame,” but to discover how my attitude helped create my problem or aggravate it. I must also learn to face the consequences of my own actions and words, and to correct myself when I’m wrong. Do I practice the Tenth Step by continuing to take personal inventory? When I am wrong, do I promptly admit it?

Today I Pray


May I know the blessed relief and unburdening that come when I admit I have done something wrong. May I learn—perhaps for the first time in my entire life—to take responsibility for my own actions and to face the consequences. May I learn again how to match actions with consequences.

Today I Will Remember


To take responsibility for my own actions.

© 1989 by Hazelden Foundation
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ONE DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrec #Impulsiveness


IMPULSIVENESS

“It is especially important not to make major life changes
when you are guided by emotions. If you are emotionally excited
(either in the positive or negative), wait until you calm down before taking action.”


~ Rabbi Zelig Pliskin 

When I first entered into recovery this was one of my main character defects. Since my life was out of control and spiralling downward, I acted impulsively and rarely did any thinking before acting. I wouldn’t even admit that my actions were impulsive. I would get so mad at people if they said I was impulsive.

Thanks to the steps I now have the tools that allow me to look at my actions in a new light – one of sanity and direction. Step One allowed me to admit that I was addicted to food and my life was unmanageable. Step Two allowed me to let others in to help with my problem. I was not in this alone. Step Three gave me a loving G-d to take care of growing me up and helping me with all my problems. Step Four brought things into perspective, Step Five brought healing from the shame of making those irreparable mistakes. Steps Six and Seven helped me look at what in me could be prayed about and improved. They taught me that this character defect was just a character asset being used improperly. Steps Eight and Nine brought me back into a right relationship with others. Step Ten keeps me focused in the now not the “what if’s” or “you need to’s” of the past. Sanity seemed to be coming from that awareness of living in today. Step Eleven gave me the gift of a G-d that is ever caring and always present to help me if I just do my side of the work. As a result I have a spirit of love today rather than a spirit of resentment and self-pity. Step Twelve might be the most important one because it is what keeps me in recovery and living a productive life.

Today I do not have to react immediately to every thing that happens, I can even go to my sponsor and ask for guidance. If my sponsor doesn’t have experience in that area I have a world full of people like me to go to who understand what I am experiencing. The tools give me a way to handle life on life’s terms.

One Day at a Time . . .

I will chose to live and recover in the 12 steps.

~ Judith 
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A WOMAN’S SPIRIT #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Worry #Women


Time brings summer to a close as well as winter to an end. Time ages the brilliant petals of flowers as well as prepares new buds. . . . we can trust that time will bring the good to us as well as take away the bad.

~ Amy E. Dean 

We can stop worrying. We can stop criticizing other people. But we can’t stop the passage of time. Let’s be grateful for that. Had it been possible to stop time, we might still be in unhealthy relationships, perhaps living on the edge of danger or in a blackout.

The passing of time not only moves us beyond the bad, but also advances us beyond the good. We hate to let it go. However, we need to move on and be open to new opportunities. Life is ebb and flow. We’ll have periods when problems seem rampant. At those times it helps to remember that this too shall pass. All will pass when the lesson has been gleaned. Let’s relish whatever this moment gives us and know that its time will soon be gone.

Time is my friend today. Each minute brings to me an experience I am ready for.

© 1994 by Hazelden Foundation
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THE EYE OPENER #essentialsofrec #Program #Recovery


One day we were practicing alcoholics, then in twenty-four hours we were on the Program – arrested cases.

Was it because one day we were weak and spineless and the next day we had completely reversed our character?

No, the Power had been there all the time but we had never before tapped it. Our best-intentioned friends had advised us to use our Will Power, not realizing that it was the stubbornness of our Will Power that made us persist in our drinking.

It takes a person of great will to continuously defy the pleas and threats of our combined words. No, it wasn’t Will Power we lacked, it was Won’t Power. We Won’t take that first drink.

Published by Hazelden
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Daily Tao / 37 – Discord #essentialsofrec #Tao #Taoism #Zen



When birds fly too high,
They sing out of tune.



There are times when we feel out of harmony with our surroundings, matters do not go our way, and we feel confused and disoriented. Sometimes these moments will last a day, sometimes they may last for weeks. When we feel like this, we are not integrated with the Tao, or as it is sometimes metaphorically said, Tao has flowed elsewhere.

Being constantly in touch with Tao is an ideal. There will be times of misfortune and discord from external sources. We can also fall out of synchronization with Tao through our own follies, as when we act without complete consideration. Whenever this happens, we are like the birds singing out of tune: We are mired in discord.

If we keep our patience, we can usually ride out these times. We should take action and break the stagnation if an opportunity presents itself. Whether it is waiting or acting, we should always try to bring a situation back into balance so that we can rejoin Tao.

Whenever we find ourselves linked again, we will feel relieved. We are back on track, back on target. But we should learn from each time that we lose Tao. Sometimes this is enough to prevent reoccurrences, and sometimes it is enough to buoy our hopes through future lean times. Once we know the Tao, we will recognize it again and again. We will not lose faith, even in times of discord.
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DAILY ZEN #essentialsofrec #Zen #Buddhism


My duty compels me to attempt the impossible. Even in telling you to look directly into yourself and to be unconcerned about other things, I am already burying the real thing under verbiage.
- Yun-men
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AROUND THE YEAR WITH EMMET FOX #essentialsofrec #Recovery #God


TURN WITHIN

Don’t wait about for God to act dramatically—because He probably won’t. When people expect a dramatic miracle from the outside, they are really hoping to change conditions without changing themselves; to get something for nothing, in fact, and that would be a violation of cosmic law.

Don’t wait for God to tell you what to do from the outside—He won’t

And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ (2 Thessalonians 3:5).


© 1931 by Emmet Fox
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Friday, 5 February 2016

Perseverance...


EssentialsOfRecovery

AA Speaker Joe McC. NEW “Don't Drink no Matter What” #essentialsofrec #Speakers #AA #Recovery



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RANDOM BIG BOOK ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Indecision


In thinking about our day we may face indecision. We may not be

able to determine which course to take. Here we ask God for

inspiration, an intuitive thought or a decision. We relax and take

it easy. We don't struggle. We are often surprised how the right

answers come after we have tried this for a while.

Into Action, pg. 86

DAILY REFLECTIONS #essentialsofrec #Freedom #Release #Recovery #Step2

A GLORIOUS RELEASE

“The minute I stopped arguing, I could begin to see and feel Right there, Step Two gently and very gradually began to infiltrate my life. I can’t say upon what occasion or upon what day I came to believe in a Power greater than myself, but I certainly have that belief now. To acquire it, I had only to stop fighting and practice the rest of A.A.’s program as enthusiastically as I could.”

~ TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 27 

After years of indulging in a “self-will run riot,” Step Two became for me a glorious release from being all alone. Nothing is so painful or insurmountable in my journey now. Someone is always there to share life’s burdens with me. Step Two became a reinforcement with God, and I now realize that my insanity and ego were curiously linked. To rid myself of the former, I must give up the latter to one with far broader shoulders than my own.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc

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JUST FOR TODAY #essentialsofrec #Recovery #NA #Meetings


Keep Coming Back!

“We are grateful that we were made so welcome at meetings that we felt comfortable.”

~ Basic Text p. 80 


Remember how scared we were when we walked into our first NA meeting? Even if we walked in with a friend, most of us recall how difficult it was to attend that first meeting. What was it that kept us coming back? Most of us have grateful memories of the welcome we were given and how comfortable that made us feel. When we raised our hand as a newcomer, we opened the door for other members to approach us and welcome us.

Sometimes the difference between those addicts who walk back out the door of their first meeting, never to return to NA, and the addicts who stay to seek recovery is the simple hug of an NA member. When we have been clean awhile, it’s easy to step back from the procession of newcomers—after all, we’ve seen so many people come and go. But members with some clean time can make the difference between the addict who doesn’t return and the addict who keeps coming back. By offering our phone numbers, a hug, or just a warm welcome, we extend the hand of Narcotics Anonymous to the addict who still suffers.

Just for today: I remember the welcome I was given when I first came to NA. Today, I will express my gratitude by offering a hug to a newcomer.

© 1991 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services Inc
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TWENTY-FOUR HOURS A DAY #essentialsofrec #Drink #Recovery


A.A. Thought for the Day

One thing we learn in A.A. is to take a long view of drinking instead of a short view. When we were drinking we thought more about the pleasure or release that a drink would give us than we did about the consequences that would result from our taking that drink. Liquor looks good from the short view. When we look in a package store window, we see liquor dressed up in its best wrappings, with fancy labels and decorations. They look swell. But have I learned that what’s inside those beautiful bottles is just plain poison to me?

Meditation for the Day

I believe that life is a school in which I must learn spiritual things. I must trust in God and He will teach me. I must listen to God and He will speak through my mind. I must commune with Him in spite of all opposition and every obstacle. There will be days when I will hear no voice in my mind and when there will come no intimate heart-to-heart communion. But if I persist, and make a life habit of schooling myself in spiritual things, God will reveal Himself to me in many ways.

Prayer for the Day


I pray that I may regularly go to school in things of the spirit. I pray that I may grow spiritually by making a practice of these things.

© 1954, 1975, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation
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AS BILL SEES IT #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Humility


Page 36

Humility First


We found many in A.A. who once thought, as we did, that humility was another name for weakness. They helped us to get down to our right size. By their example they showed us that humility and intellect could be compatible, provided we placed humility first. When we began to do that, we received the gift of faith, a faith which works. This faith is for you, too.

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

Where humility formerly stood for a forced feeding on humble pie, it now begins to mean the nourishing ingredient that can give us serenity.

~ TWELVE AND TWELVE ~
1. P. 30
2. P. 74

© 1967 by Alcoholics Anonymous ® World Services, Inc
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EASY DOES IT #essentialsofrec #Truth #Recovery


TRUE SELVES

To thine own self be true….

~ Shakespeare ~

If we committed suicide within the early years of recovery, we would be killing a stranger. We look back over our hopes, dreams, and ambitions of a few years ago, and they share little or no resemblance with those we have today. When we look at the people in our lives today, we see not only that they’re different people—they are entirely different kinds of people.

The person who is emerging in our recovery is one we truly like. Where has this person been all our lives? We were too scared to reveal this self to the world. Our ego put it down and called it inadequate, ugly, and good-for-nothing.

Our Program has helped us put a lid on our egos and our true self is becoming a wonderful friend. We are no mistake; we are loved by our Higher Power and we are capable of wonderful things.

I do not have to live my life according to the demands of others. I do not have to change my identity to please anything or anyone. It is to myself that I shall be true.

©1990 by Anonymous, Published by Hazelden
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WALK IN DRY PLACES #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Honesty


IS IT REALLY HONESTY?


Honesty No matter how cruel the results, the need to criticize others can be a compulsion. Such criticism is sometimes justified by the defence “Well, I had to be honest” or “It was only the truth.”

But is it really honesty to gratuitously bring out a hurtful truth? Not when the critic’s real motives are to wound and humiliate someone, not to foster self-improvement and better behaviour. Under those circumstances, the critic is really the dishonest person—for not having detected the ugly personal motives that triggered the criticism.

Honesty is closely related to humility, and the truly honest person is usually humbly aware of personal shortcomings in his or her own life. This alone makes the honest person reluctant to criticize and always careful to do it in ways that avoid inflicting pain or hurt.

Real honesty is rare, especially in people who hurt others under the guise of honesty.

With God’s help, I’ll look carefully at my motives today. It’s possible that I could be using honesty as an excuse for putting others down.

© 1996 by Hazelden Foundation
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Walk In Dry Places #essentialsofrec #Gossip #Faults #Recovery



The problem of Gossip
Breaking free from faults.


Our character defects hand on tenaciously because we secretly enjoy or need them. Gossip is an example of this problem. Most of us know that gossip is mean and malicious, yet we enjoy the spurious self-satisfaction and self-importance it gives us.

However, this feeling of self-satisfaction and self-importance is fleeting. When we engage in GOSSIP, we feel guilty, uneasy, and ashamed. We also know the fear of being gossiped about when our own backs are turned, because those who gossip will betray their friends.

Our search for real growth in sobriety should include wiliness to part company with gossip. We also should not permit ourselves to gossip indirectly; that is, by pretending to “understand” another person to induce them to share personal information, or by introducing a subject with the intention of having gossip shared with us. We can also help ourselves by turning away from gossipy news stories and magazines. We cannot grow mentally and spiritually by reading about the misbehavior and shortcomings of others.

Knowing that my true good is in keeping straight, I will go through this one day without engaging in gossip.

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KEEP IT SIMPLE #essentialsofrec #Pleasure #Recovery



Do not bite at the bait of pleasure till you know there is no hook beneath it.

~ Thomas Jefferson 

Pleasure is important in recovery. But at times we think pleasure is the answer to life’s pains. Alcohol and other drugs were what we liked best. We need to watch out so we don’t switch to another addiction—such as gambling, food, sex, or work.

The real answer to life’s pains is in having a strong spiritual center. It is also our best way to avoid another addiction. Recovery lets us turn our pain over to the care of our Higher Power. Our Higher Power can handle any problem we may have. Our program can help us with our problems too. Recovery is a three- way deal—Higher Power, program, and us.


Prayer for the Day


Higher Power, help me avoid another addiction. When I have problems, have me come to You and to my program before anything else.
Action for the Day

Today, I’ll set aside time and ask the question, “Am I headed for another addiction?” I’ll also ask my sponsor what he or she thinks.
Copyright © 1988 by Hazelden Foundation
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FR. LEO'S DAILY MEDITATION #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Money #Fr.Leo



MONEY

“Capital, as such, is not evil; it is its wrong use that is evil”

~ Mohandas K. Gandhi ~

I am not afraid to say I am concerned for my prosperity—not just in terms of health, friendship, and employment but also in terms of money. For years, I wanted to have the best and not short change myself, and I felt guilty. In sobriety, I know I deserve the best. Money, prosperity, and capital are not bad in themselves; it is how I use them that matters.

Today, as promised in recovery, things are getting better, and I am able to invest and buy wisely. I am able to appreciate and share my monetary benefits. Family, friends, and the needy can genuinely share my prosperity: The more I give away today, the more I get.

May I always use the gift of money responsibly.

© 2008 Leo Booth
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A DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Troubles


Reflection for the Day


If I am troubled, worried, exasperated, or frustrated, do I tend to rationalize the situation and lay the blame on someone else? When I am in such a state, is my conversation punctuated with, “He did..”, “She said…”, “They did…”? Or can I honestly admit that perhaps I’m at fault. My peace of mind depends on overcoming my negative attitudes and tendency toward rationalization. Will I try, day by day, to be rigorously honest with myself?

Today I Pray

May I catch myself as I talk in the third person, “He did…” or “They promised…” or “She said she would…” and listen for the blaming that has become such a pattern for me and preserves delusion. May I do a turnabout and face myself instead.

Today I Will Remember

Honesty is the only policy.

© 1989 by Hazelden Foundation
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ONE DAY AT A TIME #ESSENTIALSOFREC #RECOVERY #OA


SELF WORTH

Your worth is not established by teaching or learning.
Your worth is established by God.
Nothing you do or think or wish or make
is necessary to establish your worth.

~ Helen Schucman, scribe of “A Course in Miracles” 

I have spent the last 30 years of my life wanting more, thinking that in proving myself I would be worthy of the love and affection I deserved and this would determine my value. I was always seeking the best path to take to show everyone what I could do and that I was worthy of more of their love and praises.

Turning my life and my will over to God has allowed me to see that, no matter what I may think, in God’s eyes I am worth plenty, and this has given me so much peace. I now know that what others say or think about me is not going to make me worthy or worthless. Allowing God to run the show and doing the next right thing is all I need to do. I don’t have to concern myself if I am of value to anyone; I am of value to God, and that is all that counts.

One Day at a Time . . .

I will continue to turn to God for my strength, knowing that I need not carry the burden of proof of what I’m worth.

~ Maureen 
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ELDER MEDITATION #essentialsofrec #Sioux #Humor #Native



“Let the person I serve express his thanks according to his own bringing up and his sense of humor.”

~ Charles A. Eastman (Ohiyesa), SANTEE SIOUX ~

“It is better to give than receive.” But it doesn’t really matter if we are giving or receiving. There is an identical feeling associated with both. We get this feeling every time we receive. We can’t control when we receive gifts but we can control when we give gifts. Therefore, the more we give, the better we feel. When we are given gifts, or someone does something for us, it is the Indian way to honor this person.

Great Spirit, let me honor and be respectful to those who are good to me today.
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THE EYE OPENER #essentialsofrec #Recovery #God


Created in God’s image, with the breath of God in my nostrils, my body the Temple of the Holy Ghost, called by the Christ a child of God, surely, I could walk with angels if I could only live up to my heritage.

Man has fallen short of his goal mostly because he has not thought he could do it. He timidly denies his own divine origin; he fails to credit the existence of God in him.

He is like the man who wants to fly but not so high that he can’t keep one foot on the ground. His eyes are fixed on the skies but his feet are planted solidly on the earth.

Published by Hazelden
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Daily Tao / 36 – Vantage #essentialsofrec #Tao #Taoism #Zen



Distant ridges, far away clouds
All events come from a distance.
With a high vantage point,
Foretelling the future is elementary.



It is often superstitiously said that one who follows Tao knows magic. This is nonsense. Superiority is simply a matter of using the best of one’s abilities and being in the right position. For example, a wise person who lives high in the mountains and who is not blinded by wine, sensuality, intellectuality, poor health, or greed will be better able to see events in the distance that one who lives in a closed room, eyes on some obscure project.

A storm does not happen abruptly; it takes hours, sometimes days, to develop. Travelers do not arrive suddenly; they can be seen in the distance. Knowing things in advance is possible with a high vantage point. For this reason, the follower of Tao appears to know magic.
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DAILY ZEN #essentialsofrec #Zen #Buddhism


Just as the soft rains fill the streams,
Pour into the rivers,
And join together in the oceans,
So the power of every moment
Of your goodness flows forth to awaken
And heal all beings;
Those here now, those gone before, those yet to come.

- Traditional Buddhist blessing
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AROUND THE YEAR WITH EMMET FOX #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Emmet #Fox

WHICH ART IN HEAVEN

Having clearly established the Fatherhood of God and the Brotherhood of Man, Jesus next goes on to enlarge upon the nature of God, and to describe the fundamental facts of existence. It is the nature of God to be in heaven, and of man to be on earth, because God is Cause, and man is manifestation. Here heaven stands for God or Cause, because in religious phraseology heaven is the term for the Presence of God. The word “earth” means manifestation, and man’s function is to manifest or express God, or Cause. In other words, God is the Infinite and Perfect Cause of all things; but Cause has to be expressed, and God expresses Himself by means of Man. Man’s destiny is to express God in all sorts of glorious and wonderful ways. To express means to press outwards, or to bring into sight that which already exists implicitly. Every feature of your life is really a manifestation or expression of something in your soul.

Since it is misunderstandings about the relationship of God and man that lead to all our difficulties, it is worth any amount of trouble to correctly understand that relationship. Trying to have manifestation without Cause is atheism and materialism, and we know where they lead. “Our Father which art in heaven.”

. . . as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them . . . (2 Corinthians 6:16)

© 1931 by Emmet Fox
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Thursday, 4 February 2016

RANDOM BIG BOOK ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS #essentialsofrec #Fear #Recovery #Mastery


He spent eighteen years in running away, and then found he didn’t have to run. So he started A.A. in Detroit.
Have I ever wanted a drink during these years? Only once did I suffer from a nearly overpowering compulsion to take a drink. Oddly enough, the circumstances to take a drink and surroundings were pleasant. I was at a beautifully set dinner table. I was in a perfectly happy frame of mind. I had been in A.A. a year, and the last thing in my mind was a drink. There was a glass of sherry at my place. I was seized with an almost uncontrollable desire to reach out for it. I shut my eyes and asked for help. In fifteen seconds or less, the feeling passed. There have also been numerous times when I have thought about taking a drink. Such thinking usually began with thoughts of the pleasant drinking of my youth. I learned early in my A.A. life that I could not afford to fondle such thoughts, as you might fondle a pet, because this particular pet could grow into a monster. Instead, I quickly substitute one or another vivid scene from the nightmare of my later drinking.


~ pp. 256-257 The Man Who Mastered Fear

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions #essentialsofrec #Step5 #TwelveSteps


Step Five – “Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.”

This feeling of being at one with God and man, this emerging from isolation through the open and honest sharing of our terrible burden of guilt, brings us to a resting place where we may prepare ourselves for the following Steps toward a full and meaningful sobriety.

p. 62
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DAILY REFLECTIONS #essentialsofrec #Faith #Recovery


WHEN FAITH IS MISSING

Sometimes A.A. comes harder to those who have lost or rejected faith than to those who never had any faith at all, for they think they have tried faith and found it wanting. They have tried the way of faith and the way of no faith.

~ TWELVE STEPS AND TWELVE TRADITIONS, p. 28 


I was so sure God had failed me that I became ultimately defiant, though I knew better, and plunged into a final drinking binge. My faith turned bitter and that was no coincidence. Those who once had great faith hit bottom harder. It took time to rekindle my faith, though I came to A.A. I was grateful intellectually to have survived such a great fall, but my heart felt callous. Still, I stuck with the A.A. program; the alternatives were too bleak! I kept coming back and gradually my faith was resurrected.

Copyright © 1990 by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services Inc
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JUST FOR TODAY #essentialsofrec #Recovery #NA #Addiction



Feeling Good Isn’t the Point

“For us, recovery is more than just pleasure.”

~ Basic Text p. 42 

In our active addiction, most of us knew exactly how we were going to feel from one day to the next. All we had to do was read the label on the bottle or know what was in the bag. We planned our feelings, and our goal for each day was to feel good.

In recovery, we’re liable to feel anything from one day to the next, even from one minute to the next. We may feel energetic and happy in the morning, then strangely let down and sad in the afternoon. Because we no longer plan our feelings for the day each morning, we could end up having feelings that are somewhat inconvenient, like feeling tired in the morning and wide-awake at bedtime.

Of course, there’s always the possibility we could feel good, but that isn’t the point. Today, our main concern is not feeling good but learning to understand and deal with our feelings, no matter what they are. We do this by working the steps and sharing our feelings with others.

Just for today:
I will accept my feelings, whatever they may be, just as they are. I will practice the program and learn to live with my feelings.

© 1991 by Narcotics Anonymous World Services Inc
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TWENTY-FOUR HOURS A DAY #essentialsofrec #Recovery #AA #Alcoholics


A.A. Thought for the Day

Treating others to drinks gave us a kind of satisfaction. We liked to say, “Have a drink on me.” But we were not really doing the other people a favor. We were only helping them to get drunk, especially if they happened to be alcoholic. In A.A. we really try to help other alcoholics. We build them up instead of tearing them down. Drinking created a sort of fellowship. But it really was a false fellowship, because it was based on selfishness. We used our drinking companions for our own pleasure. In A.A. we have real fellowship, based on unselfishness and a desire to help each other. And we make real friends, not fair-weather friends. With sobriety, have I got everything that drinking’s got, without the headaches?

Meditation for the Day


I know that God cannot teach anyone who is trusting in a crutch. I will throw away the crutch of alcohol and walk in God’s power and spirit. God’s power will so invigorate me that I shall indeed walk on to victory. There is never any limit to God’s power. I will go step by step, one day at a time. God’s will shall be revealed to me as I go forward.

Prayer for the Day


I pray that I may have more and more dependence on God. I pray that I may throw away my alcoholic crutch and let God’s power take its place.

© 1954, 1975, 1992 by Hazelden Foundation
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AS BILL SEES IT #essentialsofrec #Recovery #BillW #Suffering

Page 35 

Suffering Transmuted

“A.A. is no success story in the ordinary sense of the word. It is a story of suffering transmuted, under grace, into spiritual progress.”

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

For Dr. Bob, the insatiable craving for alcohol was evidently a physical phenomenon which bedeviled several of his first years in A.A., a time when only days and nights of carrying the message to other alcoholics could cause him to forget about drinking. Although his craving was hard to withstand, it doubtless did account for some part of the intense incentive that went into forming Akron’s Group Number One.

Bob’s spiritual release did not come easily; it was to be painfully slow. It always entailed the hardest kind of work and the sharpest vigilance.

~ 1. LETTER, 1959 ~
~ 2. A.A. COMES OF AGE, P. 69 ~

© 1967 by Alcoholics Anonymous ® World Services, Inc 
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EASY DOES IT #essentialsofrec #Resentment #Recovery #Passion


RESENTMENTS

Nothing on earth consumes a man more completely as the passion of resentment.

~ Nietzsche 


Resentments are among the greatest roadblocks along the route we travel toward a more rewarding way of life. We recognize resentments for what they are: real or imagined grievances against some people, places and things. They give us an excuse to brood and plan revenge.

Resentments come to all of us at different times. We our hurting ourselves by holding on to them. It is a waste of time that could be spent enjoying the more positive aspects of our lives.

Our Program can teach us how to respond with love, understanding, and compassion to the people, places, and things that displease us. We learn not to fight the windmills of resentment.

Today I’ll remember, resentment doesn’t hurt others; it only hurts me. Time wasted in getting even can never be used in getting ahead.

©1990 by Anonymous, Published by Hazelden
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WALK IN DRY PLACES #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Honesty

THE REWARDS OF HONESTY

Honesty

Sometimes we think that honesty is simply too painful and demanding—all sacrifice with no gain. If we are completely honest with ourselves, however, the results can only be positive.

What are the advantages of being entirely honest about our motives and feelings? One benefit is that we never will have to face the disillusionment and humiliation that come from self-deception. Surely we had enough of that while drinking.

Honesty also speaks for itself. People know intuitively when a person is completely honest, and they are drawn to that person because of it. An honest AA member—one who has truly faced personal faults—also becomes an example to others.

The honest person has self-respect and a clear conscience. In real honesty, there is no inner struggle to keep up appearances or to pretend we are anybody except ourselves.

Honesty makes us comfortable rather than pained, relaxed rather than anxious, and decisive rather than confused. These are rich rewards for people who once lived in the false world of alcoholism.

I’ll try to be honest in all things today. In any case, I will at least be honest with myself about my true motives and feelings.

© 1996 by Hazelden Foundation 
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KEEP IT SIMPLE #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Moments


We do not remember days, we remember moments.

~ Cesare Pavese 

It’s the moment that’s important. Each moment holds choice. Our spirits grow through working our program moment to moment. Moments lead to days, days to years, and years to a life of honest recovery.

It will be the moments of choice that we remember. The moment we call a friend instead of being alone. The moment we decide to go for a walk instead of arguing with our partner. The moment we decide to go to an extra meeting instead of drinking or using other drugs. These moments lead us to our Higher Power. These moments teach us that we’re human, that we need others. At these moments, we know others care about us— our joys, and our struggles.

Prayer for the Day

Higher Power, help me remember that my recovery is made up of many moments of choice.

Today’s Action


I’ll look back over the last twenty-four hours. What moments come to mind? Why were they important to me?

Copyright © 1988 by Hazelden Foundation
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FR. LEO'S DAILY MEDITATION #essentialsofrec #Intelligence #Recovery #Intelligence



INTELLIGENCE
“The brighter you are, the more you have to learn.”

~ Don Herald ~

The one thing I have learned in sobriety is how much I do not know! I thought I knew a lot about God, only to discover that I had made God a prisoner of the Church. Once I was willing to free God from my prison, I discovered a freedom and an awareness that constantly fascinate and astound me.

Today I see that the glory of God shines within my pain, within my loneliness and confusion. The acceptance of my disease is the key to my recovery. Today any suffering enables me to discover a realistic spirituality— and it is okay to be confused!

With each new day, let me learn something, even if it is that I have not learned anything that day!

© 2008 Leo Booth
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A DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrec #Recovery #illness


Reflection for the Day

Rare is the recovering alcoholic who will now dispute the fact that denial is a primary symptom of the illness. The Program teaches us that alcoholism is the only illness which actually tells the afflicted person that he or she really isn’t sick at all. Not surprisingly, then, our lives as practicing alcoholics were characterized by endless rationalization, countless alibis and, in short, a steadfast unwillingness to accept the fact that we were, without question, bodily and mentally different from our fellows. Have I conceded to my innermost self that I am truly powerless over alcohol?

Today I Pray

May the Program’s First Step be not half-hearted for me, but a total admission of powerlessness over my addiction. May I rid myself of that first symptom—denial—which refuses to recognize any other symptom of my disease.

Today I Will Remember


Deny denial.

© 1989 by Hazelden Foundation
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ONE DAY AT A TIME #essentialsofrec #OA #Recovery #Overeaters


LAUGHTER

Laughter can be more satisfying than honor;
more precious than money;
more heart-cleansing than prayer.

~ Harriet Rochlin ~

For as long as I can remember I’ve always been a serious person. I can’t remember ever doing something just for fun or to have a laugh. There always had to be a purpose for what I did in my life, or else it was of no value. As for being able to laugh at myself, that wasn’t even in my frame of reference. I was so super-sensitive that I’d get upset if someone made fun of me, as it would always make me feel “less than” or stupid.

So when I came into the doors of my first Twelve Step meeting, I was amazed that, even though all the people I met had problems around food, they were still able to look at their mistakes and realize that that didn’t make them a bad person. But even more heart-warming was the fact that I heard laughter in those rooms. Before, I’d always thought that when someone laughed at what I said, they were laughing at me, and that would reinforce my feelings of inadequacy.

The lessons I’m learning here are not easy ones and there are still times when my old behaviors of being overly sensitive creep in, but I know that recovery is a process, and as I grow in the program, it will get better.

One day at a time …

As I practice the program and work the steps, I am becoming more able to laugh at myself and not always look at the dark side of life. What a gift it has been to start enjoying life!

~ Sharon 
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ELDER'S MEDITATION OF THE DAY #essentialsofrec #CHEROKEE #Elders #Native



“We say there is a right time and place for everything. It’s easy to say, but hard to understand. You have to live it to understand it.”

~ Rolling Thunder, CHEROKEE ~

The Elders tell us there is a right time and a right place. Don’t plant seeds in the fall- wrong time. One way we find out about the right time and right place is our experience. If we are lucky, we have a few friends who will share their experience; this will help us too. The best way is to let God guide us. Only He knows the right time and the right place. So we need to pray and ask Him for guidance.

Great Spirit, show me patience so I can live in the right time and right place.
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A WOMAN’S SPIRIT #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Women #Miracles

Absolute miracles happen when I can trust enough and be vulnerable enough to get honest feelings out of my mouth to another person.

~ Kathy Kendall 

Seldom do we know in detail what we or others need at any moment. All of us harbor desires and dreams, but they are frequently fanciful and motivated by our not-so-healthy egos.

Nevertheless, we want to grow and that’s good. We want to feel more secure in our journey. We will have made real progress when we have learned to trust that what we need is contained in every experience, every conversation.

We are miracle makers, each of us. Though much that happens between us seems unimportant, none of it is accidental. We can’t be sure what information is needed by our sister travelers. We can know only that God has brought us together. If we share with honesty and genuine compassion, we participate in God’s plan.

I can trigger a miracle in someone else’s life today by being honest and compassionate in every shared experience.

© 1994 by Hazelden Foundation
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THE EYE OPENER #essentialsofrec #Recovery #Spiritual


In the hurry and press of our everyday living, too many of us fail to stop occasionally to allow our souls to catch up with us. We have no time to think upon those things which are of lasting value. We reserve our spiritual thinking for Sunday mornings and meeting nights, oblivious of the fact we must live every day. Find or make time this very day for just a minute with the Man Upstairs. Remember you need Him and He needs you.

Published by Hazelden
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Daily Tao / 35 – Utilization #essentialsofrec #Zen #Tao #Taoism



Kites harness the force of the wind.
They express our intent,
But they cannot change the wind.



A person with a kite can make it dip, turn, and flutter at will. An expert can even use a fighting kite and engage another’s until one is cut loose. It’s fun flying a kite, feeling the gigantic tug on the end of your line. Sometimes the wind is so strong that it will nearly lift you off the ground. When you harness the forces of nature, you harness something quite powerful.

This is an example of the proper utilization of Tao. It is taking advantage of natural forces. It means accepting the way they work, and then finding a way to borrow their power. It does not mean trying to change or circumscribe things. If the wind is not blowing our kite the way we want, we cannot change it. We can only borrow its energy. When initiative and natural forces are combined, there is true harmony.
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