STEP FIVE Alcoholics Anonymous (1)

SELF-LOATHING

SOBRIETY SABOTAGE

STEP 5 AA

STEP FIVE-There is a huge difference between the healthy emotional processes of steps 4 & 5 versus struggling for unattainable perfection, failing to live up to it then relentlessly beating ourselves to a pulp in our heart and mind for our guilt.

It is flawed thinking to surmise that somehow if we flog ourselves enough for our perceived imperfection THEN we will be good and acceptable to our Lord and our fellows.    The pure and anointed process God has set down to relieve our guilt by confession (or fifth step as we label it in AA) works famously to relieve self-hate.   The trouble is most self-haters don’t realize that it is themselves that they hate.  Because of our ability to survive emotionally we put blame quickly into action.  Then it becomes the world’s fault that we are miserable.  Oh well….no not “oh well”, this emotional survival process that so many of us humans engage in of blinding our self-awareness is at the core of every sick murderous and violent act against mankind that we can imagine.  Plainly said, blame is at the core of our worlds straying from Love.WE, THE CHILDREN OF A CREATOR ABSOLUTELY DO NOT HAVE THE INALIENABLE RIGHT TO CONDEMN OR PUNISH OURSELVES or anyone else. The decision to punish or not to punish lies in the realm of our Higher Power and the law.   Furthermore it is a common and subconscious illusion that self-abuse will render us pure and perfect…probably rooted in childhood punishments.  Interestingly my spiritual teacher whom was a missionary, a reverend, a grandmother, and a friend once informed me that “there is a counterfeit for every spiritual principal in existence on our Earth”.  Surely our former destructive methods of cleansing ourselves by self-abuse (even when it is done subconsciously) is surely the counterfeit of the pure and enlightening act of confession or “Step Five”.  And if your a religious human who prays often.  Do not be fooled by merely confessing all your wrongs to God and leaving out the “human” angle.  There will be little humility gained by confessing faults only to God.  This keeps false pride and sick secrets snugly in place in our hearts.  Confessing to a human and God are both vital to recovery.

Step Eleven

STEP ELEVEN AND NATURE

GREAT PLACE TO DO STEP ELEVEN MEDITATION, AT THE BEACH, OR AT A CHURCH THAT HAS A GROTTO.

Step Eleven in the Big Book can be done at a deep level or a very shallow one.  Find a place in nature to sit still and seep your Higher Power with your heart.  Prayer and meditation are so beneficial to anyone trying to stay sober.  Only God can heal a broken heart by His mighty Spirit.  Labels are not important.  God looks upon the heart.

HOW TO MEDITATE   

This is one of the few posts that has copyright laws in place.  It was taken from the the book “PARADISE FOR THE HELLBOUND” BY Laura R. Edgar  You are welcome to copy it but please remember to give credit to the writer.  Thank you

 

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.”

 

The places that I go during meditation are a “secret place” where God abides where it is just He (She,It,The I Am) and I.

 

I start by finding a quiet serene place away from distractions.  I light a candle and drink some water sometimes I light incense.  Often I use my favorite precious stones/crystals as listed in Revelation chapter 21:10-21 to aid in my meditation, Jasper stone sapphire, chalcedony, emerald, sardonyx, sardius, chrysolite, beryl, topaz, chrysoprasus, jacinth, and amethyst.  John the Revelator who wrote the Book of Revelation mentions all these stones as “most precious”.  Sometimes I put a stone on my forehead or my throat.  There are seven spots on the human body believed by many through the ages to be centers of spiritual power or energy power points of my body.  My body is the temple of God and the stones are most precious therefore, I do not accept that using such sacred and natural objects to seek God is evil or witchcraft.  I believe using crystals just makes for a stronger connection to the beyond.  They are tools like many other tools used by man to aid in spiritual exercises.  Such as anointing oil, prayer cloths, crosses, statues, etc.  The goal is to empty my mind so I can hear God’s direction and receive whatever blessings await me supernaturally.

 

Lying down with my crystals on or around me I consider my most recent interactions with people because these thoughts are usually foremost in my mind.  After processing my interactions if need be I clear up any guilt or shame by repentance and plan my amends if merited.  Once I have cleared my conscience I spread my arms and invite Jesus and the Holy Spirit in, I pray for God to help me meditate.  I ask God that I may His will and to bestow upon me the power to do His will.  If I fear Satan or his demons, I pray the protection of the blood of Christ.  I then pray the Lords prayer visualizing every sentence in my mind.  I picture God in Heaven; I picture His kingdom alive in me and on Earth and so on.  When my mind drifts toward worries of this world I reel it back in and start again, each sentence of the Lords Prayer can be visualized.  I picture myself kneeling in front of the throne of God as I pray the Lords prayer.  I may have to reel my mind in several times to get to the end of the mantra.  The key is perseverance to make my mind stay focused on the prayer mantra.

 

I remember when I first started practicing meditation, as I laid still I felt such horrible energy clawing inside me.  Candidly put it felt like I had an alien or demon inside my body.  It was so hard to be still with no chaos or confusion to distract me from my feelings.  I pressed on sometimes I had to moan to release the energy inside my body.  Sometimes memories came up that needed to be resolved or processed.  I use the exercises of writing and sharing when this happens.  Meditation will give you the self-knowledge to clear up emotional issues and clear up your chakras.

 

I practiced meditation like this for quite some time until I was able with God’s help to clear my mind of all clutter and noise quickly and easily.  When my mind became quiet, I began to have visions and travel to beautiful, exciting places.  After a couple years of practice, I travelled to a place during meditation where I met my spirit guides.  My Guides are a group of beings whose purpose is to help me fulfill the will of God in my life.  My Spirit Guides are appointed by God to make my life easier and more fulfilling.  We all have them though most people do not stop and seek long enough to meet them.

 

I practice meditation as often as I want.  It is best for me if I do it on a regular basis.  If I get away from it for a while, it takes time to clear the clutter and noise from my mind to get back to a quiet mind.  When I let up on meditation, I tend to become more worrisome, agitated, and impatient.  I react to people abruptly and have less self-restraint and control.  When I let up on meditation, I may become fearful again.  It is amazing how much it benefits me when I lie on my bed, spread my arms, and show God all of my heart.  Meditation is communing with God.  Meditation is listening to God.  Meditation is seeking God at a higher level.

 

First Corinthians 1:9

“God [is] faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.”

 

Remember the only explanation we have of why we were created is to commune with God.  Meaning to glorify Him, to praise him, to cry to Him and to listen and talk to Him.

 

Let Him get to know you at a deeper level.   We will never be free of human nature while we are human.  It is ok that we are not perfect before God.  We can still approach Him dragging our guilt and shame behind us.  I notice many times when I get close to God in this way it provokes crying and then I feel such relief from stress and worry.

 

Meditation starts with being able to focus on one thing, the mantra.  Then the next phase you will notice with your minds eye is the presence of a black space or black energy this is the place of doors, windows and who knows what all.  There is nothing for us in that region of black except the doors God is pleased to let us walk through.  Let your mind travel past the dark into the lighted visions of beauty and Hope.

 

Once you allow yourself to take time and seek God in this way, your astral-travel will come naturally.  Just as a child learns to walk, we can learn to travel with our higher awareness one-step at a time.

 

Supernatural travel starts in the black…  I want to call that black “outer space” but It may be a place of consciousness void of actual physical “space” by our earthly terms however it looks like dark outer space.  I usually see crosses and triangles in the black, which represent my own personal symbols of Christ and religion.  The triangle is about fellowship, unity, and sharing what God has done for me.  You will probably see something similar that has meaning for you in that place.  These shapes are somehow the door which I pass through into other realms.  Focus on your door then allow your mind to move on from there. You will not have to travel through the black darkness to get to the light it is more as if you hit hyper-drive into God’s realm in a split second once you find your personal door.

 

Sometimes I fall asleep during meditation that is good I must have needed the rest.


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 THIS MIGHT BE A KAPOK TREE

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 GREAT PLACE TO DO STEP ELEVEN MEDITATION, AT THE BEACH, OR AT A CHURCH THAT HAS A GROTTO.

 

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DSCN3408RecoveryFarmhouse.com all right reserved, “Paradise for the Hellbound” copyright, Laura R. Edgar 2003copyright

 

 

How do we increase our Faith?

 FAITH

SPIRITUAL GROWTH

step eleven

Increase faith

STEP ELEVEN  If we don’t communicate with God then how will our faith ever be increased past the initial morsel that is given to us at the dawn of our lives?  “Each man is given a measure of faith” so it is written in the Holy Bible.    

Some manage to increase their faith when going through trials at which time they pray and ask God for a safe outcome to the adversity they are facing.  I am guessing that not everyone reaches out to a Higher Power when facing adversity but apparently many do since the act has a label called “foxhole prayers”.   For those of us that do pray, when the outcome does turn out as we requested we are blessed to have our faith increased.  And when the outcome does not go our way we just reason out that the answer from God was a “no”.

But surely we can have our faith increased by other means besides foxhole prayers.  One way to do that is by meditation as suggested in Step Eleven.  Meditation is a quieting of the mind in an effort to seek out and become closer to our Higher Power.  Meditation will increase our faith, tolerance, and patience if by nothing more than training ourselves to be still. 

It’s 12 step appropriate to start our meditation with a prayer to “improve our conscious contact with God as we understand God praying for the knowledge of His, (Her, It’s) will for us and the power to carry that out.  Some people pray to be protected during their meditation.  Seems a little strange that we would need protection while embarking on a spiritual exercise to seek our Higher Power (the next right thing) but here’s the reasoning behind it. 

It’s a fact that most humans use very little of their brains…10% is the common number.  It has been shown by MRI result that those who meditate have light in parts of their brain that those who don’t meditate do not have.  So who can say what could happen during meditation in the way of astral-travel, data collection, visions, possible alien encounters, dream-travel and so-on that’s why a little prayer to our Higher Power for protection can’t hurt.  

Hypothetically some people have faith enough or a lack thereof that they don’t fear any aspects of meditation therefore have no need to ask for protection.  Clarification-total lack of faith in God would dictate that meditation will get us nowhere except to places within our own mind.   Or thinking could be that if astral-travel is possible the universe is made up of nothing but pleasant fluffy fairy beings that dance to and fro and that even the word “supernatural” equals Love and goodness so there’s no need for protection prayers. 

Alternatively belief in the supernatural and a faith in God implies that there are evil spiritual beings as well as good and that these evil entities, perhaps demons would do harm to us if they had half a chance.  Some Christians for instance believe that deep meditation can open a person up to evil.  However given that knowledge a person with a strong faith will know that they are protected and safe during meditation. 

Some of us were raised by parents who glorified and gave more credence to the evil and scary supernatural power of Satan than the supernatural and miraculous power of a good and righteous God and so we pray for protection when we endeavor on our supernatural quest to find a deeper connection with God.  

What other ways are there to increase our faith besides communication with our Higher Power?  We who are in the program of AA and NA are blessed and present to watch those who come in after us broken and afraid.  We then see them restored to not only sanity, but to health and happiness in a miraculous way due to the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and its members. 

This experience also increases our faith and warms our hearts.

 

 

 

SPONSORSHIP & A LUST FOR POWER & CONTROL

SPONSORSHIP

SELF-ESTEEM

THE 12 TRADITIONS

TRADITION 2

“For out group purpose there is but one ultimate authority-a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.  Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern., 

 

Sponsorship & a lust for power & control can go hand in hand if we are not carefully self-aware.  Sin is an uncomfortable word for many addicts probably because of being judged harshly by religious people in our past.  After all, power over others can be very seductive and addicting.  We need to be very careful and stay mindful of this when we sponsor newcomers.  Being an authority in a church has its own sinful temptations, and pitfalls such as the obsession to control others.  

Usurping authority over others, and the elation we humans often get when we are allowed to manage another person’s life is often downright luscious to our flesh.   The desire to play God is the exact reason why our early founders of Alcoholics Anonymous set up the 12 traditions the way they did.  Bill W.  and the rest of the early members knew that power corrupts and that if addicts got a taste of power it would be all she wrote for AA.  

Greed and the lust for money are right up there with the hunger for control and authority.  It is written in the Bible that; “The Love of money is the root of much evil.”  This scripture gets mis-quoted probably more than any.   It’s the “Love “of money rather than the Love of God which turns our insides into a den of thieves and makes us sick.   One solution for these greedy & selfish fear based character flaws are to realize that we aren’t trusting God when we struggle for more, more, more and simple giving. 

To combat greed we give away something that we absolutely do not want to give away like a hundred dollar bill or something we covet.  Giving away what we covet takes sins power and smashes it into smithereens.  It also frees us from our own fears that drive us to selfishness.    Giving away something we value or covet will curtail possibly even cure our greed.  Giving away that which we don’t want that bad anyway won’t work in the same way. 

It’s a spiritual law that is obvious to the spiritually minded furthermore Jesus spoke about this Karmic law  in the New Testament when a ruler asked Him how or what he needed to do to have eternal life.  The man was very rich and Jesus suggested to him that he give all his material possessions away and follow Him. (Luke 18:22)  I believe the ruler walked away saddened by the instructions unable to carry the directions out.  

We also need to firstly not hand over our power by asking others to make our decisions or take on our responsibilities and second we should never tell our sponcee’s what they must do.  Our sponcee’s are sick and they oftentimes will want to turn over their power of choice to someone of authority like a sponsor.  No doubt if we start making their choices for them at some point the power they gave us will get snatched back and we will be left wondering why we feel like crap.  Not to mention when the choices we have made for them don’t turn out well we will become their beast of blame.  Best we help them by going over their options, possibilities, and then they can make an educated choice and reap their own consequences called self-esteem and confidence.

AT A YEAR SOBER WE ASK; WHATS WRONG WITH ME????

STEP THREE….LETTING GO & LETTING GOD

AT A YEAR SOBER WE ASK; WHATS WRONG WITH ME????

 Real Recovery doesn’t always feel or look like quality sobriety

“If anybody knew how I really felt inside they would know that I am not doing well in my recovery. I feel like something is wrong with me. I must be doing something wrong! I am sober but I am depressed, I am sober but I still have anxiety attacks. I mustn’t tell anyone how I feel or they will know I am not really emotionally sober. I don’t have quality recovery how could I if I did I would not feel like this.”Hmm??? Ever hear anybody share the above statements in a meeting? Most likely you answered no. However the above scenarios show the way that many addicts think and feel even though they have worked the steps and regularly work steps ten through twelve.WHY????????????

First let’s define this type of thinking and what it’s connected to in us. Let’s explore the dreaded word, feeling, and thought called “SHAME”. Alcoholism & addiction have been explored and painstakingly researched by many experts who have finally defined addiction as a “shame based disease”.In the Big Book it is written that alcohol is but a symptom of an underlying problem. And that we alcoholics suffer from spiritual and emotional maladies. So what is this underlying malady and how do I fix it? In “How it Works” it is written that some of us suffer from “grave emotional disorders”. It says that those who suffer from these disorders can also get better and stay sober. Well guess what ALL ADDICTS AND ALCOHOLICS SUFFER FROM EMOTIONAL DISORDER in my opinion. It takes some serious open-mindedness and lots of journaling, meetings, therapy, working with a sponsor, prayer and meditation to get in touch with and admit to ourselves our underlying malady of shame.Shame tells us that we are not worthy of a Higher Powers Love. Shame tells us that we don’t deserve anything good. Shame tells us that we are bad, wrong, evil, and that we must keep who we are a secret or we will never have anything we want or need. Starting the day from the platform of shame blocks us off from so many good and spiritual things. It causes us to have to justify and defend ourselves. It causes us to be in defensive mode. It shuts us off from Love. Shame shuts us off from God even in our prayers we block off certain parts of our heart hiding parts of us from our Higher Power in hopes that even He, It, She will Love us if we pretend to be someone we are not.
What’s the solution?

We must first realize that we are human and we will never be perfect as long as we are human so we can never ever approach God as a perfect and totally worthy person. We must quit hiding and keeping secrets from God and man.
ACTION:

We should lay on the bed or floor stretch our arms out as far as we can to our sides focus on God and expose all of our heart to God. We should approach our Higher Power in all honesty and transparency and say; “here I am just as I am, I want a relationship with You I need your help.”

We are our Higher Powers creation and we were created INCOMPLETE that’s why we feel so incomplete. Not because we are bad, wrong, unworthy etc. but because that’s the way we were made. We are only complete & fulfilled when we exercise an ongoing relationship with our creator. Fulfillment, enlightenment, encouragement, comfort, and healing are some of the things we get from opening up to our creator. That’s why the steps work, they show us how to have a spiritual connection with our creator.

WE ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO FEEL GOOD ALL THE TIME
even when working the steps correctly, we were not created that way. It doesn’t mean something is horribly wrong with us.
So, we acknowledge and honor our feelings no matter what they are and we continue on with our daily lives in spite of them. We don’t let our feelings create Kayos in our minds. “THE

NEGATIVE THOUGHTS THAT ATTACH THEMSELVES TO MY FEELINGS ARE NOT FACTS.” FEELINGS themselves ARE FACTS because they are very real to us and come from our hearts experiences. It’s the thoughts that get us in trouble. If we don’t honor our feelings and journal them, talk about them then we are dishonoring and invalidating who we are. Our unhappy feelings come from somewhere real and often times we need to do some crying, some screaming (not at anyone) some beating the bed with our fists to get these intense feelings out in a healthy way so they don’t come out sideways at other people.
Addictions spell emotional trauma and that trauma needs an outlet. Emotional trauma does not have to mean that we were abused as children by adults. Emotional trauma can result from emotional neglect and a lack of nurturing as children. Deep hurts from rejection and abandonment don’t go away just because we are grown. We usually blame other people for the way we feel we are confused because other people trigger intense feelings (from past events) that live in us. Blaming others for the way we feel gives us temporary relief but will never ever help us heal.

All humans have a capacity to be hurt emotionally by others, if we do not have a healthy outlet for hurt it will evolve into anger and continue to live inside us until we connect with it and express it in a healthy non-attacking way.
When deep emotional hurt does not have an outlet it turns to anger which in turn can evolve into rage.

Depression is anger without enthusiasm
it happens when we are just too worn down by our own anger & we haven’t the energy to be angry anymore. We have not processed our anger we have merely changed our focus so the anger evolves into depression.
ACTION: Putting our emotions in order by talking about our feelings with someone who won’t shut us down and will be empathic is healing. Journaling is healing, moaning in guttural sounds to let hurts out is healing. Putting on our shoes and getting out of the house to do 12 step work or meetings is healing. Crying is healing. Screaming when we hurt so bad emotionally that words will not suffice is healing.

WE DO NOT RAMBLE ABOUT HOW BAD OTHER PEOPLE ARE AND WHAT THEY DID TO US UNLESS IT’S ON PAPER. WE ONLY NEED TO SAY IT ONCE OUTLOAD, IN A MEETING AND AGAIN TO OUR SPONSOR OR EMPATHIC LISTENER. It’s the talking about “how it made me feel” that heals us. It made me feel worthless for example or it made me feel dirty etc.
I am talking about healing core issues that are the cause of our relentless effort to numb out our feelings and our life. But let’s face it had we really wanted to be dead we would have gone through with suicide. What we really want is balanced and orderly emotions not lack of emotions.

We woman will die if we don’t talk about the way we feel. Criticizing others, character assassination and living in blame are character defects that we should not confuse with the expression it takes for healthy emotional order.

ACTION: What about anxiety? The fourth step in the Big Book has an exercise called the “fear list”. We write down all our core fears, we explore them.

REMEMBER FEARS COME FROM OUR HEART AND DO NOT HAVE TO BE LOGICAL. Just because our mind knows we don’t have to fear something if our heart fears it we should recognize it and honor it. Furthermore we should not let our shame throw us into the deep river of denial. Our fears need expression if we want to stop the anxiety attacks. So we write all our fears down and consider them. We realize we are not trusting God and that our faith is sometimes little if we are in fear. So rather than sticking our fear in the “denial box” we stick it in the “God Box”. We then ask God to remove our fears and help us to rely on him, it, or her.
Anxiety is intense fear that we have buried rather than expressing it, perhaps it’s a fear associated with trauma. After all who wants to be labelled “chicken shit”, “spiritually unfit” or other judgmental words to label he who has fear? But guess what? Every human on the face of the earth has fear it’s just learning how to express it and taking action in spite of it that turns it into courage or emotional growth. Intense fears need to be expressed and released (not dwelled on) so they don’t live in us and turn into intense anxiety.

THOUGHT PROVOKING QUESTIONS: Why is screaming a natural response to intense fear? Screaming releases boatloads of endorphins and is a solution to fear. Why do some soldiers come back from the war with PTSD and others don’t who have the exact same experiences? Because often times we were taught that our expressions of fear and hurt and anger are wrong, bad, weak, stupid, ugly, disgusting etc. We were taught that our healthy emotional expression was wrong by some adult when we were very young and so we believed them and we became ashamed and shut down our own healthy emotional process.
What’s the solution to emotional disorder? Drinking and drugging of course! Yes I am serious. What happens when drinking and drugging quits working because of the consequences? Find a way to express and process our emotions in a healthy non-attacking, non-hurtful, non-destructive way.

God gave us vocal cords for a reason we can either save our face or save our ass! It’s time to let the emotional child within us out of the box so she, he can have a half way decent recovery.
Disclaimer: I own two supernatural boxes. One is called the “GOD BOX” the other is called the “DENIAL BOX”. I have and do use both.
 

 

 

Early Recovery topics “The good is the enemy of the best”

HOW IT WORKS & WHY IT WORKS

NINETY MEETINGS IN NINETY DAYS

Early Recovery topics

Recovery sabotage… is very common in early recovery and happens more often than not.  Let’s face it, most of us have tried and tried again to stay sober with many failed attempts.  Each failure we beat our self-image to a pulp and leave our self-esteem in the gutter. 

“Recovery ain’t for sissies” they say, but hey, screw that!  We are not sissies!  Nor are we “bad people” who make a conscious effort to hurt our loved ones and ourselves by our addictions.  We are sick people trying to get well!

Therefore folks, it helps to know one of the most insidious sub-conscious sabotage techniques that our addict mind uses to keep us sick.  The good IS the enemy of the best.  In early recovery ninety meetings in ninety days is a must.  We know that we should take this suggestion because it worked for so many people in the rooms that have multiple years sober. 

Usually what happens is we get a couple weeks sobriety under our belt and we are living responsibly so we miss meetings to do some “good” thing such as…take our children to the fair because we have neglected giving them attention and time for so long.  Or we might finally get a job and put that before our daily meeting.  Or maybe we are finally getting some work done around the house that we have procrastinated on for years.  Perhaps we are finally considering visiting our parents to tell them how good we are doing now.

These types of tasks are the only ones that can logically pull us away from meetings because we can justify that they are “good tasks”  “responsible activities” and we are doing the “right thing” by putting them before our meetings. ……….NOT!

The thing is if we do not attend the ninety meetings in ninety days our new-found responsible behavior will quickly fall by the wayside.  To build a truly responsible life, one of which we are no longer hurting ourselves emotionally, beating down our self-esteem and destroying our relationships we must stay sober.  And to stay sober we must build a foundation in recovery by attending allot of meetings initially.  Why??? 

  1. To build relationships with sober friends. 
  2. To build new habits and behavior patterns. 
  3. To learn the solutions for emotional meltdowns. 
  4. To establish a knowledge of the Big Book.
  5. To get a sponsor and work the steps. 

Put it this way my sacred and lovely fellow addicts who deserve a kick-ass & wonderful life.   Our brain needs a new program, it needs re-wired.   Rewiring of the brain is absolutely possible and it does happen allot but it takes installing a new program and the download time for the sober program is lengthy. 

The initial download for the installation of a sober brain is ninety days of daily meetings.  After that you can cut down to four meetings a week if you like.  Then somewhere during that four meetings a week if we work the 12 steps including a fifth step with a sponsor we will no longer view meetings and the program as a pain in the ass.  Fulfillment and enlightenment will occur along with an amazing psychic change and we will take hold of the solutions to addiction by doing them.

So when we have a “good” and “responsible” task that we think is best to put before our meetings; buyer beware!  It could be our addict mind cunningly and insidiously plotting our demise!  After all, we are too smart to fall for missing a vital life changing meeting just so we can watch Netflix or take out the garbage.

 Footnote:  Bill W. said “the good is the enemy of the best” somewhere in our AA literature.  I will confirm at a later date.  If you have the info please post it below.

A Little Apology

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To all registered readers of Recovery Farmhouse we want to apologize for a horrible glitch that was in the website.   Due to super-slow load time on header pictures we have discontinued the social “share” buttons for Facebook, Google, etc.  

So sorry you guys had to suffer through such slow loading times YIKES!   Blame it on procrastination we were duck hunting!  We are recovering addicts too and took way too long to straighten it out.  

Anyway, until we can identify a plugin that won’t slow down the system there will not be any “share buttons” on the site.

Thank you readers you are awesome!  We Love you!  Sincerely Recovery Farmhouse.

Are our animals simply pets or are they Ordained & Anointed Ministers?

 SPIRITUAL PETS?

RECOVERY

PROVIDENCE

Are our pets ordained by God sent directly to us from heaven?  Perhaps they are reincarnated x-humans who are doing penance.  Perhaps we ourselves have a ministerial calling of sorts and our pets are one of our allotted spiritual tools to help keep our attitude and spirits positive.  Maybe our little fury friends signed a heavenly contract with us when we where in heaven still Spirit to encourage us to keep on keep-in’ on.We should be sure to remember that these creatures are capable of Loving unconditionally like few others can.  This in itself begs the question; are they actually higher spiritual beings than we assume.Twelve step work deploys us in a direction of helping and encouraging the still suffering alcoholic and addict.   However, we need a dose of love and encouragement ourselves if we are to continue comforting others with a positive attitude and so our little dogs get us up and out on walks through the paths of the Earths natural beauty.Our pets jump on our bellies in the morning with their dogie or kittie smile just to wake us up to start the brand new day.   They make us smile.  

It has been proven by psychological studies that people with animals live longer.  When we pet our little friend they pull affection out of us which magically returns to us in a good way.

Giving is always better than receiving even if we cannot understand how, perhaps when we pet our little begging animal it is an act of giving and our spiritual Karma is refreshed and renewed.And so the great mysteries of spirituality should never ever be boxed into carnal ideals.  Meaning all of the above is very possible

 

 

 

 

What is “The Will of God”?

What is the will of God?

STEP ELEVEN

EMOTIONAL SOBRIETY

will of god 2

WHAT IS THE WILL OF GOD?

“Thy will be done” that’s a tough order in the mind of a control hungry addict!  That’s a tough order for any human for that matter unless they are thoroughly convinced that God’s will, will feel better than their own.  And what’s more, what is God’s will anyway and where does it fit into the steps?  Well most of us are familiar with the Eleventh Step prayer that is all about God’s will and our own self-centered dysfunction.

 

Eleventh Step Prayer of Saint Francis

 

“Lord make me a channel of thy peace — that where there is hatred, I may bring love — that where there is wrong, I may bring the spirit of forgiveness — that where there is discord, I may bring harmony — that where there is error, I may bring truth — that where there is doubt, I may bring faith — that where there is despair, I may bring hope — that where there are shadows, I may bring light — that where there is sadness, I may bring joy.

 

Lord, grant that I may seek rather to comfort than to be comforted — to understand, than to be understood — to love, than to be loved.

 

For it is by self-forgetting that one finds. It is by forgiving that one is forgiven. It is by dying that one awakens to Eternal Life…

 

AMEN

 

Starting the day with this prayer is a good way to test if Gods will really is better than our own.  Experience is what strengthens faith not just words.  Meaning; we can be told all day long that God’s will is best and halfway believe it but if we pray this prayer and then reap the benefits of fulfillment, enlightenment, some joy and some tears then we know that even though we are sober and OK our hearts and minds are more at peace when we are in the will of our creator.  Test the prayer.

 

If we are seeking an answer to the question “what is the will of God” then the best answer available is “help others and do no harm.”  We are human, we have defects of character and patterns of false pride, ego, and fear.  It is best that we understand it is not our place to tell others what to do and especially not our place to tell others what God’s will is for them.  We may however express suggestions for the benefit of those who have requested them.  We as members of Alcoholics Anonymous should be careful to not play God. 

 

It is said that pure power corrupts, having sponcees and fellows who look up to us should not be an abused power.  When we are careful to not tell other adults what we think they should do or make their choices for them we leave them room to grow emotionally.  Making right choices and reaping the benefits is much of what emotional growth is based in.  Furthermore each man has the right to reach their own level of incompetence.

Is Alcoholics Anonymous a Cult?

AA

BLAME

CULTS

Is AA a cult?  Well that depends on who you ask the question.  One thing for certain about the human race…we get some kind of fulfillment out of stamping a “BAD” label on groups of people, organizations, types of people etc.   We don’t want the karma or negative consequences that harsh judgement could bestow on us so we should definitely be careful about using the word “cult”.    There are lots of articles labeling AA a cult.  But really what are the characteristics of a true cult?

  • An organization that insists on separating you from your friends and family.
  • A group of people that want to control your behavior, the way you look, act by lots of rules and regulations that are invasive and contrary to freedom.
  • A religious group that insists they are the only one’s who know God.   They drill into you that all other spiritual and religious groups are bad, wrong and evil.   And they  insist that they are the “way” to God.  Without them you will be lost and doomed to a fate worse than death.
  • They often claim to be the only prophets on the face of the Earth.
  • They make themselves as God by requiring that you worship them, him.  They require that you give you self wholly to them.  All of you your mind, body, time, and work.  They require that you give all your worldly possessions to them.
  • They ultimately require that you cross your own moral boundaries and good conscience to obey them even unto death or group suicide.  The ultimate sacrifice.
  • A cult usually condemns everyone else they claim to be all-knowing when it comes to who and what is evil.  Their primary purpose is to manipulate you into handing over all your power and choices.

Pretty vicious!  These are evil characteristics at best and clearly just another form of blame by a cults condemnation of all other things religious/spiritual .

Is AA a cult?  No, not by it’s doctrines, which are the 12 steps and 12 traditions absolutely not.   Granted that does not mean that there could never be cultist sects working within AA.  Made up of people that practice AA completely contrary to the 12 steps and traditions, but that goes for any large group within organizations.  Any group of people can go awry.

However, few if any religious organizations have the liberating and non-controlling foundation that AA has by its 12 Tradition.  Nor does any other religion suggest that you seek God and put your own vision and label on God.    AA does not hand us God on a platter served up with a cocktail of legalistic regulations of what HE looks like acts like dresses like, wants us to dress like Nor do they serve a desert of descriptive visuals of the punishment and torture God will smite us with  if we don’t obey all the rules.

Spirituality does not come in a box.  We do not come to know God by other people’s seeking God for us.  We must seek out our Higher Power on our own.  That way when we reach that pie in the sky the great creator of human life will recognize us and know exactly who we are because we prayed, meditated, sought God with our might and even helped a few addicts along the way.

Out of a desperation that only the fear of utter emotional pain, death, suffering and worse can induce.   Yes by this woe we found God and by this woe we learned that Love is an action that we take to receive back that same Love.

 

 

MORBID REFLECTION & GOSSIP

WHY IT WORKS

Sharing feelings is not morbid reflection nor is venting, gossip.

SOBER INSANITY

Sharing feelings is not morbid reflection nor is venting, gossip.  In AA we find ourselves trying so hard to appear spiritual that we may overstep the line of sane thinking into stifling insanity if we are not careful.Squinting and judgmental eyes pear down at us as we squirm and struggle to appear OK when we are really shaking inside, dripping cold sweat, and can’t keep our legs from vibrating during meetings. Why?  From holding in traumatic feelings that desperately need to be expressed.

NO we say! We cannot share how we really feel then everyone will know who we are and that we are a dismal failure! No we say! We must keep an upper lip about our gnawing feelings…fake it till you make it they tell us!  Well lets just see now why is it that our country especially the Caucasian race are on so many anti-depressants and sedatives?  Why is it that white males are at the top of the serial killer list. Why is it that our country has so many addicts?  Why is it that some men come back from the war with PTSD and others that experience the same trauma don’t?

I surmise that stuffing feelings is at the core of our dysfunction.  I believe that when we don’t get traumatic feelings out that we carry them around inside of us until they make us sick. One thing certain in AA “IT IS BETTER TO SAVE OUR ASS THAN TO SAVE OUR FACE.”  For woman especially we must have one person we can tell anything to. We must have one person that we can vent our core feelings to about certain situations and feeling and not think that we are committing the crime of gossip or morbid reflection.
I am by no means the only one who has this theory.

Gossip is gossip when our MOTIVES are to belittle others to make ourselves feel better. Gossip is gossip when we share with people that will pass the rumors on and we know it.  Morbid reflection is when we go back to the past and obsess on wishing we could change it. Morbid reflection is when we go back and relentlessly beat ourselves up over and over for what we did. Talking about how a past situation made us feel on the other hand can release us from it’s power over us. WE ARE AS SICK AS OUR SECRETS!

We share with someone who will not judge us, someone who cares and understands that everyone makes mistakes. Our confidant should have humility meaning they are aware of their own character flaws and start their day from that platform of truth. If we have feelings of resentment because we have been wronged, betrayed, or hurt then it is important to vent our anger first and then forgive later with God’s help.

Remember the drink and drug is but a symptom. If we are to heal from the childhood trauma of abuse or neglect we need to express our anger even if it’s at an empty chair that we are pretending is the person. Things that happen to us as children effect us as children. Yes now we are grown but that effect does not change just because we are adults. Take out a picture of yourself from the age of your abuse. Then you will look at your inner child with the compassion and understanding that you deserve. We so many times beat ourselves up for having feelings that are fragile and hurt we forget we are still partly children inside.

 

Addicts make the HUGE MISTAKE of thinking that somehow if we go to our abuser and tell them how we feel we will get relief however that usually ends up backfiring. We instead can write a letter to the person not holding back anything and be especially aware of and write how it made us feel when it happened. We can read our letter to our trusted confidant not to our assailant. This is how we will get relief. This process is extremely different from morbid reflection because our hearts are being honored and respected. We are allowing our true hearts to be expressed. We are respecting ourselves. Or we can say I don’t want to face the past and keep pushing down until it interferes with our ability to Love and trust others. One last question…why do we think that it is that addicts in recovery have such a hard time with relationships? Hmmmm

AA SPONSORSHIP

What is AA Sponsorship all about?  

They say in AA we should meet the new-comer at his or her level not try to drag them up to where we are after accomplishing years of step-work, meetings, and more work.  How does sponsorship work?  Shall we take advantage of the fact that we have gained some self-confidence and give the newcomer the beat-down so we can build them back up??? Shall we order them around in front of our fellows to make us look good?  No, No, and Hell-no! But believe it or not immature and even hostile behavior toward a sponsee happens more in AA sponsorship than it should that’s for sure. We should be patient and tolerant with the newcomer.  

The best way to do that is by relating.  We try to relate to whatever topic is at hand.  If the topic is changing people places and things then we remember back to our early days in AA and how those changes affected us.  We put ourselves in the shoes of the newcomer rather than resenting them for not knowing what we so painstakingly learned.  Then we incorporate our AA knowledge into our experiences of how we learned that knowledge and grew from it.  We qualify ourselves to the newcomer as being worthy to share our AA knowledge because of our alcoholic war stories.

Rather than trying to pull our sponcee up to our level of recovery we are meeting them where they are and the reason that we can help them and ourselves of course is that we can usually relate to just where they are. Newcomers don’t take just anyone’s suggestions unless they can tell that the speaker has been where they have been.  The newcomer needs to know that the people in the rooms have felt the extreme hurtfulness of incomprehensible demoralization.  

We share from our hearts we speak in the “I”  format so as not to offend the newcomer. A man with an extreme inferiority complex due to years of going against his own heart and good sense is easily offended.  The alcoholic spends years defying his own moral compass therefore subconsciously loathes himself.  He starts his day from the platform of low-self-esteem so naturally he reads that opinion into people’s actions and comments toward him.   Little does the alcoholic know that seldom do others look at him the way he looks at himself so he need not be so defensive.

And so we remember when working with our newcomer how we thought that the world revolved around our belly buttons as well.  Or in other words we thought people were much more concerned and aware of our negative actions. We share with the newcomer the things that gave us hope when we came in.  We don’t  treat the newcomer as if he were a lesser person he is not.    All of us are equal from the gutter stained alcoholic to the 20 year sober keynote AA speaker we are just in a different place is all.  In Gods eyes we are all of value.

 We remember the sarcasms and snide remarks that were said to us these things we don’t repeat. There are those in AA who take pleasure in treating the newcomer like they are walking into a high security death-row prison and have to go through an orientation by ruthless inmates.  We do not have to have that mentality.  Without the newcomer many of us  old-timers would scarcely stay sober.  

Step Twelve hangs on the fact that we have newcomers to work with to keep us involved in a purpose of higher importance.  Newbie you are of high value to us in AA and many people even say you are the most important one in the room. Of coarse that statement would be bullshit because any honest AA-er will admit he regards himself as the most important one i the room. I don’t know maybe there really are some saints out there in the rooms who would put the newcomers sobriety and well-being before his own.  But the way I understand it most of us work with others to keep ourselves sober firstly, the rest is gravy.  

THE RIGHT SPONSOR

AA

GOSSIP

The right sponsor will not be perfect. If we were to find a “perfect sponsor” they would be worthless to us, we don’t need perfection. Alcoholism is a symptom of a deeper issue and the deeper issue needs to be worked on so we can stay sober. This means we need to work the steps. Staying sober is our primary purpose however the steps are devised to address the deeper emotional and spiritual issues in us.

Obviously it doesn’t take fellowship and 12 steps to comprehend “just say no” and “put the plug in the jug”. It does however take 12 steps, fellowship, working with others, and a spiritual connection to remedy an addict’s emotional and spiritual disorder.
We addicts beat ourselves up relentlessly because one day we are saying “tomorrow I won’t drink or use” and the next day we drink and use. What we don’t realize is that our emotional disorder has stolen away our ability to follow through on our choices about using and that if we are to regain our power to follow through we must learn what it is or remember what it is that empowers us spiritually and emotionally.

We need a sponsor who knows how to stay sober and has worked all 12 steps. Mutual respect and honesty are high priority on the list when choosing a sponsor no one deserves being disrespected. Next we need a sponsor who will be dependable and will show up for our meetings or at least have the courtesy to call and cancel if they can’t make it. If our sponsor misses an appointment without calling more than one time we may have to fire them and find one who will show up. Keeping our appointments with our sponsor no matter how loud our inner-voice screams otherwise is imperative if we are to stay sober. A sponsor who does not show for his appointments with a sponsee is acting brutally irresponsible. A sponsee who stands up his sponsor could die or worse. Even if a sponsee shows up and his sponsor doesn’t they have learned a good lesson about that sponsor and unless a valid emergency has occurred should fire them immediately and move on to the next possible right sponsor.
In the program there are sponsors who feel they need to beat down those with less clean-time with criticism, sarcasm and by pointing out your shortcomings for you. There are even those who will turn around and use your confidential fifth step confessions against you. God forbid you choose that type of person for a sponsor but if they do betray you…it will come back on them. All the steps are written for us to apply to ourselves not for us to apply to others by taking their fourth step inventory for them.

A sponsor’s job is to encourage, counsel, guide, teach, share, and teach us to work the steps and how to continually apply the steps in our lives as a way of life. A good sponsor is a good example and does not continually point out our shortcomings. It is part of the growth process for us to take responsibility for our lives by making our own choices and reaping the consequences of our new good choices. A sponsor should never try to make our choices for us that would stifle our emotional growth and give us a beast of burden to blame for our life.
Building confidence and self-esteem is accomplished by making and following through with esteem able choices.

When we addicts get into romantic relationships it feels good and we tend to become emotionally unhealthy with it by either handing over power of choice to our partner or trying to control the other person then we quickly lose interest in sobriety and personal growth. A sponsor/sponsee relationship can get dysfunctional also if we don’t set clear boundaries. Again if a sponsor want to control us rather than suggest to us then we ought to walk away and find another one. We should not character assassinate anyone by gossiping including those who have wronged us.

We all need to vent our strong feelings or they will eat at us but when we vent about a person in AA we need to vent with someone who will not gossip. When we first come to the rooms we won’t know who to trust but it won’t take long to figure that out. KNOW PEOPLE BY WHO THEY SHOW US THEY ARE NOT BY WHO THEY TELL US THEY ARE. Gossip is done by spreading ugly rumors about people to people who we know will tell even more people. Venting on the other hand is when we share our feelings about a situation in confidence with a person we trust. God save the sponsor who does not allow their sponcee any emotional venting of feelings. Some people pretend they no longer have feelings and never get hurt or angry because they are in recovery. Not true! As long as we are human we will have strong feelings. We should not shut our sponsees down by cutting them off unless they are going on too long in the blame game and speaking about other people’s wrong and bad behaviors rather than their own feelings. We must protect ourselves from emotional vampire’s which will suck us dry spiritually if we listen to them bitch long enough.

Woman especially however need to have a safe place where they can share their feelings about situations and people this is not gossip. To be continued….. I will be doing a segment on communication, relationships and working with others. The next post will be in the next couple of days. Thanks for reading along. If you are a stickler for recognizing my not so great grammar and punctuation please e-mail me at lrkb68@yahoo.com and put “EDITOR” in the subject box. I really could use a reliable editor who doesn’t mind working once in a while for free in the name of the 12th Step. Thanks Lori

TO OUR SILENT READERS; THANK YOU!

Administrators, writers, editors, and spiritualists of recoveryfarmhouse.com want to throw you guys a BIG LIP SMACKIN’ thank-you for your interest in our website.  You guys have played a part in keeping us clean and sober and giving us a reason to keep on keepin’ on.  We in recovery are best suited for long term goals that don’t get fulfilled until we have planned the next motivating and energizing life’s mission.   Trudge on my fellows until we meet in that supernatural meeting in the beyond we will trudge on!

cow kiss

 

Media Zapping

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This marker & pencil drawing was done by the talented Mathew Meeks 5-2013.  He is an avid traveler and a man whose spiritual insight exceeds most.   Recovery Farmhouse thanks Matt for donating this splendid tapestry of color presenting to us the intricate and celestial psyche called creativity.
This marker & pencil drawing was done by the talented Mathew Meeks 5-2013. He is an avid traveler and a man whose spiritual insight exceeds most. Recovery Farmhouse thanks Matt for donating this splendid tapestry of color presenting to us the intricate and celestial psyche called creativity.

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Laura of Akron Presents
Laura of Akron Presents

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Solutions to Negativity

Getting clean and sober includes having some days that we feel like crap.  Some ways to reduce negativity are as follows:

1. Go to a meeting

2.  Put on your shoes and take a walk outside.

3.  Go to the park or river or springs or ocean, anywhere that is in nature.

4.  Call a friend.

5.  Clean the house.

6.  Do the dishes.

Remember good feelings follow actions not the other way around.  If we wait till we feel good to do something we are allowing our feelings to rule us rather than us ruling our actions then recieving a good feeling as a result of a right action.

7.  Read positive literature.

8. Start the day with meditation and prayer.  Practice step eleven.

9.  Work the steps again in a formal fashion.  Or just work steps 10, 11, and 12.

10.  Do some service work.

11. Take yourself out to dinner.

12.  Wash your car.

13.  Watch a comedy.

14.  Tell someone how beautiful they are.  Give to charity.

15.  Make a list of all the good things you have done for your recovery lately.

16.  Tell your story at a speaker meeting.

17.  Make a gratitude list.

18.  Give praises aloud to your Higher Power.

19.  Read the Bible, or the Big book.

20.  Do something nice for your children.

Yes all these things require action.  Action is what recovery is built on.  Seek your Higher Power and tell It how awesome It, He, She is.

21. Go to therapy.

22.  Go out to dinner and a movie.

23.  Make amends.

24.  Finish your fourth step.
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This is the day we rejoice!

 

PSALMS 118:24 “THIS IS THE DAY WHICH THE LORD HATH MADE; WE WILL REJOICE AND BE GLAD IN IT.”Rejoice, rejoice, and rejoice! The preacher wrote back in the day of the Old Testament. “The Lord has chastened me sore yet I will live!”

“But for the grace of God” is what we say in AA, we prefer to think that it was our own consequences that chastened us sore or rather; stung us so much rather than our Higher Powers punishment.Due to our ingrained thought process of good verses bad we may all too often when met with two circumstantial possibilities feel we must label one of them “bad and “wrong”.  Perhaps we seek out “bad” due to our need for deflection from our own self-image.  

Is the cup half empty or half full?  Well, in recovery we have learned that many times when we pit one option against the other in all truth and actuality both are correct.  The illusive third option.  Much to our surprise the cup is both half-full and half-empty is it not?   This kind of consideration is called open-mindedness.  This is a challenge for us in recovery because it requires us to forge out new neuron-pathways in our brain by repeating open-mended thinking over and over until we have built sound and strong bridges over those pathways carved out by a life-time of closed-mined and accusing thoughts.

Is it not the Great Creator that put Karmic law into play?  Maybe.   Or perhaps Karma comes from the Universe itself by which all living/moving things must abide. Cause and affect.  Excluding of course Grace itself.   When Grace comes into play our consequences are quelled and we are saved from punishment.  Grace continues for us as long as we live and thereafter.
Whichever way you wish to look at consequences and Grace non-the-matter. The good thing is we are alive this day to give thanks that we did not die from those things which we inflicted upon ourselves and are ashamed. We call that Grace. Karma back up, you take a back seat to the wondrous and saving relief that we in recovery and those in the spiritual frame of mind call Grace.

In the Big Book it is written that alcoholism is but a symptom of a deeper spiritual and emotional malady for which the only solution that works is of a spiritual nature (paraphrased). The steps are our spiritual remedy and God is the arbitrator of our saving Grace we believe.

For that Grace and our Higher Power we give thanks and rejoice!

 

 

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The Human Condition

Third Step Prayer

Great and Wondrous Higher Power

“God I offer myself to Thee to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt. Relieve me of the bondage of self that I may better do Thy will. Take away my difficulties that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love, and Thy way of life. May I do Thy will always!”

Perhaps it is because we alcoholics know what pure and sacred goodness is that we sometimes feel an intense shame for who we are. Is that consciousness humility or is that self-degradation? Our thinking may tell us that even our feelings of shame are lowliness and wrong. However our Higher Power created us imperfect beings to strive and struggle toward righteousness and purity. We while in the flesh will never be perfect. We must let ourselves off the hook. How can we be anything but the children of God as God intended us to be with our struggles and faults?
Our solution to the human condition of an addict is to rely on a Higher Power just like the Third Step Prayer exhibits.

If we start our day from a platform of humility knowing full-well the character patterns in us that were unveiled during our step work then we do have the goodness and awareness enough to ask our Higher Power for help throughout our coming day.

Reliance on God works for us…it is our solution to the human condition we are not alone in our sometimes perilous yet wondrous journey.

ANGER & The Seven Deadly Sins

Wrath
Jealousy
Gluttony
Greed
Lust
False Pride
Envy
Sloth

There is a sin unto death or a sin that will kill you or others.  Then there are the not so mortal sins.  Over eating makes obesity and death.  Rage causes murder.  Jealousy sparks hate, and murder.  Jealously like every other deadly sin is based in fear and insecurities that are programmed into us from birth.  Greed takes from others what they need to survive.  More- “murder”.

Lust will blind a man to his own spiritual needs by which he may lose his soul due to spiritual neglect and a lust for life & fun or a lust for vile and evil things.  Lust isn’t always for sex.  It’s blood lust and the lust for power the slaughters millions of the innocent.  Lust for sex, if it results in abortion…is murder of the worst kind.  The slaughter of our own unborn children done so, many times, in ignorance.  God help us.  We are taught that this is morally acceptable.  We must do a fourth and fifth step on this deadly sin.

False Pride-Pride says “I have no need of God”  Pride says “I am a good person and I have no need to repent.”  But none are good no not one.  False pride has no humility. Humility is Truth. Truth sets a man free and keeps the man alive.  False humility is to put yourself down just to appear humble.  It is self degradation and often it’s a lie.  We should avoid both pride and false humility.  We should not speak ill of ourselves in public.  Nor should we act falsely not for the hour is getting late.  Pride can cause death in a number of ways.

Envy-Envy takes peace from a man.  It is a root of bitterness that starts as a seed and if not addressed, turns to spite, wrath, and again murder.   Envy grows briers around a man’s heart that only Jesus can break through to release and free the heart that is bound by it.  Envy breeds bitterness and unkind words that in turn make a man sick from the inside out.

Sloth  breeds the other deadly sins-Sloth can steal a man’s soul by procrastination of spiritual needs.  And by a lack of exercise a man’s heart grows weak.  Then when he rises to work out of necessity, his heart fails him.  Example-Too lazy to seek God, too lazy to work the 12 steps to  learn what is in one’s own heart.  Sloth puts off the work that is needed to keep a man vibrantly alive.  If the body doesn’t exercise the man will fall pray to his recliner in front of the TV and there shall he become a victim of gluttony, lust, and the rest of the temptations of evil.  Not having the need to hunt and gather makes sloth a temptation.

Sloth, Gluttony, Pride, Vanity, Deceit, Betrayal, Covetousness, Jealousy, Rage, Greed, Lust, Envy, Perversion
WELCOME TO RECOVERY FARMHOUSE We would love for you to sit and stay a while. Have a glass of tea, light a smoke and check out the many articles pertaining to getting and staying clean and sober. Life on life’s terms …..yikes sometimes its a scarey thing and sometimes a wonderful thing but we are gonna live it with eyes wide open. We don’t have to pretend that it doesnt suck at times. The face of quality sobriety has man looks and some of them are tears, screams, smiles, laughs all are a part of emotions that we need to express when they are inside of us…that way we won’t go crazy and lie in our coffins wearing a mask that we had fitted so tight it wouldn’t even come off our face in death. As for the sinful ladies….choose a Higher Power that’s forgiving because sin? We all do it in one way or another. (I recommend the “anger” article click up top.

SELF-AWARENESS

Anger & Resentment Issues that lead to rage and dysfunctional responses.

STEP FOUR

ANGER
In AA we are sometimes taught by comments in meetings and other people’s attitudes that it is a shame to be angry. We learn that if we have a resentment even when wronged we have somehow failed so we receive a giant “F” on our recovery report card! We get the feeling that if we are angry our spiritual condition is less than it should be.
Granted if we were made of Love and Love alone anger would be below us and not in tune with our own natures because if we were only Love we would be only Spirit.  BIG HOWEVER! No matter how much we meditate, pray, read the big book, go to meetings confess our shortcomings, work on core issues, call our sponsor, resfrain pen and tongue etc. etc. we will still eventually become angry and hurt because we are humans and anger is one of our primal key human survival emotions.   ANGER IN SPITE OF POPULAR BELIEF IN THE ROOMS IS NOT A CHARACTER FLAW. Wrath on the other hand is a flaw and also one of the seven deadly sins. The trick is not to allow our natural anger to become wrath by hurting ourselves or others in result of it. We in recovery must learn how to admit our anger to ourselves, God and another human in spite of our shame.   And so we say to ourselves; “its ok I am angry” and then we move on to the solutions of how to express the anger in a healthy way to let it go.   We journal our feelings. We write a letter that we will NEVER send journalling all the reasons for our anger. We leave logic and self-conscience maturity behind and we write our core feelings toward ourselves, others, and our Higher Power if need be. At the end if we have wronged anyone, are not trusting God, or are playing God in our minds we admit our part. We ask our Higher Power to remove any defects of character.   

WE DO NOT BEAT OURSELVES UP FOR HAVING EMOTIONS. Our emotions should flow through us and out of us.  We addicts tend to hang on to feelings and not let go. We revisit our Third Step…we are in God’s care and we sigh a sigh of relief and giggle at ourselves a bit for forgetting we are human.

 

 

Sometimes people are cruel

ACCEPTANCE

WRATH IS ONE SUBCONSCIOUS WAY OF DEALING WITH UN-EXPRESSED FEARS

 

Sometimes people are very mean so what do we do?    We try to understand and accept that people are often wrong.    It is easiest to accept mean people when we keep in mind that they are hurting emotionally possibly very deeply.   People are often taught by parents and adults  to hold in their tears, to fight back and never express their their fears.

Sometimes when we feel anxiety its highly beneficial to just get up,  put on our shoes, walk outside and scream what ever it is we are feeling.    A great release will come in us by doing that exercise.   When a person is mean to us we can just smile and respond with a kind word.   In Proverbs it is written  “A kind word turns away wrath.”

Sometimes their is a deep and abiding anger  in us,  we must not be belittled because we are angry.    Anger is not a sin however taking that anger out on others is.  Wrath is when we project our own intense anger onto other people,  blame them for our feelings and then attack.  We must not allow others to belittled us because we are hurt and cry.    It is better to cry and let our anger out than to let it fester and turn to rage.

Life is full of laughter and joy, sorrow and pain we are not weak because we have pain nor are we better than anyone else when  we are able to  laugh.    Why were so many of us taught that certain emotions are unacceptable and shameful?   I believe that it is usually the people that are in the presence of a person having an emotional upheaval who are uncomfortable and try to shut them down.    It is hard to watch our children cry and scream but that is something we should accept rather than shutting them down.  We can guide our children to a private place if they need to scream and cry and be empathic with them showing care and understanding rather than labeling their feelings wrong and socially unacceptable.

When we lose a loved one we need to mourn that loss not stuff it down till it turns to anxiety, depression and makes us sick.  Why do you thing it is that most serial killers are white males?  I have a theory on that and it is directly connected to the fact that we do not allow our white men to express their feelings as children.  My God our men have been taught that it’s weak to cry, panzy to have fears and chicken-shit to express themselves.    No wonder our men are so emotionally sick.  Why is it that some men come back from the war with PTSD and others go through worse events and come back emotionally sound.  Crying and expressing feelings when they are most intense is a huge part of healthy emotions.  However we live in a world that says:  Keep a stiff upper lip, turn your hurt to rage, turn your fears to violence.

Hispanic men express their feelings more easily because their mothers did not condemn them for having feelings and tears.  We of the Caucasian race need no longer be ashamed of our feeling nor need we any longer repress them.  We can begin by writing them down that lets them out of the box of our mind.  Next we can confess them to a trusted understanding person.  Then who knows before long we may be proclaiming our human and natural feelings in meetings so other men can find the astounding relief that they are not the only one’s who feel fear, shame, and other insecurities.  Please, we are in recovery we no longer have to pretend.

We are as sick as our secrets, the truth will set us free!  Yes there are people that take our weaknesses and try to use them against.  However once we have talked about our weaknesses they and the people who would like to use them against us no longer hold the power.  Anyone who would use a man’s humanity against him is far sicker than the man who is able to share his humanity so others may be healed.

Registration for new members

Unfortunately due to the amount of annoying spam recoveryfarmhouse has received anyone who joins now will have to fill out a very simple math equation before registering to validate that in fact they are no a spam-bot!

Thank you for your continued membership!

Lori

Put Two Irons In The Fire

Put two Irons in the fire, meaning work at two different goals who knows which one will pay off.

 

Ecclesiastes 11:6
“Sow your seed in the morning, and at evening let your hands not be idle, for you do not know which will succeed, whether this or that, or whether both will do equally well.”

I Love reading the words of The Preacher in Ecclesiastes. Who knows if it was The Great King Solomon who wrote all of the book. Scholars are uncertain of the books author. It is important when beginning a life of sobriety to set long term goals and to have more than one goal. An idle mind gives us time to obsess on ourselves and grow fear in our minds. When we have hope for the future we do the work and put the outcome in God’s capable hands.

Diligent work is what brings success. Consistency with our projects is also a key to success. The open-mindedness that we learn by working the 12 steps carries into all aspects of our work and our play. Keeping an open mind is akin to creativity and creation is a godly quality.

We should be sure to have at least one creative outlet of music, literature, art, these wonderful creations of God when practiced for entertainment will bring us joy. A consistent work ethic is good but we mustn’t neglect our times of play. Go swimming, barbaque at a park, go to the beach, ride a bike, buy a motorcycle and travel.

And like Solomon (we think) said, put more than one iron in the fire who knows which one will burn hotter. We in recovery tend to work for ourselves and have our own businesses. Perhaps because of our rebellious nature’s when we were out there. Or maybe it’s because we are free thinkers and are good at finding ways to get what we want. Bless God and thank Him/Her/It that we have the ability to work some are unable and suffer for it.

Get Busy!

GET BUSY LIVING OR GET BUSY DYING

GRATITUDE & PRAISE

STEP THREE

http://www.recoveryfarmhouse.com/2/get-busy/
http://www.recoveryfarmhouse.com/get-busy/

 

 

TODAY I HAVE JUST ONE THING TO TELL MYSELF AND THAT I WILL SHARE WITH YOU….I HAVE A CHOICE TO MAKE TODAY AND HOPEFULLY IN DAYS TO COME.GET BUSY LIVING OR GET BUSY DYING.I wonder to myself why so many days I choose seclusion and even isolation. Being alone is a good thing for some people…in moderation. I Love to be alone and have my time with God to worship freely.  I need to be alone sometimes just to cry when I feel the separation from my Higher Power. God dwells in the praises of His people.  It’s time for me to be among those praises in whatever form they take.

Praise in song, praise in testimony, praise by worship and reverence, we can even praise in silence. Also being among the energy of my Higher Powers people gives me joy and a feeling of belonging…yes it does.

Nature!  We must not forget what nature does for our soul.  This Earth was made to accommodate us humans not only naturally by sustenance but also spiritually.  So I soak up the nature again and again.

Today I choose life and one day my Great Master and Creator will call me home and my human hardware and software will be deleted, no more updates.  Maybe just maybe I will have learned enough and Loved enough to be the Spirit Guide for some important human who’s journey will have just begun.

Step Three Alcoholics Anonymous

Step Three and Four of Alcoholics Anonymous are solutions to feeling afraid

Overcoming feelings

Most likely regardless of how long we have been sober we will wake up one day feeling afraid.  We will wake up scared of one of the many things that threaten us.  Things like sickness, loss, homelessness, Alzheimer’s, poverty, an inability to take care of ourselves, our children’s well-being and so on and so on.  The horrible things that can happen and have happened to us are endless.  What do we do on these fearful days?  Do we wake up and distract ourselves by attacking those we love most?  Do we try to control everything around us?  And even if we could control everyone would that even work to protect us from our fears and problems?  NO! 

What then do we do?  We revisit our Third Step and remember that our well-being is in the hands of our Higher Power.  We remember that our Higher Power Loves us and has our back.  We should not be ashamed that we fear we share our fear and then move on to the solutions.  It is hard though because humans try so hard to hide their fears that it leaves us feeling alone and even more afraid thinking we are the only ones who feel that way.

 

We do not always know why things happen, we don’t always know why we are so afraid however be encouraged for we do have the solutions for that fear.  We put on our shoes, we tie them up and we do our work.  Put on your shoes now and feel the power that it gives you.  Sounds silly huh?  That’s what I thought also until I actually tried it.  Spending the day barefoot, un-showered, and is the same clothing I slept in does not empower me whatsoever.  It is a slothful behavior that I need to change straight-away. 

In this human life of ours we do what we can for ourselves and at the end of the day we are reminded that we do have a purpose and that we are emotionally strong, if we weren’t we would not have survived thus far.  We are here in the flesh to give Love and to be Loved.  We are here to give and to receive to help and be helped.  By us giving encouragement to others and sharing how we overcame a state of hopelessness in addiction we teach others that they also can overcome their fears, and their feelings of impending doom with the help of God.

 

Oftentimes we don’t know what we are feeling just that we are uneasy or are having anxiety.  One sure way to get out anxiety is to walk outside and scream loudly “I am not going to take it anymore!”  Again louder! After all at the heart of all anxiety is fear and we do not have to let it rule us anymore!  We do have a choice!

 

“A God Of Your Understanding”

Step Three

“Vengeance Is Mine Sayeth the Lord?”

Seeking a Higher Power

WOW!  What a scary and unsettling phrase that is!   Just where did that idea of God come from anyway?  Well the phrase came out of Romans 12:19.   It is no wonder that it’s so hard for us addicts to accept a God of the Old Testaments ideals?  Naturally with such a violent and vengeful God we don’t have a chance of surviving after this life.   A God such as that will surely repay us for every fourth step offense that we have committed and most likely  throw us straight into Hell no pass-go, right?

Well step three suggests that we find a God of our own understanding.  Many people say that we should at least pick one of the gods that are written of by the wise and spiritual through the ages.  These would be gods such as the Greeks and the Romans worshiped such as The Sun God, The Moon Goddess, The God of the Sea, The God of the Earth, The Goddess of Love.

However rather than choosing a god by our intellect we would do better to seek a god with our own heart and God will find us.  God will answer our hearts call and tell us in our hearts who It/He/She  is.  We ourselves have been called many names by many people could not the one true creator also be called by many names?  The name that we call our God is not nearly as important as the relationship that we build with God.

As for the vengeance of The Father and Creator of the Old Testament?  Well those stories may or may not be true however it may be time for us to add The Father to our fourth step resentment list.

IS THERE A CURE FOR ADDICTION?

 

This marker & pencil drawing was done by the talented Mathew Meeks 5-2013. He is an avid traveler and a man whose spiritual insight exceeds most. Recovery Farmhouse thanks Matt for donating this splendid tapestry of color presenting to us the intricate and celestial psyche called creativity.
This marker & pencil drawing was done by the talented Mathew Meeks 5-2013. He is an avid traveler and a man whose spiritual insight exceeds most. Recovery Farmhouse thanks Matt for donating this splendid tapestry of color presenting to us the intricate and celestial psyche called creativity.

Many times if we are in our addiction we go through a cycle of guilt.  First we take the action of over-doing our drug of choice. Next we either deny hurting ourselves or we deny emotionally hurting those around us.  We must stay in denial otherwise we will experience extreme guilt, remorse, and emotional self-hate.Is it no wonder that we drug abusers and alcoholics stay in denial. Why face what we did the night before if we experience pain from it?
And so, our loved one’s ask us why we do the things we do.  In response and if we are good we quickly turn the tables on them with blame.  Then perhaps we say: “If you were not such an ass-hole I wouldn’t have to numb myself on a daily basis”.  While all along it is what’s inside of us that we must numb and that we are so afraid of.  “Alcohol is but a symptom of a deeper problem” it is written in the Big Book.

So, what if we were to clear up the core issues of why we really drink, drug, and commit self abuse?  What if we could change the way that we see ourselves and understand why we are so sick?  Would we no longer be alcoholics?  The first question every addict asks in response to that question is, “would I then be able to drink responsibly?”  The thing is if we were to be healed in our hearts and minds from addict patterns we would no longer want to drink or drug responsibly we would not want to be numb.  We, if healed would have no reason to drink again would we?

There are recovery programs now that do guarantee a complete deliverance from addiction and many people do not doubt the possibility of that concept.  Furthermore many have been cured of addictions.  Nevertheless in AA and NA alike we have good reason to drive-home the concept of “once an addict always an addict”.

The thing is very few people that get sober actually process their core issues meaning, the core emotional and psychological reasons behind their self-abuse.  Hence, if we believe we are cured and have not done the emotional work and learned to make a new healthy emotional process our way of life we will just pick up the same old behaviors after we are released from our recovery babysitters and teachers.  Not only that, a huge part of recovery is to build many new relationships with sober people like us.  If that doesn’t happen the quality of recovery is usually not as strong.  In AA we learn to build relationships that we keep throughout our lives.

Working through core issues is a long process that takes years of painstaking emotional work.  It takes going back to childhood and reliving our most painful times.  Sometimes it takes years to access memories of traumatic childhood events.  Let alone facing these events and actually crying, screaming, writing, sharing, and understanding them.  We get them out by expressing them in a healthy way instead of running from them.  It is not something that can happen with  program.  We need confidants and tools.

When we wake up in the morning sober and feel the fear that used to drive us to drink we now know that they are just feelings. We need no longer drink and drug over them but at the same time if we don’t address the intense and lingering emotions that we do have while sober, we will either commit suicide, have a nervous breakdown, or drink.   The statistics of suicide in sobriety is not pretty.

We make AA a way of life and learn also to be transparent with our feelings. We ARE as sick as our secrets and so we talk about our feelings, fears, cry, scream (releases hoards of endorphins), beat the bed when we are anxious and keep up our spiritual maintenance by doing steps Ten, Eleven and Twelve.  We take meditation and prayer seriously.   If we can expose and process all of our deep core fears, regrets, guilts, abuses, neglects, develop and maintain a relationship with God it is very likely we will not want to drink and drug again…ever.

Don’t have any emotional neglect in your past?  Meditation and prayer to see these things within our past and within us works to bring them to light.  Please know emotionally sick people don’t get that way from having nurturing and fulfilling childhoods.  We need group therapy.  We need to open up and make us vulnerable.

Learning which of our feelings need addressing and which should just be ignored is a matter of the intensity and occurrence of the feeling.  Ignoring intense feelings by saying “get over it” is a dangerous game of psychological and emotional repression.  Core issues will come up in an orderly fashion when sober.  We should honor our feelings and learn to differentiate between feelings and character defects.  Not all of our emotional pains result from character defects.  Emotions are God given and should be expressed in a healthy way.  Saying “I should not feel like this” is like saying “God created junk”.  Feelings come from our hearts and are always based in fact and come from our experiences.

To recover we must become as little children.  Feel free to use the poster attached to identify and then process emotions.  There is no wrong feeling only wrong actions.

 

Why Do Humans Pray?

twelve steps and crow

Step Eleven Prayer

There are two things that motivate us to pray from our hearts and with earnest.  The first is gratitude, a wonderful warm and sweeping feeling that travels from our brain and through our entire being. When we recall the grace that God has poured into our lives we are grateful and we thank God.

Grace is unmerited favor Grace also happens when we don’t reap the consequences of our mistakes and wrong choices. But instead we get a reprieve from likely consequences and receive joy, peace and when our children are healthy and happy that is Grace.

The next thing that prompts us to pray is fear. When we are afraid of losing what we have or when we do not get what we think we need ouch!   Also, when our families or loved ones are in trouble Yikes, we run to our prayer closets.

There is nothing wrong with either of these types of prayers. Sure we could be filled with faith and humility and so assured of Gods goodness that we don’t fear at all.   We are in that place of fearlessness many times but not always and that’s OK.

It is written in The Bible that “Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen.  ” Faith and Peace are intermingled faith is the assurance that everything is and will be OK accompanied by a warm and poetically still pleasant feeling.   When we receive the gift of peace we know it is better than any worldly gift.
The better we know God the more at peace we will be. I pray today for a visitation from The Most High God and Spirit.

The more contact we have with our Higher Power the more faith we have in turn our peace of mind is increased.

Today I will pray because it is my choice to build a stronger and more understanding relationship with my higher power.

AA CLICHE’

Killing by AA Cliche

OUR CLICHE’S AID IN SAVING OUR ASSES, BUT WE SHOULD BE CAREFUL HOW WE USE THEM WHEN AIMING THEM AT OUR FELLOWS.  WHAT IS THE MOTIVE BEHIND THE CLICHE?  MOTIVES ARE RELEVANT.  SOME ADDICTS DO KNOW HOW TO TAKE A HELPFUL TOOL AND CAREFULLY TRANSFORM IT INTO AN ARSENAL OF WEAPONS.

I have a razor sharp cliche and it’s aimed at YOU!  YIKES!  Like “Keep comin’ back”.  Everybody in A.A. knows that sometimes it is code for “your an idiot maybe if you come to enough meetings you will grow a brain.” Or how about “some are sicker than others” which is code for “your way sicker than I am buddy!”

Emotional Sobriety 101

 I want to investigate the topic of AA cliches and some common uses for our little sayings.  Keeping in mind that if we did not have human weakness, fear, shame, regret, guilt, remorse, joy, happiness, sadness, we would be sociopath.

What is the fine art of killing by AA cliché and who is it that uses such ratchet techniques?    Firstly anybody who has been around the rooms for a while knows that we in AA have lots and lots of little helpful sayings that when we apply them to ourselves and put them into action not only do they aid us in our recovery but they can save our lives.

Also, when we are trying to make a helpful point to others in a meeting, giving advice to those who ask for it or telling our story at jails or institutions we quote the cliche to help make our point. These sayings also help the newcomer remember the solutions by adding the little saying to their recovery toolbox to put into action.

Oftentimes it’s easier to remember a catchy phrase and put it to use than to remember the principles and instructional paragraph size readings behind the phrase. Sayings like “Out of the problem into the solution” are priceless to an addict who is spinning around inside their mind and obsessing on a fear. We remember to just get out of the fear by choosing a solution and taking that action.

So what’s killing by cliché? Can such wonderful things as our innocent AA sayings be used in a wrong way? I don’t know can the bible be used in the wrong way? Hell yes and often!

An AA cliché is best used with the RIGHT MOTIVE and the right meaning; right motives behind the cliché are vital . When the alcoholic is still miserable, suffering from low self-worth and has a boat-load of wreckage yet to clean up from their past or present the old survival skills are still in place. They are still hurting, sick and suffering. Lashing out at others sadly brings them relief. Putting other people down is the only relief and form of self-worth they can get right now. They either don’t have the healthy and respectful solutions for emotional pain or they have chosen not to use them. However most of us sober or not do know right from wrong we know that in AA if we blatantly attack someone verbally our fellows will call us on it. The verbal attacker would be ostracized publicly and shamed for being mean and disrespectful. So instead the attacker do a little passive aggressive dance. They seek out emotional vulnerabilities in others such as a newcomer who has the courage to admit they are afraid or an old-timer who has the courage to admit they are going through an emotional time. This is how we get help and feedback. But the emotional butchers hone out addict traits in people with their high powered alcoholic perception and strike with the AA sword lopping off the emotional head of the recipient striking fear in them to never open-up in a meeting again.

Under the guise of “telling the truth” (truth should be tempered with respect and care even gossip is often truth) they cut off the emotional head of their vulnerable fellow by teaching them to never open up in a meeting again. Healthy emotions are indicative of talking about our problems, crying, venting, journaling, processing not stifling, repressing, hiding and denying that our feelings are there, that my friend is how we got sick to begin with. “We are as sick as our secrets.”

Sharing experience strength and hope is done by hearing the topic of the first share person and then asking ourselves can I relate to that, if so how, what solutions worked for me when I went through THAT SAME THING. By sharing that we undergo or have undergone the same personal and emotional struggles, and fears as the original sharer we don’t put them on the defensive or belittle them. We don’t punish them for having trouble staying sober. If we can’t relate to them maybe we are not an alcoholic regardless if we don’t relate then we have no business sharing advice. We don’t punish them for struggles or ignorance, we are not better…we are just perhaps in a better place.

It is by the Grace of God that we are sober when we start sober bashing with clichés we hurt ourselves and others. When we quote an AA cliché we should share what it means to us so the newcomer understands the right use, the loving use for the saying. “Keep it simple stupid” is one perfect example of killing by cliché. These sayings were not made so we can call the alcoholic wrong, stupid and bad and engage in fault-finding and criticisms while we are pretending to be helpful. the cliches should not be used to set ourselves above others by belittling.

“Help others do no harm”. Recovery is not a lesson in how to further harden our hearts and teach others to do the same. Recovery is about staying sober and becoming better people.

Fear of People will leave us

NINTH STEP PROMISES ARE ON PAGE 83 OF THE BIG BOOK.

FEAR OF PEOPLE WILL LEAVE US

 

Fear of What People Think of Us Will Leave us. Here we go prepare yourself for a new idea contrary to AA tradition.  (Not “The Traditions” more like Gainesville tradition.)  You will either get angry or disagree vehemently, agree to disagree peacefully, or see my point.  Either way acceptance is the key to finding peace when in disagreement. I do care what others think of me and don’t pretend not to.  Seriously…I am not sure that being apathetic or indifferent to what people think is a healthy social quality.  Really I care what my partner thinks of me, my family, and my loved ones. I do GET that it is a social rule in AA to not care however I think something got lost in the translation.  Meaning there is a HUGE difference between “Care” & “Fear”.  Lumping myself in with sociopaths who truly don’t have any “care” of what others think (but they are good at pretending they do) is contrary to healthy social conscience.  In regard to, “fear of people will leave us.”  One of the Ninth step promises.  It is the FEAR of what people think that actually creates problems and is unhealthy.  If nobody cared about what others thought of them…hmmm wonder what the world would really be like.  Social concern is a part of our conscience and keeps us humans in check.  Care and Love are often synonymous.

 

Lack of care for what others think of me does not make me strong or a better person.  Really! Its the ego in defense of a mans own low self-worth that screams from the roof tops “I DON’T GIVE A DAMN WHAT YOU THINK OF ME!”  When in all truth we would not be screaming it and harping on it if there weren’t an underlying fear of what people are thinking.  When we have no fear of what others think of us we have no reason to shout from the roof tops that we don’t care what they think.  Simple self-awareness tells me that.  I know what it is to fear people and what they think…I know it well.  I know how it feels to fear what people think of me and to fear yet be myself, yet state my views and show you who I am anyway and walk through that fear.

 

Put in a different light I had to harden my heart to survive addiction.  I had to harden my heart to survive abuse.  I had to make myself not care and put on a social armor of being tuff to survive my very sick past.  Now I have found to let Love in I need to let down the armor of protection that shut it out.  It is totally understandable to adhere to the principle of not caring.  But I no longer live by that rule, I am not a tuff girl, I have emotions, feelings and can be hurt.  I care and it is good it is part of life.  I now have a way to process my pain when and if it crops up so I don’t need the shield of not caring.

 

Higher Power softens the heart, cleanses it, and makes it truly strong.  Love is the strongest power that exists, Love and care are synonymous.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dealing With The Web Of Jealousy

JEALOUSY

THE SERENITY PRAYER

There are different kinds of jealousy.  Jealousy is definitely the sister of envy which is one of the seven deadly sins.  Sometimes jealousy is closely connected to vanity and low self-esteem issues.   I want to be beautiful like that model.   Jealousy also fits into control issues and fear of loss especially when we are talking about a sexual partner who may be interacting with someone beautiful.  We want to control our man’s behavior!  How could he be so inconsiderate to talk to that B****!

How about now we tell him he can never do that again!  It was disrespectful and blatantly wrong we think.   Ouch!  The fears that drive jealousy are horribly painful.  It is not our fault that fear crops up in us.  We were taught at a very young age weather or not we are beautiful, intelligent, desirable, and of much worth.   Most alcoholics were taught that we are just plain bad, wrong, ugly, even gross or disgusting.  Our intellect knows that we are good but our heart is telling us different when we are in a state of jealousy.

Beating ourselves up for being jealous is counter productive.  Staying in denial about it will only cause us to blame and accuse someone to release the feeling.  Not to mention if we deny it, it will escalate.  We are much better off acknowledging our jealousy and working on solutions for it.

 

If it is a man that we fear losing because of a pretty woman then we say the serenity prayer, we admit to one person and God that we are having that feeling and ask God to remove our fears.  We ask God to remove our fear of loss and we repent for not trusting God as our soul  comforter and provider,   We should pray and meditate to put God before any human being.  This will keep us safe and secure.

When we practice step Eleven our faith is strengthened and we put our eggs of security in the right basket per-say.    If we have a resentment attached to the jealousy we do a fourth and fifth step.  We revisit our third step as to remember that we have turned our life and our will over to the care of God.  We humans cannot take our hearts out of our chests and wash them clean of sin and debauchery.

So it seems we are at the mercy of the creator who will help us if we ask, this I know from experience.  If we have not worked the steps from the Big Book with a sponsor it is high time we did.   Doing so will alleviate many of our character flaws.  Peace of mind will follow our work with the steps if we do it thoroughly and honestly.

 

A writer has certain responsibilities

 

As a writer I have the responsibility to think before I write.  I must too write with good conscience check my facts and make sure they are just that…fact.  I should be sure to be careful to let the reader know if I am just stating opinion.  I should let the reader know if I am talking about my own experiences or pure conjecture.  I should back up factual statements with “sources” unless it is an well known fact.  Obviously if I am writing about brain surgery I will have to be very explicit compared to say writing about mowing the grass.  Nevertheless no matter the topic or subject matter my writing should be truth.When writing non-fiction one man’s truth is not necessarily another man’s truth but that does not mean one of them is wrong…just different.  We have one English language of which we are not entitled to write the dictionary for.  We should absolutely adhere to the rules of language and use the right word for the right meaning.

Interestingly enough when it comes to 12 step programs they sometimes take pride in re-defining words so no-one except the experienced AA-ers will understand the meaning for words like “gratitude” which by the way is no longer a feeling it’s an action.  Unfortunately they forgot to add the [ing] at the end of it so it would at least be grammatically sound.  I went gratituding today.  I think the old-timers take enjoyment in teaching newcomers just how mistaken they are about certain words and beliefs.  Anyway these click-ish rules don’t apply when it comes to serious writing.

To be a serious writer is to respect the language that is being written and to respect grammatical rules.  Not to say we won’t make mistakes and can’t throw in some slang here and there that is well on its way to entering into your favorite Websters or Funk & Wagnalls anyway, oh well Websters anyway.  (Funk & Wagnall was a dictionary written in the sixties)It is important to write in complete sentences so the reader understands.

The Microsoft Office Word program will teach you how to make complete sentences, punctuation, writing styles, spelling, and much more.  It is a fabulous program to learn to write with however I do find myself disagreeing with it from time to time.  Originality is a wonderful thing and writing about what we know most about, what we are experienced with and what we are enthusiastic about works best.

If you are planning a book write about what you know best and what your heart Loves.  We need books for everything!  There is no wrong topic of interest IMO of coarse.So please write on!  And remember the one who gets the most out of the book is the writer therefore…don’t worry if it doesn’t become published and famous.  When it comes to writing its about the journey.  However some books are just meant for type and you could not stop them from being published if you tried…like mine Lol!  Which by the way is copy written and unpublished but not for long.The Editor

 

Solutions

Can step Four cure my anxiety?  Make a fear list.  Can the Addict mind admit it is afraid?

Some pretty and acceptable words for fear are….anxiety, depression, uncomfortable, nervous.  Why are addicts so dang afraid?   Perhaps because we were taught to suppress our fears rather than express and release them.  Step four has a solution called the “fear list” that very few talk about in the rooms.   Perhaps because of the ugly words for fear that we were raised on nobody wants to be associated with scared y-cat, pussy, chicken-shit, wimp, etc.Fear and shame are at the core of every addiction and until we admit we are afraid we won’t seek out the 12 step solutions.  The right way to do a fourth step always has fear in the “effects my” category. IMO

Reference page 65 in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous for the Fourth step grid directions.  Turn to page 68 for the “fear list” directions and how to have fears removed.  Revisit Step Three to remind us that we are in the care of our Higher Power.

These solutions are part of working the 12 steps of AA.  So often people speak in meetings and coin the phrase “live the steps”.  These directions are a big part of just how to do that.

Seek, Find, and Define a Higher Power

SEEK, FIND, & DEFINE A HIGHER POWER…ITS NOT SO HARD

 

 

>It is quite evident that we need to at least consider and define who and what our Higher Power is to effectively work the steps and stay sober.  Oftentimes in the program we are asked by our sponsors to define our Higher Power . Here are several examples of Higher Powers to give us an idea for our own HP if we are in the market.  Of coarse the only way to truly find HP is to seek fervently with our own heart and mind and pray for enlightenment.

HIGHER POWER #1.

Name:  My Higher Power is The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit.  His name is Jesus, Jehovah, Yahweh, The Father.  Attributes and personality of my Higher Power: My Higher Power is Love in the charitable sense.  He is all knowing and can be personified only in the “He” or “It”.  He is also my provider, my comforter, my protector.  He is my inner essence which is life.   He is the protector of the innocent.  He is the punisher of the guilty.  He is the creator of the Earth and all mankind.  He is my salvation and the creativity in me. He is kind, Loving and will help me but only if I do certain things.

His Love for me is conditional with strings attached. Meaning if I don’t act the way He wants me to He will make me suffer a tortuous and horrible eternity in Hell.  If I make mistakes I will pay by retribution and His vengeance in spite of the circumstances. But if I am truly sorry and repent I won’t be tortured.  It’s my job to point out the sins of other people for their own good so they will be saved.  My religion is the only true religion and if you don’t believe like I do you will go to Hell.

HIGHER POWER #2

1. Jesus died for me He is my savior and was a prophet.  My Higher Powers name is The Great Spirit, and The Father The Great Creator of Heaven and Earth.  My Higher Power is the Most High God however he is accompanied by many gods of a lesser power such as the Moon Goddess, The God & Goddess of the Sea, The Sun God etc.  My Higher Power laughs when humans limit His Power by saying He can’t do certain things and when humans glorify Satan and evil by saying it has more supernatural power on Earth.  My Higher Power is not nearly as hard on me as I am on myself.  His Love for me is immeasurable, my human body could not begin to contain such a power it is beyond human comprehension.

2.  My Higher Power can be personified in either He, She, or It.  He is Spirit therefore is not actually a sexual being of flesh and blood so how I label Him is for my own benefit and does not define It/Him/She.  He Loves me unconditionally and is my savior.  I am His special chosen vessel to Love others that I may glorify Him.  My Higher Power is the giver of life, eternal Love, color, creativity, and will deliver me from death and the grave.  He keeps me sober.

I want my Higher Power to know me before I die and to help me as I live.  I am responsible for living the life He has blessed me with to the best of my ability I am also responsible for building and nurturing a relationship with my HP.  There is a Hell that he sends souls to but it is only because they are much more comfortable in Hell they don’t want to be in Heaven among the light and the angels of mercy.  These souls will enjoy torturing others and inflicting pain on one another just as they do on Earth now but in a far greater capacity.  The world must have balance and Heaven and Hell are part of that balance just not in the way many people imagine.

HIGHER POWER #3

My Higher Power’s name is “The Goddess”

She is the bringer of light and Love.  She helps me with difficulties, she comforts me, she sends me brilliant and glorious dreams and ideas for the daylight hours.  In the night she protects me from harm.  She keeps me sober and clean, she helps me not act out in immature and selfish ways.  She is the Goddess of the addict woman and she has no interest in men they are inferior beings.  When she rises and takes complete power men will serve woman and worship them.

Higher Power #4

My Higher Power is called “Program” It is the personification of the AA program and its principals in a nutshell.  The Bible of my god and my religion is the Big Book of AA and instead of Ten commandments there are 12 suggestions.  All other religious beliefs are wrong except that of AA. Each man gets to seek and find their own Higher Power.  The Great Spirit of AA keeps me sober and as long as I work the program I will be ok with life on life’s terms.  There is no Hell except the one that I have already experienced here on Earth in my addiction.  The Program is the god for the Atheist and the Agnostic alike.  He is non-judgemental and addicts and alcoholics are most important to It.  The AA cliches are sacred guides for life.  My HP is Grace, mercy, and Love.  Christian religion is full of hypocrisy and harsh judgement of which I want no part.

There are also many organized religions Christian, Buddhist, Hindu and many, many others to choose from and study however intellectualizing spirituality is a contradiction of ideals.  We must seek with our hearts and search with our minds both in prayer and study to truly find our HP.

Each of these Higher Powers will work to keep us clean and sober. If we seek with our heart desperately and fervently, if we ask for our God to reveal Himself to us….He will.  We will find a God of our understanding if we seek.  We must nurture our relationship with our HP so he will recognize us and prepare a place for us in the next life weather that place be an immaculate mansion, a comfortable eternal bed or nothingness.

Please feel free to comment and share your own Higher Power with us.  My Higher Power is #2.

 

 

No relationships for a Year!

No relationships for a year…so they say in AA.

 

 

Rehab relationships usually end up in a train wreck.  It’s time we stopped looking at relationships as a way to fix our addict lives.  If we don’t clean up the wreckage of our past we are incapable of being in a truly honest and loving relationship.

Don’t get into a relationship for at least a year when beginning sobriety.  What are the reasons for this ardent suggestion?    The purpose of the suggestion is that we alcoholics tend to get distracted from doing the work that recovery requires if we dive into a relationship that temporarily makes us feel good.  For a time it will be a lovely distraction, we won’t have to look at our lives and the mess we have made of it.   That is until our torturous feelings return or our next bender happens and we blame our actions on our new found mate.

“He hurt me so I had to drink over it”.  We say or, “He betrayed me, he did me wrong!”  That’s the tune most addicts play after the relaitonship surpases the ninety day probationary period when we are both on our best behavior.  One thing sure, addict are great at finding the sickest person in the room to start a relationship with and then they wonder what went wrong.

They say in the room that our “pickers” are broken.  Meaning we pick the most dysfunctional lovers we can find.  We never take the time to get to know them before we hand our lives over to them.  Please make my choices for me so I won’t be responsible for the outcome.  Please take care of my financial burdens.  Please be my comforter instead of a Higher Power who really does have the power to comfort my soul.

Yes the intimacy and reliance and burden of choice making should all be done by us and our Higher Power not some person who talks a good talk yet his/her actions tell a different story.  If we are in a new relationship we most likely will not fervently seek God like we would if we were alone.  The 12 Steps and recovery is all about learning to rely on God.  If we are busy relying on a man or woman for our well-being, security, choices, finances then we are not learning what recovery and living responsibly is about.

Sometimes we come into recovery married already in which case we should not make any major changes in the first year.  Sometimes also early recovery relationships do work if one of the people has a number of years sober and will allow the newcomer to learn and grow on their own.  Furthermore, even re-hab relationships sometimes are a match made in heaven and both parties stay sober.  It does happen.  Remember!  God does not have to go by man’s rules.  Sometimes providence likes to play its little tricks and reminds us that we do not have all the answers.  Every AA [suggested] rule has its exceptions.

 

 

Give Us Drama or Give us Death shout the recovering addicts!

 Honesty Open-mindedness & Willingness

Emotional Sobriety

 Give Us Drama or Give us Death shout the recovering addicts!

Honesty Open-mindedness & Willingness to learn and change is where emotional sobriety stems from.  And what is drama except the opposite of emotional sobriety?  Come on!  “We are not saints” (BB) don’t post that Bible bullshit!  However I will post this scripture from the King James Version of the Bible for learning purposes only.  These beautiful words of Jesus back up my point in concise poetic word structure.  Please bear with me I will also translate my point into an AA cliche. Mathew 12:37.                                                                                                                                                                                 “For “By thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.”  

Mt. 15:11 

“Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.”

Luke 6:44  A tree is known by its fruit.  

But we are in AA we believe our own quotes and cliches!

AA Cliche #552 

 “Believe who people show you they are not who they tell you they are.” 

What will you and your friends be having for your “daily bread” (celestial nourishment is one Greek translation) today?  asks the waitress at the coffee house. 

“Please waitress may I have a pound of lies, a side order of dramatic chaos in a gravy of screaming and yelling,  and five pieces of entitlement with some toasted blame?  And please three strips of self-pity make it crispy.  For desert I will be having some sex with strings attached because I am not responsible for my choices [they] are and [they] owe me if I give them sex!”

Ouch!  That makes it pretty plain that drama is a seductive and sometimes tasty dish.  However it is counter-productive to our personal emotional growth in recovery. 

What are steps four through nine really about if not changing our blame filled dramatic lives into peaceful lives in which we take full responsibility for our actions?  But how do we stop the drama? 

First we must work the steps and practice restraint of pen, tongue, and keyboard strokes.  We must realize that we really will miss the drama; it filled a void in our lives as sick as it was.  We must replace the drama with healthy activities and loving responses.  We must rely on our Higher Power to help us accept the things we have no power over (mainly other people) and let ourselves be molded into different people.   

We pray the serenity prayer each time the temptation to attack or defend rears its head.  We call our sponsors and vent hoping and sometimes knowing they will not gossip about our issues. 

Venting is absolutely vital for us to change.  We must be aware that we cannot stuff down every negative emotion that rises up in us and deny that our feelings exist.  Our hearts need badly to be expressed.  Venting with a neutral party about other people is not gossip.  On the contrary rather it keeps us woman sane.  However when venting becomes minutes upon hours of criticisms and character assassinations it has surpassed the criteria for healthy venting and turned into soul sucking emotional vampirism.   

In social situations if we become angry we can walk away and discuss any pertinent issues we may have with our fellows when our emotions have settled down rather than having to talk things out when we are highly and emotionally triggered.  We respectfully tell anyone who wants to argue with us just that.  That we must respectfully withdraw from the conversation until our emotions have settled.  We do not want to pile up more situations that we have to make amends for.  We have enough Ninth step work to do without creating more offenses.  

And so we learn to vent with a neutral party when we are highly agitated or hurt.  We share with a person who can and will relate to us not shut us down emotionally.   We practice restraint of pen and tongue and we do not repress and deny feelings that do rise up in us by labeling them “bad” and denying we are human and emotional creatures.

We are on the road to drama free lives by creating healthy emotions in us.   We are learning to share our feelings rather than letting them come out sideways by verbally attacking our fellows.

THE MYSTERY OF THE ADDICT “BOTTOM”

 

 “The Mystery of the Unpredictable Bottom”

No one absolutely no one knows when they or anyone else will hit the emotional bottom that it takes to get sober.  Getting clean and sober is no easy task. 

 

However, if we have hit a nasty emotional bottom, it usually causes a deep and lingering fear within us of returning to the horrible drink and drug that planted our guilt. That fear in itself can supply the momentum needed to stay sober long enough to get a sponsor and work the steps.  Unfortunately we never know when that bottom will appear.  We never know when a loved one will have had enough. 

Sometime the fear of going back out hangs onto to us even after years of sobriety.  Reason being most of us have relapsed so many times we just don’t trust ourselves.  Think about it, even if another man betrays us we never fully trust him again.  We do this same thing to ourselves (most of us) by setting out to stay sober over and over and failing miserably.  Therefore we tend to feel we are on really shaky ground even after years of sobriety.  As a solution for that fear I would tell myself.  “Self, it’s not you that is keeping you sober, you are relying on the program now, as long as you work the program, the program works!  You will not relapse.  I knew it worked because I heard testimony upon testimony of just that in meetings.

Typically with addicts we may feel extremely guilty and remorseful about the the debauchery of the night before and quit for a day or two.  But unfortunately again addicts forget so quickly the pain of a hangover or the pain of withdraw symptoms until directly after the next benge.  

What the program does if we work it is remind us of the pain we have been through so its not so easy to justify that first drink or first drug.  Therefore, the rationalization and memory lapses that are required to get drunk again do not happen as readily.  

So many times we addicts get sober then hope and pray our loved ones will follow suit.  We think if we just share what worked for us surely they will take the same route.  Why wouldn’t they?  We think. But very seldom do they follow suit until they finally hit their own pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization. 

The more we harp on them to stay sober and preach to them about what worked for us the more it pushes our loved ones away.

So we pray “God grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change the courage to change the things we can and the wisdom to know the difference.”  

STEP ONE ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS

 STEP ONE, SPONSORSHIP, THE TWELVE STEPS OF ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS

Step One

 

A sponsor is a person who has completed working the 12 steps and now teaches others to work them.  One common first step assignment is to read “How it Works” and “The Doctors Opinion” in the Big Book of AA.  Another assignment is to write five examples of powerlessness over alcohol or drugs in our own lives.  And so we have begun the journey of recovery with a sponsor who has managed to stay sober themselves.  What this first assignment does is brings our  addiction into the light by listing our powerlessness it keeps us from forgetting we are addicts and prevents us from lying to ourselves by saying…”Yes I can drink responsibly…this time.”

The Doctors opinion shows us that we are definitely not alone and we are not the only ones who have experience the powerlessness of addiction.  Powerlessness and the “insanity” of addiction are hard to differentiate between.  All powerlessness associated with addiction is insanity but not all inanity exhibits powerlessness.I promised myself I would only have one drink however I woke up after a three day bender asking myself “What in the hell happened?”  I promised myself I would never drink or drug again but I did it anyway.  I promised myself I would never hurt my loved ones by my addiction yet, again I stole money from my daughter’s piggy bank to buy crack.  Ouch!  That is serious powerlessness.

Premeditated and guiltless thievery to support my addiction is insane but it is not a show of powerlessness.  Accusing my ex-husband of being the reason that I drink and drug because of the way he treats me is insanity but it is not powerlessness.  Good luck with your step work!

When we write our examples of powerlessness we should write also how it made us feel. The thing is we addicts usually want to be in complete control.  Most of us have intense control issues even.  And so we internally beat ourselves to a pulp when we cannot stick to our own using guidelines.  Simply put we are expecting ourselves to control something that we are completely incapable of controlling. 

We find ourselves in a subconscious state of self-loathing by which we hate us and the world.  We did not create our powerlessness nor did we sign up to become addicts.  We have no right to condemn ourselves for our powerlessness.  We merely accept it and move on to step two.

OUT OF THE PROBLEM INTO THE SOLUTION! 

 

RELAPSE & STEP FOUR

RELAPSE SUCKS BUT THERE IS A WAY TO QUICKLY CLEAR THE EMOTIONAL WRECKAGE.  I DIDN’T MAKE IT UP ITS RIGHT OUT OF THE BIG BOOK.

This article has some really helpful (step) writing exercises to get past the horrible feelings that come along with a relapse and trying to step back into the rooms of AA or NA with a clear head and free heart. We who are returning from a relapse are no worse or better than the man with 20 years sober, just in a different place. As people we are all equal but just because our head knows that our heart condemns us and wants us to beat ourselves severely. These feelings can prevent us from re-entering the rooms and making another attempt at sobriety. Our head tells us “what’s the use we will just screw up again?” NOT TRUE because this time we will use the steps and rely on AA to stay sober rather than ourselves. Once we realize it’s the program and our Higher Power that keeps us sober rather than ourselves we can walk with confidence that the program works. All we need do is work it.

Relapse Feels Horrible here is a great solution for the remorse.  It’s one little assignment that is tried and true…if we can just pick up a pencil and paper to do it!!!    Relapse brings up a lot of guilt and shame which sucks, however it is the perfect time to get some serious baggage off of our heart.

AFTER WE WRITE OUR FEAR LIST with our short explanation of “what happened and how it made me feel”  WE ASK GOD TO REMOVE ALL THE FEARS AND CHARACTER DEFECTS WE HAVE CONFIDED IN OUR HIGHER POWER.  We share our fear list with an empathetic listener who will relate to us and NOT INVALIDATE OUR VALID EXPRESSION of fears.  Women are usually more empathic than men.

 Building self-esteem happens when we take one right action at a time.  First thing, write core feelings.  Write the self-loathing and the feelings of utter worthlessness which addicts feel after a relapse.
Example: I feel like a failure, I hate myself for the things I have done to me and others (children especially).  Write the fears associated with thoughts like: I let down my fellows, what will they think of me now?  I want people to like me but now they will know I am a failure.  Write all the society fears associated with relapse.  Write the shame of re-entering the rooms after a relapse and what that does to your reputation and how it makes you feel.

Our head will tell us this exercise is just making matters worse.  Our head will say “why should I replay this it just causes pain?”  But this exercise should feel yucky!  It goes against our very nature to hide away and repress feelings of inferiority.  Then cover it all up with a bow of character defects and blame everyone else.  Well that does have it’s uses but it will never get me well.  And the feelings I hide will come out sideways eventually at those I love most.  So if we are going to feel like shit anyway we may as well feel like crap on our way to getting better than feel like crap on our way to getting sicker.  Your choice.

GET TO THE CORE FEELINGS THAT MOST EVERY RELAPSER FEELS UNLESS THEY ARE A SOCIOPATH or can’t get honest.  These admissions of feelings and fears WILL cut the ego to the quick!  These core human emotions, when addressed & processed will set the addict free from anxiety if done thoroughly and regularly.Next write all the fears about security.  I lost my house I am scared shitless, I am ashamed I now live in a trailer.  Write: I maxed out my credit cards, how will I ever pay it back?  My life sucks now financially, all that money I spent, regret, regrets regret!  I am afraid I will be homeless!  Don’t just write it like your balancing your check book or something, no!  Write an expression of emotion straight from the core of your heart words that would embarrass you thoroughly if anyone read them.
On a Fourth Step let’s face it folks; if we only write what we are comfortable sharing with others we won’t get a damn thing out of the step work.  Write the stuff that you want hidden, write the stuff that makes you squirm at the thought of anybody seeing it!  Write the stuff that you have hidden for years!There is a reason that we talk about the three fear groups.  Sex, society and security are mankind’s main concern, not just the addicts concerns.
When we get into fear 99% of the time it’s about losing our security in one or more of these areas.  Therefore it makes sense to write these fears like it instructs us to in the fourth step Big book.After we have expressed our feelings on paper and have listed our fears we re-visit our third step.  We remember that God has our back in all these areas and we ask him or her or it to remove all the fears we listed.
Next we confess our fears and feelings in a meeting or to our sponsor.  We do the fifth step on the worst of these fears and they will lose power over us!It’s easy for other people to tell us to “get over it”.  But that’s easier said than done, we can’t take our heart out and put it in the dishwasher with the dirty dishes.  Sure some things we can just shrug off but other feelings need a little work to help us process and get out.
The people who say “get over it” are often the ones who repress so many emotions that they are one heart-beat from a break-down.  We came to AA to learn how to deal with our emotions not how to shut them down and get sicker.  Always pray before any step-work so your recovery gets the supernatural kick-start that it needs.
  AFTER WE WRITE OUR FEAR LIST with our short explanation of “what happened and how it made me feel”  WE ASK GOD TO REMOVE ALL THE FEARS AND CHARACTER DEFECTS WE HAVE CONFIDED IN OUR HIGHER POWER.  We share our fear list with an empathetic listener who will relate to us and NOT INVALIDATE OUR VALID EXPRESSION of fears.  Women are usually more empathic than men.

FEAR OF THE FUTURE

FEAR OF THE FUTURE

STEP THREE

MEDITATION

I sat in meditation and prayer and pondered…..Where is the place that fear of the future and fear of the unknown meet with trust, faith, and relief that everything will be okay?

I touched and stirred the waters of Higher Vision the waters revealed her truth. That place is where pain reaches a point we can no longer tolerate it alone.

Then a sacred door to the light opens for us to walk through into understanding and true spirituality. This is the place where we meet God.

 

Scientists confirm the eyes really are the window to the soul

The Eyes are the window to the heart
This article was found at “Mail Online”         http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-436932/Scientists-discover-eyes-really-window-soul.html#ixzz2wdLnkgBz

 

Scientists discover that eyes really are ‘the window to the soul’
The eyes really are a window to the soul, according to scientists.
Patterns in the iris can give an indication of whether we are warm and trusting or neurotic and impulsive, research has found.

Everyone has a different structure of lines, dots and colours in their iris.
So scientists at Orebro University in Sweden compared the eyes of 428 subjects with their personality traits to see if these structures in the iris reflected their characters.
They focused on patterns in crypts – threads which radiate from the pupil – and contraction furrows – lines curving around the outer edge – which are formed when the pupils dilate.
Their findings showed those with densely packed crypts are more warmhearted, tender, trusting, and likely to sympathise with others. In comparison, those with more contraction furrows were more neurotic, impulsive and likely to give way to cravings.

The researchers argued that eye structure and personality could be linked because the genes responsible for the development of the iris also play a role in shaping part of the frontal lobe of the brain, which influences personality.

They say the findings could one day be used in psychoanalysis and by companies screening candidates for jobs.

The results will be published in the American journal Biological Psychology. ‘Our results suggest people with different iris features tend to develop along different personality lines,’ said Matt Larsson, a behavioural scientist who led the study at Orebro University.’These findings support the notion that people with different iris configurations tend to develop along different trajectories in regards to personality.

Differences in the iris can be used as a biomarker that reflects differences between people.’
The scientists suggested these differences are due to genetic variation, and pointed to the involvement of a gene called PAX6. This gene helps control the formation of the iris in embryos. Previous research has shown that a mutation of it is linked to impulsiveness and poor social skills.

The speed and accuracy with which irises can be mapped means there is growing interest in using photographs of eyes for security as well as research purposes.
The Government is testing the use of digital photographs of the iris on ‘biometric’ passports and identity cards.

Trials of the iris technology have been taking place at Heathrow, Gatwick and Manchester airports.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-436932/Scientists-discover-eyes-really-window-soul.html#ixzz2wdLnkgBz
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ISOLATING

 Life on life’s terms

Sometimes for those of us recovering from the traumas of abuse, abandonment, neglect, and addictions sobriety gets tough.  Life on life’s terms seems to drag us into a rut and the negative thoughts takes hold…Ouch!  Its ok it happens to the best of us.  However we need to remember that staying home in our safe caves watching our favorite programs on TV will eventually compound our negativity if we continue there.  Though it seems cozy and safe do not be deceived, what we really need is to get up, put our shoes on, get some exercise, go to a meeting, go for a swim, a bike ride, bird watching, or any other bright and lively activity we can think of in spite of the way we feel.What daylight and nature does is renew our minds and feeds positive energy into our soul.  Going to meetings gives us food for thought keeping our mind sober.  If we share our experience, strength, and hope in a Loving way it feeds fulfillment to our soul.  We are one with the universe; we become who we think we are.  Being one with creation gives us the power to attract success and joy.  However we must keep our minds on a positive track and sometimes that means getting very real with our Higher Power by praying for more of Its/His/her positive energy to enlighten and refresh our weary bones.  Without a refreshing of our minds now and again things can get very hum drum and mundane and then down right depressing. Be compassionate toward yourself if you are feeling down.  It doesn’t help to be angry and criticize ourselves for feeling the human emotion of sadness.  Remember that will feed the negativity.  Instead be kind get out of the problem by taking action into the solutions that you know work.  Recovery is: to not let our feelings rule us anymore.  We become strong when we pick ourselves up in spite of what our feelings are telling us to do.  Good feelings follow right actions not the other way around.  Sometimes we will start feeling better when we get just a block down the road.Bill Wilson and the authors wrote some great prayer examples on page 86 & 87 of the Big Book under step eleven to start our day.  You are God’s child you are of great value; you are special and have a sacred calling, a mission in life that is to be fulfilled.  God will give you what you need to leave your great and humble mark upon this Earth.  The good works we do for your fellows WILL echo in eternity!  Don’t believe for a minute the lie that tells you otherwise.

                                                      

THE POETS PAGE – PLEASE SEND YOUR POEMS TO:

edgarlaura826@yahoo.com ——————mark “POETRY” for E-mail subject.
Send me your poems.  Then just check in the next week or two your poetry will be published on this page.

There’s a secret place in the color of day
where ancient sacred entities play
reveal your face oh blessed king
of light and color and dancing stream
my dreams and visions you catch in the night
how is it this day I see the sight
of the great illusive “dream catcher”

EARTH
Earth, gives and takes.

Sun presents water sparkling bubbles teasing air.

Thick green leaves give life.

Ant sharp sting strike back.

The desert dry hot barren it takes.

Do not test the desert father dear do not tempt snake rattles.

Fang shiny wet death realms unseen.

Earth, experience duality.

Today sacred Earth you are seen.
By Admin

SPIRITUALLY FIT

“SPIRITUALLY FIT”

Does being “spiritually fit” mean that everything is wonderful in my life and I won’t feel any unpleasant or even horrible feelings? Does being spiritually fit mean that I will never make a mistake? Does being S.Fit mean that the 12 step lock-combination is flawless and perfection is what I have attained. Whoa! This kind of idealism will lead me to misery because every time I don’t feel good I will beat myself up for not being spiritually fit and hide my true feelings from my fellows until they consume me. . Perfectionism! I no longer suffer from the ideals of perfection. Perfection is something I will never attain while I am human. I revisit my step three. Thats right I am relying on a Higher Power because I AM fallible. Spiritual growth is sometimes painful I will need to cry while spiritually fit.

Sobriety is like….peeling an onion, my past feelings, regrets, shames, trauma will come up best I don’t ignore deep feelings especially in the first three to five years of sobriety these are the “heavy emotional processing” years. T The first five years shit just comes up, tears we didn’t cry, screams we should have let out, shame we needed to confess, guilts we buried so deep we thought they were gone, loss we could not bear to feel, abandonment and betrayals by those we trusted. Yep it all comes up, sorry.

The good news is A Higher Power can lessen the pain even remove it but never all of it…not that I have seen. Journalling is priceless for the emotions. If I am doing my fourth step correctly it should be a very emotional time of tears, regrets, shames, grief, realizations about myself and my survival patterns (steps 6&7.) The work ain’t easy but it works. I have worked the steps once a year for the first six years anyway. I am probably due to do it again.

The imprints of the past no longer have a hold over my actions. I need not destroy myself because of the way I feel. I can change the way I feel today by taking actions.

I don’t want to leave out the Joy, fulfillment, enlightenment, the laughs and the awareness of Gods Grace and wonderment that sobriety offers.  Sobriety rocks!

Disclaimer: There is always a possibility that you do not fall under the addict norm and don’t need to do the step work at all. Maybe its only the traumatized that need to do step work.  If a pink cloud never leaves why do the steps? I wouldn’t.

 

pic found at-http://www.fanpop.com/clubs/bits-and-pieces/images/1814875/title/tears-wallpaper Thankyou!

Gratitude- EXPERIENCE STRENGTH & HOPE

Gratitude

Complacency

Perfectionism

After we have been sober for a long time if we are not careful to continue putting the steps into action we might forget just how far we have come. We might start believing the negative messages our mind sends us if we only see the things that we have not accomplished. There will ALWAYS be things we wish to accomplished so its not fair to us if we beat ourselves up for not being super-human.  Perfectionism & complacency are destructive habits.

We might start believing the negative messages other people send us. It’s important when doing step eleven or ten to remind ourselves of the good we are still accomplishing. Even if all we have accomplished lately is to feed ourselves properly, raise our children, get the right exercise, prayer, meditation, etc. We need to inventory the good we are doing and if we can’t think of anything we are doing for our healing recovery then we need to consciously take action. We must not give up our hope or our dreams

Its just not possible to do it all so we do what we can with our Higher Powers help. We have seasons of life and some periods are “down time” other times are “up times”. We must experience both yin and yang to keep balance in us and the world. Making a gratitude list can consist of all the wonderful things God has done for us since we got clean and sober. We are children of a creator who Loves us, we are inherently good and deserve good things even if sometimes we don’t realize how good some circumstances will end up being. These ideals are all about building faith, and trust in our Higher Power Our trials do end up being good for us in some way even if its only to build character.

Lastly we lift our hands to the sky and give thanks aloud to the God of our understanding of coarse.

Encouragement, Hope, and the gift of desperation

STEP ONE

THE GIFT OF DESPERATION

HOPE

Back when I was drinking and drugging I went through the pains of withdrawal so many times.  I went through so many sleepless nights of misery I cannot count.  I went through so many fights, betrayals, fears, and neglects and abuses to me and by me both.Now I am older, eight years ago I ran out of gas you could say, I was just done with that life.
I sat in one of my first AA meetings scared to death and shaking filled up with so many issues that I had never faced about me.  I honestly had no idea who I was.  I had developed emotional survival skills that were killing me now it was time to learn who I am and a new set of healthy coping skills.I held the gift of desperation in my heart and the open-mindedness of humble and sacred Hope sparkling like a diamond among a dense darkness.
That Hope had to be carefully nurtured or it would be buried alive by darkness and fear of the future.
The people in AA said things like, “This minute are you ok do you have what you need?”  And I did. They told me “It’s completely natural to be afraid its ok”.  They said “If I weren’t afraid something [was] wrong”.  They said “Go to two or even more meetings a day if you need to”. They told me to “Express your fears because we are as sick as our secrets”…so I journaled.

Slowly my self-confidence rose by working step 12 chairing meetings regularly. I was a sponge that absorbed every recovery tool I could.
Through it all I prayed fervently for God’s help and guidance. My Higher Power does not always do things the way I think He/She/It should.  However that little bit of Hope that was there in the beginning is stronger now.  The darkness that surrounded it is commanded to stay back.

I still must nurture that Hope unto the end.  I choose today to endure to the end no matter how scary life looks. I get up I put one foot in front of the other and I go on unto the end of my days.  So I live on and keep that darkness at bay through faith, Love & Hope.  Fear would have me take my end into my own hands but be reassured things always, always, get better if we endure and hold on to Hope and Faith.

Meditation: There is one thing true that will end a man before his time that is the fear of the future and a lack of trust in a Higher Power that does Love Him.  Surely if I choose Love how much more will a God of my own understanding of Love save me from the throngs of death and suffering in this natural life and lead me unto a better eternity.

Two Rights Don’t Make A Wrong

 

FAULT FINDING IS THE COUNTERFEIT FOR SELF-ESTEEM AND A TRUE FEELING OF SELF-WORTH.  Fault finding will replace self-esteem for a while until  we can do the next right thing long enough to actually build some.

Why is it that we see on all recovery websites and AA, NA chat rooms people are always looking for someone or something to pin the label “BAD” or “WRONG” on? It just never fails, and why?

Anyone who has worked the steps thoroughly and honestly knows that their most common character defect or carnal survival skill has been “BLAME” in the past.  

BLAME comes in many forms such as: attack, accusation, criticism, gossip,resentment,self-pity, and hate, even righteous indignation. These all reek of blame. The state of “blame” is a state of denial. Even if our blame is in the form of righteous indignation it is still a state of denial. When we blame others we are denying the real core reason for our yucky feelings.

We in recovery must learn the hard hard lesson of not only taking responsibility for our own feelings by owning them but also finding healthy and harmless ways of processing those feelings such as;
hitting with a plastic bat, punching bag, punching a pillow, writing, the [fuck you] letter that we never send, screaming, crying, sharing with an empathic listener, moaning, groaning, and other guttural sounds all promote release of emotions from the gut and relief. If we want to heal we have to feel not blame.

All of these method of processing feelings are usually looked down upon by others and considered crazy or weak.  Therefore it is best we exercise them while we are alone in a private place.  Beating ourselves up is not a healthy way to deal with our feelings.  Our hearts are innocent and need to be listened to by us without judgement.

We take our feelings and we write them down; “I feel hate or resentment toward Betty.”  Behind every resentment is fear.  When we find our core fear and ask God to remove it we find peace.

“I am afraid of losing my partner because I feel like I am not good enough I feel like Betty is better than me so I hate her” Wow! Was that so damn hard? Its ok to admit being afraid and feeling [less than] when we have solutions for that state of being.

Remember feelings do not have to be logical.  The fourth step work is an ongoing tool that should not be thrown by the wayside after accomplishing it one time.  Doing the fourth step should be a way of life in addressing every one of the blame characteristics listed above.  Humans fear they are not good enough especially if they were relentlessly taught that in youth. 

We can feel yucky without blaming anyone for it. Feeling bad does not mean we are weak it means we are human.

 

FLAVORS OF BLAME: attack, accusation, criticism, gossip,resentment ,self-pity, and hate, even righteous indignation are all by-products of blame. Addiction is a disease of denial which travels through the psyche in many ways. Denial or the lack of knowing how to take responsibility for our own feelings and blaming others for our feelings is the number one cause of failed relationships among addicts. The refusal to own our own feelings walks hand in hand with resentment. But don’t be too hard on us, no-one taught us how to process deep dark feelings. Addicts have a huge capacity for emotional pain in turn when we heal we have a huge capacity for understanding and Love. Once we learn how to own and honor our feelings, process them in a healthy way there is no limit to what we can accomplish for Love.

Who knew crying is a healthy emotion, privately screaming is a potent way to release anger. (not at someone) Writing a “fuck you” letter that we never send is an awesome way to release intense feelings of hate. Confessing shortcomings in meetings in a general way is a awesome solution for that defect.

We have the tools, we CAN stay sober and find Love, fellowship, and a psychic change.

Step Two ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS

STEP TWO of the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous is “Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.”

Sure it’s easy for many to believe that there is a God out there and that He or She is powerful, good, and fully capable of restoring any human to sanity. However believing that God WILL restore us to sanity is another matter especially to a guilt-laced heart and mind. When we are full of the emotions drummed up from the wreckage of our past most will feel like they do not deserve to be restored to sanity. It is common for newly sober addicts to feel unworthy of such miraculous spiritual gifts as sobriety, healing, or white light experiences. Why would God Love me when I feel like I am undeserving of any good thing? How can I accept that I will be given relief from the obsession when I have regularly punished myself with drug and alcohol abuse for so long?

We need not worry about all these natural fears. If God had an addict mind we would all be in serious trouble but He/She/It does not.
The Grace of God is often defined as “undeserved merit”. Meaning, to be bestowed with a gift we do not deserve or earn. God’s Grace need only be accepted by doing the next right thing. We make our decision with strong Hope that it will come to pass and when it does and we are restored to sanity…our faith is strengthened tenfold.
We look around the rooms; we hear the testimonies of how multitudes of addicts and alcoholics have been delivered from addictions by a miraculous psychic change. Can we accept such a wonderful gift or must we go on punishing ourselves for our imperfections in hope that somehow our destructive self-chastisement will turn us good?

The addict mind is a complex one however we do not have to work out all the particulars regarding step Two. Step Two is a spiritual action not a carnal one to be reasoned out. Addictions are spiritual maladies that need spiritual solutions. We don’t need to ask why or how it works we just need to do the work!

The dark and spiritual, cunning, baffling, and powerful malady of addiction calls for a solution that our carnal minds do not understand yet will become so clear to us once we receive our psychic change.