People Are Often Bitches!

People Can Be Ruthless at Times

With no consideration for the future                                                                       or Karmic Law.  BUYER BEWARE!

So sorry to be negative but I need to vent.  My daughter and me got ripped off by an “Acceptance Now” salesman at HHGregg. Usually the deal on rental/purchase agreements are you pay in 90 days and there is little to no interest.  “Just like Cash” they advertise.  I have purchased from them before and everything went smoothly.  I paid the balance off in time and had little interest.  However that waswit a different sales person.

The new salesmen “Ben” randomly added $200 to the price after the second payment of $300 was made.  And he lied about the due date of the 90 days.  We bought it on the 15th, the payments were due on the 15th, YET the 90 day offer expired on the 14th.

Yes,  I had my part in the purchase (rental) but right now my feelings matter.  I have been wronged.  And that’s what I am venting.  I will get to the “my part” once I have honored my emotions so as not to repress intense feelings.    I am hurt that I couldn’t help my daughter recover her losses.  It was mostly her money that paid the first 3 payments.  He basically just pulled an extra $200 out of the hat and added it to the bill.  It’s not even in the contract.    People lie all the time.

Greed is one of the worst character flaws there is.  Because with greed people don’t care who they run over to get their money. I myself have been criticized over abundantly about my own writing even though I pointed the finger at no one.  Well this time I am pointing.  I have been slandered and called names for stating my opinion.  And I have been speaking my mind about various issues for years.    Even now there is no one person who I can name to be my beast of burden and blame for all my woes.  That’s not what my truth is about.

In the world on every turn people in business are doing anything they can to steal, manipulate, corrupt, rip-off, falsely promise, steal your identity to make money.  And though it is no crime to be rich and smart it is a moral crime to do it by harming others.

Corporations are destroying our Earth for profit.  Drug companies are poisoning people for profit.  The most needed medicines for sick babies and innocent victims go without the cure because drug companies charge un-thinkable fees for the cure.  Politicians have long ago sold American’s out to foreign owners.  We are owned by China.    Drug commercials make me sick.  They play on our fears of death and the ideas that surround death.

Our American politicians are not stupid.  They knew when they moved all our work overseas we would lose both jobs and integrity. Thanks Jimmy Carter.  What an idiot.   We are exporting all our commerce into other countries while our “$$$-dollars” diminish in value at alarming rates.  We are taxed every way we turn.  Sure, buy gold, well maybe  it can save you.  Basically if we don’t know how to hunt and fish, farm and build we may not survive the coming years.

Not to mention there are classes of people in both white, black, Hispanic, and other cultures in the U.S. who will kill to get what they need when disaster hits.  Looting is a perfect example of the mentality I am referring to   Better have some locks on your doors.  Humans are fucked-up and they turn into vultures when desperation hits.  Our true test as children of God is can we Love through all this dysfunction, fear, and hate?   Can we Love?

Will we do unto others as we would have them do unto us?  Or will we do unto others before they do unto us?  Will we become the monster knocking at the window?

Picture this; what lengths did you yourself go to for drugs when you where dope sick or in withdrawal?  When food becomes in short supply every man women and child will become a jones-ing dope fiend.  People on medications will have it bad.  If there is a food shortage there will also be a drug shortage.

How did I go from getting ripped off by “Acceptance Now” all the way to the apocalypse?  I guess because in my mind the disrespect and hatred has a far reach.  What our country in many ways is doing to us other nations are doing to our country.

Pray for your enemies.  Help those who despite-fully use you.  Feed the hungry, give to the beggar.  Rejoice in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.   Do the will of God and it will be marrow to your bones.

http://acceptance-now.pissedconsumer.com/

http://www.yelp.com/biz/acceptance-now-schaumburg

http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Acceptance-now/Springfield-Missouri-65807/Acceptance-now-RAC-FFO-Lying-stalking-abusive-business-to-say-the-least-Springfield-Mi-1148300

http://www.topix.com/forum/city/poplar-bluff-mo/TTMQ3DF9EHSOOKFF3

Why Am I an Alcoholic?

Why Are Addicts in so Much Emotional Pain?
Why do addicts seem to have a proclivity towards self destruction?

Why are addicts so inclined to blame others for their own choices?

And the biggie, why do our sponsors teach us to not ask “why”?

Answer number one: I was in so much pain that I needed to numb myself due to a life-time of hiding away my true identity. By hiding intense feelings and thoughts away my pain lived inside me till I finally was taught how to let it all out.

Because of emotional neglect and a lack of spirituality I suffered pain. Notice I said “neglect” not “abuse”. Many alcoholics have good parents who have no idea how to emotionally nurture a child in their formative (young period of development in which our emotional patterns are formed) years. Our parents basically without meaning to, teach us we are bad, wrong, lesser than, and don’t really deserve a good life. At the age of 0-8 we have no idea what true love and caring should look like. I myself did not realize this until the intensive work I did into my past by both group therapy and a brilliant psychologist who had been through the same neglect and tearing down of his self-worth.

Once I believed I was a bad person I reasoned I would prefer to be a good person doing bad things so in an effort to fix myself (subconsciously) I engaged in a life of bad choices. Always struggling for the attention and nurturing my parents were incapable of giving. I started every day from the platform of low self worth. I beat myself up endlessly in hopes that if I punished myself enough I would again be a good person who deserves Love. . I hid myself and my emotions away because I believed they were all bad and wrong. Surly no one would like me if they knew who I really was. There is a deep price to pay for holding in who we really are and how we really feel. A body is not made to repress so many intense feelings. I caught Cancer by the time I was thirty-five partly because of repressing emotions. A large tumor had to be cut from my thigh. I was the great “repressor”. But the “screamers” (those addicts who yell at other people often) who also hide their true selves away, commonly suffer from heart attacks and strokes. ( My doctor’s theory not mine but I experienced that theory first hand.)

You see once I found a drug that numbed that pain it became my best friend. People who don’t have the pain that addicts have simply don’t react to drugs and alcohol the way those in deep emotional pain do. Common sense if you think about it. We are way over-thinking addiction in America. It’s really simple.

I was self-destructive because the fear of living so many years in great pain is a scary thought.

Blame is the most wide spread way of distracting and deflecting the responsibility of what I had done, who I really am and how I really feel. If I am blaming someone else then I don’t have to look at my guilt, shame, pain,fear.

In AA they teach us to not ask why because they themselves have never had the opportunity to answer their own question of “why did I drink and drug, why did I need to numb myself”.

Unfortunately if we don’t look at the “why” behind our addiction then we can never really find a healing.

The program works if we get a God breathed miracle and IF we do an in depth fourth step that brings into the light all of our shame and fear.

If all we do is list our wrongs and not talk about our deep and intense fears, shame, and feelings then the program is just a band-aid. And when the program is just a band-aid you will need that aid the rest of your life, just life so many people preach in AA. That the old timer is just as close to a drink as the newcomer. That’s true if the old timer hasn’t done the work on his core issues of shame, fear, and hurt.

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So what are the solutions?

The solutions are to rebuild our self worth and find ways to continually process the way we feel and what we think. Also our childhood fears and intense feelings need to be let out. Journalling, writing, crying, screaming, physical exercise coupled with an emotional out-pouring. If we feel horrible don’t lay down. Take a bat and beat the bed with it. Take a whip and beat a tree with it. Buy a punching bag if your a man and include a diary with your workout. Start writing and find out what is really in your head. WRITE DOWN CORE FEELINGS AND CORE FEARS. THE ONES THAT WOULD EMBARRASS YOU IF THEY WERE DISCOVERED. WRITE DOWN THE WEAK AND VULNERABLE THOUGHTS THAT HAVE HAUNTED YOU FOR YEARS. Then share the ones that are ongoing. We need at least one person we can tell anything to, even if it’s in confessional. Work all the steps in depth including shame, fear, and core child-like thoughts and needs. “I want people to love me” “I am afraid” “I hate myself” “I want my fathers love” “Why won’t Mommy Love me?” Our fourth step needs to work on our wrongs and on our deep emotions. We must rebuild who we are by doing step twelve for many years. Not only do we need to address our core issues to heal but we also need to develop new patterns of behavior. We must take our step three seriously. We need to admit that we don’t trust God or His choices for us. And why would we? Look at our past lives and what we have suffered. We need to get real with God Himself. “If your there show me”. Pray from the heart not from some mantra robot prayer.

Lay on the bed. Put your arms straight out to your sides leaving you vulnerable. Now show God your true heart not hiding or covering any of it. Admit to him you are lost and need help but that you don’t really know if He will help you or if He exists. JUST BE REAL WITH GOD.

Join a home group and make commitments to do stuff that is scary to you. Chair meetings, tell your story at a speaker meeting. Chair more meetings. Go to jails and institutions and share your story again. Do this and keep doing it. Every time your scared of relapse write it down and tell God your not trusting Him again and ask for help. Remember the program works and it’s not you that is healing you it is the program/God which you are working that is healing and keeping you sober. “so your OK and your going to be OK”. Ask your self; am I OK right now? Then that is good enough.

Do fear lists on a regular basis. Then find your part (not trusting God/program) and realize your OK. Do step Eleven regularly with positive affirmations of all the good things you have been doing for your recovery.

You are okay if you perceive that you are. Write an autobiography of the most intense childhood experiences and feelings and share it.

Ask God to remove your character defects. Do no harm. Help others. This is the will of God. Never say negative things about yourself like name calling and putting yourself down in your own head.

Give thanks every day to God….aloud. If you seek a spiritual experience to give yourself the supernatural boost that Bill W himself got then go to places that people seek God. I recommend the Pentecostal church because of the laying on of hands and prayer. I also recommend the Catholic Church because of the confessional. Be Catholic for a day and go to confession. The smaller Catholic Churches will accommodate you that.

Finally-make amends to those you have hurt without expectations of their reciprocation. Use a dictionary. Start learning, Set life goals. Eat right. Exercise. Do not engage in sick relationships anymore. If someone brings out the worst in you then it’s time to move on. Quit reserving a beast of burden to blame for your feelings and actions. No one can process the way you feel except you.

Tall order? Yes. Read the book I wrote for more help to really heal. Not so you can drink again but rather so you won’t want to drink again. You won’t want to change the way you feel because you will feel fine. And sometimes you will feel great. And sometimes you will feel like shit but you won’t hold it inside. If your angry you will beat the bad and write down your feelings. If your hurt by someone you will tell them “I am hurt by what you said.” That is if you want an ongoing relationship with them you must quit acting like a stone wall. You share not so people can fix you No. It is your sharing in itself that will fix you. You need noone to fix you but you do need to start sharing the more intense feelings and thoughts.

Show all people respect. All people.

“Paradise for the Hellbound” a book about change

Frank Duffy’s Poem “DEPRESSION”

See more of Franks poems here:  FRANK DUFFY’S POEMS

DEPRESSION

I woke up with my friend depression
I went to see my therapist for a skull session
He asked me do you have any aggression
I told him aggression is not my only obsession
Without a profession its easy to get caught in any obsession
So when I am feeling blue I try to be happy and think of you
But my old friend depression is very sly
Sometimes it wont even let me try
But I am not giving up, I will not die
I will keep on going I am going to try
There is always hope if I don’t give in
As long as I don’t pick up booze and dope!
I will not die, so my old friend depression
Why do you even try

Loving The Unlovable

By Nancy Carr

Author of “Last Call”

Available on Amazon

http://www.amazon.com/Last-Call-Nancy-L-Carr-ebook/dp/B00TBWNTGU/ref=as_sl_pc_qf_sp_asin_til?tag=recovefarmho-20&linkCode=w00&linkId=DSIOJ7BRWK3BWSKN&creativeASIN=B00TBWNTGU

Loving the Unlovable

One of the first things I heard when I joined AA was “we will love you until you can learn to love yourself” I didn’t understand what that meant at first, but after getting some sober time it made sense to me. I came into AA broken, a shell of a person. I was morally, spiritually and emotionally bankrupt (another saying we hear in AA). It took a while for me to start feeling likeable, and to start loving myself again. It took even longer for me to be able to offer that love to someone else as I didn’t feel worthy of love when I was newly sober. One of the greatest things about becoming sober has been the ability to love. To fully love, unconditionally and openly. Anytime someone new comes into an AA meeting I get a feeling of overwhelming love for them because I know the fear and hopelessness they feel. We have all felt it. It doesn’t matter if I’m going to befriend this person or even get to know them, what matters is that I have compassion for them and they are a walking mirror of courage. No matter if they are from a park bench or Park Avenue, I understand how they feel.

Unconditional Love

To love someone unconditionally wasn’t something that happened to me overnight. It took time, it took patience and it took understanding. I’m grateful that I can love others in the rooms, as they all teach me something. Sometimes its love and tolerance, sometimes its gratitude – especially if that person keeps relapsing. The relapser teaches me willingness and to never give up. They remind me that I never want to feel the way they are feeling at that moment. It’s a little bit selfish for me to say that, but it’s the truth. Their relapse is keeping it green for me and its making me remember. They are keeping me sober and I’m grateful to them. I can even love that pain in the ass person that shares far longer than he should spewing complete crap and slogans out the ying yang – yup; I gotta love that guy too. Love and Tolerance is our code. Isn’t that what it’s all about? isn’t that what everyone wants in the end, to feel loved? I have learned since I came into AA, over a decade ago, that God puts certain people in my life as my teachers and my biggest examples of who I want to be, and who I don’t want to be.

Last year we moved to Florida, and for me it was my 4th move in sobriety. I’ve moved around a lot, but moving in sobriety is like starting over, it’s like being a newcomer again. This move to Florida was no different and I had to put myself out there and tell the Fellowship what was going on with me and open up again to someone. I was able to get a new sponsor pretty early on and she was exactly what I needed. God put her in my life for a reason and I felt like I knew her for years as I could tell her anything and everything and not feel judged. She got me.

A couple months after I started working with my sponsor, she told me that we needed to come to an Agape Retreat. I had no idea what she was talking about and she told me that it’s kind of a subset of AA and it’s held at O’Leno State Park (near Gainesville) and that we had to go. Since I’m not one to shy away from any weekend getaway, I was on board. I had been to a few AA retreats back in California, (where I got sober), and I was more than happy to check it out. I had never heard of Agape and had no idea what to expect. What I found when we arrived at our first Agape retreat in January were camp cabins with no heat and bunk beds. Mind you it’s Florida, but it was down to the mid 30s at night. Not exactly the Hilton, but it wasn’t about the accommodations as I soon learned, it was about Agape and the posse.

We ended up staying in a cabin with heat and I was about to experience what true unconditional love was. Without sharing too much about the Agape experience, I will just sum it up in a few sentences so you can understand it further. It’s usually 50 people or so, all in recovery; or trying to be, as some may only have a few hours sober, or a few days clean. Most come within a 200 mile radius of Gainesville and some of the posse has been coming to Agape for 20 years, like my sponsor, and some are newbies, like myself. Unbeknownst to me, I quickly realized that everyone is there to get closer to God and to have an amazing spiritual experience with the group, as well as with themselves. The level of raw, honest and “from the gut I need to dump this shit” sharing that occurs at these meetings are intense and there is usually a box of Kleenex making the rounds. Most people in recovery aren’t in recovery for just alcohol; there is usually a drug of choice involved, as well as other outside issues that seep into our DNA. These may include early childhood traumas, eating disorders, abusive relationships, sexual abuse and PTSD issues. It’s not a whoopee party of joy, or ceramic ashtray making – what comes out of these Agape retreats is healing. Extensive healing where you shed a layer of your damaged self and feel a little bit better for it. No one in AA, or Agape, claim to be therapists of any type, but being with a crew of people that have experienced some of the same issues and all want to jump on the Ark to find a better way to live and feel OK seems to be more therapeutic than any medicine or treatment program that is out there. Of course, this is all in my opinion and from my own experience.

When you go online and look up the definition of Agape, this is one of the definitions you will find:
“Agape is love, which is of and from God, whose very nature is love itself. The apostle John affirms this: “God is love.” God does not merely love; He is love itself. Everything God does flows from His love. But it is important to remember that God’s love is not a sappy, sentimental love such as we often hear portrayed. God loves because that is His nature and the expression of His being. He loves the unlovable and the unlovely, not because we deserve to be loved, but because it is His nature to love us, and He must be true to His nature and character.”

Being unlovable and unlovely is what drove me to drink and drug. I never felt like I was enough. So when I go to Agape and hear the unlovable are lovable and that Agape love is forgiving and unconditional – why wouldn’t I want to be with a posse that embraces that. Mind you, I get a decent amount of that love and acceptance from AA, but it’s different at Agape. It’s hard to explain unless you’ve been – but basically, whatever the question, love is the answer.

My husband and I just came back from our second Agape weekend and look forward to attending the next one. I’ve had people ask me, “What is Agape?” and like my sponsor told me, I just tell them, “It’s where the unlovable can feel loved and where the broken can be put back together, one piece at a time”.

“IN ALL OUR AFFAIRS” 12 STEPS

 

To all our readers, Recovery Farmhouse introduces Author and recovering alcoholic Russ K. of Tampa.  Here are two very interesting articles about good change that he would like to share with you.   Thanks,- Recovery Farmhouse.  I am including an interview of him that I got off

Becca’s Inspirational Book Blog thank you Becca.

Back to the Basics of a Spiritual Life

skip to article “In All Our Affairs”- here
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Back to the Basics of a Spiritual Life Awakened Living, A Practical Guide to the Spiritual Life by Russell Kyle

 

Screen Shot 2014-12-27 at 1.43.11 PMAs a new year approaches, I’d like to suggestAwakened Living, A Practical Guide to the Spiritual Life by Russell Kyle to help you take steps toward a life filled with more peace and joy.

He agrees with many other philosophers that “the world is what you think it is,” so his first recommended practice is to take responsibility for your life and recognize the true cause of your experiences. He offers 15 additional practices, then finishes with 365 short readings for morning meditation or daily contemplation.

For positive change in your life, Kyle recommends a simple reliance on the “Highest Intelligence and Power governing all,” and recommends building a relationship with this higher power, without pushing specific religious beliefs. He recommends thinking about God, then talking to God, until the prayer experience moves from your head to your heart.

Kyle also recommends meditation, saying “you can achieve most anything” with just this practice alone, done consistently. He offers pointers for meditating and a Guided Meditation you can read or record and listen to. Practicing his daily meditations will bring you into the present and help you “let go and let God.”

He also makes a case for using positive affirmations, giving of yourself selflessly, surrounding yourself with good, and being humble, forgiving and flexible.

Here, Russell Kyle answers my questions:

Author Russell Kyle

BECCA: What hope or message do you wish to offer others with your book?

RUSS: The message I’m hoping to convey with this book is the absolute availability for anyone to develop a spiritually connected life. That beyond the mystical and illusionary is an authentic spiritual way of living and being, available to anyone. My hope is that it may lead those who have always been drawn to the idea of living a spiritual life to living that life. By making easily available to them some of the actions they can take to make this desire real and very much alive. These practices are practices that I know work.

This book doesn’t claim perfect teachings but instead points the way to where what one seeks may be found through practice. Practices directly affecting one’s heart, mind and body. Anyone with a bit of willingness for a positive change, along with an open mind, can grow and learn much from these age-old, and new, practices. The hope I would like to pass on is that good change can happen for anyone. That they may soon see that no matter what they’ve been through, what they’ve done, or even where they now stand, what really truly matters most is only the direction they are headed. And with one small step, one moment, one practice, this new direction can begin. Yet beyond my personal hopes, beyond my personal intended message, is my ultimate purpose: to play my part in any way I can in accelerating the awakening happening right now on our planet.

BECCA: Did any specific personal experience lead you to write this book?

RUSS: Yes, absolutely. My journey toward light began from the darkest of darkness. Due to years of sexual abuse, introduced to heavy drugs at a very young age by my abuser, I quickly became a full-blown drug addict and alcoholic. Parents divorcing and father dying, all this between the ages of 12 and 15. My course was set toward disaster. And I followed. Living on the street. Losing all of my family and friends. Attempts at suicide. Jail and everything else that comes with this lifestyle. I had no place else to go but 6-feet under, or up. Yet up seemed impossible, no matter what was said, who said it or when they said it, I was doomed and I knew it. Though, by some grace of Goodness, I one day stumbled into a group of spiritual people, recovered from many of these vices themselves. They offered a spiritual, non-religious way of life that I latched onto. They pretty much told me what I needed, but explained that finding it was solely up to me. What I needed was a spiritual awakening. And so my journey began… exploring different religions, spiritual practices, traveling and discovering. Practicing and experiencing. The more I awakened, the more I was freed from my past.

It wasn’t long before I began realizing the Universe was leading me to share this message of personal transformation. I cleaned up, sobered up, never to use or drink again. I’ve come to terms with my abuse and forgiven. Freeing myself. All through the power work of spiritual practices. I found that my learning accelerated as I taught and so today, as a student and a teacher, I grow spiritually and enjoy a life beyond what once were my wildest dreams. Am I traveling from place to place in my private jet, millions in the market, family all behaving, no problems, perfect health, perfect everything? No. But I’m coming to accept life on life’s terms. To see the purpose and meaning behind events, those we may label as good as well as those many label bad. Coming to see how this acceptance actually begins to transform not just one’s vison of the world but actual life circumstances and events. In turn, getting what one wants by first accepting things as they come. Living in this world of spiritual paradoxes, exciting, fulfilling and ever expanding. Today I live a deep and meaningful life. Full of purpose and full of unlimited possibilities.

One of the most exciting things about it for me, is that it too, in the very same way, is available to you, to anyone. I know today that the next best thing to having a spiritual awakening is to play a part in the awakening of another. Because of this, and a deep urging desire and love, I have put the basics of my beginning practice in a book for others.

BECCA: Can you explain what you mean by “having an open mind on our understanding of God?”

RUSS: It simply means to continue to explore beyond whatever knowledge, understanding or experience you may have of God. Even if you don’t believe in God, there is an understanding or idea that you are not believing in. For non-believers, I feel this is something still worth exploring. What do you have to lose? So you find out you were right… or not. Either way. The journey, the seeking, is good for the mind and heart. It’s worth the journey. We each have our own concept of the Divine. The only problem with having an idea of how something is, is that we limit it from being more. Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard once said, “When you label me you negate me.” Meaning, when you describe me, you limit me. For example, if I tell you my God is green, then I am also saying God is not red, not yellow, not pink, not orange, and not all the colors ad infinitum. So, as we grow, as our awareness expands and we begin to have some strong ideas on how things are, let us keep in mind that these ideas can limit further understanding. I find that once I experience an ‘ah hah!’ moment, a break into a higher awareness of some sort, it’s best to simply acknowledge it, and then let it go. Not grab, cling and clasp to it. For if I wish to grow spiritually, I must continue to let go of my concepts and understanding, making room for new ones.

The idea is to break our attachment to words and ideas. We easily get hung up on words. For many, the word God itself doesn’t bring up good feelings. As soon as it is used a wall goes up and we shut ourselves off. Like a trigger of sorts. We already have our idea of what the word means, what is probably going to be said and many times have also quickly formed a judgment of the one using the word. All predetermined by the concept we’ve attached to the word. Often this happens without our even knowing it. We never get past the word. We never give ourselves the opportunity to see what this thing is behind the word. There is an old Zen saying, “Truth has nothing to do with words. Truth can be likened to the bright moon in the sky. Words, in this case, can be likened to a finger. The finger can point to the moon’s location. However, the finger is not the moon. To look at the moon, it is necessary to gaze beyond the finger, right?” Right! So we can easily see that we must look beyond our current understanding to really see what we are attempting to see.

Many may be fine with their understanding. It’s working for them. I encourage anyone to work with what is best for them. But to continue to awaken, the confinement by concepts must be broken, and continually broken. Be open-minded: Remain teachable, a student, always willing to honestly consider new points of view and ideas, always willing to change one’s own mind.

BECCA: You recommend both prayer and meditation – how do you differentiate the purpose of each?

RUSS: I’ve heard it said that prayer is talking to God, meditation is listening. I like this but for many it’s become much more, and in many ways very different. It is my experience that the benefits of both prayer and meditation are ultimately much the same. They are a reserved moment to focus on, and connect with, your source of Good. Prayer focuses on a way of building concepts and ideas by word or thought. Placing intentions out into the universe in which the universe will respond. Meditation, for myself, is a way I connect more by not trying. To surrender. To heighten my sense of all parts of my being with all parts in which that being rests. To put the thinking mind on hold and see what else shows up. Even this description is limited as to the unlimited potential of mediation. Like most spiritual concepts and practices we carry, they share similarities, yet the experiences and uses are unique to each. One fact though that most can agree on, most who have tried prayer and meditation enough, is that it works. It works in maintaining, reinforcing and better developing our connection with our deeper selves and the world around us. They heighten our sense of something Wiser at work beneath all things. They raise our awareness to the coincidences and synchronicities. They open our eyes to the awareness of our part in this magical dance of this universe.

BECCA: Is there a time to pray, and a time to meditate?

RUSS: That is probably best left up to each person and what works best for them. The combination of prayer and meditation is a powerful recipe. Some may already view prayer and meditation as the same, again it’s a personal interpretation. Spending time studying other’s views on meditation and prayer has given me a better understanding of the many ways in which to connect with, and sense, ourselves and our connection to our multi-leveled environment. To better connect with the Divine if you will. So I tend to use prayer and meditation both in combination as well as separate as the situation or mood sees fit. I find prayer is quickly accessed and used throughout the day, when riding in my car or walking in the mall, these times meditation might not always be most accessible. Though walking meditations are great for enhancing a mindful state, I usually find sitting quiet most useful during meditation. Again, these are practices you will cultivate as your path forward sees fit. The only requirement is to begin.

BECCA: What would you say is the best way to pray?

RUSS: In my Chapter, ‘Practice Prayer’, I list some specific suggestions on prayer. But ultimately I feel it is a personal experience and practice. What I would tell someone new to prayer, is to just begin. It will develop from there as best fits your needs. Don’t get too caught up in ‘what’ you are praying to. Focus more on the content of your prayer, what or who you are praying for. I’ve found that positive prayer is most effective. Pray in affirmations. For example, “Thank you for the abundance flowing into my life right now,” “Thank you for healing my body,” “I pray for this person, and give thanks for the blessings unfolding upon her right now.” Again, these are examples of some ways to pray. The deeper a prayer life becomes, the more natural it will become.

Take a prayer walk outside, observing and being mindful of your environment, saying to yourself, praying, “Thank you for that flower,” “How beautiful is the sky,” “Thank you for my legs to walk upon, air to breathe and eyes to see.” Prayer which includes appreciation and gratitude tames the mind and opens the heart. It raises the one praying to a higher state. A state in which we see more, experience more and connect deeper. With practice, prayer can become a state of being, a connection we stay plugged into throughout the day.

BECCA: What suggestions do you have for other first-time writers who feel they have an important message to share?

Get it out there. Take care not to get hung up on how others may criticize or judge your message. We have little control on how people take what we say. If something is urging you to get it out there, just do it. As far as how; the only way I know to truly carry a message is through personal demonstration or testimony from those who have been there. For non-fiction writers, simply stick to the truth and how this truth may be demonstrated or has been demonstrated. If you feel a message is important, then you probably have some connection to it already, emotionally, mentally or physically. Whatever your connection, let this be your doorway of bringing it to life, to putting it on paper. What can speak louder than that? As author Wayne Dyer once said, “Don’t die with your music still in you.”

Awakened Living, A Practical Guide to the Spiritual Life by Russell Kyle is available now. To contact Russ with your own questions or comments, email him at AwakenedLivingGuide@gmail.com or connect with Russ at  https://twitter.com/RussellLKyle orhttps://www.facebook.com/LessonsExperiencesOfTheSpiritualPath.

Namaste!
Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra Diaries, Chakra Secrets, Balance Your Chakras – Balance Your Life, and The Chakra Energy Diet

www.theChakras.org

Practice these principles in all of our affairs.  

What does this mean? I’m learning the answer to this every day. It is in the practice that I make progress.

The principles, by my understanding, are the guidelines for living that I learn by following the directions in the 12 steps. The better I get at applying the steps to my real life situations the more I see the principles at work. The principles, as I see it, aren’t really something that can be listed or simply explained, we come to know them by personal experience, by action.

Some of the applicable to life ideas I’m picking up through my practice of this program I’d like to share with you. Of course I’m always learning and some of my understanding of these ideas may have even yet changed since I’ve written them down, but as of now this is some of what I’ve learned, and use.

Step one is teaching me the importance of acceptance. To accept is to not complain, or wish otherwise to be, it is to be content with what is by understanding that it is what it is already. No amount of anything can change that. All that can, and should be, changed is my perspective on what is. As with any change I must first accept where I am. In order to move ahead I have to first approach the starting line, accepting things first as they are sets me in the position for any desired change, but I must accept where I am first. I remind myself often, that things are as there are, so why waste energy wishing otherwise, for they already are. It wasn’t until I fully accepted that I was an Alcoholic that then I could begin seeing the problem of which I had been hoping to change.

It is important to understand that accepting isn’t settling for less, it is putting us in a position for more, able and available to change the things we can and accept the things we can’t.

 

By these actions I’m learning the benefits of honest self-examination, a willingness to rectify my wrongs, the actions to do so, and the joy this brings as freedom and content. I’m being introduced to ways of better connecting to the source of my Good, ways to find new ways and the gift of many opportunities to share and teach these ways to others.

Self-examination has taught me to keep the finger pointed at myself. It is I that is the cause of all in my life, and so the choice to make any changes rests with me too, right here, within my reach. In finding the problem I am introduced to the solution…one of many of the spiritual paradoxes I continue to discover.

I now too have a better understanding of the daily reprieve talked about in the book.  It’s been shown, not just told but shown, to me the necessary actions I must take daily to keep this gift of new life, continued self-examination, amends as they arise, meditation, prayer, open mindedness, honesty and helping others.

I’m experiencing the truth that self-sacrifice is the greatest method of self-help. Yep, another strange paradox, so it would seem. This single way of living, giving of myself, is the best gift I can give myself.  As a servant I am filling the highest position in the AA spiritual community. It is the most prosperous of all trades and lifting of all actions.

Today I live on circulating spirituality, kept in motion by steps 10, 11 and 12.  Step 10 keeps me cleared out for the process, an open channel. Step 11 draws in the necessary power, understanding and peace needed for my daily emotional sobriety. Step 12 is the process by which I give back, on which I allow that same goodness brought in to then flow out. By this I keep my spiritual circulatory system flowing and healthy. By this process I keep the good in my life circulating as well. By this I continually let go of the old making room for the new.

Today I also do my best to focus on the new person. During meetings, if there is a new person, I sit through that meeting thinking ‘what is this new person hearing, how are they hearing it?’ I know, because I was there once. I do this for two reasons. One is to keep my thinking new, as open as the new person. By this I hear things fresh and open. Second I do this so as to know if my group if fulfilling their primary purpose, carrying the message to the new person. It gives me a good idea of how I would want to be approached after a meeting like the one we just had, why? Because right after the meeting I will be fulfilling my personal responsibility and approaching that person to do or say what I can to help. So I keep my attention on the new person and it helps us both. Today I know that when my intentions are on helping, I in return receive in unlimited ways as well. But to receive something for myself falls short in reasons why I have the desire to help, it is deeper. I think it is like this for all of us AAs. Because I have been there, and out of genuine compassion I feel the need to comfort those hurting in that same way that I once did. This compassion along with the excitement of a solution that I know works, I jump at any opportunity to serve AA and the newcomer. I’ve found that here the rewards seem greatest too.

I love the program that saved my life and that has given me back to my family. I do my best to keep the balance between my family and my meetings. When drinking I withdrew from my family life, recovery should not do the same; as the book states on page 129 “The spiritual life that does not include its family obligations is not so spiritual after all.” I know when I need to get to a meeting, and I don’t hesitate to go. I also know when I need to be home with my family and I won’t hesitate to stay. The key is being honest with myself. Early on in recovery I had to just follow directions, my honesty and intuition couldn’t yet be trusted as a good guide. I just did the 90 meetings in 90 days as I was told, and then attended four or five times a week after that for the next year. Today my inner guide, because of my sincere work on the steps is a bit clearer, just a bit though I must say, I have much more to go. I’m finding that the spiritual principles of AA work when applied to anything at home; being a parent, husband, friend, good neighbor and son.

 

 

When in the workplace ‘principles before personalities’ is my lifeline many times. I’m learning to love and tolerate my fellow man, also realizing that they too might just be tolerating me. I’ve found here seems to be one of the best places full of opportunities to help others, whether I’m helping by prayer, by action or simply by good example. When going through my day in a conscious state of self-examination I learn much about myself, where I am, what I like about me and where I need improvement.

The journey of this life is never boring. When working the program the change in my life is so exciting that why would I want anything else. I don’t fear that change today either for I trust my Higher Power that all is happening for Good reason. Even my mistakes, when turned over to my Higher Power are like coal made into diamonds. In fact that is what this whole thing is all about, turning our past to good use and enjoying today as is.

Today a can say, with truth and understanding, that I am a grateful recovering alcoholic. I remind myself each morning with a note on my desk, ‘to count my blessings’ and that each day is a gift, each moment, each person that comes along, and mostly the wonderful program that is saving my life, the program of AA.

Remember my fellow AAs that AA points the way, we take the steps and it is our responsibility to carry the message, in word and in action. I’m doing my best at my part, one day at a time.

Russ K.

Tampa, FL

 

Back to the Basics of a Spiritual Life

Back to the Basics of a Spiritual Life Awakened Living, A Practical Guide to the Spiritual Life by Russell Kyle

RECOVERING SOBER WRITERS WANTED

Tell your sober story.  “What it was like,(addiction) what happened (got sober), and what it’s like now. (recovery as you experience it)”

WRITERS WANTED To post recovery oriented articles on Recovery Farmhouse no professional experience needed.

Basic editing skills preferred.  Please put your article through an editing process best you can. Your writing does not have to be perfect just from the heart.  Writing for Recovery Farmhouse is a little more that just sharing your experience strength and hope.  You are allowed to have an opinion and state it.  However open-mindedness to other people’s views and acceptance for same is a definite plus.  Poetry is accepted too.  Please e-mail me at edgarlaura826@yahoo.com with your articles.
writers wanted

 

 

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