Endigar 649 ~ Accepting Success or Failure

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on March 1, 2015 by endigar

From the Daily Reflections of December 26;

Furthermore, how shall we come to terms with seeming failure or success? Can we now accept and adjust to either without despair or pride? Can we accept poverty, sickness, loneliness, and bereavement with courage and serenity? Can we steadfastly content ourselves with the humbler, yet sometimes more durable, satisfactions when the brighter, more glittering achievements are denied us?   (Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 112)

After I found A.A. and stopped drinking, it took a while before I understood why the First Step contained two parts: my powerlessness over alcohol, and my life’s unmanageability. In the same way, I believed for a long time that, in order to be in tune with the Twelve Steps, it was enough for me “to carry this message to alcoholics.” That was rushing things. I was forgetting that there were a total of Twelve Steps and that the Twelfth Step also had more than one part. Eventually I learned that it was necessary for me to “practice these principles” in all areas of my life. In working all the Steps thoroughly, I not only stay sober and help someone else to achieve sobriety, but also I transform my difficulty with living into a joy of living.

 

END OF QUOTE

—————————————————

10993434_803027369732592_2474610434214147842_n

I do not know how to take a message of recovery to those still suffering as an event separate from a lifestyle of devotion to the principals of the program.  Just as the unmanageability of life is linked to a surrender to being powerless to alcohol, the helpfulness of recovery is a fruit of devotion to self-improvement and transformation.  When my character develops in strength, my message of recovery will grow in credibility.  This is an effort worthy of devotion.

Rest in peace, Leornard Nimoy.  He lived long and prospered. It was not a shock, he stayed with us for as long as he could, and I really appreciate that.

 

Endigar 648 ~ At Peace with Life

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on February 25, 2015 by endigar

From the Daily Reflections of December 25;

Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will into all of our activities. “How can I best serve Thee — Thy will (not mine) be done.”   (Alcoholics Anonymous, page 85)

I read this passage each morning, to start off my day, because it is a continual reminder to “practice these principles in all my affairs.” When I keep God’s will at the forefront of my mind, I am able to do what I should be doing, and that puts me at peace with life, with myself and with God.

 

END OF QUOTE

——————————————-

2-the-pathway-of-life-connie-tom

Following the will of God means that you seek your Higher Power for direction and make your daily living a matter of following what you understand those directives to be.  It implies communications, with an emphasis on increased skill in hearing and discipline in limiting what we say or petition our Higher Power for.  It is my understanding that those seeking the daily will of Gomu (God of my understanding) use one of four approaches, or a combination of them all.  They are the Logos Leggers, the Mystic Mergers, the Synchronistic Bump-a-longs, and the Iconic Visualization and Replacement Performers.

The Logos Leggers are those who do not trust listening to voices in their heads because of past problems with mental or psychological problems similar to dissociation disorders.  So they are dedicated to some form of Sacred or Trusted text, such as the Big Book or the Bible or the like.  Their morning meditations amount to study sessions.  They are able to trust God to speak primarily in this fashion and are quite wary of other approaches.  They tend to think of the guidance of God as a revelation of written mission orders to be fulfilled.

The Mystic Mergers expect to develop the ability to hear an internal guiding voice, and that all revealed directives are designed to foster spiritual intimacy between the mortal and their God.  They expect mystical connections that transform their sensitivities so that they can communicate with the Higher Power on a continuous basis.  They expect to move to a state of transcendence, and thus the goal is transformation.  It is all about the relationship.

Synchronistic Bump-a-longs are similar to the Mystic Mergers, except they seek to become aware of a path that leads them to a child-like trust of God as an all encompassing force.  They seek a state of morning serenity and then look throughout the day for magical hints to pull them along a path.  The goal is to become trusting and sensitive to omnipresence of Gomu (God of my understanding).  These people tend to put more emphasis on hear God through other people.

Finally, the Iconic Visualization and Replacement Performers see a central figure as the one you visualize and seek to become, replacing all personal expressions with attempts to become whatever you favorite icon is. You imagine how your Icon would behave in your place and you seek to emulate that icon.

I have done all four and often do a combination in my personal approach.  The Mystic Merger is my personal favorite.

 

 

Endigar 647 ~ A “Sane and Happy Usefulness”

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on February 24, 2015 by endigar

From the Daily Reflections of December 24;

We have come to believe He would like us to keep our heads in the clouds with Him, but that our feet ought to be firmly planted on earth. That is where our fellow travelers are, and that is where our work must be done. These are the realities for us. We have found nothing incompatible between a powerful spiritual experience and a life of sane and happy usefulness.   (Alcoholics Anonymous, page 130)

All the prayer and meditation in the world will not help me unless they are accompanied by action. Practicing the principles in all my affairs shows me the care that God takes in all parts of my life. God appears in my world when I move aside, and allow Him to step into it.

 

END OF QUOTE

———————————————-

Dharma_Wheel_by_QuicheLoraine

In this reflection I am asked to consider the balance between the mystical magic and its practical expression in living one day at a time. Understanding the significance of the message encapsulated in the 12 Steps and developing pragmatic expressions of that awareness is akin to the study of Dharma in many eastern systems of belief.  In fact, practicing the principles and doing the work of progressing in the Steps of the program, I think, could be called the Dharma of AA.

(Image Credit to Loraine A. Baird aka Quiche Loraine of Deviant Art)

Endigar 646 ~ Recovery, Unity, Service

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on February 21, 2015 by endigar

From the Daily Reflections of December 23;

Our Twelfth Step — carrying the message — is the basic service that AA’s Fellowship gives; this is our principal aim and the main reason for our existence.   (The Language of the Heart, page 160)

I thank God for those who came before me, those who told me not to forget the Three Legacies: Recovery, Unity and Service. In my home group, the Three Legacies were described on a sign which said: “You take a three-legged stool, try to balance it on only one leg, or two. Our Three Legacies must be kept intact. In Recovery, we get sober together; in Unity, we work together for the good of our Steps and Traditions; and through Service — we give away freely what has been given to us.”

One of the chief gifts of my life has been to know that I will have no message to give, unless I recover in unity with A.A. principles.

 

END OF QUOTE

——————————————-

PENTAX Image

Dawson Earle Trotman (March 25, 1906–June 18, 1956) was an evangelist and founder of The Navigators.

Trotman founded The Navigators in 1933 and through this worldwide Christian organization supported various Christian ideals: maintaining the basic disciplines of the Christ-centered Spirit-filled life, abiding in the Word of God, the importance of personal follow-up, one-on-one discipleship training, scripture memorization, and principles for multiplying Christian disciples, laborers, and equippers around the world. He lost his own life on June 18, 1956 while rescuing a girl, Allene Beck, from drowning during water-skiing in Schroon Lake, New York.

Dr. Billy Graham said: “I think Daws has personally touched more lives than anybody I have ever known.” His work and writings were instrumental in the creation of the Campus Outreach ministry, which focuses on discipleship as a method of building up the community of Christians on college campuses.

(SOURCE:  Bio tab on Dawson Trotman in Wikipedia)

I encountered the Navigators when I was in the Air Force.  They had little discipleship kits you could buy from them complete with scriptural memorization cards and guide books.  I really enjoyed the pragmatism of the approach.  I mentioned Dawson Trotman here because the contributor to the Daily Reflections spoke about the three legged stool.  This is something that his AA group took from the Navigators: (The Wheel History of the Navigators).

The illustration is about achieving a balanced spiritual approach.  It is a wonderful idea if you are a piece of furniture.  Wouldn’t it be better to think of three or four breasts you can suckle from our Higher Power that nurture growth, which is never a stagnant process.  You could chose the most valuable faucet based on your personal need, once you discover it.  It is more beneficial to me.  Maybe you would do better with having access to as many tools as possible in your toolkit.  The point is, I suppose, that we need exposure and expression of the three legacies in our lives to keep and give away the serenity we find in these rooms.

 

 

Endigar 645 ~ Principles, Not Personalities

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on February 15, 2015 by endigar

From the Daily Reflections of December 22;

The way our “worthy” alcoholics have sometimes tried to judge the “less worthy” is, as we look back on it, rather comical. Imagine, if you can, one alcoholic judging another!   (The Language of the Heart, page 37).

Who am I to judge anyone? When I first entered the Fellowship I found that I liked everyone. After all, A.A. was going to help me to a better way of life without alcohol. The reality was that I couldn’t possibly like everyone, nor they me. As I’ve grown in the Fellowship, I’ve learned to love everyone just from listening to what they had to say. That person over there, or the one right here, may be the one God has chosen to give me the message I need for today. I must always remember to place principles above personalities.

 

END OF QUOTE

——————————————-

10997298_10205015897294549_7922726450026612224_n

“We want to stay out of this controversy. We do not want to be the arbiter of anyone’s sex conduct. We all have sex problems.” (Alcoholics Anonymous, page 69)

My stepson died of an overdose in 2007.  He could never really process the rejection of his biological father.  The bio-dad started tagging pictures from the Facebook memorial page that my former wife established.  I was livid and I felt that I was having to accept the unacceptable.  My grief came rushing back, and I knew that emotional anguish was pushing me toward relapse and possibly some rash action.  I sent out a notice to my friends of Bill for prayer and then took off to meeting.  I reached out to connect in the rooms.  This is a miracle response from an alcoholic.

Then someone spoke up who had also lost a son and knew of my life, and did not approve of my BDSM sex orientation.  He told me that he had experienced overcoming the selfishness of using his grief for an excuse to relapse, and that I would not find serenity until I was in the Will of God.  I was thankful for his need to confront me at this vulnerable time because he reminded me of what I never want to be again.  That is the one regret I had with my stepson, was that I was too religious to embrace him completely, like he really needed.  I was more concerned about him mouthing the proper words and living a churchian homogenized life.

Someone else spoke in a genuine fashion that gave me the exact words I needed to hear.  I am still sober and still processing the grief and resentment.  I just did not realize how much of an issue this is for me.  And as far as the religious in the rooms, I pray that I do not become the thing I hate by responding to judgement with judgement.

RitL-logo-130

Oh, and I participated through a phone meeting in a 12 step group called Recovery in the Lifestyle, in case you also have a BDSM sex orientation and would like to find others in recovery who can adapt the program to the paradox of power exchange relationships.

Endigar 644 ~ Listen, Share, and Pray

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on February 8, 2015 by endigar

From the Daily Reflections of December 21;

When working with a man and his family, you should take care not to participate in their quarrels. You may spoil your chance of being helpful if you do.   (Alcoholics Anonymous, page 100).

When trying to help a fellow alcoholic, I’ve given in to an impulse to give advice, and perhaps that’s inevitable. But allowing others the right to be wrong reaps its own benefits. The best I can do — and it sounds easier than it is to put into practice — is to listen, share personal experience, and pray for others.

 

END OF QUOTE

————————————————

hulk_vs__she_hulk_by_bennyfuentes-d5kx4qc

(Click Image to Source Credit)

 

I am not much of one to participate in people’s active quarrels.  I do have enough co-dependent tendencies to get sucked into a futile peace-keeping missions to manage social situations to prevent anything from ever occurring in the first place.    When the self-will of an alcoholic (or addict) is running riot, it really is an exercise in futility.  Sometimes consequences and the resulting desperation is a gift from God and I don’t need to get caught in the crossfire.  If sharing my personal experience is not desired, it is time for me to go back to the house and let the chemical hell take its course.

I keep a page on this site for important things to remind myself of when I am sponsoring or doing 12th Step work ~ click here.

Endigar 643 ~ The Rewards of Giving

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on February 7, 2015 by endigar

From the Daily Reflections of December 20;

This is indeed the kind of giving that actually demands nothing. He does not expect his brother sufferer to pay him, or even to love him. And then he discovers that by the divine paradox of this kind of giving he has found his own reward, whether his brother has yet received anything or not.   (Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, page 109).

Through experience with Twelfth Step work, I came to understand the rewards of giving that demands nothing in return. At first I expected recovery in others, but I soon learned that this did not happen. Once I acquired the humility to accept the fact that every Twelfth Step call was not going to result in a success, then I was open to receive the rewards of selfless giving.

 

END OF QUOTE

————————————–

reaching-out-in-the-darkness

The goal of my recovery is to be able to give without the fear of being diminished.  Normally I would need to know that I will be appreciated, loved, and respected for the success of my activities.  This is the life of isolated self exaltation.  This is how I protected myself from being drained by any attempt to help others.  In recovery I am guaranteed nothing but connection within the Fellowship and with my Higher Power.  I can now enjoy a secret empowerment that allows me to risk giving without ensuring reward.  In this endeavor, I am in union with an infinitely powerful and loving Spirit, my Gomu (God of my understanding).

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 215 other followers