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Old 02-28-2014, 01:15 PM   #1
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Default More Recovery Readings - March

March 1

You are reading from the book Today's Gift.
The only thing that makes life possible is permanent, intolerable uncertainty: not knowing what comes next. --Ursula LeGuin
The world around us changes constantly. Trees turn from green to beautiful shades of yellow, orange, and brown in the fall. Yet, even if we watched the trees carefully, every minute of the day, we could not actually see the colors change. Change requires time, preparation, and patience.
To make the changes we want, we need to let go of unhealthy but comfortable patterns that we're stuck in, the way the trees let their colors change and finally let go of their leaves altogether. We can't have total change right now, no matter how much we want it. It's important to accept both who we are now and who we are becoming. Just as the tree trusts without question that its leaves will grow and lets go of them when the time comes, we can believe in our own power to grow and let go of our accomplishments when the time is right.
When we do, we can be assured that our lives will blossom again, like trees in the spring coming to life after a cold winter.
Do I have any new blossoms today?

You are reading from the book Touchstones.
As my fathers planted/or me, so do I plant for my children. --The Talmud
The first seeds of this spiritual program were planted years ago by men who also were desperately in need. Rather than restrict their attention to their own painful circumstances, they broke through to a new creative idea - it is in helping others that we help ourselves. They reached out eagerly to help fellow men and women in need. In the process they carried the message to others and found new healing relationships for themselves. This program, which is saving our lives, is here because men before us were willing to reach out and pass it along.
We inherit countless resources and teachings from both our biological and our "foster" fathers in this program. The gift of a spiritually full life inspires and requires us to do as they did - pass it on. We keep the benefits of our recovery, not by holding on to them, but by planting new seeds from our harvest for those who come after us.
I will give freely of my time and resources because the giving enriches me.

You are reading from the book The Language Of Letting Go.
Letting Go of Anger
In recovery, we often discuss anger objectively. Yes, we reason, its an emotion were all prone to experience. Yes, the goal in recovery is to be free of resentment and anger. Yes, its okay to feel angry, we agree. Well, maybe. . ..
Anger is a powerful and sometimes frightening emotion. Its also a beneficial one if its not allowed to harden into resentment or used as a battering ram to punish or abuse people.
Anger is a warning signal. It points to problems. Sometimes, it signals problems we need to solve. Sometimes, it points to boundaries we need to set. Sometimes, its the final burst of energy before letting go, or acceptance, settles in.
And, sometimes, anger just is. It doesnt have to be justified. It usually cant be confined to a tidy package. And it need not cause us to stifle our energy or ourselves.
We don't have to feel guilty whenever we expense anger. We dont have to feel guilty.
Breathe deeply. We can shamelessly feel all our feelings, including anger, and still take responsibility for our behaviors.
I will feel and release any angry feelings I have today. I can do that appropriately and safely.

Today I will feel good about myself and accept myself just the way I am. I am open and ready to discover all the miracles of this day. --Ruth Fishel


Journey to the heart for March

Find Healing and Magic Within Yourself

She was an Osage shaman. Her land, next to Cathedral Rock in Sedona, Arizona, was landscaped with a totem pole, a fire pit, a bridge leading to her house, and a garden of flowers and rocks. A river ran across her property, singing to all who quieted themselves enough to listen. A teepee stood close by, one used to house the sweat lodge ceremonies.

It was during one such ceremony I had met her. I returned later to talk with her for a while. She welcomed me back, welcomed all who visited her to return to her land. She didn’t call it her land, she called it the land. She said it belonged to us all.

“You don’t have to take this journey,” she said. “You don’t have to travel around searching for spiritual spots. All the wisdom, the experiences, the spiritual places you seek on this quest are within you.”

While it’s fun to go on a trip, and trips often coincide with going to new places in our personal lives, we don’t have to load up the car and hit the road to find what we’re looking for. The places of power we seek are within us. Places of comfort, joy, wisdom, silence, healing, peace. The places we visit often reflect those qualities, reinforce them, remind us that they’re there. But the places, the locations we visit, are only mirrors, extensions of ourselves.

The healing and magic we seek are not someplace else. They are within each of us.


More Language Of Letting Go

Learn to say whatever

“Do you have issues with drama addiction?” I asked my daughter one day, in a serious interviewer kind of voice.

“Of course I do,” she said. “I’m the original drama queen.”

“Can I interview you about it?” I asked.

There was a long pause on the phone. “I’ve got a better suggestion,” she said. “Why don’t you interview yourself?”

I’ve been addicted to many things this lifetime– alcohol, heroin, morphine, Dilaudid, cocaine, barbituates, Valium, and any other substance that physically or psychologically promised to change the way I feel. I’ve been addicted to caffeine, tobacco and nicotine– cigarettes and Cuban cigars– and opium and hashish,too. I’ve been caught up in other people’s addictions to these substances as well. Some people might say I have an addictive personality. I don’t know if I agree with the concept that we can become addicted to people, but if the folks say you can are right. I’ve probably been addicted to certain of those,too.

But of all the addictions possible on this planet, I’ve found my addiction to drama absolutely the hardest to recognize, accept, deal with, and overcome. The rush of emotional energy I feel from drama at the theater, on television (small or big screen), in a book, and most preferably acted out in real life (mine) is the last legal, legitimate jones that society allows.

It’s not politically correct to smoke, act out sexually, be a nonrecovering alcoholic, or shoot drugs. But despite all the evolution in consciousness that’s unfolded and gotten us to this point, drama addiction is more than politically correct.

Drama addiction is in. Right now, for many people, it’s one of the only things giving meaning to life.

Potential guests line up, volunteering to have their relationship and court battles– things which once were guarded secrets– broadcast on international cable and satellite TV. Our society can’t wait to peek and snoop into their lives. Broadcasting real-life soap operas guarantees the ratings will soar.

In 1999, I wrote the above words in a chapter on drama addiction in my book called Playing It By Heart. But the concept of drama addiction, and transcending it, has been around for a long, long time.

In 1937, author Emmet Fox wrote an essay in Find and Use Your Inner Power. The essay’s title was “Don’t Be a Tragedy Queen.”

“Self pity, by making us feel sorry for ourselves, seems to provide an escape from responsibility, but it is a fatal drug nevertheless,” he wrote. “It confuses the feelings, blinds the reason, and puts us at the mercy of outer conditions. … Don’t be a tragedy queen– whether you are a man or a woman, for it is not a question of gender but of mental outlook. Absolutely repudiate a crown of martyrdom. If you cannot laugh at yourself (which is the best medicine of all), at least try to handle the difficulty in an objective way, as though it concerned somebody else.”

Maybe the antithesis to being a drama king or queen has been around even longer than that.

Three tiny Buddha statues sit before me on my writing desk. One is Serene. One is Smiling. One is Sorrowful, doubled over in compassion for the world. All you can see is the top of his head.

“The Kingdom of Heaven is within you,” Jesus said.

“Nirvana is a state of consciousness,” wrote Anne Bancroft, in an introduction to the Dhammapada, a book containing the teachings of Buddha.

Enlightenment and paradise aren’t places we visit. They’re within our hearts and heads.

Say, “It’s a nightmare,” if you must. Even say, “Oh my God, I can’t believe this is happening, much less happening to me.” But whether you say the words with calmness and serenity, bursting with laughter or a mere giggle, or doubled over with compassion for the pain of the world, learning to speak the language of letting go in the days, months, and years of the millennium ahead means learning to say whatever,too.


Decorating Life
The World as Home

by Madisyn Taylor

Each day we choose to decorate our life just as we do our homes.

There are few things more thrilling than having a new house or an empty room to decorate. Our imaginations soar as we consider the many possibilities. In the same way, our lives offer us the opportunity to express ourselves within various contexts, to ask ourselves questions about what we want to see as we move through our days and how we want things to flow. Some people do this instinctively, moving through the various environments they inhabit and shifting the energy with their presence. These people have a knack for decorating life. This can be as simple as the way they dress, the way they speak, or the fact that they always bring a bouquet of wildflowers when they come for a visit.

As we move through the world, we make a statement, whether we intend to or not. We shift the energy one way when we enter a room dressed elegantly and simply, and another when we show up in bright, cheerful colors and a floppy hat. One is not better than the other. It is simply a question of the mood we wish to create. What we wear is just one choice we can focus on. The way we speak to people, or touch them, shifts the energy more profoundly than almost anything else. The words we speak and the tone in which we say them are the music we choose to play in the world that is our home. Some of us fill the space with passionate arias, others with healing hymns. Again, one is not better than the other. We are all called to contribute.

Just as we consciously create an environment within our homes, we can consciously choose to decorate life itself with our particular energy. Ideally, in doing so, we express our deeper selves, so that the adornments we add to the world make it more meaningful, more beautiful, and as welcoming as a beloved home. Published with permission from Daily OM


A Day At A Time

Reflection For The Day

Now that we’re free and no longer chemically-dependent, we have so much more control over our thinking. More than anything, we’re able to alter our attitudes. Some members of Alcoholics Anonymous, in fact, choose to think of the letters AA as an abbreviation for “Altered Attitudes.” In the bad old days, I almost always responded to any optimistic or positive statement with “Yes, but…” Today, in contrast, I’m learning to eliminate that negative phrase from my vocabulary. Am I working to change my attitude? Am I determined to “accentuate the positive…”?

Today I Pray

May I find that healing and strength which God provides to those who stay near Him. May I keep to the spiritual guidelines of The Program. Considering the Steps, taking the Steps — one by one — then practicing them again and again. In this is my salvation.

Today I Will Remember

To practice at least one Step.


One More Day

There is no way to peace. Peace is the way.
– A. J. Muste

So often we look for the easy answers and quick remedies. We want to reach our goals — now. Whatever we’re looking for (peace, love, acceptance) we may be making the mistake of seeing these qualities as concrete, hold-in-my-hand goals.

Gradually, we’re coming to the understanding that those qualities we seek are not destinations; they are paths and directions; we can consiously take. We can’t go out and find love, but we can choose to be loving. There is no path to peace or to acceptance or to understanding, but we can base our lives on these qualities, and by doing so we claim them.

What I seek may already be within my soul.
"No matter what you have done up to this moment, you get 24 brand-new hours to spend every single day." --Brian Tracy
AA gives us an opportunity to recreate ourselves, with God's help, one day at a time. --Rufus K.
When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. --Franklin D. Roosevelt
We stay sober and clean together - one day at a time!
God says that each of us is worth loving.
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