1-16-22 Moving Forward

Moving Forward

As we emerge from the strangle-hold our addiction has had on us, we may think everything is going to be great now. We won’t have anymore problems because we have stopped using or drinking. Actually we are just getting started on our road of discovery. We soon find we have created problems that we now need to deal with. It is vital that we have some help in moving forward because we have not thought clearly for a long time, and just stopping an addiction is like — when a horse thief sobers up, you now have a sober horse thief. We need to apply ourselves to a new discipline of discovery and awareness about ourselves, and how we can live in the world in a healthy and dignified manner.

“It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of ACTION and rest on our laurels. We are headed for trouble if we do, for alcohol (addiction) is a subtle foe. We are not cured… What we have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition.” BB pg. 85.

We once squashed our emotions and feelings with an addiction. We can now still not be in touch with our higher power and our proper place in the world by letting our ego, our fears and selfishness run the show. It is like we keep blinders on and say, “I’m doing well enough.” To let go of the selfishness and fear is not easy. It might seem like there is such a big and confusing world to deal with, that we want to retreat and not have to take an honest look at ourselves. This is when we need help in moving forward, and not retreating again. A sponsor, and or a program of recovery, counseling, a renewal or a beginning relationship with a spiritual organization, is essential in recognizing and acting on the fact that we need help.

Our lack of awareness is like being chained in a cave staring at a wall and thinking the shadows we see are reality — paraphrased from Plato. Long after we have stopped our addiction we can still be bedeviled by trying to live life on OUR terms. We may still have difficulty in relationships, resentments, yearning for more when we have plenty, fearing the future and resenting the past, and wondering why we feel an underlying current of discontent. We are now addicted – attached, to thinking and manipulation and denial.

If you pay attention you may have an almost constant commentary going on in your head. You are living in a self-made soap opera. No wonder there is so much drama. Some thoughts may be happy, many are — what they said, what I should have said, what I will do, what I should have done, having a fantasy dialogue, taking actions that are imaginary. Below all that is an awareness, sense of peace, stability, and connection we deny by constantly overriding it.  

Osho, — “I reckon we’re ready to eradicate attachment when we only have enough from its consequences. It is not a matter of time or choice. It is a matter of inner readiness. When we are ready to experience abundant inner peace, we will instantly work on eliminating every source of suffering and the most destructive one is attachment.

I’m simply saying that there is a way to be sane. I’m saying that you can get rid of all this insanity created by the past in you. Just by being a simple witness of your thought processes. 

It is simply sitting silently, witnessing the thoughts, passing before you. Just witnessing, not interfering not even judging, because the moment you judge you have lost the pure witness. The moment you say “this is good, this is bad,” you have already jumped onto the thought process. 

It takes a little time to create a gap between the witness and the mind. Once the gap is there, you are in for a great surprise, that you are not the mind, that you are the witness, a watcher. 

And this process of watching is the very alchemy of real religion. Because as you become more and more deeply rooted in witnessing, thoughts start disappearing. You are, but the mind is utterly empty. That’s the moment of enlightenment. That is the moment that you become for the first time an unconditioned, sane, really free human being.” 

Meditation is something which can always be further developed. It has no boundaries, either of width or height. And lets remember that meditation is in reality intensely practical. One of its first fruits is emotional balance. Big Book

The Key point — is to keep opening our hearts to suffering without shutting down. Slowly we learn to uncover the limitless qualities of love, compassion, joy, and equanimity, and to extent them with others. To train in making our hearts this big takes bravery and kindness”.
Pema Chodron, Comfortable with Uncertainty

As we go through the day we pause when agitated or doubtful … and ask for the right thought or action. We constantly remind ourselves we are no longer running the show, humbly saying to ourselves many times each day, “Thy will be done”. We are then in much less danger of excitement, fear, anger, worry, self-pity, or foolish decisions. We become much more efficient. We do not tire so easily, for we are not burning up energy foolishly as we were when we were trying to arrange life to suit ourselves. It works — it really does. Big Book – pg. 86, 87.

To move forward we must make the effort. We must have a discipline in caring for ourselves physically, mentally and spiritually. We have heard a lot about self-care and practices to bring us into alignment with our spiritual connection, but how much do we actually practice?

Find the desire to better yourself. Have the discipline, and seek out the support to raise yourself to higher levels. Make no excuses or rationals about not doing as much as you can. Take things slowly at first, trying to change too much too fast can discourage you and you stop all improvements. Start slowly, but start! A discipline takes effort at first, but it soon becomes just a natural part of life that we miss when we don’t engage it. We wonder why we kept slogging through the muck for so long when there is a wonderful light-filled path available.

Have your motivation to be healthy, and to be as good a steward as you can be to the earth and other people.
Make the effort, keep it simple, be kind, and enjoy. 

How do you fill your bucket? One drop at a time
The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step
The great arises out of small things that are honored and cared for
May you be well. May you be happy. May you find peace.

Heart Of Recovery web site  — fcheartofrecovery.com