Can the Twelve Steps Solve More Than Addiction?

By Jamie Moon

The true indication that we have real sobriety, of the kind defined later as "a peaceful, calm, contented, serene and well-balanced life," is reflected in how we live our lives outside "the rooms." If we are demonstrating anger in or out of meetings we have not truly acquired the promises. The ability to practice The Program in meetings and with those in the fellowship is easier than in our other relationships like in our family and work lives. The Buddhists call this cloistered virtue. It does not create a "bridge to normal living."

The "bridge" is The Program. Our experience shows that, even when sober, without a strong, powerful Program we become as crazy as we ever were, if we don't relapse or take a sojourn into other addictions. The Twelve Steps have been used to deal with other personal demons, obsessions and addictions. Members have found that once one addiction was "handled" with the Steps, another would often rears its ugly head. With all the other Twelve Step fellowships now, it is truly a wonderful thing. We no longer have to feel sorry for those we see suffering outside our specific program, thinking to ourselves, "You poor guy. I feel so sorry for you. You're not an alcoholic. You can never know the pure joy of recovering within the Fellowship." Today, there seems to be a "nut for every bolt," or maybe a program for every nut? We must acquire honesty, humility, and service and all of the Principles we find in the Steps. We need also eliminate self-centeredness to keep our peace and sobriety. For those who are willing to accept the Twelve Step Program as a means of recovery from any addiction, I recommend a close study of any of the myriads of material written on the experience of the Twelve Steps. Don't just read them, study them repeatedly. These books were written by addicts for addicts and are based upon the trials and experiences of our members of many fellowships. Yes. I dare to suggest that we look at the experience of those in many different Twelve Step Programs. Each edition of the Big Book includes updated experiences of current members with contemporary problems. Just maybe we can learn something from a broad range of experience. The original text of any Twelve Step Program, the Big Book, suggests that, we know only a little. An open-mind is the only way to greater understanding and growth.

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4140 Hits

Practicing These Principles in All our Affairs

By Jamie Moon

When I started these articles four months ago now I said that they would be centred on the Twelve Steps and it is my intention to continue on that theme. This is my forty-fifth article and the last twenty-five have been on the Principle found within the Practice of the Twelve Steps. The more we practice these Principles in all our affairs the better our lives become.

When we first come to live the Twelve Steps as a way of life we come to the rooms believing that the foundation of the Program is the first three Steps. That is certainly true in the beginning and of course not using alcohol, drugs, sex, or any other behaviour to dampen our unmanageable lives will always be necessary—the foundation shifts to our Daily Program. If we have worked the Twelve Steps and do not have a Daily Program to Improve our Conscious Contact with a Power greater than we are. A Program for handling the daily ups and downs of life by Continuing to take personal inventory which includes cleaning up our mistakes as we go. A Daily Program that maintains our Spiritual Awakening. One that we Practice these Principles, which we have been discussing, and others you may fine helpful—in all our affairs. And finally we need a Daily Program where we learn to be of Service in all areas of our lives. If we do not have such a daily Program it is my experience that we have not understood the actual purpose of the Twelve Steps. Un my life it has only been since I have developed a Daily Program that I have been able to maintain the promises in my life. Dr. Bob said that if we are not happy then we may as well not bother being sober. Happiness is an inside job and the Twelve Steps provide the tools to correct those faulty areas inside. The Steps give us a guided tour of our responsibilities in our lives and the Power to be found in accepting our responsibility. Let me remind you of exactly what we are responsible for in our lives. Firstly we are responsible for our feelings and emotions. No one makes us feel anything. The next area we are responsible for is our actions, which automatically includes our re-actions and in-actions. Similar to our feelings, no one makes us DO or NOT do anything. We are one hundred percent responsible for all of our actions, re-actions, and in-actions. Even when we claim that, “we never would have done what we did if it wasn’t for what they did.” The last area of responsibility is our beliefs, which we have learned in our inventories came from our early childhood decisions. Decisions made long before we even knew we were making them. These are the things we will talk about in the next few articles.

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The 4th Step Takes Courage and Lots of It. By Jamie Moon

jamie moon and the 12 stepsCourage is a partner of Honesty; and Honesty means more than simply telling the truth. It involves Honesty in all areas of one’s life and the ability to be true to oneself and one’s role in all circumstances and that takes Courage. Though perhaps one would not immediately associate Honesty with Courage, there are obvious situations in life where to be Honest requires a great deal of Power in the midst of fear.

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