I cannot express how wonderful it is to wake up each day and after my daily prayer & meditation, I have a wonderful message in my email box from The Grapevine. These daily quotes carried me through while I was away from meetings and my fellow members for over a month! I applaude the Grapevine Board & Committee for the vision and foresight to our fellowship with this simple yet powerful tool!
Thank you for all the work you are doing for "our fellowship".
Serene in the South!
Struggling through the last 10 months with my home group being my pillar of strength and searching in the morning and before bed for a "spiritual guide", I take today's quote as a basic life changing hurdle. The confusion of ideas and solutions roaring about in my head go unanswered. "I am responsible for my actions". In the past, I was used to deciding and proceeding with solutions, after considering pros and cons, on a daily basis, whether in my business or personal life. At this juncture of my recovery, I spend a lot of time searching for answers in quiet times by running these decision points through my mind and asking for whatever guidance is available. This is frustrating me and leading me to that place where alcohol suggests that it could help me this time. No friggin' way. Have one of you wandered down this path and found a path other than the "Born again" speech? Thank you - Ken
All of this stopped after I took the steps. I found that there was no time nor energy for self obsession any longer, while I was carrying the message of redemption and recovery (12th Step). Lots of "opinions" around AA rooms about being/not being normal. Our program of recovery guarantees normalcy once we've taken the steps as laid out in the first 165 pages of our Book. c. on page 60 means precisely what it says. I started the getting rid of my old ideas back in the 80's when Joe & Charlie were revving up as circuit speakers. Now they can be found on the internet at www.xa-speakers.org under AA speakers. Their 4th step mp3 is such a simple and accurate guide to taking the 4th step, with simple instructions about the true nature of our Book. My suggestion: if you want AA recovery, read the book, especially the first 164 pages (original basic recovery text). Get to know it thoroughly so that you can use exactly what it says to deal with your daily life. Take a leap and read pages 84-88 daily (10th & 11th Steps). This is a guide for how to live life on life's terms. Immediately dig into taking your inventory (writing the 4th), get a sponsor to read it to (5th step), or go to a minister to do this (my opinion about ministers/clergy is that they have formal education and advanced degrees and are very good at helping us see ourselves in what we've written about our past lives.) Do not make the mistake of thinking and believing that because you have alcoholism that you are doomed to being stuck with so called "alcoholic thinking" for the rest of your life. Taking the steps guarantees us a normal, average responsible life. We just have to do the work, just like all normal people do, in order to become mature adults. It's not rocket science. And about this idea that if I/you pray about a certain topic, that an obvious answer is supposed to appear by 9a.m. (wink) .. get rid of that by accepting that the importance of expression of faith in Creator (my HP name) is the action of the prayer ... it takes humility to ask for help. Take comfort in that and the wait for "an answer" is so much more comfortable.
Remember that thoughts of drinking alcohol for the alcohol are expressions of insanity. Remember that there is no possibility that both insanity and a sound relationship with Creator can live in the same space, at the same time. A wish for the relief of a drink is an insane thought. I arrived at AA insane. I took the steps, all of them, and now have been doing the maintenance steps (10, 11, 12) for 30 years. This has made me an average, normal human being, with normal, average circumstances. I can go anywhere I want. I can do anything I choose, just like a normal, average human can. I am sane, so just like a normal person I can make correct choices about what to do next, based on awareness of my health limitations (history of alcoholism, 3 cancer episodes, blood clots in my left leg, etc.) so my life choices are based on taking into consideration ALL the factors about myself. Not rocket science.
My best to you.
Joe and Charlie revved up as circuit speakers alright. They set the trend for putting personalities before principles. AA runs smoothly on three sets of principles, like a ship running smoothly on three tuned engines. By revving the Big Book up to full throttle and ignoring the Traditions and Concepts, all Joe and Charlie did was tinker with one engine and jammed their spanners in the other two. I don’t think the good ship AA is going sail very much further by running with two disabled engines and with the gear of Tradition Twelve set in reverse. The Big Book is the basic text of Alcoholics Anonymous, just that, nothing more. In my view not enough people are moving on from this basic text to get to understand the intermediate and advanced texts which deal with AA unity and services. By getting to know these it has made me grow to be a lot less cocky than I was. I realize I only know but a little. I’m glad to see that Joe and Charlie are deemed by the group conscience to be outside issues in the Pacific Regional report, because their influence has wrecked AA unity in my area in Great Britain. Amidst the brainwashing of newcomers and arguments, I’m sure a lot have left AA. Some will probably drink and die of alcoholism as a result. In my experience a cult following of Joe and Charlie has turned into a Primary Purpose Group of AA (Dallas) cult. Dr. Bob warned about the dangers of sponsor worship.
Extracts from Pacific Regional Final Report 2010 p 5:
“Outside Issues-Are We on the Precipice”?
“On the third topic, the consensus was that promoting school activities is an outside issue, and that tapes such as “Joe and Charlie” along with books other than A.A. publications are outside issues.” http://www.aa.org/en_pdfs/en_rf_finalrep_aug27-29-10.pdf
Before anyone logs on to XA speakers I think they would do well to log in to the AA Grapevine story archive and read the article “unrecorded” (A.A. Grapevine August 2007) to see how some of these recordings are made. I don’t regard XA speakers to be an AA website. It is yet another multi purpose .org website with a yellow Donate button; an outside enterprise with an implied connection to A.A. I’m wondering what has happened to guardianship of our traditions? Extracts from “unrecorded”:
“…Some speakers are recorded without their knowledge or permission. For instance, one friend of mine, a gay schoolteacher, was horrified to discover that his AA talk had been recorded and sold without his knowledge……. Similarly, if we have to agree to be recorded before being invited to tell our AA stories, then Alcoholics Anonymous has lost its way……Some tapers act as "booking agents" for AA meetings, conventions, round-ups, and conferences. They're business people, and they recommend, as speakers, those whose recordings sell lots of copies………. Generally, tapers won't recommend speakers who won't allow their talks to be recorded, because it's a bad business decision for them…..”
I’m reminded of the words of Bill W:
“Conservative AAs realize that business ventures or solicitations carrying the AA endorsement are truly dangerous to us all. Were this practice to become general, the lid would be off. Promoters, AA and otherwise, would have a field day.” (Bill W. AA Grapevine May 1947, The Language of the Heart page 55)
My disease likes to talk to me, especially if I've been "thinking". I'm not sure what kind of answers you are searching for, but when I was 10 months sober, I searched for answers to why am I an alcoholic. Personally, I found those searches counterproductive to my peace and serenity. For me, trying to figure it all out just allowed my disease to slither through the cracks of my level of acceptance. I had to fully accept that I am an alcoholic....no if's, and's, or especially but's! I choose to follow the directions in the book, work the steps with my sponsor, help others and go to meetings. I had a friend and mentor tell me once that my mind was a scary place to go and I should never go alone! LOL! After 5 years of sobriety, I still get in my head and my disease @#$*'s with me by making little statements like "Just take a shot of vodka". When this happens I simply tell my diseased to "shut the #@*& up" or I say "*$%^ you" and I say it as if my life depends on it, because it does.
In my first year of sobriety, I had the misconception that I would never have fun again, but that turned out to be just another lie my screwed up brain had conceived. I'm having the time of my life. I've never been more comfortable in my own skin! I feel connected to something more powerful than myself and I am constantly learning. This is a program of action and I have found that if I put as much energy into my program as I put into my using (making sure I never ran out of anything!) then I'm going to be FABULOUS! As long as I'm doing what is suggested in the book and by my sponsor, it's a guaranteed deal, but I have to take action. The thought of taking a drink may come to my mind, but every time it does....I look back and see that I was restless, irritable and/or discontent with some person, place, thing or situation in my life. The emotions always come before the though of a drink.....ALWAYS. The trick is to stay aware of what emotions I am feeling and take the appropriate action to get rid of those negative feelings. I have the power to do that now, where I used to roll around in them.
Hope this helped, just a little.
I can really relate to what your talking about. Racing thoughts abound when you have deceisons to make. quieting the thoughts is the best thing to do.I call it the defeatist babbling of the brain. We need to tune into the poitive thoughts and dismiss the negative ones. It takes practice, but it works. As you said alcohol is not the answer at all. Prayer and asking guidance from your higher power helps quite the mind.Sounds like you are doing what you need to do!! thanks for your honesty. Catherine
I find when I have thought's in my Head (Usually Arguing with other People)I have to do a mini Inventory on myself and often find my Proogram is missing something,find Resntments building up and we all know what Resentments can do to a Person.
Alcahol did work at one time but not any more.I find handing thing's over to my higher Power a good way to deal with these Thought's in my Head.Thank You (And the Serenty Prayer said ove and over helps as well.
If you are young in recovery (10 months might be equal to a baby bringing his/her up on his/her hands and knees and trying to crawl and move around - this is not an insult!)acouple of things come to mind. The first is get a SPONSOR! (Remember if you were so smart what the in the #@$% you doing here anyway?) along with this are involved a few actions 1) NO MAJOR CHANGES (job,home,marital,apologies,etc) 2) no cruises. 3) absolutely no personal involvement with any female in AA! (we call that 13th steppin') you can bet one of you will drink and don't forget that the DOOR may not open after a slip! This is a physical disease First and recover starts physically first.. by working on your recovery with a sponsor and getting yourself back on your feet physically your mental obcessions will reduce drastically, if you are serious about recovery you will find a higher power (read the first 164 pages of the Big Book) because in entering the 2nd step you can return to sanity and the 3rd step is turning your will over to the care of God (you decide who the GOD is! not anyone else). This could be handled simply by doing the next right thing! and if you question those decisions CALL your sponsor - he's been there!) Born Again is a Christian statement... we find it also in working the steps and finding that the PROMISES *pg 88 are true - that the 11th step does bring peace to our hearts, and also, working this program in all areas of our lives (read the first 164 pgs. then after your 1st year pick "Emotional Sobriety - The Next Frontier") But again, FIND a sponsor immediately even if it is a temperary sponsor - I am sure that there is a list of temp sponsors list at your mtg! May the God you choose protect you and yours! and if you need a reason for living and the higher power thing bothers you - I stronly suggest you go to Jan 6 in the 24 Hour book and memorize it! It is a reason for living and It has worked well for me (and still does) - Charlie C
A lot of us struggle. Life in today's world is difficult.
In some of Bill W.'s writings he writes about "these troubling times". So they have always been with us. Do you
know what Bill did when he felt restless, especially in
the early days. Bill went to the missions and Towns Hospital
to look for another alcoholic to try to help.
Look around at meetings. Find another soul to help,
even if it is just offering a ride, or lend an ear. Get
involved in a group as a coffee maker. Show up early
for a three month period. Be dependable.
I would to tell you to sit down with a "sponsor"; work
those steps, and you will be Born Again. True, it works
that way for a few. If we could sit a new person down
with pencil and paper, tell them: do this and you will
be sober, that would be great. And again it seems to
work that way for some. But for the average alcoholic
recovery is much more complicated.
Bill W. had the white light spiritual awakening.
I truly believe he was "Born again" in a moment of time.
For most alcoholics the change is gradual, many over
long periods of time. I have been to churches where
they told me I have to find God before the end of the
service. In AA we allow more time, as much time as the
individual member wants or needs. This is entirely
up to each individual to work out on his/her own time
schedule. In step two we are told, take it easy. Easy
does It was one of our first slogans.
Ever alcoholic's dream is to be able to drink one
more time and regain control. If you have come this far, that is not going to happen. never!. I have an AA friend who
struggled for 18 months after her fourth rehab. She
was finally relieved, as she continued meetings, and has
been sober with us for a dozen years. I hope this was
not a Born again speech. I hope you stay the course
and remain with us in AA. ANONYMOUS
The newest documentary about Bill W. is making its way through film festivals and limited screenings. Try to see it.
His white light 4th dimension experiences were a result of the belladonna treatments he was undergoing. This born again idea is misleading. We don't use hallucinogens to find god, but some of us had very similar experiences back in the day when taking drugs. Holding Bill's experiences up as "goals" for us is unrealistic.
This posting is what I would consider misleading. I believe that
Bill W.'s born again experience was the real thing. This
kind of spiritual experience is common and has been
experienced by many, alcoholic or not.
I personally had the same kind of spiritual
experience as Bill W. I had reached a point of desperation,
and asked God for help. "Dear God, if there is a God, in
the name of Christ, please help me! I was relieved of the
obsession in the same manner as Bill W. I was not on any
drug and had been physically free of alcohol for about
60 days. I have heard this same event shared by many
alcoholics over the years.
Bill W., with the help of Dr. Silkworth, developed a
technique, method, of passing this solution to other
alcoholics. Bill describes this on Page 70 in AACA.
I haven't seen the new film, but I will see it
eventually. I do read and believe A.A. history in
Bill's own words.
I feel that the Belladonna message is a harmful
disservice to our spiritual fellowship. But from my
experience the I-SAY FORUM posts messsages from all
points of view. Your point of view disturbs me. ANONYMOUS
I am not the most important member of the gruop, I am only a member. I am not the boss of the group I am only one man that made service. I am not the owner of the group I am only a part of a fellowship
I needed humility to say my name is Fran and I´m alcoholic, I neede humility to recognize that I had many defects and fears. I need humility to recognize I need help. For years I feel that I was a very important person or nobody; I needed humility to recognize that I was a man with my defects and my virtues.
when a roman general take a important victory he could enter the front of his army and of the spoils, in this ceremony was a man by saying each time "remember that you are just a man". I need humility to remember that I only a member of the gruop and I´m not the most important person of the group, even after ten years of service in the group.
After 14 plus years in this incredible miraculous spiritual formula, I totally agree with Bill Wilson's comment here. In summary, AA is a stand alone (needs no backup religious or spiritual program) recipe for reaching beyond the grave to our eternal spirit. We must, however, continue to make spiritual progress which means we are improving our conscious contact with God, as we understand Him, which is Step 11.
For years I ran away for the other people. I like be alone beacause I did not drink like the other people, I always drink more and more speed than other people. For years I feel alone in my home, in my job,in the secundary school, I can stay with other people but I feel alone. when I arrived to AA I already feel alone in my group and the apttude of the oldtimers didn´t help it. Only when I started to talk to others partners I finished feel alone. the fourth step was the finished of my solitunious.
I'TS AMAZING THAT THIS QUOTE WOULD COME ABOUT.I'VE BEEN FIGHTING WITH MYSELF ON WHETHER OR NOT I SHOULD TALK ABOUT SOMETHING THAT HAPPEN IN MY PASS WITH MY BETTER HALF AND I CAME TO THE CONCLUSION THAT SINCE I HAVE ALREADY ASK MY HIGHER BEING FOR FORGIVENESS THAT IT WOULD BE BETTER TO JUST MOVE ON. I DON'T WANT TO CAUSE HARM OR HURT ANYONE ELSE IF IT'S NOT NECESSARY.AND THE STRUGGLE THAT I'M ALREADY DEALING WITH IS ENOUGH.STAYING SOBER IS SOMETHING YOU MUST PROVE TO YOURSELF AND IT'S EVEN HARDER PROVING IT TO OTHERS THAT YOU ONCE HAVE HARMED ALREADY.ANY SUGGESTIONS WILL BE HELPFUL IN CASE I'M NOT SEEING AND UNDERSTANDING MY JOURNEY COMPLETELY.
EVERYTIME I MAKE A MISTAKE, I WELCOME MYSELF TO THE HUMAN RACE, I SAY;GOD FORGIVE ME FOR THAT ONE;AND MOVE ON .
PEACE & LOVE :>)
It's my experience that I had to work the steps over and over
for 24 1/2 years.
I need to reapply All 12 steps
i need to share some things from my past more than once to get free of them
like cleaning house it's a continual job as soon as i get clean of my past it my thoughts and yes some my actions start to get dirty again in recovery
I review and take personal inventory the chief activator the motive for the negativity always and self-centered fear
So again I'm powerless over my thoughts rationalizations I need to turn all my thinking and all my actions over to the care of a loving God
That's where magic happens when things get better for me for us all .
It is only thru the truth that you will be set truly free. 3 and a half years ago I started my journey to freedom from sex addiction by admitting to my spouse about my other life I was living. and it hurt her and me and our relationship but since then I have been on a path that is leading me to freedom. I'm sure she, appreciates knowing because she knew something wasn't right all along. It also concreted my decision to take this awful thing into recovery and do the work, another thing that she also appreciates. Cleaning up our pasts is what the majority of the step work is about. The parts that you leave out you will still have to live with. You will have to resolve the guilt and shame you feel with your sponsor. that is the only solution I see for you. Living with the guilt and shame is not a solution. The last part of your statement shows me that you know this to be true already. Although I don't know the specifics of your problem, I know the truth will set you free.
get a sponsor and develop a relationship with her. learn to trust her and she will help guide you through the process.the most important thing is not harming someone else. there are ways of making amends without directly speaking to the person we harmed. read steps 8&9 so you can continue on your journey.
There is rigorous honesty, and there is stupid honesty.
A friend rushed into the ninth step and revealed a
decretion to his wife. He was doing what he felt was
the right thing. His marriage ended and his children
suffered. Share your secrets with a priest or other
professional sworn to secrecy. We have no right to
buy our own peace of mind at the expense of others.
Just do not repeat sins of the past. I believe God
forgives us if we confess, but just to one other
human being. I have found that even if they ask,
they really don't want to know. Just be a good
person, stay sober, and try to grow in the
spiritual principles of Honesty, purity, unselfishness
and love. Think about others' well being. ANONYMOUS
Truth is always the best ammend possible, but do speak at length with your sponsor and others who have walked this path before you before you decide for yourself when, how, and to whom you make ammends. We do it so we CAN "move on" and change our shameful and hurtful behavior, and so we CAN heal relationships. If "just moving on and forgeting about it worked why would we need all the steps???
A thirty year anonymous person
Good question. The last time I looked, all the steps were
still but suggestions. ANONYMOUS
From the beginning of my journey in sobriety - I knew that I needed to be honest with myself - looking at my character defects as well as my character assets. It is my experience that in long term sobriety - it does not mean I am free from dishonest thoughts but keeping clear of dishonest actions is the key. I intuitively know when I am off center - and it must be rectified immediately!
Only when i accepted that i could'nt go back to the life i had and be sober and happy and content that i became really willing to follow AA's way of life. I had to let go of any reservations about what i was going to do and become a true member of AA.- Jstar.
i heard in the rooms that God puts a chicken on your table but you had to cook it. I am amazed how i still have a lot of the same thinking and judgements about life, the meaning of people's actions, my station in life, my beliefs about who i am, even who God is, etc. and then i end up feeling terrible! Well, if i don't question and change the lies i tell myself, then i'll continue to feel terrible. The first step, for me is to recognize those patterns. AA gives me freedom to do that!
Aa taught nsr that i hAve an obsession and an allergy after 20 plus years of addiction im free to vw me and have no need to use BUT I HAVE TI GO TO MEETINGS EVERYDAY
Sobriety, through Alcoholics Anonymous, is a gift from God. But unlike other gifts, this is one
we have to ask for. And there is a condition. We have to give it away in order to keep it.
Strange, too, is that we give it away by talking about it. Rose
"I did not give my fear away, they took it." I find that quote so on target.
I think as recovering alcoholics, when we face the truth about ourselves, we need GOD. He gives us the strength and courage to change ourselves, and helps us to be a new creation. Cathy g Newark,De
I as a recovering Alcoholic visit myself each day. I do that by taking a personal inventory of my day. I also do that by praying throughout the day that I am doing God's will. The best thing I can do for that day is not pick up a drink, not matter what happens. Catherine G
My sponsor points out to me that we do recover in AA. It says as much in several places in the Big Book. I would start my paragraph, "I as a recovered Alcoholic ...."
When I am given courage and passion,the willingness to have God transform me into his/her useful servant, fear seems to make itself scarce.
In 2008 I woke up one morning with a lot of fear about a big decision I had made two months earlier. As I did my morning meditation the words fear and faith came to mind. I thought, "They can't exist at the same time." I read every entry in "As Bill Sees It" on both fear and faith, and then remembered that I had a book called "Faith" by Sharon Salzberg. In the beginning of her book she says that FAITH is an action verb in Pali, Latin, and Hebrew. It is "to faithe" and it means to take the next step. I thought, "Oh, right, the antidote to fear is taking the next step." So "Into Action" is the bedrock of FAITH.
Thank you so much for your take on faith. Taking the next step is sometimes all I can do. The good thing is that it leads to the next step, and the next, and pretty soon my struggles are more past than present and I can look back and see that my life is changing for the better.
Did you ever search for your house keys and find they were in plain sight all along ?
Only when I admited that I had a proplem with alcohol I went to AA, only when I accept that I was alcoholicI stopped drink. Only when admited I had lots of fears and defetcs I tried change it.
True humility...attraction rather than promotion.
Exactly at the right time is when I read this... sound familiar anyone? Thank you very much for sharing this quote today. I may have to frame todays quote, I am grateful for the gift you helped me see. Jane
I love our little sayings and anachronisms. Since coming to AA in '81, I have been fond of one that's an offshoot of "some are sicker than others". I like, instead, "Some are thicker than others"
Absolutely love it on so many levels.
Great Idea to announce that GV Quote of the Day is now available. I like to encourage people to read the GV at my meetings, and maybe the Quote of the Day is a way to get more people interested!
Craig in Lincoln, NE
At the meetings I attend the "how it works" is read at the start of each meeting to remind us just that - the "how". The traditions are the "why" it works. I believe it is our founding fathers who had the forthsight to put these simple suggestions in writing which has allowed this fellowship to grow and thrive for over three-quarters of a century. Most certainly divinely inspired, the traditions are important and spiritually infused guidelines to keep me on my path of recovery and in so doing, on my continually evolving path of life. Susan R.~ Harrisburg, PA
Alcoholics Anonymous "grew and thrived" for 57 years.
We have fewer members today than we had two decades ago.
We have made many mistakes, blunders, Bill called them.
The reading of "How it Works" aloud at meetings is the
worst mistake we have made. This has been explained numerous
times on the I-SAY FORUM. ANONYMOUS
I didn't get any grapevine quotes like that. Why are you talking about that on the quote of the day thread. start a new thread for negatives like you.
That's where I found it. That is where I made my reply.
Not the point of the comment that you replied on. However, your poiint is noted, accepted, and tolerated. Thanks for sharing. I feel very doubtful that the "worst mistake we have made" involves a reading at the beginning of a meeting. But I can certainly to agree to disagree on that.
I am new to reading these comments. Can you explain why it is a mistake to read "How it Works" aloud at meetings" I am very curious as many, if not all, of the meetings I attend do this.
There are numerous postings on I-SAY explaining this in
detail. I ask you to examine them closely. On page 159
in AACA, Bill wrote about where he placed HIW. Bill wrote,
"The backbone of the book would have to be fitted in
right here". At the top of page 160 Bill wrote "This
problem had secretly worried the life out of me".
Yes, many if not most, AA groups read "How it Works"
aloud at meetings. We ignore, and disobey the advice
given to Bill by Dr. Silkworth. Bill writes that without
this advice, AA could never have been born. It is the
cart before the horse IDEA. If Bill writes that AA could have never been born without this advice, I think it is
at least worth investigating. Our AA membership has been
stagnant for two decades, churning, helping and holding
a few. Dr Silkworth offers us a technique for the
wholesale recovery of alcoholic sufferers. ANONYMOUS