A journey to embrace, explore, and honor the Freedom and Power inherent in active recovery.

No more shame...

No more shackles....

No more secrets.

The path--and the Power--are within. Be Free.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Sleight of Hand

Most things are not what they seem. That's
a given when you see the world as it really is.

But most of us would like to hope that a place
like a spiritual recovery group or a religious
institution would have a few more folks who
are genuine and true in their ranks. Tends to
work out that the reverse is true.

It only makes sense; you get a bunch of
avowed thieves, liars, con artists, manipulators,
hucksters, emotionally bankrupt, self-involved
individuals together and what do you expect?

There's no oath that those present are going
to do right by any set of standards. There's
no authority in place to oversee or maintain
morality in the groups. It's every person for

And, like the 'real world,' those who are the
best at what they do are the predators that
climb to the top of the heap. Maintaining a
masterful level of lies and illusion helps
skyrocket to the top of the recovery heap so
that others are tricked into wanting the same
pretense of serenity, the same mock humility,
the same illusion of success.

When you find out it is all for show, it's
much too late in the game.

The 12 Step groups are a clearinghouse for
some of the worst of humanity, now focused
on using their deception skills and subter-
fuge for convincing people they are  great
human beings, so that fools will open up
to them and be taken advantage of and
kicked around by these emotional
vampires and head cases.

It's the same old story, just with a shiny
new twist. And a smorgasbord of vulnerable,
hurting, sick people to be at the mercy of
another (presumably) dry drunk sociopath
with a need to control and use
others in order to feel alive.


The Master Illusion VS The Big Picture

Sobriety is not a morality
or spirituality issue.
It's a common sense, self-care, and
personal responsibility issue.

Stop looking for excuses and
start caring for self.
Do the work you need to get it right.

If hand-holding and being around
like-minded people is required to
stay sober, then why doesn't 12 Step
heal all the problems one has?
Why can't people stop smoking,
stop being addicted to sugar,
stop being addicted to caffeine?
Why can't they start controlling--
or get rid of--their Super Ego?

If it's so effective and simple,
why are there so many
rules, and so many demands?
Why do you need someone else
to point the way
if you've already discovered
an ultimate and omnipotent source of
power in your 'Higher Power?'

Every person is different.
Yes, even every addict and alcoholic.
The idea that a spiritual journey
can be instructed, or follow
the same format as another is
confused and baseless.

'Let each man search his soul
for his own salvation with fear
 and trembling.'

We have touchstones and guideposts
along the way, but addicts are highly
prone to substitution.
If we simply replace one crutch for
another, where's the growth?
(That's when AA will say "But at least
they're not drinking any more!"
which sort of highlights that drinking
is only a part
of the problem, as well as
recognizes that
AA is its own addiction.)

Addicts want praise and attention;
they have an unquenchable desire to be
accepted and feel a part of something.
The 12 Step outline is such that
the authoritative 'carrot and stick'
is used to manipulate people
into staying if they want to be accepted.
Say and think the right thing in order
 to be treated well.

Only by becoming one with our real,
true selves and accepting ourselves
for who we are
can we find true contentment
and happiness.

A system of adherence and control cannot
provide support for free thought.
It's counter to its very core.


Who's Responsible for ME?

So who is responsible for me?
I am.

No one and no thing besides me.
Not parents, siblings, children.
Not lovers, friends, coworkers.
Not some cosmic entity.

If I deign to put expectation and need
on some external relationship, or
feel compelled to be in a certain place
at a certain time for a certain number of nights,
or depend upon a specific person to
be there for me or hold the answers....

I am relinquishing control over my own life and destiny.

I am allowing myself held hostage to the whims of others
and putting myself at the mercy of being provided
my value or my sobriety by outside matters.

Even depending on an external 'Higher Power'
only allows me to sidestep responsibility.
If I ask for help from this cosmic Santa Claus, and
feel no relief, or am awaiting fate to intervene with
a good enough 'coincidence'/spiritual assistance,
I am saying I have an excuse for doing something
self-destructive if those conditions are not met.

I am at the mercy of 'whatever happens.'

If I need someone to answer the phone
or return a call or be willing to help me
in order to stay sober or clean or sane, then
I am choosing to be powerless rather than
finding my own intrinsic strength and spirit
to survive and thrive.

Using a group or a person or a 'source' or any
kind as a crutch means we are still not spotlighting the
need for self-care. We are avoiding. We are still
looking for externals to solve our problem, which
is the very nature of addiction to.

My problem is self-destructive choices.

Choosing to be dependent upon unreliable sources
is about the most self-destructive, delusional
sabotage I can imagine.

I can have people in my life
as supplemental support,
and I can choose to be helpful and supportive
to others. But when I make a religion
out of those notions, I choose dependence...
and the likelihood of going back out.

Instead, I choose to take control,
observe my power, and maintain my independence.
Powerlessness is a state of mind, not a reality.
We are what we live.
Choose your words, your actions, and your
surroundings wisely.