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, September 29, 2012


Groups like Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous do a
tremendous job at escalating fear towards the 'outside' world, and
promoting the false notion that people working program adhere to
a particular set of ideals.

But in truth, the real danger is not the people or situations in the
outside world,' nor those people within the group who appear to be
angry or inconsistent.

No, the biggest threat is the predator within; The wolf is not at the
door--he's fully entrenched within the innards of the 'sanctum.'

It's the one with the biggest smile who sports the greatest guile.
It's the one who tries to run it all who isn't fit to order lunch.
It's the one who tries and promotes and pushes and begs notice
    who is not at all to be trusted.

There is no cure for "Alcoholic-Acting-Addicts," or--as the real world
refers to them--complete assholes.

There is no magic potion for fakery or con-artistry or manipulation.
No prayer that erases justification and pathological lying.
No amount of meditation that will undo selfishness, ego, and disregard
   of others.
There's no placebo or drug for eradicating cruelty and sociopathy.

And just because some wish to gloss over the negatives with a bucket
   full of wishes and some high-minded 'amends' (whilest they continue
   their depravity full on) does not mean it's effective.

Watch your backs. As every horror movie aficionado knows, the
safe house is always more dangerous than going it alone in the woods!

Friday, September 28, 2012

We are...Unlimited

To my brothers and sisters in A.A. and N.A.:
When it fails to work for you, or when you can admit that it
never really did, know that you still don't need to 'go back out.' 

Lack of 12 Step attendence is in no way adversely connected to
drinking, in spite of what the brainwashing attempts.

The sentiment of sobriety is sound, even if the delivery
and premise of 12 steps are not.

Disconnect the two, and be free.


Thursday, September 20, 2012

"Did I Do That?!?!

Rampant abuse of the whole 'biological determination' theory, as a
catch-all excuse for any habit or drive we have, is undermining society.
This weakness-theory works right alongside the 'disease model' of
addiction handed down decades ago by Alcoholics Anonymous.
The idea of this scientifically-derived compellment for people not
being in control of one's choices (based on body chemistry and DNA)
is a dangerous, built-in avoidance of personal responsibility, and it's
being applied to everything from alcoholism to violence to over-eating.
It's being used to 'explain' :
-Lack of alcohol abstinence (or moderation)
-Lack of tolerance for exercise
-Lack of sexual restraint
-Lack of emotional stability
-Lack of rage inhibiting

Attaching the idea of an imprinted, in-born, 'trait' as being the
culprit behind one's actions is an easy out, a slippery slope, and a
recipe' for disaster. At the end of the day, it means anything we
want or feel strongly enough about can be excused because we
imagine we're simply "built that way." That, in the end, it really is
in charge, and it's eventual-- unavoidable-- that we will succumb
or submit.

It goes back to countless other wrong-minded issues within 12 step
programs that place all power, all will, all ability on Externals, rather
than imbuing the person themselves with power, strength, responsibility,
or capability.

It's a dangerous road to place the burden of blame--or need-- on
something or someone outside of self, but it's equally treacherous
to say we are inhabited by software that is out to destroy us. At the
end of the day, how does one compete with that self-destructive notion?


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Seeing Past the Smoke-Screen

When I find myself in the grip of a deteriorating mood for a day...
or a week...a case of the blahs, all the way to depression,
...I have to recognize the finite nature of those feelings.

No matter how prevalent they seem in the moment.

I have to actively, aggressively step back and remind myself that
the specific time--that whelming emotion--is not the end of the world...
(nor is it indicative of my future.)

 It is a moment in time.
An aspect of life, on the spectrum of it.
A pendulum swing in an ever-cycling world of events, emotion, circumstance.

This too will fall away, give birth to another, revert to type, lessen in
intensity...but it is not the end-all, be-all that my mind and my fear make
it out to be.

We are, in any given experience, only upon a pinpoint of time.
Nothing lasts forever.

Remembering that, and achieving perspective, takes effort.
And practice. But keeping my head allows me to refrain from responding
(or reacting) in fear or discomfort. I can make conscious choices that are
not reflective of my momentary despair and frustration...and thus
avoid creating further misery.


Saturday, September 15, 2012

You Find What You Look For

Why do we use?

What drove us to drink?
What are we avoiding?
Facing these daunting and indepth questions is facing reality,
and at some point it's a necessity for recovery.
Coping with them is vital to any form of success.
A.A., with its all-or-nothing, one-stop, one- size-fits-all mentality
and expectations is harmful.
"I guess you think that's a revolving door."
"Guess we'll keep letting you back in."
"How's that working out for ya?"
"You can't make it work without this program."

Bitter jabs and persecutory, passive-aggressive attacks on people
coming to the group do real and lasting harm. Over-concentrated,
dogmatic, single-track thinking has always been the bane and the
end of many an addict, and having these harsh detriments glossed
over with 'good intentions' and a pretense of happiness doesn't change
their toxicity.

If you imagine that there is only one path to recovery, you condemn
not only others, but yourself. This militancy is adverse to the new
and open views that people in recovery need to be bringing about.

Only when consciousness is expanded to the point that we see
beyond the already-agreed upon notions and ideas can we find
a new version of life. We don't protect our ideas by building walls
around them; we prevent ourselves from growing.

What you see as real is what will become a reality for you;
every time you speak of powerlessness, you bring it into being.

Every time you speak ill of another's chances, you bring that dark
possibility closer to existence.


Friday, September 7, 2012

What Lies Beneath

"Zowie! A fresh coat of paint and this place will
be good as new!"
Some folks feel that a fresh coat of paint and a few tweaks to
the outer shell can shine enough of a good light to distract
from the dingy and dismal greys that lie beneath such a surface.

They imagine the facade to 'be the thing,' and pour time and
money into the covering up of poor construction, rather than
the fixing of the destruction. (Image can never substitute for
substance, though some folks seem to miss that lesson time
and time again.)

There's a vast difference between repairing or replacing a
faulty foundation, and simply remodeling one.

After all, if you spread rose petals over a pile of dog shit, you
still smell dog shit, the shit didn't change into roses, and it's
only an illegitimate quick 'fix.'

You have to get to the core of things, not just cover up disasters,
destruction, and dysfunction... and hope no one digs too deeply.

A fresh coat of paint may look pretty, but the rotted wood under
it will continue to deteriorate, no matter people's impressions.


Saturday, September 1, 2012