Step 2 isn’t just about coming to terms with how our thinking and behavior have been insane. That's kind of obvious. And, I’ve discovered, it's slightly more than coming to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
My current understanding of Step 2 has been informed by a persistent history of making mistakes, resolving to "be better," and making those mistakes again. And again. And again.
So Step 2 is a chance to fully accept the implications of Step 1 — the "I can't fix myself" part — and along with that, it is complete surrender to the idea that spiritual transformation at depth is imperative if I want to become "happily and usefully whole."
Piece of cake!
I’ll explore more about this on November 18 — join us at Colonial Church.
On November 18, I’ll speak personally about the family disease of codependency. I’ll use my story to describe the illness of codependency and its progression from infancy to adulthood — and beyond, into parenting. Join me.
On Saturday, October 14 I will take a look at what I am truly powerless over, and how acting out of my dysfunctional thinking makes my life unmanageable. Then I will share how instrumental the practice of centering prayer has been in my recovery: how it has helped me to understand my powerlessness not as a challenge or deficit, but as part of the reality of being human. Join me.
I can’t sum up the subject of my talk on Saturday, October 14 any better than the Big Book does, on page 58:
"If you have decided you want what we have—and are willing to go to any length to get it—then you are ready to take certain steps."
Hope to see you at our workshop.
Emotional sobriety — it's the next frontier. I have worked this subject for 55 years; it's been hard but more than worth it. Why? Because of the joy, freedom, peace, serenity, and love that I live in now. I still have more work to do, and that's great, because each time I go through another character defect I get a little healthier. (Let's not be afraid to work the program!)
Step 11 says "Sought through prayer and meditation..." In Centering Prayer meditation, we tend to the meditation portion of this step — but what about the prayer part?
Join me this Saturday, May 13, as I share one of my favorite types of prayer of late: Welcoming Prayer, a resource from Contemplative Outreach, the national organization that promotes Centering Prayer. I find it to be just the right antidote for the discomfort that can come as our unconsciousness unloads through the “divine therapy” of the Centering Prayer practice.
I’m looking forward to being with you!
On Saturday, May 13, I’ll be talking about Step 12 — specifically, how the transformation that occurs with Centering Prayer lines up and informs our ability to “practice these principles" and "carry the message to others."
See you there.
The Big Book tells us that with Step 10 “we have entered the world of the Spirit,” and “Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will into all of our activities.” For me, this translates into maintaining constructive relationships with the world around me.
But who or what are my “stakeholders” and how do I attempt to maintain these relationships?
I’ll reflect on these and other issues on April 8. Join us at Colonial Church.
So — why am I so angry all the time? Why is my behavior so outrageous? Why can't I maintain relationships and more? Who’s responsible for this? How can it change?
How can I change?
Let's explore emotional sobriety together on April 8.
Centering Prayer is a relationship with the God of our understanding. Everything we do in it — carve out time and space, sit quietly with eyes closed, allow our thoughts to drift by, recall our sacred word — is in service of this relationship. I believe my discovery of this practice, and my willingness to return to it, are a pure gift of my Higher Power.
Everything in the Twelve Steps is in service of this relationship too. The Steps enable us to develop a personal relationship with our Creator by helping us remove the obstacles that are blocking us from it, which, as it turns out, are also the things that block us from true partnership with others.
The 8th and 9th Steps require us to move toward the people we have hurt - to consciously move toward the pain we have caused, rather than continue avoiding it. In so doing, we get to face who we are with honesty and humility, and as we learn to forgive, we start to learn what it means to be forgiven.
Join me on March 11, when I’ll share what I’ve learned about this vital process.