January 16, 2013

Gratitude for Beliefs that Breathe

I appreciate  the feedback  on my recent shares!

I was surprised myself to see how much I struggle when someone stays stridently resistant to any part of Step One. Reflecting more, I came into touch with the sorrow underneath my frustration and impatience. 

Not everyone who rejects program, tells us why, so when a person speaks their mind, I am grateful.  I also want to understand, and  respect our differences. But I cannot deny that it hurts to see someone hurting choose to stay outside our sphere of healing.  

For me, our Twelve Step rooms were my place of last resort. Maybe that is why I get dismayed when a hurting person does not see value in program. 

Still, with my unexamined biases, I create conflict. When I am seeking to share solace, and my efforts are rejected, that is conflict. It also happens inside of me, when I fight someone else's truth.    

In recovery my job in dealing with relapse in an open-hearted way, is to be willing to "kill the Buddha." That is, to be willing to let go at any time when I find myself attached to one right way, even if it is the way I did program "last" time. I can be unwittingly attached because of my fear of relapse, which makes me rigid. Fear of relapse can and has put me right on track for losing my sanity. It's one of those most awful conundrums. 

Today I can see that every time I've found myself in  a relapse situation there is some kind of conflict taking place, some thoughts I am resisting.  Some larger truth I am afraid of.  There is direct conflict between who I think I am, and who I want to be. Those are fears I must admit and face.  

Even when I am happily on my recovery path any belief  I hold onto limits my experiences, makes my world small, and limits my sphere of sacred space. Limits the power of my spiritual  awakenings and experience of healing.


  1. Get over yourself.

    Mind your own business and take your own inventory.

  2. "there is some kind of conflict taking place, some thoughts I am resisting."

    I learned that what keeps us bogged down in relapse is our thinking. We are our worst enemy. Our thoughts havel an impact on our behaviors in ways we can't even understand sometimes.

  3. Anonymous,

    My thinking aloud and attempting to apply Buddhist concepts to my program, may have muddied the waters. I am a person who is vulnerable to relapses of the psychiatric type. Anxiety fuels really self-destructive thoughts and I find mySELF challenged to find a more honest way to do my program.

    My inner self-judgments mirror the same conflict I have with others who may be at their own beginnings, struggling to believe in program. Perhaps you misunderstand the intent of my writing. It is to look closely at my judgment. Of myself and others. So that I can step past them.

    I need to address these away from my meeting rooms, so I can better catch myself before I go about judging folks. I am starting a meeting in my hometown and want to be aware of what I am packing so I can put it down and listen.

    I find the conflict with others is exactly the conflict I have in judging myself. Or trying too hard in my program, to do things a "certain" way.

    Anyways, thanks for both comments and your understanding.

    Best, Smitty

  4. PS, Anon, I really was talking about my own emotional reaction seeking self-understanding. It could be the judgment you are seeing is a case of projection. Seriously.

  5. I think that you are doing great, Smitty. Starting a meeting in your new town is a good idea.


I welcome your thoughts. Keep me honest~