January 27, 2013

Losing Your Religion?

Anon, I hope we will meet eye-to-eye, heart to heart. 

 I hope it is clear that nothing I am saying,  is directed at anyone in particular. If it reveals judgment, oh well, I am human. I've tried to use real things that can happen in meetings, when any of us attaches to this simple path and any right way to do it. I, just like anyone else, can find myself nursing righteous ideas about the right way or even the best way to do program. All that just gets in the way  of open-hearted learning. 

I wonder sometimes about an idea that we inherited from AA:  that only those that keep going to meeting stay well. That fact is simply not verifiable. 

Is it awful when, as folks committed to program we find ourselves moving out of the rooms into a larger world?   What if my life detaches me  from my usual meeting, like it was when I moved from a town which had an  EA meeting. For those of us who do our recovery online, do you panic when the connection is broken? 

There comes a time when we have to believe we too can also live a healthy life without a meeting.  Without being attached to this right way and these particular people. 

We can grow spiritually beyond our rooms. We can give the wonder and beauty of recovery to our friends, practicing these principles, so more people are attracted to the rooms.  And  realize that each newcomer from the World-at-large bring us insights too. Otherwise,  our meetings become a club  that turns us into people that judge others outside our meetings...  as being less aware, less honest, less willing and predisposed to relapse. 

Truth is, we are them. Sometimes we've just  lined ourselves  on opposite sides of the same street from each other. 

Let me illustrate this with the story of a god who knew that humans like to form clubs and religions and political systems, with those who agree with them. We can see it when people decide to take sides and carry pickets, marching in public, screaming for their side.

The god made a big hat that was bright blue on one side and flaming red on the other.  When he went down the road the people on one side saw a god in a red hat, while those on  the other saw a god in a blue hat. Everyone shouted, "We saw God!" But they were divided about God's color, and argued and argued, until the God turned and went the other way.  Both sides fervently apologized to one another, perplexed. Then,  the god turned around and then turned both ways, showing everyone its dual nature and everyone burst out laughing.

Neither story was entirely true, without seeing it from one and then the "other" perspective!

Laughter is a wonderful way to kill the Buddha.


  1. I go to meetings as a reminder that I am not alone in this and that I'm not unique. I also have friends in recovery that I would miss. Unity, service and recovery are the prime reasons for me.

    1. Syd, thanks for sharing that. I too benefit from meetings, and it could very well turn out to be a lifelong thing. In EA, my first Sponsor would say, "Don't stop before the miracle!"

      I am not planning on stopping anytime soon, when it comes to my 12-step recovery. But I like to keep myself honest and be sure I am not doing program from fear.

      Love questioning, together......

      <3 Smitty


I welcome your thoughts. Keep me honest~