Question

New to AA? Got questions? Here's the place to ask. Note that no one person speaks "officially" for AA. AA meetings in your local area are always the best source of information. Note that anyone may post and reply to messages in this forum.

Question

Postby ThelonleyMango » Fri Dec 15, 2017 8:38 am

Why do people say you can't graft new idea's on a closed mind?
ThelonleyMango
Forums Enthusiast
 
Posts: 28
Joined: Tue Oct 03, 2017 6:34 pm

Re: Question

Postby avaneesh912 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 8:56 am

If already have a pre conceived idea, i am assuming thats what we mean by "closed mind" here, we cant see the truth, the decisions will be made on wrong assumptions, wrong understanding. Many in the fellowship think alcoholism is about losing control after we take that first drink. So if we talk about the mental part of the disease and the spiritual malady that goes with it, we will be going back and forth for the next five pages.
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)
User avatar
avaneesh912
Trusted Servant
 
Posts: 4685
Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 12:22 pm
Location: Atlanta, GA

Re: Question

Postby ThelonleyMango » Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:13 am

I understood your first sentence.. but I didn't really fully grasp what you're saying.
ThelonleyMango
Forums Enthusiast
 
Posts: 28
Joined: Tue Oct 03, 2017 6:34 pm

Re: Question

Postby avaneesh912 » Fri Dec 15, 2017 9:52 am

I can only use examples to illustrate this:

This is from book A New Earth:

The one million people that mad dictator Pol Pot of Cambodia ordered killed included everybody who wore glasses. Why? To him, the Marxist interpretation of history was the absolute truth, and according to his version of it, those who wore glasses belonged to the educated glass, the bourgeoisie, the exploiters of the peasants. They needed to be eliminated to make room for a new social order. His truth also was a bundle of thoughts.

*****
Wrong understanding Wrong decisions.
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)
User avatar
avaneesh912
Trusted Servant
 
Posts: 4685
Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 12:22 pm
Location: Atlanta, GA

Re: Question

Postby Layne » Fri Dec 15, 2017 10:00 am

In order to fully enjoy a walnut, you have to crack the shell.
Layne
Forums Old Timer
 
Posts: 1527
Joined: Sun Oct 29, 2006 7:20 am
Location: British Virgin Islands

Re: Question

Postby Brock » Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:29 pm

A few pages before the end, the big book has a section titled ‘Spiritual Experience,’ just a couple pages which end with this quote -
There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which can not fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance-that principle is contempt prior to investigation.
--HERBERT SPENCER

They use that I think to demonstrate something like what you are talking about, if someone has a closed mind then he has contempt prior to investigation, (he thinks it’s a load of crap before reading about it). In the spiritual example, if he has decided that there is no God, his mind is closed so you can’t ‘graft’ a new idea, the idea of God. If his mind is open even a little, he might change his mind.

Good question Mango, you add a lot to these forums and keep us thinking.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
User avatar
Brock
Forums Coordinator
 
Posts: 3253
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:45 pm

Re: Question

Postby PaigeB » Fri Dec 15, 2017 12:55 pm

If his mind is open even a little, he might change his mind.

I like to say that a completely dark room can be vanquished by a crack in the door. But I like the walnut analogy too!

It is my experience that one just has to be willing to be willing. We cannot judge another person's mind though... I assume that somewhere inside there they are a bit willing. People don't usually stumble into AA because they have nothing to do on a Friday night. I try to drive home the hopelessness of the disease & offer a bottle of bleach and a rocks glass. Then tell them about my experience and show them the Big Book.

Page 25 of the BB gives the choice to suffer on to the bitter end, blotting out our intolerable situation or accept spiritual help. I tell them, with a laugh, that only an alcoholic has any hesitation about making this decision.

Page 30 has PAIN: pitiful and incomprehensible demoralization. AND what we need to do to get the 1st Step started: Fully concede to our inner-most selves that we were alcoholic.

I have a disease ~ plain and simple. Everyday I ask, "How do I want to treat it?"
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
The e-AA Group's 7th Tradition link: www.e-aa.org/group_seventh.php
User avatar
PaigeB
Trusted Servant
 
Posts: 10456
Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:28 pm
Location: Iowa USA

Re: Question

Postby marthamaree » Fri Dec 15, 2017 3:18 pm

Hi lonelymango, this is an interesting discussion. My fave book on the subject of closed mind or challenging a persons dominant paradigm is Les Mis by Victor Hugo. It highlights how far we are willing to go to protect our beliefs and how initially devastating a challenge can be to them. In order to move forward and have peace it is important to be able to "change our mind" and not beat up on our selves for past beliefs. Doing better when I know better. Not drinking, not drinking, happy to be not drinking. c
marthamaree
Forums Enthusiast
 
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat Oct 21, 2017 2:18 pm

Re: Question

Postby Tosh » Sat Dec 16, 2017 12:40 pm

ThelonleyMango wrote:Why do people say you can't graft new idea's on a closed mind?


I wouldn't pay to much attention to these kinds of 'soundbites of wisdom'. No-one needs to graft anything onto anyone.

What opened my mind was suffering; when I'd suffered enough I became willing - open enough - to take some different actions from my then usual, and it was these actions that I took that gave me new concepts (of myself, others and of life itself even).

Luckily enough we have a program of action, the 12 Steps, and I was lucky that I suffered enough which opened my mind to trying it.
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)
User avatar
Tosh
Forums Old Timer
 
Posts: 3669
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 10:43 am

Re: Question

Postby Tosh » Sat Dec 16, 2017 12:48 pm

Just to add, I remember a particularly angry man telling me that I 'couldn't fix a broken brain with a broken brain'.

And I remember taking offence that he was inferring that I was 'broken brained'. Okay, okay, I was 'broken brained', and I still am to some extent (none of us are perfect), but the idiot telling me was obviously broken brained too.

There's a way to be helpful and there's ways to be offensive; some of these one-liners are just daft, often spouted by someone who isn't smart enough to use their own experience to help, so just regurgitate what they think passes for wisdom.
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)
User avatar
Tosh
Forums Old Timer
 
Posts: 3669
Joined: Fri May 13, 2011 10:43 am


Return to For the Newcomer

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests