Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

The 12 Steps are the AA program of recovery from alcoholism.

Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby Zara » Sat Aug 16, 2014 6:54 pm

I am in the process of re-working Step 2 and one of the questions I want to ask is how do YOU sense spiritual guidance? In the past, I often avoided actually asking for spiritual guidance in certain important situations like employment. Why? Out of fear I guess....fear that God's will wouldn't be the same as MY will. Sounds weird maybe, but that is one reason I am re-working the steps, and re-meeting my Higher Power after all these years. I guess I never REALLY trusted the concept of the Higher Power that I had. So, now I am trying to be real and honest in my search. But I guess a part of me worries...what if I am given guidance and miss it?

So, how do YOU know when your Higher Power is "nudging you"?
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby Layne » Sat Aug 16, 2014 8:24 pm

When I am serene, I figure I am on the right path. When I start to get a little restless, I figure that I am being nudged. This is not to be confused with batsh*t crazy, which is all me and not my higher power. This is where I really need "the wisdom to know the difference".
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby Peter.H. » Sat Aug 16, 2014 10:32 pm

I see my 'conscience', the voice that always tells me the truth in just a few words, as God's-will for me.
"...unless this person can experience an entire psyche change there is very little hope of his recovery" - Dr. Silkworth. [Alcoholics Anonymous, 4th Ed, p xxix.]
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby avaneesh912 » Sun Aug 17, 2014 5:29 am

guess I never REALLY trusted the concept of the Higher Power that I had. So, now I am trying to be real and honest in my search. But I guess a part of me worries...what if I am given guidance and miss it?


You don't start with trust, I was told to have some belief, even a little bit is enough. And then we work the steps, see the obsession get lifted and then we begin to trust this power. And then you start working with others to keep the torch burning. Believe me things will happen to confirm that you are in the right path. For me, I give away cds so I constantly burn cds and one afternoon, my wife, was not in good spirit and questioned the need/use of it. The same evening, I receive a call from a friend in AA, who had just heard a speaker mention my name and how my CD jump started his recovery. Couple of years ago then, I saw this young man, share, I could see the pain in his share after the meeting, i had given him Mark Hs' talk on 10 and 11. Today both are in much better situated. I am saying this just to illustrate how the power of this program works, nothing else.

All you need is little bit of hope that it could work for you too, thats what Bill W did, seeing his friend Ebby. I am told, Bill always told, if his drinking ever gets as bad as Ebbys he would quit. But there he was, 2 months sober and Bill was aghast. Ebby was sober.
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)
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby Lastuni » Mon Aug 18, 2014 8:09 am

Zara wrote: I guess I never REALLY trusted the concept of the Higher Power that I had. So, now I am trying to be real and honest in my search. But I guess a part of me worries...what if I am given guidance and miss it?

So, how do YOU know when your Higher Power is "nudging you"?



All I can offer is my own experience -- I fought the concept of giving myself fully to a higher power for years. It was only recently that I finally submitted and took the step. Since doing so, I look back and since they say "hindsight is 20/20" I see just how many "nudgings" my higher power gave me (and still gives me!). I always knew my higher power, and I prayed to her and asked her for guidance and wisdom so many times over the years. But I hadn't realized she was the driving force I needed to submit myself to specifically for my sobriety. She showed me so many things along the way, but I equated them with other factors in my life. When I realized that I wasn't devoting myself to her in the one area I perhaps needed her most in -- attaining and maintaining sobriety -- well, that was the moment when I gave all of myself to her. Not just the parts of me and my life that I picked and chose from. All of me. And my powerlessness over alcohol. I gave all of myself to my Triple Goddess, as she is the higher power for me, and when I finally gave her literally all of me, I sobbed like a child -- I just felt so relieved. It was as though she was there always but had been waiting for me to give myself fully.

I hope my experience is of at least some help to you.

My best advice is to pay attention to the little things. Your higher power is there, but might be sort of flying under your radar if you aren't truly paying attention. Pray as well. Even if to no one specific. you can pray and ask that your higher power come to you and that only those with genuine love and good intention reach out to you. Imagine a ball of white light starting from within you and expanding to protect your entire body. This will always keep you safe, no matter what religion or who your higher power. The white shield of protection will keep you safe. This is not medical or religious advice. It is only my personal experience and my desire to help you connect with your HP, if I can even help at all. Maybe try a journal as well, just writing whatever comes into your mind without thinking about it -- just write as it comes. Some people have a lot of success in doing that.

Keep posting and pm me any time if you'd like.
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby ChrisHoney » Mon Jan 11, 2016 6:06 am

avanneesh912 wrote:
guess I never REALLY trusted the concept of the Higher Power that I had. So, now I am trying to be real and honest in my search. But I guess a part of me worries...what if I am given guidance and miss it?


You don't start with trust, I was told to have some belief, even a little bit is enough. And then we work the steps, see the obsession get lifted and then we begin to trust this power. And then you start working with others to keep the torch burning. Believe me things will happen to confirm that you are in the right path. For me, I give away cds so I constantly burn cds and one afternoon, my wife loves reading about the 3 week diet here (link removed per forum guidelines) and I was not in good spirit and questioned the need/use of it. The same evening, I receive a call from a friend in AA, who had just heard a speaker mention my name and how my CD jump started his recovery. Couple of years ago then, I saw this young man, share, I could see the pain in his share after the meeting, i had given him Mark Hs' talk on 10 and 11. Today both are in much better situated. I am saying this just to illustrate how the power of this program works, nothing else.

All you need is little bit of hope that it could work for you too, thats what Bill W did, seeing his friend Ebby. I am told, Bill always told, if his drinking ever gets as bad as Ebbys he would quit. But there he was, 2 months sober and Bill was aghast. Ebby was sober.


I like to meditate and do yoga for spiritual guidance. When I say meditate I mean lie on my bed listening to guided meditation tapes that relax you and help clear your thoughts. It leaves me feeling better and more refreshed. Anyone else do this?
Last edited by ChrisHoney on Mon May 16, 2016 11:30 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby avaneesh912 » Mon Jan 11, 2016 7:07 am

I don't lie in the bed. Most spiritual masters requests us to have the spine straight when meditating. I cant squat or be in any yogic poistion out there. I simply sit on a comfortable chair. I search for 15 meditation music and pick one at random on Youtube. Usually Google doesn't play ads in the middle so I am good if I pick those short ones. Larger videos different story, I need my iphone to track the time and also put up with ads in between.
Last edited by avaneesh912 on Mon Jan 11, 2016 11:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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)
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby Spirit Flower » Mon Jan 11, 2016 11:12 am

Silent and sitting on a chair.
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby PaigeB » Mon Jan 11, 2016 12:35 pm

If I lay in bed I fall asleep, but sometimes that is the only place I get any real quiet. It still works. Anything is better than what I was doing before, which is none!

Congrats on starting - that is usually the hardest part! If you miss a day or 2, just get back to it as soon as you can!
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby clouds » Mon Jan 11, 2016 1:07 pm

Zara wrote:I am in the process of re-working Step 2 and one of the questions I want to ask is how do YOU sense spiritual guidance? In the past, I often avoided actually asking for spiritual guidance in certain important situations like employment. Why? Out of fear I guess....fear that God's will wouldn't be the same as MY will. Sounds weird maybe, but that is one reason I am re-working the steps, and re-meeting my Higher Power after all these years. I guess I never REALLY trusted the concept of the Higher Power that I had. So, now I am trying to be real and honest in my search. But I guess a part of me worries...what if I am given guidance and miss it?

So, how do YOU know when your Higher Power is "nudging you"?


Hi Zara, I see you are asking about Step 2 and Step 3 and about how to discern what God's will is for you!
Many of us try to keep it simple and do the next right thing.
If there are no spiritual certainties even though I have put the question about employment, as you mentioned, in the hands of God, then I do whatever work is right in front of me, do the sensible thing and leave the results to God.

Your will might be the same as the will of God as you mentioned, sometimes it could be. Step 3 says "take away all my difficulties" and in Step 11 we read that we can ask God to give us whatever we need to take care of our problems.
I think we try to the best of our ability to do God's will. I place a great deal of weight on the WILLINGNESS to do God's will.
So my part is to be willing, then carry on with my day, listen to my conscience, not do stuff I know is bad, and wait for direction. If nothing certain comes to me or I cant discern it, I do the work that is right in front of me and leave the results to God.

My take on it is that we can't miss spiritual guidance from God as long as we are willing and doing our best to be honest with ourselves. If God is either everything or nothing, and you chose everything, are actively doing the steps then there wouldn't be any mistakes from here on out. I dont mean things will always be how you want them. I find things will be what God wills and usually at some point I am able to see why that when I had turned things over to God they were actually the best it could be. Sometimes it takes 20 or so years to see it, but who cares, better late than never.

Its good you are trying to discern what the spiritual terms in the book mean to you. My suggestions may not appeal, your own path will be the best one. Your effort to seek and do God's will is evident, with that kind of willingness you are making great progress.
" Burn the idea into the consciousness of every man that he can get well regardless of anyone. The only condition is that he trust in God and clean house." page 98 A.A.
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby Tosh » Mon Jan 11, 2016 2:37 pm

I don't 'work' Step 2; the word 'came' indicates it's a kind of process that just happens. It's a bit like our defects at Steps 6 and 7; that's God's stuff and nothing to do with me (apart from becoming willing and asking).

I think trying to 'work' on stuff that's out of our control is a bit like 'working on removing our obsession to drink to be removed'; we don't work on that directly, we just take the actions described in the Big Book, honestly, openly and willingly and the obsession will 'be removed'.

Personally, I don't think God really cares what I do for a living as long as it doesn't harm anyone; I don't think God is interested in careers, money, or material wealth. I reckon God's just happy that I'm getting my arse out to work on time, paying the bills, so that I can carry out my primary purpose and take care of my family.
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)
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby Spirit Flower » Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:18 pm

When I "worked" step 2 the first time, my sponsor said to figure out what was my will and what was God's will. And what was my insanity. These things were worked on for a coupla weeks.

I did not try to sense "guidance" at that stage of the game.
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby D'oh » Mon Jan 11, 2016 6:09 pm

I always believed that the Group was a Power greater than myself and they could restore my life to Sanity. If I followed what they taught.

Then came Step 3. and I couldn't conceive "How to turn my will and life over to them."

Then I was a week into Detox, on a Pity Trip, because I was 2 months sober and only trying for court reasons to show that I was wanting to change my ways. While there my Grandmother passed away, so I grabbed a bus for the 2 hour ride home, thinking of life and why I was so down. I got home to find a house full of Drunks, including my Uncle who sobered up shortly before me. A life changing moment. I looked at the clock and there was 20 minutes to get to a meeting, which I did. I didn't drink and left Monday to finish my time in Detox. Watching people come in, dry out, and come back 2 days later for more of the same. They all seemed surprised to see me back, and still sober.

So I sat around all day doing what I was told, listening to the helplessness of Alcoholism during the day and every night I went out to the local meetings. Smoke filled, dimly lit. 1 Night a man named Joe, in his talk said "Everybody here happy content faces, is not them. They are just screwed up Alcoholics, it is God working through them."

I finally had the proof I needed to believe there was a God, and more importantly, he could do the same for me. if I let him. After that I could see that the proof had been around me all along, I was just too self centered to see it.
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby Tosh » Tue Jan 12, 2016 5:36 am

D'oh wrote:I finally had the proof I needed to believe there was a God, and more importantly, he could do the same for me. if I let him. After that I could see that the proof had been around me all along, I was just too self centered to see it.


Interesting; you reduced your self centredness and found proof of God (well done, but proof of God leaves very little room for faith in God), whilst at the same time you've inferred that atheists are too self-centred to believe.

I like your style. :lol:
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)
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Re: Step 2 Spiritual Guidance

Postby clouds » Tue Jan 12, 2016 5:48 am

Tosh wrote:
D'oh wrote:I finally had the proof I needed to believe there was a God, and more importantly, he could do the same for me. if I let him. After that I could see that the proof had been around me all along, I was just too self centered to see it.


Interesting; you reduced your self centredness and found proof of God (well done, but proof of God leaves very little room for faith in God), whilst at the same time you've inferred that atheists are too self-centred to believe.

I like your style. :lol:


Not sure thats what D'oh implied.

I think he said HE was too selfcentered to believe in God, not that all aetheists are self centered.
" Burn the idea into the consciousness of every man that he can get well regardless of anyone. The only condition is that he trust in God and clean house." page 98 A.A.
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