PP 25-26 There is a Solution (Spiritual Awakening)

The book Alcoholics Anonymous, aka The Big Book, is the basic text for the AA program of sobriety. "Alcoholics Anonymous" Copyright 2012 AAWS, Inc. All Rights, Reserved. Short excerpts used by permission of AAWS
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Karl R
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PP 25-26 There is a Solution (Spiritual Awakening)

Post by Karl R » Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:24 am

Good Morning,

Have posted today's below. Thanks all for your continued sharing.

This reading starts with a promise-there is a solution to the drink problem (and the other problems of which the drink problem is but a symptom). The catch is that we need to pick up the spiritual tool kit that the BB and the program provide. We all seem to have agreed that "not drinking" is not enough. We must work the actual step program to have a true spiritual awakening.

Anyone care to share on the benefits or purpose of the "spiritual awakening" as opposed to "just not drinking"? And...how do we get it?

cheers,
Karl


There is a solution. Almost none of us liked the self-searching, the leveling of our pride, the confession of shortcomings which the process requires for its successful consummation. But we saw that it really worked in others, and we had come to believe in the hopelessness and futility of life as we had been living it. When, therefore, we were approached by those in whom the problem had been solved, there was nothing left for us but to pick up the simple kit of spiritual tools laid at our feet. We have found much of heaven and we have been rocketed into a fourth dimension of existence of which we had not even dreamed.

The great fact is just this, and nothing less: That we have had deep and effective spiritual experiences which have revolutionized our whole attitude toward life, toward our fellows and toward God's universe. The central fact of our lives today is the absolute certainty that our Creator has entered into our hearts and lives in a way which is indeed miraculous. He has commenced to accomplish those things for us which we could never do by ourselves.

If you are as seriously alcoholic as we were, we believe there is no middle-of-the-road solution. We were in a position where life was becoming impossible, and if we had passed into the region from which there is no return through human aid, we had but two alternatives: One was to go on to the bitter end, blotting out the consciousness of our intolerable situation as best we could; and the other, to accept spiritual help. This we did because we honestly wanted to, and were willing to make the effort.
Last edited by Karl R on Fri Sep 11, 2009 6:17 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: September 16, 2008 BB There is a solution pp 25-26

Post by Blue Moon » Tue Sep 16, 2008 6:33 am

Karl R wrote: Anyone care to share on the benefits or purpose of the "spiritual awakening" as opposed to "just not drinking"? And...how do we get it?
For an alcoholic "of our type", a spiritual awakening followed by maintaining a fit spiritual condition is the only way we found to just don't drink that lasts more than a few weeks or months.

Drinking "alcoholically" is a symptom of untreated alcoholism. Therefore sobriety is a symptom of recovery from alcoholism.

Many say "there's nothing worse than a bellyful of booze and a headful of AA". I can think of one thing that's much worse for me: a belly empty of booze, and a head with nothing to replace it with.
Ian S
AKA Blue Moon

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Post by bowlerdawg » Tue Sep 16, 2008 7:04 am

it is a spiritual program, and imo you can not gain the full benefit unless you have a power greater than yourself.

being a " dry drunk " is no fun i am still hollow, self seeking, in denial, dis honest & overall just a miserable son of a bisquit eater.

when i allow God to run my life those things are kept at bay one day at a time, and..............life really is much better

also for me ,early in sobriety, the realtionship i have with my HP makes drastic changes in my life i.e. things i could not do for myself.

how i got it ?
complete surender , and i asked God for his help, and i keep asking him every day


ty for letting me share
First of all we had to quit playing God, it didn't work

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Post by avaneesh912 » Tue Sep 16, 2008 12:30 pm

To me after reading the appendices II, i have had spiritual awakening every step.

To admit that i am powerless over alcohol and that my life as become unmanageable was a big shift in attitude.

Then to believe that a Power greater than myself could restore me to sanity is another leap.

Then decide to turn my will and life over to the care of God as we understood God is another awakening.

To search and create a fearless moral inventory of myself was a big step.

And then to admit to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs was the greatest change ever.

And to be entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character and Humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings is another.

And to Make a list of all persons I had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all and making direct amends to such people wherever possible is another.

Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it (this is a daily SA).

Praying and Meditating is something new to me

Finally to carry the message and practice the principles in all my affairs is another.
Show him the mental twist which leads to the first drink of a spree. We suggest you do this as we have done it in the chapter on alcoholism.(Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

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Post by ann2 » Tue Sep 16, 2008 12:44 pm

It was just that kind of spiritual awakening that Dr. Carl Jung was attempting to inspire in Roland H. When the therapy didn't succeed, Dr. Jung recommended that Roland place himself in a position where such an awakening might occur. Roland joined the Oxford groups and by following their principles of surrender, self-examination and helping others he indeed achieved the experience that helped him stay sober.

I put myself in an A.A. group. Gave myself up to a higher power. I was relieved of my craving and obsession. But it wasn't until I too followed *all* the principles of A.A., the ones in the steps after step 3, that I found serenity and a sense of purpose. Those steps led to my having a spiritual experience which changed me fundamentally.

And I did it using the Big Book and you people here online, and going to every meeting possible even though they were in Swedish and I had no clue what those people were saying 99% of the time :)

Thank you all, and please keep me at it.

Ann (ann2)
"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada

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Post by Oliver » Tue Sep 16, 2008 2:27 pm

For some reason when I arrived I had the idea that I would need a spiritual awakening to start on the steps. Pretty crazy given Step 12 actually says "Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps". The key to the door was willingness - absolute willingness to take the steps (all of them, and not number 13!), and particularly Step 3 in all my affairs. Invariably, as the 12x12 says, self-will has a tendency to slam the door shut, but the key of willingness can always be picked up.
Oliver
"In exchange for bottle and hangover, I have been given the keys to the kingdom."

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Re: September 16, 2008 BB There is a solution pp 25-26

Post by martin08 » Tue Sep 16, 2008 4:22 pm

Blue Moon wrote:
Many say "there's nothing worse than a bellyful of booze and a headful of AA". I can think of one thing that's much worse for me: a belly empty of booze, and a head with nothing to replace it with.
Nail on the head.

Alcohol was my solution, and when it was merely removed, I became even more angry and harmful than when I was drinking. I actually threatened another person's life.

Sound crazy? Be honest and see if life is really better 'dry'. If not, a real Solution that worked for me was infinitely more powerful than my old solution and my anger combined - the Spiritual Experience of the 12 Steps.

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Post by jujub » Tue Oct 28, 2008 11:25 am

afternoon all,

as it says, the spiritual awakening is the result of the 12 steps of aa. i'm not close to having worked all of these steps, but in my short time being back in recovery i've had glimpses of that awakening. brief moments of pure gratitude and a willingness to accept my remedial conception of a power greater than myself working in my life. a god that is interested in my little existence. a god that i can see just by looking at my backyard or the sky. a god that has placed circumstances and people in my path that have showed me how to want to be sober again. a moment of clarity i've been offered before but have chosen to turn my back on.

that just not drinking stuff is an awful place to be. if that is all there was, i'd return to my natural solution in a heartbeat. and i have in fact done that many times. untreated alcoholism--drunk or sober--is not a pretty sight. i bounce between the highs and lows of very early recovery (sometimes minute to minute), but the constant so far has been the desire to be sober is greater than the desire to drink today. that is a miracle for me. i was convinced it would never again be possible. wrong again!!!

i love the paragraph about no middle of the road solution. for me it makes clear where freedom can be found. it isn't found in a bottle and it isn't found running away from working the steps.

judi, alcoholic

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Post by Karl R » Fri Sep 11, 2009 6:24 am

There is a solution. Almost none of us liked the self-searching, the leveling of our pride, the confession of shortcomings which the process requires for its successful consummation.
Interesting word "process". And another interesting word "consummation".
So the process has a consummation and that is a sobriety as a result of a spiritual awakening.

And....the process requires self-searching, leveling of pride, and confession of shortcomings.

Maybe one of the top 100 sentences in the Big Book.

have a great day everyone,
Karl

samantha

Post by samantha » Fri Sep 11, 2009 11:08 am

Looked up the meaning of these words:

Consummation:
1. The act of consummating; a fulfillment.
2. An ultimate goal or end.

Process:
1. A series of actions, changes, or functions bringing about a result: the process of digestion; the process of obtaining a driver's license.

So, the solution involves a series of actions, changes or functions required for its successful fulfillment or end - the spiritual awakening.

And then it is necessary to do the work each day to maintain that spiritual awakening?

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Post by ann2 » Fri Sep 11, 2009 11:15 am

Is it necessary to do the work each day? You can experiment yourself. For me the answer is yes -- the work becomes its own reward, actually.

Maintaining a spiritual awakening -- I'm not sure that can be done, at least by me. I can do the work that leads to a spiritual awakening, and I can continue to grow in the paths that the spiritual awakening helps me to find. But staying in one place, that isn't the outcome of spirituality for me.

Remembering it -- where I came from, and what has happened afterward -- that is important to me. The fact that it happened. To me. I was there. It was utterly unexpected and yet felt completely right. But I couldn't stay there. Doesn't mean it's not still a part of me.

Ann
"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada

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Post by leejosepho » Fri Sep 11, 2009 2:32 pm

samantha wrote:So, the solution involves a series of actions, changes or functions required for its successful fulfillment or end - the spiritual awakening.
Yes, that is my own experience:

"... we will never get over drinking until we have done our utmost to straighten out the past."
"To get over drinking will require a transformation of thought and attitude."
("A.A.", the book, pages 77 and 143)

By taking Steps Four thru Nine, we are made aware of what is spiritually right or wrong, good or bad ... and we are ultimately "awakened" to the rightness, goodness and blessing of living as our Creator would have us. Or in different words:

"We were reborn." (page 63)
samantha wrote:And then it is necessary to do the work each day to maintain that spiritual awakening?
In my own experience, Step Ten "maintains" my street-cleaning done in Steps Four thru Nine, then Step Eleven makes Step Ten less necessary just like Step Ten can make Steps Four thru Nine (cleaning up another past) less necessary ... then Step Twelve is simply about continuing to live in our spiritually-reconciled and -transformed state.

Pretty simple, eh?!

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Re: PP 25-26 There is a Solution (Spiritual Awakening)

Post by leejosepho » Fri Mar 23, 2012 6:36 am

"... beyond human aid, and unless locked up, may die or go permanently insane ..."
There is a solution ... the self-searching, the leveling of our pride, the confession of shortcomings which the process requires for its successful consummation.
=======
Process:
1. A series of actions, changes, or functions bringing about a result

Consummation:
1. The act of consummating; a fulfillment.
2. An ultimate goal or end.
=======

"Many of us exclaimed, 'What an order! I can't go through with it.' Do not be discouraged. No one among us has been able to maintain anything like perfect adherence to these principles. We are not saints. The point is, that we are willing to grow along spiritual lines. The principles we have set down are guides to progress. We claim spiritual progress rather than spiritual perfection." (page 59)
But we saw that it really worked in others, and we had come to believe in the hopelessness and futility of life as we had been living it ...
"Leaving aside the drink question, they tell why living was so unsatisfactory. They show how the change came over them." (page 51)
... The central fact of our lives today is the absolute certainty that our Creator has entered into our hearts and lives in a way which is indeed miraculous. He has commenced to accomplish those things for us which we could never do by ourselves.
We are now well into our book's chapter entitled "There Is A Solution", and nothing had been said about not drinking. Rather, we are headed toward a certain kind of "soul surgery" where the problem is to be removed altogether:

"... [and] without any thought or effort on our part. It just comes! That is the miracle of it. We are not fighting it, neither are we avoiding temptation. We feel as though we had been placed in a position of neutrality - safe and protected. We have not even sworn off. Instead, the problem has been removed. It does not exist for us. We are neither cocky nor are we afraid. That is our experience. That is how we react so long as we keep in fit spiritual condition." (page 85)
If you are as seriously alcoholic as we were, we believe there is no middle-of-the-road solution. We were in a position where life was becoming impossible, and if we had passed into the region from which there is no return through human aid, we had but two alternatives: One was to go on to the bitter end, blotting out the consciousness of our intolerable situation as best we could; and the other, to accept spiritual help. This we did because we honestly wanted to, and were willing to make the effort.
At Step One, I accepted and admitted the facts of my powerlessness and non-manageability and I stopped trying to stop drinking ... and now here at Step Two, we seriously consider the evidence of recovery present in others like ourselves.
=======================
"We A.A.s do not *stay* away from drinking [one day at a
time] -- we *grow* away from drinking [one day at a time]."
("Lois Remembers", page 168, quoting Bill, emphasis added)
=======================

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Re: PP 25-26 There is a Solution (Spiritual Awakening)

Post by Tommy-S » Fri Mar 23, 2012 2:43 pm

Delete
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Re: PP 25-26 There is a Solution (Spiritual Awakening)

Post by leejosepho » Fri Mar 23, 2012 3:37 pm

Tommy_S wrote:
We are now well into our book's chapter entitled "There Is A Solution", and nothing had been said about not drinking.
???

I am not sure what you are getting at here, Joe.
Nothing in our book ever says "Don't drink." Rather:

"We are assuming, of course, that the reader desires to stop ..." (page 34), and then we are told how the problem can be removed.
=======================
"We A.A.s do not *stay* away from drinking [one day at a
time] -- we *grow* away from drinking [one day at a time]."
("Lois Remembers", page 168, quoting Bill, emphasis added)
=======================

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