Rigorous Honesty

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Rigorous Honesty

Postby anand » Tue Jan 09, 2018 7:58 pm

Anyone else practiced RIGOROUS Honesty and found it was worth it? So hard sometimes. Here's a current example: My Father has often roped me into financial schemes in which he manages to make money at my expense. But one such time, I had a chance to get some of the money back. He is demanding that $$ now, which returning it would be a pretty big hit to me financially and psychology.

BUT HERE'S THE DEAL: Even though, I am "justified" in keeping his money - it is in fact His "technically." All is fair in business (which means nothing is fair in business btw). And we have expectations of our parents not to choose money over us - but even that notion is a bit selfish of me, it is after all a self-induced thought that paints me as a victim. My wanting to hold on to this $ out of resentment/revenge is Selfish. Dishonest, Fearful (of economic insecurity and of saving face for my own personal insecurity), and Inconsiderate - I am also a bit embarrassed that after all these years of AA practice I still care about stuff like this. What happened to Let Go and Let God? Out the window when money and family are concerned I suppose.

Anyway - I am forcing myself to give him the $ and to possibly endure the economic insecurity that might ensue (and also endure the blow to my ego for letting him get $ that he conned me out of in the first place over the years). WHY? Because I am an Alcoholic and we live by the principles. I don't have the freedom to behave on my character defects, no matter how my mind is able to justify them as right.

THE CATCH: Rigorous Honesty keeps me sober, but it is not a life without its consequences. Sometimes we have to choose between money, security, and other perks of "dishonest" life at the expense of our sobriety/maintaining recovery. While I never want to be the person my character defects turn me into, the moral high ground is a scary place to be. Peace of mind doesn't pay the bills ;) ;). Or does it??

12x12 quote reminder thxs to PaigeB:

It is a spiritual axiom that every time we are disturbed, no matter what the cause, there is something wrong with us. If somebody hurts us and we are sore, we are in the wrong also. But are there no exceptions to this rule? What about “justifiable” anger? If somebody cheats us, aren’t we entitled to be mad? Can’t we be properly angry with self-righteous folk? For us of A.A. these are dangerous exceptions. We have found that justified anger ought to be left to those better qualified to handle it.
Hi, I'm Anand and I'm an Alcoholic. And have been since 7/14/2003. Thank you for being here.
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Re: Rigorous Honesty

Postby avaneesh912 » Wed Jan 10, 2018 6:08 am

We can always negotiate a deal with the creditors like the book says. In this case, go to your father and work out a deal to pay back on installments. Hopefully your father will take it. Mark Houston talks about making amends with IRS, he worked with them and paid the money over several years.
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: Rigorous Honesty

Postby Brock » Wed Jan 10, 2018 4:49 pm

Thanks for the topic anand.

I don’t want to encourage justifying something anyone feels it would be better for them to do, but returning money which it seems was never really his in the first place, and the possibility of the family feeling the pinch as a result, I would look at this line on page 86 of the 12 & 12 - “Are we going to be so rigidly righteous about making amends that we don't care what happens to the family and home? Or do we first consult those who are to be gravely affected?”

For me this rigorous honesty business applies when I really feel bad about doing something dishonest, over my sober years the list of these things has grown, my wife is sometimes shocked and so are some others. Over Christmas in the rush I got an item from the grocery which was not on my bill, said I had to go back, of course wife reminds me of the many times I have found where they cheated me, the Christmas traffic I would have to face and so on, but I knew what had to be done, the lady in the store was in shock, normal people don’t do that she said, well I guess AA’s aren’t normal. The point for me is I didn’t pay for it, and I would loose serenity maybe even sleep if I didn’t go back, so the test is will I loose peace of mind, if not I do nothing.

We discussed the saying ‘To thine own self be true’ the other day, and things like acting differently in different situations, or in front of certain people, came out as not being true to yourself. Like in the book - “More than most people, the alcoholic leads a double life. He is very much the actor. To the outer world he presents his stage character. This is the one he likes his fellows to see. He wants to enjoy a certain reputation, but knows in his heart he doesn't deserve it.” When I do that I am not being honest either, there are many areas other than money or material things I believe we can be dishonest about.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: Rigorous Honesty

Postby D'oh » Wed Jan 10, 2018 5:14 pm

When I first Re Sobered, I was back at work and was going home for lunch. There was a lot of activity at the Dealership, but no Customers waiting.

I walked to my truck and found a $5 er on the ground, I picked it up and noticed a $20, then a $50. I clued in on lunch. We have Retired drivers, bring vehicles down from our sister Dealership. They get $75/ trip and 3 of them had ust come down.

By the time I got back they had left. I called our sister Dealership to have them ask if anyone had lost their pay. The next day, a different driver (member) came down. I gave him the $75 to bring to the driver that lost it the day before.

The driver that lost it, had an aneurism that day and passed. His Daughter was handed the $75 at the Visitation, and was somewhat cheered up, they had lunch on Dad.

The feeling was priceless for doing the right thing.
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Re: Rigorous Honesty

Postby positrac » Thu Jan 11, 2018 5:35 am

Interesting topic and one I will say is maybe less of rigorous honesty and more about ethics and just doing the right thing even in the path of loss and self respect. I need money and I'd rather be mad a me for losing it than at someone else who exploited me and my generosity.
Work hard, stay positive, and get up early. It's the best part of the day.
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Re: Rigorous Honesty

Postby D'oh » Thu Jan 11, 2018 6:19 am

We, have to live with our actions. Nobody else,
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Re: Rigorous Honesty

Postby Tosh » Tue Jan 16, 2018 7:45 am

anand wrote:Anyone else practiced RIGOROUS Honesty and found it was worth it?

I've practised it, stupidly, and it's bitten me on the arse on a couple of occasions.

I think the problem was how I did it, rather than with the principle itself.

And I also think the key word is 'developing' (developing a manner of living which demands rigorous honesty.)

To me the word 'developing' sounds like a process, maybe one which will take a life-time and never get perfected.

I'm meant to be seeking spiritual progress, not perfection.
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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