- The Dance of Sobriety

The Dance of Sobriety




Discussions related to 12 Step Recovery and Treatment

The Dance of Sobriety

Postby ccs » Fri Jun 19, 2009 10:51 pm

there is a second page of this (for those of you who hav`nt seen it before) if ya`ll want to see it let me know and I`ll post it its longer than this one
but its just as deep and inspiring ( like Dallas & Paul :wink: )




As a sober person in the "Dance Of Life" in sobriety, it is only when we do this dance of the Twelve Steps that we are our true self. We who were formerly powerless over alcohol and life have been given a power through the grace of the Higher Power and diligent effort at the practice of the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

That power takes over a sober person's life. It affects everything about them. Knowledge and understanding increase faster. Before long their relationship with the Higher Power, and to power itself, is different from that of ordinary people, always presenting opportunities to set the power in motion. They become able to show others the fullness of that power in motion. Without that motion, the action of living the Twelve Steps in all their affairs, they know the power is for naught, nil.

But these people, having thoroughly applied the steps to their lives, have spiritually cleansed themselves, and they are very different from ordinary people. They may, for the most part, behave and look like everyone else, but they are not. The way they think is different. What happens to them is different. They have insights that other people do not have. And, it is these thoughts and insights that enable them to reach into others in the process of 12th Step work, and bring healing to them.

Another thing they know is who they are. They have forgiven and accepted forgiveness for themselves. Self-doubt and fear have been removed. They have a clear self-image. They know that they are a living part of AA history, and that in their journey along the Road to Happy Destiny, there is no limit to what the Higher Power can do in and through them in spiritual matters. They are always ready for Higher Power to take them places and show them things that others, because they have closed minds, are unable to see or may never see. They know that the power they have received is for healing, solving of problems, and helping those who are lost in life.

The power, that comes into and through them, is for spreading Love, transforming and assuring peace, and maturing growth, and does not change the fact that they are human beings with limitations. It is not to give them power over others, because they know the source of power is not themselves. It comes to them and moves through them by the grace of the Higher Power. The Higher Power is the true source, and to whom all thanks should go.

They know they must aim at the heavens and set themselves standards and goals that in the beginning will seem beyond reach. But as they experience growth they begin to enjoy the challenges this brings, and they should not look for perfection. One day they might get close to it.

If, on the other hand, they aim low, that is where they will always be.

Even failures have a positive contribution. Failures keep them humble, and help them to find and fix their mistakes. Failures also teach them to practice more until they are better. They know that things are never automatic in their relationship with the Higher Power, that the Higher Power wants them to learn for themselves what they are made of, so that they can fully experience the things that life brings to them.

They know that Quitting is the greatest failure of all. Don't. They may put the work aside for awhile if they must, but then they come back to it. It is the practice that gives them confidence and prepares them for the tests of life to come.

They know that the miracle of Sobriety is not something incredible. It is the thousands of changed lives.

The one who wishes to be a truly sober person must be a person of faith, and they can only work successfully with those who are also willing to have faith. Good intentions are never enough nor are excuses. The sponsor and the sponsee must be glued together in faith for the healing to occur.

The truly sober do not try to cheat, to just get by, or to fool anyone. Instead, they are the ones that always work and study the hardest, knowing that as long as they have the strength to do the Higher Power's will, they will continue to learn and to grow. They have an active sense of humor, able to laugh at themseves, and at life. Laughter breaks tension and is a very good healer. And it keeps them from taking life too seriously.

They know that the Higher Power is chief in all things at all times, always has been and always will be. They know that they shall come and go, but that the Circle of the Fellowship is turning before them every day, One Day At A Time. They know that, if they do that which the Higher Power wishes done, the Circle will keep turning long after they are gone. They know that they are the living AA history. They are the Dancers of Life. The Steps do the dancing for them.
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Postby Dallas » Fri Jun 19, 2009 11:42 pm

Wow Cessie!!! You brought a tearful stream of joy to my inner being by posting this. It is one of the most wonderful writings I've read, to date. It certainly states some very high standards for all of us that desire to live within the Fellowship of the Spirit!

It is absolutely incredible -- and I pray for blessings to it's author! Whomever that may be!

Very, very enlightening!

Yes! I would love to read more of it!!!!

Thank you so much Spons!!! :wink:

I'm not sure if I ever shared this or not on the board. I was so very fortunate to have had the opportunity and priveledge of being near many wonderful Messengers of AA, in my early sobriety and throughout my sobriety.

I'm so grateful to God, for allowing me to cross paths with them.

One of the most important lessons that I believe that was passed on to me was:

"Use everything and everyone as your sponsor -- including your sponsor, for those of you that have a sponsor. Some things and some people will teach you what to do by their example and demonstration of living -- and equally important is -- some things and some people will teach you what not to do, by their example and by their living.

Use everything for your advancement. And, freely give as you have freely received -- with no thought for rewards, or honor, or acknowledgement, or recognition, or profit or personal gain. You are but a fellow follower. What you've received is not your own -- but it belongs to Him, the great Giver of all things good!" Love one another. Share with one another and help each other. For, it is by giving away what you have -- that you will receive the fulfillment of all your needs."

Thank you for the honor and privilege to share! Thank you for extending your hands and the AA message to me -- and allowing me the opportunity to be a sober member of Alcoholics Anonymous. And, for the sobriety and the good life that I enjoy -- because of God, and AA, and for each and every single one of you! Without each and every single one of you -- regardless if sober or still drinking, regardless if it is those that came before me, those that came with me, those that will come after me -- it would not be possible for me to attain what I've attained and enjoyed without your being and without your participation in my recovery and in my life.

Dallas
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Postby sunlight » Sat Jun 20, 2009 3:24 pm

Yes! This is what I'm striving for. This is where I want to be. Thank you.

I was taking the 2nd step with a woman last night. She desperately needed hope. She was lamenting about her past and all the wrong she had done. I told her we can't change the past, and how I used to grieve over my lost innocence and thought it could never be restored. She said, "But you have restored it!" I stressed, "Not I. But there is One Who has all power to restore it." :D :wink: Then I saw that the best and maybe only way to transmit this new way of life is to live it, to be it. I knew it in my head, but she helped me really SEE it. Nothing like working with others!

Tonight is birthday night at my AA club, and I'm celebrating & speaking.

For the 1st time in my sobriety, I feel speechless! (this is a miracle in itself! :lol: ) I think I will print this out & read it. God bless, Cess. You're the greatest!
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Postby Dallas » Sat Jun 20, 2009 6:36 pm

Sunlight, is it your AA birthday???
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Postby ccs » Sat Jun 20, 2009 9:30 pm

A day or two ago, I was writing On The Sober Dance of Life and mentioned the fact that nothing happens until the power we are given by the Higher Power is put into motion. I find I need to expand on that to gain a more complete understanding....

We each are given power at birth, what I shall call the "inherent" or "natural" power to exist, to do with as we will, for good or for bad. Natural power too must be put in motion, but that is accomplished with little thought or effort on our part, and people do accomplish a broad spectrum of states with it, from extremely good to extremely bad.

But the power of which I speak is "Spiritual" Power, and that is only given us as we become spiritually cleansed through the diligent practice of Twelve Steps over time.

Long ago I wrote

"Before we came to A.A., in our worldly drunken view, we were severely limited in what we could do. By ourselves, we could do little or nothing except drown out the bleakness and frustration of life. A man without power, as I was, is nothing. With POWER, however, ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE. That POWER is, of course, SPIRITUAL POWER . . . man needs power, lots of it, to survive. This means getting in touch with the SOURCE of power . . . so that every act becomes a spiritual act, every day a spiritual day. It is thus that we come to live a COMPLETELY SPIRITUAL LIFE."
"Through the 12 Steps and 12 Traditions of A.A., we come to the full realization that the visible world is but a part of a greater spiritual world, and that the spiritual world and the visible world are one reality."

I also wrote "From my experience, seeing into the nature of God does not lay in scholarship, philosophy, in doctrines, and not even in meditation . . . It lays in one thing alone, namely seeing into the God-nature that is in each person and thing."

It is this that the Twelve Steps bring to us, the ability to see into the God-nature of all things (ourselves included), and from whence the Spiritual Power derives. It is the Higher Power working in and through us.

Most people think that to do and build great things is what really counts. But the greatest and only lasting privilege that we have is that, in spite of some of the things we think, say and do, the Higher Power is still willing to work through us, to be his mind, eyes, ears, nose, mouth, arms, hands, legs and feet here on earth. What could be greater than that?

The spiritual power, which sometimes feels like energy or an electric moment, when it is moving in and through us, is a distinctive kind of knowledge that opens the door or throws the switch, that starts the energy moving. It is the special insight that we need to break up the log-jam in our thinking and knowledge to which we have been so long accustomed. It begins with the "Moment of Clarity", that moment of experiencing the Higher Power's Grace.

We may have gathered the same amount of information that others had, but we, as drunks, couldn't get it moving. We went nowhere but down, because we had not been able to call in the power and had not been given the key or switch to turn it on, until our "Moment of Clarity" and the admission to our innermost selves, that of ourselves we were lost, that we were indeed real alcoholics.

All of us have had experiences where we have gathered a vast body of information about something, and were unable to do anything of value with it. We thought about it, and thought about it, and thought about it, and nothing happened. . . And then, one day, the great 'Ah Ha!' instant came when the light comes on, and we are given the way to go . . . everything takes off.

So, spiritual power is not an all-the-time everywhere present energy, it is the prime-mover, the key insight, the "Moment of Clarity" given us by the Higher Power.

Before the moment of clarity, we were like sewerpipes clogged with junk and other deposits that we had put in the Higher Power's way when we had asked him to help us. Things like Judgement, Unforgiveness, Doubt, Guilt, Reluctance, Fear, Selfishness, Self-pity, Self-righteousness, ###, telling the Higher Power our will for him, how to carry it out, and when it should be done. With that attitude, spiritual power cannot be put in motion. Not until we got rid of all the crap, until we had emptied Us out, flushed Us so to speak. Not until we have completely abandoned and surrendered our will to his, and become hollow pipes through which his power could flow.

A paradox, but that is the name of the game, surrender, Surrender to Win.

Even though we have received power, it doesn't go into action automatically, it does not move on its own. Something more is required of us. We must show faith and commitment by doing the things the Higher Power has placed before us, the Twelve Steps, which our sponsors teach us to do. We begin by letting the Higher Power know that we are willing to become his servant and the servant of others in our Third Step Prayer and then we search within ourselves, seeking to find all those things which are blocking us, so that we can live and walk this way of life. These we find and relinguish to the Higher Power as we continue our step work. The Tenth Step is most valuable in checking up on ourselves that we are walking the pathways of our "Sober Dance of Life." And we gain assuredness that this walk does not stop until we die. The important thing is that we let the Higher Power know, in our Eleventh Step that we are continually willing to let him lead our way, and then wait patiently in our meditation for the answers, which are sure to come.

Sometimes the gift of power, of insight, is not always right away. Sometimes we need further help to get ready to receive the answers, so that when they come, we will be able to make the best use of them in helping ourselves and others.

With time and experience, it becomes clear that the dynamics of spiritual power are simply extraordinary. As we become more and more the servant of the Higher Power and others, we find that rather than becoming of no consequence in the servant role, every ability and quality that we have is added to and called into motion. The utmost is made of us. Our self-esteem and sense of personal value rises to its zenith and beyond!!

To summarize the foregoing about spiritual power, God's plan is for man to learn the lessons of Love, upon which the universe is based. We are each given natural power at birth. We are also surrounded by spiritual (or supranatural) power, the spiritual knowledge, including the knowledge needed to obtain and set the power in motion.

All human beings and other life and non-life forms are born with the natural power to exist, each has its own spirit, but if we wish to go beyond this and have accomplished in and through us such spiritual wonders as the healing of seemingly hopeless states of mind and body, with freedom from fear, love and tolerance of others, sanely responding to life in all its many aspects, we must totally entrust ourselves to the Higher Power, and then call into ourselves, by the continual practice of the Twelve Steps, his power to be added to our natural power to exist. In the continued practice of the Twelve Steps, we receive not only the knowledge we need to understand what we are given, but the ways we need to follow to set the power in motion.

We can only learn these lessons by giving love to our neighbor, for the regiving and return of that love by our neighbor. Service to one's neighbor is the highest principle of life. The value of every man to every other man is the greatest source of mankind's happiness and prosperity. Peace and happiness can only be acquired by the realization of man's asset value to man, and the conservation of that value by mutual service, one to another. No house can be divided against itself and survive -- be it one house or a world of houses.

The Twelve Steps and our Higher Power are healing that division within ourselves as we set the spiritual power in motion, and now, as servants of our Higher Power we carry the message forward to others, that the world may be healed, and the Circle of Fellowship, the Sacred Hoop, of Unity, of Service, of Recovery, be completed.



Love and Peace, Barefoot

Barefoot Bob Hardison

Born: August 8th, 1933

Sobriety Date: February 28th, 1974

Died: January 31st, 2009
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Postby sunlight » Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:11 am

Wow Cess, that is awesome! Many thanks.

To me, ol' Bob is right on the beam. I think I remember Clancy once likening conscious contact with God to being tuned in to a radio station. If you're on the beam, there is harmonious music and a clear reception. If you're off the frequency, there's only static.

My AA birthday is Thursday. Six years, by the grace of God and AA! :D (That's 52,464 hours by the sobriety counter :wink: )

I read what you posted earlier, Cessie, when it was my turn to speak at birthday night at the AA club. People's eyes were as wide as saucers and their mouths were hanging open. You touched a lot of people.

We are the luckiest people in the world to have the program and each other! I am so bloomin' happy right now that I better go put some rocks in my shoes or I'm gonna just float away. (I think I need Geoff's "feet planted firmly on the ground" talk again! :lol: But not just yet. I need to celebrate!) :D
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Postby Dallas » Sun Jun 21, 2009 7:26 pm

Thank you Cessie -- and also -- Thank you Barefoot!!! You helped many of us -- including me -- with your great efforts and example of carrying the message. You are greatly missed! I'm sure that all of your work and words will continue to help and to bless us, and many who will follow us!

Thank you for all that you did -- and all that you are still doing -- for AA and the Fellowship!

Gratefully,

Dallas B.
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Postby ccs » Sun Jun 21, 2009 10:14 pm

Thanks Guys but all I did was copy and paste
Barefoot did all the rest

I think hes there in the great meeting in the sky with Bill &DR Bob and all the pioneers that paved the way for us I`m just so greatful that they left so much behind for us to live & learn by I bet their having a grand old time

GOD BLESS & thanks to them all
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Postby Dallas » Mon Jun 22, 2009 12:27 am

Cessie, there is a little part on page 164... that often causes me to think they might be right here with us! (When they're not other places!) :wink:
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