Define "getting rid of resentments"

12 Steps: Discussions related to the 12 Steps and using them as a treatment to recover from alcohol and drug addiction.
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Postby Susan68 » Wed Jul 01, 2009 8:56 pm

Damn Dallas. No stink. Looks like Dallas just took me through step 4!!! Who needs a sponsor?! (just kiddin', I'm going to get one, I swear!)

You and a few others take so much time to type out this stuff. I know you'll say it ultimately helps you in your sobriety, but know that it does not fall on deaf "eyes."

Thanks, seriously, to all those (you know who you are) who take so much time to respond to my posts and send me encouraging PMs.

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Postby Susan68 » Wed Jul 01, 2009 9:05 pm

Mmm, mmm, mmm . . .

I'm reading these responses from the last one posted up and I must say, Garden Variety's response was stellar too! I think this is some your best stuff guys. These responses are keepers.

Thanks. Damn. . .

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Postby Susan68 » Wed Jul 01, 2009 9:14 pm

Ditto to the rest of you who responded to this.

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Postby Dallas » Wed Jul 01, 2009 9:22 pm

Remember... Step 4 will be of no value... without Steps 1, 2, 3, right in front of it... If you notice on page 63, right after completing Step 3, "we launched... (like a rocket)... into..." Step 4.

The alcoholic becomes willing to "take the Steps"... so that they can "get over their drinking problem"... they are not doing it to... "find God", or "get peace" or "become a better person" or any of that stuff...

It's the Alcoholism that is going to kill them.... whether they're drinking alcohol or not... (yes, as in sober... actually killing an alcoholic!).

They think the problem is drinking... But, drinking isn't the problem. Drinking is the solution... to "treat their alcoholism."

Now, they reach a place that the drinking phase of their alcoholism is killing them... and it's killing them to live without alcohol...

That's why I say "alcohol is not their problem"... the "alcoholism" is the problem. If the alcoholism doesn't get treated... drinking or not drinking... the alcoholism will kill them. They'll look for a rope. A window or a bridge. Or, they go nuts and have to be locked up forever... because they become a danger to themselves and to others.

Or... they just drink themselves to death.

"The alcoholic death" referred to in Chapter 4, BB... includes "sober alcoholic death."

page 44/45... BB:

"To be doomed to an alcoholic death or to live on a spiritual basis are not always easy alternatives to face."

If a mere code of morals or a better philosophy of life were sufficient to overcome alcoholism, many of us ...would have recovered long ago. But we found that such codes and philosophies did not save us, no matter how
much we tried. We could wish to be moral, we could wish to be philosophically comforted, in fact, we could will these things with all our might, but the needed power wasn’t there. Our human resources, as marshalled by the will, were not sufficient; they failed utterly."

You see... some alkies come into AA and in the fog they get confused and stay confused even after they are physically sober.

They see the 12 Steps as a code of "Moral Objectives"... "Oh! Okay! I get it! Just practice these principles! And, I'll become a better person!"

That leads to alcoholic death... and they become blinded, and are "the blind being led by the blind"... so, they never recover in the since, that our friend "txsuperman" was trying to explain, in regards to the "recover, recovery, recovered" controversy...

So, they try to "practice these principles" BEFORE they have had the "AWAKENED HEART, MIND, SPIRIT"... experience... (call it similar to an old-fashioned religious born-again, transformed... conversion)... "A Miracle" that is not really a Miracle!

This is what William James, the Psychologist wrote about (actually the transcripts of lectures that he gave)... in the book "Varieties of Religious Experience"... that Bill Wilson, had his friend Ebby bring to him, while he was being treated at Townes Hospital...

It is a literal transformation in the psyche that takes place... as a result of following a certain formula of actions...

I don't like using the term brain wash... or hypnosis... in this regard, which are also psychological reactions to a certain set of stimuli.

So, I guess I could just say a "brain-changing, psychological soul surgery... that occurs as the result of a certain modality of systematicaly applied actions."

Kind of like Volunteer for having one's self go through self-induced "Water Boarding?" :lol: :lol: :lol:

If you don't follow the technique as it best produces the result... you'll never get the same results!


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Postby DiggerinVA » Thu Jul 02, 2009 5:42 am

Dallas the shaking of my head is in response to "Looking at it from the other side" and why did it take me so long. Duh!!!

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Postby Dallas » Thu Jul 02, 2009 6:30 am

I understand, Stan!

What an awesome experience it is to walk through the Journey of the 12 Steps ... and I think this is what Bill W., was referring to when he wrote in regards to him feeling like he had been rocketed into the 4th diminsion!

In each one of the Steps there is a "feeling" (an emotional reaction) that is associated with each Step.

We can actually devise a way to "measure" and "test" to see if we have thoroughly taken each of the Steps, by checking "Did I experience this while taking this Step?" Or, "did I experience that... while taking this Step?"

The best device that I've discovered to "measure my progress through each Step" (or to measure the progress of the person that I'm taking through the Steps)... is to use the Big Book's instructions and comments for each Step, and turn it into a test... Where we can ask: "Did you experience this?"

It's kind of like going to an amusement part for the rides... then, buying a ticket for each ride... and patiently waiting for my turn to get on the ride.

I watch the people getting off the ride, and see what happened to them... and listen to them as they pass by me, talking with each other and describing "what it was like for them."

If I didn't have a similar experience... I can ask myself "Well, did you buy the ticket, wait in the line... and spend your time just listening to the experience of others... Or... did you get on the ride yourself?"

While it's true that we won't be able to measure ALL the progress that took place for us on each Step, or after all 12 Steps... we will notice many demonstrable differences in our state of being. (Others will notice the changes more and faster than we will... which is one good reason for having a guide... When we have the fortunate opportunity to have a guide...through the Steps... we're not left to our own thinking about it and they can help us). A guide isn't necessary to get from point A to point B... but it can be like the difference in driving a car or riding a bicycle on a journey... the car has A/C, nice seats, gets you there faster, nice music, a radio, and you can have the company of friends with you while you travel! :lol:

Another illustration might be in having your own personal GPS device with you as you trudge the road through the 12 Steps... the GPS device can alert you when you're on-course and off-course. The GPS isn't necessary... but, it sure is handy and nice! Of course, then again... perhaps the Big Book can be used as a GPS... and it becomes "more than a map" to progress.

I remember an experience, when I was new... sitting in an AA meeting thinking... :lol: :lol: ... and my thoughts were "Well, if by practicing these principles and becoming a better person, and a good person, and knowing about God, and living with better morals... will solve my problems... why is that Priest and Policeman and a Judge... and that little mom over there... that I can tell is a good person... in here?

Surely! The priest knows way much more than I do about being good and having higher standards of morals! And, he's saying... that... in a way... he's just like me... he can't stay stopped in his drinking! That he's powerless over it! Surely, he's not only a better and gooder (yep, my word again)... and more spiritual, and more loving and kind - than me! But, he's got to know God! That's his job!"

Then, the priest shares about his little Home Group that is filled with priests!!! :shock: :shock: And, I was shocked! Surely! They have wonderful relationships with God!

And, then, when I read of Dr. Bob... Dr. Bob was a Charter Member of the Oxford Groups... he was like the equivelant of a deacon in his church... he prayed, he had most of the formula that Bill shared with him... but, Dr. Bob was very religious, very spiritual, very close to God... but, he couldn't stay sober! Bill was known to refer to Dr. Bob, when it came to spiritual or religious questions... saying "Dr. Bob knows way more than me in those areas!" Yet... Bill had experienced the "Awakened" experience, he was trying to help alcoholics... AND he had the information that Silkworth passed on to him, in regards to alcoholism.

I don't write these things to discount what a wonderful experience it is to have a relationship with a personal God... nothing could compare with that. I don't discount the value in having and living with a higher standard of morals and higher ideals... (they are all imperative, in my opinion... to lasting long-term happy... sobriety)... but, they are NOT ENOUGH in themselves... to keep me sober! :lol: That's alcoholism!

There are many way-good people out there... much better of a person than I'll ever be... and some of them are living homeless on skidrow, drinking daily till they pass out and wake up again and start the cycle all over. It isn't about them "not being good people"... it's about them "being alcoholic." They are good people -- and -- they are alcoholic.


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Re: AA Getting Rid of Resentments

Postby Susan68 » Sun Jul 05, 2009 5:07 pm

Dallas wrote:(to keep this short-er... refer to the downloads that I have posted to outline this process at: )

Actually, I have printed them out. I had to make photocopies of them, however, because you leave only tiny spaces there Dallas!

Oh, and I read your other post where you suggest that anyone with less than a year sobriety should shut up. I've yet to hear any newcomers speak at meetings. With the exception of one meltdown I had in a meeting once I actually have never spoken in one. I'm a really shy gal at meetings.

Good thing this site isn't AA, lest someone attempt to "put me in my place."

Dallas, I hope to get to meet you someday. 8)

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Postby gunner48 » Sun Jul 05, 2009 6:54 pm

Having good sponsorship has paid off for me over the years. in forgiving I had to understand that in order to be forgiven the wrongs I had done I had to forgive each person on my grudge list one and all. What right did I have to ask for forgiveness if I couldn't or woundn't forgive. I had to ask for the powder to forgfive until it came. I read several time about the toss pot calling the kettle black. I think it applys here . I go to my fellows with a honest and forgiving heart. My sponsor didn't allow me to ask for forgiviness until I had forgiven.

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Postby Dallas » Mon Jul 06, 2009 1:25 am

Hey Gunner! Welcome to the site! Great to have you here. It may not look like it... but, I really do like reading more than writing! So, I encourage you to keep me reading! :wink:

I agree... Nothing seems to be as good... as good sponsorship! Those that have it (yep, I do to)... are the fortunate ones!

Gee. We're not too far away from each other! Do you go to the Springtime in the Ozarks convention in Eureka Springs? Maybe, we'll get a chance to have a real cup of coffee together some time!

Susan68 wrote:Oh, and I read your other post where you suggest that anyone with less than a year sobriety should shut up.

Hi Susan! You need to send me a link to that post... if I wrote that as my suggestion... I need to correct it! That isn't my idea or suggestion.

Also, I never tell anyone to shut up... unless I'm mad and ready to fight! :lol: :lol:

I can't afford to get mad... I didn't say... "I don't get mad"... just, I can't afford to get mad! :wink:

Can you imagine what would have happened if Bill W. waited for a year of sobriety to talk to Dr. Bob? None of us would be here! Bill knew he was going to drink as he stood in the lobby of the Mayflower Hotel, in Akron... and he knew that the only way he would have a defense against that next first drink... was to find another alcoholic to talk to and try to help them! :wink:

Perhaps, you got me mixed up with someone else??? Or... maybe I wasn't clear in what I wrote and I need to correct it.


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Postby Dallas » Mon Jul 06, 2009 1:37 am

BTW: Thanks to Gunner and to GardenVariety for sharing your great insight on forgiveness!

I think I should start a new topic titled "Forgiveness? How do you do it? How can you do it?

I tried and tried and tried... and prayed and prayed and prayed, all to no avail! I just couldn't do it! Not even "with God's help!"

That was the thing that baffled me... I couldn't even spell the word, let alone figure out how to do it! I was really stuck on that.

What I think is kind of cool... is that I had done what I needed to do, to forgive... and I forgave... but, I didn't know what forgiveness was!

Alot of things that I couldn't spell and couldn't pronounce and couldn't do... because they weren't in my vocabulary for living... I was doing them, without the knowlege of knowing that I was doing them... by simply taking the actions of taking the 12 Steps!

That's kind of what I mean when I refer to "a program of action -- and not a program of thinking."

If I had to think and figure it out and understand it... I could never get it done! If I wasn't already dead... I'd still be drinking and thinking!!! :lol:

Fortunately... I heard someone else... say to someone else... "Can you put your brain on pause for a little while... and just focus on doing this?"

(I was burglarizing their conversation!)...

I wondered... Could I do that, too? So... I tried it. :wink:


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