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Big Book Study - Post #32

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  • Jim K.
    Good morning everyone! Let s go to page 100, last paragraph- Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things alcoholics are not supposed to do.
    Message 1 of 96 , Mar 2, 2009
      Good morning everyone!

      Let's go to page 100, last paragraph-

      "Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things
      alcoholics are not supposed to do. People have said that we must not
      go where liquor is served; we must not have it in our homes; we must
      shun friends who drink; we must avoid moving pictures which show
      drinking scenes; we must not go into bars; our friends must hide
      their bottles if we go to their house; we mustn't think or be
      reminded about alcohol at all. Our experience shows this isn't
      necessarily so."

      "We meet these conditions every day. An alcoholic who cannot meet
      them, still has an alcoholic mind; there is something the matter
      with his spiritual status."

      These are some very important lines in the Big Book. Having an
      alcoholic mind means we haven't had a spiritual awakening, we
      haven't changed sufficiently to have recovered from alcoholism. If,
      when confronted with circumstances where we obsess on the alcohol in
      a given setting, we should be taking our own inventories to reveal
      why this is so. Let's go back for a moment to page 84, at the
      bottom. The third sentance in the paragraph at the bottom says: "We
      will seldom be interested in liquor." Reviewing these 10th step
      promises we see that we have an entirely new state of mind when it
      comes to alcohol.

      Returning to page 101 it is easy to see why we are on dangerous
      ground when we continue to obsess about alcohol when in such
      situations. Remember, we cannot defeat this obsession on our own, it
      can only be vanquished through a spiritual awakening that is THE
      RESULT of the 12 Steps.

      So, to summarize: if we have had a spiritual awakening and are in
      fit spiritual condition we are able to go anywhere if our motives
      are thoroughly good. Does that mean someone can go to a strip club
      and drink cokes all night while indulging in a favorite defect of
      character? Probably not, because his motives are spiritually flawed.
      But can he go to a family gathering where there will be people who
      can drink with impunity? Most definitely, assuming he is in fit
      spiritual condition.

      Let's turn to page 102 paragraph 2 - "Your job now is to be at the
      place where you may be of maximum helpfulness to others, so never
      hesitate to go anywhere if you can be helpful. You should not
      hesitate to visit the most sordid spot on earth on such an errand.
      Keep on the firing line of life with these motives and God will keep
      you unharmed."

      What does this mean? Sometimes we may find ourselves in situations
      where there is alcohol involved. If we are not in fit spiritual
      condition our ability to be of maximum helpfulness to others is
      compromised. In fact our ability to seek and do God's will is
      hampered. You will also notice that this is the second place in
      the Big Book where "the firing line" is mentioned. Go back to The
      Doctor's Opinion, you'll see it there also (third paragraph on page
      xxviii). "The firing line" is another way of saying we must remain
      familiar with our alcoholism - "keep the memory green" so to speak.
      If we aren't carrying this message we may forget where we came from.
      We may even begin to think that we were just connoissuers of fine
      wines and beers. If we stay on the firing line of life we will never
      forget the type of drinkers we were.

      "After all, our problems were of our own making. Bottles were only a
      symbol. Besides, we have stopped fighting anybody or anything. We
      have to!"

      Alcoholism comes in people, not bottles and we have created most, if
      not all, of our own problems. This is the second place where we have
      stopped fighting - again, review pages 84 and 85.

      With our next post we will go on to Chapter 8 - To Wives.

      Have a great day!

      Jim

      Weekend Big Book Studies with Jim & Dave - visit:
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Big_Book_Seminars

      For a weekly chuckle visit:
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/The_Friday_Chuckle
    • Jim K
      Good Morning! Let s go to page 100, last paragraph- Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things alcoholics are not supposed to do. People
      Message 96 of 96 , Nov 20

        Good Morning!

        Let's go to page 100, last paragraph-

        "Assuming we are spiritually fit, we can do all sorts of things alcoholics are not supposed to do. People have said that we must not go where liquor is served; we must not have it in our homes; we must shun friends who drink; we must avoid moving pictures which show drinking scenes; we must not go into bars; our friends must hide their bottles if we go to their house; we mustn't think or be reminded about alcohol at all. Our experience shows this isn't necessarily so."

        "We meet these conditions every day. An alcoholic who cannot meet them, still has an alcoholic mind; there is something the matter with his spiritual status."

        These are some very important lines in the Big Book. Having an alcoholic mind means we haven't had a spiritual awakening, we haven't changed sufficiently to have recovered from alcoholism. If, when confronted with circumstances where we obsess on the alcohol in a given setting, we should be taking our own inventories to reveal why this is so. Let's go back for a moment to page 84, at the bottom. The third sentence in the paragraph at the bottom says: "We will seldom be interested in liquor." Reviewing these 10th step promises we see that we have an entirely new state of mind when it comes to alcohol.

        Returning to page 101 it is easy to see why we are on dangerous ground when we continue to obsess about alcohol when in such situations. Remember, we cannot defeat this obsession on our own, it can only be vanquished through a spiritual awakening that is THE RESULT of the 12 Steps.

        So, to summarize: if we have had a spiritual awakening and are in fit spiritual condition we are able to go anywhere if our motives are thoroughly good. Does that mean someone can go to a strip club and drink cokes all night while indulging in a favorite defect of character? Probably not, because his motives are spiritually flawed. But can he go to a family gathering where there will be people who can drink with impunity? Most definitely, assuming he is in fit spiritual condition.

        Let's turn to page 102 paragraph 2 -
        "Your job now is to be at the place where you may be of maximum helpfulness to others, so never hesitate to go anywhere if you can be helpful. You should not hesitate to visit the most sordid spot on earth on such an errand. Keep on the firing line of life with these motives and God will keep you unharmed."

        What does this mean? Sometimes we may find ourselves in situations where there is alcohol involved. If we are not in fit spiritual condition our ability to be of maximum helpfulness to others is compromised. In fact our ability to seek and do God's will is hampered. You will also notice that this is the second place in the Big Book where "the firing line" is mentioned. Go back to The Doctor's Opinion, you'll see it there also (third paragraph on page xxviii). "The firing line" is another way of saying we must remain familiar with our alcoholism - "keep the memory green" so to speak. If we aren't carrying this message we may forget where we came from. We may even begin to think that we were just connoisseurs of fine wines and beers. If we stay on the firing line of life we will never forget the type of drinkers we were.

        "After all, our problems were of our own making. Bottles were only a symbol. Besides, we have stopped fighting anybody or anything. We have to!"

        Alcoholism comes in people, not bottles and we have created most, if not all, of our own problems. This is the second place where we have stopped fighting - again, review pages 84 and 85.

        With our next post we will go on to Chapter 8 - To Wives.

         

        Have a great day!

         

        Jim K. - The Into Action Group of Manhattan
        6:30pm Wednesdays at St. Francis De Sales Church
        135 East 96th Street (Near Lexington Avenue)
        On Manhattan's Upper East Side

         

        Weekend retreats with Jim: http://www.spiritualawakeningsretreats.com

         

        The Wilson House – The Birthplace of Bill Wilson - Weekend Retreats and Workshops -http://www.wilsonhouse.org/

        It is better to be loved for what you have given
        than to be admired for what you have gained
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