Oct 18 – Eye Opener (1950)
The life of the alcoholic is very similar to a jigsaw puzzle. In our days of drinking, the whole of life appeared as simply a jumbled mass of unrelated pieces, impossible to unscramble.
In AA, someone gave us the corner-piece and, from this, we slowly and laboriously found one piece after another. Each piece that we fitted in made it easier to find the next piece.
First, we found understanding, then hope, then determination, then sobriety, then unselfishness, then love, then faith and finally God.
All the pieces are in place finally, the picture makes sense – and it is beautiful to behold.
October 18 — Big Book Quote
“This world of ours has made more material progress in the last century than in all the millenniums which went before. Almost everyone knows the reason. Students of ancient history tell us that the intellect of men in those days was equal to the best of today. Yet in ancient times material progress was painfully slow. The spirit of modern scientific inquiry, research and invention was almost unknown. In the realm of the material, men’s minds were fettered by superstition, tradition, and all sorts of fixed ideas. Some of the contemporaries of Columbus though a round earth preposterous. Others came near putting Galileo to death for his astronomical heresies.
We asked ourselves this: Are not some of us just as biased and unreasonable about the realm of the spirit as were the ancients about the realm of the material?”
Alcoholics Anonymous, PG 51
Walk In Dry Places — October 18
THOSE WHO WANT IT, NOT THOSE WHO NEED IT.
In the first bloom of sobriety, many recovering people confront drinking companions who also “need” the program. They’re often surprised and disillusion when efforts to help their friends are rejected… sometimes curtly.
We’re truly limited to helping those who desire recovery, not those who we think need it. Though intervention methods can be effective, we’re still largely helpless to assist those who don’t desire recovery.
We regret that we really have no answers for the millions who perish from alcoholism, unaware of their problem. We also can hold out little hope that any future recovery attempts will succeed without the individual alcoholic’s cooperation.
Desire….. a personal determination and decision…. is necessary for almost any kind of change. We have the freedom to choose in many areas of our lives, and alcoholics must eventually choose recovery in order to find and maintain it.
“Though I’d love to see others recover, I must accept the fact that their personal desire and choice is necessary. I’ll remember this if any opportunities arise today to carry the message.”
Stools & Bottles — Day 18
Eighteenth Daily Reminder —
Vindictiveness is a stumbling block to recovery for many members. They go to meetings and talk the program but reserve the right to suspect and hate–also the privilege of revenge. They are the advocates of justified resentments. They miss contented sobriety and wonder why AA fails to work for them.
Daily Inventory —
Why is revenge so disturbing to an alcoholic’s peace of mind? Is resentment justified? Do hatred and revenge bar our chances for contented sobriety?
Suggested Meditation —
Our revengeful attitudes are indicative of reservations to the AA program. They oppose a great fundamental principle which requires us to forgive before we can be forgiven. Resentment and vindictiveness are forms of mental drunkenness which AA never justifies. Revengeful alcoholics are of their 12 Step base. Prayer puts them back on again. We should try praying for those we hate. It pays well.
Spiritual Contact —
Our Father, alert us to the future drunkenness which lies in attitudes of hatred and revenge. Help us to overcome them by praying for those we hate.
Daily Physical Audit —
How often do we meditate upon the value of a healthy body to help arrest our alcoholism? Not enough, to be sure. What a shame to wait until some illness disables us before we realize the positive necessity of good health to our recovery. We need observe only a few simple rules to keep well. Systematic living habits which give us adequate exercise, fresh air, sunlight, food and rest are essential to a healthy body.