Time sure fly’s when you’re having clean & sober fun! It’s April 2013! (Roll your eyes) – “like you didn’t know – huh”? I’m gonna make a point, just hang on.
I’ve been writing the blog now for better than two years and that means I can measure my growth and progress. Why not use the IVth Step process - reflection for the method? First, I’m gonna help put us all in the mood for contemplation with this excellent video on meditation (Sorry, you’ll have to cut & paste but it’s worth it)
What I thought about Step IV in 2011:
“This fact finding mission is one in which we sweep the searchlight of inquiry over all the events of our lives. This is an effort to find our stowed-away resentments towards others; to be specific about what we feel has been done to us or how we have been injured; to discover our role in the matter and to determine what we might have done differently. We further chronicle the events that we have hidden in our Pandora’s Box; those acts we have been ashamed of where we know that – in our own way – we carry regret and remorse for the way we have wronged others. Some of these may be buried deep within our subconscious and take some effort to exhume.
A bit like an archeological expedition, the more effort we put into this “dig” the more we turn-up, for things are often not what they seem. We discover that we have perhaps produced a whole pattern of dishonesty with ourselves, about our justifications for our anger – even hatred and vengeful ideas or plans.
Yes, it’s a discovery,…. and often to our surprise, we find that THESE were the reasons, (right or wrong) why we felt a need to fumigate our perspective with Alcoholism or other addictions. When we’re finished we’ll be looking straight into our own road-map of events and low and behold,…. out of that Chaos Theory,…we begin to see patterns”!
Then,……in 2012, I had this to say about Step IV:
Step IV suggests that as a basis for comparison, we consider our moral inventory in terms of its failures regarding the 7 Capital Sins: Pride, Greed, Anger, Envy, Lust, Gluttony and Sloth. But hasn’t each of those instances in our recollected lives been created through a violation of the first of the Oxford Groups four basic Tenets: Absolute Honesty?
Our old friend rationalization helps us twist and obscure the truth of our involvement in the essay for today regarding Lust: our gluttonous appetite for sexual satisfaction which is attained only in the sense of selfish ego boosting conquest and our satiation of the moment, almost instantly renewing its insatiable hunger,… again and again. Now we see, Lust is never really satisfied until it becomes tempered by Love and Respect.
If you are interested in following the book and have a Kindle reader, join the Prime Program and borrow the book for FREE through May 2013. That’ll give you time to decide on whether its something you’ll add to your recovery literature collection. Many use it for a quick daily read using apps for: iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, PC, Mac, BlackBerry, and Android.
Here’s my website, where you can see other examples and get the book in signed softback original (150 left of the first 1,000, lst Edition) www:livingtwelvestepsrecovery.com
where you can see my latest book: “Tales From the Center of the Herd” – short stories of long term sobriety and recovery – “Once a Zebra, Always a Zebra”.
Now, here’s that reading on Lust and personal moral inventory.
WHEN SEXUAL PURSUIT BECOMES LUST
We ask of ourselves: “How, when, and where did my lustful sexual pursuits hurt other people and injure me? It’s possible my marriage and children were damaged as a result of those indiscretions, or that my good standing in the community may have been jeopardized by these acts.
How is it that I reacted to these situations at the time—was it with a burning, lingering guilt? Did I excuse myself by insisting that I was the pursued and never the pursuer?
What were my reactions to my sexual frustrations? When denied, did I become vengeful or depressed? Does it appear I took it out on other people? Back when there was rejection or coldness at home, do I recall I used this as a convenient reason to be promiscuous?
To appease my carnal hunger, could I have broken promises or vows of commitment, causing another to do the same, utilizing deception, lying, and exploitation?
In our own variations we ask ourselves these questions. We do so thoroughly examining the pursuit of our sexual instinct, acknowledging the time, the place, and by what circumstances we knew those urges had gone awry, becoming lust. This inventory ought to be quite thorough, omitting or excusing nothing.
Now, here in April 2013, what can I add to the above? First – no inventory is complete without asking ourselves the question: “How important, in the grand scheme of my life, was this incident? Was it really worthy of all the anger and resentment I may have put into it, even to the insane planning of revenge?
As to Lust, we ALL got it. The less sex you’re getting, the more important to you it is! It doesn’t serve any of us any good to blow our natural compulsive obsession to satisfy ourselves out of proportion, or do the worst: exploit new men and women who are coming to our meetings trying to find their recovery and sobriety only to find us trying to give them a hand,….in their pants….and worse yet under the guise of assisting them in their honest efforts to change.
We all know where this got Bill Wilson and how he became so out of control that his friends told him that he either cut it out or “one of us has to go.”
What’s our motivation for all this self-searching and self-examination, this fearless and through moral inventory, like an archeological dig through our past? We want to change.
In order to do so, we have to know who and what we have been, where, why and how it happened and who it involved. ItHASto be done in writing, so we have a clear view and the evidence entered under our own hand. Through this process we can see the patterns of our behavior that led us to where we are. Like George Benson said: “Everything Must Change” – a good listen to close.