Recovery: The ONLY Requirement for Membership

The ONLY requirement for membership in our many recovery fellowships is “THE DESIRE TO STOP” what ever Addiction has rendered you powerless and made your life unmanageable.

I’m not going to quote the Third Tradition verbatim – you see it was written in the early 1950s – some 64 years ago – and we have all come to  its standing conclusion: a common respect for its fundamental principle, “THE DESIRE TO STOP”.

That may be why we have established a traditional practice for identifying ourselves by our personal affliction: drug addict, alcoholism, gambling, food, etc. Some say there are over 200 fellowships following the spiritual principles of 12Step Recovery and admitting who – what we are and what we can be if we follow these principles (a definition of real Humility) helps to observe that tradition. 

We also agree, if you are not yet willing to muster your desire to stop, when will you? If you are drunk or high at our meetings, we usually give you one shot to get your mind right – but don’t come back loaded – it insults us and proves you “have no desire to stop.” While we love to laugh and joke, recovery and sobriety,….these are serious businesses and we won’t have them mocked. We want to make it simple for all to  understand:

“Show us – speak and act by your desire to STOP and you are welcome to call yourself one of us”.

It’s rare for me to use Hard Rock + Roll to make my point while trying to entertain you, but I just gotta throw this Rod Hot Chilli Peppers Tune in this presentation:

Can’t Seem To Stop

*Dedicated to my Old WWII Vet Friend Hal Davidson who passed a few months back – “The Tree Man” in my awarded book:

“Tales From the Center of the Herd – Once A Zebra – Always A Zebra”

(This is a copyrighted drawing from my 1st book)

“Living the 12 Steps of Recovery – One Day at a Time”

12th Step

Sweet. Short. Simple. It’s the end of March and when you next read my blog, I’ll be talking about other issues and Step IV. In the meantime and before I go, here’s a short, but great article about  Relapse in Long-term Recovery – just in case anybody starts thinking they’re cured 🙂

Relapse After Long-Term Recovery

How to Quiet One’s Racing Mind

I often find excellent guidance in grooming my spiritual self from my friends and mentors: TheDailyOhm All of us continue to seek balance from the chattering random thoughts that dominate our consciousness. Here’s a good place for the 12 Step Spiritualist to begin, with links to the courses if you decide to enhance.


March 29, 2014
How to Quiet the Mind
From How to Quiet the Mind On-Line Course

by Gina Lake

The following is an excerpt from the “How to Quiet the Mind” on-line course. If you would like to take the entire course, click here.

The mind is a wonderful tool for thinking, but it has a dark side. There is an aspect of the mind that is not useful but pretends to be useful, which is called the egoic mind. It is the aspect of our mind that chats with us as we move about our day. It is the “voice in our head,” as Eckhart Tolle calls it. Much of the time, this voice seems like our own thoughts and our own voice, and we often express these thoughts (e.g., “I love doing that!” “I can’t wait until tomorrow.” “I wonder what will happen”). At other times, this voice is like the voice of a parent or other authority figure or a friend (e.g., “You should try harder.” “Don’t forget to take your vitamins.” “Wouldn’t it be fun to try that!”). It may even seem evil or mean (e.g., “You never do anything right. You’re worthless. You might as well give up”). We tend to take this voice seriously—we believe it, agree with it, and don’t question it. We believe it because we are programmed, or wired, to believe our ow! n thoughts, regardless of whether they are true and helpful or not.

Not only do we believe these thoughts, but we believe they are “ours.” We identify with them—we feel they reflect who we are. We don’t tend to question our own thoughts, although we readily question other people’s thoughts, especially if those thoughts are different from ours. But when we stop and examine what this mental voice is saying, we discover a lot of contradictory advice, misinformation, prejudices, judgments, and other negativity. This mental voice is often unkind, belittling, fearful, self-doubting, judgmental, complaining, confused, and unhelpful.

It turns out that the voice in our head is not a very good guide to life, and yet we tend to accept what it says and do what it suggests. This voice, in fact, is the cause of human suffering. It fights life, rails against it, and is discontent and afraid. It is the voice of the false self—the ego—not the true self. The thoughts that arise in our mind cause every negative emotion we experience: fear, guilt, anger, jealousy, shame, sadness, resentment, envy, hopelessness, worthlessness, and depression. Without these thoughts, we would live in peace within ourselves and in harmony with others. But you already know this, don’t you?

The funny thing is that we can see the truth about the egoic mind and still be entranced by it, still be mesmerized by it. The programming to pay attention to and believe this aspect of the mind is very strong, and it takes not only seeing the truth about it, but also a practice, as in meditation, of not giving our attention to this mental voice before we gain enough distance from it to experience freedom and the joy and peace of our true self, or Essence, as I like to call it.

The reason for moving out of the egoic mind and into the Now is to experience who we really are. Our thoughts represent the false self, the ego. In fact, all the false self is, is thoughts. There is no substance, no thing, that is the false self—only thoughts. The false self is made up of ideas about yourself: “I’m a woman, I’m a mother, I don’t like traveling, I’m middle-aged, I like blue, I’m married, my father deserted me when I was young, I want to be a novelist, I’m not pretty enough,” and so on. Such ideas create an image and sense of yourself, but you are not an image or even this sense of yourself. Images aren’t real or true. Feelings about yourself aren’t even real or true, since they are based only on thoughts, which aren’t real or true. Who you really are has nothing to do with any of these ideas, feelings about yourself, or stories you tell about yourself.

Your true self is the experience of yourself existing in this moment, free of such constructs, stories, and self-images. To experience your true self, or Essence, you have to move out of your self-images and thoughts about yourself into the experience you are having right here and now, absent of thoughts and self-images, which obscure who you really are. We become entranced by our thoughts and overlook reality—the real experience we are having here and now. The egoic mind, however, doesn’t want you to stop paying attention to it, so it continually tries to engage your attention. It persists in this because this is how the false self is maintained. If you stop paying attention to your thoughts, the false self disappears, and all that’s left is Essence—the real you who is experiencing this moment.

There is something else here besides this character you suppose yourself to be, and that’s what is actually living your life. This that you truly are is looking out of your eyes, hearing sounds, reading and understanding these words, and having every other experience that is part of this very unique and potentially delightful moment. What else are you experiencing besides reading? What colors are you experiencing? What sounds? What sensations? What intuitions? What drives? What insights? What is the Being that you are experiencing right now?

The more we bring our focus into the present moment and onto our actual experience (as opposed to focusing on our thoughts), the more we experience the joy and contentment of the spiritual being that we are. This that we are is having a wonderful time having this adventure we call life. It embraces all of it—every experience. When we come into the Now, we experience the peace, joy, contentment, wisdom, patience, kindness, and strength of our true nature. At our core, we are all loving and joyous beings! It is only identification with the egoic mind that makes us feel and act otherwise. The only thing that interferes with the experience of Essence is absorption in thought. Imagine that! The egoic mind is the only thing that interferes with living more lovingly and more at peace with ourselves and the world. We are all beautiful and amazing creations!

My intention is to help you see the truth about your ego and the egoic mind so that you can more easily and more consistently experience who you really are. Fulfillment and true happiness is found by dropping out of our ego and egoic mind (the false self) into the Now—into the experience of Essence. That is what we are about here. The practices, explorations, video, and guided meditation offered in this lesson are a very important part of this discovery. Please give yourself fully to them this week. Sending all love and blessings…

Definition of Terms

The Now: The Now is defined most simply as the present moment. Of course, the present moment is all that exists, since the past and future are simply thoughts about the past and the future. But because we are programmed to pay attention to our thoughts, we often fail to notice what is actually going on now. Most people live in a mental world. When we drop out of this mental world into the Now, we experience a depth, a richness, and a joy and peace that feel sacred. This is the experience of our true self, or Essence. So, when we talk about being in the Now, we are also talking about this experience of Essence.

The ego: The ego is the idea of who we are (not who we really are) that is created by thoughts about ourselves: “I am fat, tall, a father, a hard worker, a musician, not good enough.” These thoughts create the false self, the sense of who we are as an individual. The ego is also a primitive aspect of the mind related to survival and the storehouse of conditioned ideas and beliefs.

The egoic mind: The egoic mind is the aspect of the mind that reflects and is driven by the ego. It is the voice in our head that chats with us and chatters on. It is the ongoing mental commentary that we think of as our thoughts. The egoic mind is different from the functional or practical aspect of the mind that we use to read, learn, calculate, analyze, and so forth. The functional mind doesn’t speak to us but is a tool we use when engaged in tasks that require us to think.

Conditioning: Our conditioning is comprised of beliefs, opinions, judgments, “shoulds,” and any number of other ideas that belong to our psychological makeup, most of which we acquired from other people, particularly from those who raised us, from our culture, and from what we have experienced and concluded about life. This conditioning affects what we like and don’t like and how we see and react to the world, and we often respond unconsciously to it without realizing we have a choice.

Essence: Essence is who we really are, the divine Self that is living this life through us. It is our essential goodness. We are actually spiritual beings playing at being human beings.

Practices: To be done throughout the week:

1. Practice being aware of your thoughts. Where do thoughts come from? Thoughts arise out of nowhere. Just because a thought is happening in your own head doesn’t mean it is any more true than a thought that arises in someone else’s head. What is arising in your mind right now? Where did it come from? Someone? Something you read? Something you were taught? A TV commercial? Is it true? Is it wise? Is it useful in this moment? Is it helpful or destructive? How necessary are most of your thoughts? Do you need them to function? Do they help you function better or not? How do they make you feel?

2. Notice how uninterested the mind is in the present moment. It’s fascinated with the past and the future, and it likes to evaluate the present, but the mind finds nothing of interest in the actual experience of the moment. Notice this. Notice how persistently your mind makes suggestions for thinking about something or doing something other than just being in the moment and responding to whatever is coming out of the moment. The mind has a job to do, and that job is to keep you out of the Now. How does your mind attempt to keep you out of the moment? Which tactics are the most successful at getting you to turn away from the Now? A memory? A fantasy? A desire? A fear? A should? A judgment? A thought about food, sex, time, imperfection, cleanliness, being successful, or how you look? How long do you actually stay in the Now before you go unconscious and rejoin the egoic mind?

3. Notice how much you like to be involved with the egoic mind and with thoughts about yourself and how your life is going. What wants to think is the ego, the false self; and what is capable of being aware of thoughts and of the desire to think is Essence. Whenever you are having the experience of thinking or wanting to think, it’s also possible to realize that the Noticer (Essence) is perfectly content with just noticing whatever is arising in the moment and responding to that without a lot of thought.

Explorations: Do just one of these explorations, or inquiries, a day.

1. Take some time to examine what you are referring to when you think the thought “I.” Try to find the I you’re referring to when you’re thinking about yourself. Can you locate it anywhere? You may point to your body when you say “I,” but the I isn’t just the body is it? Does the I reside in the body? If it resides in the body, what is it that’s aware of your body and your thoughts and even able to contemplate this question? Could that awareness be who you really are? Is awareness—consciousness—limited to the body or the mind? What if you were that awareness, and you were just pretending to be attached to a particular body-mind for the experience it provides consciousness? Who would you be then?

The real you is not your body, your mind, your personality, or any of the things you call yourself. What are such labels, after all? They are just ideas, concepts. Are you an idea, or are you what is aware of the ideas, labels, thoughts, desires, and feelings of a particular body-mind?

2. What are you aware of right now? If you are aware of a thought, ask: “Who or what is aware of this thought?” If you are aware of a feeling, ask: “Who or what is aware of this feeling?” If you are aware of a sensation, ask: “Who or what is aware of this sensation?” Take sufficient time with each of these questions to allow yourself to experience that which is aware of a thought, feeling, or sensation. The real you is what is aware of every thought, feeling, sound, sensation, intuition, urge, and insight—everything you are aware of. You are that which is experiencing this life, and That has no gender, age, past, future, or any other specific definition, but is pure Awareness, Consciousness. Who is it that is aware of the thoughts that define you? Is it the character you seem to be, or is there something else here that is character-less, that is just purely experiencing life, without ideas about liking or disliking, having or not having, wanting or not wanting?

3. Get a pencil and paper, and jot down a description of the character that your mind describes as you. What characteristics and qualities belong to that character? What does that character look like? How does that character behave? How does it feel much of the time? What are its beliefs? How does it see itself in relationship to others and to the world? This is the character you are playing, but it isn’t who you really are. You are what is able to contemplate this character.

For more information visit How to Quiet the Mind On-Line Course

Step III: Our Decision To Rely vs. Defy

Faith: From Here to There and Back Again


Step III: We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God." - The Higher Power of our understanding.

Step III: We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of a Higher Power of our understanding  (*paraphrased from original Step Text). Some will say I have no right to change the text, but I’ve done so to convey contemporary meaning which seems to me held in consensus as we mutually respect each others right to choose how we recognize our Higher Power, in a form that we understand.

 Love Will Find a Way – Lionel Ritchie

In Step III, we choose to make a decision: to trust – to follow faith by selecting reliance as opposed to defiance. This is a leap beyond our rational minds. Though we act with sincerity and our best intentions, sporadic temptation to return to self-assurance brings doubt and reticence to our new conviction. Shattering may occur, especially if our  resolution rely on faith fractures when lost through the perception of unanswered prayers.                                            images

Prayer is a risky business when its intent is to beseech specific favor for ourselves i.e.~

We might say: “I am asking because I truly need these things, this situation, this action by another person, or a sign – a definite signal clearly discernible of my choosing. Send me an audible response I can sense in the physical plain, a message of support, approval or granting.”  Our request is the met with silence.

Its plain that in such a request we have turned to playing the director once again.

WITH SUCH MOTIVATION in our self-centered expectation, failure is likely to be our result – this, according to our 12 Step literature of ages.

BUT —- what about the bible’s saying in Matthew 21:22 – Everything that you will ask in prayer and believe, you will receive.” whatever it be, that you ask for in your prayers, if you have faith, you shall obtain.”

So is it wrong then to ask for your own specific desires, having faith that they will be provided for? Hmmmmm, definite food for thought there!

Success seems  more a likelihood when faith is placed in the provision of our strength; in the courage to overcome or to adapt to life’s circumstances; by the arrival of caring in unspecified ways not immediately defined or perceptible in the physical plane,… in a sense of the existence of a universal forbearance by the spirit of love. When focused on this as our boon — with repetition and sincerity,……………….we will receive answers,………..even when they come to us with thundering silence.

In the beauty and presence of the spirit of nature, we sense our answers in humility.

When Abraham Lincoln was asked: “Why do you pray Sir”? His response was: “Because I have nowhere else to go.”


Faith, when examined as to its nature will often bring us the possibility of doubt, yet that doubt’s resolution –  sometimes jagged and protracted – often ends-up in fortifying our trust as we find an understanding.

Phillip Seymour Hoffman/Meryl Streep in “Doubt”

Our decision of faith to find trust cannot be born without the practice of patience. Patience both demonstrates and provides avenues for our faith’s validity.

When you consider the qualification or second half of Step III: “as we understand him” you may come – as have I –  to realize that consciousness is more often a process of evolving awareness than an event. One filled with moments of serious questions and wonder. Understanding comes through frequently returning to our original point of awareness – a spiritual sense of assurance and trust – perhaps provided later by manifestations in some level of emotion as opposed to a stunning, epiphany: a flashing perception of the presence of a deity or being. The concept of God means all things to all peoples and the wisdom of our 12 Step broad acceptance through choi8ce in perception fits that idea.

Understanding rarely comes as an instant awareness of the indescribable power of good dedicated towards our desires, situational outcome or material fulfillment, but more often in a humble awe of the ultimate order of that in which we place our trust; that in which we desire to turn over our will and lives direction. Our understanding may more likely come in a sense of joy, found in the benevolent forces of the universe, so often perceived in the beauty and power of nature. We commonly agree, none of us are ever going to be able in describing infinite power in finite terms. 1235905_445906352206945_1286165329_n

So this, once again, is a process not an event and likely be so all of our lives. In this simple lesson that has for ages preceded thoughts such as these:

“More will be revealed”

That statement captures the essence of realistic expectations “by our understanding.”

We all agree on this one thing, that as to our addictions – behavioral, drug and alcohol – we’re better off to try turning our will over to new management., wherever we may find its power. This is largely because our own self-reliance made a mess of our prior decisions, It was made clear by its having abandoned us over and over again as we tried to find that power to somehow, anyhow, stop our sickened dependence,…… and failed. We were out of control and projecting our fate to faith is a better choice then our own lacking resolve.

You’ll Never Walk Alone – Carousel 1945

feel like reading about a little faith in action? You’ll find 18 page turning stories of “Phoenix-Like Flight” from the embers of addiction and alcoholism in my awarded illustrated book:

Tales From the Center of the Herd – “Once a Zebra, Always a Zebra”

When you’ve seen it, here’s the original awarded daily affirmations that’s read in 5 different countries around the globe:

“Living the 12 Steps of Recovery – One Day at a Time”

*POST SCRIPT: If you’ve come back to read this piece you may have noticed that it has now been edited about 6 times. Why? Because as one of my favorite writer’s (MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell) says: “These are the rewrites”.  I aspire to clarity as a 12 Step messenger and often find, that when I’ve had awhile to think it over,….. I need to make a “do-over” for better understanding :). 3/29/14

St. Pat’s 2014: The Ragin o’ the Green

Jacquie Lawson

17 March 2014

Dear Friends o’ the Blog~

Author Arthur Messenger has sent you a Jacquie Lawson St. Patty’s Day e-card. If you haven’t heard of us, you’ll be pleasantly surprised! Our e-cards are known for their artistry and gentle humor.

If you’d like to reply to the sender, simply click “Send a Reply” at the bottom of the card. And if you enjoy this e-card, you can learn more about us here.

With best wishes from us all,
Jacquie Lawson and team.

Jacquie Lawson

Now that we’ve had that wee bit of an Irish St. Patty’s Day Greetin’, how about settlin’ the mood for “The Ragin o’ the Green” with a torrent of River Dancin?  “Faith and Begorrah” sure and we’ve even got the link device fixed ( or learned how to use it – ‘he-heh” ). Just click on the blue text next and set it up in a separate window if yee be wantin’ to use it for background ambiance!

Irish Step Dancin’ in Its Finest Hour

St. Patrick drives the Snakes From Ireland ( things like this can happen after several pints of Guiness and a fifth or two of Bushmill's )

St. Patrick drives the Snakes From Ireland ( things like this can happen after several pints of Guiness and a fifth or two of Bushmill’s )

Did St. Patrick Really Drive Snakes Out of Ireland?

(Thanks and a tip of the green bowler to National Geo – my source)belfry-tammany-mickey_green

According to legend, the patron saint of Ireland chased the slithering reptiles into the sea after they began attacking him during a 40-day fast he undertook on top of a hill. (Related: “St. Patrick’s Day: Facts, Myths, and Traditions.”)

Pagans: The Metaphorical Snakes

Well unless St. Patrick couldn’t tell a snake from a lizard, ( and Gawd knows we certainly couldn’t after one of our 3-4 day drinkin’ and druggin’ runs) where does the legend come from?

Scholars suggest the tale is allegorical. Serpents are symbols of evil in the Judeo-Christian tradition—the Bible, for example, portrays a snake as the hissing agent of Adam and Eve’s fall from grace. (How much do you know about St. Patrick’s Day? Take our quiz.)    397513_10203352577277691_530116869_n

The reptiles were also linked to heathen practices—so St. Patrick’s dramatic act of snake eradication can be seen as a metaphor for his Christianizing influence. Removin “the Divil” from immortal souls and the like!

We in the world of Recovery know that the metaphorical Adam and Eve context can be seen alongside our booze, drugs, or behavioral addictions, having a remarkable similarity. Like the “First Human Couple”, we fell prey to the lure of escapism and lofty euphoria, of great pleasure and amazingly imagined insight; the promise to repress all our sadness, anger, fears and bewilderment with one more drink or dose. Then, we were all bitten with the bitter truth. It’s nothing more than venom, and for us Recovery is the antidote.

As green is the color most commonly associated with St. Patrick’s Day and for the transition between Winter and Spring in the coming few days, today it can be our symbol, our color of phoenix-like ascent from the hot-ash of active addiction to the spring of life renewed without our old slavery of addiction, metamorphosized in our recovery.

“We just don’t drink or use no matter what”


Them’s the rules for our continued chance at a somewhat normal life. “to be sure lads and lasses, there’ll be a day or two when the Banshees will howl but there’s safety in numbers and as do all others who show their zebra-like stripes,, we take it “From the Center of the Herd” 


But now “commence au festivale” of St. Patty’s Day! Let’s all be grateful for our lives in recovery, dancin and shavin off the succulent slices of Corned Beef and Cabbage, warming our hearts with hugs and smiles as we promenade through the day, clean – sober and proud of it. Out with it then and Darby O’Gill with The Fox Hunt Chase

Victimhood: No Country for Real Recovery



Every now and then I bring you the work of my mentors at You can sign up for your own daily inspirations at the site for FREE. Thanks to Victoria, they have been my spiritual guide for seven years. Here, as usual, they speak of mindfulness and finding life in the present in an exercise that all of us could benefit by, even if you only do it 3 times a day for 5 minutes. You have time. So do I. Time for peace.


A little video for us all – to illustrate a concept in slowing down and being in the ~present~

Snail’s Pace


March 15, 2014
Stop Being a Victim, Become a Creator
From Stop Being a Victim, Become a Creator On-line Course

by Isha Judd

The following is an excerpt from the “Stop Being a Victim, Become a Creator” on-line course. If you would like to enroll in the course, click here.

Living in the Present Moment

We’ve all heard it, but how often do we actually do it? Present moment awareness is fundamental if we wish to evolve as human beings, for the present is the only place where we can truly connect with ourselves, with the inner experience of peace and fulfillment that I call “Love-Consciousness”.

Love-consciousness is the most natural thing in the world. It is the unconditional love within all beings, an experience that keeps expanding when we dive deep within ourselves. It is not a strange or ethereal experience but something very concrete and natural; you have probably experienced it before in moments of your life — maybe while spending time with a baby, expressing yourself creatively, watching the sun set, or meditating.

Love-consciousness lives in the present moment, so stop wandering off into the past and future — they’ve had quite enough of your time already, thank you. It’s time to give the here and now — the present, where life is really happening — a bit of sorely needed attention.

We all know we need to be present, but how? At times, we remember to be fully present, but worry and regret, distraction and obsession have become so customary for us that we soon wander off again. Today we are going to learn a powerful tool that will help create a new habit: the habit of being present, anchored deeply within ourselves. Then we can begin to live our lives from an inner space of peace and stability, to act and respond to the challenges of the day with joy, compassion and intuition, instead of getting lost in the doing.

Praise love for this moment in its perfection.

Let’s practice this facet now, for 20 minutes. Here’s how:

1. Sit comfortably and close your eyes. Allow any thoughts that come to mind to gently pass. Don’t seek to stop your thoughts; don’t try to enter a state of no-mind. Instead, just allow whatever comes to happen naturally.

2. Say, in your mind, this thought: Praise love for this moment in its perfection. Think it without any effort, the same way you might think any other thought, without concentrating or even trying to understand its meaning.

3. At the same time that you think this facet, put your attention deep in the area of your heart.

4. After thinking the facet, leave a space, a pause. After a few moments, repeat the thought and again leave a space.

5. Continue in this way for about twenty minutes. You can glance at your watch or a clock to check the time.

Don’t think the facet over and over again nonstop as you would a mantra — always leave a space of a few seconds between each repetition. You may experience peace and silence during this gap, but it is also possible that you will have thoughts. Sometimes you may forget the facet, change some of the words, or stray from the point of attention. If this happens, as soon as you realize it, simply go back to thinking the facet correctly. All of this is perfectly normal and natural. Just remember: when you realize that you are not thinking the facet, choose to think it again. Let’s close our eyes now, and practice for 20 minutes.

When You Have Finished…

In order to benefit from the full power of this facet, it is necessary to commit to regular practice. If we join a gym but never go, we do not get fitter. In the same way, if we do not practice the facets, they do not work. Ideally, practice for an hour a day with the eyes closed. You can divide this hour into two blocks of half an hour or three blocks of twenty minutes. The most important thing is that you do it. If on some days, you can’t do an hour, a shorter time is better than nothing.

We refer to practicing the facet as unifying. There are two ways to unify: with eyes open and with eyes closed.

Keeping the eyes closed is the most profound way to unify, as it takes you deep into the experience of love-consciousness.

You can think this facet with your eyes open whenever you want, in any situation. For maximum results, think it every time you remember — while you are brushing your teeth, exercising at the gym, watching TV, or waiting in line at the bank. Every time you use the facet, you are bringing your attention completely into the present moment and connecting with love-consciousness. When you are present in the moment, the projections and fears clouding your window of perception begin to dissolve. You start to see with new eyes.

Reclaim the Innocence of Childhood

Children have the upper hand over us adults in the happiness department — they approach everything as if it were the first time, completely unfettered by what has come before. They see magic and wonder everywhere they look.

Can you imagine how much of a relief it would be to return to that state?

When I was a child, I just was. I wasn’t observing myself or measuring the reactions of those around me; I wasn’t trying to manipulate, seduce, or control in any way; just to be myself was enough. I had no concept of what it was to be ridiculous, or to be serious: if I was happy, I laughed; if I was sad, I cried. The bottom line: I didn’t question my actions. I just was. I was the beingness, being. Carrying the accumulated baggage of adulthood, with its opinions, fears, and misguided perceptions, we have lost this spontaneity.

As you go about your daily life, continually shake the Etch A Sketch of your mind and see things as a child would — without expectations or recriminations. Try to see each person afresh. When the homeless person comes to ask for a coin, give him a smile instead of your usual rebuttal — maybe that was all he ever really wanted. When your tedious mother-in-law calls on the phone, don’t answer anticipating her reprimands and complaints. When your boss calls you into her office, don’t automatically expect her to chastise you — maybe she’ll give you a raise! We are always on guard, expecting that something is wrong. Instead, adopt the emptiness and spontaneous innocence of a child; open yourself up to receive with joy.

For more information visit Stop Being a Victim, Become a Creator On-line Course


Book Signing Event: March 7th and 8th



March 7th and 8th, at the Spokane Mirabeau Park Hotel in Spokane Valley Wa., Awarded Author Arthur Messenger will be a featured guest, signing both of his books during the Northwest Pockets of Enthusiasm Recovery Event.

Stop by and meet the author as well as enter the drawing for a free volume. You can also get your own signed, original softbound copy of either.

New Book Cover

“Amen, and Alright Alright Alright”!

Best Actor

Best Actor

Matthew Mcconaughey

received the Best Actor Award

last night at the Academy Awards.

His acceptance speech will go down

in the annals of the show’s history as one

to be remembered for all time; an inspiration

for its meaning to all of us in recovery of

courage and faith.                                                                            


His reception speech will go down in the annals of their history, likely to be shown over and over again as an inspiration to all who will follow him. To those of us living in a life of recovery, this glorious manifesto of faith and recognition of “his understanding” will fortify our intent to live clean and sober and to seek emotional aka spiritual balance.

There is little more to be said that he did not say himself, and so here is his speech, one that I hope will inspire you as much as it did me with its gravity.

He has the spirituality that I want. This will go down as an epic acceptance speech and a glorious example of Humility; an inspiration to all who peruse the path and purpose of recovery-
“Amen and Alright Alright Alright”!