During my recent attending of an AA meeting one night I experienced an insight that I believe is worth sharing. While waiting around for the meeting to start, I noticed the Tweleve Steps posted on the walk. Even though I had seen them many times before, they did appear to me to be different. I seemed to be drawn, compeled to read them again. As I started read each step I started to become present to something extraordinary, if only to me. I started to get what I believe is the true intention or purpose or even the direction of the twelve steps. They have nothing to do with drugs and alcohol. They have nothing to do with making oneself better. They had nothing to do with fixing oneself. They have nothing to do with being a better person. What they have to do with, and the only thing that is of their concern, was being about the path to getting connected to God, to the spirit, or whatever you chose to call that which created us all, nature, and the world. The twelve steps were about what one needs to do, the path to be taken, that which needs to be let go of, that which needs to removed, the barriers and constraints to our connection, to have a spiritual awakening, to experience God. The awakening, I am more convinced now that ever, is to get and be who we really are.
The work of Dan Millman is very powerful for assisting one in transforming their lives. In my work at the Holistic Addiction Treatment Program I introduce all of the clients to “The Way of the Peaceful Warrior” both as a book and movie. Below are listed some of the distinctions that are presented in the movie. After the movie a discussion group is held to process these distinctions and how they may assist the clients in their recovery from drugs and alcohol.
1. Knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge is knowing something and Wisdom is doing it.
2. Highest purpose is for us to be of service to others.
3. “Take out the trash”. Trash the thoughts in your mind that keeps you out of the moment.
4. We are afraid of what is inside. The only place to find what you need is inside you. The experience of fear/being scared is about being empty.
5. Are you paying attention (to your addiction)?
6. What are you holding onto (that keeps you stuck in your addiction)? Who are you without your addiction? Practice of letting go of what you are holding onto that keeps you stuck. Give up your attachments.
7. “Not knowing” is the first principle of a Warrior. Getting this allows one to be and remain teachable, open to learning.
8. There are no ordinary moments. There is always something going on. Pay attention to the present or now.
9. Give up the Good-Bad, Right-Wrong way of thinking about yourself and others.
10. Happiness is about your journey and not the destination.