Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

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Seva
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Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by Seva »

I'm still under the impression that we have been spiritually sick before our first drink and we tried to medicate this with alcohol. However I'm now not to sure given Bills following quote from Language of the Heart:

"Of course, we have since found that these awful conditions of mind and body invariably bring on the third phase of our malady. This is the sickness of the spirit; a sickness for which there must necessarily be a spiritual remedy. We AAs recognize this in the first five words of Step Twelve of the recovery program. Those words are: "Having had a spiritual awakening. . ." Here we name the remedy for our threefold sickness of body, mind, and soul. Here we declare the necessity for that all-important spiritual awakening."

In my opinion he is implying that the mental obsession and physical allergy bring on the Spiritual sickness which I'm assuming means spiritual malady? If this is the case then the line "when the Spiritual Malady is overcome we straighten our mentally and physically" doesn't make sense if Bill is saying the Spiritual Malady is caused by the conditions of mind and body.

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Brock
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Re: Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by Brock »

You do bring up interesting topics, and things like this show a reading of the literature and thirsting for knowledge probably well above what the ‘average’ AA member does. There are some people who say we shouldn’t dig this deeply in questioning the program, just trust and live by the steps, I am not one of those people. As you point out Bill does contradict himself in these two statements, he was just a stockbroker trying to provide all the answers to spirituality and alcoholism, and in this case tied himself up a bit.

I can’t think that we tied to medicate our lack of spirituality with alcohol, there are nuns and priests and other supposedly spiritually fit people who developed alcoholism. I feel that the majority of people just developed it, because as the book suggests they have this gene or allergy which causes an inability to stop after a few drinks.

I do think active alcoholism pushes the average person away from spirituality, so whatever our spiritual practice was before drinking is reduced in importance. In spiritual books it is common to see, that people only tend to follow that path seriously after some crappy thing happening in their lives, especially something over which they have no control, serious sickness and alcoholism/addiction to drugs etc. are common ones. Of all the folks going to church every Sunday, probably only a very few might attain the sort of spiritual awakening necessary to have the promises in the literature of serenity & peace under all conditions come true. And to my mind it is important to develop that, so that any thought of a drink is immediately dismissed by the thought of why do I need a drink, I am calm and at peace without it, or at least have the tools to be. It shouldn’t be if I drink I might loose my job or family, it should be I will probably loose this connection to my higher power which keeps me serene and at peace, a much worse thing to loose than family or job.

After doing the steps, the accent should be on spiritual development, the big book is good practice for reading spiritual books, because they are not easy reading and must be studied and pondered on to get any benefit. You will hear some people say I read X & Y book but didn’t get any benefit, that’s like thinking we can just read the big book and problem solved. I am a fan of Eckhart Tolle, and over the last couple of years have read his two best known books over and over just a bit each day, and every time things get clearer and my understanding and peace of mind improve. I have gone off the original point a bit and rambled on as usual, but spirituality is a good topic.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."

tomsteve
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Re: Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by tomsteve »

i dont have to agree with everything bill said.

malady,disease,and sickness all mean the same thing.

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Spirit Flower
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Re: Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by Spirit Flower »

good topic. Which came first? The chicken or the egg?


Actually, quite apart from AA teaching, my personal opinion. My spirit is not and has never been sick. It is my disconnection from it which causes me to feel sick.
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D'oh
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Re: Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by D'oh »

good topic. Which came first? The chicken or the egg?
Yes, they both taste Great Fried.

By the time the Spiritual Malady is addressed in the Steps, The Body DT's not the Cereous) and most of the Mind (at least the Fog) should be well on the Mend.

Mike O
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Re: Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by Mike O »

I think this is a good example of one of the reasons why its not a great idea to try and dissect the programme and it's associated writings too much. A bit of healthy insight is good, of course.

This is about semantics essentially. Bill is not a skilled writer - he is an amateur and he does not always word things well.

The steps appear to work whether or not we understand why.

That'll be tuppence, please :D

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avaneesh912
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Re: Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by avaneesh912 »

Inferences change, we now know more about alcoholism. Why do people even take a drink? Its some form of malady. "A lack of". Some show prominent signs of irritability and restlessness. My father was one of them but he never drank. I wish he did. Perhaps he could have found a solution. For some its subtle. The stories in the big book talks about various circumstances. Bill drank amidst excitement but again due to loneliness. The man of thirty drank because was nervousness. The car salesman drank due to "nervous disposition". Some form of anxiety. Fred I dont know why he drank =biggrin =biggrin =biggrin but he had gone to recover from a bad case of jitters.
Show him the mental twist which leads to the first drink of a spree. We suggest you do this as we have done it in the chapter on alcoholism.(Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

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positrac
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Re: Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by positrac »

Putting faith in the program that it is not perfect and yet it has saved millions of people all over the world. Left to my own devices I will drink myself to death looking for answers to my disease of alcohol. So I keep it simple and I believe that if I don't pick up that drink and I reach out to another member then I have hope for another day sober.
Work hard, stay positive, and get up early. It's the best part of the day.
George Allen, Sr.

tomsteve
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Re: Spiritual sickness brought on by drinking?

Post by tomsteve »

Spirit Flower wrote:
Sun Aug 16, 2020 7:06 pm
good topic. Which came first? The chicken or the egg?
bacon. bacon came first. =biggrin

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