Category Archives: Get on your feet

Accepting revulsion 2: Life in the looney bin

Miscellaneous notes about accepting bad feelings.

[Second in a series.]

One afternoon some years back, I hooked up with my bud Brian Williard at the Light Street McDonald’s.  We were there for maybe half an hour, and then set out eastbound on Baltimore Street towards the shelters where we stayed.  I stay at one, and he stayed at another about 100 yards farther east.

We walked and talked, and he talked, and he talked, and a lot of what he talked about wasn’t necessarily of much interest to me.  It came to me:  “I’m doing ministry; he needs this.”  Finally, he said, “It’s such a relief to talk to somebody sane.”

Continue reading Accepting revulsion 2: Life in the looney bin

Reasons to seek prosperity

Reasons to seek prosperity

At any given moment, it may help me to have an actual reason to seek prosperity.  As my moods and POV change from day to day, however, a reason that I may have believed in one day, may not be credible the next:  “I’m not feelin’ it.”  So I may do well to have several reasons, different ones of which may be credible on different days. Continue reading Reasons to seek prosperity

The Twelve Steps

THE TWELVE STEPS OF ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS

1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol — that our lives had become unmanageable.

2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.

11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.

12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Copyright A.A. World Services, Inc.

(Originally posted 11/30/13.)
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Alcoholism basics

(A message I sent family on 26 April 2006.)

Disease, or sin?

To the best of my knowledge, the “disease theory of alcoholism” began with Dr. Robert Silkworth, at the time of St. Thomas Hospital in Akron, Ohio, coincident with the beginnings of A.A. “Dr. Bob” referred to the condition as an “allergy”; for whatever reason, these folks’ bodies respond to this substance differently than others’ do.

This theory and its ramifications are, today, largely taken for granted throughout the scientific world. Whatever the disease’s cause, behavioral strategies are needed, too, if the subject is to manage the disease and live a normal life. The same is just as true of diabetes or near-sightedness or hay fever.

The competing view, that drinking problems reflect sin or some kind of moral deficiency, still has its grip on the popular mind. The predicaments that problem drinkers create for themselves and for others, are bad enough in and of themselves without the added burden of this stigma. My late father insisted until his last lucid day, that it was all a question of “will power.” I remember visiting Mom at home sometime prior to 1990, and finding on the bookshelf different books by Hazen G. Werner, an Ohio Methodist bishop whom my father fervently admired, and finding certain passages that my father had marked wherein the author discounted the disease theory and blamed it all instead on, as it were, sin. I shook my head at the untold, needless damage such words do.
Continue reading Alcoholism basics

Don’t Quit! How to Be Happy at a Crappy Job

If at all possible, never, ever, allow yourself to become completely jobless.  My doing that was the worst financial decision I’ve every made in my life.  It was very, very costly.

I don’t know if it’s directly related to how I became homeless, but for sure, I never mean to do it again.

Continue reading Don’t Quit! How to Be Happy at a Crappy Job

Kansas prisoners get the granny treatment

(Originally posted 11/23/13.)

Steve Hartman’s “On the Road” segment for the CBS Evening News, 11/01/13:

Kan. prisoners get the granny treatment

Here is a practical example of how brightening the “divine spark” within people can effect redemption or transformation.

Keep the feeling, change the thought

A basic tenet I’ve maintained here, is that one’s feelings are largely independent of one’s circumstances; and that one can typically choose how to feel, no matter what one’s circumstances are.

Well, maybe not always.

But for sure, feelings come on that one will not like, that have no relationship to anything that’s happened in the real world.  How to deal with them?

Continue reading Keep the feeling, change the thought

My prayer for myself today

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Sunday 2017-02-26

My prayer for myself today was that I “come into a world where my diligence will be rewarded.”  A related new concept, as far as the blog is concerned:  efficacy — the feeling or sense that one can accomplish something.  In question is whether I perceive my world that way now.

It is notable that a background of chaos militates against efficacy, and normally teaches that diligence will not be rewarded, except as it’s expressed in opportunism and predation (See “Can’t resist temptation? …” below.)  A background of, or perceptions of, order, in contrast, teach the exact opposites.

Related future posts (The links won’t work until the posts appear.):
About Edgar Cayce’s dream
Perceptions of order

Related previous post:
Chaos overwhelms the poor
Also related:
Can’t resist temptation? That may not be a bad thing

A snapshot: this moment in my life right now

Thursday 2017-02-23

Some weeks ago, on a Sunday afternoon just after check-in at the mission, I became clairvoyant for a few seconds, and saw many things.

The first insight was that many things I’ve been saying for a long, long time — teachings, theories, hypotheses — are far more factual than I’d ever supposed.

The last thing that came displeased me.  It said, “God has a purpose for my being [at the shelter], and I’ll never get away until it’s accomplished.

What progress I have made since then has come from acting on the “things I’ve been saying for a long, long time.”  The Way of Peace was composed in 2010; I don’t know whether I’ve yet posted here all that was composed at time; I’m know there’s still a lot that  I have yet to post; but it’s the basic teachings in there, including those already set forth, that I’ve been called to act on.

Yesterday afternoon on the walk back to the shelter, I was using — for the first time in months — techniques perhaps first set forth in “Paying my dues …,” first published in 2013.

The teaching set forth in “Simple,” I have been working to live out.  I found the quotation in an e-mail I sent various people in 2007, telling them it epitomized what I believed Jesus actually taught.

Walking my talk, or learning to:  that may be what’s keeping me at the shelter.  Once I’m walking my talk enough, I may be free.

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