Thursday, 21 April 2011

Words are symbols of symbols, twice removed from reality

"Do not let any prejudice you may have against spiritual terms deter you from honestly asking yourself what they mean to you." (47:0, 'Alcoholics Anonymous')

'God' is a word. The word is a signpost to a concept. The concept is the (poor) reflection in my mind of the reality.

The reality is this: I used to drink even when it was against all my best interests and I hated what it did to me and where it took me. Now I do not. I did not have that power. Now I have that power.

The power is real.

And the reality of that power is replicated endlessly in those around me.

The concept of that power, in my mind, I must remember, is a limited reflection.

And the word is just a word. A signpost.

People get bothered by the 'he' 'thing'. I tell them to learn Estonian and read the Big Book in Estonian, because Estonian does not make a distinction, grammatically, between male and female. There is a single word for 'he'/'she'/'it'. 'He' is not meant to denote male attributes. It is a grammatical convenience.

If I have a problem with this, the problem is never, really, with the word.

The problem usually relates to the concept in my mind of the power.

I never object, really, to other people's concepts, for those concepts are in their minds.

I can object to another person's concept only if that concept is in MY mind. It is not, then, their concept, but my concept. But even the word 'my' must be questioned, here.

If I have a problem with 'my' (i.e. a borrowed) 'concept' (i.e. limited reflection) of God, I need to be willing to let go of the failed, limited concept and stop blaming the world for the failed, limited concept in my mind. It may have come from the world, but I am the one who has taken it to heart and adopted it as the truth, even whilst rejecting it. It is a simple error. No more. It's like stepping in something on the street. I wash it off and move on.

AA may well be moving towards a more 'secular' answer to alcoholism. I guess this means that some people can get well without having to remove the blocks to access the power as they already have access to the power in the first place and are simply lacking basic instructions.

In other words, AA may be moving towards a situation where you tell people 'don't drink' and they don't, you tell people 'be selfless' and they are, you tell people 'don't worry' and they don't.

My overwhelming experience is that almost no one in AA can follow those instructions, consistently.

Lack of power is the problem, not lack of instructions, lack of motivation, etc.

The concept that is the reflection in my mind of the power is secondary.

The word I use for the concept is tertiary.

It is the power that matters.

And what blocks me from the power is self. Not me. Self. Concern with image. With want. With need. With desire. With prejudice. With memory. With projection. With my selective way of thinking. None of those is who I am. Yet remove the blocks, and power shows up, combined with a consciousness of that power.

"When many hundreds of people are able to say that the consciousness of the Presence of God is today the most important fact of their lives, they present a powerful reason why one should have faith." (51:0, 'Alcoholics Anonymous')

If you can remove these blocks as an act of the will, my hat is off to you!

God can and will, however, if sought. My hat is off to Him.

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