Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Revisiting the Steps

'During my fifth year, as a part of my annual personal inventory, I realized that I had not succeeded in developing a spiritual depth in my program.' ('Alcoholics Anonymous', Page 542)

There are alcoholics, whose stories are in the Big Book, who revisit the earlier steps periodically.

My experience is that doing so 'keeps the pipes clear'. Rather than waiting for my life, spiritually, to collapse around me before revisiting the steps, as I see happen to so many people, I take pre-emptive action. In principle, daily inventory and so on should be sufficient. In practice, my annual revisiting of the first nine steps invariably reveals drift that was not picked up in daily inventory, and opens up new avenues of growth spiritually, and in other regards, growth which I had not suspected was available. Having tried persisting in just the last three steps, I now interpret the line 'to practice these principles in all our affairs' to mean practising ALL the steps in all my affairs, not just the principles contained in the last three steps. The last eight years of my recovery have been far richer and far more stable and useful than the previous fifteen, as a result.

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