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Old 11-18-2007, 07:09 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Entire Psychic Change

“Men and women drink essentially because they like the affect produced by alcohol. The sensation is so elusive that, while they admit it is injurious, they cannot after a time differentiate the true from the false. To them, their alcoholic life seems the only normal one. They are restless, irritable and discontented, unless they can again experience the sense of ease and comfort which comes at once by taking a few drinks-drinks which they see others taking with impunity. After they have succumbed to the desire again, as so many people do, and the phenomenon of craving develops, they pass through the well-known stages of a spree, emerging remorseful, with a firm resolution not to drink again. This is repeated over and over, and unless this person can experience an entire psychic change there is very little hope of his recovery.”

Dr. Silkworth, "A Doctor's Opinion"

Without the experience of a psychic change there is little hope of recovery.
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Old 11-18-2007, 12:15 PM   #2 (permalink)
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So what do I have to do to have that?


"To show other alcoholics precisley how we have recovered is the main purpose of this book."

Alcoholics Anonymous Foreward to First Edition pg xiii


"It is the purpose of this book to answer such questions specifically."

Alcoholics Anonymous pg. 20
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Old 11-18-2007, 01:49 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps....
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Old 11-19-2007, 04:26 AM   #4 (permalink)
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"Despite the living example of my friend there remained in me the vestiges of my old prejudice. The word God still aroused a certain antipathy. When the thought expressed that there might be a God personal to me this feeling was intensified. I didn't like the idea. I could go for such conceptions as Creative Intelligence, Universal Mind or Spirit of Nature but I resisted the thought of a Czar of the Heavens, however loving His sway might be. I have since talked with scores of men who felt the same way.

My friend suggested what then seemed a novel idea. He said, "Why don't you choose your own conception of God?" That statement hit me hard. It melted the icy intellectual mountain in whose shadow I had lived and shivered many years. I stood in the sunlight at last. It was only a matter of being willing to believe in a power greater than myself. Nothing more was required of me to make my beginning. I saw that growth could start from that point. Upon a foundation of complete willingness I might build what I saw in my friend. Would I have it? Of course I would!

Thus was I convinced that God is concerned with us humans when we want Him enough. At long last I saw, I felt, I believed. Scales of pride and prejudice fell from my eyes. A new world came into view."

Last edited by RufusACanal; 11-19-2007 at 04:28 AM. Reason: To be continued...
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Old 11-19-2007, 07:38 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I didn't understand the psychic change for the longest time. I read about it in the Big Book. On an intellectual level, I understood that it was equal to a spiritual awakening, but other than my level of desire to lead a sober and purposeful life, I had no idea how I could know if I had, in fact, gone through a psychic change.

Then I started to see myself respond differently to all manner of things around me. Strange things. The most profound change was that my mind didn't immediately go to a drink when confronted with difficulty (or joy, or sadness, or anger). But other things, too -- seeing beyond my own selfishness to how my actions might affect others, being able to tell the difference between reasons and excuses, not always having to be right! -- other things that were foreign to the drinking Sug were becoming the new norm, and I remember puzzling over it one day until someone pointed out to me that I had had a psychic change. A woman, non-alcoholic, said to me one day, "I know you're the woman I knew 10 years ago. You look the same, but you don't at all act the same." So I know that it's not "all in my head."

On Saturday, I was at a Gratitude Dinner with about fifty other people, all sober. I looked around the room, a church fellowship hall, and wondered -- if someone were to come in off the street and they were told who we were, would they believe it? Pretty amusing -- and beautiful.

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Old 11-19-2007, 07:51 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I talked on the phone Saturday night to my ex husband's wife. We used to yell and scream at one another - I was usually the one to provoke a fight.
We had a great conversation, and she actually said I was 'mellow' - how's that for a psychic change?
We talk about the kids and can commiserate together that her husband (my ex) didn't get promoted at work. I feel zero hostility toward him
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Old 11-19-2007, 08:00 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Entire Psychic Change
For this alkie I came to understand that the "Pyschic Change" and the "Spiritual Awakening" were two different things. My Spiritual Awakening started when I was sitting in the back parking lot of the Hollywood Bowl Park, drinking Thunderbyrd Wine and feeling like it was coming out of every poor of my body as fast as I put it in, and it was then I knew I was going to die if I continued, and I was going to die if I tried to stop, but somehow knew I wanted to die trying to get sober. That was 6/7/81. I put the cap back on the quart.

The awakening was complete when the following evening I awoke on the medical floor (not psych ward) of Olive View Hospital to find out I had died and the TOD was on my medical chart. That was my Spiritual Awakening. It was also the beginning of a new Sober life that continues to this day.

I believe my Psychic Change is still ongoing, lol. It started the day I asked Bev D to be my sponsor and got Hugh D also. With their 'guidance, patience, and unconditional love' I was able to work the steps and then learn how to LIVE the steps.

"God" was a problem for me for about 2 minutes until it was explained that right then all I needed was a "Power Greater Than Myself" and was given as examples, the Giant Red Woods, The Ocean, The Home Group as a whole, etc etc.............So, being a good Alkie, I choose a Harley Davidson Motorcycle for my whole first year sober,and yes it is funny today, but the important thing for me is IT WORKED. Today I have my own HP, the same one for many years and am very comfortable with my Native American side and the Native American teachings.

Yes, I was very sick. But I was WILLING, and I think WILLINGNESS is a big part of Psychic Change. This does not mean I didn't kick and scream and dig in my heels at times, lol and Bev and Hugh would let me 'wallow' for a bit, then one or the other with one of their gut hitting comments would snap me out of it.

I have recovered from a hopeless state of mind and body by slowly working on ME. I continue to grow and change, and hope to do so until the day I die.

I look back at that street wise, very angry, sick alkie gal, with a chip on her shoulder the size of a 2 x 4, that walked through the doors of AA, and she is nowhere to be found anymore. I read my journals from those early months and realize just how far gone I was.

I truly believe that Psychic Change comes as we practice new behaviors over and over and over and the new behaviors slowly make new pathways and erase old behaviors.

Those first 100 certainly didn't have all the 'jargon' that psych docs and therapists today have, but they had found a way that DID WORK and they SHARED it and PASSED IT ON, and today............................................. .........IT STILL WORKS!!!!!

It's a wonderful journey!!!!! Sometimes crazy and chaotic and sometimes smooth and serene.

Whatever you do, DON'T MISS IT.

J M H O from my own ES&H

Love and hugs,
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Old 11-19-2007, 01:58 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Over the years, I have asked folks; do you know what the psychic change is? Have you experienced it? The pursuit of the answer was overwhelming and unobtainable or at least that was my take; maybe it was as real as the resurrection. I just knew that if I solved the mystery of the psychic change, the God thing would be a pushover in comparison.

It has taken years for me to finally understand that the answer to a psychic change is not tangible and patent nor simple; let me rephrase, I took years to surrender. Examples of the change are present in my life now; the desire to drink is gone, thievery is gone, lying is gone, thinking less of others is gone. In the past, I wanted a simple answer, a rational answer and I always wanted it, now. It surely did not come that way at all. In fact the change came from surrendering, over and over. Remember the feeling of not having to tell a lie.

Two words that are sorely misunderstood in AA and in the world are Humility and Surrender. Both of these ideals provide a pathway to peace that is the freedom mentioned over and over by our Sponsors, in our literature and in our meetings. Many mistake humility with its cousin and regard surrender as the quickest avenue to something unspeakable. How easy to understand that if I think less of myself and no longer have the need to be right what a burden is lifted and how free I have become?

To be continued…
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Old 11-19-2007, 02:14 PM   #9 (permalink)
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A new mind.
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Old 11-20-2007, 04:47 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Yes, a new mind and a new life. When I leave the chains that bind me; self centeredness, selfishness, I leave behind the need to be right or for that matter the need to be better than you for no other good reason. This is not nirvana, it is freedom from constant emotional turmoil. Some folks will not get this, it is not easy with an Alcoholic mind, but it can be accomplished.

Last edited by RufusACanal; 11-20-2007 at 04:48 AM. Reason: To be continued...
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Old 11-21-2007, 05:19 AM   #11 (permalink)
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"In the process of surrender which the alcoholic necessarily undergoes before his alcoholism can be arrested, the part of the personality which must surrender is the inflated Ego. This aspect of personality was identified as immature traits carried over from infancy into adulthood, specifically, a feeling of omnipotence, inability to tolerate frustration, and excessive drive, exhibited in the need to do all things precipitously. The manner in which surrender affects the Ego was discussed and illustrated briefly from clinical experience.

The object of therapy is to permanently replace the old Ego and its activity."

THE EGO FACTORS
IN SURRENDER IN ALCOHOLISM
Harry M. Tiebout, M.D.


Hence the need for a complete psychic change. When asked by a Sponsee if he would find God after working the steps I told him no, God had already found him, but if he wanted to realize what God had done in his life he should stay sober long enough to finish the rest of the Steps to see the results. Psychic changes, spiritual awakenings and miracles happen; usually they take a large measure of hard work, commitment, faith in the unseen and not drinking again. How can you expect to be taken seriously in life if you can not work the First Step successful on a daily basis.

To be continued...

Last edited by RufusACanal; 11-21-2007 at 05:34 AM.
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