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|01-08-2011, 08:51 PM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Gig Harbor, WA
Three Kinds of Prayer
When I was new I had and old conception of God no to kind to say the least as if there was one things would have not happen to me as they did. I had the Fox Hole Prayer get me out of this one and I will never do it again. Help I would cry and that was all I did so my Prayer was alwasy a help Prayer.
When I saw on the wall the 11 step it seemed surreal to me and not something I could do.
One day I was takling with my sponsor and told him of where I was at with the God thing and said bluntly I did not have one so he kindly said I could borrow his Higher Power if I choose. Well his life was much better than mine and I gave it a shot. So I asked for help daily.
Later on I had changed and started to listen more than rant. I was listening to a tape and the speaker talk about three kinds of paryers 1. God Help me, 2, God Show me and thirdly God Use Me.
So this caused me to look at the Circle and Triangle and its three sides of Recovery, Service and Unity. That the Three types of Prayer are imbedded in our three legacies. For God Helping me in my recovery showing others that it can happen, for God in being a part of the the fellowship than apart from it and in service where I can be of service viced being served.
So for step 11 as I incorporated this into my daily life these types of payers I became more quieter and mediatation became and easier time for me.
Just a thought and curious how others are involved in Prayers of ther choice and meditation which I call medication for a mind like mine.
|01-09-2011, 06:55 AM||#2 (permalink)|
12-Step Recovered Alcoholic
Join Date: May 2010
I always thought of meditation in the eastern sense of the work....sitting quitely, eyes closed, focusing on breathing, clearing my mind. I do that, (not often enough) for sure......but the BB talks about meditation in a completely different way on p86 - 88.
The way Bill wrote about it, meditation was more of a reviewing of our day in the evening and the planning of our day in the morning (asking for our HP's guidance) so that we can be of service to God. An asking for inspiration, freedom from self-will, and prayers for the wisdom to pause when doubtful and asking for the right thought or action.
Two different versions of meditation, huh? My version, and the BB version.
I don't know how I missed the BB version.......perhaps I just liked mine better (without, of course, even really trying the BB way) but I was feeling like I was missing something in life. Recovery has taught me when I feel like something's off or something's missing.....I better get willing to change - so that's what I did. I kept my version but started practicing the techniques the BB spoke about. Once again, my spiritual eyes opened a little wider and I woke up in some new and interesting areas.
.....just another example of "my version" of working the steps proving to not be as productive as following the instructions laid out in the BB.
For those who haven't tried following the book to a T....... I highly recommend it. You may find some new freedom - like I did.
"We can't solve our problems using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them." - Albert Einstein
/-all BB quotes-1st. Edition-\
|01-09-2011, 09:11 AM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Gig Harbor, WA
That is something, that quote is my favorite as well and Enstien has another saying I like to share "I want to know God's thought ;the rest are details". Yes I agree ther are many was to emtional and spirtual sobriety and the BB has been the gateway for me and my sobriety. Thanks for the reply have a great day unless you have better plans as my sponsor once told me.
|01-11-2011, 06:27 PM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Upstate New York
Hi, emcgir! I noticed your thread here on Sunday and wanted to respond, but this is a big and very important topic for me, and so I've just now managed to find time to maybe even begin to do it justice. Anyway, I'm starting by copying something that I wrote on this forum in July 2008 (that part's in black) and then updating "my progress" or changes/additions since then in purple.
For me prayer takes all kind of forms but basically serves one of two purposes: either I am trying to connect / align my will with HP or I am expressing gratitude/worship/adoration (They all kind of seem the same to me!).
I have a chakra-based meditation that I do....a long version that I do at least once a day and a short version that I do whenever I feel like I need to calm down, reconnect, discern what "the next right thing" is, etc... (For ~ the last six months I've been attending an 11th Step meeting that starts with 15 minutes of silent meditation, which for me is totally awesome because the energy of the group seems to take my meditation to a-whole-nother level. I still almost always -- whether alone or in the group -- start and end any meditation with the chakra work, but over the last couple years what "happens" in-between had really changed insofar as it has become much more spontaneous and pretty much totally disconnected from my rational, often ego-driven, mind. Like when I get to a certain point, whatever is going to present itself for that day just floats up and it can be kinda weird sometimes it'll be like words to a hymn that I'm pretty much unfamiliar with or verses from the Bible -- which is not usually consciously my personal first choice as far as where I go when I'm looking for spiritual inspiration/motivation/guidance -- but I have gotten so that I just go with it because it is always perfectly what I really need to be doing, and, if necessary, I research it later, so my mind can feel like I "get it" on that level, too. And that's actually kind cool because it's always been helpful and is giving me a new/deeper appreciation for a lot of stuff that I had kinda "written off" in the past.)
More traditionally, I do pray the rosary -- not every day -- but at least several times a week. There's several reasons this works for me, even though I am definitely do not consider myself Catholic. First is because my grandmother, who was very spiritual/close to God/whatever you want to call it, was a fanatical rosary prayer, and I have her rosary and I have the sense that it has a lot of energy connected with it. Second, the repetitious nature of the prayers is very centering/meditational for me and seems to occupy my thinking mind just enough so it stays out of my way for the time that I'm doing it. (The rosary thing has actually turned out to be pretty neat tool for connecting spiritually with a lot of the women I know in program. I can't believe how many times rosary-related stuff has come up "coincidentally" with women I've been working with who are struggling with finding a comfortable spiritual practice.)
(Along those lines, pretty much anything that circumvents my rational/thinking mind and takes me out of myself -- like swimming or sex -- can be prayerful for me, because it takes me to a place where I can "hear" HP more easily than I can when my mind is yack-yack-yacking.)
I do also frequently use "The Lord's Prayer" the "Fear Prayer" (also, now, the 3rd and 7th Step prayers) and a couple of other prayers the actual wording of which I really like, just saying them and concentrating on what they mean and where that leads me at the moment. And there is one hymn from my childhood that I sometimes sing (in the car when no one has to hear me!), because it's just a very joyous, worshipful hymn (and the only hymn tune I can remember and carry because I have NO musical ability whatsoever!) and there's something about the vibrational pitch of it that just works for me and makes me feel "right" with HP.
Also, because of my being so intellectual, I do usually have a "topic" I'm working on in relation to my program/recovery/spirituality, and these are usually chosen for me by HP because they just keep coming up over and over in my life in a short period of time until they get my attention, and so then I read on them, talk to people about them, bring them up at meetings, notice how they seem to work in my life and just kind of hold them gently in my mind -- as opposed to like focusing on them like some kind of deranged person or like trying to come up with some kind of "thesis" or final answer about them -- until it feels like I have some kind of resolution or deeper understanding around it and another one presents itself...recent ones have been things like discernment, fear, inner-child issues, pain, etc.....(I've realized at this point that how this actually works is that what I am doing / my part is gathering up all the relevant pieces and then, when I've gotten all of the needed pieces, God suddenly puts them together for me in a way that I never would be able to myself.)
Finally, and this is really not something I do but more like something that happens to me more and more often since I've been in program, sometimes something happens that objectively probably wouldn't seem very special or important but somehow it really is and I am just like overwhelmed with this huge "rush" of gratitude or adoration.....or....I guess I don't really know what to call it , but it is definitely very powerful and very prayerful in the gratitude/worship sense.
3 more things:
1. Starting in the late summer/early Fall of 2009, I've made a serious commitment to becoming willing to and comfortable with praying publicly -- like just being able to spontaneously say a prayer when I am asked to or when the situation seems to warrant it or when I'm working with a sponsee or someone who's struggling just saying: "Can we pray together?" And this might seem like not a very big deal, but I was raised Catholic, and we did not do this kind of thing, unless we were like at mass and were reciting predetermined prayers by rote.....So, this was a very, very big deal for me and also very much related to my being truly comfortable with my spirituality and what that's meaning in my life now and being willing to be as "out and proud" about that as I am about anything else in my life.
2. Kinda related to #1: praying daily with my partner. This was something I'd been wanting to do for awhile, but she was not really in the place spiritually/recovery-wise to do it...and then she wanted to try it and I was pretty surprised to find myself scared to death. And, ultimately, she was the one who made it happen, which, really, is like such a beautiful thing and so precious to me...and there is just truly no way to explain in words the intimacy of this or how much it means to me -- and to her and to us as a couple.
3. Very new development: I guess I'm gonna cal it "contemplative prayer." I've been reading Emmet Fox for the last 6 or so weeks, so I've been working with this idea of "prayer" as like just focusing on the glory/majesty/awesomeness of God -- not like to try understand it or Him (which, we all know, is impossible), but more like just to increase my awareness of Him and how unfathomably "great" He is and to be close to Him. It's different and interesting and I haven't really come to any conclusions as to if/how it is or is not working for me....I have a sense that is probably harder for me than for a lot of people because when I start down the path of trying to be conscious of, say, God's infinite wisdom, I get tempted to try to "figure it out" as opposed to just trying to become conscious of it. So, we shall see how this goes........
So, looks like lots of progress for me in the last 2.5 years. That's a good thing -- makes me look forward to seeing what the next 2.5 bring!
Working the Steps isn't about me acquiring power; working the Steps is about removing the things that block me from being a channel for God's Power.
|01-12-2011, 05:55 AM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Gig Harbor, WA
Many thanks for your kind words and sharing your journey. Yes for me its as been I came I came and I came to belive like the second step begins with I came to Belive. I was reading the spirtuality of Imperfection by Ernest Kurtz and Katerin Ketchum and in it they had a story of the student who wanted to become a Buddah and his Master came in finding him in meditation and prayer. The Master ask what are you doing and the Student says I practing to be Buddah when the Master picks up two bricks and biegins rubbing them and the student ask what are you doing I am making a mirror out the bricks and the student said you can't make a mirror out of bricks and the Master replies you can't become Buddah by sitting there either get up and go out and do good deeds in silence. Action I think has been my about carrying this gift of sobriety into daily living.
I am glad to here you are doing well and keep up the journey as they stay don't quit before the miricale. One thing I like to share is that even I have a lot of time in the program life happens and when things are well things are swell but in rougher times do not dwell. Have a great day.
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|01-14-2011, 04:41 AM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: in the present
I like this story.
I young monk went to the meditation hall with his teacher, an older monk, to learn meditation. The old monk sat down and said nothing. After a long while, the young monk looked at him with a little apprehension. The older monk said, "This is all there is to it, nothing happens."
I am not who I think I am.
All quotes from the 1st Edition of Alcoholics Anonymous (aka The Big Book)
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