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Anyone use Rational Recovery???

Old 06-17-2014, 09:12 AM
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Anyone use Rational Recovery???

Hi there,

I was wondering if anyone has had success with Rational Recovery? If so...what were some things you did to make it successful?

Thx!

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Old 06-17-2014, 10:36 AM
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I used it early on to identify addictive voice, i.e. the beast, and separate my addiction from my "true self" as it were.

As crazy of a concept as it seemed, it really helped me with cravings and riding those out.

I did eventually go to AA meetings, more for a sense of camaraderie with other alcoholics, as well as to learn methods of dealing with my past.

It is unfortunate, imho that RR has such a big bone to pick with the program, because I think they work together nicely.

If you can get sober, and stay sober using RR, and you don't feel that there are any personal issues to deal with, you are fortunate.

But the idea of empowering the individual to quit using RR was very helpful to me.
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Old 06-17-2014, 11:01 AM
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Thank you DoubleBarrell!

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Old 06-17-2014, 12:30 PM
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HI Serenidad. For my story with AVRT and RR, look at the post at the top of the Secular Connections forum page.

Welcome to you!
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Old 06-17-2014, 01:09 PM
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Originally Posted by freshstart57 View Post
HI Serenidad. For my story with AVRT and RR, look at the post at the top of the Secular Connections forum page. Welcome to you!
Thanks Freshstart. Unfortunately I can't find it. I'm on my iphone. Do u know how I can read it? Thx!

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Old 06-17-2014, 01:59 PM
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Here is the link Freshstart mentioned:

http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...ined-long.html

I, personally, am happily recovered by using the RR/AVRT technique. I do see a therapist for things unrelated to drinking and post here from time to time.
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Old 06-22-2014, 08:37 AM
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RR and AVRT all the way here!

It will be almost a year soon since I found the material through reading SR.

Finding out that making a BP was possible and using AVRT to end my addiction , and reading and posting here on SR ,have worked for me.

One of the best things I found in the material and their(RR) approach was , for me, a better understanding of what addiction is, or perhaps , a radically different perspective on what I thought addiction was. I suggest getting the material in book form and reading through all the threads here, onward!!
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Old 06-22-2014, 12:21 PM
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I'm glad you posted this, Serinidad. I was about to start a thread asking the same question. I know the AV concept is helpful to many but I was wondering if anyone actually stopped and stayed quit by using Rational Recovery. I was also put out by how anti--AA it was. It made me feel like the author was trying to dissuade alcoholics away from AA so they'd buy his book instead. I mean he seriously had NOTHING good to say about them.

I'm curious HOW badly addicted the people were who quit by following the program were, and how much they were drinking. Guess it's time to look into the personal stories. I know I cannot be honest with myself and follow the twelve steps. They aren't for me. I may buy RR book and read it all the way thru his time if it seems worth it.
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Old 06-22-2014, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by dwtbd View Post
RR and AVRT all the way here! It will be almost a year soon since I found the material through reading SR. Finding out that making a BP was possible and using AVRT to end my addiction , and reading and posting here on SR ,have worked for me. One of the best things I found in the material and their(RR) approach was , for me, a better understanding of what addiction is, or perhaps , a radically different perspective on what I thought addiction was. I suggest getting the material in book form and reading through all the threads here, onward!!



What did you learn about the RR description of addiction that made sense to you on a personal level? Do you think the RR description of addiction is widely shared by the personal and professional recovery community? Here is RR's simple version of What is addiction?


What is addiction?
Addiction is a voluntary behavior (such as drinking alcohol or using drugs) that persists against your own own better judgment. Thus, addiction cannot be “diagnosed” or attributed to you by others, including physicians. It is solely up to you to decide if your drinking threatens or harms others and yourself. You must decide now whether continuing your addictive pleasures is worth the destruction that will likely result. In other words, you are free to choose between drinking and not drinking — between the high life and family life, between right and wrong.

As you can see Mr Trimpey clearly categorizes drinking as, high life and wrong versus non drinking as family life and right. What do you think he actually means here and is this the same choiice for all people and all addictions?
Do you also believe we volunteer to be addicts, was that our intention or will?
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Old 06-22-2014, 01:21 PM
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Hey guys,

There are a LOT of people out here who have quit drinking without AA. I'm sorry you felt put off by anti-AA talk in Trimpey's book.

Have you checked out the AVRT thread on SR here on Secular Connections? You will find a lot more nuts and bolts type answers there. It is a good thread and has been going a long time.

I wish you every success!

I quit drinking over 20 years ago before I ever found RR and AVRT. However, I used a method of my own design that was very similar. It is very common sensical and really works for those of us who prefer a non-12-step approach.

Keep posting, and keep reading. There are LOTS of us here who want to help you succeed.
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Old 06-22-2014, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by samseb5351 View Post
What did you learn about the RR description of addiction that made sense to you on a personal level? Do you think the RR description of addiction is widely shared by the personal and professional recovery community? Here is RR's simple version of What is addiction?


What is addiction?
Addiction is a voluntary behavior (such as drinking alcohol or using drugs) that persists against your own own better judgment. Thus, addiction cannot be “diagnosed” or attributed to you by others, including physicians. It is solely up to you to decide if your drinking threatens or harms others and yourself. You must decide now whether continuing your addictive pleasures is worth the destruction that will likely result. In other words, you are free to choose between drinking and not drinking — between the high life and family life, between right and wrong.

As you can see Mr Trimpey clearly categorizes drinking as, high life and wrong versus non drinking as family life and right. What do you think he actually means here and is this the same choiice for all people and all addictions?
Do you also believe we volunteer to be addicts, was that our intention or will?
For me the biggest take away from the material was divorcing the disease model from addiction.
I don't have a copy of the book with me , but I think your quasi quote was taken slightly out of context , in the sense that I do not remember it, the book, refuting the law of causality. I do not believe that I can choose whether or not losing my job would have adverse effects for my family, or that I have choice over whether or not causing an accident while driving intoxicated will have adverse effects on those involved. But I do believe I have a choice to drink or use drugs.
I also believe that when someone realizes (if?) they are addicted , it is within their power to end the addiction, actually the addict is the only one that can end it.
Addiction is , I think, a many faceted phenomenon , there is physical/chemical dependency aspect that contributes to how the individual perceives and processes reality and how it can seem to the individual that they are being controlled by an outside force.
My perspective change came in the form of seeing that letting myself be controlled by the desire (and acting on the desire) to be intoxicated ,come hell or high water , was the problem and I could actively work to change that behavior.
I ended my addiction by consciously deciding to stop drinking( I made a choice), and I choose to not become addicted again.
I am not sure what you want to hear from me ,but the material in JT's book showed , me at least, that that choice was possible. Prior to reading the material the only perspective on addiction I had came from the "recovery community/philosophy" that allowed me to see my addiction as a disease , which quite frankly gave me a good "out" for a number of years, eg in essence I was a faultless victim doomed to forces beyond my control ect. It may be the case that I misinterpreted both sources, but good on me anyway, eh?
I am a non drinker, and plan to stay that way.
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Old 06-22-2014, 07:38 PM
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I love combining RR and AA.

I've tried one and then the other and this time I have used them together and have had the most luck.

I have a new relationship with my children. I finalized a divorce and met a wonderful man who has been an amazing part of my life.

It's what works for each of us. I don't have all the answers but I have ones that work for me.
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Old 06-22-2014, 09:29 PM
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When i found RR (with others help) i knew immediately that it was what i was looking for. i have never been much for blind faith. i value research, and scientific method. I value results over ritual.

I understand why AA works. i believe it is valuable, and i thank AA for all knowledge imparted to me. I think their true strength is fellowship. its great to be able to talk others that have had intimate experience with the same sorts of problems as yourself. i certainly felt welcomed as a newcomer.

The weak side off AA (OPINION) is the tradition. by definition, tradition does not seek change. bill w. and dr.bob came up with something that was groundbreaking, and it offered a workable alternative, in a time when there wasnt much hope for those fighting addiction. but psychology and behavioral sciences were not remotely as advanced then. now we know know behavior modification as an applied science!- proven in redundant studies, over time. AA has not adapted, and i think the rate of relapse would reflect that, if we knew the numbers.

Among the philosophies that i could not compromise with in the rooms was the theory that i drink too much because i am broken, or defective, or sick in my soul. i have issues. most people i know have issues. other than having an affinity for mind altering toxins, i deal with situations pretty well. i form strong bonds with friends and family. i am very bothered if i cause others distress. i feel appropriate concern, sadness, awe, happiness and love considering my circumstances as a human lucky enough to have time to think about things.

i walked out of a meeting, and really gave this some thought. i came to the conclusion that when not drinking, i was well within the middle of the mental health spectrum. I started reading RR. behavior mod techniques all have one thing in common, they aim at the behavior. just in the spirit of being open-minded, i allow that if i stop drinking, and im still "sick" ill high-tail it to a meeting and offer testimony.

RR's secondary benefit, in my opinion, is that along with reducing/extinguishing a problem behavior is the serious reduction in desire. in order to work the program you are required to be honest with yourself. if you are not able to do this, it will not work. its easy to say you want to stop drinking. you have to stop fooling with yourself to truthfully answer why.
THIS IS THE ANSWER: "I WANT TO STOP DRINKING BECAUSE I WANT TO." <- see? the second "want" is where you realize, after looking at everything you will be missing (the fun parts too) that it doesnt even compare to what you will be gaining.

its not about a demon in a bottle. its about an informed decision based on all the truth you can stand.
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Old 06-23-2014, 05:12 AM
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Originally Posted by samseb5351 View Post
What did you learn about the RR description of addiction that made sense to you on a personal level?
Not pertaining directly to the quote you provided, but to the AVRT approach in general, I found it instrumental to differentiate between my addiction and my self. Before recognizing this difference I knew I needed to stop drinking, but I also had a seemingly endless compulsion to drink. I didn't understand this constant battle in my head and that lack of understanding increased my anxiety and perpetuated the problem.

AVRT/RR offers a simplified version of what is really going on in an addicted person's brain. I like 8-syllable words and additional detail so I did additional research, but not everyone wants or needs the long version of the game plan: When addicted, a part of the brain over which we have no direct control in terms of its particular function (the Beast), compels us to seek our substance of choice. Our superior frontal cortex (the Self), wherein lies our reasoning, inhibitions, logic, decision-making, etc., needs to recognize that compulsion for what it is, and refuse to act on it.

This made eminent sense to me on a personal level.
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Old 06-23-2014, 07:55 AM
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I use some components of RR, but not all. I like the idea of making a definitive decision about not drinking anymore, ever - for me this works better than one day at a time. I also find it very valuable and essential to learn to monitor our thoughts and feelings to recognize patterns that might lead to relapse, more than just simply cravings, and I feel I've become pretty good at this. I do not think about these as separate from "myself", though, that sort of splitting does not work for me, so I just identify negative thoughts as some of my thoughts.

I also like to use a combination of different methods, purely awareness and logic were not enough for me in the past.
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Old 06-23-2014, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Nonsensical View Post
Not pertaining directly to the quote you provided, but to the AVRT approach in general, I found it instrumental to differentiate between my addiction and my self. Before recognizing this difference I knew I needed to stop drinking, but I also had a seemingly endless compulsion to drink. I didn't understand this constant battle in my head and that lack of understanding increased my anxiety and perpetuated the problem.

AVRT/RR offers a simplified version of what is really going on in an addicted person's brain. I like 8-syllable words and additional detail so I did additional research, but not everyone wants or needs the long version of the game plan: When addicted, a part of the brain over which we have no direct control in terms of its particular function (the Beast), compels us to seek our substance of choice. Our superior frontal cortex (the Self), wherein lies our reasoning, inhibitions, logic, decision-making, etc., needs to recognize that compulsion for what it is, and refuse to act on it.

This made eminent sense to me on a personal level.
I really like your post. The RR method is the only thing I have tried in my 20 plus year career that worked to help me STOP drinking.

That said, what really resonated with me was "found it instrumental to differentiate between my addiction and my self." What relief it was to hear that I didn't need to carry this around the rest of my life. I could make a choice and BE DONE. I am not "my addiction." It is a very small part of who and what I am.

Not to say that I am not struggling mightily with the Beast right now. It is extremely angry that I am not listening nor believing its stupid lies anymore.
I believe the RR concept is quite simple. Just not easy.

Thank you for your insight.
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Old 06-23-2014, 01:17 PM
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Have Long Have You Got?

Man, there's some fine Posts and thinking going on here. Hence, my Post Title above. I can't write 'enough' on how well this sort of deep insight written above is working for me.

While glommed onto by certain Factions in our Culture for their own Political gain, I like aspects of the writings of Ayn Rand. The small Company Owner I worked for fo evah gave each Employee copies of her Book 'Atlas Shrugged'. My Wife also enjoyed it. When this gift happened >25 years ago, I dug in and read her other Works, and her unfinished bits, too. Amazing writing for a Russian Emigre for whom English was a Second Language.

As with this Thread perspective, her thinking aligned with mine first developed in my Teens. That one need not prostrate oneself before any Cloud Spook, and that all good can be derived from one's own thinking; introspection; and essential Being. To me, this Model answers the OP question re: the thinking one can adopt to make RR, and similar Models, successful. This thinking constitutes my 'Spirituality', internalized. 'Do no harm'.

In the present case, I am confident of controlling my own impulses once I recognized them for what they are: potentially destructive. As the old Joke from Borscht Belt Comedian Henny Youngman goes... A Patient goes in for pain experienced when lifting his Arm: 'Doctor, Doctor, it hurts when I do that'. Doctor: 'So, don't do that'. This is how I now approach Drinking. Henny Youngman: my HP. Cultures have been getting high fo evah. Further, I'm Genetically-predisposed to that Behavior. I keep this deep understanding simple, and don't beat myself up over it. To do so is just more Self-loathing, promoted by many formal Religions in order to exert control. Sorry, but no Victim of such thinking lives at this address.

With the help of Folks here, and derivative insights from RR/AVRT, I've fairly-easily compartmentalized 'The Beast', and can see it for the 'externalized' entity it is. The essential 'I' is someone else altogether, and can call out The Beast as req'd while not giving in like some Knee Jerk Neanderthal. No need to over-react to Triggers, any more than there is for this Concealed Carry Permit Holder to shoot someone who flips me 'The Bird' in Traffic after cutting me off. A really chilled Viet Nam War Soldier, and a Confidant in my Sobriety, taught me that event 'x' happens. A Booze Trigger, or a Traffic altercation. How you react to that objective event in time at some GPS-location spot on this Planet is completely up to you. We, and we alone, overlay an emotion or interpretation to a neutral, objective event: the specter, say, of a full Champagne Glass at a Wedding Reception.. Indeed, when you 'Knee Jerk' a reaction, you're actually giving that other Driver final power over you. And, just why is that again? The same with letting a Booze Bottle or a Social Trigger at, say, a Wedding have the ultimate say in how one behaves.

Old saying: 'He who controls your anger controls you'. Revise that to: 'Triggers that control your Drinking control you'.

The entire Model of needing to prostrate oneself to some Cloud Spook 'force' to maintain Sobriety is not something I can sit through in Meetings in order to gain purported benefits. It's painful and Self-crippling, frankly, to choke down that Model. It's 'anti' who I fundamentally am. As did Rand in her Writings, I flip that Model 180 degrees and reaffirm daily by direct action that I am the ultimate source to fix what ails me. Rational Recovery 'Guru' Trimpey takes this same approach as Rand, and has no use for Cloud Spook-based Recovery Models. Yah, he's a 'Family Values' promoter in staunchly outlining the Moral Imperative of not Drinking/Drugging, and I'm OK with that. It's an aside to the larger positive worth of 'his' Model where I don't hand my Recovery 'power' to any external Entity. They can come and go. I need internalized constancy and presence.

"Whatever gets you through the night. It's alright. Alright.' ~ John Lennon

Not being 'Recovered' unless you follow certain Steps rings as hollow to me as 'not being a good Catholic' unless you follow certain dogmatic - often oppressive - practices. I toss them both out the Window because I don't accept the core Dogma structure of those Models. I haven't for Decades. I'm more prone to gain necessary insights through Meditation. Including voluntarily following constructive Steps. Vegetarianism is a practice of the Seventh Day Adventist Dogma I was brought up with. While I'm not a Vegan, I certainly could see adopting Vegetarianism on the basis of it being good for me, and being a decision made by my own Rational Being. Skip the SDA Dogma, for me, and keep the good Health aspects of that practice.

While writing this at ~80 WPM, I thought of 'The Real Me' by 'The Who'. THEE most ferocious Band I've ever seen in Concert. Stunning. Very germane Lyrics to our individual Journeys here. As I watched this Vid Clip, the damage inflicted on the Band hit me. My Bass Hero, John 'Thunder Fingers' Enwistle, ODed in a Vegas Hotel Room Bed from a massive Cocaine Bender at age 57 just before starting a Tour. A legendary Drinker suffering from Heart Disease, he'd often have onstage 2 white Bike Rider's Bottles; one on either side of his Mic Stand. One contained Vodka. The other Red Wine.

Drummer Zak Starkey, the Son of Ringo and Actress Barbara Bach, occupies the Drum Throne left empty from 32 year-old Keith Moon ODing on 32 Pills of the Alcohol Detox Sedative 'Chomethiazole'. Recommended maximum dosage during his Home Detox was 3 Pills/day. Ringo and Barbara both Detoxed at a Facility years ago, leading to his Hit Song Lyric: 'No no no, I don't do that no more ~ I'm tired of waking up on the Floor'.

Pete Townshend used to down a Bottle of Brandy daily. After he Rehabbed, he wrote the Album 'Empty Glass' about his Alcoholism.

'The Real Me' ~ The Who

Even if my Model is a false Construct of my Mind, the inarguable fact is that my tailored version of RR/AVRT is working for me - the sole Person it need work for - ~5.5 months in.
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Old 06-23-2014, 01:54 PM
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Originally Posted by MesaMan View Post
Man, there's some fine Posts and thinking going on here. Hence, my Post Title above. I can't write 'enough' on how well this sort of deep insight written above is working for me.

While glommed onto by certain Factions in our Culture for their own Political gain, I like aspects of the writings of Ayn Rand. The small Company Owner I worked for fo evah gave each Employee copies of her Book 'Atlas Shrugged'. My Wife also enjoyed it. When this gift happened >25 years ago, I dug in and read her other Works, and her unfinished bits, too. Amazing writing for a Russian Emigre for whom English was a Second Language.

As with this Thread perspective, her thinking aligned with mine first developed in my Teens. That one need not prostrate oneself before any Cloud Spook, and that all good can be derived from one's own thinking; introspection; and essential Being. To me, this Model answers the OP question re: the thinking one can adopt to make RR, and similar Models, successful. This thinking constitutes my 'Spirituality', internalized. 'Do no harm'.

In the present case, I am confident of controlling my own impulses once I recognized them for what they are: potentially destructive. As the old Joke from Borscht Belt Comedian Henny Youngman goes... A Patient goes in for pain experienced when lifting his Arm: 'Doctor, Doctor, it hurts when I do that'. Doctor: 'So, don't do that'. This is how I now approach Drinking. Henny Youngman: my HP. Cultures have been getting high fo evah. Further, I'm Genetically-predisposed to that Behavior. I keep this deep understanding simple, and don't beat myself up over it. To do so is just more Self-loathing, promoted by many formal Religions in order to exert control. Sorry, but no Victim of such thinking lives at this address.

With the help of Folks here, and derivative insights from RR/AVRT, I've fairly-easily compartmentalized 'The Beast', and can see it for the 'externalized' entity it is. The essential 'I' is someone else altogether, and can call out The Beast as req'd while not giving in like some Knee Jerk Neanderthal. No need to over-react to Triggers, any more than there is for this Concealed Carry Permit Holder to shoot someone who flips me 'The Bird' in Traffic after cutting me off. A really chilled Viet Nam War Soldier, and a Confidant in my Sobriety, taught me that event 'x' happens. A Booze Trigger, or a Traffic altercation. How you react to that objective event in time at some GPS-location spot on this Planet is completely up to you. We, and we alone, overlay an emotion or interpretation to a neutral, objective event: the specter, say, of a full Champagne Glass at a Wedding Reception.. Indeed, when you 'Knee Jerk' a reaction, you're actually giving that other Driver final power over you. And, just why is that again? The same with letting a Booze Bottle or a Social Trigger at, say, a Wedding have the ultimate say in how one behaves.

Old saying: 'He who controls your anger controls you'. Revise that to: 'Triggers that control your Drinking control you'.

The entire Model of needing to prostrate oneself to some Cloud Spook 'force' to maintain Sobriety is not something I can sit through in Meetings in order to gain purported benefits. It's painful and Self-crippling, frankly, to choke down that Model. It's 'anti' who I fundamentally am. As did Rand in her Writings, I flip that Model 180 degrees and reaffirm daily by direct action that I am the ultimate source to fix what ails me. Rational Recovery 'Guru' Trimpey takes this same approach as Rand, and has no use for Cloud Spook-based Recovery Models. Yah, he's a 'Family Values' promoter in staunchly outlining the Moral Imperative of not Drinking/Drugging, and I'm OK with that. It's an aside to the larger positive worth of 'his' Model where I don't hand my Recovery 'power' to any external Entity. They can come and go. I need internalized constancy and presence.

"Whatever gets you through the night. It's alright. Alright.' ~ John Lennon

Not being 'Recovered' unless you follow certain Steps rings as hollow to me as 'not being a good Catholic' unless you follow certain dogmatic - often oppressive - practices. I toss them both out the Window because I don't accept the core Dogma structure of those Models. I haven't for Decades. I'm more prone to gain necessary insights through Meditation. Including voluntarily following constructive Steps. Vegetarianism is a practice of the Seventh Day Adventist Dogma I was brought up with. While I'm not a Vegan, I certainly could see adopting Vegetarianism on the basis of it being good for me, and being a decision made by my own Rational Being. Skip the SDA Dogma, for me, and keep the good Health aspects of that practice.

While writing this at ~80 WPM, I thought of 'The Real Me' by 'The Who'. THEE most ferocious Band I've ever seen in Concert. Stunning. Very germane Lyrics to our individual Journeys here. As I watched this Vid Clip, the damage inflicted on the Band hit me. My Bass Hero, John 'Thunder Fingers' Enwistle, ODed in a Vegas Hotel Room Bed from a massive Cocaine Bender at age 57 just before starting a Tour. A legendary Drinker suffering from Heart Disease, he'd often have onstage 2 white Bike Rider's Bottles; one on either side of his Mic Stand. One contained Vodka. The other Red Wine.

Drummer Zak Starkey, the Son of Ringo and Actress Barbara Bach, occupies the Drum Throne left empty from 32 year-old Keith Moon ODing on 32 Pills of the Alcohol Detox Sedative 'Chomethiazole'. Recommended maximum dosage during his Home Detox was 3 Pills/day. Ringo and Barbara both Detoxed at a Facility years ago, leading to his Hit Song Lyric: 'No no no, I don't do that no more ~ I'm tired of waking up on the Floor'.

Pete Townshend used to down a Bottle of Brandy daily. After he Rehabbed, he wrote the Album 'Empty Glass' about his Alcoholism.

'The Real Me' ~ The Who

Even if my Model is a false Construct of my Mind, the inarguable fact is that my tailored version of RR/AVRT is working for me - the sole Person it need work for - ~5.5 months in.
Very interesting thoughts! Thank you for sharing them with us. I too am a fan of Rand and fell in love with her work decades ago. Alas, it wasn't enough to keep me from losing my way. It was enough, however, to demonstrate that AA and the 12 step model simply wouldn't work for me.
I wouldn't have thought to draw a parallel between Rand and AVRT, but when considered it is a perfect fit.

After all as she wrote in Atlas "man's only moral commandment is: Thou shalt think."

Regards.
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Old 06-23-2014, 01:58 PM
  # 19 (permalink)  
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dont get fooled again no no yeahh meet the new boss same as the old boss
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Old 06-23-2014, 04:04 PM
  # 20 (permalink)  
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I used AVRT. In the beginning, I also leaned heavily on SR for insight and support—joining a newcomer's monthly class brought me a lot of encouragement and a sense of accountability.

AVRT purists will tell you that one does not really need support to beat addiction. But purists of any kind are never much fun.

These days, I'm just a non-drinker. Period. Drinking rarely comes to mind, and when it does, it's a faded memory. Like a bad relationship, long ago, for which you no longer harbor any resentment, but neither would you ever want to go back.

So yes, I would say I had success with Rational Recovery.
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