Thanksgiving 2017, TED video

We met on Wednesday and since we were in room six with media access we chose to watch some videos after our check in.

We started with https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gXDMoiEkyuQ

I have a personal serendipity story around watching this one. It goes like this.
Our group is meeting on a different night, in a different room, doing something different (watching videos). Another person randomly chooses this video on gratitude to start us off. In the beginning of the video I am stunned to see some images of the small (150-175?) town of Elk on the Northern California coast where I grew up. I then realize that the images are from the early 70’s when I was living there. The images are not really important to the TED talk and the video moves on. As I sit there still processing seeing the pictures I suddenly realize that one of the photo’s shows the exact place where I got drunk for the first time, the town soccer field, out in a cow pasture behind the town.
So that happened : )

and then we watched https://www.ted.com/talks/johann_hari_everything_you_think_you_know_about_addiction_is_wrong

Shame Faced, Fall 2017

We next chose to read and discuss, Shame Faced published by Hazlden. http://www.hazelden.org/OA_HTML/item/2891?Shame-Faced&src_url=itemquest

I think we spent 6-8 weeks on this one. It’s written in very traditional 12 step language. For some of us (me) that requires an effort to translate the words or “take what I like and leave the rest”. A good practice for me and I’m glad we worked through it.

There may be copies on our book cart in the hall outside room three.

Almost a year later

And We Are Still Here.

It feels like time to get back to this blog, at least for a little while. We’ve been doing some different topics and I’ve been feeling like they ought to be recorded here. So a few catch up posts are in order. I’m putting them in separate posts so they can stand on there own.

We Are Still Here

Over the past several weeks I haven't been posting weekly agendas because it seems silly to post essentially the same thing week after week as we work our way through the book The Alternative 12 Steps : A Secular Recovery Guide. We have also moved away from sending out weekly reminders to our email list.

I have to admit that I've had some concern that these steps might lead to reduced involvement in the same kind of way that every week I have a moment when I wonder if anyone else will show up. I haven't been alone yet.

When I look back at this year or the 18 months since we started this group I am very proud of everyone who has had the courage and curiosity to join us. Each of you has been a blessing to me and I suspect to others. It has been powerful and healing for me to see and hear first hand the many ways we struggle and to strive to struggle well together. Participation has strengthened my ability to listen deeply, to avoid judgement and to lean towards compassion both with others and with myself.

I thank you all.

Michael

 

A Friendship Blessing
 
May you be blessed with good friends.
May you learn to be a good friend to yourself.
May you be able to journey to that place in your soul where
there is great love, warmth, feeling, and forgiveness.
May this change you.
May it transfigure that which is negative, distant, or cold in you.
May you be brought in to the real passion, kinship, and affinity of belonging.
May you treasure your friends.
May you be good to them and may you be there for them;
may they bring you all the blessing, challenges, truth,
and light that you need for your journey.
May you never be isolated.
May you always be in the gentle nest of belonging with your anam ċara. 
 
John O’Donohue
From Anam Ċara

 

And a link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4iCB238XKI

 

 

 

11-17-2016 Alternative 12 Steps, Step 2

11-17-2016 Alternative 12 Steps, Step 2

UCE Addictions & Recovery Group
November 17 Agenda

Opening Words

Listening is a magnetic and strange thing, a creative force. The friends who listen to us are the ones we move toward. When we are listened to, it creates us, makes us unfold and expand.
Karl A. Menninger

Welcome

Welcome to the UCE Addiction & Recovery Group. We are a group of people who have
struggled with our own addictions and the addictions of others. We hope to struggle well
together as we work towards finding sanity, peace, love, and healthy relationships in our
lives. We will strive to spend our time together in a spirit of love embracing the inherent
worth and dignity of all. We accept and respect the varied paths that our members will
take to find sanity, peace, love, and healthy relationships. We covenant to to be together
in a safe, confidential environment where we can explore our paths and our stories.

Business

Check-in and Processing of Check-in

Accountability Asks or Reporting

Quiet Pause

Discussion: The Alternative 12 Steps : A Secular Recovery Guide

We are working our way through this book, The Alternative 12 Steps : A Secular Recovery Guide.

Anyone is free to bring a different topic if they feel the desire.
For this week we read the pages 28-31

The book is available online http://aaagnostica.org/2014/07/30/the-alternative-12-steps-second-edition/ and we have copies available at the church for folks to use or buy.

Closing Words

The hearing that is only in the ears is one thing. The hearing of understanding is another. But the hearing of the spirit is not limited to any one faculty, to the ear or the mind. Hence it demands emptiness of all of the faculties. And when the faculties are empty, the whole being listens. There is then a direct grasp of what is right there before you that can never be heard with the ear or understood with the mind.
Chuang-Tzu

11-10-2016 Alternative 12 Steps, Helen

UCE Addictions & Recovery Group
November 10 Agenda

Opening Words

 “If we attempt to act and do things for others or for the world without deepening our own self-understanding, our own freedom, integrity, and capacity to love, we will not have anything to give to others.”
Thomas Merton

Welcome

Welcome to the UCE Addiction & Recovery Group. We are a group of people who have
struggled with our own addictions and the addictions of others. We hope to struggle well
together as we work towards finding sanity, peace, love, and healthy relationships in our
lives. We will strive to spend our time together in a spirit of love embracing the inherent
worth and dignity of all. We accept and respect the varied paths that our members will
take to find sanity, peace, love, and healthy relationships. We covenant to to be together
in a safe, confidential environment where we can explore our paths and our stories.

Business

Check-in and Processing of Check-in

Accountability Asks or Reporting

Quiet Pause

Discussion: The Alternative 12 Steps : A Secular Recovery Guide

We are working our way through this book, The Alternative 12 Steps : A Secular Recovery Guide.

Anyone is free to bring a different topic if they feel the desire.
For this week we read the pages 22-27

The book is available online http://aaagnostica.org/2014/07/30/the-alternative-12-steps-second-edition/ and we have copies available at the church for folks to use or buy.

Closing Words

What We Need Is Here

Geese appear high over us,
pass, and the sky closes. Abandon,
as in love or sleep, holds
them to their way, clear
in the ancient faith: what we need
is here. And we pray, not
for new earth or heaven, but to be
quiet in heart, and in eye,
clear. What we need is here.
Wendell Berry

 

11-3-2016 Alternative 12 Steps,Step 1

UCE Addictions & Recovery Group
November 3 Agenda

Opening Words

“If we attempt to act and do things for others or for the world without deepening our own self-understanding, our own freedom, integrity, and capacity to love, we will not have anything to give to others.” – Thomas Merton

 

Welcome

Welcome to the UCE Addiction & Recovery Group. We are a group of people who have
struggled with our own addictions and the addictions of others. We hope to struggle well
together as we work towards finding sanity, peace, love, and healthy relationships in our
lives. We will strive to spend our time together in a spirit of love embracing the inherent
worth and dignity of all. We accept and respect the varied paths that our members will
take to find sanity, peace, love, and healthy relationships. We covenant to to be together
in a safe, confidential environment where we can explore our paths and our stories.

Business

Check-in and Processing of Check-in

Accountability Asks or Reporting

Quiet Pause

Discussion: The Alternative 12 Steps : A Secular Recovery Guide

We are working our way through this book, The Alternative 12 Steps : A Secular Recovery Guide.

Anyone is free to bring a different topic if they feel the desire.
For this week we read the pages 16-22

The book is available online http://aaagnostica.org/2014/07/30/the-alternative-12-steps-second-edition/ and we have copies available at the church for folks to use or buy.

Closing Words

What We Need Is Here

Geese appear high over us,
pass, and the sky closes. Abandon,
as in love or sleep, holds
them to their way, clear
in the ancient faith: what we need
is here. And we pray, not
for new earth or heaven, but to be
quiet in heart, and in eye,
clear. What we need is here.
Wendell Berry