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We are driven by a hundred forms of Fear

July 1, 2012

Driven by a hundred forms of fear, self-delusion, self-seeking and self-pity, we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate.  (P62, Alcoholics Anonymous)

I should start by saying that this is a line from the big book of Alcoholics Anonymous.  For those who do not read the book, follow or understand its principals (to the best of our ability) or even prescribe to the maintenance of a spiritual condition, this could all sound a bit severe.

It isn’t.

What lines like this remind me is that I am human, and along with the world around me,  flawed.  But it also suggests that by taking inventory and actions appropriate to any situation I can continue to learn and grow.  I have worked with this philosophy for years.  Most of the time I am successful.  But when I am not in the solution I am invariably in the problem, and as much as I wish I could overcome this once and for all, my best resolve for existing in this body and mind is to remember that I am still learning, still growing, still very teachable, and I am grateful to have been provided an open mind to accept the lapses into aforementioned fear, self-delusion, self-seeking and self-pity.

So what drives this entry?

Fear drives the human.  Am I losing something that I have or am I not getting something that I want?  It would seem that with awareness fear is the driver of any moment that is uncomfortable, agitated, or off-center, I could fall in line and arrest the process: (“when agitated we pause”).  But in some environments the triggers still (and may always) remain and I am sometimes still prey to my human patterns of pride and ego…. characteristics that can be an incredible asset or a confusing defect to the quality of my relationships.

I have been taught that the shame I felt for all manner of reasons throughout my life are not real.  I am not a victim any more than I decide I want to be.  With that in mind it is arguably important that I am able to look at transgressions in daily life with eyes of “intention” and forgive myself and then amend the behavior where necessary (Step 10: we review our day).  From what I learn within this review I am able to grow and change.  Without this process I am in danger of resting on my laurels.

Today I am not acknowledging fear because I am able to understand that the fear is not real.  I accept that I must pay closer attention in areas that have suffered and that I am, by no means, cured of the defects that have caused these irritations in the past.  I am not agitated and I must accept that some parts of the path I am on are going to change.  Others are in need.

Most important, however, is the reminder that I must pause when agitated.   It is the best possible answer to any part of the world that I may not always find acceptable.  With that in mind I am able to grow even quicker than through the process of making amends.

Today I will Stop. Smile. Breathe.

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