September 29

FREEDOM MONTH: DAY 29: Just as the great ocean has one taste, the taste of salt, so also this teaching and discipline has one taste, the taste of liberation. — Gautama Buddha

Spiritual freedom comes only from spiritual devotion and dedication. It does not matter which spiritual practices we follow. The result is freedom.

If you are not certain about this, let’s look at the evidence. Lack of spiritual practice meant disaster and deep unhappiness. No success, no joy, only more and deepening consequences of addiction.

Even a modicum of spiritual practice in recovery; and trust me, I know so many addicts who practice only a modicum of spiritual principles; will increase the freedom of our lives.

Deep practice of spiritual principles results in deeper freedom. Guaranteed!

It does not require that we adhere to any kind of dogma, be it Christian or otherwise. There is no set of principles that contain all the things we get from the practice of 12-step recovery.

It is in the design of this program, its perfection and continuing deepening of our practice that gives us this doorway into the new realm of freedom.

And none of the steps is going to rocket us into that realm like Step 9. Why? Because it is the last of the relationship steps to clean up our past and move into the NOW. And moving into the NOW is the purpose of all spiritual practices.

We are able, one day at a time, to clean up and clear up and restore life to a basic footing in spiritual values. This is critical to a happy life and a way of being that is satisfying to all of us.

Once we renew and restore our relationships with others on a spiritual footing, we are good to walk through the world as free people.

This does not mean political freedom. It means the freedom of the guilt and shame and regret and horror of active addiction. We are freed from the weight of carrying those things for all the years we did, and it is like losing 100 pounds or more of hell that lived with us for a lifetime.

We can stand straight and look the world in the eye. What is done is over. It will not be repeated, unless we decide to let go of these principles. That is up to us. We get to choose, every day, who we will be and how we will live. It is beautiful and amazing and life is rich and full.

It is the result we had only hoped to achieve with drugs and alcohol, but never did. Recovery gives us what drugs and alcohol only promised, or, more honestly, hinted at.

The relief is permanent and complete. As is the freedom. There are no strings attached. Only freedom and peace and joy and happiness. I love this so much!

Published by: Kelly

I am a therapist and counselor with long-term recovery from addictions and personal trauma. My writing reflects these experiences and the road I have traveled in 12-Step recovery settings, along with the work I have done for over 30 years in the field. My love of dolphins includes the stories of them being healers in places all over the world. I long to offer every broken spirit and body the experience of a healing hug. May my words and stories inform, uplift and delight your spirit and soothe your weary heart.

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