Chapter five of the Basic Text, plainly states: "Self-obsession is the core of our disease." Addiction is the disease of ideas... thinking... thoughts... wrapped and entangled around the axis of self. More deeply stated in the Step Working guide, from the Step One section it's being "Caught in endless loops that lead to physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual decay..." Versions and experiences of being cut off... limited... contraction... and isolated... and that based on my direct experience, I'm powerless... helpless and without authority that my mind has an endless capacity for negativity.
In the preface of the first edition of the Basic Text... near the end the experience of our predecessors reads as... “We cannot change the nature of the addict or addiction. We can help to change the old lie “Once an addict, always an addict,” by striving to make recovery more available.” In relation to the section, my grand sponsor used to share in meetings and gatherings... "Addiction is a lie, and a lie is dead because we are the proof of that." When I asked him about what that meant, he said... "It's the grace within our healing through the force and power of Love... that we experience a moment-to-moment, day-to-day reprieve from being dominated by the dis-ease and un-ease of negative thoughts that pop into our brain, and we are no longer compelled to act on them, as a result of Love." Put another Way... Love... Goodwill... Service... Sympathy which is empathy + caring... are more powerful than addiction which is the polar opposite of Love. And for those reasons being fully whole and wholly free isn't a cliché but a reality.
That exchange with him hit me so hard that it caused me to physically shake like I was having a seizure. Hearing him say that... and seeing how my sponsor was... and all those connected to him, including how I was learning to be myself, deepened my desire to stop holding on to hesitations and reservations that the disease between my ears had about being in recovery. The experience of Love defeated my doubt... and I've gotten to see that over and over and over for the last 3 decades of my recovery, repeated in amazing ways with literally thousands of addicts. There was no drug on this planet that ever gave me This sense and actual experience of freedom.
Chapter five, while it describes the nature of addiction... also defines what "Recovery," is. It's pretty plain too. "Recovery is an active (not passive) change in our ideas and attitudes." For me, it has come to mean that, despite the fact I'm powerless over the negative and self-doubt that show up in my mind... I'm not powerless in how I can respond to them. Acceptance defeats resentment. Love dissolves anger. Faith... Positive Belief + Positive Actions in the present moment defeats fear and the triangle of self-obsession. It's clear, direct, and simple. For that reason, we no longer have to wallow in being helpless, hopeless, and useless. That's my experience and reality.
Just For Today, I will consciously and intentionally focus my awareness, attention, and actions on using L.O.V.E. with Lots of Voluntary Efforts to live my way, into a new way of relating to my heart and mind.