grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference. – Amen”
– The Serenity Prayer
It occurred to me, after going to my most recent recovery retreat, and noticing over and over that we are an addictive society where many wants but few needs are fulfilled and where denial is an integral part of being an “American,” that maybe the Twelve Steps might apply.
I adapted questions from a book meant for Adult Children of Alcoholic or otherwise Dysfunctional Families which I had spent years answering and did my best to provide MY answers. This is an opportunity to provide YOUR answers as well.
There are no right or wrong answers, but the idea is to eventually get to a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves and, moving on, to make amends for the harm we’ve caused, both inadvertently and on purpose. Furthermore, I’m hoping we’re looking for lives with meaning and purpose, for goals higher than putting a new car or truck in the driveway; for goals not necessarily in opposition to profit and certainly not in opposition to prosperity, but more supportive of our neighbors and friends, both nearby and distant … more like the days in which we all helped each other in both good times and bad. I’m hoping to help create a world where peace AND prosperity happen simultaneously and continuously; a world where there’s less competition and contention and more cooperation; a world we might be proud to pass on to our great-grandchildren and their offspring.
We want honest and workable relationships, not only with fellow Americans but with Buddhists, Hindus, socialists and Muslims. We may have felt some shame at all our taking and the inadvertent suffering we caused without really thinking about it. We may be just waking up to the fact that our thinking and our actions, while they seemed justified and “right” at the time, have led to a world which is spinning out of control, both at home and overseas.
Whatever your motivations, I invite you on this journey with me and, where our paths diverge, that your own journey finds serenity, courage, and wisdom.
©David N. Dodson, October, 2015, Phoenix, AZ