I always say 'The truth will set you free'.
(I know its' not original, but I DO end up saying it quite a lot to people!)
So, the 'rule' is, if it doesn't feel 'free', then it simply just ISN'T the 'truth'.
Well that's how I see it anyway.
That explains also why it is 'gods will' for us to be 'happy joyous and FREE'.
I LOVE the word 'free' as a description of an inner condition. If I REALLY feel 'free' inside myself, then I ALWAYS feel happy and joyous at the same time. I cannot imagine feeling 'free' inside myself and NOT feeling 'happy and joyous' at the same time.
Free (to me) describes the feeling I have when I accept things as they are without needing to change them. Its actually hard to describe what it feels like inside, but its a really LOVELY feeling. I am not bound to any particular outcome, there is a feeling of no obstruction, no roadblock, no tangle, no Gordian knot!
Like when Bill describes his 'spiritual awakening'
"I felt lifted up, as though the great clean wind of a mountain top blew through and through." (from Bills' story in the Big Book)
That sort of describes what 'free' feels like. Its a lovely emotion, and I do not expect to be able to do it justice by trying to describe it in words. But it is a very godly thing. And tells us we are on track.
Another way I think of what the 'free' feeling is, is being like the way people say they feel when they have near death experiences or out of body experiences. You know when people have road accidents or heart attacks and find themselves looking down at their body DISPASSIONATELY and AT PEACE whilst the ambulance people attend to the body, or while the surgeon performs life saving surgery? Well that is sort of how I see what 'free' means.
It's the absence of drama, and self will. No controlling tendency, and a sense of peace in an otherwise traumatic set of conditions.
(By the way there is a GREAT chapter on near death experiences in the book 'The Tibetan Book of living and Dying' by Sogyal Rinpoche.)
I suppose what I'm saying is that 'free' for me, means feeling UNATTACHED to people, places, and things, and outcomes.
I would say the OPPOSITE of 'free' would be what I call CONTRACTION, which is another way of saying resentment. All resentment creates (to some degree) a 'knot' of anxiety inside, and Buddhists often refer to these emotional imbalances as 'contraction'. BAD feelings do not feel 'free', they feel 'contracted', 'knotty', 'stuck'. All 'bad' feelings are resentments in some form. (as far as I am concerned anyway). 'Free' is like saying 'no resentment'.
So anything that DOESN'T feel like that, is JUST NOT TRUE. (Based on my understanding of that statement)
It doesn't mean I am NOT experiencing stuff that doesn't feel 'free', it just means that the beliefs that are 'propping up' those feelings are DELUSION. They are not 'right view'. They are INCORRECT assessments of reality. If I COULD see the 'truth' (or reality) it would NOT feel like that.
For me the 'truth' is what people (say they) experience when they die, the blissful infinite ?? condition of light, you hear people talking about. I've never had one (that I am aware of) but I have always LOVED the way people describe that 'place'. The glimpses of 'grace' that I get from talking to my higher power and trying to be of service give me a CLUE as to how good it could feel to connect with that 'place' permanently.
Personally I don't think ANYONE knows the truth really, except 'god', whatever 'god' is. There's no point trying to figure it out, but the GOOD news is that even if we have NO CLUE what the 'truth' is, we can STILL 'become more like' our higher power, because..
You MOVE TOWARDS, and BECOME LIKE, THAT WHICH YOU THINK ABOUT, whether it is good for you, or bad for you
So rather than waste time trying to figure out the impossible (ie the 'truth'), I just use my feelings to guide me to what feels free. The freer I feel, the closer I am to the 'truth'. The more 'attached' and 'un-free' I feel, the more I am in DELUSION.
This always cheers me up when I am tangled up in some unhappy condition! Some part of me KNOWS that the condition I am feeling is NOT reality. It is a 'twisted' version of reality. 'Twisted' by me and my self will!
Bloody ell! Isn't it weird that the thoughts and reasoning we take for granted after a while of being in recovery, are just so weird! We are funny animals. I think It's funny that our ordinary daily lives are permeated by this sort of reasoning. Who'd have thought eh? It's a funny old world! If I didn't have this information, I just couldn't function. I would be overwhelmed! Its funny that we need this weird esoteric s**t, just to function on a most basic level, and get out of bed in the morning. Weird. No wonder non recovering people find us a bit odd! The longer I am around, the more embarrassed I am to explain what I really think about things, because a lot of it sounds a bit weird. Oh well. At least my Sponsees understand where I'm coming from! I love the simple practical suggestions too though, but this esoteric 'stuff' plays an integral part in my mundane daily tasks as well.
- An Irish Friend of Bill
- I have recovered from the disease of Alcoholism. I believe there is only one person really,.. everybody. And that peace of mind is everything. -So treat your neighbor as you would treat yourself, because your neighbor IS yourself. I think most of recovery is what I would call common sense, but that learning to be ordinary is a true gift very few people acquire. My ambition is to accept everything unflinchingly, with compassion, and therefore be intrinsically comfortable in my own skin, no matter what. I am comfortable being uncomfortable and am willing to go to any lengths to improve my life. I believe the Big Book was divinely inspired, and is extraordinarily powerful. Unfortunately AA's best kept secret a lot of the time. (In my opinion). I just try to do what works, no matter what it is.
Saturday, February 03, 2007
The truth WILL set you free. Not MIGHT set you free
Posted by An Irish Friend of Bill
Labels: Basic principles of Recovery, God's will, Honesty
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I have to go to my fatrhers funeral tomorrow so I thought I would browse your site for some wisdom to tackle a difficult day. This post is beautiful and has reassured me my father truly has found the ulimate freedom.
It's all about meeeeee.......
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