Endigar 533 ~ Building a New Life

From September 3rd’s Daily Reflections;

We feel a man is unthinking when he says sobriety is enough.   (Alcoholics Anonymous, page 82)

When I reflect on Step Nine, I see that physical sobriety must be enough for me. I need to remember the hopelessness I felt before I found sobriety, and how I was willing to go to any lengths for it. Physical sobriety is not enough for those around me, however, since I must see that God’s gift is used to build a new life for my family and loved ones. Just as importantly, I must be available to help others who want the A.A. way of life.

I ask God to help me share the gift of sobriety so that its benefits may be shown to those I know and love.




This contribution to the Daily Reflections has a little bit of a religious hijack in it, when the contributor says that he must be content with “physical sobriety,” when only thinking about his own life.  The only time he is justified in wanting more out of life than abstinence from alcohol is when he can reason that others will benefit.  This is the martyr’s approach to AA and it runs counter to the reality that alcoholism is a primary disease and not a criminal conspiracy.  I feel religious shame is inappropriate.  I can gain permanent physical sobriety without the 12 steps by committing suicide if that was my only goal for my life.

This program is not for those who need it, but for those who want it.  This is a selfish program, meaning that its success hinges on the alcoholic having a good sense of self-preservation.  I want this life first of all, for me.  Then I have something to give to others.  So, I agree that a man is unthinking when he says sobriety (abstinence) is enough for others or for himself.

“He is like the farmer who came up out of his cyclone cellar to find his home ruined. To his wife, he remarked, ‘Don’t see anything the matter here, Ma. Ain’t it grand the wind stopped blowin’ ?’ ” (Alcoholics Anonymous, page 82)

There is one qualification to my assertions here.  The disease may not be my fault, but it is not the fault of those that love me or who have invested in my life either.  I must take responsibility for the damage my disease did to others and thus help in their recovery where I can.

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