I recently changed my morning reading habits a bit. For the past few years I’ve been depending mostly on meditation books that were broken down into relatively small pieces, and reading other inspirational (or whatever) books in larger chunks.
This year I picked out two books in addition to the one I’ve been using for a couple of years–books not laid out in a daily reading format–and determined to treat them the same way, taking them in small, easily digestible chunks and then meditating on those readings, instead of trying to cram my head full as has been my habit for most of my life.
I read a few pages at most, stopping at what seems a reasonable point. Sometimes I read only a few paragraphs; on one occasion, only a couple of sentences. I find that I’m getting far more out of the basic text of one of my fellowships, for example, than I ever got when reading a chapter at a time. Cutting it into small chunks makes it far easier to digest and see how it applies to me. It seems that I do better with less to think about, rather than more; with small ideas, rather than big chunks. (In fact the eating/chewing/digesting analogy seems to fit perfectly, now that I think of it.)
This leads me to a problem that I’ve had with “big book” and similar meetings since back in the Dark Ages. Continue reading →
A meditation is a train of thought that we ponder, looking beneath the surface for hidden or deeper meaning. It’s fun to discover what can be found by a minute or two of thought, rather than simply sharing a catchy phrase on social media and then moving on to the next ephemeral idea. Enjoy!
“The change begins when you realize that you can never get enough of what you didn’t want to begin with.”
I got married the first time because it was expected that I would when I reached a certain age. It was a lousy match, and ended in divorce — for good reasons. (I got two wonderful kids from that marriage and I don’t regret it at all, but it wasn’t exactly my choice — more a matter of the path of least resistance.) Continue reading →
We exist only in the present, and we need to learn to live in the present. We can’t affect the past, and we have no way of knowing what effect we may have on the future. We need to do our living today, concentrate on the present moment — on doing the next right thing — and let the future take care of itself. If we are always thinking about tomorrow, next week, next year — the next raise, romance, promotion or what have you, we are unlikely to do well at work, love, or life in general.
Every change we make in our lives affects the future, sometimes in big ways, and sometimes in small ones. I can’t know whether failing to buy new shoelaces today will result in a dangerous fall tomorrow. Continue reading →
Recovery is about change, but there’s big change and small change. Sometimes we get them confused. For example, we may realize that our program isn’t quite going the way we’d like. So we look for a new book to read, find a meeting that “suits” us better, look at a new fellowship, find a new sponsor — maybe even get a new job or move into a different halfway house, a mini-geographical cure.
This is small change, and it may even help for a while, but it’s not Big Change. Our small change may give us knowledge and temporary satisfaction, along with the excitement of something new, but it’s more like running in circles than progress in recovery.Continue reading →