Step 12 starts with “Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps…”. The AA “Big Book” speaks of “a spiritual experience” as a key to recovery. What's going on here? Do we have to have some sudden “white light” experience to truly be in recovery?
Both traditions answer, firmly, “No.” The Big Book says, simply, “Most of us think this awareness of a Power greater than ourselves is the essence of spiritual experience.” Al-Anon's book How Al-Anon Works affirms that “more commonly … we experience a gradual awakening of the spirit”.
I found meaning in the story of the Buddha, who, shortly after his enlightenment, was questioned by a person he encountered on the road if he was a god, a wizard, a man? To which he responded, “no”. When the man asked “Well, what are you then?”, the Buddha said “I am awake.”
In this episode, 4 people describe a spiritual awakening or experience from their lives.
Readings and Links
We read from
How Al-Anon Works, Chapter 8, Step Twelve.
Alcoholics Anonymous, Appendix II
A listener wrote about the Al-Anon book Having had a Spiritual Awakening, and how it led him to a gentle awakening.
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