Mary Pearl T on Step 12 – Episode 297

Step 12: Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to others and to practice these principles in all our affairs.

Join us for the conclusion of Mary Pearl T's workshop on the 12 steps. She clearly illustrates, with warmth and wit, how she understands and lives this step.

Readings and Links

Listeners wrote and called with reflections on these episodes:

The other Mary Pearl episodes are

Two listeners shared their own hope, strength, and experience on a question from an earlier episode, “What if my loved one never finds sobriety?”

Please add your sharing

Our 300th episode is coming soon. How has The Recovery Show helped your recovery? What episode touched you? Did you go to your first meeting after listening to us? Have you been a guest on the podcast? Call or send email with your answer to one of these questions, or to one I didn't think to ask. I'd love to construct our 300th episode from your voices.

Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email with your questions or experience, strength and hope.

Spiritual Awakenings and Experiences – 296

What was your spiritual awakening? What spiritual experiences have you had?

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.

Want to contribute?

Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.
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Do you Believe? – Episode 270

Do you believe all things happen for a reason?
Do you believe that God can do for us things that we can’t do for ourselves?
Do you believe in coincidence, or that there is no such thing as coincidence?

What “higher power moments” have you experienced? (Step 2 moments)
What happens when you view them as miracles rather than coincidences?
When have you said “I have no idea how that happened?” (and were grateful for it!)

Today, we're talking about miracles, coincidences, and belief. We share some of our own and some of yours. We might follow this outline:

  • Definitions of “miracle”
    • a surprising and welcome event that is not explicable by natural or scientific laws and is therefore considered to be the work of a divine agency.
    • a highly improbable or extraordinary event, development, or accomplishment that brings very welcome consequences.
  • Definitions of “coincidence”
    • a remarkable concurrence of events or circumstances without apparent causal connection
    • Scrabble points: 18
  • What miracles have you experienced in your life?
  • In your recovery (if different).
  • When you view a positive, unexplained event as a miracle instead of a coincidence, how does that change your experience?
  • How does it change you?
  • “When I seek, I find; when I look, I notice.”

Readings and links

Music and video clips

Miracle on 34th Street: clip “Susie Believes”

The Polar Express

The Loving Spoonful: Do You Believe in Magic

In all our affairs: Step 1 plus dementia – Episode 265

Let it go – autumn colorStep 12 asks us to “practice these principles in all our affairs”. This has led me to a new insight into how Step 1 is active in my life today.

In a recent meeting, we read the Step 1 chapter from our book Paths to Recovery. I had recently returned from visiting my parents. I suddenly realized that if I substituted the word “dementia” for “alcoholism”, that the step took on new relevance to my life.

I got a suggestion for a topic of miracles or maybe coincidences. How have you experienced miracles or coincidences as messages from your higher power? Big or small? Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email and share your experience, strength, and hope.

The producer of the podcast Recovered suffered a computer failure, and is asking for support to buy a new computer so he can continue to produce the podcast. If you have found value in Recovered, please consider making a donation at
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In All Our Affairs – Episode 201

Step 12 says “… we tried … to practice these principles in all our affairs“. It's easy to say but harder to do.

Al-Anon doesn't do me much good if I pick and choose where I'm going to put it into practice. Program works best when I embrace it wholeheartedly: give up my excuses, rationalizations, justifications,
and work to make the principles a part of my daily, hourly, life. (…In All Our Affairs, Al-Anon Family Groups)

How do we take these things we talk about in here and try to learn from the meetings, and actually use / apply them to life, every day, in every way possible? Not just with our alcoholic or addicts, but with the line at the grocery store or the dreaded dmv, the person who insults or acts unkindly toward us, cuts us off in traffic, acts rudely or with hostility or anger, or takes advantage of us….?

I “carry” a “tool box” full of Alanon Slogans and sayings, and a spiritual canteen of positive past results experienced for times when I need refreshment or reminders of these results, in Life, not in the rooms. My tools are kept lubricated by prayer and meditation, calls to my sponsor and fellow members, reading, listening on phone meetings, participating in the program in various ways through service, attending meetings, and carrying the message to others by example and attraction.

Some things I do differently now:

  • Asking for help.
  • Taking responsibility for my actions. (Not blaming the cop for giving me a ticket.)
  • Saying “no”.
  • Doing my part and letting go of expectations of outcomes.
  • Pause before I react. Slogans “THINK”, “How important is it?” are helpful.
  • Using “neutral responses” such as “That’s Interesting”, “Let me think about that”, “I hear you”, “you don’t say”, “that’s one way to look at it”, or my favorite “Ah-Ha” or “Oh”

Please call us at 734-707-8795 or email with your questions or experience, strength and hope. Or just leave a comment right here.

Continue reading “In All Our Affairs – Episode 201”