Thoughts of Recovery No 17 The Spiritual Malady Step 1
The spiritual malady is the result of my being out of order with my higher power who I choose to call God. I was the director in the drama of life and managing the world so I could get what I thought I needed to feel ok. Fear and resentment dominated my thoughts and I made decisions based on self which caused me harm and harmed others. This is the type of spiritually maladapted behavior that we typically exhibit in active alcoholism. When not treating the spiritual aspect of the disease those behaviors are the types of things that will start to make life unmanageable once again. Without a connection to a higher power, it can get quite ugly in sobriety. Is describing, essentially is referring to a stark void in our lives that we constantly attempt to fill with outside things such as drugs, alcohol, sex, shopping, or anything we can think to try to feel better.
You have no class. Instead of enjoying this moment for what is, a wonderful moment for these families and your fathers administration, you have to politicize it. You have a spiritual malady and a deficit of character.
It was like a emotion web that ensnared one in increasingly frustrating states of emotional distress and inappropriate responding. Finding out what is really going on with us emotionally is at the heart of recovery. That is why we have to constantly share how we are feeling with others so that we can find out what we are feeling. So we have two main ailments, distressed based wanting which results in the same negative emotions as being in a shame- based fear of rejection. But when it comes to alcohol and drugs, there is no will power. The reason is that our reaction to alcohol and drugs is physical, it’s not mental. Step 1 in the AA programme is “ We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable”.
Recovery is a Journey
I dealt with them externally via addictive behaviours, not internally via emotion processing. This mesh of negative emotions can link up fairly instantaneously I find. It is the web my spiritual malady seeks to ensnare me in. It is emotionally healthy to live in the day … in the here and now. Professional therapists teach people to live in the present. AA encourages members to share their experience, strength and hope with other members.
I am not only fearful I have reacted to their arrival via shame based defence mechanisms and reactions.
The pursuit of them dominated our lives, destroyed relationships, and caused greater desperation than we ever thought possible.
No one is perfect at first when attempting to live a spiritual life, especially when we are coming back from a long spiritual hiatus.
In these situations, I feel further from God than normal and then I wonder who moved me or God and the answer is always me.
Thanks for your post, it made me go back to reading something I had put off for a while.
I have found this a fairly common trait among male alcoholics in recovery settings and meetings. This is why we need a satisfactory definition of what alcoholism and addition is? Rather than describing these conditions in terms of the manifest symptoms, i.e chronic substance abuse or, at times, vague “spiritual maladies”. In order to illustrate how I believe my spiritual malady is the consequence of my emotional disorder, called alcoholism/addiction first let’s go back to where this idea of spiritual malady came from. He said, “spiritual simply refers to that which is not material. This means those things that what is a spiritual malady are not solid- such as our thoughts, our beliefs, our emotions- are what is spiritual. When we say that alcoholism or drug addiction is ‘a spiritual malady’, it means that our disease in centered in these things . So if you find yourself getting caught up on the spiritual nature of recovery, don’t. It really isn’t that difficult, and the beautiful thing about it is that it’s intensely personal and can be understood in any way you see fit. Just be open to the fact that besides being physically sick with addiction, you are also spiritually sick and as such, you need a spiritual solution to your problem.
What is a “Spiritual Malady”?
My inventory showed me also that I did not seem to have the facility previously to emotionally respond to the world in a mature way. It shows the areas of behaviour and attitudes that can be treated by working the steps. It shows us how our approach to life can possibly be transformed for the better. I have for several years wondered if the spiritual malady described in the Big Book adequate or accurate enough in describing what I suffer from.
It lists the following as symptoms of a spiritual malady. Review suggested gender-neutral language options for changes to the AA Preamble. This item was not acted on by the Grapevine committee, since they felt they needed more direction regarding wording. However, a couple of Floor Actions at the end of the Conference did address a change to the Preamble. The desire chip, also known as the One Day or 24 Hours chip, is used to help the member pursue their desire to stay sober for the first 24 hours. This one features a single, simple butterfly on the front and the Serenity Prayer on the back. Exposing abuse under the guise of BDSM & related reflections on self-recovery. Otherwise we have not really completely treated our alcoholism.
Some of us have this knawing feeling of not being good enough, have a hole in the soul which we are/were kinda always unconsciously trying to protect, shield from the world. Some of us are “people pleasers”, what is a spiritual malady some of us are dismissive towards others. It is all manipulating our interaction with others to our selfish ends. How do you prepare for life after treatment, and what kind of help do you need?
Is it true that once an alcoholic always an alcoholic?
Treatment and Recovery
The saying “Once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic” exists because recovery is not an easy process, and it can sometimes take years to find a methodology that works and is sustainable for an individual; there are often relapses that take place on the road to recovery.
This same obsessive nature causes those with a substance use disorder to instinctively seek other things for relief from their thoughts. Often, before ever using a substance, they were bright students, picked up hobbies that they were able to develop into amazing talents or ambitious employees that were able to vertically ascend with ease. The motivation that drove most of these positive outcomes, however, was typically relief from their low self-esteem or otherwise painful thinking. Once turning to substances many of these people struggle to maintain the same focus on the other priorities they had. As an alcoholic I have found I needed to grow up mentally and emotionally and I agree with the idea of emotional dysfunctionality which I believe is caused, probably, by past trauma or attachment issues. This means that I have hyper-sensitivity and can be over-reactive but I do not believe that I am in any way spiritually deficit. This is a Judea-Christian belief structure of bad versus good and I believe that I did not join AA to become good but well. AA may have started within the Oxford Group but has gradually moved away from their tenets. The disease of alcohol and drug addiction is not just mental and physical but also spiritual. The spiritual malady, however, can be seen as an inward unmanageability.
There is a physical allergy, a mental obsession, and a spiritual malady that all must be addressed for successful, long-term recovery. No methodology that we are aware of addresses and relieves all three areas at once like the 12-Step program. In fact, this method is so effective that it has been adapted to provide recovery from a large number of other diseases and ailments. The “spiritual malady” of the Oxford group seems enhanced in me, I believe I sin more than normal people because of my emotional immaturity and reactivity. My “loss of control” over drinking is also linked to emotion processing difficulties as it prompted impulsive, uninhibited drinking.
Once we are aware of these feelings we can begin the real work on ourselves. It is not easy to do so but recognizing this aspect of alcoholism forces us to take an honest look in the mirror at our behaviors and attitudes towards life and other people. If we do not get spiritually connected with meditation or prayer with a power greater than us it will bring us closer and closer to that drink or drug. In sobriety, if we are self-reliant we usually end up using anything that will make us feel good externally excessively. It simply means we are spiritually blocked off from the Power of God, which enables us to remain sober, happy, joyous, and free. Many people are initially turned off to the idea of the program because they believe it preaches religion and God, and many addicts and alcoholics have no desire to pursue a religious answer.
As best as we can tell, this method is crucial to helping alcoholics and addicts recover. Alcoholism and addiction is a disease, but not a typical one. The physical allergy, mental obsession, and spiritual malady will be with the sufferer all their life. In most cases we have seen, it is only the psychic change and spiritual experience that are sufficient to keep the sufferer in recovery, working the program, and staying recovered.
We can also see this as years of not being able to regulate our negative emotions properly, if you wish to see them as sins. The 12 steps were influenced by the Oxford Group who said sins cut a person off from God, and that there was such a thing as sin disease. Everyone in recovery has secrets they would rather not disclose, but there are not many “original” sins as one suspects and that haven’t been shared in 12 step recovery. I got as far as deciding it was an inherent problem with processing negative emotions, which it is. Just as revealing where the negative emotions listed which clearly showed how I react, and can still react to people who I believe have caused my hurt or rejection. Hence when I came into recovery I had hundreds and hundreds of resentments swirling around my mind, poisoning my thoughts and sending constant emotional daggers into my heart.
Any promise of finding true freedom from this malady other than Jesus is a false gospel . This gospel message is not foundationally built on what steps we take to be reconciled to him but rather what steps he has taken to rescue us from sin. In love, Jesus entered Sober Home our chaos, became like us to lead us out. As this gospel of grace captivates our hearts, we are reborn – given new hearts – which reorders our worship and redirects our lives. A certain American business man had ability, good sense, and high character.
Therefore I didn’t understand that I was suffering from a spiritual malady until I’d had the spiritual experience that gave me the physic change (all words in bold I’ve checked with the dictionary). The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous discusses many steps that are involved in the recovery process. Rule 62 in recovery refers to the rule of dont take yourself too damn seriously. Someone in recovery doesnt always realize that they can relish their life again without the use of alcohol. It is not just the 12-Steps that we work diligently and deeply.