From the BlogMeet Ron


“Alcoholism is a grievous and often fatal malady of the mind and body. We have found that these awful conditions invariably bring on the third phase of our malady. This is the sickness of the spirit; a sickness for which there must necessarily be a spiritual remedy. We AA’s recognize this in the first five words of Step Twelve. Those words are: ‘Having had a spiritual awakening…’ Here we name the remedy for our threefold sickness of body, mind, and soul.”
Bill W.
The Language of the Heart, p. 297
“When the spiritual malady is overcome,we straighten out mentally and physically.”
Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 64
Vernon Howard’s  SECRETS OF LIFE (R)
“Suppose you drive your car all over the nation from California
to Maine because that’s your business. You make lots of stops
wherever you go and make your business contacts. And everything
is fine except for one thing. At a certain point, the car that
you thought you could rely on begins to break down. It squawks and
sputters and goes out of commission. Here you have to pull off
to the side.
And it seems — oh, you remember this what I’m telling you — it
seems to correct itself, right? It seems like the crisis in that
car is over, and then one day you’re way off in the Badlands of
South Dakota in an isolated area, and the car that you thought
had corrected itself breaks down again, and there you are way
out there.
And you already know the first lesson, don’t you? How many of
you are trusting your present life and nature to get you
through it all? Has it broken down this morning? You know it has.”
from a talk given 8/12/1988
Can He now take them all—every one?
In doing Step Six it helped me a lot to remember that I am
striving for “spiritual progress.” Some of my character
defects may be with me for the rest of my life, but most
have been toned down or eliminated. All that Step Six asks
of me is to become willing to name my defects, claim them
as my own, and be willing to discard the ones I can, just for
today. As I grow in the program, many of my defects
become more objectionable to me than previously and,
therefore, I need to repeat Step Six so that I can become
happier with myself and maintain my serenity. 
Love is within us. It cannot be destroyed. It can be ignored.
To the extent that we abandon love we will feel it has abandoned us. 
Denying love is our only problem, and embracing it is the only answer. 
Through the power of love, we can let go of past history and begin again. 
Love heals, forgives, and makes whole.
Ernest Holmes

The point is that we are willing to grow along spiritual lines.

Ask, and you will receive; seek, 
and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened.

 “You are not a drop in the ocean. You are the entire ocean in a drop”
 – Rumi


ACIM Workbook Lesson 155 Insights
“I will step back and let Him lead the way.”
This lesson is comforting and inspiring to me as it challenges me to strengthen my commitment and focus on walking the way to God. After reading through it I felt uplifted and assured that I do not walk alone. I always have with me a mighty Companion and Guide, Who always guides me on the way to truth. My only job is to follow, not lead, not decide on my own what to do or what anything means. I felt inspired to accept the challenge to redouble my efforts to be mindful of my thoughts and attitudes.
The path to God is a path of peace and happiness and unlimited Love. It is surely worth the effort to pay attention to the diversions I have given time to and identified with what interferes with my awareness of the path of joy that leads to God. The choice for truth is more clear and illusions are a bit more obvious to me. The choice becomes easier and easier as I am more willing to let Him lead the way.
I am also reminded this journey brings with it a responsibility, but not a burden. The responsibility is to all my brothers along with me, for we share one Self. As I walk to God and become more and more aware of His unifying Love, I become more aware of the Love that joins me with all my brothers. As I walk the journey, I cannot help but share what I have learned and am learning, because it is in the sharing that I strengthen it in my own awareness. Each time I share, I feel stronger.
My Light is brighter as I see the Light in my brothers grow stronger. The Light has always been there and never changes. But as I release myself from illusions of separation from the Light, from illusions of darkness, I become more aware of the everlasting Light that is my Source. Today I hold Holy Spirit’s hand and let Him lead the way to show me what is true and real and give me His strength to lay aside the childish toys of illusion that do not serve me. I walk to God.
Learning to step back takes willingness, practice and patience. It takes remembering what I have learned in the past means nothing. It means letting the Holy Spirit take over the reins. It means not deciding what anything means on my own. I have found this to be quite challenging at times.
Many times I do not even realize I have retaken the reins and have returned to deciding I know what something means based on what I’ve learned before. As soon as I notice it, my job is again to step back and move into a place of openness and receptivity to the Holy Spirit. In that quiet place the Holy Spirit is always there, waiting for my willingness to step back again. Holy Spirit is the bridge that returns me to my true Self. But to get on that bridge, I must be willing to step back, open my mind and be receptive to the truth.
This world is an illusion. My experience of this world depends on what I am looking for. If I am looking for separation, being an individual and having a private “life” where I make decisions on my own, I will find it. If instead I am looking for a return to God, a return to oneness, a return to eternal Love, the way will be made for me to find it. This is my decision. What I seek for I will find.
If I choose to return to my Source, to God, I must learn to step back. I must learn all that I have learned in the world means nothing. God’s laws are not the world’s laws. God’s Mind is the opposite of this world’s thought system. I must be willing to let go of all the world’s false ideas. This is what I find when I practice stepping back and not trying to make decisions on my own. The Holy Spirit always waits patiently for my return.
Because the Holy Spirit knows this world is just an illusion coming from the false ego mind, It just smiles when I think I have a problem. As I ask that my thoughts be purified, all the distress just seems to fall away. What was in turmoil now becomes calm. Worries are quieted. I am able to see each situation differently. Only God’s united Love matters and what does not matter is not my concern. All is well. There is nothing to fear. It feels like I have been lifted up and have been allowed to see the Love behind the illusion. This is so comforting and reassuring. The truth is true and nothing else is true. All is eternally safe. All is well, no matter what appearances made up by the ego look like.
The real world is always there waiting for my willingness to see it. All is safe. All is well in the Mind of God. When I am willing to step back and let Him lead the way, this is what I am shown. I am shown the Reality behind illusions. I am shown there is nothing more important than being willing to do this more and more each day as I walk along the road of return to Him.
I walk to the music of God. God sets the rhythm. God sets the melody. I walk in step with it as I follow the music. God goes before me and I walk in that flow of harmony and love. God leads the way to God in perfect harmony and order, at just the right pace. The great dance of love and creation, each step as graceful as a ballerina in perfect balance, each step light, airy, vibrant. Yes, I walk to God today with a heart full of joy and tenderness, skipping to the beat of the way home. The melody encourages me to continue and the way seems easier as I follow it. Yes, today I walk to God with God’s music leading the way. There can be no greater joy than this. Every step is confidently filled with love, joy and peace. Every step is filled with grace and gratitude.
My goal today is to have that more frequent smile, the serene forehead, the quiet eyes this lesson speaks of. It’s only with commitment and dedication to this course that I have the awareness this goal is possible to reach. And it is by this same commitment and dedication that I have learned the only way to reach this goal is by stepping back and allowing myself to be led.
I never realized before that I learned to accept and adjust to discomfort in my life. But today, even though I still have uncomfortable moments, I’m learning not to judge situations, but instead to step back. And even though I don’t always “hear” the answer, I’m learning not to come to any conclusions by myself. Sometimes I’m not sure where I’m being led to, but I know it feels good and only gets better if I just trust.
© 2003, Pathways of Light.
You may freely share copies of this with your friends, provided this copyright notice and website address are included.
All life is a school of experience that points in one direction: 
Paramahansa Yogananda 

Rumi, Hafez, Omar Khayyam and the Global Artistic Perspective
Major artistic movements, form, mature and grow in clusters of time and region. Whether it’s the American jazz movement, or the great European classical music composers, Impressionist painters, Italian post WWII neorealist filmmakers, British Rock invasion bands (which were inspired by the American blues) or in this case the Persian classical poetry. Without an exception all major, global, highly creative and intensely demanding artistic movements are a product of a very specific cultural vibration set within a particular time and geography.
The Persian classical poetry movement is not an exception and follows this natural flow quite precisely.
When an artistic movement is formed, a whole universe of activity starts to buzz around it. Enthusiast groups are formed and special viewing areas or performance halls are built. A structure of trade forms around these movements, whether it’s art dealers, publishers, record and film producers, distributors, agents, managers and collectors. A system of training and education also shapes to support these movements; meaning as the art form grows so does the understanding and appreciation of it. And the training structure allows the young to aspire to become the next big players within these creative fields.
Although poetry has been immensely popular in Persia (and today’s Iran) for over a thousand years (or in forms much earlier), what we commonly refer to as the Persian classical poetry movement in essence lasted about 400 years (about 1000-1400 CE) and produced many great poets. However, only three of which are globally recognized: Rumi, Hafez and Omar Khayyam. In fact some might argue that Khayyam in the height of his popularity in the West was more known than today’s Rumi. As far as I know Khayyam is being quoted on at least three major studio Hollywood movies of 1950s and ‘60s, the Music Man, Pandora and The Flying Dutchman and Payton Place. And there is also a biopic “Omar Khayyam” (1957), directed by William Dieterle (Portrait of Jennie, Elephant Walk, Salome…). These movies represent the very popular aspect of American culture. In contrast, except for an episode of the HBO series Six Feet Under, Rumi references are basically non-existent in American pop culture.
Since the English-speaking world appreciates Persian classical poetry through translations, the personality of these literary giants and the unique style of each poet is often ignored or morphed together to form an endless stream of brilliant verse. However, their work in the original Persian language is quite unique.
In the original Persian, Rumi and Hafez are as different from each other as Miles Davis and Dizzy Gillespie. Hafez (1315-1390), who is undoubtedly the most popular of all the Persian classic poets in his homeland of Iran, is the true Persian word-meister. He has an immense grasp of the language, with a very distinct fluid style, that is often embellished with great care. The poetry of Rumi (1207-1273) by contrast is akin to Miles’ expression of Jazz, in many ways minimal, direct, honest, personal, soulful and masterful with a clear lack of embellishment. However, Hafez translations in English are often indistinguishable from Rumi, and this is of course expected when any great literary work is read through translation and interpretation.
Nevertheless, the beauty, grandeur, majesty, poetic craft and wisdom of these great beings come through not only in the original Persian language but in the English translations as well.


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