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A Fresh Look At The 12 Steps

1. We Admitted That We Were Powerless Over Alcohol - That Our Lives Had Become Unmanagable.
This is a statement of recognition that our little will, driven by our ego, which in turn is driven by fear, has been controlling our lives. With this awareness comes the realization that our ego is not the best guide to have. When our lives don't look the way we would like them to, we know that our ego is responsible.

2. We Came To Believe That A Power Greater Than Ourselves Could Restore Us To Sanity.
We now are aware of the small, quiet voice which has been consistently speaking to us from deep within our Hearts. This is the "voice" of Soul. Soul is the communicator between our little self, and our highest Self - our God Self. The wisdom and larger perspective which our Soul offers us is always for our highest good. The Soul is based in Love, not fear.

3. We Made A Decision To Turn Our Will And Our Lives Over To The Care Of God, As We Understand Him/Her/It.
This is a declaration of surrender. Giving up the control of ego for the guidance of Soul. When we remember ourselves as God, as creator of our every experience, we can take responsibility for our lives. This is the opportunity to listen only to Soul. There is always the challenge of the ego's influence over us. But if we stay committed and focused on Soul, it will always guide us impeccably through all situations. This is an action of extreme Trust and Faith. It takes patience and persistence to practice this surrender to our highest guidance, Soul.

4. We Made A Searching And Fearless Moral Inventory Of Ourselves.
This is a commitment to clear out all unfinished "mommy/daddy" business. To thoroughly and deeply search for times in which we followed our ego in harmful ways; in greedy ways; in destructive ways. It is an opportunity to understand the ego's role in our lives and gain greater clarity as to why we choose not to be under its control any longer.

5. We Admitted To God, To Ourselves, And To Another Human Being The Exact Nature Of Our Wrongs.
This important step of admitting to the harm we've done to ourselves and others is vital in clearing away the old egoic energy. The use of the word "wrongs" implies judgment. God, (which we are) never judges us for our actions, thoughts, or feelings. If we can move into a non-judgmental mode of examining our past, we can clearly see where we want to make changes from this time forward. It does not serve us to move into guilt, remorse, or shame. We can simply move into clarity and the higher Consciousness of Soul. It is with Soul's guidance that we choose how we will be from now on.

6. We Were Entirely Ready To Have God Remove All These Defects Of Character.
Again, this is a step of surrender to that higher wisdom of our Souls. "Defects" once again implies judgment. We are not here to judge ourselves. We simply want to make changes that feel better and work better in our lives. This is a step of forgiveness, as well. To forgive ourselves for our past and to vow to ourselves that we will not repeat it.

7. We Humbly Asked God (Him/Her/It), To Remove Our Shortcomings.
This reaching out for help goes along with our ability to receive that help. Our Soul has never judged us in any way. It simply watches our progression through life and the decisions we make for ourselves. The word "shortcomings" (just as in earlier wording) implies judgment. The truth is, we have neither defects nor shortcomings. We do have an ego that thrives on drama. We also have a Soul that gives us every opportunity to change our decisions. To make new decisions which will better serve us. Therefore, this step is asking for recognition of those parts of ourselves we would like to release and replace with other choices.

8. We Made A List Of All Persons We Had Harmed, And Became Willing To Make Amends.
This important step allows us to release guilt and take responsibility for ourselves. It gives us the opportunity to humble ourselves and be very honest in our dealings with others. It encourages rigorous honesty with ourselves, as well, and gives us a tool for releasing guilt, shame, and blame. To clean the slate, so to speak, so that we can move forward, without holding onto the past.

9. We Made Direct Amends To Such People Whenever Possible, Except When To Do So Would Injure Them Or Others.
Once again, a clearing step. To actively "make right" that which was out of integrity. All actions we have ever taken are in Divine Order. They all had great purpose, just the way they were enacted, for our Awakening. In our vow toward greater integrity and impeccability in every moment, we are asked to clearly communicate with others our sorrow for our harm. We pledge to live our lives differently, more consciously, from now on.

10. We Continued To Take Personal Inventory And When We Were Wrong, Promptly Admitted It.
This step encourages us to continue, relentlessly, our in-depth introspection of our egoic energies.

"When do we come from that place of fear?"
"Why do we not stay lovingly present, no matter what it looks like out there, or inside of ourselves?"

This step allows us to create even greater awareness and recognition of when we are out of alignment with our Soul guidance (pure Love and Wisdom).

11. We Sought Through Prayer And Meditation To Improve Our Conscious Contact With God, As We Understood Him/Her/It, Praying Only For Knowledge Of His/Her/Its Will For Us And The Power To Carry That Out.
This step brings it all together for us. A reminder to keep that connection to Soul open and active. In full Trust and Faith listening to Soul's guidance and following without hesitation what we are told. Soul IS our connection with God, (which we are). We are encouraged to release our little will (ego) and follow our God Will (Soul). Just as the Bible passage suggests, "Thy Will Be Done".

12. Having Had A Spiritual Awakening As The Result Of These Steps, We Tried To Carry This Message To Alcoholics, And To Practice These Principles In All Our Affairs.
We are encouraged here to "walk the talk" and through our Soul/Being, role model another way to live our lives. In honesty, from that authentic place of our true nature, Love. We carry this message through our thoughts, words, feelings, actions, energy, and Being. This does not mean to preach or use coercion to get converts. We simply exemplify these principles by example. We consistently demonstrate the Truth of our Being, Love.



For further reading on a particular subject found in this writing, please click on a topic heading below:

Awakening Change/Transformation
Ego God
Soul/Being Truth


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