Wisdom and Truth: Looking Inside is Part of Sobriety

Welcome to our discussion based on Joe C.’s Beyond Belief: Agnostic Musings for 12 Step Life. We post choice quotes from the daily reading, as well as the discussion questions, and encourage you to think on it and respond in the comments. Please keep our community guidelines in mind while commenting.

“Prajñāpāramitā” translates as “the perfection of wisdom.” The problem with The Truth, if we are seeking it from an outside source, is that there are so many versions of it. Looking for guidance is wiser than going it alone, but to expect the answers of life to be granted from an outside source is folly. Like pursuing substances or processes to fill our void, the idea that the truth is “out there” is never more than partly true. Clues and direction can come from outside sources but our journey in life involves finding our own truths. The Truth may be a moving target because, like the world around us, we are changing.

….We hear in the fellowship that it’s a “we” program, not an “I” program–we don’t have to do this alone. But the reason the program works only for those who want it, not for all who need it, is that each person needs to do the work: write the lists, muster the courage and face the truth about him or herself. No one will check to see if we’ve done our Twelve Step homework. If we do the work, we find enlightenment. Suffering is met with perspective instead of avoidance. We gain wisdom–it isn’t granted. We accept the world as it is. We have power to help ourselves and others but not unlimited power.”

Discussion questions

  • Am I waiting for something or someone?
  • Do I take responsibility or do I delegate blame and wait for direction?

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