7 | Inventory

So…having taken the steps to engage the process of Recovery in earnest, we have seen that the initial requirement is a rigorous exploration of the events of our past lives in the addictions. This “fearless inventory of ourselves” is meant to bring into consciousness the full extent of our disease, in all of its aspects.  We take inventory, try to understand the full extent of our disease and who we hurt in the travesties of our “acting out,” and then work to repair such travesties where we can.  The final steps, outlining the requirements of a continuing life in sobriety, provide a road map for daily living.

These final steps, though, are critical.  They require, first, that we keep the work of admission, belief and surrender foremost in our minds; that we remember what it was like and how far we have come; that we know the debt we owe to those we stomped on in our days of acting-out and those who helped us in our early efforts to recover; and that we know our obligation to pass on what we have learned to others.  And in doing so, in following all these dictums, we slowly begin to see that a life in Sobriety really can be a “Promised Land.” 

What might this look like?  In our life in Sobriety to this point, we may have developed a Community of like-souls, a true Fellowship of Recovery. Living and feeling at home in this Community begins to fill us with a sense of profound gratitude and love.  While the work to stay connected still must be done, and a constant vigilance maintained against the pull of the disease deep within us, the peace and serenity of our new-found place in Sobriety begins to feel almost ethereal.

Joseph Campbell called the core elements of Mythology a “song of the universe, music so deeply embedded in our collective unconscious that we dance to it, even when we can’t name the tune.” This seems to be what we find in our individual and collective consciousness in Sobriety…a deep, beautiful “Song of the Universe.” 

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