350,000+ babies are born each day and, since only 150,000+ people die, we are crowding and eroding the blue planet home we share. UNESCO forecasts a global population of 8-10 billion by 2050 – two billion is a pretty fat range – but, what matters is not how many we are, only whether we are sane, capable, responsible, generous and loving. Can mankind, as a species, practice restraint and cultivate a self-respect that accords respect for billions and billions of others? Can we shed the binary, zero-sum math of win vs. lose, succeed vs. fail, advance vs. retreat, us vs. them, me vs. you to embrace multiplying masses of others? Are we doomed?
In the current noxious and perilous atmosphere, I find my mind fraught, my emotions on edge and my spirits sinking into an irritating malaise. A pall settles over my daily life in recovery, and an anger rises from it that drains my serenity and incites rage, even hatred toward the haters who enflame fear and resentment toward “enemies.” How can my recovery and my faith animate my soul and rouse my spirits as an antidote to the toxic miasma?
The tenth step cautions that “it is a spiritual axiom that every time we are disturbed, no matter what the cause, there is something wrong with us.” The tenth step offers an intimate reckoning of our attitudes, motives, behaviors and all their consequences. We may apply any number of yardsticks: the deadly sins, the decalogue, the golden-rule, great commandment, or our personal inventory via steps four through seven. Scripture, spiritual writings, and recovery literature all open paths of reflection, contemplation, and self-examination. We have tools aplenty and we have priests, counselors, sponsors, and friends to raise our ability to apply them to good purpose. We discipline ourselves to grasp and grapple with the gifts and graces we receive – turning our will and our live over to the care of a Loving God as we encounter Him. And, we encounter him most vividly in all those many, messy, maniacal, and miraculous others.
Each day, we are given a rebirth in sobriety within the community of our families and friends, within the coterie of recovery, within the social web, and within all of human society. We, among all, know the ravages of fear and resentment; we above all, know the cost of investing our lives in any power equation not grounded in acceptance, generosity, grace, and love. Each day, we embrace a new life that leads us away from the certain demise of our addictions. In recovery, we are called to manage the noise and master ourselves, as we strive toward unity in the Source of Unconditional Love. We recover out of God’s Love for US. All of US.