By A Grateful Member of RIU
Consider the ideas that we are whole and complete because of our Oneness with the Source and “being in Recovery.” Confusing, and kind of conflicting, right? How could I be recovering from something when the Absolute Truth is I cannot be sick? As someone who had done recovery work since the tender age of 15 and had been in Unity 12 years, I hardly knew what to think. But I found both 12-step groups and the Unity principles to be key elements in my life. And when I found RIU (Recovering in Unity) over 4 years ago at Unity of San Antonio, I hoped to find the answers from someone.
What I discovered? Well, I found this to be a common question. Additionally – I discovered there is no one size fits all answer. But, – I could find the answers for me. Because I am not separate from the Divine, I have access to all the Wisdom I need to discern this. Because of the nature of the group, with our essence being that of Oneness – there were multiple ways of accessing this Wisdom! Meanwhile, I was absolutely inspired, and discovered innovative ways to use both Unity and Recovery principles to live the Truth of who I am. Why, you might ask? Well, because of the nature of what is shared in our group.
Someone who is not familiar with 12 -step groups might assume they are a place where people express some pretty depressing stuff. And what good positive-thinking Unity person would set foot in such a room? UCK, right? The truth is what is shared in recovery work is encouragement, strength, and hope. I think if more Unity people realized this, people would be knocking down the doors and our RIU meeting would need a bigger room! The focuses of our meetings are Unity Principles, the 12 Powers, or one of the “12 Strides of Intentional Living.” We share how they have helped us, in a heartfelt and authentic manner, with the promise of anonymity. That’s it.
You don’t have to identify as someone who is recovering to attend, nor is anyone shunned for identifying as being “in recovery.”
Wait, you might think – 12 Strides? I thought it was called “Steps!” There are recovery steps, and we in RIU are profoundly grateful for them, those who penned them, and the groups that use them. But one of our greatest accomplishments as a group this past year was to metaphysically interpret the 12 steps, though a series of step meetings and via the group consciousness. We call them the 12 Strides of Intentional Living.” And here they are:
With gratitude for the original 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous (www.12steps.org), the following is a metaphysical interpretation of those steps:
The 12 Strides of Intentional Living
- We admitted we felt helpless about our circumstances and powerless over the habits we developed to cope. As a result, we seemed disconnected from the Source of Power and therefore from our Infinite Self.
- We began to understand that the Source is not separate from us; the Source is the truest Infinite Self, and as we attune to the Source we recover our spiritual identity to live an empowered life.
- We made a decision to attune to the Source, reclaim our spiritual identity, and recover our inner power.
- We fearlessly and fairly identified thoughts, behaviors, and attitudes that have kept us feeling separate from the Source, the Self, and others. We compassionately identified our strengths and supports.
- We came to identify both patterns of thought and feeling that led to destructive acts, and personal strengths and systems of support. We shared these with ourselves, the Source, and at least one trusted individual.
- We became willing to release blame, condemnation of self and others, unworthiness, and other states of mind contributing to feelings of separateness.
- We activated the spiritual power of Elimination by prayer and meditation to release thoughts of unworthiness, separateness, and condemnation that have contributed to unhealthy patterns of behavior.
- Identifying those from whom we had separated ourselves, we then activated the power of Divine Love, the harmonizing, unifying power within ourselves and within people we have held apart.
- We asked for forgiveness, directly when possible, and through prayer and personal reflection when not advised to make direct contact with those individuals.
- We agreed to practice reflection, observing when and how our thoughts, words, and actions spring from feelings of separation; when we observe, we return our awareness to Oneness, taking action to restore harmony when necessary.
- We agreed to practice prayer and meditation to attune to the Source and draw upon inner Wisdom to guide our choices day by day.
- Having become more aware of our Source and Infinite Self, we strive to consciously practice these principles and encouraged others to do the same.
We don’t necessarily offer an alternative to other recovery groups, although some people might decide that’s for them. What I have found, is that RIU augments my recovery beautifully.
We meet Fridays, at 5:30 p.m. in the CommUNITY Center of the Unity Heights building at 8103 Broadway Street in San Antonio. All are welcome, we are an open meeting. There are no dues or fees. Sharing is not at all mandatory, you are welcome to come and simply listen. Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns.