Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Casual discussion amongst spiritual friends.
danieLion
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by danieLion » Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:24 pm

Hi Viscid,
Viscid wrote:I'm not sure how important being technically accurate about Buddhist philosophy actually is when appealing to it in an attempt to recover from an addiction: your philosophy should be that which best supports your recovery. Alcoholics, I imagine, are desperate to find some philosophical stability.. and if they are alienated from the concept of God, then a quasi-Buddhism, which is less accurate but perhaps more effective than 'actual' Buddhism, would be of greater benefit.
I'm pretty sure, despite my best efforts to date, I've only approximated a technical accuracy of the Buddha-Dhamma, and I have serious doubts that such accuracy is possible.

The rest of what you said corresponds very well to my personal experience.
Kindly,
dL

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mirco
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by mirco » Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:34 pm

danieLion wrote:Recovery does not require sponsorship or exclude help from others who have no personal experience with addiction and recovery. We all have dukkha in common.
So, that means, you get along equally with anyone around you?
danieLion wrote:
MYTH 6: YOU SHOULD BE TREATED BY SOMEONE WHO ALSO HAS HAD AN ADDICTION....
To the extent that this has any merit, it would be because some people have trouble trusting anyone who has not gone through the identical experience....
From: The Heart of Addiction by Lance Dodes, M.D., pyschiatrist and Harvard professor)
Here it seems, he doesn't know much about addiction and recovery.

Having trouble trusting people is not a shortcut of some addicts, it's one of the fundamentals addiction (and personality disorders) is build upon.


Best Wishes,
:-)
"An important term for meditative absorption is samadhi. We often translate that as concentration, but that can suggest a certain stiffness. Perhaps unification is a better rendition, as samadhi means to bring together. Deep samadhi isn't at all stiff. It's a process of letting go of other things and coming to a unified experience." - Bhikkhu Anālayo

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mirco
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by mirco » Wed Sep 04, 2013 10:47 pm

danieLion wrote:
Naturally, it is good to hear of others' experiences, and when AA is helpful, mutual support is a major reason. But if you are seeking professional treatment, you deserve a lot more -- someone trained to help you learn what you need to learn about yourself.
From: The Heart of Addiction by Lance Dodes
working the steps is the trained help.

Best Wishes,
:-)
"An important term for meditative absorption is samadhi. We often translate that as concentration, but that can suggest a certain stiffness. Perhaps unification is a better rendition, as samadhi means to bring together. Deep samadhi isn't at all stiff. It's a process of letting go of other things and coming to a unified experience." - Bhikkhu Anālayo

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m0rl0ck
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by m0rl0ck » Wed Sep 04, 2013 11:23 pm

danieLion wrote:that sobriety is much more about self-reliance and self-control than the 12 Step model and its adherents are willing to admit.
dL

Having been sober more than 20 years this is one of the funnier things i have read today :) Thanks for the laugh. :clap:
“The truth knocks on the door and you say, "Go away, I'm looking for the truth," and so it goes away. Puzzling.” ― Robert M. Pirsig

chownah
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by chownah » Thu Sep 05, 2013 2:44 am

Different people learn different things in different ways. I learned this when studying Education at Uni. To the extent that different people who indulge in different intoxicants for different reasons need to learn something to control their indulgences is the degree to which different educational approaches should be made available to them.

Bottom line: There is no single approach that will work for everyone.......we need many different approaches available.
chownah

danieLion
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by danieLion » Thu Sep 05, 2013 2:49 am

Hi mirco,
mirco wrote:
danieLion wrote:Recovery does not require sponsorship or exclude help from others who have no personal experience with addiction and recovery. We all have dukkha in common.
So, that means, you get along equally with anyone around you?
Thanks for sharing. It might mean that, but it's not exaclty clear to me what you mean, and I'm not sure how you get that out of what I said. Could you be more specific? I like to think I generally get along roughly about the same with most but not all people around me, but not everyone equally. That would require over-generalized, either/or, all-or-nothing, inflexible, rigid and demanding thinking, feeling and behaving on my part. And those types of feelings, thoughts and behaviors relate to my experiences with addiction, so I prefer to attempt to keep them under control.
mirco wrote:
danieLion wrote:
MYTH 6: YOU SHOULD BE TREATED BY SOMEONE WHO ALSO HAS HAD AN ADDICTION....
To the extent that this has any merit, it would be because some people have trouble trusting anyone who has not gone through the identical experience....
From: The Heart of Addiction by Lance Dodes, M.D., pyschiatrist and Harvard professor)
Here it seems, he doesn't know much about addiction and recovery.

Having trouble trusting people is not a shortcut of some addicts, it's one of the fundamentals addiction (and personality disorders) is build upon.
I agree that trust can be an issue for those who have or have had addictions, and perhaps I have some shortsightedness here, but I don't see how you got that out of what the author's saying. Could you elaborate? And would you mind explicating what you mean by "the fundamentals of addiction" and detail your understanding of "personality disorders"? I might be wrong, but there seems to me varying degrees of views about addiction fundamentals. And again, I could be misinformed and/or mis-educated, but personality disorders are hard to substantiate empirically, especially with such imprecise measures like the DSM and IDC.
Kindly,
dL
Last edited by danieLion on Thu Sep 05, 2013 8:41 pm, edited 3 times in total.

danieLion
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by danieLion » Thu Sep 05, 2013 2:59 am

Hi mirco,
mirco wrote:
danieLion wrote:
Naturally, it is good to hear of others' experiences, and when AA is helpful, mutual support is a major reason. But if you are seeking professional treatment, you deserve a lot more -- someone trained to help you learn what you need to learn about yourself.
From: The Heart of Addiction by Lance Dodes
working the steps is the trained help.

Best Wishes,
:-)
I agree that working the step can helpful to some people some of the time. From my experience with working them and sponsoring those working with them, there are still parts I find useful. I could be wrong, but it seems to me like you're saying "working the steps" is the only type of help worth getting. Again, I might be misintepreting your statement, so could you be more specific?
Kindly,
dL
Last edited by danieLion on Thu Sep 05, 2013 8:47 pm, edited 2 times in total.

danieLion
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by danieLion » Thu Sep 05, 2013 3:02 am

Hi m0rl0ck,
danieLion wrote:that sobriety is much more about self-reliance and self-control than the 12 Step model and its adherents are willing to admit.
m0rl0ck wrote:Having been sober more than 20 years this is one of the funnier things i have read today :) Thanks for the laugh. :clap:
You're welcome. Experience with sobriety does have merit, so I'm interested in what you have to say. What exactly do you find so funny about it? I might be wrong, but the folks in SMART Recovery tend to think that powerlessness in those with addictions is not supported by their experience or research.
Kindly,
dL
Last edited by danieLion on Thu Sep 05, 2013 8:13 pm, edited 4 times in total.

danieLion
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by danieLion » Thu Sep 05, 2013 3:04 am

I agree with chownah.

danieLion
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by danieLion » Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:31 am

Hi all,
Please note that this link to my blog is currently not working as I've reverted the document to draft form for purposes of revision after reflecting on the comments made in this topic.
http://inthelion.blogspot.com/2013/09/t ... sm-12.html
Kindly,
dL

danieLion
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by danieLion » Thu Sep 05, 2013 7:21 pm

Blog back up: http://inthelion.blogspot.com/2013/09/t ... sm-12.html

I was being conflict avoidant; plus, I can always revise it later.
Kindly,
dL

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m0rl0ck
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by m0rl0ck » Thu Sep 05, 2013 9:03 pm

danieLion wrote:Hi m0rl0ck,
danieLion wrote:that sobriety is much more about self-reliance and self-control than the 12 Step model and its adherents are willing to admit.
m0rl0ck wrote:Having been sober more than 20 years this is one of the funnier things i have read today :) Thanks for the laugh. :clap:
You're welcome. Experience with sobriety does have merit, so I'm interested in what you have to say. What exactly do you find so funny about it? I might be wrong, but the folks in SMART Recovery tend to think that powerlessness in those with addictions is not supported by their experience or research.
Kindly,
dL
Most alcoholics before getting into recovery make multiple attempts to control or stop drinking and cant. They muster up all their willpower and self control and decide to "white knuckle it" only to find themselves drinking again. I made many such attempts myself and some invent elaborate strategies and rationalizations that fail time after time. Admitting that one is powerless over alcohol given ones own best efforts isnt something that people just decide to do, by the time alcoholics get to the first step of the 12 they have plenty of experience in being powerless to change by themselves. So what i found funny about it is the contrast between that statement and actual experience.
All of the theory and speculation by all the "experts" arent worth a dam compared to the experience of one actual alcoholic in recovery. If you really want to learn about alcoholism from the experts you need to go to a meeting.
“The truth knocks on the door and you say, "Go away, I'm looking for the truth," and so it goes away. Puzzling.” ― Robert M. Pirsig

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daverupa
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by daverupa » Thu Sep 05, 2013 9:11 pm

m0rl0ck wrote:If you really want to learn about alcoholism from the experts you need to go to a meeting.
Is it the case that experts attend, exclusively attend, and always attend, AA meetings? This can only work if you define an "expert" as an "AA attendee", which you're quite close to doing...
  • "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting oneself one protects others? By the pursuit, development, and cultivation of the four establishments of mindfulness. It is in such a way that by protecting oneself one protects others.

    "And how is it, bhikkhus, that by protecting others one protects oneself? By patience, harmlessness, goodwill, and sympathy. It is in such a way that by protecting others one protects oneself.

- Sedaka Sutta [SN 47.19]

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m0rl0ck
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by m0rl0ck » Thu Sep 05, 2013 9:25 pm

daverupa wrote:
m0rl0ck wrote:If you really want to learn about alcoholism from the experts you need to go to a meeting.
Is it the case that experts attend, exclusively attend, and always attend, AA meetings? This can only work if you define an "expert" as an "AA attendee", which you're quite close to doing...
:jumping:

Geez really? How cute.

EDIT: ok jsut in case you were serious, i would define as expert an alcoholic who has some years of good sobriety under his/her belt and who has maybe sponsored a few people. You run into people like that at meetings.
“The truth knocks on the door and you say, "Go away, I'm looking for the truth," and so it goes away. Puzzling.” ― Robert M. Pirsig

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Viscid
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Re: Problems with "9 Essays: Buddhism & The 12 Steps"

Post by Viscid » Fri Sep 06, 2013 7:22 pm

But can't it be said that someone who is submitting themselves to a 'higher power' is, in actuality, expressing self-control-- albeit using a new, radical psychological strategy to do so? They are necessarily convincing themselves that the agency responsible for their addiction (their 'self') is no longer in control, and that some greater entity (which in actuality is still their self, however it is now viewed unburdened by its historical poor decisions) is going to guide them towards sobriety. It's an effective, pragmatic self-delusion which can still be said to be the product of reason and self-control.
"What holds attention determines action." - William James

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