My son asked that if I had time would I please read the book “The Four Agreements”. He said it was short and was not specifically written about addiction but had great meaning to him and felt I might find benefit in reading it. The Four Agreements reveals the source of self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love. He and his sponsor indulge themselves in spiritual readings and thoughts that go much deeper than anything I’ve sought to understand. I know when his mom and I visited his sponsor while in Florida, I was totally lost in some of the people they referred to who were mostly ancient philosophers from foreign religions and practices.
He was raised a Catholic but seems to find more of what he is seeking spiritually in the ancient readings regarding what the true meaning of life. He was not an avid reader yet today has volumes of books dealing spirituality. He has had sponsees and shares the readings in hopes they might provide help towards recovery.
I would not change his mind in any manner. He is on his journey to find happiness and anything that helps him is his choice alone. I know as I got older I found fault with some church teaching but having studied theology and other religions I never gave up the existence of God. I still pray every night. I have for most of my life and even more so with addiction coming on board. Addiction will most certainly give you good reason to seek spiritual guidance and help. It may be the only reason I go to sleep at night.
After he suggested I read The Four Agreements, I purchased the longer in-depth version of the book. I know that he and his sponsor follow the ancient philosophers with regard to a spiritual definition of God and what life is all about. I am a layman in terms of the wisdom of teachings by these learned individuals. I will read and no doubt read again this book to try and grasp what he has found to help guide him on his journey.
As I’ve said numerous times I have not followed the steps earnestly nor do I believe I have been on a spiritual journey. I think my healing has come directly from his journey. He is successful because he is seeking a spiritual reason for life itself. When we have our long conversations about our addictions, I hear how he has changed mentally in his general thinking and how he sees everything around him at this moment. Myself, I have a fixed focus on finding forgiveness for my actions against both of these sons.
I think as people use the Twelve Steps as a basis for helping, they put all their energy into following the suggested procedure. If you step into the world of the ancient philosophers, then you will need to step outside what is reality in my mind and learn an entirely new way of thinking. This world of thinking and living life outside what most of us consider normal is complex and I have no idea how he has managed to understand. The fact of the matter is that he is gaining strength and understanding by studying the concept of life as taught by these learned individuals.
As I said I am a layman and even with my own religious beliefs taught over the years have doubt especially those facts we take as faith. He would define faith as agreement to something we’ve been taught and we accepted which is now our belief through faith. I am much older and my mind is already cluttered with doubt for years of teaching me right from wrong. It may be too late for me to try and comprehend this type of thinking. I may find it as difficult as, probably more difficult as the Twelve Steps.
One thing I have definitely learned this past year is to be open minded and listen. I have been guilty for years in interrupting conversations with my own thoughts regarding almost any subject. You’d think if I put my own thoughts into what my life was about I’d be perfect. It would be exactly what I see and want as happiness. This is foolish and I know my life has not been happiness. I have no real spiritual understanding such as he is starting to find.
He and his sponsor have mentioned books and philosophers and their thinking and leave me with a blank stare. Maybe I need to at least investigate further the Twelve Steps and the spiritual teachings of some of these ancient thinkers. I guess my life has been molded by “agreements” I should have never made. I’ve taken little to no time to examine what makes my personality and why I behave as I do. He is young and because of his addiction has laid aside a great deal of time to get better. He is using this time wisely to gain understanding of who he is and what he seeks for happiness in himself and those around him.