Buddhist Steps Towards Sobriety

by Metta Jon Maslow

1.  We admit that we have, up until now, been ineffective in our
attempts to overcome alcohol/drugs/other dependency—that our
lives have become unmanageable.

2.  We come to understand that the Dhamma/Dharma * can guide
us, so that we can bring ourselves to live sane, peaceful, happy, and
purposeful lives.

3.  We will make a decision to conform our will and our lives to the
Dhamma, to try to live in harmony with the Dhamma.

4.  We will make a completely thorough, honest self-examination,
regarding our thoughts, words, and deeds (kamma/karma).

5.  We will admit to ourselves, and to at least one other person, the
exact nature of our unwholesome, negative kamma/karma.

6.  We will be prepared to acknowledge our personal responsibility,
and recognize that it is within our power to transcend our self-imposed
limitations.

7.  With humility and honesty we will diligently strive to cultivate
positive lives and let go of negative thoughts, words, and deeds.

8.  We will recollect all persons that we have harmed, including our-
selves. We will be willing to make amends, to forgive others, and to
forgive ourselves, as well.

9.  When possible, we will make amends to others directly, except
when doing so would cause harm.

10.  We will continue to practice self-examination, being mindful of
negative, unwholesome thoughts, words, and deeds. We will continue
to be honest with ourselves and others; and we will continue to strive
to live in harmony with the Dhamma.

11.  Through study and meditation, we will seek to increase our under-
standing of the Dhamma, to cultivate the confidence, determination,
knowledge, and wisdom to live in harmony with the Dhamma.

12.  We will practice the principles of these steps in all of our affairs,
and will try to convey the message of the Dhamma to others through
the example of our lives.

* Dhamma/Dharma = Truth, Reality, Nature, Natural Law, the Way.
Dhamma is Eternal Truth, and as such, does not belong to any one
religion or philosophy. To live in harmony with Dhamma is to live
in harmony with Natural Law. To have Right Understanding is to see
life according to Dhamma, to understand things as they really are.

Note: these guidelines are for private use only, and are not to be distributed for profit.
Content is neither authorized nor endorsed by Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc.

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