Counter-culture Journals (文革)

Counter-culture Journals (文革)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Back from Happydale--Off To AA

Excerpts from The Journals Of A 21 Century Schizoid Man;

Journal 29;

It was my day to go home. I was ready. I wanted to get back to work. I had plans to see my psychologist for counseling on regular bases and psychiatrists who planned to meet me for my medication. I felt like I was on the right road again and hoped I could a little better than I had.
I was surprised when Ida and Chopper came along in Ida’s car to pick me up. As we drove to my house, chopper said; “It’s great to have you back, Mark.”
“You said it Chopper,” Ida agreed.
“Wait minute,” I protested. “Ida, are you seriously telling me you can hear Chopper talk?”
“But no one can hear him talk but me. I’m not even sure he really talks at all. I just kind of assumed our speeches were hallucinations.”
“I’m telling you Mike, I can hear him talk the same as you,” said Ida. “Maybe we are having the same hallucinations, Maybe I’m having the same one you are.”
“That’s amazing. I never thought I would find someone who can understand Chopper except me.”
“Maybe we have more in common than you realize.”
It was great to get home and I and It was nice to be with my two best friends, Ida and Chopper.
“Since you have been drinking on that medicine, I think you should start going to a local AA chapter,” Chopper suggested.
“What do you know? Besides they believe in all the “higher power stuff” and I just really don’t like religion.” 
“You told me you’re an Epicurean,” Ida said. Instead of a god for a higher power, why don’t you try to use your Epicurean beliefs as a higher power?”
“OK. I’ll give it a try, as long as I don’t have to go to one where someone is pushing Christianity on everyone.”
“They have chapters all over town,” Ida said. “I’ve gone so some before. I’m a Wiccan. Some people are Buddhists. Others are Taoists. I’m sure if you check out enough AA chapters you may find one you are comfortable with.”
“OK,” I agreed. “You guys win. I can’t believe I’m taking advice from a dog.”
“I’m not a dog,” Ida said.
“I didn’t mean you. I suppose you know a lot more about AA groups than Chopper.”
One thing I decided to do was be more friendly and open to people. We all see things differently and some time trying to listen to others is worth the effort. I even went over and visited the Crab Grass King. I really didn’t care about his goals in life, yet just listening to him and trying to get to know him better, seemed worth it. I started looking up some of my other friends I hadn’t seen in a while also. Once I got home I decided I was going to try and be more open minded about the people around me, with the exception of the rat breeder who lived next door to me. She was a hopeless bitch.

AA Meetings;

I went to an AA meeting called re-new. I went to the 8p.m. meeting, which wasn’t too bad. There were two people running the meeting
The first said they had been alcoholics and addict and “I  needed a new and trusting God of my understanding that I could depend on.”
 There was a young girl there, Rachel and she said “My sponsor told me that my God could allow tattoos and colored hair.” She added, “I realized I could choose a God that fit with my lifestyle. I didn’t have to change everything just because I wasn’t drinking.”
“He didn’t have to be someone else’s version of God,” she said. “You can choose the god of your nature, one that goes along with you, not some judge mentalist person you had to pick as some people chose to do”.
I did notice there were a couple of young non-believers there, so I felt right in. There were some people who said the group at the AA meeting was their higher power. But also, there were people who finally accepted God as their higher power.
One young man I listened to wanted to use Buddhist meditation. That was the closest to a non believer I met. But he and the girl he knew stopped coming. They may have found a different place to go, but I just don’t know.
Most of the people there had found some type of God to pray to, rather whether they started going back to church, while other just prayed to God at least twice a day.
Naturally it is a 12 step program. The first step is easy; all you have to do is decide you are powerless over alcohol. Then there is the sponsor. They play two roles. They try and help you keep from drinking when you get the urge. That part was easy. But they wanted us to do an inventory of ourselves, good and bad. We had to find a sponsor we could do that with. I trust few people, especially being a hard core Marxist where few people even knew what that means.
So although I have gone to the meetings off and on for a year, I have never found a permanent sponsor. Also, I finally decided that my Epicurean philosophy would be my higher power. I thought about Taoism or something similar, but I fully understand Epicurus and I can always revisit the book to remind myself what is more important than my drinking.

For a while I wasn’t going to school so I went to the noon AA meetings. That was not as good. Many of the people were old and retired. While I liked some of the people who went there, it got annoying when the older people how AA was a spiritual program and developing spirituality was a major part of the program.
There was one man who borrowed the Alcoholics Anonymous big book, then got out his Bible.
“I believe these two books are inspired by God and that is the only way to really use them.

When I was at Happydale, I ran into Rachel. She warned me that those noon meetings where the ones that the older people, who are more religious at those meetings.
“We were pretty mellow at the evening,” don’t you think?
“Yes,” I answered. She also provided me with some other AA programs I might try that I would like better.

In Kansas Christianity is hard to avoid—even on public property

This is typical of people who live in certain parts of the US and certain parts of the world.
There are still those religions that are incompatible with progressive change. Fundamentalist opposes evolution and they are outright hostile to a scientific outlook. It also promotes bigotry against homosexuals and religions outside of Christianity. They oppose left or liberal religions as if they were devil worshipers. This type of religion has to be challenged and opposed at all times. 
One thing we need to do is read and understand the Bible as well as the fundamentalists do. When they suggest that homosexuality is denounced in the Bible, we need to point out that the Bible also suggests we smash the heads of babies of our enemies during times of war and rape women captured in areas we take during war. We have to point out that believing in a book and its ideas is not the same as taking every word literally without question. There are parts of the Bible that are outdated and we need to point that out. Many religions don’t use the Bible as a reason to attack homosexuals, so we can make a distinction between progressive Christianity and conservative fundamentalism rather than arguing that Christianity is simply wrong.

While there is a lot of discrimination against non-believers there is also discrimination against non-Christians. Buddhists, Wiccans and Moslems have as much difficulty fitting in as do the atheists and agnostics.
Not long Ago I worked as a substitute teacher and I had to take my class to a pro-military assembly.
There were all kinds of poems, skits and even prayers. Yes prayers were read in a public school, which is not even constitutional.The worst part is that is a middle school and these students are way too young to question what they are being told. This is nothing more than military indoctrination and a promotion of our militaristic and imperialistic foreign power.

The school system provides, free of cost, “in God we trust” signs for any teacher that wants one. It is illegally promoting religion, but the school board just didn’t care.
The event was put on mostly by the “cadets” from the “leadership Class,” that is nothing more than an indoctrination for the US military and our perpetual wars we fight in other people’s countries. The students even wear military style uniforms from time to time. It is unlikely that these students are ever told the inhabitants of the countries we invade are usually very poor compared to us. And what do they repeat over and over; “Freedom isn’t free,” or “these brave people protect your freedom.” Of course this implies we need people to fight all these wars to protect our freedoms and the freedoms of others, which is an outright lie. No one is protecting our freedom by the military and those who’ve taken part in the Occupy Movement know that only too well.


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