Tag Archives: New Thought 12 steps

I met a delightful lady the other day. I was speaking at the Center for Spiritual Living Tahoe Truckee and in walked this woman dressed in purple, my favorite color. And she had on a hat! Also purple! I loved her presence immediately.

We had a chance to speak for a while after the service, and while we weren’t even discussing the topics of fear and faith, all of a sudden she asked me if I knew the acronyms for fear.

I responded with, “yes.” Then I asked her if she cared if I swore, because one of those acronyms is Fuck Everything and Run. She didn’t care, as I knew she wouldn’t. But I’ve learned to ask, because some people are unhealed in this area.

Anyway, I also mentioned Face Everything and Recover.

And she agreed that those were good ones. Then she added one of her own: Frantic Effort to Appear Recovered.

I love that! But she didn’t stop there, because as most wise people do when in a conversation about fear, she moved on to faith. And she gave me an acronym for faith that I also loved. Find Answers In The Heart.

There you have it. To move from fear to faith, find your answers in your heart. Of course this means one needs to have both a willingness and an ability to go within and find those true heart answers.

I believe the steps to be a powerful way to do this. And of course, you know I’m going to take this opportunity to plug my book and the new Companion Workbook. You can purchase them here: http://karenlinsley.com/?p=14828

I hope you have a joyous journey to your heart space!

Today marks the three year anniversary of publication of the book!  That's pretty exciting to me.  I've been a published author for a long time, but I honestly never thought I would publish a book.  The writing of the book itself was easy, I had something to say and the words flowed effortlessly from my mind, through my fingers to the key pad.

It was the editing, design of the cover and finding a publisher that took some doing.  I did a self edit by running the manuscript through Microsoft Word.  Then I had some people read and edit the manuscript for me. A final check was made by the publisher, Balboa Press, but mostly, they checked to make sure I wasn't violating any copyrights and listed my sources properly.

I knew what I wanted for the cover, it was just a matter of finding the right kind of steps to photograph.  I wanted an illustration of a set of steps leading up through the clouds and into the sunshine.  I already had the background photo, just needed the stairs.  At the suggestion of another friend, I journeyed one day to Amador County, California, where my friend said there were a lot of stairs to choose from.  Sure enough, after wandering around for a while, I found the perfect set of stairs......they were leading up to a cemetery!  LOL!  You'd never know it by looking at the cover.  Once I sandwiched the two images together the stairs didn't look right.  I had the help of a graphic designer, who gave me the feedback I needed to get them the way I wanted them.

I also had to solicit some folks to write some cover blurbs, and I have to say I was so pleasantly surprised by what they had to say!

Then came the publishing.  Balboa Press kept me informed every step of the way, and sure enough, one day I woke up and there it was, big and bold:  my book for sale at Balboa Press and on Amazon!

Since the publication of the book, it has been translated into Russian for use in the Ukraine by Temenos Center for Spiritual Living.  I have traveled all over parts of the western United States giving workshops based on the book, and I'm currently working on a downloadable self directed course also!

And...now that I'm over the initial write/publish a book hurdle, I'm working on two more!

I’ve just had something serendipitous happen!

I get a texted daily meditation from a good friend of mine, who is also a New Thought/program person.  The other day she quoted Ernest Holmes and I loved the quote so much I asked her where she got it.  She said “365 Days of Richer Living.”  It is the daily inspiration book created from Holme’s writings.

I wanted to investigate this quote, because it so happens that Face Everything And Recover is my motto in sobriety.  See, I was paralyzed with fear when I first got sober.  I couldn’t drive in the snow, couldn’t talk, couldn’t do much of anything.  Fear was an overwhelming presence that took over my life.  And until I began working the steps, that presence had a lot of power.  The good news is that with each step, more of the fear went away.  By the time I got to steps 10 and 11, I was basically living a fearless life.

So....I went to investigate the quote, and discovered that the passage was written on my sobriety birthday, November 27.  Isn’t that cool?!?!?!?!

I love things like that!  They tell me that I’m on the right track.  They reaffirm my faith.

Here is the meditation, copied in its entirety, from “365 Days of Richer Living” by Ernest Holmes:

“TODAY my heart is without fear, for I have implicit confidence in the good, the enduring and the true. Fear is the only thing of which to be afraid. It is not the host encamped against us, nor the confusion around us, that we need to fear; it is the lack of confidence in the good alone which should concern us. Through inner spiritual vision, we know that evil is transitory, but good is permanent. We know that right finally dissolves everything opposed to it. The power of Spirit is supreme over every antagonist. Therefore, we should cherish no fear, and when we neither fear nor hate, we come to understand the unity of life. I put my whole trust in God. I know that the Spirit will gently lead me and wisely counsel me. I know that the love which envelops everything flows through me to everyone, and with it there goes a confidence, a sense of joy and freedom, a buoyant enthusiasm for living, a zest for life. “For all thy ways are ways of pleasantness, and all thy paths are peace.” I realize that fear is not Godlike, since it contradicts the divine presence, repudiates limitless love and denies infinite good. Therefore, I know that fear is a lie, a fraud. It is neither person, place nor thing; it is merely an impostor that I have believed in. I have entertained it so long that it seems as if it really were something, and it attempts to make me believe that two and two are seven, that the earth is flat and that God is limited. Today I repudiate all fear. I renounce the belief in evil. I enter into conscious union with the Spirit. I accept the good as supreme, positive and absolute. With joy I enter into the activities of the day, without regret I remember the events of yesterday, and with confidence I look forward to tomorrow, for today my heart is without fear.”

I hope you enjoy this little serendipitous moment as much as I have.

Thomas Moore: “If you need to demonize someone, your heart is blocked with emotional and spiritual plaque.”
Edwene Gaines: “No one can steal from you unless you are a thief. No one can cheat you unless you are a cheater. No one can gossip about you unless you are a gossip.”
Alcoholics Anonymous 12 and 12: “It is a spiritual axiom that every time we are disturbed, no matter what the cause, there is something wrong with us.”

While I love the quote from the 12 and 12, I have a major problem with the word “wrong.” There is never anything wrong with us. Never ever. However, the wisdom of the statement is true and strong. Anytime we are speaking in terms of them versus us, or gossiping out someone, or judging someone, or pointing the finger of blame outward to someone or something else, it is a signal. That signal is really a deep inner desire, on the soul level if you will, to address something within that wants to be brought out to the light, revealed and healed. In my daily practice of introspection, I watch for areas in which I judge others, or blame others, or am thinking in terms of myself versus them. That is separation and duality at its worse, and it will harm no one but me. When I find those things, I know it is a signal for me to stop and take a look at myself and discover what is going on that needs changing. This is usually about behaviors or ways of thinking that I developed early on as defense mechanisms. The only problem is that there is no longer any need for defense. The circumstances under which the behaviors and ways of thinking developed simply don’t exist anymore. Those ways of thinking and behaviors are now simply limitations. And we argue for them when we continue them. Stop arguing for your limitations. Use the daily practice of introspection to become aware of those thoughts and behaviors which would hold you back, and change them.

This is the latest entry for the daily meditation book that I am writing.  If you would like to be a part of the creation of this book, and have access to things the general public doesn’t see, I would love your support!  Go here to check it out.

Register here!

The phrase "expectations are premeditated resentments" is very popular in 12 step circles, and just about anyone I've ever spoken to who is a member of a 12 step program believes this statement to be true.  In fact, they think it makes life easier to believe that they should not have expectations.

But in New Thought, the teaching is a bit different.  In New Thought we are taught that not only should we expect good in our lives, but we deserve it!

So which is it?

Join me for an exploratory journey to find out.

Do you believe that expectations are premeditated resentments?  I posted this question on Facebook and you would not believe the responses I received!  Obviously this is a hot topic!

So much so that I've created a workshop around it!  You should attend this workshop:

  • If you believe in the statement
  • If you believe in it but feel as if there may be some built in limitations there
  • If you don't believe in the statement
  • If you want to explore some other ways to think about things than what is "normal" for you.

The timing of this workshop is not an accident.  I purposely scheduled it for just before the holiday season because I know there are many people who tend to have some expectations about the holidays, and I know that sometimes those expectations are not met.

Plus, this workshop has a bonus:  two ways to restore or create some sacredness into your holiday season...we will explore gratitude and rebirth within us during the last portion of this workshop.

Three hours, $25....that's the commitment I am asking of you.  In return, you will get knowledge and skills that will last you a lifetime.  And you won't even have to leave the comfort of your home to attend!  Register and I will email you the link to attend the class via Zoom.  Zoom is very much like Sype, only a bit easier to use.

I hope to see you there!

Register here!

I was speaking with a mentor the other day about the phrase "Let Go and Let God."

I confessed to her that I had absolutely no idea how to do that but I knew what the results were when I was able to do it;  peace, absence of resentment, forgiveness, no more attempts to control.

Sounds nice right?  But how do we get there?  Especially if, like me, you are a New Thought person and have a god which is more inward directed than outward.  In other words, it isn't a god somewhere out there in the sky, but more of a "great reality deep within" kind of god.  How do you let something do something when it is a part of you?  How do you separate the action from the consciousness?

For me, this particular resentment stemmed from my own attempts to control.

Doing a 10th step definitely helped me, and following up with sharing my results with my mentor helped more.

In my book I talk about steps 6 and 7 as a process of enlarging my connection with spirit, replacing that which does not serve with something new, and asking for help.

For this particular resentment I knew that I needed to quit judging and love them unconditionally.  I began to do that and immediately began to feel better.  I also knew that I needed to keep the boundaries I had set......as I do not feel safe around the person on my resentment list, and I am continuing to do that.

Somehow, the combination of unconditional love, no judgement and taking care of my own needs so that I feel safe has resulted in that feeling of peace that I so wanted in this situation.  To me...that is letting go and letting god.

What is your experience of this phrase?


Purchase the book at Amazon or Balboa Press, or directly from the author.

"Whenever you take an adversarial attitude towards something you give it power."  Dr. Christiane Northrup

The first step of just about any 12 step program wants us to admit that we are powerless.  For many, whether in New Thought or not, powerlessness is simply not something that is done.

New Thought teaches us that we have power over our thoughts and beliefs and emotions, and that what we think tends to manifest in our lives.

For others, powerlessness signifies some type of weakness.  How many times has the average alcoholic heard someone tell him that if he were stronger he could control his drinking?

The reality is, we do have a lot of power, but it is misplaced power.  We give power to the substance.  We give power to people in our lives.  We give our power up to all sorts of things:  possessions, jobs, busyness.  And I would venture to say that if we really stopped to take a look at what we give our power to, it would be a love/hate relationship.  We love the temporary escape the subtance provides, but hate the consequences.  We love all our possessions, but it really complicates lives.  They say busyness is a status symbol, but how come we are so tired all the time?

So we move through life living out of congruence with our true values, giving power to something we really don't believe in, because we think there is no other way.  And in the case of substance abuse, we can't fight it, because we've given all our power to it.

Eventually there comes a time when something has to give.  Something has to change.

So we go to a 12 step program and it tells us the first thing we must do is declare our powerlessness.  This goes against everything we've ever been taught, and goes against most societal value systems.  It also goes against New Thought teachings.  And because of these values and teachings, we instead create an adversarial relationship with whatever it is we are having problems with.  Instead of helping, this simply gives it more power and takes more away from us.

So now we find ourselves between a rock and a hard place.

What's a person to do then?

I advocate a different way of looking at the first step.  In my book, I've reworded it to say, "We admitted we were ready for a change in our lives."

If you find yourself unhappy, overwhelmed, consistently worried, experiencing stress related health problems, or unable to accomplish what you wish in your life, you may be ready to admit that a change is necessary.  The good news is that you get to decide what to change to!

In the next blog post, I will speak to this in more detail.  You can sign up to receive notification of new posts at the right if you are on a computer and at the bottom if you are on a device such as phone or iPad.  You can purchase the book here:  http://karenlinsley.com/?page_id=1174#!/A-New-Thought-Journey-Through-the-12-Steps-book/p/70971359/category=0


Copyrighted photograph by Image Angels Photography Services

I've been thinking.

Sometimes that gets me into trouble, but sometimes....it is highly productive.

Lately I've been thinking about how life sometimes just kicks us in the ass over and over again.  Those of us who have a strong foundation of the steps under our belt can usually handle such beatings with relative ease.  After all, look at where we have been, and we survived that didn't we?

But have we really handled it?  Have we really moved on?  And what is UP with the repeated beatings anyway?  This is not some sort of "the beatings will continue until morale improves" situation! Or is it?  From a New Thought perspective, the overall trend of our thinking tends to create what happens in our lives.  So....if we have had a lifetime of drama and trauma, even if we have a good foundation in recovery, what is to stop that tendency from continuing to happen?

Turns out there is a lot.  The appendix at the back of the AA text defines a spiritual awakening as a personality change sufficient to bring about recovery.  To me, that suggests that such a personality change is possible.  Inevitable if we do the work.

In New Thought we like to say that we change our thinking to change our lives, and Ernest Holmes puts it like this:  "Man’s experience is the logical outcome of his inner vision; his horizon is limited to the confines of his own consciousness. Wherever this consciousness lacks a true perspective, its outward expression will lack proper harmony. This is why we are taught to be transformed by the renewing of our minds."

And there have, and continue to be, many scientific studies that say that our brain chemistry changes because of all that early trauma and drama, but that there are things we can do to change it.

I don't know about you, but when science and spirituality both say that we can effect deep and lasting change within ourselves to live happier lives, I believe it.  And I believe that such deep and lasting change means we are no longer subject to the regular beatings, because something within us has declared, "I am done with that kind of life."  It reminds me of a tiny little awakening I once had, when I was a kid.  Someone told me that my mother was a strong woman, she could handle this.  "This" being the latest dramatic trauma.  And I remember thinking, "I do not want to grow up to be strong like that.  I don't want to be known as the person who can handle that kind of stuff."  Today, I think we can be strong...and not attract that kind of stuff into our lives, simply by doing the inner work necessary to effect deep and lasting change within us.

Then there is good old fashioned faith.  I was chatting with a person recently who was lamenting that her daughter was a tweaker (addicted to methanthetamine) and she was worried because she thought no one could ever come back from that.  She said she took a lot of comfort when speaking with another person who said, "I was a tweaker, and I came back."  This is faith.  When we haven't had the experience, but others have.  We can draw on their faith.

So, faith, inner work, action, repeat.  This is how we change our lives for the better.

"We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it."  AA textbook

"Never limit your view of life by any past experience." Ernest Holmes

Statements such as these teach us that we should not base our current lives on what happened in the past.

It is tempting, I know, to look at something that happened in the past and tell ourselves that we will never do THAT again, because look what happened!

If we do so, we limit our future.

What if instead we looked at the events of the past as stepping stones to our next greatest and highest good?

All those shitty things that happened are not something to be ashamed of.  Shame and guilt only keeps us in the problem.  Fear and attempts to prevent it from happening again only keep us in the problem.

Instead, try to view it from a different perspective.  If we look at those things as necessary for our greatest good, then we can thank them, do our grief and forgiveness work, and move on.  This is why this particular promise is stated after completion of the 10th step in the textbook.  There is work to be done before we can stop blaming ourselves for past events.

In New Thought, we are taught that God is everywhere present, all good, all the time.  This means not that we should put our heads in the sand and declare that all that bad stuff was really good.  It means that we take a look at it and glean the nuggets of wisdom from them; therein lies the good.

So...we take a good look at our past, without shame and blame and condemnation, and use it to move into our greatest good.

How has your past served you?  I would love to hear your thoughts.


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Today, I came across one of my most favorite Ernest Holmes quotes in the Science of Mind textbook: "trained thought is far more powerful than untrained, and the one who gives conscious power to his thought should be more careful what he thinks than the one who does not. The more power one gives to his thought—the more completely he believes that his thought has power—the more power will it have."

I was about 10 years into recovery when I re-discovered New Thought, something I had been briefly exposed to when I was a kid.  I was on a search on behalf of the 11th step, because where I was at in my life was not satisfactory to me.

This concept of training my thinking was appealing to me, because at the time my mind was a very dangerous neighborhood.

Untrained, my thoughts will take me to depression and all sorts of other unpleasant places.  Trained, I am happy and at peace.

How does one train their thinking?  The 11th step suggests prayer and meditation.  I happen to think those are great suggestions, except that I define prayer in a different way.  Prayer traditionally is about a beseeching to an outside entity.  I like the new thought definition better: prayer as inner knowing and then affirmation.  Couple that with meditation, which is nothing more than focusing the mind, and you have a formula for living life on a firm foundation of trained thinking that leads to happiness, peace and joy.

How are you doing in training your thinking?  I'd love to hear about it.


Purchase my book a New Thought Journey through the 12 Steps here

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