Friday, January 25, 2008

The newish movie Zeitgeist says 12 disciples of Jesus=12 zodiac constellations around Sun. Now after seeing it, I am meeting people who say that the Bible is an astronomical allegory. So here's another number 12 tie in: the 12 Step Movement. Have you encountered this huge network of people, supposedly inspired by the spiritual teachings of Carl Jung?

Jack Kerouac: Does a duck have Buddha-nature?

Werebrock: When through the 12 steps of quackery I morph into a duck, I won't care and then

JK: What's that you say, grass hopper?

Werebrock (suddenly pounces and grabs something in the dirt with his new bill) Quack!

In a circle it goes around, call and response rhythm 'verbing around 4 circuits of chairs.



"Hi Patrick!"


"Hi Bob!"

Like Godzilla's rumbling tread we shout. We're in this church basement on Saturday morning, we've checked a lot of our identities at the door, and we're focused on the patterns of unpleasentness in our lives and how we bypass them with faith in a higher power. Venting out frustration to people who listen but ain't beholden to your head trip like's done in these 12 step groups, it can be a free lunch for the people who care for you, cuz you've got more attention to focus on the finer things in life while you're with them.

I've heard people say that this is an evil cult, for it coerces people into thinking they're under the abstraction that drives religious people to act counterintuitively. Yet does a plant grows towards the sun without confessing that the sun is above them, and I am experiencing a populous, international movement, organized anarchistically for self-improvement- freedom of choice by freedom from habit. I'll be back next week.


Anonymous said...

It's interesting you write this now. I have noticed myself drinking an inordinate amount when I'm not in the woods. I blame the beast I live in the heart of at this moment, but yes, the true beast lives inside us all.

Yes, this sixpack is the last for me, o noble savage. Even though I am not a savage by blood, still I won't allow the firewater to disconnect me from the pain of the great spirit. I'll check back in about a week to touch base on this with you.


Bjornbloodhand said...

When was the last fuckin' time Bjorn Bloodhand made it into a blog?

Hakim Baker said...

Well, I didn't think about the 12 steps being related to the 12 zodiac signs, but I know someone who's into astrology and A.A. who would love the idea ... or who has probably already figured out the details.

Of course, any group of people is prone to groupthink, subtle head games, and so forth that can stifle prevent or shunt growth ... but according to the two or few people I know who've been involved with such groups, it provides a safe place for them to question everything they've been taught to hold true, and that alone is very important. That such groups can and do help people get out of their dysfunction traps is even better.

I love that it's a decentralized nonhierarchical cooperative mutual aid movement that never heard the circle-(A) word. Over the years I have marveled many times at this.

Ever hear of co-counseling? Someone told me about that once, sounds sort of similar maybe.

Good to hear from you, O virtual Shadow!!

abby lives in said...

ahoy bjornbloodhand. :D

yay AA! they rhyme, bitches.

my sister was telling me the history of AA, of how it began as a church thing, then these guys started having home meetings to get away from the religious doctrine, and that's just great for these folks. they need plenty of room to breathe, to talk, to bitch, to cry, to mope, to smoke and drink coffee, some to sit on the beach and watch the sun rise, some to eat dinner together, some to have celebrations, and some to just sit still with some other peeps.

i'm more and more liking the idea of a sort of quaker meeting, or the little house books sundays where everyone just sits and does nothing, no talking or anything. just contemplation. with other people. and you can talk if you want, but mostly you just chill in the space with others.

deb said...

They claim to attract rather than promote...then "push" their pamphlets everywhere and "strongly urge" service work using fascist fear tactics. (ie, if you don't follow the *suggestions* you WILL drink again)

They claim an upside-down organizational structure which sounds good in theory. Sit back and watch the power struggles "down" the ladder all the way to NY. Follow the money.

Yes, it all began as a church thing. Many, I repeat *many* are still intent on converting your sorry ass. Non-theist philosophies are frowned upon throughout the org.

Cult? I vote a strong "yes". The whole idea is to make individuals feel hopeless and powerless without THEM.

Disease? No. It's a habit... real bad with some. There are better ways of curing habits than holding hands and chanting about your supposed powerlessness. Yes, yes...I know the steps are supposed to be worked. But the steps are theist-based and diminish personal responsibility.

Make no mistake. This is big big business with very questionable results. Courts and rehabs are happy to supply a constant stream of new recruits.

More info about this religious cult than you would ever care to read is at orange-papers dot org

Good luck.

shadowcrrew said...

Inter'sting that this post triggers responses.

hackmatack- homebrew (with us Cincinnatians, on Thursday nights, if you'd like) and you'll never be so out of touch with your alcoholic beverages as to abuse them. that's not a promise, though, just a prediction.

Bjorn's new music blog is -- check it out, he's got interesting tastes

Hakim, I've heard of co-counseling. Thinking about it now, cuz I've felt some stress, naturally coming with all this group/movement work we've been doin' here lately. FNB etc. 'parently you're not supposed to know the person you're sessioning with, which gives you some healthy distance from your partner's problems. the RC community here seems to consist of my Dad and two of our mutual friends, so as a result haven't tried it.

orange papers said one of the dudes who started AA was trippin' on Belladonna, which is hilarious because we're gonna grow a bunch of those deliciously deadly nightshades starting here pretty soon.

Abby/Mike: Quaker-ish contemplativism is something you all practice a fair amount already, is it not? i know you sit around and open your skulls to the cosmos w/o saying much pretty regularly, and it seems like at MG, whenever we'd philosophically come into conflict it was a result of me not having done that as much as you have

Deb: right there with ya. Church is craziness. 's far as AA workin' with the Prison Industrial Complex to siphon off people for activities that are explicitly theistic- of course i have a problem with that shit. i don't condone it and haven't given any money (yet) which could possibly be used to do such shite.

on the other hand, i'm finished sticking up for atheism. theurgy has been useful to me. to the degree that i choose to be, i am god and can do whatever suits me, which means the lack of personal responsibility is out the window. when you say that God is inaccessible to humans as opposed to part of us and everything else, that's when you get into the powerless zone.

thanks for the well wishes :) sorry for being out of contact

shadowcrrew said...

and BB's music blog is