12 steps and the Red Raod

Fall at Bear Creek

Patrick’s Blog.
The west direction and the slow descent into darkness is the time to both forgive ourselves and learn from silence and solitude. Attaining mastery over anything requires this “hero’s journey” – the descent into our darkness. From my surrender to alcoholic insanity and learning to lend a hand, AA taught me to discern the difference between lending a hand and giving a handout. By loving and forgiving ourselves first, we learn the noble truth of it is in the giving that we receive.

The fall is learning and practicing fire tending. How to warm up and slow down. We first learn to tend our soul’s fire. Learning and practicing nurture. Step seven of the 12 steps is “we humbly asked spirit to lift our barriers to love.” I can’t “fix” myself. Humility is seeking to deflate falseness and surrender the past. I love the words from the healing song “Pacha Mama” – “There’s no high, there’s no low, there is nowhere you need to go, just inside of you is a star, saying just be as you are. We carry the light into the darkness.
Acceptance is the key to all of our problems. the soul tending is going into nature to heal. Going into the silence and darkness is what Grandmother bear and the trees are teaching us in late September. Nature is wearing her coat of many colors as she reminds us to go within. We had a great sweat lodge and prayed to the stone people to lift our spirits by letting go of the toxic poisons, anger, and underlying tears, opinions, and beliefs we have ingested.
We line our lodge with cedar boughs on the earth. The stone people and the cedars can take our rage and anger and transform them. When we clear the belly of self-defeating beliefs, we access our heart’s songs. From lead to gold. From rape into a noble passion – gratitude, hope, kindness, and love of life and art. Living a life of heart and meaning means following what has heart and meaning.

The drum, drum making, and drumming have taught me that. Together we can do anything. United we stand, divided we fall. Take down your barriers and let the emotions flow – letting go of worry and doubt and remembering the words of great teachers like Maya Angelou: “It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive. Forgive everybody.” And that begins with me.

All is well and all will be well.

9 thoughts on “12 steps and the Red Raod”

  1. Thank you Patrick. That was beautiful. Forgiving myself and slowing down or two things that I must remind myself of continually. I love you my friend.

  2. Love everything about Cedar Mountain Drums. Lovely sentiments in your blog Patrick. Will be contacting you to see if you’re having a drum making retreat in 2020. Thank you.

  3. Thank you for these beautiful words. As a fellow member I especially liked your words on the 7th step – “we humbly asked spirit to lift our barriers to love” “we humbly asked spirit to lift our barriers to love” … The “barriers to love” feels so much better than shortcomings or character defects! Do you have interpretations of any of the other steps?

    1. I see all of the “clean up steps” as removing blocks to our true potential. I so much love the foundation I received in 12 step meetings. I will post more as I have the time and energy. Thanks for the kind words, Patrick

  4. Hi Patrick. My name is Rodrigo. I am Mary Hatz’s husband. She reached out for me a couple days ago and now I am reaching out for info on your 12 steps and the red road. I would love to participate in the rest of the series.
    I have been alcohol free since May 6th 2019. I went thru some AA meetings and it all makes sense to why I have decided to stop drinking but I have had more issues dealing woth myself and my emotions.
    Mary and I have done a lot of work on ourselves seperately and I have seen her grow where I have as well, but also emotions have come out me that I have had troubles dealing with.
    I would love a link and more information about tonight’s meeting if there is room.

    Rodrigo Huerta

  5. Many years ago I purchased one of your beautiful drums. It has traveled with me through several moves and has now come with me to a retirement community which I expect will be the last move of my life.
    I just looked on your webpage for the very first time and find that we are companions AA. The 12 steps and true friends I’ve found here have been transformative and given me the gift of gratitude. Nothing in my long life of seeking has been as profound or important. Thank you for drum and for your wise words about the path of the 12 steps.

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