The Power of Acceptance: Embracing Change for a Brighter Future
The Poison Dart parable illustrates the universal spiritual principle of First Things First:Down in the Amazon Rainforest, there was a small group of Indigenous men, sitting in a circle around the fire. They were laughing and having a good time bragging about their hunting and stealth skills. They were all really good friends and family members of the same clan.One of the men stood up from the fire, and suddenly from out of the jungle a feathered blow dart came streaming in and plucked itself right into the man’s backside! The man jumped high and let out a scream. All the other men jumped up too – they were very concerned and knew they must get the dart out right away before all the poison entered their friend.The stricken man, however, was very angry and he was yelling, he said (in their own language of course), “What colour are the feathers in that dart? Who was the man that blew it into me? Did anyone see him? How long was the blow stick he used? What face painting did he have on? Was he very tall? What was his name?” and so on, he jumped around yelling. He was peering into the jungle, evading his friends who were trying to pull out the dart before it was too late.With a whole series of questions still on his lips, the man gave one last shiver, scowled, fell down and died.
Many people who come to face their addictions are like the dead man in this story. They feel angry too, and want to know how they came to have the disease. Who gave it to them? When? Who did what wrong and who is to blame? Nature? Nurture? They ask, ask, ask, jumping around and yelling while those that can help are unable to.If the man in the story had listened to his friends, and let them help remove the dart, his chances of survival would have been greatly improved. What about answers to his questions? They may have some sort of interesting story to tell, what bird the feathers came from, how the feathers were obtained, who carved the blow gun, and who made the knife. What about the frog where the poison came from? What about the chemical formula of the poison? Lots of great stories here in a never ending array of possibilities.None of it matters if you are dead. In treatment we encourage people to save their burning questions about the cause or causes of their addiction, for later, way later. First Things First – a basic AA slogan to pull out the poison dart before anything else.
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