Christian Meditation as an 11th Step Practice - From Anxiety to Peace, Fr. John Main OSB

We invite you to reflect on the readings and how they may resonate in your journey of a spiritual awakening in the 12 steps of recovery, and in particular the 11th Step - “Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.” 

Thoughtful men and women everywhere in the world today are beginning to see that spiritual growth, spiritual awareness, is the highest priority for our time.  But the question is: How do we do it? How do we enter on this path?

Meditation is the way of growth, the way of deepening our own commitment to life, our own maturity. It is a most important priority for every one of us to allow our spirit two things:  first, the deepest possible contact with the Life Source, and then, as a result of that contact, to allow our spirit space within which to expand. What does it mean for us when we say that a high priority in every life that would be truly human should be this contact with the life Source?

Every spiritual tradition has known that in profound stillness the human spirit begins to be aware of its own Source.  In the Hindu tradition, for example, the Upanishads speak of the spirit of the One who created the universe dwelling in our heart and the same spirit is described as the One who in silence is loving to all. In our own Christian tradition Jesus tells us of the Spirit who dwells in our heart, and again the spirit is the Spirit of love.

This contact with the Life Source is vital for us, because without it we can hardly begin to suspect the potential that our life has for us.  The potential is that we should grow, that we should mature, that we should come to fullness of life, fullness of love, fullness of wisdom.

That is why the second priority is of such importance, namely that we should allow our spirit the space within which to expand. In the tradition of meditation this space for the expansion of our spirit is to be found in silence.  And meditation is a way of silence and a commitment to silence.  A silence that grows in every part of your life.  A Silence that can only be described as the infinite silence of God, the eternal silence of God


From Anxiety to Peace, Fr. John Main OSB


“How, then, shall we meditate?”  12&12 Step Eleven, p.98  

“The persistent use of meditation and prayer, we found, did open the channel so that where there had been a trickle, there now was a river which led to sure power and safe guidance from God as we were increasingly better able to understand Him.”   12&12 Step Twelve, p.109  

“When the spiritual malady is overcome, we straighten out mentally and physically.”   BB p.64, How It Works

Passages from the Big Book Alcoholics Anonymous and the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions are reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.  The A.A. Preamble, copyright © The A.A. Grapevine, Inc., is reprinted with permission.  Permission to reprint does not in any way imply affiliation with or endorsement by Alcoholics Anonymous or The A.A. Grapevine, Inc.