Behold, are ye stripped of pride? I say unto you, if ye are not ye are not prepared to meet God.
~ Alma 5:28 ~
We are required to strip ourselves from pride. If we do not, we are not able to surrender our life and will over to a higher power. This begins by making a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves (Step Four). Pride prevents us from a real and honest look into who we presently are.
Recovery begins when we get to the core understanding of who we are as individuals. What our weaknesses are, what our strengths are. Discovery of character defects, beliefs, values, and reasons we think the way we think, and feel the way we feel. Understanding our own personal experiences in the process. How we define our sense of reality. The impact, good or bad, we have had on other people. This process requires humility.
Our personal inventory is based on two components of truth:
Principle Truth: Fearless
In Plato’s apology, we read something the philosopher quotes from Socrates when present at the trial. Socrates was ultimately condemned to death. This quote shows the inexplicable truth: An unexamined life is not worth living. To examine one’s life may require one to not fear what they see. Fear is typically something concerning the unknown. What is the greatest unknown to the person in recovery? Their own personal identity. When we are not fearful to discover who we truly are, we are liberated to accepting and beginning to work a recovery where there is meaning and purpose.
Socrates’ claim that the unexamined life is not worth living makes a satisfying climax for the deeply principled arguments that Socrates presents on behalf of the philosophical life. The claim is that only in striving to come to know ourselves and to understand ourselves do our lives have any meaning or value. Again, goodness is associated with wisdom, making the life of the philosopher–the lover of wisdom–the most desirable life of all. If we refuse to question ourselves and the world, we will act without reason, unable to distinguish between good actions and bad actions. Without philosophy, Socrates might argue, humans are no better off than animals. The good life is one in which we make both ourselves and those around us happier and better off, and the only way to pursue that life is to pursue wisdom and self-knowledge. If Socrates were to give up philosophizing, he would be abandoning the examined life, and without wisdom or self-knowledge he would be better off dead.
Principle truth: Moral
When we overcome our fear of our own unknown identity, we begin to look at our own temperament and character. We question and evaluate our personal beliefs and values. We examine how our behavior has led us to where we presently are. We restore our moral agency – or, our temperament and character to make appropriate decisions toward a meaning and purposeful life.
Through this, we come to see who we truly are, with the help of our own Higher Power. We come to accept our true self (soul). We strive toward restoring our sense of identity. Discriminating from our ego (false self) and our soul (true self).
By coming to terms with who we are, stripping ourselves from pride, we are further willing to submit and surrender our own lives and will over to our higher power. We come to understand our own meaning and purpose.
Thoughtful meditation for today
Help me strip myself of pride and ego in order to continue to take a fearless and moral inventory in order to discover and restore who I am.