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John MacDougall

John MacDougall is the Spiritual Care Coordinator at The Retreat.
His book, “Being Sober and Becoming Happy” is available from Amazon.com

Recent Posts

Gratitude and Resentment

[fa icon="calendar'] Dec 5, 2019 8:00:00 AM / by John MacDougall posted in addiction, recovery road

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            In the early 1970’s I drove a taxi in New York City. The fare meters were mechanical, not electronic. They were driven by two moving cables. One cable measured time, and the other measured distance. Whichever cable moved faster drove the fare. If the cab was stuck in traffic, the fare still went up, driven by the “waiting time”. If the cab was moving briskly, the meter went up, pushed along by the distance driven. That image comes to mind when I think of gratitude and resentment.

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“A Real Man in Beverly Hills”

[fa icon="calendar'] Nov 7, 2019 6:00:00 AM / by John MacDougall posted in meeting, friend, look, suits, loyalty, priscilla, hands, beverly hills, street, suit

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It’s Friday, November 1st, and I took the day off. I flew with my wife, Priscilla to Los Angeles. This fall I joined “The Magic Castle” in Hollywood. It is a private club in a castle, located in the Hollywood Hills. I sponsor a 94 year old psychologist who lives in California, and he both introduced me to the Magic Castle, and sponsored me for membership.

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We’re As Sober As Our Driving

[fa icon="calendar'] Aug 6, 2019 12:37:42 PM / by John MacDougall posted in Recovery, things, myself, someone, situation, don, willingness, talk, feelings

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“I don’t mean driving under the influence of alcohol, I mean driving under the influence of anger, resentment, and ego. “You’re in MY lane!” “You’re in MY way!” “You cut ME off!”"

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Celebrating My Freedom on Independence Day

[fa icon="calendar'] Jul 3, 2019 2:17:50 PM / by John MacDougall posted in Recovery, things, myself, someone, situation, don, willingness, talk, feelings

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“What has God done for me, that I could never do for myself? On Independence Day, 2019, I get to celebrate 30 years of continuous sobriety in the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous."

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Becoming Self-Supporting

[fa icon="calendar'] Jun 5, 2019 11:21:11 AM / by John MacDougall posted in Recovery, things, myself, someone, situation, don, willingness, talk, feelings

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“Every A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.”

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The Grouch and The Brainstorm

[fa icon="calendar'] May 1, 2019 7:32:17 AM / by John MacDougall posted in anger, Recovery, boundaries, meeting, retreat, alcoholics, something, steps, need

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Most weekdays I work at The Retreat as the Spiritual Care Coordinator. Most of the time I am meeting with men and women who have already identified themselves as alcoholics and addicts who need recovery and want recovery, using the Twelve Steps and the Big Book of alcoholics anonymous. They understood that what The Retreat has is a thirty day immersion into the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. What The Retreat does not have is radio, television, computers, cell phones, and much in the way of entertainment. We take people who need recovery, put them with people who have recovery, and let everyone benefit from shared experience.

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“That’s How You Get To Be An Old Pilot!”

[fa icon="calendar'] Apr 2, 2019 6:00:00 AM / by John MacDougall posted in god, thing, condition, maintenance, pilot, steps, gate, step, scaffolding, agent

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If tempted, we recoil from it as from a hot flame

[fa icon="calendar'] Feb 27, 2019 6:00:00 AM / by John MacDougall posted in god, drink, cookies, craving, mind, chocolate, desire, temptation, thought

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Reflections on the coldest night of the year

[fa icon="calendar'] Jan 30, 2019 8:03:10 AM / by John MacDougall posted in AA, retreat, forecast, night, below, anyone, tonight, everyone, alcoholics

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It’s Tuesday afternoon at The Retreat, and it’s cold. Right now it is 6 degrees below zero. The forecast for tonight is 26 below. Tomorrow’s forecast is 15 below in the daytime and 29 below at night. The all-time low was 32 below, set on the evening of February 3, 1996.

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Friends of Bill W. Meet In The Stuyvesant Room at 4:00 P.M.

[fa icon="calendar'] Jan 3, 2019 5:54:32 PM / by John MacDougall posted in Alcoholics Anonymous, AA, AA meetings

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I just returned from a Christmas cruise with a family group of nine people on Holland America’s new ship, the Niew Statendam. Our group of nine included my wife and myself, our two daughters, two sons-in-law, and three grandchildren. We all get along well.

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