First things first: THE LINK TO BUY
A lot is said about intentions, just last night I was telling a friend about the Buddhist concept of a good deed done with evil intentions is not a good deed, just like a bad deed done with good intentions can be good, in the karmic concept of life. I’ve seen it play out in my life since I have gotten clean and worked the steps- if I help someone, because it is the right thing to do, but maybe I am hoping to hook up with her as a ‘side effect,’ I am tainting the whole action. I am not being altruistic at all, that little bit of selfishness is a powerful enough poison to kill the last shred of kindness in the original act.
When I published Long Sleeved Summers, I told myself I was doing it to hopefully help people that somehow were tied to addiction, either as an addict, or friend or family of an one. I also had these fantastical dreams of being famous, ending up on Oprah, but when one spends his days shooting heroin, motivation is pretty low to breathe, let alone put in the work to succeed. Plus, more importantly, my actions of lying, (I was so far from clean when I published that book), made it impossible for those lofty ideals to shine through. As I result I hated that book, and why I am pulling it off the market.
Shoestring Theories is what I have always wanted my memoir to be, written on God’s schedule, not mine. There is a heavy spiritual component in the book, because as I say in the first sentences of chapter one: “I wasn’t always a liar, a thief and a cheater with a death wish. It’s not like from an early age I dreamed of becoming a heroin addict when I grew up, nor could I ever imagine a simple shoelace would be the genesis of a new life.” There’s a lot of clues as to why I called the book that, but only a few people know why, but I firmly our lives all have shoestring “moments” – if we are paying attention. I was as hard headed and stupid as they come, so God kind of lost patience with me and backhanded me across the face – but not until I put in the tiniest bit of effort to help myself. A friend urged me to do that, he would NOT help me, and there is your technically ‘bad’ deed being beautiful. Brendan got a lot of positive karma for that one.
This time around, I want to help people, and my words are pure. I have some good ideas for long ranged plans with this book, especially centered around the title. I did 12 Steps. I am not a Kool-Aid drinker, I am not in a cult. I do not go to a meeting 7 days a week, and while I will thank God and take any amount of ridicule from someone who does not believe, I am not thumping Bibles or standing on street corners telling you to accept Jesus.
What I am doing is living spiritually, to the best of my abilities. God has a name for me, it’s God. I do not get into religion, never have, never will. My actions are, for the most part examined and selfless. The more I grow, the more being selfless is simply my reaction to a situation. Religions threaten me with hell, reincarnation as a dog in Korea, whatever. If you understand how living in shame, giving away morality for a fix, not having anyone in the world to turn to, we are on the same path, the one leading out of hell. We have been there and survived. We meet and this clicks for you because we are all part of something bigger.
Anyway, I am taking all of life as it comes, doing the work, and constantly grateful. For heartbeats and breaths, for smiles and sunrises, for that spiritual connection that lets me know, that stranger is part of this bigger thing, say hello and offer to listen. If a few bucks helps, do it, sometimes a pack of cigarettes can save a man. I should know.
Anyway, this is relaxation weekend for me! And so that you don’t have to scroll to the top for the link, here you go: BUY SHOESTRING THEORIES
P.S. Kindle version will be available Monday, June 22, 2015.
Buddha says: No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path.
Peace and Love and Love Peace,