I recently attended a zoom meeting and received a truly remarkable lesson in compassion and humility.

The meeting was attended by 17 persons and one of the attendees was drinking cans of booze throughout and  continually interrupting the procedure.
The host had the power to remove him from the room but did not do that.  


I would almost certainly have done had I been the host.

And, by the looks on the faces of several participants it was clear that I wasn't the only one getting agitated.

At one point I considered leaving the room and going elsewhere, but something induced me to stay. Was that my HP giving me the heads up on something worth staying for? I shall never know.

And the host, in her gentle and loving attitude simply continued to use the mute button whenever necessary to silence the noisy drunk.

Three or four people shared and cut short their own shares because of comments by the drunk who continually overrode the mute facility..


Then a female member shared something that had an immediate effect on the drunk.

After she had finished sharing, the drunk asked the host to allow him to share,  and she un-muted him once more gently asking him to respect others in the meeting.

Then we all heard him share about how moved he was by the love and compassion towards him at the meeting in spite of him knowingly being a pain in the butt.

From that point on the meeting took on the true purpose of the line in the Preamble that describes our PRIMARY PURPOSE.

I felt shame in myself for being on the verge of leaving the meeting room because of the interruptions.

After 33 years in recovery and many thousands of meetings I've attended, I momentarily lost sight of the second part of my own Primary Purpose, that is to help others to achieve sobriety.

Instead, I was only thinking of the principle outlines in our Third Tradition and abandoning the compassionate facet of my own personality. I was being so judgemental to the point of arrogance.   

It took the compassion and courage of someone far younger and with a whole lot more humility than I possess, to make me realise that I have much to learn.

I believe that recovery is a journey and this recent episode along the way has convinced me that I still have far to go.

This is my share for Sunday morning 18th October 2020