This particular group of Steps is very timely for me and is perfect for what I am facing. I am facing my error and failure. Within this group of Steps the issue of error and failure is a strong theme. There are a few phrases in this step that I have had to read and reread. I’m not sure I have completely penetrated the full and clear gift that these statements provide but I do feel change taking place.

“Do not attempt to justify your errors by projecting blame upon yourself or by accusing life of not giving you what you need.”

Apparently assigning blame and responsibility is meaningless. So when I feel the weight of an error what do I do with it? In Step 26 it states, “It is pointless to justify error, but error can bring you to value truth… It is not merely for you to forget your errors, for you cannot do that. It is not merely for you to justify your errors, for this will make you dishonest. It is not merely for you to look upon your errors as pure service to you, for they have indeed been painful.” It goes on to say that we must recognize that error is error and to learn from it and allow error to bring us to Knowledge – its only possible value. Looking at error is not for the purpose of self-condemnation, which is where I tend to go, but to really derive value from it. Really “get” that error is costly. “Get” the great need for Knowledge. “Get” that there is no justification in failing to reclaim Knowledge – that Knowledge is really the only answer.

In Step 246 it states that all of the problems of the world can be solved without condemnation, for without condemnation all problems in the world will be solved. This implies that condemnation is a big part of the problem. We condemn ourselves, we condemn others. I have been afraid to look at what I have done or not done. But I have been quick to look at what someone else has done or not done. So if I don’t look within this perpetuates a disassociated state. Is it uncomfortable to look? Yes, indeed, it is uncomfortable. Sometimes I have found it very uncomfortable. Is it uncomfortable to not look? For me it is becoming far more uncomfortable to not look because then it is never resolved, there is still a black mark against me from which I am hiding and is a constant source of pain and discomfort. Is it work? Oh, my goodness. This is the most challenging work and the most rewarding work that I have ever undertaken.

The generosity and compassion that is extended through this Teaching is beginning to work its way into the places that have been stuck, hidden or unavailable to me previously. It opens me and shakes loose those patterns and habits that do not work. It softens me to myself and extends softness to others. It is a great opening. It is like an unfreezing, a thawing that is not without discomfort but begins to allow movement and fluidity and greater freedom.

“Let this be a day to celebrate freedom. Let this be a day to affirm that you are blameless, though you are a student of Knowledge.” There is apparently no justification for failing to reclaim Knowledge. It is the only way through. It is the greatest gift and the greatest freedom. I pray to really “get” this right.