Over the past two weeks, two individuals approached me and asked for help locating appropriate treatment facilities, for their respective friends who were in the throes of substance abuse addiction.
During our discussions, it crossed my mind several times, that there are striking similarities between the Teshuva process, as outlined by the Rambam and many of our leading siffrei mussar over the years, and the 12-Step programs employed by Alcoholics Anonymous and other groups formed to help wean people off their addictions.
In fact, a simple reading of the 12-Steps leads the reader to the inescapable conclusion that the creators of the program were inspired by the notion of teshuva and its various components. One thing that is very different about the 12-Step program though, is that its effectiveness is very easily measurable (did the person refrain from drinking?) while the results of the teshuva process are often much more difficult to quantify.
As we all prepare to face the Ribbono Shel Olam during the upcoming Yomim Noraim, and engage in the process of reflection and teshuva, allow me to invite you to a talk I gave at Cong. Beth Abraham in Teaneck, N.J. breaking down the components of the teshuva process and what we can learn from "12-steppers" in terms of making meaningful and measurable improvement in our lives.
You may listen to the recorded Shiur by clicking here or on your phone by dialing 209.647.1699 and entering the code 827269# or by inserting the following link in your browser: http://www.RabbiHorowitz.com/pyes/LinkedArticles/12StepstoTeshuva9-24-2011MP3.mp3
Due to technical difficulties -- please fast forward over the first three blank minutes of the recording to listen to the beginning of the Shiur.
וחתימה טובה כתיבה
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