The work of Dan Millman is very powerful for assisting a person in transforming his or her life. In my work as a psychotherapist at the Holistic Addiction Treatment Program I introduce all of the clients to “The Way of the Peaceful Warrior” both as a book and as the movie. The movie and book are about a person who learns about never giving up and in the process begins a process of transforming his life. The process is about becoming present to that which he was not present to, to certain distinctions that once considered began to alter his life forever.

Below are listed some of the important distinctions that are presented in the movie. After the movie is shown a discussion group is held with the group members to process these distinctions and how they may assist in a client in his or her program of recovery from drugs and alcohol.

1. Knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge is knowing something and Wisdom is doing it. Knowing what recovery is about is one thing and having wisdom is to practice it everyday life.

2. Highest purpose is for us to be of service to others. Assisting other addicts is part of the process of recovery.

3. “Take out the trash”. A person’s Trash is the thoughts in your mind that keeps you out of the moment. The work of the Warrior is to practice letting go of the Trash in ones mind in order to keep you fully in the moment and as a result engaged in the recovery process.

4. We are afraid of what is inside. The only place to find what you need is inside you. The experience of fear/being scared is about being empty. The work of the Warrior is to go inside and face ones fear directly, to not run from it.

5. Are you paying attention (to your addiction)? Are you present to what is going on, to what you are experiencing now.

6. What are you holding onto (that keeps you stuck in your addiction)? Who are you without your addiction? Practice of letting go of what you are holding onto that keeps you stuck. Give up your attachments to people, place and things that hinder your recovery and keep you enslaved to drugs and alcohol.

7. “Not knowing” is the first principle of a Warrior. Getting this allows one to be and remain teachable, open to learning. Practice “not knowing” when you attend a meeting or work with your sponsor, doing such allows you to learn about and apply the principles of recovery.

8. There are no ordinary moments. There is always something going on. Pay attention to the present or now. Getting that there are no ordinary moments and that there is always something going on keeps us completely grounded in the present, in the Now. When we get this we experience that all moments are extraordinary.

9. Give up the Good-Bad, Right-Wrong way of thinking about yourself and others. Making wrong and passing judgment will only hinder your recovery. The work is about acceptance, acceptance of self and others.

10. Happiness is about your journey and not the destination. Staying focused on the journey allows you to stay in recovery, staying focused on the destination will only create the space for you to get out of recovery.

The work of a Warrior is to live the distinction presented, to bring them forth in ones life, to fully practice Wisdom. Implementation of the distinctions will result in one being fully accountable and responsible for his or her life. The work of a Warrior is about being fully present in the now, moment and life, that that is who we truly are. Living the distinctions will take ones recovery to a new dimension.

What time is it? Now.

Where are you? Here.

Who are you? This moment,

Harry Henshaw, Ed.D., LMHC
Enhanced Healing

Author's Bio: 

Dr Harry Henshaw is in private practice in North Miami Beach, Florida. Enhanced Healing