Help. Hope. Healing.


By Tim B


We’ve had a number of discussions on the Support Forums about sobriety and sobriety dates, especially to the point that there is more to sobriety, particularly in the world of SA, than merely abstaining from acting out.

This is from The gospel in words: ‘Sober’ from Mormon Times by Joseph A. Cannon:

Generally when we think of the word “sober,” we simply think not drunk. It turns out that is an important definition of sober, but the word has a much deeper meaning as it is used in the scriptures. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, soberness is characterized by the absence of excess or indulgence.

A sober person is grave, serious, solemn, having or implying a serious mind or purpose. A sober person is also quiet or sedate in demeanor, dignified or discreet in deportment and of a serious character. A sober person shows no trace of haste or impatience and is free from harshness and violence and is of a moderate disposition, not readily excited or carried away. A sober person is one who has calm and dispassionate judgment and is not desirous of great things or high estate but is free from extravagance or excess. Such a person is guided by sound reason and is sane and rational. Interestingly, sober is also connected to fasting.

The rest of the article is interesting in discussing the word “sober” from a scriptural perspective. This is part of a series where Joseph A Cannon has done some deep study of the meanings of words found in scripture that we might think we understand better than we actually do.

With this article as a starting place, what is the best definition of “sobriety” you can come up with for use in your program of recovery?

1 person likes this post.

2 Responses to “Sober”

  1. julie said:

    Sobriety for me is being free from compulsive, self-defeating behaviors that are slowly killing me, and keeping me from the most important relationship with my HP.

  2. Rex Goode said:

    For me, sobriety is being free from acting out AND acting in behaviors. If I’m not acting out, but am still harsh, judgmental, critical, fanatical, overly controlled, fearful, rigid, isolated, hard on myself, or ignorning my needs, I’m not sober.

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