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The Recovery Spiral: A Pagan Path to Healing Paperback – February 1, 2004

18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

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Title: The Recovery Spiral
Author: Collins, Cynthia Jane
Publisher: Kensington Pub Corp
Publication Date: 2004/02/01
Number of Pages: 256
Binding Type: PAPERBACK
Library of Congress: 2003106191


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Citadel (February 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0806525126
  • ISBN-13: 978-0806525129
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,171,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Asphalt Jungle Guide on September 1, 2005
Format: Paperback
Ideally, a 12 Step program stresses *spirituality* in recovery, the Higher Power, however one recognizes it, be it God or one's Higher Self. In reality, being a Pagan in recovery can be a pretty lonely, isolating experience. Paganism in often mis-understood, which can put a damper on the openess, honesty, and 'fearless self-inventory' required for recovery.

This book goes a good way to addressing the specific needs of Pagans seeking recovery from chemical and process addictions, along with rituals, writing exercises, and mediations designed to bolster the teachings of each Step.

That said, the book has some serious flaws. It doesn't spend enough *time* on each Step, or the approaches one can take to them. I have often had to turn to Beattie's "The Co-Dependent's Guide to the 12 Steps" to supplement this book, because of the sheer lack of information. The outline is there, but the emotional connection is often missing. Too much time is spent on case histories and not enough on how to apply the step to one's own situation.

One of the tools used in the book is the Tarot--a very useful tool in itself. However, the results of the readings given in the book make me wonder just where the (card) reader was coming from. The interpretations of many of the cards are pretty far out from what I've learned--and more than a little negative. The spreads are also new and somewhat complicated, requiring a lot of page-flipping. There doesn't seem much point to the complexity of some of the spreads, which seem elaborate for the sake of elboration. (Is it *really* necessary to have a spread that puts cards at the main compass points instead of using the Celtic Cross?
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By W. Martin on October 27, 2005
Format: Paperback
Ms. Collins delivers a break-through book for Pagans suffering from the debilitating dis-ease of addictions. Whatever the addiction from alcohol or drugs to helping others or buying too much, this book works on the intuitive level to address the cause and changes needed to find relief from a life ravaged by addictive behaviors.

For years the Pagan sufferer has had to make do with books written mainly from a Judeo-Christian perspective. While many have found such books helpful and used them to achieve a measure of relief from their addictions, there was something "not quite right" from a Pagan viewpoint. The Recovery Spiral addresses this lack in many Pagan addicts' needs for full recovery from addiction and its harmful side effects.

Ms. Collins based her book on her own recovery since 1974, and her specialized work on abuse and abuse related issues. She takes the Pagan addict on the Path of Recovery through meditation, ritual and tarot readings all based on a reworded 12 Step system of recovery with gentle humor and guidance. Through the stories of the author herself and several others in the book we learn how a Spiral Path of recovery can work in our own lives.

Each of the reworded 12 Steps is thoroughly explained in a Pagan perspective. The rituals are simple enough even for a beginner to the Pagan Ways. The author's voice is clear and concise in her explanations of Step work. The book's three distinct sections are well laid out for anyone wanting to use the book from the newest to recovery to those with many years of 12th Step experience.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to remove old baggage from their lives and replace it with healthy behaviors so they can live with a fuller connection to themselves, their friends, family and the Divine.

W. Lyon Martin Author/Illustrator of "An Ordinary Girl, A Magical Child"
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 2, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
For someone struggling with the profoundly Christian slant of most 12-step programs, I was thrilled to find a book that offered concrete ideas, rituals, etc. for embracing a Pagan philosophy of support. The book is easy to read, offers tremendously good thoughts to ponder and concrete rituals, Tarot spreads relating to each of the twelve steps, and anecdotal illustrations. It's truly a good beginning for anyone seeking to find a twelve-step solution from an earth-based path.
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Format: Paperback
Recognition, recovery and sometimes rehab - these are the 3 R's of people making the supreme effort of recovering from addictions. While the most successful program of recovery, from alcohol anyway, is Alcoholics Anonymous, many non-christians find that the wording and the "slant" of the AA Big Book and AA "conference approved literature" makes only token acknowledgments at best that there may be religions on planet earth other than Christianity. Anyone who has spent time reading the AA Big Book can fail to notice this - for many Pagans in particular (from my perspective, anyway) the wording and slant can keep them from appreciating and learning from the very valuable advice and lessons in the "Big Book" - and sadly, many do not recover because of this barrier.

There IS an alternative - The Recovery Spiral is a must-read for any Pagan in recovery, or considering recovery. The first chapter will feel like a splash of cool fresh mountain water after a long, hot, dusty trek - help that we can accept and that has meaning in our lives. Also a must read for the partners and co-dependants in the lives of Pagans in recovery! Based on the lessons and learnings of the AA Big Book, Cynthia Jane Collins has cast us a recovery circle, put her hand in ours and tells us that we are not alone and that there is hope and an astonishing life beyond addiction.
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