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                                     How I "Heal" 
     by Matrika of PAN - the Psychic Awareness Network

     You asked what forms of healing people do and included things that might
     not be considered healing in the usual sense.  Well, one of my special
     interests is Pagans in Recovery.  This is a group of Pagans who are in
     12-step recovery programs - Alcoholics Anonymous and other self-help groups
     that are based on A.A. such as Gamblers Anonymous, Al-Anon, Narcotics
     Anonymous, Overeater's Anonymous, Adult Children of Alcoholics, Emotions
     Anonymous etc. etc. etc.   If you can think of an obstacle in your life or
     somebody else's, chances are that someone somewhere has started a 12-step
     program to deal with it.

     The problem is that many Pagans, Feminist Priestesses, Shamans, Druids, and
     any other type of Magickal folk you can think of, often don't feel
     comfortable in AA and these related groups.  WHY?  THe meetings CLOSE with
     the Lord's prayer or the "our father" and have many Christian overtones
     taken from the general culture, although they are technically supposed to
     be non-sectarian in their spiritual approach.  Many Pagans in these groups
     find that they have trouble applying the steps of recovery in the context
     of what they believe to find recovery for their specific problems.  This is
     particularly difficult in cases of Alcoholism and Drug addiction - and
     these problems DO exist to a great degree in the Pagan/Magickal communities
     - in which A.A. and Narcotics Anonymous are often the most successful
     treatment approaches available to the average person and that feeling
     excluded from them can mean death, insanity or jail to the person who does
     not find the help they need.

     While living in New England I wrote a series of articles on how to apply
     the steps of recovery in a Pagan/Magickal context in HARVEST - a popular
     newsletter for the Craft in that region, that is now becoming nationwide.
     THe last of these was printed in Yule of 1989, just before I left to move
     here.  At the same time I discovered PAGANS IN RECOVERY had been formed on
     a national basis in Ohio and had a list of a large number of people, as
     well as nationwide contacts for networking.  (Pagans in Recovery is
     published for $8.00 a year  - address Pagans in Recovery Newsletter c/o
     Bekki  6500 S.R. 356 ,   New Marshfield OHIO 45766)

     An interesting note is that we both started doing this work separately and
     originally I also had a network called PANTHEISTS IN RECOVERY.  Neither of
     us had known of the others existence at the time of starting the work and
     taking these names.  Pantheists in Recovery has since merged with the
     national network, as I saw no need to duplicate their excellent efforts.
     Another interesting note is that, in my case, doing this was inspired by
     J.A.C.S. - an organization for Jewish Alcoholics, Chemically dependent
     people and their Significant others.  It had been founded for the same
     purpose by some Jewish folks in A.A. in New York City and has now spread
     across the country, to Canada, and to Israel with several thousand names on
     their mailing lists.  These people also felt the need for support to
     integrate their recovery program with their religion because they were

     A very special part of this extended "healing" work for me is that I have
     the support of my partner Koren, the sysop of PAN, who is my partner both
     in the Craft and in our lives together.  Although he is not himself in any
     of these recovery programs, he has been very helpful and supportive of my
     work in reaching out to other Pagans who are also in these groups.


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