Thursday, February 5, 2009




OK...please read the next three paragraphs slowly and with care:

"Our intense need to 'understand' will always be a powerful stumbling block to our attempts to reach God in simple love, and must always be overcome. For if you do not overcome this need to understand, it will undermine your quest."

"It will replace the darkness which you have pierced to reach God, with clear images of something which, however good, however beautiful, however Godlike, is not God."

"And so I urge you, go after experience rather than knowledge. On account of pride, knowledge may often deceive you, but this gentle, loving affection will not deceive you. Knowledge tends to breed conceit, but love builds. Knowledge is full of labor, but love, full of rest."
---The Cloud of Unknowing, Anonymous

Ya know, a long time ago I got so tired of people asking me "Why?" Why this? Why that? Why do you? Why did you? Why did you NOT? TIRED! I mean I became READY-TO-BLOW-UP-tired of the word "WHY?" when directed at me.

And so I made myself a "life-rule". Of course, being alcoholic, this rule did not apply to ME! Every friend, every girlfriend, every wife, every fellow worker, even my children (Oh God...my poor children) knew to not ask me the dreaded question...why? Don't ask me WHY? NMW! (No Matter What!)

And ya know what? People seemed to respect that--maybe they were afraid? Afraid of "violent" Steve? -grin! (Maybe they just didn't want to have ANYTHING to do with me--now THAT I can believe...)

However--punch line coming--I never stopped asking MYSELF the question..."Why?"

Got to still work on that. "WHY" stunts my growth (I'm 75, not finished growing FGS!). WHY builds a wall between me and YOU. WHY builds a wall between me and God. WHY drives me NUTS! Why, Why, Why???

Why am I writing this? Because just MAYBE it will help someone else who has the same F'ing problem--and like me, will stop and look at their own stupid, single, three-letter word...W.H.Y.

Peace, and 'restful' LOVE,
Steve E.

Friday: SIXTH TRADITION (Did I hear someone say, "Thank God"???)


Atiyanna said...

But...how do we learn if we don't ask "why"?

steveroni said...

Good question! I hope you were not asking it of moi?

Favorite Witch, maybe you did not read with care (above). I do not need KNOWLEDGE, only restful LOVE. And to just BE WITH the one I love--God! How simple it all is!

Maybe I should have been one of those contempative-monk-types. L.O.L.

Prayer Girl said...

Reminds me of my poem, "Why At All?"

Whether I ask or don't ask, God is the source of all knowledge and reveals truth to me as He sees fit and when He sees fit to my benefit.


vicariousrising said...

I think the innocent curiosity that makes children ask "why" is all the more proof that we a creatures created to be inquisitive and knowledge seeking.

If I never asked why, I'd probably be still drunk or be dead and would have no clue of who I am.

RipGurl said...


You sent me on a goose chase to find redeeming qualities for the word "why". The only find that even slightly gave credence to the three letter word is this video:



Linda S. Socha said...

I absolutely love the Cloud quote...experience instead of knowledge . Well said.

Zanejabbers said...

THAT WAS GREAT! Why? It was from your heart and man did you come through on that one. Yep, I needed that. Glad you're not a MONK. Thanks.

Jess Mistress of Mischief said...

I should have learned this lesson long ago when, in asking "why" in answer to each answer that my dad gave, my Dad would always wind up frustratedly saying, "cats for to make little girls like you ask questions."

I know now that my sponsor doesn't tolerate why, he patiently gives me reading assignments and writing assignments and tells me he loves me and hangs up.

My problem has never been in the question, it has been in the absolute assurance that I know the answer better than you, and my whys were always of the fighting variety, the "I have my mind made up and I'm gonna debate it with you variety." If I simply asked why with love and accepted the love that you answered with, I'd be a lot farther along. But, God made me and God will change me in His time now that I ask Him...

Oh, yeah, and I don't think it's a coincidence ... that devotional I read in Two Listeners.org/God Calling today of all days... You're working with Him, and I appreciate that more than I could ever show you!!!

The answer(for me now)to all Whys, (which is defined in ole Merriam Webster as: for what purpose, cause or reason) is "God."

Banana Girl said...

W: When
H: He
Y: Yawns

I just got this image of God yawning and waiting. The only time I ask why is in relation to my own actions---Why do I feel this way? Why am I upset? Why did I....? a sort of fill in the blank moment. But the most important one for me to stay sober is: Why is this important to me if it is not important to God? Even the sparrows do not worry....Love this post. Thanks Whyerroni! J.

Syd said...

I have asked why in my work because that's what scientists do. However, in my interactions with people--why seems like a nosy question. It's none of my business. And to ask why of myself was done in Step Four. Or maybe it was more like I did what I did because I was...selfish, self-centered, dishonest, etc.

J-Online said...

I'm sorry but I had to laugh...not at you of course. Just thinking of how many times in one day my Son or his Friend will ask me WHY! I get so sick and tired of it. Sometimes it's because I don't know the answer, then I feel stupid! Maybe that's why I don't like WHY.

Anonymous said...

I hear 'why' so often in my day that I tend to tune it out. Good post, Steve-O.

idenmw said...

I could actually hear you saying those things...with all your emphasis....What a gift to know you. Fortunately God doesn't want to smack me when I ask why for the millionth time...he reaches down and pats my heart and says...trust Dad! Makes me smile thinking of what a gorgeous Dad I have. You've got HIS eyes.

Hope said...

Racing after knowledge has been my downfall many, many times. I have hid behind it well.
Experience of God (gentle, loving affection) has never let me down.
I have this Cloud of Unknowing book on my shelf, maybe it will be added to my Lenten reading.

Thanks, as always, for such a great post.

Cat said...

love builds... i rather like that

clean and crazy said...

surrender to the process steveroni, this too shall pass.

indistinct said...

I read this yesterday and it had shown me a bit of myself. I just want to say:

Thanks. It was much appreciated.

twodogsblogging said...

When I got here, I wanted to know "Why" to everything that was suggested. (Perhaps that why I kept getting loaded.) Finally, slightly exasperated, my sponsor suggested I start asking "How" instead.

The dumber we are, the easier this program is, I think. I plan to remain dumb forever, one day at a time.