With a Jewish Voice: Step 5

With a Jewish Voice: Step 5

“Wherever you go, God goes with you.”  Deuteronomy Rabbah 2:10

Admitted to G-d, to ourselves, And to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

Looking at this step with a Jewish eye, it is easy to see the act of Teshuvah – the process we approach each year at Yom Kippur to repent for our sins. The process of Teshuvah has several components. One part is personal, another is spiritual and the other is with another human being.


It is interesting to note that Teshuvah does not mean to repent – at least not in the way we usually think of it. Teshuvah really asks us to return, return to the person who wouldn’t have sinned in the first place.  So much so, that if we were placed in the same situation, or the same place again, we would act completely differently.


Just like we strive in recovery, some of us need to try again and again to become a different person.  Someone who doesn’t need to use drugs or alcohol or whatever addiction of choice to fill our spiritual hole to become new. But none of us can do it by ourselves. It isn’t enough to think to ourselves that we need to change. We need to take action. We first must make an effort with ourselves; then we have to get honest with G-d. But to get truly honest, we must acknowledge our fault with another person.


The principle behind the step is integrity. At its core, integrity asks us to be consistent in our approach to life. In all situations, we seek to respond with the same honesty, caring and concern for ourselves and others. We seek to treat others as we want to be treated ourselves.


Written by Eric Miller, Posted in Counseling Services

About the Author

Eric Miller

Eric Miller

In recovery since 2008, Eric has a great deal of knowledge about substance abuse. He couples his experience with his observant Jewish upbringing to offer a Jewish lens to the issues of addiction and sobriety.