"Alcoholics Anonymous, Thoughts, Talks and Discussions. Read Out Loud, The Steps & Traditions, All chapters from the Big Book Plus an AA Workshop
Some of you will need to use this alternative 12 Step audio player
I got sober in the 5:30 basement meeting of the Alano Club in Portland, OR. I sat in there every day for 2 years and most every day of my third. I really like A.A.. I really appreciate the 12 Step process. People that know me will ask me, "How can you like the steps and the program and not believe in god?". They do ask. I keep telling people that I'm not a non-believer. I just don't know anything for sure so I am kind of a...I don't know...what's a good label for that?I ask, upon awaking, that "Everything That Is" direct me to what is best and that what is best be directed to me. I don't know exactly what kind of "spiritual" stuff is out there. I don't even know if there is an "out there". It may turn out that the "out there" is "in here" and the whole apparent world is the rendering of collective thought.
I think rather than be classified as a "non" or an "un" I would come closer to being a "not limited too". What that boils down to is I don't know anything. I have some practices. I got them from people who wrote their ideas in books and some who I heard speaking at meetings. I am a Donoist.
I didn't put every chapter of the big Book up here. I left out the personal stories. I left out something else too. But I can't remember what it is.
Ideas are welcome...Use Open Discussions to talk about whatever you'd like. Doesn't have to have anything to do with AA, NA, or recovery for that matter.
The AA Preamble"ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. A.A. is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety."
The Serenity PrayerGod, grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The Courage to change the things I can, and
The wisdom to know the difference.
The Twelve Steps1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol, that our lives had become unmanageable.
2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
The Twelve Traditions of AA1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends on AA unity.
2. For our group purpose there is one ultimate authority - a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
3. The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking.
4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or AA as a whole.
5. Each group has but one primary purpose - to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
6. An AA group ought never endorse, finance, or lend the AA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property, and prestige divery us from our primary purpose.
7. Every AA group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
8. Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
9. AA, as such ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
10. Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the AA name ought never be drawn into controversy.
11. Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, and films.
12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.
The Promises"If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through. We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness. We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace. No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others. That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows. Self-seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change. Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us. We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.
"Are these extravagant promises? We think not. They are being fulfilled among us, sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly. They will always materialize if we work for them."
From Chapter Six of "The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous."