I was listening again recently to an old Chuck C. talk. I think it was from the Palo Mesa retreat, that was recorded and turned into the book 'A New Pair of Glasses.'
Chuck was commenting on: (my paraphrase) "AA is not 'telling' others what to do -- it's sharing what we did. We don't tell -- we simply share what we did. When someone in AA is telling others what to do -- they're not doing AA."
That comes to my mind often now, when I hear one of the 'AA Police' sharing.
They spend an enormous amount of time 'telling' us when and what we're doing wrong -- instead of sharing with us -- what they did.
A specific place in the Big Book comes to mind, that goes along w/ this. It is in the Chapter 3, More about alcoholism -- where they are discussing Jim, the salesman. I think it's on page 35... it's simply 'telling Jim, what we knew about alcoholism." There is a way to 'tell' what we know about something -- without telling someone what they should do.
As an AA, I can't tell another AA what to do. So, when speaking in a meeting -- I try to constantly 'check myself' to see if: Am I telling? Or, am I sharing what I did? And, even when I'm 'sharing what I did' -- am I using words that will appear to, or possibly give the impression of -- me 'telling someone' what they should do.
The exception that I see in this is in Sponsorship. I WANT my sponsor to tell me what to do and how to do it. That may not work for other AA's -- it's simply what I NEED and WANT.
I had previously worked w/ sponsors that would not tell me what to do -- because that's the way they sponsored. And, even though that may work well for some AA's -- it produced more problems for me.
My head was probably messed up more than other peoples heads. My head kept me drinking and kept me getting into trouble -- so, I had to make a decision to use someone else's head and their thoughts, and their judgements -- until, I had the ability to use my head. And, now that I have the ability to use my head -- I still use my sponsor to help me keep a check on what I'm thinking and what I'm doing.