AA is a selfish program

Topics related to AA Meetings - and alcohol addiction recovery
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AA is a selfish program

Postby Jools » Wed Mar 18, 2009 9:00 am

It really bothers me to hear someone say that at a meeting! I feel like it could mislead a newcomer.

I understand that our sobriety must be the number one priority in our lives, otherwise, how can we be free from the obsession to drink, form a relationship with God, be free from resentments, be free from SELFishness, SELF seeking motives, SELF-centeredness, and be of maximum service to God and our fellow?

I dunno, perhaps, as usual, I'm making a mountain out of a molehill.

Whatcha think?


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Postby Dallas » Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:08 pm

Hey Julie! Thanks for the topic!

I'm with you. When I hear someone say in a meeting that "AA is a selfish program"... it shows me how ignorant they are about AA! :lol:

AA is a self-less program of recovery. Our guiding principle (for those that are living the principles)..... is giving rather than getting. If more AA's read the Big Book, took the Steps, and read the black on the white pages in the book... they would see how foolish their sharing is on AA being a selfish program! :lol: :lol: However... they're probably spending so much of their time sitting in chairs at meetings... sharing their profound wisdom... that they have no time to read the book! :lol:

That's how I see it.


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Postby sunlight » Wed Mar 18, 2009 8:21 pm

Let's see...

The big book tells me this is:

a spiritual program
a program of action
a program of recovery
a simple program
a useful program
a practical program

Nope, nothing about a selfish program. :?

I heard this all the time when I was newly sober & it never did sit right with me. It didn't seem to mesh with what the book was saying, & I thought it was just some goofy thing someone made up because it sounded good. Like it should be right. Like a Zen koan.

Then, after going so gung ho in the program - 3 meetings a day, endless phone calls, never seeing family or friends, & ready to sponsor stray dogs, I was on the verge of burnout & got what I thought they were trying to say - to remember to take care of myself & my responsibilities in life.

Still, to me, it's misleading. Hope I never see it as a poster on the wall cuz it's coming down! :x :lol:

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Postby Tim » Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:10 pm

Part of this idea of AA as a selfish program may come from the words on the back of anniversary coins handed out to those who have arrived at a year-mark in abstinence from alcohol.

The saying is from Shakespeare's play, Hamlet, and reads:
This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.

It was said by Polonius, an oily, looking-out-for-number-one character, whose own self-interest was paramount in all his words and actions. There is an ounce of wisdom in the words, but they can be easily twisted to promote selfishness.

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Postby Dallas » Thu Mar 19, 2009 5:06 pm

Page 79, Big Book wrote:Although these reparations take innumerable forms,
there are some general principles which we find guiding.
Reminding ourselves that we have decided to go to any
lengths to find a spiritual experience, we ask that we be
given strength and direction to do the right thing, no matter
what the personal consequences may be. We may
lose our position or reputation or face jail, but we are
willing. We have to be. We must not shrink at anything.

Usually, however, other people are involved. Therefore,
we are not to be the hasty and foolish martyr who
would needlessly sacrifice others to save himself
the alcoholic pit.

Page 128, Big Book wrote:Giving, rather than getting, will become the guiding

Page 77, Big Book wrote:At the moment we are trying
to put our lives in order. But this is not an end in itself.
Our real purpose is to fit ourselves to be of maximum
service to God and the people about us

That works for me! :lol:

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Postby ccs » Fri Mar 20, 2009 1:13 am

thanks D. I needed that

works for me tooo :D :D

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Postby ROBERT » Fri Mar 20, 2009 10:44 am

wow-i really luv this site---this is chess not checkers-we are saving lives--tradition 5 is clear "ONE PRIMARY PURPOSE" the group is to carry the message of recovery to the still suffering alcoholic,but i can report that i witness alot of EGO WISDOM which in my humble opinion cares nothing for the still suffering. There are times when i will refer to this tradition/principle and bring the message to the tables when the course of the meeting is going south.The preamble tells me,that is my primary purpose--so yea,the black & white. Thanks Dallas

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Postby Dallas » Fri Mar 20, 2009 7:35 pm

The feelings are mutual... This Site really luvs you, too!
And, so do I!!!
Imagine that! :lol:

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Postby ROBERT » Wed Sep 02, 2009 11:57 pm

we work out our SOLUTION on a spiritual and ALTRUISTIC plane--from the book, not opinion--not clear-look up ALTRUISM...case closed. :o

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Postby Dallas » Thu Sep 03, 2009 3:48 am

Was there a case open? :lol:

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