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What is the AA Program?

The AA Program is one whole package deal -- that comes in FOUR parts. If you miss out on one of the parts -- you are missing out on the AA Program.

Four Parts Which Make Up the -- AA Program

The Book, Alcoholics Anonymous.
The 12 Steps of AA
The Fellowship of AA. And,
Service to AA and to Others.

"The 12 Steps is the Official recovery plan of Alcoholics Anonymous. This is mentioned in the Dr.'s Opinion, in the first section of the book, Alcoholics Anonymous, which has also become known as the Big Book, by AA Members.

"WE OF Alcoholics Anonymous believe that the reader will be interested in the medical estimate of the plan of recovery described in this book."

In the forward to the first edition of the Big Book, the Founder and Pioneers of AA agreed to write in the book:

"WE, OF Alcoholics Anonymous, are more than one hundred men and women who have recovered from a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. To show other alcoholics precisely how we have recovered is the main purpose of this book."

Recovery takes place as a result of an alcoholic following the directions in the book Alcoholics Anonymous -- which will take the alcoholic through the AA 12 Steps of Recovery -- and enable them to discover a Power Greater than Their Self -- that can and will do for them -- what they have been powerless and unable to do for themselves -- and to assist them to help other alcoholics to recover (which is a requirement for recovery).

What is the 12 Steps in the book Program?

"WE OF Alcoholics Anonymous believe that the reader will be interested in the medical estimate of the -- plan of recovery -- described in this book."
~ pg xvii, Dr.'s Opinion, Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd Ed.

The Program -- The 12 Steps -- is a Planned Sequence -- of Time-Sensitive -- Serial Actions -- To Produce A Final Result. The 12 Steps (Program) is a Recipe for Recovery. A recipe -- is to -- repeat a result!.

Illustration: If I were to give you a recipe to bake a cake, (a planned sequence of time-sensitive, serial actions) and your cake fails -- (the Final Result) -- you don't blame the recipe -- you look for the errors that the cook made (you) in following the instructions for the recipe.

  • a. Did you follow the WRITTEN instructions precisely?

  • b. Did you MEASURE the ingredients accurately?

  • c. Did you use the RIGHT ingredients? Or, did you make SUBSTITUTIONS?

  • c. Did you ADD the ingredients in the proper SEQUENCE?

  • d. Did you PRE-HEAT the oven to the SPECIFIC temperature that was called for?

  • e. Did you leave the cake in the oven for the SPECIFIC TIME that was instructed? Or, did you just guess on the timing? Or, did you decide to leave it in the oven for THE LENGTH OF TIME THAT YOU THOUGHT WAS BEST?

  • f. Did you consider the RECIPE as simply SUGGESTIONS? And, come up with your own interpretation of suggestions?

  • g. Did you take the cake out of the oven after it burned? Or, did you take it out of the oven, too soon?

The great thing about baking a cake is: It's not fatal if you fail. You can simply just try it again.

The unfortunate thing about the 12 Steps is: If you are an alcoholic -- and you fail in your recovery, it can be FATAL.

The most unfortunate thing about failing in your recovery is: If and when you "try it again" -- YOU WILL BE TEMPTED TO TRY TO DO IT JUST LIKE YOU DID THE LAST TIME -- THAT FAILED!

Based upon experience, and from observing hundreds of alcoholics that failed to recover -- the reason that they didn't recover was: They were unwilling to let go absolutely of all their PREVIOUS IDEAS ABOUT A.A. and about How A.A. Works!

Each time they returned to A.A. to "try it again" they tried the same thing that they tried that didn't work and -- they were unwilling to admit that:

1. What they did the first time didn't work. And, 2. What they knew about A.A. and Recovery was: Wrong. 3. Unwilling to change their mind -- they continued doing the WRONG THING that was not going to work.

Those that I observed, that finally did recover -- after they returned to A.A., was: They ABSOLUTELY LET GO OF ALL OF THEIR OLD IDEAS -- about A.A.

So, in a nutshell: 1. We have got to read the book and DO (follow the instructions precisely, to the best of our efforts) what's in the book.

2. We MUST take the 12 Steps -- BEFORE we can begin to Practice the 12 Steps. There is a HUGE difference in taking the Steps and Practicing the Steps.

3. We MUST have something to do with participating with the Fellowship of AA.

It's unfortunate, there are some bad actors in the Fellowship. We don't stop shopping for food because their are bad actors in the grocery store. And, we don't stop driving because there are some goofy drivers. We don't stop working at our jobs because there are bad workers. We suit up, show up, and do OUR own responsibility.

And, YES -- each of us that stays sober BECAUSE of the AA Program, has a responsibility to find a way to be of service to A!

4. We MUST be of service! That's our PRIMARY JOB! To be of service to GOD, and to those about us! Yes, we must be of service to other alcoholics. And, we must find a way of living whereby we can be of service to ALL others.

You may disagree with this. That's fine.

I disagreed with it to and I fought with everything I could with all that I could to prove I could be different and only take the bits and pieces of the Program -- and make it work! :-)

However, it was only after I bought in to the whole package that I began to experience what it was like LIVING DAILY as if I had been Rocketed into the 4th Dimension! Once I experienced this -- I couldn't be satisfied in living without it!

Oh sure. You. Or someone else MAY be okay with just part of the package. Part of the package may satisfy you. And, that choice is entirely yours to make!

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