Monday, December 09, 2013

In Alcoholics Anonymous Today: Reading the Bible, Trusting in God, and Utilizing the Twelve Steps

Many of us have awakened to the fact that Alcoholics Anonymous and its basic ideas came from the Bible. A.A.'s Conference-approved pamphlet P-53 quotes the last major talk of Dr. Bob. And several things are made clear by him. First, in the early days of A.A., they  had and needed no Steps, no Traditions, no Big Book, no war stories, and no meetings like those today. They believed the answers to their problems were in the Bible; and they said that Jesus's Sermon on the Mount, the Book of James, and 1 Corinthians were absolutely essential to their program. See Dr. Bob went on to say that the basic ideas for the Twelve Steps came from the teachings, study, and effort that had been going on in the Christian Fellowship from 1935 to 1938 when Bill's work on the "new version" began with his Steps.
Today, A.A. is not monolithic. It welcomes Protestants, Roman Catholics, Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, atheists, agnostics, humanists, and people who prefer not to believe in anything at all. That's just the way it is. And that is the A.A. to which I belong and in which I have been continuously active and sober for more than 27 years. Those who are Christians, like myself, and those who want God's help can readily apply the old school program as summarized on page 131 of DR. BOB and the Good Oldtimers in A.A. today. And they certainly can do so without dumping A.A. and running to some other fellowship--Christian or otherwise. The two books by Dick B. and Ken B. show the viewpoints of the pioneers in their stories in the First Edition of the Big Book.The first is Pioneer Stories in Alcoholics Anonymous.
The source material can be found in the new Dover Publications reprint of the First Edition of the Big Book with a 27  page introduction by Dick B. Telling how to harmonize this pioneer A.A. with the A.A. most of us know today--as replicated in the latest edition of the Big Book--is our book Stick with the Winners! They key to cure in A.A. today is learning what the pioneers did with their original Christian Fellowship, how thoroughly the Big Book "Solution" on page 25 squares with that action, and how to glorify and serve God and others while pursuing your own religious viewpoints and relying on God in A.A. today.

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