Above criticism

AA-Groups-ClevelandBill White on varieties of secular AA experiences.

The ongoing evolution of A.A.’s story — its history — suggests that the fellowship will meet this challenge by finding ways to adapt to both religious renewal movements and cultural trends toward secularization without losing its essential character.

But “suggest” is all that history can do. The fundamental question for the future of Alcoholics Anonymous — which necessarily includes the present — is whether its Tradition that having “a desire to stop drinking” remains “the only requirement for A.A. membership” OR if membership becomes reserved exclusively for those who adhere to a verbatim interpretation of the Twelve Steps as they were written in 1939.

In short, will A.A. be able to find ways to embrace more “varieties” – or not?

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  1. In my experience, AA in our area is failing the challenge… A long time member that relapsed two years ago after 14 yrs of sobriety and has struggled horribly has been ostracized (like many of us) by ‘friends of Bill and Bob’ and shared his thanks to myself and another ‘slipper’ as we have been the ones to return his calls and do ‘fifth’ step (really pint calls)… AA has become a club for those with long term abstinence… most just as self centered to the extreme yet sober… reading James Allen, Emmet Fox, and the likes has provided me more benefit in 6 months than AA in 26 yrs (17 sober)… and our slipping fellow is now at 6 weeks without AA… selfishness is epidemic in our culture and AA is not immune….