AA & Big Book Related

Origins of the Christian Recovery Movement

Effective Christian Help for Drunks by Five Important Groups & Organizations in the 1800's-long before A.A. was founded in 1935

Young Men's Christian Association lay workers (1870). Non-denominational work
in revival meetings with conversions and Bible studies. Galvanized the Great Awakening of 1875 in St. Johnsbury. (Bob and Bill both had "Y" connections).

The Gospel Rescue Missions (1872) exemplified by Jerry McAuley and the Water Street Mission in NY, NY - followed by Calvary Rescue Mission where Bill and Ebby each separately made their decisions for Jesus Christ.

Evangelists and Revivalists (1875) Charles Finney, John B. Gough, Dwight Moody, Ira

"God as We Understood Him"-The A.A. Story

An Alleged Compromise That Opened the A.A. Door to Atheists and Agnostics

My Own Experience

A.A. - "Stick with the Winners" - Preparing the Newcomer

"Stick with the winners!" That's one of those often heard, but little understood suggestions a newcomer hears both in his treatment program and in the recovery rooms of Twelve Step Fellowships. The problem is: Who are the winners! How do I find them! What do they do and say that is recognizable and profitable. And if the newcomer is not prepared to spot them, seek them, and follow them, he can't reap the benefit of "sticking" with them. We believe the winners will subscribe to the following.

Is God a Choice for You in Your Recovery Today?

In this article about God and Alcoholics Anonymous, we pose the question: Is recovery, healing, spiritual growth, and Divine Aid (as Bill Wilson called it) in A.A. still about "finding God" and "establishing a relationship with God"? A.A.'s basic text still says, "Yes." And you can find the documentation on pages 29, 58-59 of the Fourth Edition of Alcoholics Anonymous, published in 2001. See also Dick B., God and Alcoholism (www.dickb.com/godandalcoholism.shtml)

Alcoholics Anonymous and the Bible

You would be surprised at how many people in Alcoholics Anonymous meetings today think that you can't mention the Bible, share from the Bible, discuss the Bible, or even place a Bible on a table in the meetings.

This is a sketch of Alcoholics Anonymous and the Bible--by no means comprehensive, but definitely informative and useful.

    1. The first three Alcoholics Anonymous members--Bill Wilson, Dr. Bob Smith, and attorney Bill Dotson--all had Christian upbringings. All had studied the Bible long before A.A. began. And all believed in God.

    2. When Bill and Bob were formulating the Akron Alcoholics Anonymous Christian recovery program in the Smith Home in Akron in the summer of 1935, Dr. Bob's wife read the Bible to Bill and Bob every single day.

Alcoholics Anonymous Recovery: Twelve Steps to What!

Folks who study the Big Book, take the Twelve Steps, and carefully consider the Alcoholics Anonymous program of recovery as it is laid out in the book "Alcoholics Anonymous" should really have no problem defining the recovery program, its specified course of action, and the intended objective of the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.

So we will begin by looking at what the Founders and the Big Book have said about the Twelve Step program of recovery and the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous.

Bill Wilson put these important comments in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, and here is how they are still expressed today:

Alcoholics Anonymous Questions Often Asked

Many times, questions are asked about Alcoholics Anonymous (A.A.) by courts, by clergy, by recovering alcoholics and addicts, and by members of the public. They have to do with genuine concerns as to what A.A. is and does; what the history of Alcoholics Anonymous is; where A.A. came from; what someone has to believe in order to be a "member;" and just how A.A., its recovery program, and its fellowship should be characterized.

The following questions and answers are those I have learned as a long-time A.A. member-recovered for over 24 years; as one who has researched and published on A.A. history and roots for over 20 years; and as one who receives these questions with some frequency-by phone, by email, by Facebook comments, by live audiences, and by mail.

A.A. & the So-called "Original Manuscript"

Many who follow my blogs, articles, books, and talks on real Alcoholics Anonymous history have asked if I have heard of the so-called Alcoholics Anonymous being published by Hazelden. A typical publicity article can be found in the Boorstein article published by The Washington Post.

As a writer, historian, retired attorney, Bible student, CDAAC, and an active and recovered member of the Alcoholics Anonymous fellowship, I have devoted 20 years to investigating Alcoholics Anonymous origins, history, founding, original program, astonishing successes and changed. See http://www.dickb.com.

Several remarks are appropriate at this time:

What was Surrender in Early AA?

What Was a Surrender in Early A.A.?

In the original A.A. “Christian fellowship” program founded in Akron in June 1935, pioneer newcomers had a very clear idea of A.A.’s requirement that they surrender.

The Surrender at Akron City Hospital

First, at the close of the usually-required, initial hospitalization in Akron City Hospital, there was a ceremony that involved only A.A. cofounder Dr. Bob and the newcomer with whom he had been working. It soon involved two events:
(1) The question Dr. Bob asked the newcomer:

    “Young feller, do you believe in God? Not a God, but God!”1 [emphasis in original]

(2) Then the requirement that the newcomer get out of bed, get down on his knees, and pray -- with Dr. Bob leading the prayer.2

Studying the 12 Steps

What is it you want to study?

There are many ways to study the Twelve Steps.

One is to memorize their language. Another is to note that the "published" 12 Steps are not themselves the "steps we took." Hence, you can and should study the instructions as to "how" to take the Steps; and only when you have followed the instructions successfully, can you say that you have "taken" a Step-i.e. made an inventory, made amends.

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