No member of AA who has experience would get angry at someone who says that, most of us were a bit confused about these things ourselves.I was preached at for years and lived by rules and regulations of the Church. I'm done with that. I really don't want to make anyone angry, but this just rubs me the wrong way.
The main writer of the book Bill Wilson, sent out drafts to the early members for their comments on what he was writing. One of the things they objected to was he used words like must, and directions, they said alcoholics don't like being told what to do. So they changed where these words were used to the word suggestions, so instead of asking us to follow their directions, it was about following these suggestions. But I have heard some people interpret that word suggestion, something like saying if you jump out of a plane, it is a good suggestion to wear a parachute. In other words it may say suggestion, but if you want to recover from this decease you pretty well look at it as a must.
Well, please explain to me why the 12 steps are a must. If someone doesn't do the 12 steps, they are a failure and they will start drinking again. I don't agree with that. Everyone needs to do things on their own, in my opinion.
Once again, many of us have tried to do it our own way, the book says we thought we could find an easier softer way, and we went back to drink. The experience of every alcoholic in AA who is no longer struggling, no longer thinking about drinking, and living such a peaceful life it is hard to describe, we all got there by having a spiritual awaking as the result of the steps. Anyone who says sobriety is hard in any way, either has not done them or has made a half arsed attempt, especially where 4 & 5 is concerned.
I do a bit of that myself, some people in AA call folks like us 'big book thumpers,' we don't mind. Perhaps as you go along you will come to appreciate why we do it. If you find yourself in a meeting, and some person is talking about their troubles at home, another old lady says her cat is sick, this sort of thing happens in meetings, people use it as a venue to tell others their troubles like some sort of self help group, just looking for a pat on the back and someone to say it will be OK. Well that sort of stupidity might get you feeling better about a sick cat, it sure won't keep you sober and happy.But, people here quote BB like it is scripture. That, to me, turns me off. I'm sorry. I was preached at for years and lived by rules and regulations of the Church. I'm done with that.
Maybe you will take a listen to someone like Chris R who speaks about this sort of thing fairly often, go to you tube type in 'AA speaker Chris R' you will see many talks there.
I promise you if you do the steps and have the spiritual awaking, you will get to treasure every recommendation in the book as much as we do, and I wish you the best of luck in getting there.