Religion and AA

The book Alcoholics Anonymous, aka The Big Book, is the basic text for the AA program of sobriety. "Alcoholics Anonymous" Copyright 2012 AAWS, Inc. All Rights, Reserved. Short excerpts used by permission of AAWS

Religion and AA

Postby aprilc » Sat Nov 07, 2015 3:54 pm

Hi folks. Is there anyone out there who can confirm whether or not it states in the Big Book that AA'ers should join the church? There seems to be a movement in my town that states this from the Big Book...
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Re: Religion and AA

Postby ezdzit247 » Sat Nov 07, 2015 4:01 pm

aprilc wrote:Hi folks. Is there anyone out there who can confirm whether or not it states in the Big Book that AA'ers should join the church? There seems to be a movement in my town that states this from the Big Book...


No where in the Big Book does it state, suggest, or imply that AA members should join any church. In fact, our Traditions clearly state that AA is not allied with any "sect or denomination".
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Re: Religion and AA

Postby leejosepho » Sat Nov 07, 2015 4:47 pm

Here is the essence of what is shared in our book:

"We think it no concern of ours what religious bodies our members identify themselves with (or not) as individuals. This should be an entirely personal affair which each one decides for himself in the light of past associations, or his present choice. Not all of us join religious bodies, but most of us favor such memberships." (page 28)

I think it would be safe to say many early A.A.s *assumed* others *might* join the churches or such of their own choices, but I am not aware of that ever being suggested or recommended as if in any way required or actually even necessary for recovery. My only suggestion there would be to be cautious about ever being (or remaining, if applicable) "violently anti-religious" (page 45) in any kind of way. After all, "The basic principles of A.A., as they are known today, were borrowed mainly from the fields of religion and medicine..." (12&12, Forewords)

The field of medicine told us about alcoholism and essentially said "Go see God", and then the field of religion showed us how that could be done...and those are the facts about A.A. and religion.
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("Lois Remembers", page 168, quoting Bill, emphasis added)
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Re: Religion and AA

Postby aprilc » Sat Nov 07, 2015 5:07 pm

Thank's to those who replied to my post.
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Re: Religion and AA

Postby leejosepho » Sat Nov 07, 2015 5:13 pm

You are welcome, and welcome to e-aa! I had missed seeing that was your first post here. Then, I had also missed this:

aprilc wrote:There seems to be a movement in my town that states this from the Big Book...

I can guess at what that "movement" might be -- I know of at least two -- and I believe no A.A. group should be doing that.
=======================
"We A.A.s do not *stay* away from drinking [one day at a
time] -- we *grow* away from drinking [one day at a time]."
("Lois Remembers", page 168, quoting Bill, emphasis added)
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Should = ought to?

Postby No.3 » Wed Dec 23, 2015 5:05 pm

aprilc wrote:Hi folks. Is there anyone out there who can confirm whether or not it states in the Big Book that AA'ers should join the church? There seems to be a movement in my town that states this from the Big Book...


As others noted, AA does NOT tell us we must join churches, temples, mosques or synagogues ... but it's reasonably inferred that we ought to. Quite alot in the Big Book suggests (hints at) that outcome, YES. It's also fairly clear though: your choice. (I don't shy away from this, if a newcomer or sponsee asks. They almost never do.)

So far, personally I've chosen not to "join" any - but I wouldn't rule it out either. I don't get upset when (very rarely) someone mentions J.C. in a meeting (oooh, brave!) because where I got sober I did hear that alot. Here, it's just... kinda weird. I smile, because I like weirdos and brave folks. Also, last I checked, we're still meeting in a church (basement, upstairs or chapel room) right? If someone can drop the f-bomb, someone else can mention Jesus: welcome!

I'm basically an accomodationist agnostic who has no problem with 'soul-seekers.' Perhaps I'm more tolerant than most.

I'm genuinely curious what the "movement" is (where?) Down in the Mid-South in the 1980s and early 1990s, I was oblivious to any 'nebulous forces' likewise.
"The Group demands total loyalty to the inner group. Some have had to leave the movement because of the Groups' demands which conflict with truth or duty." The Oxford Groups by Herbert H. Henson, 1933, pages 73-74.
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