PP 50-51 We Agnostics (Why have faith)

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
Post Reply
User avatar
Karl R
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 3701
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2008 3:06 pm

PP 50-51 We Agnostics (Why have faith)

Post by Karl R » Thu Oct 02, 2008 3:34 am

Good Morning,

A prayer to start us today.

HP I pray that I be aware of those around me who have tapped into their Higher Power. Amen.

Yesterday, we looked at the value of looking at people around us who lead spiritual lives in the hope of developing our own concept of HP.

Today's passage suggests as proof of existence of a higher power that there are indeed people who have tapped into this and

"in the face of the total failure of their human resources, they found that a new power, peace, happiness, and sense of direction flowed into them. This happened soon after they wholeheartedly met a few simple requirements"

This does not mean we have to adopt the concept of HP that the people around us have. It only suggests that the proof of the existence or at least possibility of a higher power exists in the action of other people's higher power in their own life.

Today's homework. Take a virtual donut when turning in your completed assignment.

Anyone care to share from their ES and H what they consider proof of the existence of a HP in their life?


have a terrific Thursday,
Karl



Instead, we looked at the human defects of these people, and sometimes used their shortcomings as a basis of wholesale condemnation. We talked of intolerance, while we were intolerant ourselves. We missed the reality and the beauty of the forest because we were diverted by the ugliness of some of its trees. We never gave the spiritual side of life a fair hearing.
In our personal stories you will find a wide variation in the way each teller approaches and conceives of the Power which is greater than himself. Whether we agree with a particular approach or conception seems to make little difference. Experience has taught us that these are matters about which, for our purpose, we need not be worried. They are questions for each individual to settle for himself.
On one proposition, however, these men and women are strikingly agreed. Every one of them has gained access to, and believes in, a Power greater than himself. This Power has in each case accomplished the miraculous, the humanly impossible. As a celebrated American statesman put it, "Let's look at the record."
Here are thousands of men and women, worldly indeed. They flatly declare that since they have come to believe in a Power greater than themselves, to take a certain attitude toward that Power, and to do certain simple things, there has been a revolutionary change in their way of living and thinking. In the face of collapse and despair, in the face of the total failure of their human resources, they found that a new power, peace, happiness, and sense of direction flowed into them. This happened soon after they wholeheartedly met a few simple requirements. Once confused and baffled by the seeming futility of existence, they show the underlying reasons why they were making heavy going of life. Leaving aside the drink question, they tell why living was so unsatisfactory. They show how the change came over them. When many hundreds of people are able to say that the consciousness of the Presence of God is today the most important fact of their lives, they present a powerful reason why one should have faith.

jak
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 944
Joined: Sun Mar 30, 2008 8:50 am
Location: Watertown SD

Post by jak » Thu Oct 02, 2008 3:49 am

I don't think I can word it better than today's text that Karl has posted. I relate to this experience that Bill expressed.

I was messed up and spiraling down. I have been changed in ways that I would not have sought or chosen. And I like the change. And I have been given an awareness that there is more change needed as well as the real hope that there is more change available.

I was told that there is a Higher power and I tried to believe, then, after a time, I did believe.

And now...I know.

Karl, I was recently diagnosed with diabetes so I was wondering, what is the carb count on those Virtual sugar bombs?

User avatar
Karl R
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 3701
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2008 3:06 pm

Post by Karl R » Thu Oct 02, 2008 3:59 am

J.

Our prayers are with you. And just for you-I've changed from donuts to blueberry bran muffins-just for today. (Check picture).

in peace this morning,
Karl

Oliver
Forums Long Timer
Posts: 908
Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2004 1:01 am

Re: 10/2/08 BB We Agnostics pp 50-51 (tapping into a new pow

Post by Oliver » Thu Oct 02, 2008 4:15 am

Karl R wrote: Anyone care to share from their ES and H what they consider proof of the existence of a HP in their life?[/b]
The fact that I have not had a drink today. (I tried for so long to do that on my own, that it must be due to something more powerful than myself).
Oliver
"In exchange for bottle and hangover, I have been given the keys to the kingdom."

User avatar
jujub
Forums Enthusiast
Posts: 143
Joined: Thu Jul 24, 2008 8:40 am
Location: southeastern wisconsin

Post by jujub » Sun Dec 06, 2009 2:52 pm

hey all,

proof? i haven't had a drink today. and i know it ain't me accomplishing that. my hp speaks to me in the beauty and order of nature. not so long ago there was nothing beautiful in my eyes. nothing but darkness and ugliness. it isn't that way today. in fact, it's really cold outside, snow is on the way, but i look out my window and see hope. i've got a "new pair of glasses". only through aa and you people and a higher power that is a lot bigger than my disease of alcoholism. thanks.

judi, alcoholic

User avatar
Karl R
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 3701
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2008 3:06 pm

Re: PP 50-51 We Agnostics (Why have faith)

Post by Karl R » Sun Dec 06, 2009 3:19 pm

On one proposition, however, these men and women are strikingly agreed. Every one of them has gained access to, and believes in, a Power greater than himself. This Power has in each case accomplished the miraculous, the humanly impossible. As a celebrated American statesman put it, "Let's look at the record."
Here are thousands of men and women, worldly indeed. They flatly declare that since they have come to believe in a Power greater than themselves, to take a certain attitude toward that Power, and to do certain simple things, there has been a revolutionary change in their way of living and thinking. In the face of collapse and despair, in the face of the total failure of their human resources, they found that a new power, peace, happiness, and sense of direction flowed into them. This happened soon after they wholeheartedly met a few simple requirements. Once confused and baffled by the seeming futility of existence, they show the underlying reasons why they were making heavy going of life. Leaving aside the drink question, they tell why living was so unsatisfactory. They show how the change came over them. When many hundreds of people are able to say that the consciousness of the Presence of God is today the most important fact of their lives, they present a powerful reason why one should have faith.
Powerful statements in this section. They fit my experience exactly. Once confused and baffled in a futile existence....now in posession of a revolutionary change in my way of living and thinking. My HP has done this for me.

Belief in a power greater then myself was a beginning......then the action of doing a few simple things(the steps).

cheers,
Karl

User avatar
leejosepho
Forums Old Timer
Posts: 1885
Joined: Mon Sep 07, 2009 4:55 am
Location: 200 miles south of Little Rock
Contact:

Re: PP 50-51 We Agnostics (Why have faith)

Post by leejosepho » Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:53 am

... we might have observed that many spiritually-minded persons of all races, colors, and creeds were demonstrating a degree of stability, happiness and usefulness which we should have sought ourselves.

Instead, we looked at the human defects of these people, and sometimes used their shortcomings as a basis of wholesale condemnation. We talked of intolerance, while we were intolerant ourselves. We missed the reality and the beauty of the forest because we were diverted by the ugliness of some of its trees. We never gave the spiritual side of life a fair hearing.
No two of us will be identical in how or why we might have never given "the spiritual side of life a fair hearing", so to speak, but I have occasionally wondered how many of us had ever been offered a fair hearing of the spiritual side of life to even consider. I grew up in a religious setting where there did seem to be a few "ugly trees", but it was not until I got to A.A. that I really began seeing how beautiful "the forest" could actually be. It was here amongst others like ourselves that I found acceptance as I was rather than being judged for what I was not, and it was here that I was not expected to pretend to understand and practice spiritual principles I did not even really know.
In our personal stories you will find a wide variation in the way each teller approaches and conceives of the Power which is greater than himself. Whether we agree with a particular approach or conception seems to make little difference. Experience has taught us that these are matters about which, for our purpose, we need not be worried. They are questions for each individual to settle for himself.
In other words, we are not concerned about whether or not we each and all view "God" in precisely the same way. Rather, we just share with others our common experience that "God as you understand God" (page 164) is now "doing for us what we could not do for ourselves." (page 84) To wit:
On one proposition ... these men and women are strikingly agreed. Every one of them has gained access to, and believes in, a Power greater than himself. This Power has in each case accomplished the miraculous, the humanly impossible.
What that "Power" might actually be, and whether or not we all call that Power "God", we are still "restored and united under [that 'One who has all power' (page 59)], with hearts and minds attuned to the welfare of others ..." (page 161)
"... a common solution ... a way out on which we can absolutely agree, and upon which we can join in brotherly and harmonious action ... the great news (-- the A.A. message --) this book carries to those who suffer from alcoholism." (page 17)

Again:
Here are thousands of men and women, worldly indeed. They flatly declare that since they have come to believe in a Power greater than themselves ...
... and we might do well to take note there:

"They (plural) flatly declare that since they have come to believe in a Power (singular) greater than themselves (plural) ..."
... to take a certain attitude toward that (single) Power, and to do certain simple things, there has been a revolutionary change in their way of living and thinking.
And of course, it was nothing other than the pain of our alcoholic living that has driven us toward that kind of unity.
In the face of collapse and despair, in the face of the total failure of their human resources, they found that a new power, peace, happiness, and sense of direction flowed into them. This happened soon after they wholeheartedly met a few simple requirements. Once confused and baffled by the seeming futility of existence, they show the underlying reasons why they were making heavy going of life. Leaving aside the drink question ...
Whether drunk or sober at various times in our pasts ...
... they tell why living was so unsatisfactory. They show how the change came over them. When many hundreds of people are able to say that the consciousness of the Presence of God is today the most important fact of their lives, they present a powerful reason why one should have faith.
=======================
"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)
=======================

User avatar
PaigeB
Trusted Servant
Posts: 8549
Joined: Fri Jun 24, 2011 12:28 pm
Location: Iowa USA

Re: PP 50-51 We Agnostics (Why have faith)

Post by PaigeB » Tue Apr 10, 2012 12:06 pm

In the face of collapse and despair, in the face of the total failure of their human resources,
and
...Not once have we sought.... true brotherhood... (pg 53, Step 4, of 12& 12)
My human resources did not fail me, I had failed to seek them and find them, in the light of common alcoholic experience, as my true brothers. I have found in Alcoholics Anonymous faith in humankind and a new pair of glasses to see my part in the madness that had plagued me.
Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have - the key to life and happiness for others. With it you can avert death and misery for them. page 124 BB

Post Reply