Fearless, but so fearful

The 12 Steps are the AA program of recovery from alcoholism.

Re: Fearless, but so fearful

Postby Tosh » Sat Jun 18, 2016 10:05 am

Stepchild wrote:I know a lot of people that don't sponsor others. Many with decades of contented sobriety. You can carry the message and be of service...Work intensively with other alcoholics without being a sponsor. I think suggesting otherwise is ridiculous...Or just for ego inflation. The best sponsors I know....You'd never know they sponsored anyone....They don't boast about it or put pressure on others like they are doing it wrong because they don't sponsor people.
When the book was written...Nobody had taken these steps...Today millions have. I don't think it would be possible for everyone to have to rely on sponsoring people to remain sober...And many don't.


So you know a lot of people that don't work intensively with other alcoholics as per Chapter 7 and have happy and contented sobriety?

Ah, so we don't have to bother with Chapter 7 then? That's just another suggestion within a suggested program of action? We can substitute it for making coffee? :shock:

I think you're watering the A.A. message down, mate.

Brock will probably take issue with you too. He doesn't like people to share their experience where it conflicts with the A.A. message. He'll be all over you like a rash for that.

And there's millions upon millions of alcoholics 'out there'; A.A. only has a tiny fraction of the whole if the statistics are anywhere near to be relied upon. We don't have to wait till we see a newcomer at meetings, we can carry this message anywhere; it's highly portable; and works just as well outside of a meeting room. See Chapter 7 for some tips.
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)
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Re: Fearless, but so fearful

Postby Brock » Sat Jun 18, 2016 3:22 pm

Brock will probably take issue with you too. He doesn't like people to share their experience where it conflicts with the A.A. message. He'll be all over you like a rash for that.

Not really, we should apply a little common sense in interpreting the message of chapter seven, there are things there we are very unlikely to do is this day and age, we can't very well invite drunks in to our homes as freely as it advises, or have them mash up the place as it says here -
Your wife may sometimes say she is neglected. A drunk may smash the furniture in your home, or burn a mattress. You may have to fight with him if he is violent. Sometimes you will have to call a doctor and administer sedatives under his direction. Another time you may have to send for the police or an ambulance. Occasionally you will have to meet such conditions.

As time passed I believe Bill realized some things in the book might no longer apply such as the example above, and also other things would benefit from further explanation like steps 6 & 7, and this was done in the 12 & 12, including this part were he speaks about 12th step work -
Nor is this the only kind of Twelfth Step work. We sit in A.A. meetings and listen, not only to receive something ourselves, but to give the reassurance and support which our presence can bring. If our turn comes to speak at a meeting, we again try to carry A.A.'s message. Whether our audience is one or many, it is still Twelfth Step work. There are many opportunities even for those of us who feel unable to speak at meetings or who are so situated that we cannot do much face-to-face Twelfth Step work. We can be the ones who take on the unspectacular but important tasks that make good Twelfth Step work possible, perhaps arranging for the coffee and cake after the meetings, where so many skeptical, suspicious newcomers have found confidence and comfort in the laughter and talk. This is Twelfth Step work in the very best sense of the word.

He doesn't like people to share their experience where it conflicts with the A.A. message.

Happy to say I still like and respect Stepchild.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
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Re: Fearless, but so fearful

Postby Tosh » Sat Jun 18, 2016 3:44 pm

Brock wrote:
Brock will probably take issue with you too. He doesn't like people to share their experience where it conflicts with the A.A. message. He'll be all over you like a rash for that.

Not really, we should apply a little common sense in interpreting the message of chapter seven, there are things there we are very unlikely to do is this day and age, we can't very well invite drunks in to our homes as freely as it advises, or have them mash up the place as it says here -
Your wife may sometimes say she is neglected. A drunk may smash the furniture in your home, or burn a mattress. You may have to fight with him if he is violent. Sometimes you will have to call a doctor and administer sedatives under his direction. Another time you may have to send for the police or an ambulance. Occasionally you will have to meet such conditions.


The Big Book uses the word 'occasionally' not 'freely' as you put it.

And aside from throwing in red herrings, we both know there's nothing stopping you from searching out prospects outside of a meeting room; unless of course you prefer the easier softer way. To be honest whether you do, or not, is up to you, but you're the one who challenged Do'h when he used the word 'suggested' in a way you don't like, yet here you are cherry picking the program and ignoring some of the 'suggestions' yourself.

The 12 x 12 also says "Our Twelve Steps to recovery are suggestions" by the way; page 129 refers, which kinda takes us around a full circle. It does however go on to explain the paradox.
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)
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Re: Fearless, but so fearful

Postby D'oh » Sat Jun 18, 2016 4:00 pm

Brock wrote:I said this to reinforce a point I was trying to make -
We do know that in the 'old days' they went through the steps very quickly, and in the book under 'A Vision for You' we see things like this - “That afternoon he put on his clothes and walked from the hospital a free man.”

It was dismissed by someone saying this -
Does it not also say in that very chapter "Our book is meant to be suggestive only...even though the first 164 pages remain unchanged, they are still Suggestions.

The same person who now says in another thread -
Page 62, I go and reflect on that page often.
Above everything, we Alcoholics must be rid of this selfishness. We must, or it kills us! God makes that possible.
I cannot think of another place in the BB that explains the same MUST twice, with the consequences, if we fail to follow them.

That's an awful lot of “musts” for someone who insists it's all suggestions.

Was this not said just a page earlier? Yet the book should be "With a Little Common Sense" What page is that written on? I have had members stay in my home, mind you years ago. I might be a bit more concerned today, but I would not walk away from one in need, if they were honestly seeking an answer.

Not really, we should apply a little common sense in interpreting the message of chapter seven, there are things there we are very unlikely to do is this day and age, we can't very well invite drunks in to our homes as freely as it advises, or have them mash up the place as it says here -


My Profession of 26 years now, was offered to me by a Fellow Member. It also talks about that in the BB.
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Re: Fearless, but so fearful

Postby Brock » Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:21 pm

The Big Book uses the word 'occasionally' not 'freely' as you put it.

In this case I thought it would be obvious the word “freely” would be taken to mean without much worry or concern for our safety.
And aside from throwing in red herrings, we both know there's nothing stopping you from searching out prospects outside of a meeting room; unless of course you prefer the easier softer way.

I know you went on to say it's up to me whether I do or not, but quite honestly I have kind of had it with your judgments, it is one thing to judge how someone interprets the book, quite another to judge how they do their program. "We both know" my bloody foot, unless you walk in someone's shoes you shouldn't judge what they can or can not do. I have hinted of racial and cultural differences where I live standing in my way, why don't you come down to the Caribbean and see how many locals would want you to sponsor them, before assuming someone is just taking the easier softer way.

I quoted what Bill said about 12 step work and working with others, and he stated they are those “who are so situated that we cannot do much face-to-face Twelfth Step work.” And showed several other things we can do instead, all things I am actively engaged in, he said these things are Twelfth Step work in the very best sense of the word.
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Re: Fearless, but so fearful

Postby Stepchild » Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:40 pm

And I have gotten a street alcoholic into a meeting (just once, but I keep on trying, it's almost like a game;


I don't know much about AA across the pond...But here we have treatment centers that supply a steady stream of potential sponsees. But not everyone is comfortable working with others Tosh...That's just people. This is a program about finding a power greater than ourselves that allows us to live happily without alcohol. What should I say to someone with 20 years sober that's not out grabbing drunks off the street? Their sobriety is no good? I quit playing God when I took the third step....I'm happy for anyone that finds this solution....If they're still sober they must be doing something right.
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Re: Fearless, but so fearful

Postby Tosh » Sun Jun 19, 2016 12:12 am

Brock and Stepchild, I hear you both and agree with you; you don't have to work intensively with alkies to have a happy and contented sobriety; I agree with all your other points too. I was being purposely gladiatorial to show that the Big Book is a program of suggestions that don't have to be adhered to like it's some religious doctrine and we'll burn if we don't.

My own thoughts about the 'carry this message' portion of the 12th Step is that the principle behind it points to being kind and compassionate to others. I.e. not being a total selfcentred gimp all of the time. Of course this can be done in many ways, in all of our affairs.

Brock wrote:I quoted what Bill said about 12 step work and working with others,


And I quoted what Bill said about "Our Twelve Steps to recovery are suggestions". I note you did not comment on that.

As a side note; more so to Stepchild; here in the UK, unless you've got a lot of money, treatment centres are extremely difficult to get into. They'll involve a waiting list of a year-or-more, which is pretty pointless; normally by this stage there's not a year in them to wait. A detox at the accident and emergency is about the best you can hope for.

As for 'not everyone is comfortable working with others'; no-one is comfortable working with others to begin with. Recovery involves coming out of our comfort zones; not doing things the easier softer way. Unfortunately, if we're talking Big Book, with a whole chapter donated to just one action step, it seems this is where the weight of our program lies.
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)
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Re: Fearless, but so fearful

Postby PaigeB » Sun Jun 19, 2016 12:40 am

As for 'not everyone is comfortable working with others'; no-one is comfortable working with others to begin with. Recovery involves coming out of our comfort zones; not doing things the easier softer way. Unfortunately, if we're talking Big Book, with a whole chapter donated to just one action step, it seems this is where the weight of our program lies.

I have to ditto that Tosh!

And it is time to close this thread, as we traditionally do, at the end (ish) of 5 pages.

Enjoy the day! And all you Father's out there ~ give yourself a break to day and hit a meeting filled with gratitude! :wink:
If I'm not able to say how I'm working my program today, then I'm not working my program.
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