Big Book Homework

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Big Book Homework

Postby sithrocker » Thu Jan 26, 2017 2:48 pm

I have the unfortunate position of having a sponsor that just tells me to read the book. He has not given me any of the "cool assignments" that many of my friends have received over the years. I am now employed in "the field" and am looking for some assignments to give my guys. Like "Find the four things that wont keep you sober in the first 58 pages". "Find the 12 Facts in the first 164". What I would like from y'all assignments that your sponsor gave you that made you Read the book to find the answer as opposed to googling the answer.
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby avaneesh912 » Thu Jan 26, 2017 3:36 pm

I am not sure buddy. I hear all these weird exercises. The sponsors role is to educate the fatal progressive nature of the disease and every second we waste fooling around is going to cost somebody heavy. Yet people keep doing this. Perhaps these are hard drinkers who fooled around the fellowship for a while and one day they decided to work the 12 steps on the side, just so they can wear it as a badge.
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby positrac » Fri Jan 27, 2017 3:27 am

I came into AA this time in 1989 and back in the day in California of all places I attended meetings and I became familiar with the literature. But one rule was no sex for one year with any person! See mentally we are real fragile and we can get messed up real fast doing physical stuff.

But back to these seek and find exercises....hmmmm maye if you are sitting around and you are openly studying the BB or 12X12 you can challenge those points as to educate in person and not to belittle these guys. Our goals as sponsors is to educate and not become a drill sergeant. In 1989 AA was not like today and the old timers broke it off if you messed around and so I was ok with that way of learning as it was the it was.

help them find sobriety and not another bottle is my opinion.
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby Noels » Fri Jan 27, 2017 5:10 am

sithrocker wrote:I have the unfortunate position of having a sponsor that just tells me to read the book. He has not given me any of the "cool assignments" that many of my friends have received over the years. I am now employed in "the field" and am looking for some assignments to give my guys. Like "Find the four things that wont keep you sober in the first 58 pages". "Find the 12 Facts in the first 164". What I would like from y'all assignments that your sponsor gave you that made you Read the book to find the answer as opposed to googling the answer.


Hi Sith and welcome to e-aa :D may I suggest you think back to the time when you were new. What questions did you have, what things did you wonder about and use that as a guide for your sponsees. I found that many of the answers to questions I had was in the BB. I just had to be patient and continue reading until I got to that particular page but since youd like to make it more interesting for your sponsees just draft your own list of assignments from your own experiences when everything was still new to you? (extract from the memory bank :D ) You'll be surprised at how easy it is once you put your mind to it :D

Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby D'oh » Fri Jan 27, 2017 6:31 am


I have the unfortunate position of having a sponsor that just tells me to read the book.


A Smart Sponsor. All of the answers are in there. The Homework is to find them.

Even though my Sponsor had me read 83-86 every night and 86-88 every morning, right from the 2nd Step.

Keep Googling your answer, or open the Big Book, either way you find your answer.
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby avaneesh912 » Fri Jan 27, 2017 8:14 am

Like "Find the four things that wont keep you sober in the first 58 pages".


How about 1 simple reason? Not having a spiritual awakening will get you drunk?
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby Spirit Flower » Fri Jan 27, 2017 8:48 am

My first sponsor just said: find the pages in the bb that most mean step 1 to you and read that every day. Then after about 2 weeks, she said the same for step 2.... etc.
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby Brock » Fri Jan 27, 2017 11:20 am

It's nice that you are looking to make things more interesting for those you sponsor. Over the years I have heard or read many accounts of members just doing what their sponsor did with them, “this is how my sponsor showed me this is how I show others,” so your sponsor is partly responsible for you wanting to do something different, well done in not just following what he did.

On the other hand, it takes a bit of common and other senses to try to vary the approach from one person to another. My one and only attempt at getting a sponsor, ended when he sent a list of prayers with the firm instruction that these were the only prayers I was to say. I objected since I was a praying person and had many good prayers of my own, no dice said he the prayers must be the ones he says, that's what his sponsor showed him and it worked, good bye said me and never looked back, we must not be firm set in our approach like he was. Someone might not think like the OP that these are “cool assignments,” and we can't force anyone by saying they should be willing to go to any length, if they don't like the idea of 'homework,' try another approach, like some suggested here.

I am not sure what is meant by this - “I am now employed in "the field" and am looking for some assignments to give my guys.” I guess employed means getting paid, it's one thing to get paid as a councilor of some type, but we must not confuse this with sponsorship, sponsors are not paid.

Lastly, and this is quite common these days, members speaking about my guys and my sponsees, why not just sponsor one person, too many times it seems like the more people I am sponsoring the better I am. And members are wearing it like a badge of honor, even speaking about my sponsees have many sponsees of their own, that's how well I taught them. The book says “nothing will so much insure immunity from drinking as intensive work with other alcoholics. It works when other activities fail.” But how strong are some of our members on the “other activities,” like trying to be so on fire spiritually that we walk in the sunlight of the spirit continuously. I fear that some members could not stay sober without a stable of sponsees depending on them, and they in turn depending on the sponsees, and that's not what AA is about. Anyone who is not absolutely sure, that they could live happily sober without sponsees, and for that matter without meetings, like many of us do, either by choice or due to location, should take a long hard look at themselves, because I suspect they are missing out on a lot of what this program is designed to do.
Last edited by Brock on Fri Jan 27, 2017 6:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby ezdzit247 » Fri Jan 27, 2017 2:36 pm

Hi sithrocker

Regarding your question, when I was employed in "the field" of alcohol recovery, it was necessary for me to always be mindful of the fact that I was wearing a different "hat" from that of a "hat" of an AA member and to remember that it wasn't part of my job description to be an AA sponsor to any of my clients. As an AA member, I sponsored AA members I met in the AA fellowship, but I never sponsored any clients I met as an employee of a treatment program. Please clarify which "hat" you were wearing when you posted your question about big book homework?
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby tomsteve » Sat Jan 28, 2017 7:34 am

I don't find it a sponsors duty to assign anything. we aren't teachers- we are guides through the steps.
only thing I would say even resembled an assignment was my sponsot tellin me to stop tryin to complicate the 4th step,do it like it suggests in the bb, and it was be easier.

why complicate a simple program with assignments? seems that's playin God and sayin I know what a sponsee needs to learn.
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby tomsteve » Sat Jan 28, 2017 7:41 am

avaneesh912 wrote:I am not sure buddy. I hear all these weird exercises.


never understood em myself. I think the word "simple" is used about 20 times in the big book.

who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program
and to do certain simple things
This happened soon after they wholeheartedly met a few simple requirements
provided we took other simple steps.
So we let God discipline us in the simple way we have just outlined

justa few of them
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby D'oh » Sat Jan 28, 2017 5:57 pm

who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program


I have been quoting this a lot at Meeting recently. I hear a lot of people reading this-that and other books "Looking for the Answer" while it is right there in the first 164 pages. "One Day and one Step at a time."

I can't think of an Easier Softer way. KISS, (keep it simple stupid)
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby Brock » Sun Jan 29, 2017 4:49 am

I hear a lot of people reading this-that and other books "Looking for the Answer" while it is right there in the first 164 pages.

I certainly agree with the keep it simple idea, and that the answer to the initial drink problem lies in the first 164. But we must keep in mind that the AA program is more than stopping drinking, it's about spiritual growth, that's what leads to an increase in the contentment and happiness we seek. The people I have seem here write about additional literature, and also those mentioning other books in meetings, were all in reference to those of a spiritual type, the big book tells us to do that in the chapter “Into Action” -
There are many helpful books also. Suggestions about these may be obtained from one's priest, minister, or rabbi. Be quick to see where religious people are right. Make use of what they offer.
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby D'oh » Sun Jan 29, 2017 7:41 am

Hey, everyone one has there own Program, and enhancements and knowledge is always great. I am mostly thinking of the one's that seem to still be searching for "It". You can se the one's that got "It" and those that don't, and those that might be looking for an Easier Softer Way. Their words and actions have tell tale signs.

I remember looking hard for "It" when I found "It" seemingly right at my feet. "Completely give themselves to this simple Program"
Our book is meant to be suggestive only. We realize we know only a little. God will constantly disclose more to you and to us. Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still sick. The answers will come, if your own house is in order. But obviously you cannot transmit something you haven’t got. See to it that your relationship with Him is right, and great events will come to pass for you and countless others. This is the Great Fact for us.


I hold the Book very closely as directions to a Relationship with my Higher Power. Where that leads me is His Will.
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Re: Big Book Homework

Postby clouds » Sun Jan 29, 2017 8:52 am

I don't find the helpfulness in those excersizes you mentioned. My full time objective in my early years in AA were spent on understanding and practicing the 12 step principles to the best of my ability in all my affairs and I frankly wouldn't have spent my time on anything so ridiculous. I don't consider myself or my original sponsor a h-rd a-s either.
Keep it Simple, and stay sober.
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