The Lords prayer

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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby Blue Moon » Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:16 am

Soberguy27 wrote:I had a new comer ask me why we say christian prayers if aa is not religious.


It's historic. AA was originally an offshoot from the Oxford Groups in the 1930s, which was a Christian organisation. Roland Hazard was a member of the Oxford Groups. He was alcoholic, and took his problem to the world-famous psychiatrist Karl Jung, who outlined to him the spiritual solution he had heard about but never been able to get working. Roland recovered, brought this recovery message back to the Oxford Groups, and went to court to present a new idea for helping the alcoholic Ebby T.

Meanwhile, Bill W had visited with Dr Silkworth, who defined the alcoholic problem but had no soiution to offer. Ebby eventually visited with Bill to offer that solution, as given to him by Roland. So Bill joined the Oxford Groups, but soon realised that their particular brand of Christianity was unlikely to work (because they dealt in absolutes, whereas the only one your average alcoholic can achieve is absolutely drunk).

Bill eventually met Dr Bob, and AA was born. But for the next few years, the Big Book was not yet written. For Dr Bob, this wasn't a problem as he was already a member of the Oxford movement before ever meeting Bill, and he was devoutly religious, therefore he was able to use the King James Bible to help alcoholics until the Big Book was published.

Roland was never a member of AA. He and others were content to stay with the Oxford Groups. He brought the solution to Ebby, who brought it to Bill. Bill brought a clearer definition of the problem into AA from Dr Silkworth. So Bill combined Silkworth's description of the problem, with Roland's description of the solution, embodied in his original 6 Steps (which he later expanded to 12). Dr Bob brought much of the action in working with other alcoholics, using Christian principles as the basis for recovery.

Quite soon after all this, an agnostic came in and presented the concept of "God of our own understanding". So any expectation of a specifically Christian conception of a Higher Power was discarded. Christian prayers, however, remained as part of the structure.

For more info, check out Appendix II in the Big Book, the chapter "Bill's Story", and the bit in chapter 7 where it says the newcomer may choose any conception of God he likes provided it makes sense to him.

Soberguy27 wrote:He said he had asked someone else at a meeting and just got an earful of because aa is spiritual and that means that most people in aa are christians.

Maybe that's code for "I don't know but my ego won't let me admit as much".
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby Soberguy27 » Mon Sep 25, 2017 8:21 pm

The question was not whether you should talk about the god of your understanding at meetings. The question was should we be saying a christian prayer hben aa says that they are not allied with any sect or denomination. Anyway, I do appreciate all your responses. I'm sure this will come up from time to time. It won't stop me from attending meetings.
Each group or meeting will do what they want anyway. I guess if someone has a big enough resentment they will just start their own meeting. My sponsor once told me that some of the best meetings came out of a resentment. Thanks again for all your input. I always like to hear from all sides.
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby desypete » Mon Sep 25, 2017 10:52 pm

Soberguy27 wrote:The question was not whether you should talk about the god of your understanding at meetings. The question was should we be saying a christian prayer hben aa says that they are not allied with any sect or denomination. Anyway, I do appreciate all your responses. I'm sure this will come up from time to time. It won't stop me from attending meetings.
Each group or meeting will do what they want anyway. I guess if someone has a big enough resentment they will just start their own meeting. My sponsor once told me that some of the best meetings came out of a resentment. Thanks again for all your input. I always like to hear from all sides.



they say all you need to open up a new meeting is a coffee pot and a resentment =biggrin

just how many meetings have been started up because a member doesn't like the way an other meeting is run and they believe they know just what the new comer should get from aa or how the message should be delivered etc so off they go raging and out to show us all in aa just how aa should be run, which of course is there way =biggrin

but as an ironic twist it actually helps to have as many meetings with different formats as it offers up the differences that members have in aa so we as memebers can get a choice and go to meetings we like and enjoy
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby Patsy© » Tue Sep 26, 2017 3:17 am

Soberguy27 wrote:The question was not whether you should talk about the god of your understanding at meetings. The question was should we be saying a christian prayer hben aa says that they are not allied with any sect or denomination. Anyway, I do appreciate all your responses. I'm sure this will come up from time to time. It won't stop me from attending meetings.
Each group or meeting will do what they want anyway. I guess if someone has a big enough resentment they will just start their own meeting. My sponsor once told me that some of the best meetings came out of a resentment. Thanks again for all your input. I always like to hear from all sides.


Hi Soberguy,

At our AA group meeting, there are many who have different religions, beliefs, as well as atheists and one is Wicca.

We have a large membership at our AA Group and almost every one of the above are there at our AA business meetings, voting. I have never seen one of them raise objections to any prayer that we open the meeting with or close the meeting with. There are other AA groups in this area (there are over 2000 AA meetings a week here in the Boston area) that use other prayers (The Serenity Prayer) to open and close and still other AA Groups have voted to use something completely different and are not Prayers at all.

The A.A. Group members who do not want to say a prayer of any kind, just quietly say what they choose to.
To Thine Own Self Be True

When I say the Lord's Prayer today, and I do.....I keep in mind that the Lord of my understanding is the Universe and the Lord for someone else, is their own choice.

I look forward to reading your shares Soberguy, you bring up some great points :)
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby Cristy99 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 10:08 am

Hi Soberguy!!!

There is no shame in NOT participating in parts of a meeting with which you don't agree. You should never receive judgment.

When I go to a meeting, I take everything with a grain of salt. I take what I can use and leave the rest. I try to share things that helped and are helping me in my walk, and try to be careful about stating something as an absolute that might offend someone. Meeting guidelines I have read say to share in the first person ("I"), not "we" or "you." There are like 8 billion people on Earth and we will not always agree with each other's opinions.

As an aside: My group has only one Atheist that I know of. I don't know if that small ratio of Atheists to non-Atheists is common everywhere. What I do know is that Bill W. and the first AA's intended the program to work for alcoholism for everyone. There is an issue of the Grapevine devoted mostly to/about Atheists. I found it very interesting. I read the whole issue and really enjoyed learning how the program works for Atheists. I am glad to have a tiny bit of insight just in case I might someday be in a position to help an Atheistic newcomer. I don't have the link. I found it very interesting.

Have a great day, and try not to get too frustrated with the Jesus freaks. I think they probably mean well and want others to find happiness and peace. Sometimes it's hard for people to realize there is more than one way to skin a cat.

Here's a funny: The Atheist I mentioned in mt group and I are very good friends. He participates in the holding hands at the end of meetings, but does not pray. Sometimes I ask him to take us out (to lead The Lord's Prayer) just to push his buttons. Makes him laugh. :lol: :lol:
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby Cristy99 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 10:19 am

Patsy wrote:

I look forward to reading your shares Soberguy, you bring up some great points :)



Me too Soberguy!! Please keep posting!!
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby kdub720 » Thu Sep 28, 2017 2:24 pm

This is a great discussion. For me it is all about the higher power and less about community. I know we all have our own walk and ways we got to here and now. But for me it is and will continue to derive me strength from the higher power. I know that everyone believes in something, It is just a matter of finding what you truly believe in. Thanks for the good talk today.
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby Wiganman » Sun Oct 01, 2017 1:02 am

This is an interesting topic for me. When I first went to AA I was living in Canada virtually every meeting I attended ended with the Lords prayer. I was uncomfortable with that but it was suggested to me that I just stand in the circle and joining in with the prayer was entirely up to me. I used to have a resentment against this but as I have worked through the steps this became a non-issue for me.

When I returned to the UK I found that virtually no meetings in my area included the lords prayer. Instead we finish the meeting with the serenity prayer which was always done at the start in Canada.


I don't know the reason for this but I put it down to cultural differences. In my opinion the UK's culture is far less organised religion than North America. Another example of this is when we say the serenity prayer in my home group we always start with "Using the word God as you do or do not understand it"

To me it religion is irrelevant it is all down to following the steps and having that spiritual experience / personality change.
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby desypete » Sun Oct 01, 2017 9:51 am

Wiganman wrote:This is an interesting topic for me. When I first went to AA I was living in Canada virtually every meeting I attended ended with the Lords prayer. I was uncomfortable with that but it was suggested to me that I just stand in the circle and joining in with the prayer was entirely up to me. I used to have a resentment against this but as I have worked through the steps this became a non-issue for me.

When I returned to the UK I found that virtually no meetings in my area included the lords prayer. Instead we finish the meeting with the serenity prayer which was always done at the start in Canada.


I don't know the reason for this but I put it down to cultural differences. In my opinion the UK's culture is far less organised religion than North America. Another example of this is when we say the serenity prayer in my home group we always start with "Using the word God as you do or do not understand it"

To me it religion is irrelevant it is all down to following the steps and having that spiritual experience / personality change.


the only time i ever say the serenity prayer is when i do the main share in the meeting, as we use it to close the meeting. its just my way of showing respect

but in the meetings i never join in with saying any sort of prayer, as i dont believe in god, so there is no point in me being dishonest,
i believe in the fellowship and the people of aa as my power its where i get my power from and my direction
aa nor any person ever needs me to worship them, well there are a few in aa who believe they should be worshipped lol but they haven't grown up yet. still living in there own world where they know it all,
you can easy see them who suffer as they repeatedly try to make out what should or should not be said or done in aa meetings.
some have even got super sober and dont need the meetings anymore. they have found this thing called god so they dont need us anymore ?
thankfully i stick around those with long term sobriety, those who still attend meetings, do there service work in the fellowship and above all else, they are there just ready to help anyone new or old who walks in through the door with kindness and love be it tough love to help a stubborn member get a kick up the backside to help them to see themselves or a hug for someone who might be in real trouble with there life on that day

they have done there steps, they are living there steps each and everyday and above all else there so very grateful for what aa has given to them hence they put so much into trying to pay back

i have followed there example and i try to continue to follow there example in my own life daily. thanks to the steps and my sponsor and my fellow aa memebers who have helped me so many times over so many years
aa is my life and my soul these days but i dont need to preach about it i just get out there and on with the day its simple and the more simple i keep it the easyier it is for me
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby Db1105 » Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:49 pm

I don't agree with closing meetings with it. The group conscience does. I just stay silent until its over. These are the people that saved my life. It doesn't hurt me to shut my yap for a minute for what you have given me.
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Re: The Lords prayer

Postby Patsy© » Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:15 pm

Db1105 wrote:I don't agree with closing meetings with it. The group conscience does. I just stay silent until its over. These are the people that saved my life. It doesn't hurt me to shut my yap for a minute for what you have given me.


Now THAT is keeping it simple! :D :D :D
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