Wednesday, February 28, 2007

My Big Book

This is the big book someone gave me at my first meeting on July 24, 1984. It is a 3rd edition. None of the pages are attached to the binding anymore. I love that book. If I could have a wish for everyone who comes to AA, it might be: May your big book fall apart, may all the pages be so highlighted and underlined that you are barely able to read them, may you have so many momentos of your sobriety tucked away in the book that it is difficult to close, may you treasure this book until the day you die - sober.

I don't need to tell you, but I will anyway: if you stick to that book, do what it says, and teach others to do what it says, you will have a life beyond your wildest dreams. A good life.

It is snowing. I am actually relieved because I was planning to run this morning for the third day in a row which is hard on this old lady's body. The rest of my week is wacked! My daughters turn 28 tomorrow, so I am making dinner for them. They asked for pizza. Of all the things I can cook, they always ask for pizza. Oh well. It is good. I think I will make seviche for an appetizer. yummmmy.

Have a happy Wednesday everyone.

"I've seen this in the 'AA Grapevine' a lot of times, and I've had people say it to me personally, and I've heard people get up in meetings and make the same statement: The statement is, 'I came into AA solely for the purpose of sobriety, but it has been through AA that I have found God.' I feel that is about the most wonderful thing that a person can do." -- Alcoholics Anonymous (3rd ed.) p. 192


lushgurl said...

AWWW I am so loving your Big Book! The one I have was given to me in Toronto about 16 years ago now. Sometimes when I read it, I can feel all the other sober hands that held it before me. What a great post!
I am available for homemade pizza! My Angel always asks for MY spaghetti EVERY weekend, pizza would be a nice change! *love ya*

AAwoken said...

I had a book like that. Was totally in love with it. Then one day a guy showed up at my small little meeting and needed a book. I gave it to him. I also never saw him again.
Now I have a coupple of new 4th ed Big Books. I also went and got myself a leather bound study version of the BB. This will be my new book for eternity....until someone asks me for it.

Noor Azman Othman GBE said...

Well worn, well read, well cooked pizza for me too.


Well, happy birthday daughter of MC.

Mary Christine said...

fyi: i have many other copies of the big book on hand in case i need to give one away. honest.

BigSkymAAck said...

Great Book. Or first ones are treasures.

dAAve said...


Christine said...

what is seviche?

how blessed to have daughters turning 28, have fun!

what a beautiful Big Book

Mary Christine said...

In its classic form, ceviche is composed of chunks of raw fish, with lime or lemon juice though sometimes bitter orange (naranja agria), sliced onion, minced Peruvian ají limo, and sometimes Andean rocoto. The mixture is marinated and served at room temperature

Pam said...

YES...I love my old Big Book...I was told to buy a new one every year so that I would not be tempted to always go right to the underlined/hilighted texts...and I have bought several new ones....but when I want to find a particular passage...I always go to my original. I loved this post darlin'...great.


I love it...the book that is and you of course.

Lounge Daddy said...

My wife also has a Big Book that she is hanging onto as well... it was her brother's. He didn't live to see his 21st birthday. :(

I plan on hanging onto my AA Big Book for decades to come - for the rest of my life.
Thanks for the wishes :) I be sure that it is so marked with highlighter that it glows in the dark.

MICKY said...

I imagine 12 Step recovery programs are a slow slide into the jaws of Satan. I was involved with this evil “satanic cult” [AA] for over 30 years but was saved through the power of Jesus Christ. He directed me to a therapist who was into “real” recovery, not the mind destroying, soul destroying, cult, which is AA. I have met two Steppers recently & I imagine they are completely devoid of any emotion or insight. I feel pain because both these men are decent human beings but AA has destroyed their individuality & they have no idea how to relate apart from expounding AA propaganda. I imagine Hell to be a continuous flow of AA meetings without any light at the end of the tunnel because one never recovers'. I beg you people who are in 12 Step programs, to get out before it is too late.
How does one recover when one is handing one’s power over to AA. The 12 Steps were written out of Wilson’s head, he certainly didn’t get his guidance from the Bible. I imagine he was an agent of Satan & he & Smith’s “cult religion” has filled millions of Steppers with their anti - Christ propaganda.
Step Three of AA is "Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood him." While many in the Oxford Group placed their faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour, there was much leeway given. Shoemaker, a leader of the Oxford Group, says, "The true meaning of faith is self-surrender to God." He further explains: Surrender to whatever you know about Him, or believe must be the truth about Him. Surrender to Him, if necessary, in total ignorance of Him. Far more important that you touch Him than that you understand Him at first. Put yourself in His hands. Whatever He is, as William James said, He is more ideal than we are. Make the leap. Give yourself to Him. Aside from capitalizing the "H," which Christians do to refer to the God of the Bible, "Him" could refer to any god of one’s own making BEDPAN]. Can you see what is happening to you? Ask Jesus to take control of your lives, read the Bible & instead of 12 Step groups, go to Church. BURN YOUR BIG BOOK or use it as TOILET PAPER. Can you see the difference: With The 12 Steps, you never recover but with John 3:16 you are guaranteed Eternal Salvation. The “ball is in your court”

MICKY said...

If someone asked you, "Of all the religions in the world, what makes you think you've figured out which one is right?" would you know the answer with confidence? Peter said to "always be ready to give a defence to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you" (1 Peter 3:15). You'll grow unshakable in your faith depending on how much of the Bible you know and how obedient you are to it. One certainly won't find salvation reading the SATANIC GARBAGE - the BIG BOOK of ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS. -- Knowing God's Word gives assurance of salvation.

MICKY said...

1939 Alcoholics Anonymous Published
Alcoholics Anonymous, commonly called the Big Book, is an attempt to collect and codify all knowledge gained by the new fellowships. Because of the differences between New York and Akron, the result is not a perfect description of either group’s program but represents a middle ground between the two, less religious than Akron, but still less social than New York. The final manuscript shows that, whatever the program of Alcoholics Anonymous may actually be, it is much removed from the Oxford Group. The Big Book expresses a clear Conversion Experience view of recovery. It suggests that a conversion experience, or a spiritual experience, may be necessary for recovery from alcoholism. The Big Book has high expectations for alcoholics who successfully work the Steps. By the time alcoholics reach Step Ten, the Big Book promises that they will no longer be possessed by the obsession to drink, and will experience a reversal of their natural inclinations toward selfishness. Self-centredness will be replaced by altruism and reliance upon God. Even though the Big Book expresses a strong Conversion Experience view of recovery, it still differs from Oxford Group thinking in four important ways. First, the Big Book contains no reference to JESUS CHRIST. To a modern reader, the Big Book may seem to smack of Christian language, with constant reference to God as “He.” In its own time, however, and in the context of the Oxford Group, the Big Book was actually taking a big step away from Christian language and theology by leaving out references to JESUS. Furthermore, the Big Book makes clear that each alcoholic can choose his or her own concept of God. Second, the Big Book is primarily concerned with alcohol. While the Oxford Group is concerned with the whole of a person’s moral condition, and treats alcoholism as one aspect of that condition, the Big Book focuses on alcohol first and foremost. Third, the process of inventory outlined in the Big Book has important differences from the Oxford Group practice of the Four Absolutes. Instead of a straightforward self-examination using the ideals of Honesty, Purity, Unselfishness, and Love, the Big Book outlines a three-stage inventory, examining resentments, fears, and sexual behavior. In examining resentments, for example, the inventory-taker looks for ways in which he or she has been selfish, self-seeking, dishonest, and afraid. This is similar to the Four Absolutes, because these four negative qualities roughly match up with the four positive qualities of the Absolutes. However, Big Book inventory is more limited than the Four Absolutes, because it only deals with resentment, fear, and sexual behaviour, while the Four Absolutes can be applied much more broadly. The fourth major difference between the Big Book and the program of the Oxford Group is the substitution of the Eleventh Step for the practice of Guidance. The Big Book describes a practice of meditating in the morning upon the coming day’s events, and then reviewing one’s conduct in the evening. Nowhere is there any mention of Guidance. The accomplishment of the Big Book is that it codifies Oxford Group techniques, removing elements that would cause undo resistance in the average alcoholic. The program it describes allows for a conversion experience not grounded in the context of an organized religion. The Big Book speaks of this as a “spiritual experience” rather than a conversion experience. All the elements of a conversion experience are present without the necessity of assenting to the doctrines of a specific church. This means that the psychological process of conversion is now available outside of an evangelical Christian context. However, no one is actually practicing the program outlined in the Big Book. The Big Book does not describe the practice of either the New York or the Akron fellowship; instead, it represents a middle ground between the practices of both groups. At the time of the publication of the Big Book, the balance of power between Akron and New York is even. In the following years, AA headquarters is established in New York and a growing program looks to Bill and to the social program of New York for guidance. Before long, Akron ’s becomes a minority viewpoint in AA, and Bill is able to write a new interpretation of the Twelve Steps that is a better expression of the New York program. This new interpretation will take the form of Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions. Chapter 4. "Laying aside. Prejudice" (regarding AA's religious dogma and very specific description of "God") is a prerequisite to getting results in AA, which is (ultimately -- according to Chapter 4) a prerequisite to remaining alive They do not say you have to believe in anything it is suggested that you find a power greater than yourself. That power could be anything you imagine - BEDPAN, ELVIS PRESLEY, BILL WILSON? The "Big Book" offers you two options: Believe in "God" or die. This is elucidated very clearly in Chapter 4: But the god AA believes in is not JESUS CHRIST of the Bible - the Son of God. There is no mention at all of JESUS CHRIST anywhere in the BIG BOOK or the 12 STEPS. Much to our relief; we discovered we did not need to consider another’s conception of God. Our own conception, however inadequate, was sufficient to make the approach and to affect a contact with Him…When, therefore, we speak to you of God, and we mean your own conception of God. Alcoholics Anonymous. We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows. Self-seeking will slip away. Our whole attitude and outlook on life will change. We will intuitively know how to handle situations that used to baffle us. We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves. Alcoholics Anonymous. We were in a position where life was becoming impossible, and if we had passed into the region from which there is no return through human aid, we had but two alternatives: One was to go on to the bitter end, blotting out the consciousness of our intolerable situation as best we could; and the other, to accept spiritual help. Alcoholics Anonymous.