An Athiest's Journey Through AA

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-15-2009
An Athiest's Journey Through AA
Fri, 09-02-2011 - 6:19pm

I've been to an Al-Anon meeting with my sister and my brother's wife before (the offender was my brother), so I know that both AA and Al-Anon refer to a "higher power," especially in AA's 12 step program.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-28-2009
Sat, 10-01-2011 - 6:57pm

I know that even though AA uses the expression "Higher Power", a lot of people think that it means a Christian God, but I think the article is spot on:

I’ve become aware that 12-step programs are home to people from every religion, denomination, sect, cult, political tilt, gender identity, sexual preference, economic strata, racial and ethnic background, believers in gun rights and abortion rights and the right to home schooling, drinkers of coffee and tea, whiskey and mouthwash, people who sleep on their sides or their stomachs or sidewalks. Anyone who cares to sober up, in other words, can give it a shot the 12-step way. The official preamble Alcoholics Anonymous states: "The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking.”

I have even heard that Higher Power can be loosely interpreted as a Group of Drunks (G.O.D.). I agree with the author that having a religious affiliation is not a requirement to benefit from AA. A religiously open-mind helps, since many people statistically speaking will be devout Christians.

For some reason, I'm thinking that one of the early members of AA was an atheist/agnostic? Wonder if I'm remembering correctly?

BTW, I think anyone can attend an Open AA meeting. Even someone who is just curious about what it is all about.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-04-2005
Sat, 09-03-2011 - 9:38am
I think that's great she wrote that. I bet a lot of Atheists/Agnostics who would have otherwise walked away from AA and the help it can provide will see that they can adapt it for their life.