Secular AA Pamphlets
By Roger C
Over the years, a small number of secular AA members, groups and organizations have created pamphlets.
Why have more pamphlets not been printed and shared?
Well, partly because it’s complicated work. And, if taken to a printer, the more elaborate ones can be expensive. But you can indeed print them yourself.
Pamphlets can be very helpful. Are you familiar with AA’s Tradition Five? Here it is: “Each group has but one primary purpose – to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.”
A pamphlet is a great way to carry the message about the existence of a secular AA group, and where and when its meetings are held. It’s also a great way to let alcoholics know about your meeting format. And, if you want, you can share that the meetings are not God-obsessed or allied with Christianity, and thus do not end with the Lord’s Prayer. Go for it!
Pamphlets can be placed on the Literature table at secular meetings. And they can also be shared at “traditional” meetings, at Intergroups and at AA Central Offices. I think we are finally getting to the point where it is understood that AA is meant to be for anyone with a desire to stop drinking.
By the way, that’s Tradition Three.
What follows are eight pamphlets. We begin with What is secular AA? put together by the We Agnostics group in Tempe, Arizona.
And then we move on to four group pamphlets, What is a “secular” meeting? by the Secular Sobriety Group in Traverse City, Michigan; A Newcomers Guide by the Atheists, Agnostics and All Others group in Boise, Idaho; Quad-A: Alcoholics Anonymous for Atheists and Agnostics, which was put together by groups in Chicago; and Freethinkers in AA, from Denver and Aurora, Colorado.
We are pleased to include two pamphlets by our recently deceased friend, life-j, and these are As Bill ALSO Sees It and Other AA Literature.
Finally, we close with a pamphlet created by John S that is all about the website AA Beyond Belief.
Below are images of exactly half of each one of the pamphlets. To see the complete pamphlet, just click on the image and you can then access a PDF and download it if you wish.
Here we go:
What is secular AA?
Secular AA is a movement within Alcoholics Anonymous that seeks to widen our gateway so that all who suffer may pass through and find long-term sobriety in AA regardless of their belief or lack of belief in a God… When anyone reaches out, we want the hand of AA to be there.
What is a Secular Meeting?
Because secular AA meetings are not religious, no one is asked to engage in any religious practices such as reciting prayers. This includes the Serenity Prayer and The Lord’s Prayer which comes directly from the Christian Bible. As part of the meeting format, no one proclaims: “there is One who has all power – that One is God. May you find Him now!”
A Newcomer’s Guide
Atheists, Agnostics & All Others was founded in 2008 by rebels/visionaries… to serve as an alternative, inclusive environment for people of all types of belief and non-belief in AA… We have grown and continue to serve as an oasis for atheists, agnostics, free thinkers and all others seeking sobriety within AA.
Quad-A: Alcoholics Anonymous for Atheists and Agnostics
“To us, the Realm of Spirit is broad, roomy, all inclusive; never exclusive or forbidding to those who earnestly seek. It is open, we believe, to all…” (Alcoholics Anonymous, p. 46). Quad-A acknowledges recovering persons may have a valid and fulfilling sobriety with or without belief in a Higher Power.
Freethinkers in AA
Freethinkers in AA is an open meeting for those seeking help with their own problems with alcohol, as well as our supporters, individuals dealing with other addictions and others interested in how our program works. Our members share a common desire to embrace AA without the religious ideas and practices found at more “traditional” AA meetings.
As Bill ALSO Sees It
Our membership ought to include all who suffer from alcoholism. Hence we may refuse none who wish to recover. Nor ought AA membership ever depend upon money or conformity. Any two or three alcoholics gathered together for sobriety may call themselves an A.A. group… (Tradition Three)
Other AA Literature
(The term Conference Approved) does not imply Conference disapproval of other material about AA. A great deal of literature helpful to alcoholics is published by others, and AA does not try to tell any individual member what he or she may or may not read. (Service Material from the General Service Office)
AA Beyond Belief
AA Beyond Belief is a home for agnostics, atheists, freethinkers, and all others who seek a secular path in AA. We publish personal stories written by secular members of Alcoholics Anonymous. We also feature a podcast and audio recordings of secular AA speakers. Let our stories serve as a beacon of hope to still suffering alcoholics who fear that AA does not have a place for them.
Again, click on anyone of the images above to see and/or download a PDF of the pamphlet. And if you want to create your own pamphlet but need some help, don’t hesitate to contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be pleased to post another article about another eight or so secular AA pamphlets!