Spirituality As I Understand It

Self Pity

Chapter 11: Do Tell! Stories by Atheists and Agnostics in AA Gabe S. I showed signs of what I think of as “spiritual malady” from as far back as I can remember. As a child, I was absorbed in fantasy. I was the God of my own fantasies, creating worlds … Continue reading

Perils Facing Agnostic AA

AA Agnostica V

By Vic L. My sense is that there are three dangers that we in agnostic AA face and that make us uncomfortable. So I will take a deep breath and jump in. Purity fears As a rule, we AA members who attend agnostic AA meetings do so to avoid “the god … Continue reading

From Believer to Non-Believer


At around 8 years sober, he redefined his Higher Power By Bob S., Louisville, Ky. My journey in AA began in 1985 and I have been sober ever since. In the beginning, I wanted sobriety because I had hit an emotional bottom. I was very willing to accept the program … Continue reading

Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion

Waking Up

Reviewed by Paul T. In his “Conclusion” Sam Harris writes: Spirituality remains the great hole in secularism, humanism, rationalism, atheism, and all other defensive postures that reasonable men and women strike in the presence of unreasonable faith. People on both sides of this divide imagine that visionary experience has no place … Continue reading

Experiencing Spirituality

Experiencing Spirituality

Experiencing Spirituality: Finding Meaning Through Storytelling By Ernest Kurtz & Katherine Ketcham Reviewed by John M. For many readers at AA Agnostica, there is much in this newly released book that will offend your secular sensibilities. At the same time, there are a number of stories and quotations cited by the … Continue reading

A Fellowship of the Religious?

Back to Basics

By Thomas B. Prologue Recently at an AA meeting I became aware of something which in my previous 40 plus years of continuous recovery, I had missed. On page 164 of the Big Book, AA is described by Bill as a Fellowship of the Spirit, capital F & capital S! A … Continue reading

The Biology of Spirituality

Vera Tarman

By Roger C. Doctor Vera Tarman, a specialist in addiction behaviour and treatment and the Medical Director at Renascent, a treatment facility for men and women suffering from alcoholism and addiction, recently shared her views on the neurochemical basis of recovery and spirituality in a talk at the University of … Continue reading

A History of Agnostic Groups in AA

A History

Review by Chris G. When the Big Book, Alcoholics Anonymous, was being written there was an irritating atheist in the mix: Jim Burwell. He was responsible for the phrase “God, as we understood Him” in the Steps and for AA’s Third Tradition: “The only requirement for membership is a desire … Continue reading

One’s religion is an outside issue

Father Pete Watters

By Thomas B. Like many folks at AA Agnostica and elsewhere, I’m most disappointed by the decision of the General Service Board and Conference to again not publish the proposed pamphlet, “AA — Spiritual, Not Religious.” I was further dismayed to learn from Roger C.’s article The General Service Conference … Continue reading

A Lesson for AA from our Betters

Girl Scouts

By Frank M. “You’ve got a higher power problem,” my old AA sponsor told me. It’s something he’d asserted on a number of occasions when the subject of God and the Steps and my atheism came up. He repeated it when we were working on my Fifth Step. I had … Continue reading

My Last Binge

River Thames and Tower Bridge at Dusk, London, England

By Laurie A. My wife thought I would get up and walk out from my first meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous. The meeting started with a recitation of the 12 Steps suggested as a programme of recovery and six of them mention God or “Him” or “Power.” I was a surly, … Continue reading