It isn’t until you read the text The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous or sit within the fellowship’s meeting rooms long enough that you understand there is something special happening here. More than a bunch of drunks getting sober, there is a magnificent transformation occurring within the attendees who keep coming to meeting and do something called “taking the steps”. Under false preconceptions, people largely assume two things about the twelve steps.
First, that it is a religious program that resembles a cult. Second, that it is only for people who need to get sober. Spirituality is not reserved for the forsaken. However, many in recovery commonly quip that religion is for those avoiding hell while spirituality is for those who have already visited it. The twelve steps are a guide to a “spiritual experience”, the psychic change, as The Big Book authors describe it, which is necessary to recovery from the insanity which is alcoholism.
Arguing against the universality of the spiritual principles laid out in the twelve steps is a moot effort when considering the explosion of twelve step recovery. Alcoholics Anonymous was founded a mere eighty years ago. Today, the twelve step fellowship is global, translated into dozens of languages. Additionally, the twelve steps have been adopted to fit the needs of other inexplicable illnesses such as gambling, sex, overeating, and even codependency. Simply because spiritual experiences are universal, the twelve step process is an accessible manner of healing and living for everyone.
Completing the twelve steps is an empowering process, as author Mark Molldrem explains. Where one was once stuck in their lives without a solution for moving forward, the twelve steps act as a catalyst, propelling one into motion in their lives once more. Alcoholics are commonly characterized by stigma of deceitfulness, immorality, cowardice, and even insanity. The path laid out by the twelve steps, indeed the life that is possible through spiritual recovery, offers the opposite. Honesty, integrity, courage, and sanity are promises held true at the end of the twelve steps. Each step holds a spiritual principle that becomes an adopted way of life. As The Big Book authors explain, not drinking is not enough. Getting sober is so much more than learning how “not to drink”. Recovery is about learning how to live.
Spiritual experiences are just the beginning of recovery. Aurora Recovery Center incorporates the spiritual teachings of Alcoholics Anonymous into a full service treatment program for alcoholism, addiction, and dual-diagnosis problems. We offer spiritual care and mentoring as part of our comprehensive treatment programs. Are you ready to heal? Call us today at 1844-515-STOP.