Friday, July 15, 2016
A Different Solution
At this point in my sobriety, I'm happy with my progress. I'm over three months sober. I haven't had an urge in a long while. Life's a lot less stressful.
I've been trying to define what spirituality means to me and I feel it's associated with nature and evolution. I really connect to the science series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey hosted by Neil DeGrasse Tyson. I live my life by strictly adhering to a simple set of rules. Test ideas by experiment and observation. Build on those ideas that pass the test. Reject the ones that fail. Follow the evidence wherever it leads and question everything. And always be prepared to accept being wrong and admitting it.
What drove me to search for another solution other than the Big Book was its insistence that God was the solution. My 4th Step Workshop ended with the last paragraph of chapter 5: How It Works. "In this book you read again and again that faith did for us what we could not do for ourselves. We hope you are convinced now that God can remove whatever self-will has blocked you off from Him." It doesn't give any other solution for those who don't believe in God. The book assumes that you'll eventually come around to believing in a higher power that will magically remove your will to drink. And although there's the ever present phrase, "God as we understand Him", what they're really referring to is Christianity. I don't have a belief in any religion or god. I have an understanding of nature; I'm an atheist.
The 4th Step Workshop ended with the same assumption as the book that because you endured its five weeks you now believe God will keep you sober. Out of the fifteen people that started this workshop only two completed it; I wonder how many of them left because of their lack of belief in a god as their solution. And as the only other person left was praising the instructors in faith, I was getting ill and desired a drink. I quickly excused myself. What I really wanted to do was explain how useless this was, but I've had conversations with the instructors before and they are preachers, not listeners. They have the mindset of a cult leader that nothing they hear can change their mind about anything. And I came to this conclusion by discussing something completely unrelated to AA. They act like those infected characters in that new show Brain Dead.
So, I'll keep you informed about my progress with this new (to me) book. Thanks for reading.
-- Without Wax