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Jim B. and Freethought Groups

When I was first asked to write a series of articles on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of the “third founder” of AA, Jimmy B, who put “God as we understand Him” in the Steps, I thought to end the trilogy with the story of Jim’s sobriety as he recapped it on the occasion […]

The Truth Behind Tradition Three

Bill W.’s grandfather was a drunk.  Grandfather Wilson, an innkeeper, had had alcohol turn against him. “One Sunday morning in despair he climbed to the top of Mount Aeolus and beseeched God to help him.  He saw a blinding light and felt a great wind, and rushed down to interrupt the service at the Congregational Church. Demanding that the […]

Evolution of a Higher Power

Bill Wilson wrote the Twelve Steps in December 1938 in the space of one night. Bill reports, “I was greatly pleased with what I had written”1 and he was unprepared for the response he got when he read his steps to the young New York group. “The ‘liberals’ were appalled and said so.”2 The ‘radicals,’ […]

2020 Virtual Share-A-Thon

Stony Brook and Bayshore Freethinkers participated in a joint workshop on “Secular Sobriety” at the 2020 Suffolk Intergroup Share-A-Thon on Sunday October 4th. Brian from Stony Brook and Hazel from Bayshore were our speakers.  The Zoom event was well attended, with lively audience participation and interest. Click on the link below for more information. Secular […]

A 3rd Step Prayer for Atheists

The 3rd Step Prayer for Atheists * (or The Non-Prayer 3rd Step) I commit myself to a set of principles, for my ongoing sobriety and my growth. I am now open to accepting whatever life brings me, as I know that through living by AA’s principles of love, tolerance, service and sobriety, every day is […]

Connection – The Power of AA

We often hear alcoholism described in the rooms of AA as a cunning, baffling, and powerful disease. During a closed discussion meeting of my home group, one member referred to alcoholism as “insidious”: something that proceeds in a gradual, subtle way, but with very harmful effects. Looking up insidious in the dictionary, he discovered that […]

The Birthplace of Secular AA

The first secular AA meeting specifically for atheists and agnostics was held in Chicago.  Quad A began meeting in 1975, and is still going strong today!  Visit their website and read what the Chicago Tribune had to say about this groundbreaking group. Quad-A is the most common reference for group meetings attended mostly by atheists, agnostics, and […]

Widening Our Gateway

In 1957, Bill Wilson wrote in Alcoholics Anonymous Comes of Age (page 167) that “in Step Two we decided to describe God as a ‘Power greater than ourselves.’ In Steps Three and Eleven we inserted the words ‘God as we understood Him.’ From Step Seven we deleted the expression ‘on our knees.’ And, as a […]