Lies Recited At Most A.A. Meetings
(a.k.a. Lies within the Beginning of the Fifth Chapter of the "Big Book")
Tuesday, October 18, 2005 - dr.bomb
Will they? Maybe. Certainly a few may wind up finding up this page one way or the other. I don't know and really don't care. Maybe the real question I should be asking is, "Do they care enough to want to learn the truth?" I guess they just want to leave that door for future intoxication open for tomorrow or the 25th Hour and keep torturing themselves as the Bastard laughs at them at it becomes their true Higher Power as the human being within "slips away".
The reading in question is chock full of lies, distortions and an outright denial of reality. Just the reading itself proves that the first 164 pages of Saint Wilson's Bible has not aged particularly well. The often-read first few pages of Chapter Five: "How It Works", deserves a thorough dissection.
"Rarely have we seen a person fail who has thoroughly followed our path."
Only if the cult members are so self-absorbed that they never take a good hard look around the room can that be a true statement.
Actually, it is quite easy to see why the Buchmanites never "see" a person
fail: 95% of all newcomers, within a year, quit showing up at A.A. The remaining
5% are who remain in "The Rooms". A graph from one of A.A.'s internal documents
This is also an example of how Buchmanites hedge their bets through their rhetoric. I've been to hundreds of meetings and have seen plenty of people fail to hold together much in the way of sober Time (usually a couple months on average). I have witnessed people who have tried their hardest to work the program yet wound up more miserable than before as the alleged "serenity" evaporated into deep depression and sadness. Personally, I had one former friend drug themselves into oblivion and wind up in the emergency room while still reciting the though-terminating cliches of Buchmanism and another member who broke down at a meeting just because they couldn't figure out how to "turn it over".
Are these people people failures because they're not following the path? No! All are following the doctrine as outlined in Alcoholics Anonymous perfectly. The learned helplessness, despair and depression are results of repressing normal human emotions such as anger and resentment plus returning to the same problems over and over without any resolution whatsoever meeting after meeting. They know something is wrong and instead of following their own intuition they betray their own human thoughts and ideas as being sick.
In the end the alternative of this despair coupled with the feeling of being "backed into the corner" of the alleged "last house on the block", getting blindingly ripped, seems to be a much better alternative than the "wall-talking" at every meeting. Yet, as all of this goes on, it's all the fault of the person. The Steps are divinely inspired and perfect in the eyes of God. "They fail because they're not following the path!" is the typical refrain.
What is the most disturbing of all is the plight of William Griffith Wilson. He suffered from a 11-year long bout of crippling depression. During that period of time Wilson wrote the book Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions as the guide to thoroughly working the Steps and achieving serenity. When read in light of his depression the entire book comes across as one of the most twisted, hateful projections and stereotypes of those who practice the tenets of Buchmanism: alcoholics.
Therefore, when one thoroughly follows the path, one may become so spiritually serene that they'll never notice that they're fully addicted to caffeine, nicotine and spending their days sullen and holding their head in their hands at their desk within a deep, dark depression. They may even leave this mortal coil due to emphysema and cancer just as William Griffith Wilson did! Also, since Wilson never worked the Steps, does that mean that various psychoactive drugs coupled with the DT's from the previous bathtub gin bender will also be employed just to get that H.P. on?
At least there is that one thing which can make them happy. Just remember that Wilson's cohort, Dr. Robert Holbrook Smith, desperately wanted that whiskey near the end of his days. It would be much more honest to state the truth: "Rarely have we seen a person succeed at staying mentally rational and abstinent from recreational drugs who has thoroughly followed our path."
That is a lie!
The moment they show up, the newcomers know they have a drinking problem, provided they weren't coerced by some fascistic government entity under "God Control" who believed that such people should become more "God-Fearing" (a euphemism for bigoted, and if only that entity knew of life within the cult) or, actually, more in fear of that entity's power. With that in mind, wouldn't sentencing to mandatory CHURCH attendance within an actual religious denomination be far more appropriate or would that cause some legal problems along the lines of the recognition of the Jeffersonian idea of separation of religion and state within the First Amendment?
But hey! A.A. is "spiritual, not religious!" However, according to the Good Book known as Webster's New World Thesaurus...
That is a lie!
The cult is just playing its infantile
And, if it wasn't for my authentic rigorous honesty through vigorous fact-checking, I wouldn't have brought any of that up!
Unfortunately, through the years, A.A. has become a humble program of coerced religious indoctrination by the criminal justice system with over 66% of those in A.A. unconstutionally mandated to attend or face more criminal consequences by the system itself. Certainly if the state were more concerned about the probationer's spirituality they'd mandate attendance at an actual church or synagogue instead of the counterfeit religious gatherings within their own basements. Within the cleansing light of the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights, such an action would be painfully obvious as being violations of one's own civil liberties concerning the separation of religion and state within the Establishment Clause and the coercion into such obviously religious practices of prayer and confession within the Free Exercise Clause. So the Buchmanites, in all their dubious wisdom, mindlessly chant the sloganeer's lie that A.A. is "spiritual, not religious" and hoping that the more they chant that particular slogan the more people will believe it despite the facts at hand.
Anyhow, the stereotyping begins: In the cult alcoholics are "constitutionally incapable of being honest with themselves". They won't "recover" if they don't dedicate themselves to A.A.'s "simple program", a.k.a. the Twelve Steps. And why would the Buchmanites lie? They're alive and allegedly helping others to recover from alcoholism!
At least that's what I initially thought until March of 2004 when I learned of what Rational Recovery actually was by visiting its own website, learning AVRTTM in an hour and everything changed afterwards. Since then I have learned much more which refutes ALL the idiocy and lies within the Fifth Chapter, much less the book Alcoholics Anonymous in its entirety!
Likewise, the membership of A.A. is seen as "honest" in the eyes of the newcomer. Here is a person who has had enough of booze and is looking for that advice on how to quit drinking. And, when the newcomer sees the outright religiosity and the insults hurled at their own humanity, they leave! As mentioned above, they leave so often that a cliche, "revolving door policy," was created to describe this mass exodus.
Now, would you remain a member of an organization which treated you as a pathological liar by default...that is, until you started parroting the slogans and cliches like a good little Buchmanite and slowly inducing upon yourself a full lobotomy in the process?
That is a lie!
And A.A. and its membership had the nerve to lecture on "rigorous honesty"? And guess which "manner of living" the cult only recognizes? The 12-Steps, that's what!
Here are more heinous ad hominem attacks against those who do not tow the party line of Buchmanism as being unfortunate liars since birth and their chances of recovering from their habitual drinking without resorting to the 12-Steps as remote. Heck, some people are so full of that noxious-in-the-eyes-of-the-Buchmanites self-will that they will themselves abstinent all by themselves with nothing more than their own mind and the stubbornness to stick to that decision once and for all! To witness the Buchmanites tell the tale nobody just quits drinking once and for all without A.A. It's also as if organizations such as Rational Recovery, S.O.S. - Secular Organizations for Sobriety (Save Our Selves), Women For Sobriety, SMART Recovery, and the Internet LifeRing don't exist within the eyes of A.A. and where thousands of people (including myself) got the vital information they were looking for to stay safe, sane and completely abstinent from intoxicants. To the cult they're all just other imitation 12-Step programs because that's all A.A., much less its cult adherents, will let the newcomers know! They will never change the "divinely inspired" 164-pages of Alcoholics Anonymous, not even to reflect the reality outside of the cult! That's not a "quit drinking" program but a deeply dogmatic cult religion!
I myself was lied to within one such facility in July 2003 (Clarion Psychiatric Hospital, Clarion, PA) where there was nothing to read but children's books and A.A. propaganda. The staff lied that Rational Recovery was just another 12-Step program and wasn't as good as "The Real Thing", which in the staff's opinion was A.A. What a bunch of Bill$hit! I learned the truth in March 2004 and proceeded to uncover more lies within A.A. in the process. My website is evidence of that.
In fact, according to Professor (and Doctor of Psychiatry) George E. Vaillant of Harvard University (a Non-alcoholic - Class A - member of the Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. [AAWS] Board of Trustees) in A.A.'s organ, A.A. Grapevine (May 2001), around 60% of people recover without A.A.! That's certainly more than average! Ironically, within his book The Natural History of Alcoholism: Causes, Patterns, and Paths to Recovery, the A.A.-based treatment he prescribed and studied was worse than providing no treatment at all: More people died in and resulting from the "treatment" as opposed to no treatment or alternatives to indoctrination into Buchmanism. He described the results of his 8-year study of his alcoholism treatment program (66% still drinking, 29% dead and 5% abstinent) as "appalling"(1). I wholeheartedly agree.
I've been to my share of meetings and if there is something that is worthy of reporting is this observation: The longer one stays in A.A. the crazier and angrier that person becomes! I recovered once I realized the truth through Rational Recovery (and, in the process, realizing that I was lied to by the cultists) so I rejected A.A.'s doctrines outright because A.A.'s doctrines are clearly pro-addiction!
More accurately, I cashed in a couple of my I.Q. points and took my brain out of hock. I found that I deprogrammed myself just as victims of destructive mind control cults do! I then started writing down my observations and experiences so that no one else needs to travel down the path I did.
Now I write my own essays on my own website which I crafted and published all by myself to get the truth out. That's true independence which provides authentic freedom and happiness. It's a very liberating experience to just sit down within OpenOffice.org and AOLPRESS and just write and publish the results immediately. :-)
They leave out one thing from all all those "drunk/drugalogues" and it's the real reason why people intoxicate themselves:
"TO FEEL BETTER!"
As in, "To feel better..." than angry, sad, lonely, depressed or even better then good for that matter. Anything less than that is a deliberate evasion from that truth. Blaming their decision to drink on a mythological disease is just a whole load of pseudo-psychological Bill$hit. They drank "to feel better" and nothing more and enjoyed it thoroughly. Of course, when one is abused and find that pleasure in intoxication, no wonder they'll become addicted to it: That ineffable bliss produced by that recreational drug is infinitely much more pleasurable than a hostile environment. It's Occam's Razor deftly applied to that human need to feel pleasure instead of pain: Pleasurable things feel good while painful things feel bad. And besides, pleasure (especially immediate pleasure) feels better than pain, especially deprivation confused for pain, right now!
Until they recognize that fact, they will always refuse to acknowledge that it was themselves who put that intoxicant within their bodies. They LOVE the pleasure of intoxication and risked everything just to remain fully loaded especially after the trauma has long passed. Instead of telling the whole truth, including the deeeeeeeep pleasure they experienced, they lie through omission and blame Devil Drink/Drug and anything and everything else, including some mysterious "disease" except their own poor decision making while intoxicated when they do stupid and potentially harmful things.
Instead of taking full responsibility by declaring that they will NEVER drink/drug again and abiding by that sacred covenant for one LIFETIME at a time they pray that someone or something else will make that decision for them to rid them of their need to make such moral decisions concerning their own volitional behavior...but for a short duration such as only one day.
In smirking silence, as they piled up the Bill$hit within their drunk/drugalogues which sound more and more like bad masochistic comedy sketches, they know deep down they want to intoxicate themselves further. They haven't learned a damn thing since day one: If intoxication gives you problems then pick a perfect time as RIGHT NOW, and KNOCK IT OFF!!!
Abstinence is a skill than can be learned. Likewise, recovery is NOT a drawn out process of procrastination but a sudden and wonderful event! Unfortunately the truth, facts and knowledge to learn how to abstain once and for all are sadly absent from A.A. According to A.A. itself they never "swear off." Maybe that explains why the cult has such a horrendous failure rate.
But, you know, if you keep on doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results...and so on and so on...
Personally, all I wanted to learn was how to quit drinking and stay quit. I don't need cult religion, sponsors, Steps, Traditions, prayer, "Big Books", yelled at, chastised, sneered at and brutalized in general. I certainly didn't need to be pushed into a deep depression which nearly led me to succeed in killing myself.
The sick part is that it's an official part of A.A.'s doctrine! It's right there within the discussions of the First Step and the Third Tradition within the A.A. book Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions! And doctors recommend A.A.? How many of them have even bothered to reconcile A.A. with the ethics contained within the Hippocratic Oath and Informed Consent?
To the cultists: Whatever it is that you have I implore you cultists to keep it to yourselves within your little iatrogenic leper colony, okay? If only for the love of Vernon Koresh, William Griffith Wilson, Chuck Diedrich, The Semblers, Adolph Hitler or whatever icons whom have taken millions down that same road that you worship upon with the best of intentions, please? Just leave me out, allright, and respect my decision to independently abstain and self-recover?
No wonder so many people balked: The cultists are crazy!
That is a lie!
How about: "THEY chose to NOT find a MORE RATIONAL way!" From there they proceed to lie and dupe other people into the cult, for according to Steven Hassan nobody joins cults: They're recruited.
They thought wrong. And they'll lie their asses off in the process by repeating the A.A. slogan that the only alternatives are "jails, institutions and death". While I could take the more conciliatory route of understanding that this chapter within the first 164 pages of Alcoholics Anonymous will never be updated (that makes the content of those pages over 65 years obsolete since 1939 at the time of this writing) to reflect the reality of the outside world, the truth is the real world outside of Buchmanism progresses onward. Much more knowledge of what addiction is and isn't is available to those who are willing to look outside the box'o'lies of Buchmanism by following their own intuition.
The "easier, softer way" which Buchmanites not only deny but to actively discourage is to make the decision to quit and make that decision stick. As I mentioned earlier there are other organizations and knowledge outside of A.A. which can help. The truth is that I have been at a few meetings where newcomers were actively told to not read other authentic self-help books. The advice to the newcomer, "all you need to know is in the Big Book", is yet another lie for there is ZERO information within it concerning how to make a final commitment to independent, unconditional lifetime abstinence.
Yet how can it be a lie if the participants don't know if it's a lie? Ignorance is bliss especially when all one knows is A.A. and its "Conference Approved" propaganda. To shine light on authentic alternatives is considered in A.A. to be blasphemous behavior regarded as sickness. To state the truth, that to recover once and for all from addictive behavior doesn't even involve going to meetings, is seen as a symptom of one's malady. It's easy to lie within such ignorant bliss when you regard those with a viewpoint counter to the standards Buchmanite lies and outright denial of reality, the truth, as being hopelessly diseased in refusing to "come to believe" the lies of the cult.
There is some truth in that statement, yet that truth is misdirected. In my case it made much more sense to identify all irrational ideas which supported continued drinking. Unfortunately, as with everything which seems to possess truth within the recovery group movement, it's misdirected into yet another grotesque inversion of reality. The "old ideas", within the context of Buchmanism, are the authentic independent values, hopes, dreams and aspirations of one's own humanity. This is summed up with what A.A. calls "self-seeking", a clear symptom of one's own malady. This is emphasized through circular sloganeering, such as: "Your ideas are sick BECAUSE you are sick".
To possess independent thought to see though Buchmanism, knowing that it's something that the Buchmanites claim it's not, is considered sick, "self-seeking" disease symptomology and one must learn to "act as if" (lie) by doing everything which A.A. demands even if it grates against one's own conscience. To not do so carries forth the threat implied through the fear of death. Therefore, to not agree with the doctrine of Buchmanism is akin to "signing one's own death warrant".
What I have learned is that the biggest ideological hurdle one must leap over to overcome substance dependence is to unlearn Buchmanism. These "old ideas" which manifest addiction itself, as embodied throughout the doctrines of A.A., the recovery group movement and the addiction treatment industry, keeps the dependence alive by using that dependence as the stick to coerce the newcomer into the recovery group lifestyle of constant recruiting and publicity required to keep the movement alive. The carrot of "recovery" is effectively dashed as being yet another example of "self-seeking" in that no one truly recovers but is always recovering. One is only given a "daily reprieve" from their sickness and, in an effort to show gratitude for that day, the work of God though the activities and doctrines of Buchmanite "spirituality" must be adhered to or one will sicken and die.
That is a lie!
Alcohol is an inanimate object and therefore it is neither cunning nor baffling but depending upon its proof it can be quite powerful...but only when it's deliberately ingested!
Can alcohol defend itself when its tipped over onto the ground? Or does it just fly off the shelf or from the fridge and down the ol' gullet? Is it even possible for you to grab your keys, walk out of the house, get inside of your car, drive to the bar, enter the bar, sit down at the bar, order a drink, take the drink in hand, lift it to your mouth, tip the container to your lips forming a water-tight seal between the container and your mouth, pour the drink into your mouth and swallow then, when you're done with your drink, order more without one realizing what you are doing? The answer is NO to ALL of those circumstances.
And for people who claim they are "triggered" to drink? Actually, it's the other way around: They look for excuses to drink and do so for the vicarious yet fleeting pleasure which booze provides. When one is found out after the fact of their own intoxicated spree it's always more excuses which are created which allow one to dance around the primary motivation for placing alcohol into their own body in the first place: Alcohol makes you feel good and that's its primary effect. It is why it is called a recreational drug.
Finally, who says you need "help" to quit drinking? Why it's A.A. and its Buchmanite true believers, that's who! For them to tell the tale, someone who self-recovers will never be truly happy and will go to those usual bad places where Buchmanites, with smirking self-satisfaction, only wish for such people to go. It's the identical idea of one needing a drink so bad that it would hurt not to have it. Throw in doctors and psychiatrists who parrot the cult's party line and what you have is a gigantic self-inflicted insult to their very professions who wind up speaking the voice of addiction itself.
It's tragic to find ideas such as independence and self-effacy to be too radical to the point of outright heresy in the eyes of the cultists, apologists and "useful idiots" posing as educated experts.
I say, for those who hate the cult and are angered by its various aspects, you are not alone and have every right to be upset. You're perfectly sane. It's the therapeutic state, a socialistic prison disguised as "help", which is the madness of addiction incarnate.
I just have to paraphrase Forrest Gump: "I didn't know he was lost." Which is a great segueway into The Riddle of Epicurus:
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.
Besides, I thought this was a quit-drinking program, not a God-finding program. It definitely sounds "religious, not spiritual". Yet, with all the lies told so far, if this is what's considered noble and moral then the cult falls quite short of such notions.
A few other observations: If this God has all power and alcohol is "cunning, baffling, powerful" then doesn't that mean Alcohol is also a God? Certainly Alcohol would not have any power because God has all of it or is that a lie? If God has all power, why does Alcohol have not just power but is cunning and baffling to boot? Or, if God has all power, including the power to create and control the universe, why did He create Alcohol in the first place? Is this all God's fault? Does he get off on being a sick, sadistic and evil prick? And so forth and so on within the baffling Bill$h!t of Buchmanism...
Since A.A. will never answer those questions, A.A. can get lost, along with its "God", and go hang. Just as much as I will never place any of that poisonous liquid into my body, the same protocol applies for the philosophical poison of Buchmanism.
Yes. A.A. claims to be an abstinence program therefore the decision should be made in regards to this line of inquiry: "Will you or will you not drink again in this lifetime, considering all the problems your own choice to self-intoxicate caused you?" Ah, yes! That IS the question, the fork in the road, which comprises the true turning point! That IS the alpha and the omega, the beginning and end of all.
Unfortunately, according to A.A.'s official website, A.A. does not teach people to "swear off", as in to quit. Since they don't teach that skill then what do they offer instead? Tentative conditional "sobriety": The ULTIMATE in less-than-half measures based in procrastination, by far worse than any "half measure".
It's far easier to just make that decision at that turning point your final decision, get it over with and never have to dwell upon it again. As David Mamet said through the character of Scott within his movie "Spartan", "You can quit now. Get it over with."
That is a lie!
No. No one else is going to quit for you. It's your decision and yours alone. Not even divine intervention can "help" you. Not even God as A.A. understands it. Heck, not even A.A. for that matter because that cult will do everything to lead you astray from the goal of quitting. If you can't decide between a moral and immoral action by now then beware of false prophets who will take advantage of your blindness. Caveat Emptor.
That is a lie!
Actually, the truth is that William Griffith Wilson never worked the Steps.
He got his H.P. on with a bunch of killer drugs
from his boy, Dr. Silkworth. And "suggested"? The word is used within the
same context of, "after you jump out of the aircraft, it is suggested that
you pull the ripcord to deploy your parachute."
Look very carefully: Is there any directive to abstain from drinking within any of those Steps? In fact, the very idea of being "powerless over alcohol" is quite simply the worst advice to give someone with impulse control problems and, when one comes to believe it, makes problem drinking into a chronic addiction. Without that First Step the rest just don't have the punch of an irrational fear of a beverage which will kill them if they aren't instructed to do as they're told to do.
There's much more that can be said about how bunk the Steps are and how they are not a program to quit drinking. If it's "a new way of life" then that way is slavery. Read more about the Steps within my recent Article, "12-Step Assumptions and Fallacies" and you'll see how dangerous they are to one's own pre-cult sanity.
And, once one realizes what the Twelve Steps are and what they will NOT do, of course no one wants to go through with them: It's a religious indoctrination program which uses addiction as the whip to force the sheep into becoming guilt-ridden true believers. The people clearly in their right minds are those who immediately leave, seeing the Steps and the organization along with its rituals for exactly for what they are.
That is a lie!
The Steps are NOT principles: They're explicit practices in using addiction as fear-driven desire-based leverage within religious conversion to convert a human being into a Buchmanite. But I'll give credit where credit is due: As far as sainthood goes the true believers have nothing to worry about regarding their own compulsive lying to even achieve, much less even begin to rise towards, the lofty ahuman standards of Buchmanism.
And who draws the lines of this "spirituality"? A.A. You can be drunk as a skunk and still be a "productive" Big Book-thumping Buchmanite too, just like Morgan R.(2) Hey, you can work the Steps while completely blitzed! As long as you're "growing" by making such an effort then does that "sobriety" matter anyhow? Maybe God wanted you to be a drunken degenerate which, for the "One with all power", renders A.A. obsolete by turning it into a moebius strip of predestination.
That is a lie!
These are neither "principles" nor "guides to progress". They're practices! But practices for what? They certainly are not practices which will enable you to quit drinking, that's for sure.
Well what if we wanted to learn how to quit drinking? How many shades of progress are there between drinking and never drinking again? Is this either a quit drinking program or a guilt-inspiring cult philosophy? Certainly one's morale immediately improves once one takes care of the mother of all their character defects once and for all. In this case people who voluntarily show up in A.A. want to learn how to quit drinking!
And how good is this program? Why not track actual rates of abstinence instead of subjective items which are inherently incalculable as "spiritual progress" or happiness? Could it be that, according to A.A.'s own Triennial Survey in 1989, that only 5% of those who attend keep coming back after a year? If one were to equate abstinence with A.A. attendance that's a 95% FAILURE RATE! At Dr. Robert Holbrook Smith's memorial service, Wilson stated that he literally had to go through hundreds of alcoholics just to find a handful who stayed abstinent! No wonder the Buchmanites would rather not focus upon abstinence for the basis of a success rate because A.A. flat-out does not have a success rate.
The public at large, unfortunately misguided by the public relations strategy of the recovery group movement through the media, still believes that A.A. is a benevolent and successful self-help group which helps people quit drinking. The addiction treatment industry, the outgrowth of the recovery group movement into the financial economy of the free market, airs advertisements proclaiming that people who use drugs against their own better judgment should just "get help" instead of just knocking it off once and for all. Films portraying the inherent good which comes from "treatment" show only the dark side of substance overuse and the enlightening side of "recovery". The inebriate or junkie is nothing more than human waste until they have had "a spiritual awakening" and redeemed themselves.
Instead of seeing the truth about addiction and recovery the public prefers to ignore that the alleged "cure" of absolving one's own personal responsibility. Oh, if the public and the unenlightened supporters of this "treatment" would read its own doctrines...
That is a lie!
Don't be fooled. These three "pertinent ideas" which appear as through they're pieces of solid evidence are nothing more than wishy-washy restatements of the first three Steps. In practice within the cult itself I've seen too many people either break down, die or wind up on gurneys speaking in oxymoronic thought-terminating cliches in defense of their "recovery". I can say for a fact that this cult aggravates addiction through its own lies.
1) The Natural History of Alcoholism Revisited, George E. Vaillant, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1995, pages 349-352
2) Alcoholics Anonymous: Cult or Cure?, Charles Q. Bufe, See Sharp Press, Tucson, AZ, 1998 (Second Edition), page 45 (available online). The plight of Morgan R. is also detailed at the beginning of Chapter One, "In The Beginning", of Ken Ragge's The Real A.A.: Behind The Myth of 12-Step Recovery (1998) (available online) and in A.A.W.S.'s Pass It On (pp. 115-116).
Last updated 2005/10/18
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