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Within Buchmanism, Ethical "Traditions" Are Optional

When it comes down to ethical conduct by the Buchmanites, it is safe to say that their Twelve Traditions are nothing more than contradictory window dressing to appear as though there are solid ethical principles that the cult abides by. Proof of that is through your own eyes and the long form of A.A.'s Traditions (Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, pp. 189 - 192, emphasis added where appropriate).

For example, Tradition Eight is always undercut by anonymous Buchmanites receiving compensation within the addiction treatment industry as paid professional counselors and by these same facilities only considering "recovering addicts/Alcoholics" (read as Buchmanites) for that very job:

Eight--Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional. We define professionalism as the occupation of counseling alcoholics for fees or hire. But we may employ employ alcoholics alcoholics where they are going to perform these services for which we might otherwise have to engage nonalcoholics. Such services may be well recompensed. But our usual A.A. Twelfth Step work is never to be paid for.

Tradition Twelve, likewise, is the shield in which the violations of full disclosure and informed consent concerning such "stealth" members within addiction "treatment". Which brings up an interesting Catch-22: The "counselor" can't disclose their affiliation with the cult or they'll break Tradition Twelve. Likewise, since the "counselor" is getting paid for their service while as a member of the cult, they're secretly breaking Tradition Eight:

Twelve--And finally we of Alcoholics Anonymous believe that the principle of anonyminity has an immense spiritual significance. It reminds us that we are to place principles before personalities; that we are to practice a genuine humility. This to the end that our great blessings may never spoil us; that we shall forever live in thankful contemplation of Him who presides over us all.

To translate from Buchmanese back to English, these practices should come before people! But, despite its proclamation of anonyminity, it doesn't speak of specifically why anonyminity is "spiritual".

(Maybe because if high-profile A.A. members were found binge drinking, like "asylum inmate Morgan" who gave a "stirring three minutes" for an A.A. radio campaign during A.A.'s infancy...then went immediately back to the bottle, then it would prove of A.A.'s horrendous failure rate? And if more people knew of how many of these closeted cultists infiltrated our social services system they would see clearly why their Byzantine "treatment" never worked!)

It's an outrage, I'm sure! But guess what? With the "counselor" it's either A.A. or "jails, institutions or death". According to Tradition One, the cult enforces its will over the "counselor": A.A. always comes first. To do less is to invite death via drinking to not just him/herself but also to the other cultists "in recovery". So don't ask any questions or you'll kill somebody:

One--Each member of Alcoholics Anonymous is but a small part of a great whole. A.A. must continue to live or most of us will surely die. Hence our common welfare comes first. But individual welfare follows close afterward.

Isn't that awful! How can such "counselors" get away with that? And those Traditions are very contradicting! Won't A.A. do something about the abuses which occur?

Why of course! A.A. does exactly one thing: NOTHING! They even have a Tradition for that as well: Tradition Nine which not only defines the organization of the A.A. organization but also what oversight it provides:

Nine--Each A.A. group needs the least possible organization. Rotating leadership is the best. The small group may elect its secretary, the large group its rotating committee, and the groups of a large metropolitan area their central or intergroup committee, which often employs a full-time secretary. The trustees of the General Service Board are, in effect, our A.A. General Service Committee. They are the custodians of our A.A. Tradition and the receivers of voluntary A.A. contributions by which we maintain our A.A. General Service Office at New York. They are authorized by the groups to handle our overall public relations and they guarantee the integrity of our principal newspaper, the A.A. Grapevine. All such representatives are to be guided in the spirit of service, for true leaders in A.A. are but trusted and experienced servants of the whole. They derive no real authority from their titles; they do not govern. Universal respect is the key to their usefulness.

In essence it's Traditional to NOT follow the Traditions since there is no one to govern how the Traditions are to be enforced by A.A.! Neat trick, eh?

So, remember all you Buchmanites-in-training: Unethical conduct within A.A. is not just awful: It's Traditional!


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Last updated 2005/03/15

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