Member: Mark W.
Location: In the shadow of the giant croquet wicket
Date: 26 Jan 2003
Time: 09:46:33

Comments

Hmmmmmmmmmmmm...... Common welfare, AA Unity..... Sounds like getting along is of great importance. The AA program has given me many tools that help me in the quest to get along better in this life. As my personal recovery depends on AA unity, I think I will do my part to ensure that AA remains for those behind me. Others were there waiting for me to come to the AA program after all. Yours in service, Mark W. LMW007@aol.com


Member: Gage
Location: La
Date: 26 Jan 2003
Time: 11:47:15

Comments

I'm Gage and I am an alcoholic. I am an alcoholic, but I am a lot of other things as well. In AA, it doesn't matter what else I am. I know this guy who feels so adament about this that he will go to ANY "special interest" AA group and just dare them to tell him he can't stay. He worries that special interest AA groups are going to destroy AA unity as a whole. He may be right. I don't worry about it. I don't worry about it. If something like that were to happen, then, my friend above, Mark W, and I will just get us a coffee pot and a Big Book, and AA will keep on trucking. (I'll bring the resentment, Mark. LOL)


Member: Landscape Ray
Location: Scotland
Date: 26 Jan 2003
Time: 15:51:11

Comments

The first tradition is a reminder that the group i belong to is only a small part in the whole picture and that is why i go to meets an make sure my home group stays open for the still suffering alkie and in doing this my recovery goes on aswell. Regards Ray


Member: History
Location: Lover in FL
Date: 27 Jan 2003
Time: 00:03:52

Comments

Grapevine, December 1947 Tradition One Our whole AA program is securely founded on the principle of humility -- that is to say, perspective. Which implies, among other things, that we relate ourselves rightly to God and to our fellows; that we each see ourselves as we really are -- "a small part of a great whole." Seeing our fellows thus, we shall enjoy group harmony. That is why AA Tradition can confidently state, "Our common welfare comes first." "Does this mean," some will ask, "that in AA the individual doesn't count too much? Is he to be swallowed up, dominated by the group?" No, it doesn't seem to work out that way. Perhaps there is no society on earth more solicitous of personal welfare, more careful to grant the individual the greatest possible liberty of belief and action. Alcoholics Anonymous has not "musts." Few AA groups impose penalties on anyone for nonconformity. We do suggest, but we don't discipline. Instead, compliance or noncompliance with any principle of AA is a matter for the conscience of the individual; he is the judge of his own conduct. Those words of old time, "judge not," we observe most literally. "But," some of us argue, "if AA has no authority to govern its individual members or groups, how shall it ever be sure that the common welfare does come first? How is it possible to be governed without a government? If everyone can do as he pleases, how can you have aught but anarchy?" The answer seems to be that we AAs cannot really do as we please, though there is no constituted human authority to restrain us. Actually, our common welfare is protected by powerful safeguards. The moment any action seriously threatens the common welfare, group opinion mobilizes to remind us; our conscience begins to complain. If one persists, he may become so disturbed as to get drunk; alcohol gives him a beating. Group opinion shows him that he is off the beam, his own conscience tells him that he is dead wrong, and, if he goes too far, Barleycorn brings him real conviction. So it is we learn that in matters deeply affecting the group as a whole, "our common welfare comes first." Rebellion ceases and cooperation begins because it must; we have disciplined ourselves. Eventually, of course, we cooperate because we really wish to; we see that without AA there can be little lasting recovery for anyone. We gladly set aside personal ambitions whenever these might harm AA. We humbly confess that we are but "a small part of a great whole." Reprinted with permission of The AA Grapevine, Inc


Member: H.
Location: Florida
Date: 27 Jan 2003
Time: 03:51:42

Comments

Whew! This tradition is a wonderful thing to hear for those of us newcomers who have yet to reach steps 2/3, and who are still using the AA rooms/groups as our 'temporary HP'!


Member: AnilG
Location: MtVernon,IL
Date: 27 Jan 2003
Time: 09:29:50

Comments

I am an alcoholic. tradition one reminds me of the basis of aa. this organization is all centered on us as one and then as a group. It revolves around our recovery. for me to make me a better person that has helped me to cope with my life and all the problems that I was running way makes it easiar becouse it has given me the tools to work with. Thanks to aa and al anon.


Member: Craig L (Dogmanor@yahoo.com)
Location: Aloha, Oregon
Date: 27 Jan 2003
Time: 12:57:54

Comments

I have some guilt around this tradition. If I am rigorously honest; I still hold resentment around my first home group. Regardless of the validation I hear from others who have tried this group, AA has taught me that resentment is still mine to heal, by confronting that aspect in my ego, which causes fear. My job with Ńcommon welfareń is simple, practice humility and ensure the doors of AA remain open for those who still suffer.


Member: Wayne.W
Location: Englehart,Ont.
Date: 27 Jan 2003
Time: 20:53:48

Comments


Member: Wayne W.
Location: Englehart,Ont.
Date: 27 Jan 2003
Time: 21:28:24

Comments

Hello,I"m the new "Guy",the one that sent his name without a brief story.I will be honest with you all,this is my first time using the computor. This is not my first time in A.A.I went 22 months 26 days. Dec.16/02 I fell off my horse for one day. I've climbed back on,working the a.a.program from the beginning once more,I'm in the middle of "STEP 1" I know that I'm powerless over alcohal, that my life is unmanageable. That is why a power greater than myself,has too guide and lead me in the direction I need too go in. I didn't talk a lot, of a step or tradition,thats it for tonight I'll be back later. tt i i i E i a


Member: Jack B
Location: Palo Alto, Pa
Date: 28 Jan 2003
Time: 02:22:33

Comments

Hi, I am Jack, a real alcoholic. For me Tradition One is best put in pamphlet Twelve Traditions Illustrated. Our individual sobriety depends on the group. The group depends on us. We soon lear that unless we curb our individual desires and ambitions, we can damage the group. Thanks for allowing me to share and God Bless.


Member: Adam H.
Location: Chicago, IL USA
Date: 28 Jan 2003
Time: 02:23:35

Comments

Adam, alcoholic. This Tradition reminds me that I need to stay close to AA not only for my sobriety, but also for the new person coming in to AA seeking help. I still need the guidance and power of AA just as much as I needed AA six and a half years ago when I first started coming here. However, I have been taught that one of the most important hings I can do for my sobriety is to really try to carry out what it says in that responsibility statement: "When anyone anywhere reaches out for help, I want the hand of AA to be there, and let it begin with me." I can do that by simply showing up and sharing my experience, strength and hope at a meeting, or by going on a twelve step call at a hospital or someone's home. However, if I do not show up for AA, not only am I depriving myself of the gift of maintaining my sobriety, but I am taking away from AA some additional help in carrying out it's primary purpose of carrying the message to the still suffering alcoholic. Because I have stayed close to AA for the last six and a half years, not only is AA still there for me when I need it, but I am also there for AA when they need me to help carry the message. Grateful to be a sober member of this fellowship.


Member: Pat H.
Location: Labrador Straits, Labrador, Canada
Date: 28 Jan 2003
Time: 07:25:38

Comments

Pat H. Alcoholic. Remember the triangle. Unity, Service & Recovery & a balance with all three. One cannot work wihtout the other.


Member: AZbill
Location: Sierra Vista, Arizona
Date: 28 Jan 2003
Time: 13:23:15

Comments

Hi, Bill here. Alcoholic from Arizona. Our common welfare. What a wonderful tradition. What this means to me is that I should be able to attend any AA meeting anywhere in the world and get some relief from my alcoholism. I do have problems other than alcoholism. Bill W. wrote extensively on problems other than alcohol. I was taught almost from the beginning that.."Our stories disclose in a general way..." Specifics do not belong at an AA meeting . We deal with specifics one on one with someone qualified to deal with them. Sponsors, Docs, Shrinks, Welfare, whatever. The key to understanding our three Legacies is that they are all intertwined. The Steps are what keeps the individual healthy. The Traditions are what keeps the AA groups healthy and the Concepts are what keeps AA as a whole healthy. Bill az-bill@mindspring.com


Member: dutch
Location:
Date: 28 Jan 2003
Time: 18:35:56

Comments


Member: dutch
Location: so. Il
Date: 28 Jan 2003
Time: 18:38:06

Comments

thank you all for sharing with me Ilove what this blessed prog. has done for me as well as you all. just could not close without sharing my grat. for you family!


Member: Marv L
Location: Laurel,Ms
Date: 28 Jan 2003
Time: 23:58:54

Comments

Im Marv L,grateful recovering alcoholic. "Our common welfare"covers both what AA unity provides each of us as individuals,and what members can give to the fellowship..thank goodness there wasnt bickering or jealousy about property,pride or prestige in the group that provided haven for me when I knocked on the AA door! I owe my life to those who had changed by working the AA program,and could point me to a way of life I could live sober!!!! I love what I read about a great thinker whose view about AA was that it works because members who have "Joined the pack of the wounded,and having found it was a lifesaving choice,each was later only glad to help those coming later, who could not handle lifes problems alone" Nature tells us a lot about the instincts animals have of forming packs or flocks,in order to survive. Sure has saved my butt many a time to stick with the winners!! And,in AA the founders avoided a lot of conflict by clearly making each individual feel they are an important part of the whole! Someone said "The scenery only changes for the lead dogs on a sled team,LOL,we dont have that problem in AA,because there arent any "lead dogs" ! We are ALL sober one day at a time,and as we read in every meeting,"WE are NOT Saints"and no words can really tell how grateful I am to be a part of AA,and to live sober today..Love ya ALL!!


Member: My Mothers Daughter
Location: A.A.
Date: 29 Jan 2003
Time: 09:29:55

Comments

When I attend meetings and hear foul language flying easily off the tongue of members, new members AND old-timers, I am deeply concerned about our "common welfare". There are MANY suffering alcoholics who would be so offended that they'd never come back,people like my own mother. These are people whose welfare in A.A. is drastically compromised. And for what??? IS it an appropriate representation of our fellowship to fly in the face of just basic consideration of others. I dare say that the people who curse and use crude language would not do so in situations where it would jeopardize THEIR welfare (eg. with the judge or the boss) Needless to say I am angered when this unnecessary and rude sort of behavior is condoned and when it , in my opinion ,compromises our COMMON welfare. Alcoholism can and does strike the June Cleaver and Mother Theresa And Pastor Harry types. I have never heard a foul word that was actually necessary to the point being expressed ,anyway, so why on earth would we even take the chance of causing certain people to feel out of place among us. Hey, there are pretty cool four letter words to get aquainted with, like care and life and safe and love. Please encourage people to ask themselves if it is in any way necessary. PLEASE don't give me that garbage about if a person wants sobriety badly enough then theyll just put up with it. Drunk I had to endure no respect or consideration. Is that what recovery should look like, too?? I sure hope not. Thanks.


Member: MALVIN T
Location: ORLANDO FL
Date: 29 Jan 2003
Time: 10:01:22

Comments

HI GOOD LUCK FOR ALL OF U TRYING TO STOP DRINKING


Member: Melanie
Location: No School in Ohio,USA
Date: 29 Jan 2003
Time: 16:02:46

Comments

Hi All, I'm Melanie, an alcoholic. AA 3rd ed. p. 565: "Our A.A. experience has taught us that: 1.--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." So, the only thing that comes before individual welfare is the common welfare, Right? So, as long as someone isn't damaging AA as a whole, we should be concerned with each person's welfare. That welfare could be defined as their health and sobriety. It seems to me that this tradition means that foremost we must not damage AA. In addition, we must not cause harm to one another. The individual is an important part of the whole, the whole is what keeps us alive. Love and help one another. Thanks for helping me.


Member: Bonnie 5/30/80
Location: God's loving hands
Date: 30 Jan 2003
Time: 01:56:12

Comments

Hi extended family, bonnie/alcoholic here, (((ROOM-HUG))) dear hearts, Ahhh my first lesson in AA, 1st meeting, a priest in full dress, was crying and sharing, it was the first time his pain had surfaced in his life and his words were "My f---ing father raped me. his four letter words did not chase me out the door, it was the honesty of the pain that made me stay. i could relate. and i thought i WAS June Cleaver. if their strong language is in their sharing about their life, thank God they are sharing their pain. this is not church. this is a safe place to share your pain. If their strong language is against members of the group, they should be asked to take it outside to respect the group. ((mothers daughter)) So take your mom to church or get her into a religous based treatment center. but ya know, when you wanna get sober, you will go to any lengths. i could blame bad coffee on not going back to meetings if i wanted to drink. without your group unity, you have a scary place for shaky newcomers to experience and if your group is falling apart, find another meeting or find a friend and ask other groups (in your area or on the web) how they keep unity. and try new stuff with your friend for your group. pot lucks, big book studys, 12 & 12 studies. go to your business meeting and talk about your concerns. enuf from me, Dear God please bless all who venture here, love and hugs, bon


Member: Bonnie 5/30/80
Location: God's loving hands
Date: 30 Jan 2003
Time: 01:56:34

Comments

Hi extended family, bonnie/alcoholic here, (((ROOM-HUG))) dear hearts, Ahhh my first lesson in AA, 1st meeting, a priest in full dress, was crying and sharing, it was the first time his pain had surfaced in his life and his words were "My f---ing father raped me. his four letter words did not chase me out the door, it was the honesty of the pain that made me stay. i could relate. and i thought i WAS June Cleaver. if their strong language is in their sharing about their life, thank God they are sharing their pain. this is not church. this is a safe place to share your pain. If their strong language is against members of the group, they should be asked to take it outside to respect the group. ((mothers daughter)) So take your mom to church or get her into a religous based treatment center. but ya know, when you wanna get sober, you will go to any lengths. i could blame bad coffee on not going back to meetings if i wanted to drink. without your group unity, you have a scary place for shaky newcomers to experience and if your group is falling apart, find another meeting or find a friend and ask other groups (in your area or on the web) how they keep unity. and try new stuff with your friend for your group. pot lucks, big book studys, 12 & 12 studies. go to your business meeting and talk about your concerns. enuf from me, Dear God please bless all who venture here, love and hugs, bon


Member: Rhonda N.
Location: Dallas, TX
Date: 30 Jan 2003
Time: 12:50:43

Comments

Hi, my name is Rhonda and I'm a grateful alcoholic. I decided a while back that I can make my group as sick as I want to. I have tried to follow the example of those members of the group who practice AA principles in and out of meetings. I was also blessed with a sponsor who doesn't really get into gossip or politics. Recently, a woman in our group 'got it'. After months of seeing her come in and fill in the squares of her court paper, I noticed one day that she was just lit up all over. She said that she no longer felt like an outsider. She had surrendered to the group, become a part of it instead of an observer. That's definitely how it has to be for me. If I start picking out individuals for their differences, the group will no longer be my safe haven. I can do my part, too, to make those people feel welcome. Peace and happiness, Rhonda.


Member: Terry S.
Location: Ohio
Date: 31 Jan 2003
Time: 10:19:53

Comments

Terry-Alcoholic. This is my first time to this site. Good topic. When I came in the rooms I had turned from a fake June Cleaver into someone I did not know. Morally bankrupt. I appreciated the honesty in the rooms. I could listen to real people not just someone who was trying to be someone for appearance sake. I heard you tell of your experience,strength and hope. I kept coming back. I was able to share in words that might have offended some but I was accepted for where I was at the time. It was were I was suppose to be. Maybe my language is getting a little better and I try to accept others in the room because it is how it is modeled for me. I thank my higher power for AA.


Member: mmd
Location: aa
Date: 31 Jan 2003
Time: 20:29:44

Comments

One priest ,in agony, saying the "F" word is touching. A room full of people freely peppering their talk with the "F" word is thoughtless and SELFISH and not at all the same as bad coffee. One can choose not to drink the coffee. "Selfishness, self-centeredness, that was the root of all of our problems.......we had to be rid of this selfishness.....or it would kill us." see pg 62 Big Book I don't understand why striving for the ideal of being thoughtful is a problem.. Progress not perfection.


Member: mmd
Location: aa
Date: 31 Jan 2003
Time: 20:32:40

Comments

Terry S. ...Keep coming back!!!! Thank you for sharing and a little better means the world. Thanks


Member: Jan
Location:
Date: 01 Feb 2003
Time: 03:31:10

Comments

Jan, alcohlic. (MMD) When I first came into AA, I went to a clubhouse meeting in which a man shared how angry he was with "some f---ing b--ch with a master's degree" and how by being angry with her, he had given her all his power, and it fairly radiated off him that no woman should own his power. At first I was very scared and upset, being a woman with a master's degree myself. I mean, I tightened up and pretty much didn't listen to the rest of the meeting, I felt so attacked. But later, whenever I felt myself retreating because someone said or did something that rolled over me, I heard that voice. It wasn't nice or pleasant, but it was important to me in retrospect. So I guess this relates to the topic in that sometimes even the seemingly negative expressions of one of us enhances the sobriety of all (or at least some) of us.


Member: Joy S.
Location: Chas. SC
Date: 01 Feb 2003
Time: 09:09:15

Comments

Just my two cents- if I let all the things others have done and said in and out of the rooms get to me, I would not be sober today. I am busy fixing my own life and trying to offer the positive that I have to give. Getting sober is a life or death business and with that said, cussing hardly seems to be that big of a deal, at least from my point of view. Granted it may not be polite, but at least whoever it is is in the rooms. Many become frustrated in the face of thier powerlessness and addiction and that seems like an ok time to let a few expletives fly. You're supposed to be able to "get down" with your family. It's the only place where you can come and say I stole from someone, was arrested, whatever it is and they say keep coming back! WE,US- those words for me don't come with the option that it will be my way-THANK GOD! Pain has no particular language nor custom, but it feels about the same to everyone-MISERABLE. One of the things I respect most about AA is that ALL are welcome and that OUR recovery comes first.I like Jan's last line and will keep it in mind. Thank You all.


Member: Harold A.
Location: New England coast
Date: 01 Feb 2003
Time: 21:19:48

Comments

Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. unity. This is one of those strange things that is easier to do than to talk about... Meanwhile, my name's Harold and I'm an alcoholic and my stinking thinking is hitting me upside the head pretty good today. Planning to hit a meeting in the morning and pray it will help. Miracles abounding in my life meanwhile, despite all my thoughts. Thanks to all who come to this site to help and to be helped. You've helped me many times.


Member: Marv L
Location: Laurel,Ms
Date: 01 Feb 2003
Time: 23:52:10

Comments

Hi,Marv L, alcoholic,wanting to say what I"ve read HERE this week has helped me so much!You"ve helped me value more highly OUR COMMON WELFARE.In a few hours,a new topic will begin,and recovering people will contribute to it... I will remember this weeks sharing and be more appreciative of AAs unity..like Harold said,its so much easier said than done!In my sober time,Ive seen thoughtless things said and done,(and yes,have done them,too)and made and drank a lot of bad coffee at AA meetings,but all along the way,just as Ive read in this weeks topic,Ive seen that "what at first appeared to be a flimsy reed turned out to be the loving hand of GOd" Recovery is a matter of life and death for us,and knowing that. how could I NOT try to do my part? Thanks,everybody!!


Member: Terry S
Location: Minneapolis
Date: 02 Feb 2003
Time: 00:02:05

Comments

Hi, my name is Terry and I'm an alcoholic. This is my first time to this site and I want to thank those who have shared before me for their thought provoking contributions. When I think of the good of AA as a whole, I know that if it is good for AA, it is good for me. I know that AA will get along great without me, but will I get along great without AA? Years of drinking and drugging showed I would not. I have been guilty of letting a few cuss words fly out of my mouth both in and out of meetings and haven't really considered the damage I might be doing someone else. This is a program of growth and I thank you for helping me look at this issue. I am never offended when people cuss - I'm really offended by other things but I'm not there to judge, I'm there to try to stay sober another day. God Bless every alcoholic, perfect and imperfect!