Alcoholics Anonymous – Back To The Forties Class #2
Steps 2, 3, 4 and 5.
In class two we discuss steps 2 though 5. Finding a higher power, turning our will over to that power, discovering our shortcomings and beginning to get rid of them.
Welcome to Back To the 40’s – How Alcoholics Anonymous worked in the 1940’s.
During the first decade after the publication of the Big Book…
The recovery rate from alcoholism within the fellowship of AA was 75%.
AA’s program, as practiced then, was quite different from the program that is practiced today.
To produce such an astounding recovery rate, what was done in the early days of AA?
These five classes will provide an in depth look how this was done.
Discover this in depth look at: Taking the 12 steps right out of the the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous!
“To show other alcoholics precisely how we have recovered in the main purpose of this book.” (Alcoholics Anonymous, pg xiii)
That’s how it was done back in the early days and it worked.
“Here are the steps we took, which are suggested as a program of recovery.”
(Alcoholics Anonymous, pg 59)
4th step inventory worksheet available for download here
“Alcoholics Anonymous: An interpretation of our Twelve Steps”
So what happened?
In the 1950’s , with the publishing of the 12×12, groups started to change from “here are the steps we took” to here are the steps we’ll just study. There was no such thing as “step Study” prior to 1952.
A carefull reading of the Big Book shows a certain timeline for working the steps, its in the stories, Bill worked the steps with Ebby in Towns, 9 days sober.
Dr Bob met Bill several times over a course of a few weeks, got drunk in Atlanta, and then did his amends in one day.
Ernie T ( I think on page 291) describes going through the steps with Dr Bob in an afternoon.
Clarence Snyder (home brewmeister) often said “give me a willing drunk on Friday and I’ll show you a recovered alcoholic on Monday”
None of which agrees with what I hear in the rooms today.
1940’s style meetings in Cleveland, saw newcomers being taken through the steps in seminar fashion , in groups of 20-30 drunks all working the steps, recovery rates were twice as good as in NY.
They actually worked the steps in the meeting, inventory was written between meetings and step 5 was done with a sponsor after a meeting, sponsors barely had 1 month experience themselves due to the explosive growth rate which came about due to the publicity they were getting.
All 12 steps were completed in 4 meetings.
See Dr Bob and the Oldtimers for more of the same, patients would get out of the alkie ward and come back the next week describing their experience in making amends.
Thats how they used to do it, I believe it still works best, rather than the drag it out as long as possible approach.