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There Is A Solution!

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RA RA's Logo There Is A Solution! The E-Newsletter of Recoveries Anonymous; The Solution Focused Twelve Step Fellowship.
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R.A.’s Eleventh TraditionRA
Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, films, television, and other public media of communication. RA
    This is the next in a series of articles about R.A.'s Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions. Even though A.A. has granted us permission to adapt the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, Recoveries Anonymous is a unique Fellowship with a distinctive way of looking at and working the Twelve Steps and the Twelve Traditions. R.A.'s experience is that, when someone thoroughly follows the pioneers' "clear-cut directions," they will duplicate the pioneers' results. They will find the same recovery that the pioneers found.RA
    R.A.'s Eleventh Tradition discusses our public relations policy. It says that it is based on attraction, not promotion. Attraction means that we let our members and our friends recommend us. We avoid making sensational claims to promote ourselves. This also means that the names and pictures of R.A. members should not be used in any way that publicly announces their connection to the program. This includes being quoted by name in print, on the radio, or on a television show. It also includes being quoted by name in any other form of communication that is distributed to the general public.RA
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LquoteR.A.'s Eleventh Tradition discusses our public relations policy. It says that it is based on attraction, not promotion.Rquote
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    It is easy to find examples of those who use "promotion" in the world around us. For example, it is promotion when a car rental company advertises that they try harder. It is "promotion" when a food company says that their product tastes best. It is promotion when one political party says that their plan is superior to the other party's plan. In R.A., we avoid promotion. We do not say that we are better or more effective than other programs or organizations. We do not publicize our program by criticizing others. RA
    In R.A., we believe that the pioneers give us many examples of "attraction." For example, they used attraction when they named their book. Its full title is, Alcoholics Anonymous: The Story of How Many Thousands of Men and Women Have Recovered from Alcoholism. The pioneers also used attraction at the start of the "Foreword to First Edition." They say, "We, of Alcoholics Anonymous, are more than one hundred men and women who have recovered from a seemingly hopeless state of mind and body. To show other alcoholics precisely how they can recover is the main purpose of this book." We can also see attraction in the pioneers' choice for the title of the second chapter of their book. It is called, "There Is A Solution." RA
    In these examples, we can easily see that the pioneers did not compare their program to any other. They did not say that their program was better than any other. They did not criticize anyone or anything. This is the difference between attraction and promotion. RA
    R.A.'s Eleventh Tradition makes another important point. It says that R.A.'s members need to maintain their "personal anonymity." It relates this to R.A.'s public relations policy. The pioneers wanted to attract newcomers to the program. However, they did not want to do this by publicizing individual members. They were afraid that a slip by a well-known person might discredit the entire program. They did not want anyone to be thought of as a public spokesperson for the fellowship.RA
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LquoteRecoveries Anonymous
is a program of attraction. We have found one of the most effective ways of attracting newcomers is for our members to share about
their recoveries.
Rquote
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    R.A. is a unique program. We have a distinct understanding of anonymity. It is stated in R.A.'s Eleventh Ideal. The Twelve Ideals are unique to R.A. The Eleventh Ideal says, "We strive, by God's grace, both as a Fellowship and as individuals, to always recognize that among ourselves, R.A. members do not need to be anonymous; therefore, we demonstrate our faith in God, and our commitment to each other, by using our full names within R.A. and at R.A. Meetings." RA
    In R.A., we call our meetings R.A. Discussions. In the suggested formats for them, we expand on this concept of anonymity. We say that we recognize that anonymity is a personal decision. Therefore, we state that each R.A. member has the right to remain as anonymous as they wish.RA
    This means that in R.A., we use the pioneers' original concept of anonymity. There is only one situation where an R.A. member should not use his or her full name.This is if they are talking about R.A. at the public level of press, radio, television, or films. At any other time, R.A. members have the option of using their full names. This includes if they are at an R.A. Discussion or if they are speaking at a public or semipublic gathering. In addition, they can tell their family and friends, as well as other R.A. members, that they are in Recoveries Anonymous.RA
    Recoveries Anonymous is a program of attraction. We have found one of the most effective ways of attracting newcomers is for our members to share about their recoveries. This is not a violation of the Eleventh Tradition. In DR. BOB and the Good Oldtimers, on page 264, in the third paragraph, Dr. Bob makes this clear. He is quoted as saying that there are two ways for someone to break this tradition. The first way is to use their full name at the level of press, or radio. The second way is by being so anonymous that no one can find them to ask for their help. RA
    This is a preview of the chapter about the Eleventh Tradition that will be in "R.A.'s Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions Revealed" which will be published in the coming year.RA
View an HTML version of R.A.'s Twelve Traditions!  Download R.A.'s Meetings Guide!
 
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Personal AnonymityRA
R.A.'s experience is that the Eleventh Tradition is one of the most misunderstood parts of the program. Most of the people who come to R.A. were in other programs. They do not know how "attraction" differs from "promotion." They do not understand the role "personal anonymity" plays in our "public relations policy."RA
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LquoteMost of the people who come
to R.A. ... do not understand the
role 'personal anonymity' plays in our 'public relations policy.'
Rquote
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    In R.A., we have found that the original long form of the Eleventh Tradition helps to clear up these misunderstandings. However, many people who come to R.A. from other programs are usually only familiar with the short form of this tradition. They are surprised to learn that there are two versions of the Eleventh Tradition. They have never heard of the long form of the Eleventh Tradition. Even those who have heard of it often do not know that it continues to be in force. It is still printed in the current Big Book and in A.A.'s 12&12. In R.A., we have found that it is important to read and understand the long form of the Eleventh Tradition.RA
    The original long form of the Eleventh Tradition was published in the April 1946 issue of A.A.'s magazine, The Grapevine. It says, "Our relations with the general public should be characterized by personal anonymity. We think A.A. ought to avoid sensational advertising. Our names and pictures as A.A. members ought not be broadcast, filmed, or publicly printed. Our public relations should be guided by the principle of attraction rather than promotion. There is never need to praise ourselves. We feel it better to let our friends recommend us."RA
    R.A. has graciously been granted permission by A.A. to adapt their Twelve Traditions. In R.A., we completely embrace the long form of the Eleventh Tradition.RA
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LquoteOur relations with
the general public should
be characterized by
personal anonymity.
Rquote
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    The Twelve Traditions were reduced to their current short form in 1947. In A.A. Comes of Age, on page 213, starting in the first paragraph, it says that they did this so that the Twelve Traditions would match the length of the Twelve Steps. This took several months of editing. The traditions were then in a form that was very close to what they are in today. The short form of the Eleventh Tradition said, "Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio and films." R.A. has updated this tradition. We include the phrase, "television, and other public media of communication." RA
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    In R.A., we have found that there is another misunderstanding. It has to do with the phrase, "a program of attraction." Many people mistakenly think that this concept originated with the Eleventh Tradition. However, this concept comes from the earliest days of the program. It took shape over a decade before the Eleventh Tradition was written. This happened when Bill Wilson, the co-founder of the program, wanted to raise money for the program. He wrote what is now "Bill's Story" and what was to become the chapter "There is a Solution." They both were originally designed to attract financial support for the fellowship.RA
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Lquote[A newcomer's] attention
should be drawn to you as a
person who has recovered. You
should be described to him as one of
a fellowship who, as a part of their
own recovery, try to help others, ...
Rquote
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    These two chapters are now in R.A.'s Multilith Big Book. They were placed there to attract newcomers and encourage them to work all Twelve Steps so that they could find the same recovery the pioneers had found. On page 8, in the first paragraph, of "There is a Solution," it says, "We, of ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS, know one hundred men who were once just as hopeless as Bill. All have recovered. They have solved the drink problem."RA
    The pioneers continue their policy of attraction. They do this in R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page 13, in the fifth paragraph. They tell us "clear-cut directions are given showing how an alcoholic may recover." One of their "clear-cut directions" tells us how to introduce ourselves to a newcomer. On page 41, in the sixth paragraph, they say, "his attention should be drawn to you as a person who has recovered. You should be described to him as one of a fellowship who, as a part of their own recovery, try to help others, and who will be glad to talk to him if he cares to see you."RA
    In R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page 53, in the sixth paragraph, the pioneers continue. They say, "We have elsewhere remarked how much better life is when lived on a spiritual plane. If God can solve the age-old riddle of alcoholism, he can solve your problems too."RA
    This is a preview of the chapter about the Eleventh Tradition that will be in "R.A.'s Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions Revealed" which will be published in the coming year.RA
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  A page from R.A.'s Journal Of Recovery.
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The Miracles Revealed:
R.A.’s Journal of Recovery
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The page to the right is from R.A.'s second book, "The Miracles Revealed: R.A.'s Journal Of Recovery." This book will give even the most experienced person a fresh look at the program. You can read it like a daily journal, or you can read it straight through. R.A.'s Journal will help everyone come to a deeper understanding of our program of recovery. If you enjoy this sample, please visit R.A.'s web site and download a copy of "The Miracles Revealed: R.A.'s Journal of Recovery."RA
A Story of RecoveryRA
Our experience is that the stories in the original Multilith Big Book were written to validate the pioneers' "clear-cut directions" for working the Twelve Steps. To help your recovery, we encourage you to visit R.A.'s web site and get "The Original Way Out Revealed: R.A.'s Annotated Multilith Big Book" and read all of these original stories. The following passage is from the story "A BUSINESS MAN'S RECOVERY." In R.A.'s Annotated Multilith Big Book, in the personal story section, on page PS32 it says:RA
RA"Would a condemned man like a reprieve? Of course I wanted to meet them. I was so scared and so desperate that I was willing to try anything. Thus it was that I met that band of life-savers, Alcoholics Anonymous.RA
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"The first thing Bill told me was that I was a hopeless alcoholic and that nothing that I could do for myself would help me to be otherwise — that the only possible way, providing I really wanted to quit, was to let a Greater Power do it for me.RA
RA"He told me his own story, which paralleled mine in most respects, and then said that for three years he had had no trouble. It was plain to see that he was a supremely happy man — that he possessed a happiness and peacefulness I had for years envied in men.RA
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LquoteIt was plain to see that he
was a supremely happy man —
that he possessed a happiness
and peacefulness I had for
years envied in men.
Rquote
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RA"What he told me made sense because I knew that everything that I, my wife, my family and my friends had tried had failed. I had always believed in God even though I was not a devout church-goer. Many times in my life I had prayed for the things I wanted God to do for me, but it had never occurred to me that He, in His Infinite Wisdom knew much better than I what I should have, and be, and do, and that if I simply turned the decision over to Him, I would be led along the right path.RA
RA"At the conclusion of our first interview, Bill suggested that I think it over and come back to see him within a few days if I was interested. Fully realizing the utter futility with which my own efforts had met in the past, and somehow or other sensing that delay might be dangerous, I was back to see him the next day.RA
RA"At first it seemed a wild, crazy idea to me, but because of the fact that everything else I had tried had failed, because everything seemed so hopeless, and because it worked with these fellows who all had been through the same hell that I had been through, I was willing, at least, to have a try.RA
RA"To my utter astonishment, when I did give their method a fair trial, it not only worked, but was so amazingly easy and simple that I said to them "Where have you been all my life?"RA
RA"That was in February 1937, and life took on an entirely different meaning. It was plain to see that my wife was radiantly happy. All of the differences that we seemed to have been having, all of the tenseness, the worry, confusion, the hectic days and nights that my drinking had poured into our life together, vanished. There was peace. There was real love. There was kindness and consideration. There was everything that goes into the fabric of a happy normal existence together.RA
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Lquote...because it worked with
these fellows who all had been through the same hell that I had been through, I was willing, at
least, to have a try.
Rquote
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RA"My employers, of course, as the writers of these stories, must remain anonymous. But I would be very thoughtless if I did not take this opportunity to acknowledge what they did for me. They kept me on, giving me chance after chance, hoping I suppose, that some day I would find the answer, although they themselves did not know what it might be. They do now, however.RA
RA"A tremendous change took place in my work, in my relationship with my employers, in my association with my co-workers and in my dealings with our customers. Crazy as the idea seemed when broached to me by these men who had found it worked, God did come right into my work when permitted, as He had come into the other activities connected with my life.RA
RA"With this sort of lubricant the wheels turned so much more smoothly that it seemed as if the whole machine operated on a much better basis than heretofore. Promotion that I had longed for previously, but hadn't deserved, was given to me. Soon another followed; more confidence, more trust, more responsibility and finally a key executive position in that same organization which so charitably kept me on in a minor position through the period of my drunkenness.RA
RA"You can't laugh that off. Come into my home and see what a happy one it is. Look into my office, it is a happy human beehive of activity. Look into any phase of my life and you will see joy and happiness, a sense of usefulness in the scheme of things, where formerly there was fear, sorrow and utter futility."
 
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A Newcomer AsksRA
Q"I've spent many years in other Twelve Step programs. In each of them, I was told that I needed to be anonymous. They said that I had to keep my last name a secret. Now, I am attending R.A. meetings. I've noticed that most of the other members introduce themselves by using their first and their last names. Isn't this against the Eleventh Tradition? Why do you do this?"RA
QIn R.A., we want the same recovery that the pioneers found. Therefore, we suggest that our members work the program as closely as possible to the way that the pioneers worked it. Many pioneers introduced themselves using their full names. That is why R.A. members have the option of introducing themselves using their first and last names. RA
RAToday, in most meetings in other Twelve Step programs, it is rare to hear members introduce themselves by using their first and last names. However, using full names continues to be encouraged by the A.A. fellowship. There is an A.A. pamphlet named "44 Questions." It was first published in 1952 and is still available. On page 37, in the middle of the page, it says that their members are not anonymous within their fellowship, at their meetings, or with each other.RA
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LquoteMany pioneers introduced themselves using their full names. That is why R.A. members have the option of introducing themselves using their first and last names.Rquote
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RAExperience has shown that the practice of anonymity in other programs has sometimes been carried to extremes. Bill Wilson's wife was Lois. Her biography is called Lois Remembers. On page 144, in the top paragraph, she shares what happened when Bill was a guest speaker at a meeting in Little Rock, Arkansas. She says that the leader of the group was so intent on protecting his anonymity that he shared from behind a curtain. He did not want the twelve hundred people attending the meeting to know who he was. She says that Bill spoke from the open stage. RA
RAR.A.'s Eleventh Tradition says, "Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, films, television, and other public media of communication." RA
RAPlease note that this tradition is clear. It specifically says where we need to be anonymous. It states that anonymity is only required at the "level of press, radio, films, television, and other public media of communication." RA
RADr. Bob's biography discusses anonymity at length. In DR. BOB and the Good Oldtimers, on page 264, in the second paragraph, it quotes Warren, an early A.A. member. Warren says that all the pioneers knew each other. They spent most of their time together. He says it was not just the program; it was also their social life. Newcomers stayed in their homes. The group had all the members' names, addresses, and phone numbers. He quotes Dr. Bob as saying that, if he just introduced himself as Dr. Bob S., those who wanted his help would not be able to find him. RA
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LquoteWithin R.A., no one has to
use their full name if they do not
want to. They can maintain whatever level of anonymity they are
comfortable using.
Rquote
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RAIn the third paragraph, on page 264, Warren continues. He shares that Dr. Bob said someone could break the Eleventh Tradition in two ways. First, by using his or her full name in the press or on the radio. Second, by being so anonymous that the people who need their help cannot find them. RA
RAThe Twelve Ideals are unique to Recoveries Anonymous. R.A.'s Eleventh Ideal says, "We strive, by God's grace, both as a Fellowship and as individuals, to always recognize that among ourselves, R.A. members do not need to be anonymous; therefore, we demonstrate our faith in God, and our commitment to each other, by using our full names within R.A. and at R.A. Meetings." RA
RAPlease note that R.A.'s Eleventh Ideal is not designed to force anyone to do something they do not want to do. Within R.A., no one has to use their full name if they do not want to. They can maintain whatever level of anonymity they are comfortable using. R.A.'s Eleventh Ideal is simply intended to protect the rights of those R.A. members who want to duplicate the way that the pioneers worked their program. RA
    This is a preview of the chapter about the Eleventh Tradition that will be in "R.A.'s Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions Revealed" which will be published in the coming year.
 
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R.A.’s “How To Begin…” GuidesRA
To find out more about our Twelve Step Fellowship, and how you can get started working the Twelve Steps of our Solution Focused Program of Recovery, we suggest that you visit our web site and Download R.A.'s "How To Begin…" guides. This includes R.A.'s Newcomer Guide, "How To Begin Living In The Solution."

R.A.’s Solution Focused BooksRA
Move up to the next step in your search for recovery by downloading and reading the PDF versions of R.A.'s Solution Focused Books. We do not charge for the PDF versions of our books. Instead, we give the passwords needed to open our books to thank those who support our efforts to help others. You can show your support by making a small, one time, tax-free contribution to R.A., or, if you truly cannot afford to make a contribution at this time, by filling out our Feedback Form. RA
    If you are reading this, you have probably spent a lot of time and energy trying things that did not work out the way you hoped they would. Doesn't it make sense to invest a little more time and energy in this time-proven method of finding the recovery you've been seeking? As the pioneers promise in the Multilith Big Book: ''It works—it really does. Try it.''

R.A. Is Self-supportingRA
If R.A. has helped you, please consider making a contribution in support of our efforts to help others.

Recoveries AnonymousRA
For more information about our Twelve Step Program Of Recovery visit our web site at www.R-A.org

 
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