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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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Introducing R.A.’s Twelve StepsRA
ASimple Religious Idea and a Practical Program of Action. 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
    We have been previewing chapters from R.A.'s upcoming new book, R.A.'s Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions Revealed. It seemed to make sense to start with the chapter detailing R.A.'s understanding of the First Step. However, that meant we did not preview the chapter "Introducing R.A.'s Twelve Steps." We are now correcting that omission.RA
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    The evolution of the Twelve Steps started with a meeting between Bill Wilson and Ebby Thacher. Ebby was an old friend of Bill's. Bill was amazed that his long time drinking buddy was sober. Bill asked Ebby what happened. Ebby shared how, a few months earlier he had found himself in court about to be "committed for alcoholic insanity." RA
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LquoteThe evolution of the
Twelve Steps started with a meeting between Bill Wilson
and Ebby Thacher.
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    In R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page 4, starting in the bottom paragraph, talking about Ebby, Bill says, "In a matter of fact way he told how two men had appeared in court, persuading the judge to suspend his commitment. They had told of a simple religious idea and a practical program of action. That was two months ago and the result was self-evident. It worked!"RA
    Ebby explained that the two men were members of the Oxford Groups. This was a spiritual movement of the time that was open to anyone, with any problem, or behavior. It also welcomed those just seeking spiritual growth. In R.A., we think it is important to emphasize that these two men told Ebby that their program consisted of two main parts. The first was "a simple religious idea." The second was a "practical program of action."RA
    During his visit with Bill, Ebby "talked for hours." In R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page 5, in the fifth paragraph, Bill recounts this conversation. Bill says that Ebby described the "simple religious idea" as "a God personal to me, who was love, superhuman strength and direction..." In the eighth paragraph, Bill goes on to tell how Ebby, "made the point-blank declaration that God had done for him what he could not do for himself."RA
    Finally, as the result of his conversation with Ebby, in R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page 6, in the second paragraph, Bill writes, "Thus was I convinced that God is concerned with us humans, when we want Him enough. At long last I saw, I felt, I believed. Scales of pride and prejudice fell from my eyes. A new world came into view."RA
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Lquote...their program consisted of two
main parts. The first was 'a simple
religious idea.' The second was a
'practical program of action.'
Rquote
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    In R.A., we have found that this "simple religious idea" is the foundation that the "practical program of action" rests upon. Over time, the "practical program of action" has evolved. It is now called the Twelve Step program of recovery. In R.A., we have found that it is very difficult to work the Twelve Steps without understanding this "simple religious idea." We have found that while someone does not need to initially accept this concept, they will need to be at least willing to experiment with it.RA
    Bill does not go into great detail about the "practical program of action" in his story in R.A.'s Multilith Big Book. Instead, we need to look elsewhere for more details of Bill's meeting with Ebby. RA
    In A.A. Comes of Age, Bill describes his conversation with Ebby in greater detail. On page 58, starting in the bottom paragraph, Bill recounts what Ebby told him about the "practical program of action" he was told about in the Oxford Groups. Ebby says, "I learned that I had to admit I was licked; I learned that I ought to take stock of myself and confess my defects to another person in confidence; I learned that I needed to make restitution for the harm I had done others. I was told that I ought to practice the kind of giving that has no price tag on it, the giving of yourself to somebody." Ebby then goes on to say to Bill, "I know you are going to gag on this, but they taught me that I should try to pray to whatever God I thought there was for the power to carry out these simple precepts. And if I did not believe there was any God, then I had better try the experiment of praying to whatever God there might be."RA
    In R.A., we think it is easy to see all the current Twelve Steps in this "practical program of action." Over the next four years, "these simple precepts" evolved into what the pioneers called, "the word-of-mouth program." This is what the pioneers would share with newcomers. RA
    This is a preview of the chapter "Introducing the Twelve Steps" 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 Steps!  Download R.A.'s Meetings Guide!
 
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Working the Twelve StepsRA
In R.A., our experience has been that, in other programs, many things about the Twelve Steps are misunderstood. For example, people in other programs often think that the Twelve Steps are the directions for working the program. They are not! The pioneers of the program wrote the Twelve Steps to sum up what happened after they had followed the actual directions for working the Twelve Steps that are in the Multilith Big Book.RA
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LquoteTo show other alcoholics precisely how they can recover is the main purpose
of this [Big Book].
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    In R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page S, is the "Foreword to the First Edition." In the first paragraph, the pioneers 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. For them, we think these pages will prove so convincing that no further authentication will be necessary. We hope this account of our experiences will help everyone to better understand the alcoholic. Many do not yet comprehend that he is a very sick person. And besides, we are sure that our new way of living has its advantages for all." In the current Big Book, this passage has been updated. It says, "To show other alcoholics precisely how we have recovered is the main purpose of this book." The pioneers share several points in this paragraph. Each of them is often ignored or misunderstood in other programs. The pioneers start by saying they "have recovered.RA
    The pioneers then go on to tell us more about the Twelve Steps. They say that the Twelve Steps are not the result of their theories, dreams, or wishes. Instead, the Twelve Steps, and the directions in the Multilith Big Book, are based upon the pioneers' years of experience. Those things that the pioneers tried, but that did not work or did not have to be done by all the pioneers, were left out.RA
    In addition, the pioneers say their "new way of living has its advantages for all." They make a point of telling us that their program is not only for alcoholics.RA
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LquoteThere is a group of
personal narratives. Then clear-cut directions are given showing how an alcoholic may recover.
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    Another misunderstanding in other programs is that the Big Book is a storybook. Some believe that it was designed so newcomers could identify with the pioneers' problems. This is not accurate. In R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page 13, in the fifth paragraph, the pioneers describe the actual design of the Big Book. They say, "There is a group of personal narratives. Then clear-cut directions are given showing how an alcoholic may recover. These are followed by more than a score of personal experiences." In the current Big Book, this passage says, "Further on, clear-cut directions are given showing how we recovered."RA
    The pioneers are telling us how they designed the Multilith Big Book. They say that it starts off with several stories. These stories were designed to help newcomers identify with the spiritual solution that the pioneers had found. They are "The Doctor's Opinion," and "Bill's Story." "Bill's Story" also includes details of Ebby's story. These are followed by shorter stories that are within the text of the Big Book. They tell the experiences of Roland, Jim, Fred, and Fitz—the minister's son. There are also stories about several others who are unnamed.RA
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LquoteRarely have we seen
a person fail who has thoroughly followed
our directions.
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    Then, the pioneers say that the Multilith Big Book contains their "clear-cut directions." These show how a newcomer may recover. This is followed by still more stories. These validated the pioneers' experience, course of action, and recovery.RA
    The pioneers were confident. They believed that the same program that had produced their recovery would also work for others. Therefore, in R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page 26, the first sentence on the page says, "Rarely have we seen a person fail who has thoroughly followed our directions." In the current Big Book, this passage says, "...thoroughly followed our path."RA
    This is a preview of the chapter "Introducing the Twelve Steps" 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 "ACE FULL—SEVEN— ELEVEN." In R.A.'s Annotated Multilith Big Book, in the personal story section, on page PS64 it says:
"'What you need is a definite religious experience,' he said.
"'That's the bunk.' I said. 'I knew there was some angle like this. Count me out. If I've got to turn around and join a church and sing hymns and holler "Amen" when some long bearded jasper, who spends six days out of the week skinning suckers, legally begins to pray in meeting, I don't want any part of it.'
Lquote‘What you need is a
definite religious experience,’ he said. ‘That's the bunk.’
I said. ‘I knew there was some angle like this.’
Rquote
"'You don't have to do that,' he said. 'And, anyway, the long bearded slicker is no concern of yours. Your problem is yourself.'
"My friend was new to this job of helping the other fellow, but I couldn't get away from the fact that he was now sober and that he had got that way and was being kept that way by a religious experience. He made me a proposition.
"'I'll come for you Wednesday night,' he said. 'I'll take you to where a bunch of guys who used to be pickled practically all the time meet every week. You can see and listen and judge for yourself.'
"With my friend I attended that meeting. I was cordially received. I knew a good many of them and listened attentively, but I say quite honestly it left me cold. Not that it was like a church service. No, it wasn't like that at all. When some stories had been told it ended up with the Lord's Prayer, then everybody sat around and visited. I was beginning to get a little scared. Now, I thought, is when they'll put the works to a guy; along about this time one of these mugs is going to get me in a corner and ask me about my soul.
Lquote...as long as I try to walk as He has laid down for me to do throughout my life, nothing of ill can befall me...Rquote
"Nothing of the sort happened. They invited me back again. Others asked if they could come to see me, when I'd be in and so forth. My pal stuck pretty close to me that week. Some of the gang turned up at my home and told me how they had been helped to quit drinking. I went back to the next meeting and the next and the next again. Gradually I began to see what it was all about. I listened carefully for I was now definitely interested. More or less unconsciously I was seeking for something. I didn't know it then, but I think I was surely seeking God. Now, I didn't find God suddenly. You must remember that God was never in any of my plans. The former cynical, gambler slicker who didn't even believe much that there was honor among thieves, gradually learned that Love is the law of God. I, who had strictly followed the injunction that you should never give a sucker an even break, had to learn that God demands we be honest if we are to follow his teachings.
"I am writing this in the Thanksgiving season. It is a great privilege to have the fine human friendship and association of this gang of former drunks. It is an even greater privilege when I can be of service in helping some guy to a remedy which is his for the taking.
"But if friends and fellowship were to disappear tomorrow I don't think I would be dismayed. Back of all that there is the knowledge that I have a Divine Father—that as long as I try to walk as He has laid down for me to do throughout my life, nothing of ill can befall me, that if I wish I can be sober for the rest of my days."
 
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A Newcomer AsksRA
Q"When I was in another program, I was told not to worry about the Twelve Steps. I was told that I just needed to focus on stopping my behavior. I was told that I first had to have a clear mind so I could understand the Twelve Steps. This did not work for me. Now I'm in R.A., and my new sponsor says that R.A. believes it is unreasonable to expect someone to be able to stop what he or she is doing before they have fully worked the Twelve Steps. Is this truly part of R.A.'s program? "RA
QThis concept is at the center of R.A.'s program of recovery. The Twelve Ideals are unique to Recoveries Anonymous. They are detailed in "R.A.'s Declaration of Ideals for both the fellowship and the individual." A copy is included at the back of most of R.A.'s Solution Focused Literature. R.A.'s Fourth Ideal says, "We strive, by God's grace, both as a Fellowship and as individuals, to always recognize that the restoration of sanity comes as the result of working all Twelve Steps of the program; therefore, it is unrealistic for us to expect someone to behave sanely and normally, before they have implemented the entire program of recovery as detailed in R.A.'s Suggested Literature." RA
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Lquoteit is unrealistic for us to
expect someone to behave sanely and normally, before they have implemented the entire program
of recovery as detailed in
R.A.'s Suggested Literature.
Rquote
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RAIt may seem to make sense for someone to stop their behavior so that they can have a clear mind before they start to work the Twelve Steps. However, in R.A. we believe that if someone could just stop when they want to, or when they are told to, they would not need a Twelve Step program. If someone could stop when they want to, why would they ever need to take the First Step? How could they then admit that they are powerless? RA
RA In R.A.'s Multilith Big Book on page 20, in the fifth paragraph, the pioneers tell us, "Lack of power, that was our dilemma. We had to find a power by which we could live, and it had to be A Power Greater Than Ourselves. Obviously. But where and how were we to find this Power?" In the next paragraph, they go on to say, "Well, that's exactly what this book is about. Its main object is to enable you to find a Power greater than yourself, which will solve your problem." RA
RA Notice that the pioneers do not say that the Big Book's main object is to enable someone to control their behavior or solve their own problems. The pioneers tell us that the Big Book contains their "clear-cut directions" for working the Twelve Steps. When we follow their directions, we come into conscious contact with a loving Creator. He will do for us all those things that we can't do for ourselves. We have a new relationship with a Higher Power who will restore us to sanity in every area of our lives. RA
    This is a preview of the chapter "Introducing the Twelve Steps" 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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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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