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#SLAA Online Group

of Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous
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Readings/Literature:

Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous neither endorses nor recommends other organizations; their references are only to provide individuals with the opportunity to learn about other Twelve Step, Twelve Tradition recovery groups dealing with addiction to sex, love and relationships.   The Twelve Steps and the Twelve Traditions are reprinted and adapted with permission of Alcoholics Anonymous World Services. Inc.  Permission to reprint and adapt the Twelve Steps does not mean that AA is affiliated with this program.

Non-Conference Approved Literature Statement
The Conference understands that some patterns of our addiction have a lack of experience reflected within our literature.  In an effort to fill this gap, we encourage members to submit their personal experience to the Journal and the [Conference Literature Committee] CLitC for sharing with the entire Fellowship.  While each group is autonomous, the Conference does not encourage the use of non-Conference-Approved literature (outside literature does not include S.L.A.A. literature in draft form).  If any group chooses to use non-Conference-Approved literature, it ought to be clearly defined as such.  We do encourage the practice of our 12 Steps and 12 Traditions for all members and groups in recovery from our addiction.  Vehicles for distribution will include the bulk mailing, F.W.S. Newsletter, the Journal, etc. 
The excerpts from the book, Alcoholics Anonymous are reprinted with permission of Alcoholics Anonymous World Services, Inc. (AAWS).  Permission to reprint these excerpts does not mean that A.A.W.S. has reviewed or approved the contents of this website, or that A.A.W.S. necessarily agrees with the views expressed herein.  A.A. is a program of recovery from alcoholism only — use of these excerpts in connection with programs and activities which are patterned after A.A., but which address other problems, or in any other non-A.A.-context, does not imply otherwise.

SLAA Fellowship Wide Services distributes the book Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous (our “Basic Text”) and numerous pamphlets which are the only S.L.A.A. Conference approved literature at this time.  They also distribute a Pocket Tool Kit, a bi-monthly Journal which is a “meeting in print,” “The First Ten Years of the Journal”(in three volumes), a quarterly newsletter, an annual World Directory of meetings, and a Conference Service Manual.  All of these items may be purchased directly from S.L.A.A. Fellowship Wide Services.

In addition to the following short readings, please check out the “Recovery Books” link to the left, as well as the other links on this site.

S.L.A.A. Preamble
S.L.A.A. Twelve Steps
S.L.A.A. Twelve Traditions
A.A. Twelve Steps
A.A. Twelve Traditions
Characteristics of Sex and Love Addiction (a partial list)
Signs of Recovery
Top Lines Comment
Twelve Steps of a Sponsor
The Promises (from A.A.)
The Promises (from S.L.A.A.)
The Promises (from a Florida SLAA group)
The Rewards
The Serenity Prayer
The 3rd Step Prayer
The 7th Step Prayer
The 11th Step Prayer (Prayer of St. Francis)
Desiderata
A Daily Reprieve
A Vision For You
Acceptance

S.L.A.A. Preamble ©2003 S.L.A.A.

©1985, 2003 The Augustine Fellowship, Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous, Fellowship-Wide Services, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous is a Twelve Step, Twelve Tradition oriented fellowship based on the model pioneered by Alcoholics Anonymous. The only qualification for S.L.A.A. membership is a desire to stop living out a pattern of sex and love addiction. S.L.A.A. is supported entirely through the contributions of its membership and is free to all who need it.
To counter the destructive consequences of sex and love addiction, we draw on five major resources:

1. Sobriety. Our willingness to stop acting out in our own personal bottom-line addictive behavior on a daily basis.
2. Sponsorship / Meetings. Our capacity to reach out for the supportive fellowship within S.L.A.A.
3. Steps. Our practice of the Twelve Step program of recovery to achieve sexual and emotional sobriety.
4. Service. Our giving back to the S.L.A.A. community what we continue to freely receive.
5. Spirituality. Our developing a relationship with a Power greater than ourselves which can guide and sustain us in recovery.

As a fellowship, S.L.A.A. is not affiliated with any other organizations, movements, or causes, either religious or secular.
We are, however, united in a common focus: dealing with our addictive sexual and emotional behavior. We find a common denominator in our obsessive/compulsive patterns which renders any personal differences of sexual or gender orientation irrelevant.
We need protect with special care the anonymity of every S.L.A.A. member. Additionally we try to avoid drawing undue attention to S.L.A.A. as a whole from the public media..

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S.L.A.A. Twelve Steps ©1985 S.L.A.A.

  1. We admitted we were powerless over sex and love addiction — that our lives had become unmanageable.
  2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
  3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood God.
  4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
  5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
  7. Humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings.
  8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
  9. Made direct amends to such people whenever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. Continued to take personal inventory, and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
  11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with a Power greater than ourselves, praying only for knowledge of God’s will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to sex and love addicts, and to practice these principles in all areas of our lives.
REPRINTED FOR ADAPTATION BY PERMISSION OF A.A. WORLD SERVICES, INC.
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S.L.A.A. Twelve Traditions ©1985 S.L.A.A.

  1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon S.L.A.A. unity.
  2. For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority — a loving God as this Power may be expressed through our group conscience.  Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
  3. The only requirement for S.L.A.A. membership is the desire to stop living out a pattern of sex and love addiction.  Any two or more persons gathered together for mutual aid in recovering from sex and love addiction may call themselves an S.L.A.A. group, provided that as a group they have no other affiliation.
  4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or S.L.A.A. as a whole.
  5. Each group has but one primary purpose — to carry its message to the sex and love addict who still suffers.
  6. An S.L.A.A. group or S.L.A.A. as a whole ought never to endorse, finance, or lend the S.L.A.A. name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property, or prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
  7. Every S.L.A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
  8. S.L.A.A. should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
  9. S.L.A.A. as such ought never to be organized, but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
  10. S.L.A.A. has no opinion on outside issues, hence the S.L.A.A. name ought never to be drawn into public controversy.
  11. Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, TV, film, and other public media.  We need guard with special care the anonymity of all fellow S.L.A.A. members.
  12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.
REPRINTED FOR ADAPTATION BY PERMISSION OF A.A. WORLD SERVICES, INC.
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A.A. Twelve Steps ©1939 Alcoholics Anonymous  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

  1. We admitted we were powerless over alcohol — that our lives had become unmanageable.
  2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
  3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.
  4. Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
  5. Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
  6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
  7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
  8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.
  9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
  10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
  11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
  12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to alcoholics, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.
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A.A. Twelve Traditions ©1955 Alcoholics Anonymous  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

  1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. unity.
  2. For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority—a loving God as he may express Himself in our group conscience.  Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.
  3. The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.
  4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups of A.A. as a whole.
  5. Each group has but one primary purpose--to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
  6. An A.A. group ought never endorse, finance or lend the A.A. name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
  7. Every A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
  8. Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.
  9. A.A., as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
  10. Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.
  11. 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.
  12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.
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Characteristics of Sex and Love Addiction (a partial list)

  1. Having few healthy boundaries, we become sexually involved with and/or emotionally attached to people without knowing them.
  2. Fearing abandonment and loneliness, we stay in and return to painful, destructive relationships, concealing our dependency needs from ourselves and others, growing more isolated and alienated from friends and loved ones, ourselves, and God.
  3. Fearing emotional and/or sexual deprivation, we compulsively pursue and involve ourselves in one relationship after another, sometimes having more than one sexual or emotional liaison at a time.
  4. We confuse love with neediness, physical and sexual attraction, pity and/or the need to rescue or being rescued.
  5. We feel empty and incomplete when we are alone.  Even though we fear intimacy and commitment, we continually search for relationships and sexual contacts.
  6. We sexualize stress, guilt, loneliness, anger, shame, fear and envy.  We use sex or emotional dependence as substitutes for nurturing, care, and support.
  7. We use sex and emotional involvement to manipulate and control others.
  8. We become immobilized or seriously distracted by romantic or sexual obsessions or fantasies.
  9. We avoid responsibility for ourselves by attaching ourselves to people who are emotionally unavailable.
  10. We stay enslaved to emotional dependency, romantic intrigue, or compulsive sexual activities.
  11. To avoid feeling vulnerable, we may retreat from all intimate involvement, mistaking sexual and emotional anorexia for recovery.
  12. We assign magical qualities to others. We idealize and pursue them, then blame them for not fulfilling our fantasies and expectations.
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Signs of Recovery

  1. We seek to develop a daily relationship with a Higher Power, knowing that we are not alone in our efforts to heal ourselves from our addiction.
  2. We are willing to be vulnerable because the capacity to trust has been restored to us by our faith in a Higher Power.
  3. We surrender, one day at a time, our whole life strategy of, and our obsession with, the pursuit of romantic and sexual intrigue and emotional dependency.
  4. We learn to avoid situations that may put us at risk physically, morally, psychologically or spiritually.
  5. We learn to accept and love ourselves, to take responsibility for our own lives, and to take care of our own needs before involving ourselves with others.
  6. We become willing to ask for help, allowing ourselves to be vulnerable and learning to trust and accept others.
  7. We allow ourselves to work through the pain of our low self-esteem and our fears of abandonment and responsibility.  We learn to feel comfortable in solitude.
  8. We begin to accept our imperfections and mistakes as part of being human, healing our shame and perfectionism while working on our character defects.
  9. We begin to substitute honest for self-destructive ways of expressing emotions and feelings.
  10. We become honest in expressing who we are, developing true intimacy in our relationships with ourselves and others.
  11. We learn to value sex as a by-product of sharing, commitment, trust and cooperation in a partnership.
  12. We are restored to sanity, on a daily basis, by participating in the process of recovery.
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Top Lines Comment ©1986 S.L.A.A. p. 270  (reprinted with permission, as registered group #10525021, by the Augustine Fellowship, Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous, Fellowship Wide Services, Inc.)

In maintaining my sobriety, I find it more useful to keep in mind what I call my top line rather than my bottom line. My top line is what I do want for myself, my program goals.

I want to integrate myself physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually; to relate to others from a state of wholeness; to live making decisions from a place of freedom and clarity rather than compulsion and confusion; to feel sufficiently safe to stay open enough to find the little realities of life moving, rather than needing to get dropped off a cliff to get a thrill. I want to be present, see things the way they are, and be glad to be alive. These things are beginning to happen for me.

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Twelve Steps of a Sponsor  (Anonymous)

  1. I will not help you stay and wallow in limbo.
  2. I will help you to grow, to become more productive, by your definition.
  3. I will help you become more autonomous, more loving of yourself, more excited, less sensitive, more free to continue becoming the authority for your own living.
  4. I cannot give you dreams or “fix you up,” simply because I cannot.
  5. I cannot give you growth, or grow for you.  You must grow yourself, by facing reality, grim as it may be at times.
  6. I cannot take away your loneliness or pain.
  7. I cannot sense your world for you, evaluate your goals for you, or tell you what is best for you in your world, for you have your own world.
  8. I cannot convince you of the crucial choice of choosing the scary uncertainty of growing, over the safe misery of not growing.
  9. I want to be with you and know you as a rich and growing friend; yet I cannot get close to you when YOU choose not to GROW.
  10. When I begin to care for you out of pity, when I begin to lose trust in you, then I am toxic and bad, inhibiting for you, and you for me.
  11. You MUST know — my helping is conditional; I will be with you, I will hang in there with you, as long as I continue to get even the slightest hints that you are willing and still trying to GROW.
  12. If you can accept all of this, then perhaps we can help each other to become what HP meant us to be — mature adults — leaving childishness forever to the little children.
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The Promises ©1939 Alcoholics Anonymous pp. 83-84  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

If we are painstaking about this phase of our development, we will be amazed before we are half way through.
We are going to know a new freedom and a new happiness.
We will not regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it.
We will comprehend the word serenity and we will know peace.
No matter how far down the scale we have gone, we will see how our experience can benefit others.
That feeling of uselessness and self-pity will disappear.
We will lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in our fellows.
Self-seeking will slip away.
Our whole attitude and outlook upon life will change.
Fear of people and of economic insecurity will leave us.
We will intuitively know how to handle situations which used to baffle us.
We will suddenly realize that God is doing for us what we could not do for ourselves.
Are these extravagant promises?
We think not.
They are being fulfilled among us —
Sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly.
They will always materialize
If we work for them.

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The Promises ©1986 S.L.A.A. pp. 95-96  (reprinted with permission, as registered group #10525021, by the Augustine Fellowship, Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous, Fellowship Wide Services, Inc.)

Now we were truly feeling some sense of deep release from the past!  We were free of much guilt for our misdeeds, from the shame of having fallen short of our inner values.  In many instances, the values we had thought were ours had turned out to be someone else’s.  We had shed or changed these to allow the seeds of our own personal wholeness to take root and grow.

We were indeed living new, positive, unfolding lives.  Whether in partnership with others or in solitude, we had truly been granted a spiritual release from our sex and love addiction.  While vigilance was still important, the choices we had to make now seemed easier.  We felt increasing confidence in our developing partnership with God, and were full participants in the fellowship of S.L.A.A.  We enjoyed solitude and were unafraid of honesty and openness with others.  We could comprehend what it means to have dignity of self.

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The Promises  (drafted by the Daytona, Florida, SLAA Group)

If you have decided to follow the suggestions in this program, a new life will begin to unfold within you.  Along with this new life are promises that will guide and sustain you.  They are manifested among us in sobriety, sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly.  These are the promises we in SLAA have found:

  1. We will regain control of our lives.
  2. We will begin to feel dignity and respect for ourselves.
  3. The loneliness will subside and we will begin to enjoy being alone.
  4. We will no longer be plagued by an unceasing sense of longing.
  5. In the company of family and friends, we will be with them in body and mind.
  6. We will pursue interests and activities that we desire for ourselves.
  7. Love will be a committed, thoughtful decision rather than a feeling by which we are overwhelmed.
  8. We will love and accept ourselves.
  9. We will relate to others from a state of wholeness.
  10. We will extend ourselves for the purpose of nurturing our own or another's spiritual growth.
  11. We will make peace with our past and make amends to those we have hurt.
  12. We will be thankful for what has been given us, what has been taken away, and what has been left behind.
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The Rewards

  1. Hope instead of desperation.
  2. Faith instead of despair.
  3. Courage instead of fear.
  4. Peace of mind instead of confusion.
  5. Self respect instead of self contempt.
  6. Self confidence instead of helplessness.
  7. The respect of others instead of pity and contempt.
  8. A clean conscience instead of a sense of guilt.
  9. Real friendship instead of loneliness.
  10. A clean pattern of life instead of a purposeless existence.
  11. The love and understanding of our families instead of their doubts and fears.
  12. The Freedom of a happy life instead of the bondage of a sexual obsession.
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The Serenity Prayer

God, grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time,
enjoying one moment at a time,
accepting hardship as a pathway to peace;
taking, as God did, this sinful world as it is,
not as I would have it;
trusting that You will make all things right
if I surrender to Your will;
so that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with You
forever in the next.
Amen.
   — Reinhold Niebuhr

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The 3rd Step Prayer ©Alcoholics Anonymous p. 63  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

At Step Three, many of us said to our Maker, as we understood Him:
God, I offer myself to Thee, to build with me and to do with me as Thou wilt.
Relieve me of the bondage of self, that I may better do Thy will.
Take away my difficulties, that victory over them may bear witness to those I would help of Thy Power, Thy Love, and Thy Way of life.
May I do Thy will always!
We thought well before taking this Step, making sure we were ready. Then we could commence to abandon ourselves utterly to Him.

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The 7th Step Prayer ©Alcoholics Anonymous pp. 75-76  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

This passage immediately follows after the steps 1 through 5 have been explained
Carefully reading the first five proposals we ask if we have omitted anything, for we are building an arch through which we shall walk a free man at last. Is our work solid so far? Are the stones properly in place? Have we skimped on the cement put into the foundation? Have we tried to make mortar without sand?
If we can answer to our satisfaction, we then look at Step Six. We have emphasized willingness as being indispensable. Are we now ready to let God remove from us all the things which we have admitted are objectionable? Can He now take them all - every one? If we still cling to something we will not let go, we ask God to help us be willing.
When ready, we say something like this:
My Creator,
I am willing that You should have all of me, good and bad.
I pray that You now remove from me every single defect of character which stands in the way of my usefulness to You and my fellows.
Grant me strength as I go out from here to do your bidding.
We have then completed Step Seven.

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The 11th Step Prayer (Prayer of St. Francis) ©Alcoholics Anonymous Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions p. 99  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

Lord, make me a channel of Thy peace —
that where there is hatred, I may bring love —
that where there is wrong, I may bring the spirit of forgiveness —
that where there is discord, I may bring harmony —
that where there is error, I may bring truth —
that where there is doubt, I may bring faith —
that where there is despair, I may bring hope —
that where there are shadows, I may bring light —
that where there is sadness, I may bring joy.
God, grant that I may seek rather to comfort, than to be comforted —
to understand, than to be understood —
to love, than to be loved.
For it is by self-forgetting that one finds.
It is by forgiving that one is forgiven.
It is by dying that one awakens to Eternal Life.
Amen

Prayer of St. Francis (another version)

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.
Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console.
To be understood as to understand.
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned.
It is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

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Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence.  As far as possible, without surrender, be on good terms with all persons.  Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and ignorant; they too have their story.   Avoid loud and aggressive persons; they are vexations to the spirit.   If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter, for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.  Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.  Keep interested in your own career, however humble, it's a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.  Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery.  But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism.  Be yourself.  Especially do not feign affection.   Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantement, it is as perrenial as the grass.  Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.  Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.  But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.  Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.  Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.  You are a child of the universe no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.  And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be.  And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul.  With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.  Be cheerful.  Strive to be happy.
  — © Max Ehrmann, 1927

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A Daily Reprieve ©Alcoholics Anonymous p. 85  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

It is easy to let up on the spiritual program of action and rest on our laurels. We are headed for trouble if we do, for alcohol is a subtle foe. We are not cured of alcoholism. What we really have is a daily reprieve contingent on the maintenance of our spiritual condition. Every day is a day when we must carry the vision of God’s will into all of our activities. “How can I best serve Thee — Thy will (not mine) be done.”  These are thoughts which must go with us constantly. We can exercise our will power along this line all we wish. It is the proper use of the will.

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A Vision For You ©Alcoholics Anonymous p. 164  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

Our book is meant to be suggestive only.  We realize we know only a little.  God will constantly disclose more to you and to us.  Ask Him in your morning meditation what you can do each day for the man who is still sick.  The answers will come, if your own house is in order.  But obviously you cannot transmit something you haven't got.   See to it that your relationship with Him is right, and great events will come to pass for you and countless others.  This is the Great Fact for us.

Abandon yourself to God as you understand God.  Admit your faults to Him and to your fellows.  Clear away the wreckage of your past.   Give freely of what you find and join us.  We shall be with you in the Fellowship of the Spirit, and you will surely meet some of us as you trudge the Road of Happy Destiny.

May God bless you and keep you — until then.

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Acceptance ©Alcoholics Anonymous p. 449 (p. 417 in 4th edition)  Reprinted with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today.  When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing or situation — some fact of my life — unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.

Nothing, absolutely nothing happens in God's world by mistake.  Until I could accept my alcoholism, I could not stay sober; unless I accept life completely on life's terms, I cannot be happy.  I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes.

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