Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their
experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common
problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for
membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for AA
membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. AA is not
allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does
not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes.
Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve
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
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.
1) Our common welfare should come first; personal
recovery depends upon AA 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 AA membership is a
desire to stop drinking.
4) Each group should be autonomous except in matters
affecting other groups or AA as a whole.
5) Each group has but one primary purpose - to carry
its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
6) An AA group ought never endorse, finance or lend
the AA name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of
money, property and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
7) Every AA 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) AA, as such, ought never be organized; but we may
create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they
10) Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside
issues; hence the AA 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.
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.