A Non-God-Centered Spirituality?

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April 22, 2020

By Andy F

Categories: Spirituality

I write my first blog post with a tremendous sense of excitement. My name is Andy, and I am an alcoholic. I created this website to promote my book. It is now available on Amazon. The book is called “The Twelve Steps For Agnostics.” I do hope that it will be a valuable resource for agnostic alcoholics.

Many of us struggle with the concept of a higher power. What could a non-divine notion of this power be? The truth is that alcoholics have indeed lost the power of choice when it comes to alcohol. It has rendered them powerless to stop drinking. To recover, they will need a power greater than themselves to help them with their powerlessness.

Writing the book

Through my own experiences as an agnostic in AA, I have written The Twelve Steps for Agnostics. It’s about going through the steps successfully without believing in God or any unseen higher power. The steps have transformed my life. My agnostic-friendly sponsors taught me how to find and use practical powers greater than me. They helped me with steps two and three of AA’s twelve steps.

The greater powers I have found in AA have helped me to stop drinking. They also guided me toward a tangible spiritual awakening. It is in no way dependent on a belief in God. This journey has had dramatic and life-changing results. I suffered more than a decade of devasting relapse in AA. I am very grateful that I am approaching twenty-seven years of contented sobriety.

Defining a higher power

Today, Alcoholics Anonymous is a worldwide fellowship that embraces everyone who has a desire to stop drinking. The AA program has always been and continues to be open to personal interpretation. The emphasis is on developing a dependence upon a higher power. Every member is free to choose their own conception of a “Power greater than ourselves.” (Step two)

This higher power does not have to be God. Each alcoholic can choose a power of their understanding. All it needs to be is a positive power greater than the alcoholic. It works by accepting new ideas instead of “old ideas.” These new ideas available in AA will offer alcoholics a solution that they do not presently have.

“Some of us have tried to hold onto our “old ideas,” and the result was nil until we let go absolutely.” 

(BB p.58)

The AA group – A power greater than the individual alcoholic

For most non-believers, it is initially the power of the group. Gradually, their spirituality grows in a direction that works for them. My book is about showing newcomers that they need not be daunted by the ‘God’ word. The words ‘God’ and ‘higher power’ are mentioned in six of the 12 steps. I explain that the spiritual awakening promised in step 12 and a belief in God are not necessarily mutually inclusive. Members that do not believe in the traditional idea of a monotheistic God.

I do hope you enjoy the book.

In fellowship,

Andy F

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