The Twelve Steps
The Twelve Steps were invented by a man (with the help of his doctor) who believed at one point he was a hopeless addict. His symptom addiction was alcohol, but his “spiritual path to recovery” has been adapted to dozens, and perhaps scores, or different addictions. His Twelve Steps have save millions from “death, insanity or prison.”
Bill W’s story is told in the AA Big Book. Below is his ingenious solution to his own problem, and, perhaps, yours or someone you know.
We admitted we were helpless over the problem — that our lives have become unmanageable.
We came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
We made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as we understood God.
We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
We admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being, the exact nature of our wrongs.
We were entirely ready to have God remove those defects of character.
We humbly asked God to remove our shortcomings.
We made a list of all persons we have harmed, and became willing to make amends to all of them.
We made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.
We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it.
We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood God, praying only for knowledge of God’s will for us and the power to carry that out.
Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to other addicts, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.