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How it Works Page 2
The Twelve Steps
(Each step below is a link to the explanation of
that step from "The Twelve
admitted we were powerless over alcohol - that our lives had become unmanageable.
to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we
a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our
entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.
asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends
to them all.
Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do
so would injure them or others.
Continued to take personal inventory and when we
were wrong promptly admitted it.
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.
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
Many of us exclaimed, "What an order! I can't go through with it."
Do not be discouraged. No one among us has been able to maintain anything
like perfect adherence to these principles. We are not saints. The point
is, that we are willing to grow along spiritual lines. The principles
we have set down are guides to progress. We claim spiritual progress rather
than spiritual perfection.
Our description of the alcoholic, the chapter to the agnostic, and our
personal adventure before and after make clear three pertinent ideas:
(a) That we were alcoholic and could not manage our own lives.
(b) That probably no human power could have relieved our alcoholism.
(c) That God could and would if He were sought.
Being convinced, we were at Step Three, which is that we decided to turn
our will and our life over to God as we understood Him. Just what do we
mean by that, and just what do we do? (next)
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Steps | The Twelve
Traditions | The Promises
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