Living the Twelve Traditions in Today's World

Living the Twelve Traditions in Today's World

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A gripping exploration of the history of the Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous and their relevance and applicability today.

Today, almost everywhere you turn, celebrity misadventures with alcohol and drug use, overdoses, and relapses are splashed across the headlines. Popular starlets are "doing time" in rehab for theft and misconduct. Yesterday's heroes congregate before the camera for a Twelve Step meeting or a therapy session. Although this state of media attention has made the public increasingly aware of the dangers of drinking and drugging, what does this mean for Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and similar Twelve Step programs that were founded on such Traditions as anonymity and not drawing the AA name into public controversy?

In Living the Twelve Traditions in Today's World, seasoned writer and AA historian Mel B. uses transcripts of speeches by Bill W. and original documents chronicling the development of the Twelve Traditions to examine their importance to the survival, integrity, and success of AA and other 12-Step organizations. Popular speaker and archivist Mike F. then looks at the relevance of each of the Traditions in the twenty-first century--their importance for recovering people's ongoing sobriety and for the future of the Fellowship.

Together, Mel B. and Mike F. explore what aspects of the Traditions hold strong and what have been overlooked or have even evolved since they were formally adopted at the First International AA Convention in 1950. In the end, they find strength and hope in a radical organizational model and culture born from a lasting concept: principles over personalities.

Mel B. is a long time AA member and the author of many classic recovery titles, including My Search for Bill W., Walk in Dry Places, New Wine: The Spiritual Roots of the Twelve Step Miracle, and Ebby: The Man Who Sponsored Bill W.

Mike Fitzpatrick is one of the leading archivists and historians specializing in the development of the Twelve Step movement. He has worked with authors and movie producers, providing material for their work, and is the coauthor of 1,000 Years of Sobriety.