First you have to get them under your skin. I am writing a series of articles to help you do this. How To Think talks about how the way of thinking that Dr. Bob and Bill W. used to write our AA Literature involved ways of thinking critically that have been sanitized from our education system, and that, we would have to learn those ways of thinking if we were to want to really know how to think about about the Traditions and even the Steps, to a certain extent. I give you ways to use the types of critical thinking skills that they knew, as well as a way to begin finding out why we know longer learn that way, if you want to go down that “rabbit hole”. How to think about the traditions, is just a simple life example of how to think about a situation in life through the traditions that shows how they can be applied and helpful to any situation that involves 2 or more people. The following essays on how to think about each tradition are culled from my experience working with my sponsor – over 52 years sober, past Trustee on the General Service Board, and still, at age 86, active in his region, over the past 9 years. Along with other people he has introduced me to, who embody the Traditions – most of whom are people who have served as Delegates in General Service.
How to think about Tradition 1
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It took me 6 years to get them well enough to be able to take a group through them and to help that group learn to develop a group conscience using them. One does need to have finished the 12 steps first, because without that, you will still be too self-centered to be able to consider putting the Common Welfare first.
I recommend reading AA Comes of Age Three Legacies Chapters with others as a group. Also the 1953 Tradition pamphlet. The Traditions Sieve is simply a letter that my sponsor helped me write to the General Service Office regarding Manditory Reporting as AA service workers taking meetings into the Department of Corrections. A friend of mine and I read the letter outloud on her back porch and had a spiritual experience in which we realized how to take a problem through the Traditions, as if they were like a sieve, or a birds nest.
Also, in order not to make the same mistakes of the past, familiarizing yourself with Natural Law, and why our service structure has failed. We really don’t need it anymore now that we can print our own books since we lost our copyright – or buy from Anonymous Press. Bernard Smith’s Talk on AA from AA Comes of Age, p. 276 helps a lot in showing us how AA used to be. The Jack Alexander Article also…