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(The New York Times)   Increasingly, A.A. is becoming A.A.A., so you can recover from alcoholism without becoming religious   (nytimes.com) divider line 343
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10257 clicks; posted to Main » on 23 Feb 2014 at 11:03 AM (39 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-02-23 02:49:32 AM  
And so you can get your car towed for free?
 
2014-02-23 06:02:16 AM  
i lol'd very amusing
 
2014-02-23 08:39:53 AM  
A guy I worked with years ago in the restaurant biz had an interesting situation concerning a DUI and court ordered AA meetings.  He is a staunch Atheist...kind of an asshole about it really.  Anyhoo, like 15 years ago he gets popped with a DUI in bumfark rural Michigan, So Dakota...somewhere over there and the Judge sentenced him with something like 50 AA meetings, some community service, etc.  Rather than get like 30 days jail, the court went that way because the local county jail was full.

He sued because the Judge/State required him to (his opinion, not mine) attend religious based meetings as punishment for his DUI, he claimed it was a violation of his 1st amendment rights (freedom to NOT practice a religion).  He also contended that because of the fact that there were no secular/non-religious 12 step programs within a reasonable distance from his work/home the Judge should drop the 12 step requirement all together.

Long story short, he won, and he would tell every person he encountered this story.  I must have heard either bits and pieces or the story in its entirety at lest 10 times.
 
2014-02-23 08:48:21 AM  
Those guys have a better track record than the Agnostic Alcoholics. You're free to change if you want, but nobody is really sure it's for the best.
 
2014-02-23 09:43:18 AM  
AAA is for minor league drunks.
 
2014-02-23 10:25:10 AM  

Endive Wombat: A guy I worked with years ago in the restaurant biz had an interesting situation concerning a DUI and court ordered AA meetings.  He is a staunch Atheist...kind of an asshole about it really.  Anyhoo, like 15 years ago he gets popped with a DUI in bumfark rural Michigan, So Dakota...somewhere over there and the Judge sentenced him with something like 50 AA meetings, some community service, etc.  Rather than get like 30 days jail, the court went that way because the local county jail was full.

He sued because the Judge/State required him to (his opinion, not mine) attend religious based meetings as punishment for his DUI, he claimed it was a violation of his 1st amendment rights (freedom to NOT practice a religion).  He also contended that because of the fact that there were no secular/non-religious 12 step programs within a reasonable distance from his work/home the Judge should drop the 12 step requirement all together.

Long story short, he won, and he would tell every person he encountered this story.  I must have heard either bits and pieces or the story in its entirety at lest 10 times.


He may be an asshole, but he wasn't exactly wrong.  They don't like to admit it (they call it spiritual) but AA is absolutely religious.
 
2014-02-23 10:26:12 AM  
I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.
 
2014-02-23 10:33:34 AM  
And if you're not a professional and you drive there you can join AAAAA, plus talk about Yellow Pages placement!
 
2014-02-23 10:55:59 AM  

Endive Wombat: court ordered AA meetings

...

...are total bullsh*t.

If you don't want to be at an AA meeting, you shouldn't be there.

Many AA... chapters, or whatever they call them, refuse to accept court ordered people for exactly that reason, and I think they are right to.

Now granted, I would take that sentence over 30 days in jail in a heartbeat, but still...
 
2014-02-23 10:59:21 AM  

nekom: They don't like to admit it (they call it spiritual) but AA is absolutely religious.


Yep.  Agreed.  I am speaking as someone whose AA "homegroup" is an atheist AA group where we don't talk about God or Jeebus or any of that shiat.  We talk about our struggles with alcohol abuse, and support one another in our efforts to live healthier, more productive lives than we did when we were stumbling around drunk all the time.

They say "the only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking."  This is sort of true, but I've had more than one sponsor that told me, after I started "working the steps," that I also needed to start worshiping a diety as well.

As the book 12 Steps and 12 Traditions puts it, when people work through the steps:

We could predict that the doubter who still claimed that he hadn't got the "spiritual angle," and who still considered his well-loved A.A. group the higher power, would presently love God and call Him by name.  --page 109

Not religious my ass.
 
2014-02-23 11:00:39 AM  

Calmamity: If you don't want to be at an AA meeting, you shouldn't be there.


I always offer to sign people's court papers before the meeting even starts in case they don't want to be there.  I think it's silly and pointless to go if you don't want to.
 
2014-02-23 11:10:19 AM  

nekom: I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.


hahahahaha. The real joke is that AA absolutely does NOT work and enjoys approx. the same success rate as quitting cold turkey.
 
2014-02-23 11:10:41 AM  
didn't we do this dance last week?
 
2014-02-23 11:11:18 AM  
I think the importance of the religion is a group to group thing.  Some emphasize it more than others.  I know my dad's group kind of calmed some members tits who got all preachy.
 
2014-02-23 11:14:46 AM  
Is this another thread where we hear that AA cannot be criticized because it's voluntary, it helped someone, and it's not religious because reasons and don't tell you about the numerous mentions of God?

Who wants popcorn?
 
2014-02-23 11:15:50 AM  

bigbobowski: didn't we do this dance last every week?

 
2014-02-23 11:16:48 AM  

FirstNationalBastard: AAA is for minor league drunks.


I am building a shrine to you at this very moment.
 
2014-02-23 11:17:13 AM  
Another AA hate thread.  I go to AA.  I don't believe in god and it still works for me.  Imagine that.
 
2014-02-23 11:17:35 AM  

drewogatory: nekom: I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.

hahahahaha. The real joke is that AA absolutely does NOT work and enjoys approx. the same success rate as quitting cold turkey.


What studies are you looking at?
 
2014-02-23 11:18:05 AM  
There is, at least in Chicago (not sure about outside of there), AAAA, which is Alcoholics Anonymous for Atheists and Agnostics. Nice people and very relaxed, I must say.
 
2014-02-23 11:19:12 AM  

drewogatory: nekom: I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.

hahahahaha. The real joke is that AA absolutely does NOT work and enjoys approx. the same success rate as quitting cold turkey.


That's because you didn't Work the steps properly. *rolls eyes*
 
2014-02-23 11:21:05 AM  
Their problem is that they make quitting out to be much harder than it is. Goes for alot of things, rule number 1#: don't make things out to be more than they are.

most people don't need AA, they need a hobby shop. If you're poor, learn to code it's free and highly addicting. Open source community is filled with people who are far more interesting than you'll find in any bar or church

Running is free and addicting, too
 
2014-02-23 11:21:35 AM  

Braggi: Another AA hate thread.  I go to AA.  I don't believe in god and it still works for me.  Imagine that.


Good for you!

Now explain to the rest of the class why that makes AA above reproach, criticism or scrutiny.
 
2014-02-23 11:25:05 AM  

Braggi: Another AA hate thread.  I go to AA.  I don't believe in god and it still works for me.  Imagine that.


Ditto.  I love how how the haters are saying that this is impossible.  There are plenty of people like us and they really have no idea what AA is about.
 
2014-02-23 11:25:49 AM  
I think that for many people AA works simply because -- when done correctly -- it involves joining a new peer group that spends time doing things other than drinking. No real magic involved in that, that I can see.
 
2014-02-23 11:26:07 AM  
I dont feel the religious thing is pushed much. At least not in my group. It's more or less a place for people who struggle with alcohol to get together and provide help for each other while airing their own personal stories about it. No more, no less.

Some people in the meetings rely on their idea of God to help them, others like myself look elsewhere.
 
2014-02-23 11:26:52 AM  

Braggi: Another AA hate thread.  I go to AA.  I don't believe in god and it still works for me.  Imagine that.


Maybe because you're actually putting in the work to try and make yourself better. And if you're inclined to behave that way, then the AA meetings are probably redundant.
 
2014-02-23 11:26:53 AM  

Endive Wombat: A guy I worked with years ago in the restaurant biz had an interesting situation concerning a DUI and court ordered AA meetings.  He is a staunch Atheist...kind of an asshole about it really.  Anyhoo, like 15 years ago he gets popped with a DUI in bumfark rural Michigan, So Dakota...somewhere over there and the Judge sentenced him with something like 50 AA meetings, some community service, etc.  Rather than get like 30 days jail, the court went that way because the local county jail was full.

He sued because the Judge/State required him to (his opinion, not mine) attend religious based meetings as punishment for his DUI, he claimed it was a violation of his 1st amendment rights (freedom to NOT practice a religion).  He also contended that because of the fact that there were no secular/non-religious 12 step programs within a reasonable distance from his work/home the Judge should drop the 12 step requirement all together.

Long story short, he won, and he would tell every person he encountered this story.  I must have heard either bits and pieces or the story in its entirety at lest 10 times.


While I am not particularly "religious" I do believe in God.  That said, I support this guy because he was absolutely, 100% correct in his lawsuit and good on him.
 
GBB
2014-02-23 11:26:58 AM  
My sister and I were pretty much atheist growing up.  She tried going to church due to pressure from Mom's side of the family and I did too from pressure from her.  But, in the end, atheist.  Then she went to college and became an alcoholic.  Went to AA and is sober, but now addicted to religion.

I liked her better drunk.
 
2014-02-23 11:28:40 AM  

drewogatory: nekom: I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.

hahahahaha. The real joke is that AA absolutely does NOT work and enjoys approx. the same success rate as quitting cold turkey.


I'm not sure you understand how this works. My father quit drinking cold turkey over thirty years ago, but he appreciates the support and camaraderie he gets from his group, and finds purpose in giving support to others.

Have you had trouble quitting your addiction?
 
2014-02-23 11:29:07 AM  
Since AA doesn't work for shiat, it hardly matters.

What's more annoying than a few hours with people talking about alcohol?
It's a recipe for relapse.
 
GBB
2014-02-23 11:30:14 AM  

Endive Wombat: A guy I worked with years ago in the restaurant biz had an interesting situation concerning a DUI and court ordered AA meetings.  He is a staunch Atheist...kind of an asshole about it really.  Anyhoo, like 15 years ago he gets popped with a DUI in bumfark rural Michigan, So Dakota...somewhere over there and the Judge sentenced him with something like 50 AA meetings, some community service, etc.  Rather than get like 30 days jail, the court went that way because the local county jail was full.

He sued because the Judge/State required him to (his opinion, not mine) attend religious based meetings as punishment for his DUI, he claimed it was a violation of his 1st amendment rights (freedom to NOT practice a religion).  He also contended that because of the fact that there were no secular/non-religious 12 step programs within a reasonable distance from his work/home the Judge should drop the 12 step requirement all together.

Long story short, he won, and he would tell every person he encountered this story.  I must have heard either bits and pieces or the story in its entirety at lest 10 times.


The judge should have said, "Fine.  30 days jail, 6 months probation, DL revoked 5 years."  Then drop the gavel and walk off the bench in his robe and pant-less.
 
2014-02-23 11:31:00 AM  

nekom: I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.


This. My ex-brother in law is in AA, and he's not drinking. Unfortunately, it was his drinking that masked his c*ntishness. Now he's a selfish, if sober, asshole. Interestingly, just before he quit boozing, he became a Roman Catholic. Not sure if there's a connection, or if it involves choirboys.
 
2014-02-23 11:32:35 AM  

hardinparamedic: Braggi: Another AA hate thread.  I go to AA.  I don't believe in god and it still works for me.  Imagine that.

Good for you!

Now explain to the rest of the class why that makes AA above reproach, criticism or scrutiny.


Because Francis is a nice Pope?
 
2014-02-23 11:33:48 AM  
What's he point of getting your corporal body sober, if you leave your soul condemned to writhe eternally in the lake of fire
 
2014-02-23 11:33:54 AM  
I've always lacked the physical fortitude to become an alcoholic. Puking is just too painful and a real deterrent to drinking again in the near future. However, I'm not a quitter.
 
2014-02-23 11:33:55 AM  
Endive Wombat:  ...  I must have heard either bits and pieces or the story in its entirety at lest 10 times.

When I read this sentence I immediately switched to an Irish accent.
 
2014-02-23 11:34:09 AM  
I had the same problem with the religion aspect until I realized my problem wasn't with god but with organized religion and the way people use it to suit their personal needs.

The whole program is based on a god as you understand him. It's all over the book.
 
2014-02-23 11:34:16 AM  

nekom: I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.


I think the bigger problem is that it doesn't work for the vast majority of people (if anyone--if your intervention is as effective as not intervening, is there really an effect?).
 
2014-02-23 11:36:55 AM  
Oh for God's Flying Spaghetti Monster's sake, "a power greater than ourselves" "higher power" and "God" is whatever spiritual connection you have to a higher power. "God" is just a word in English. The 12 steps endorses and follows no religion. Anyone who does so is violating the traditions and not properly following the program.

While this AAA thing is commendable, it should be superfluous. Unfortunately it is not for the very reason that religion itself becomes a plague and addiction when misused.
 
GBB
2014-02-23 11:37:12 AM  
I don't know if he got it from somewhere else, but a friend of mine said this once:

Why is it when you someone you don't drink, they ask "Why?  What happened?  Why don't you drink?"   Have you ever heard that conversation with anything else?
"Would you like mayo on that?"
"No, thanks.  I don't eat mayo."
"WHY?  What happened?  Why don't you want mayo?"
 
2014-02-23 11:37:22 AM  
media-cdn.tripadvisor.com

Yeah, they're getting really lenient as they lose the religion (best steak & egg breakfast in town).
 
2014-02-23 11:37:43 AM  

Valiente: nekom: I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.

This. My ex-brother in law is in AA, and he's not drinking. Unfortunately, it was his drinking that masked his c*ntishness. Now he's a selfish, if sober, asshole. Interestingly, just before he quit boozing, he became a Roman Catholic. Not sure if there's a connection, or if it involves choirboys.


He's not sober, he's just a dry drunk now.  He never changed himself, he only took alcohol out of the equation.
 
2014-02-23 11:38:17 AM  

Kinan: I had the same problem with the religion aspect until I realized my problem wasn't with god but with organized religion and the way people use it to suit their personal needs.

The whole program is based on a god as you understand him. It's all over the book.


Do they still close meetings with the Lord's Prayer? Just curious.
 
2014-02-23 11:39:33 AM  
Both of the people I know who've been through AA aren't drinking anymore.  They're still addicts, but they're hooked on AA & God instead of alcohol.   And in both cases, I'm not sure which addiction is actually worse...
 
2014-02-23 11:40:00 AM  

twistedmetal: I think the importance of the religion is a group to group thing.  Some emphasize it more than others.  I know my dad's group kind of calmed some members tits who got all preachy.


How does one calm members tits?
 
2014-02-23 11:41:37 AM  

Valiente: nekom: I should note that I'm not knocking AA.  Whatever works.

This. My ex-brother in law is in AA, and he's not drinking. Unfortunately, it was his drinking that masked his c*ntishness. Now he's a selfish, if sober, asshole. Interestingly, just before he quit boozing, he became a Roman Catholic. Not sure if there's a connection, or if it involves choirboys.


Yeah, people tend to blame the drinking for the assholish behavior when in reality they were always miserable assholes that drank to avoid the pain of dealing with their own personality defects.
 
2014-02-23 11:42:36 AM  

davynelson: Since AA doesn't work for shiat, it hardly matters.

What's more annoying than a few hours with people talking about alcohol?
It's a recipe for relapse.


Jane you ignorant slut. No one talks about alcohol. People do talk about the 12 steps like a personal honest inventory of the damage alcohol has caused you to do, and how can we make up for it.
 
2014-02-23 11:42:46 AM  

FirstNationalBastard: AAA is for minor league drunks.

img.pandawhale.com

 
2014-02-23 11:43:20 AM  

hardinparamedic: Now explain to the rest of the class why that makes AA above reproach, criticism or scrutiny.


Reproach, criticism, and scrutiny are fine. Pointless hate and FUD are not.

FARKers like to bash AA because it's too religious. These folks aren't fans of AA because it's not religious enough. So which way do should AA change to appeal to everyone? I'd say pissing off the extremists on both sides means they're striking a decent balance.

nekom: Whatever works.


This. If it works for you, grab onto it. If not, find something else.

/Coming up on a year sober in AA. Not particularly religious.
 
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