For The Professional
Secular AA meetings were established to address the needs of those who idenify as agnostic, athiest or "freethinker" and prefer a non-theistic based approach to their 12 Step Recovery in Alcoholics Anonymous.
History of AA & Professional Community
"A.A. might never have gotten off the ground without the help of a myriad of caring nonalcoholic professionals — doctors, members of the clergy, educators, law enforcement officials..."
Alcoholics Anonymous & Professional Community
"AA.’s history shows that cooperation with a wide range of nonalcoholic professionals who often encounter suffering alcoholics in the course of their work has been an integral part of A.A. since its beginnings. In fact, A.A. might never have gotten off the ground without the help of a myriad of caring nonalcoholic professionals — doctors, members of the clergy, educators, law enforcement officials — who came to recognize early on the effectiveness that A.A. was demonstrating in helping alcoholics to recover. Critical in this relationship between A.A. and its nonalcoholic friends has always been the spirit of collaboration. This cooperation remains a cornerstone in the ongoing relationship between A.A. and the many mental health professionals who work with alcoholics"
"While A.A. is not affiliated with any outside organization, it has long history of providing
information about A.A. to professionals, including such international health organizations as the
World Health Organization (WHO), which estimates that approximately 107 million people suffer from alcohol use disorder (AUD), with less than 10% receiving treatment.
-Exerpts, About AA: A newsletter For Professionals, Spring 2022 from AA General Service Office
About Secular AA For The Professional
Special purpose meetings have been part of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) as a whole for over 50 years, and part of the 120,000 autonomus mutual aid meetings worldwide. This includes LGBTQ+, women’s BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Colour), young people’s and career specific meetings for pilots, doctors and lawyers. Like any of these AA groups, secular AA is part of AA as a whole.
Secular and Agnostic AA meetings were organized by recovered AA members to address the needs of those who idenify as agnostic, athiest or "freethinker". For these individuals, a higher power is still important, but can take many non-theistic forms. Examples includes science and reason; the collective conciousness of the group (aka "GOD: Group of Drunks"); one's own higher conciousness led by spiritual or moral principles such as Love and Compassion. These are only a sampling of many possibilitie, of which all are welcome AND all are sufficient to recover from alcoholism through the 12 Steps.
Atheist and agnostic newcomers to Alcoholics Anonymous are on the rise as demographics change and since the mid-1970s, a need for AA “without the God-talk” has grown around the world. Furthermore, for adherents to religions outside of the Judeo/Christian bias of AA literature, a non-religioius format for AA supports anyone with alcohol use disorder regardless of their personal faith.
The Secular Credo
Guided in accordance with The Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous*, Secular AA conducts a meeting where alcoholics may feel free to express doubts and disbeliefs. We do not endorse nor oppose any religion, atheism, or beliefs. Our only wish to ensure suffering alcoholics that they can find sobriety in AA without having to accept the beliefs of other or deny their own.
There is room in A.A. for people of all shades of belief and non-belief. The principle of openmindedness is the foundation of secular meetings- where all are encouraged to respect one another's freedom of thought & speech.
Would you like to learn more? Contact us at BeyondBeliefToronto@gmail.com We can help you help others suffering from addiction including your clients, patients, students or staff by:
Connecting them to Secular Meetings around the world;
Arrange for an AA member to come visit your organization and speak about their experience, strength and hope in recovery as a secular/agnostic person in AA;
We can even provide you with the resources to start a secular AA group in your professional community.
*12 Traditions include: 3. The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking; 4: Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or A.A. as a whole; 5: Each group has but one primary purpose — to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers; and 10: Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy. For a full list, click here.
The secular AA community is growning exponentially as the World joined together on Zoom as a result of CoVid 19. See our general resources page to learn more about secular recovery networks, books, podcasts & events +more! In Person Meetings are held in Toronto, GTA & surrounding regions, with a variety of zoom online local and international meetings.
For the Health Care Professional