TRADITION NINE CHECK LIST
AA as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.
1. Do I still try to boss things in AA?
I can remember times when others thought I was the boss of my AA group because it was newly formed and I was one of the founders of the group then the steering committee pretty much ran the meetings but as soon as the group got strong enough we held group business meetings where the members of the group expressed their ideas on how to run the meetings the group conscience took over and the steering committee was dissolved and it became a meeting from our group conscience
2. Do I resist formal aspects of AA because I fear them as authoritative?
I resist some aspects of AA because I feel some of our traditions are way to often represented
In a fashion not consistent to carrying the message to all who suffer from alcoholism some in our fellowship turn the tradition around to serve their own purpose not the good of all --Bill W when writing the traditions said there is always room to improve on them --and I strongly believe they are not etched in stone never to be changed to reflect the needs of 2005 not 1946
3. Am I mature enough to understand and use all elements of the AA program - even if no one makes me do so - with a sense of personal responsibility?
For me to survive and stay sober myself I need to use all the elements of AA because I am responsible to anyone who reaches out for help from alcoholism and this includes all the many people who come to our doors that are dual addicted I can not help half a person So their experiences must be heard not criticized by others who can't identify with them after all AA is not about just one persons thoughts
4. Do I exercise patience and humility in any AA job I take?
Having serve in many positions in the AA structure I had to have lots of patience and humility to serve all in AA yes even the minority opinions of our group members they have the right to be heard and this is part of my duties as a servant to make sure they are heard even when I personally think they are wrong who knows I could be the one wrong its up to the group conscience to say what they want not me but I do have the right to express myself in the groups business meetings even it I am in the minority I have to right to speak
5. Am I aware of all those to whom I am responsible in any AA job?
Yes I am aware of all who I serve in the fellowship of AA and by being aware I have been asked to fill many service positions in my years of sobriety if I were not aware of this the groups conscience would not have elected me to serve them in the first place I know what it is to be a trusted servent of my group my district my inter group my area and on up the world services
6. Why doesn't every AA group need a constitution and bylaws?
It is clear now that we ought never name boards to govern us but it is equally clear that we shall always need to authorize workers to serve us It is the difference between the spirit of vested authority and the spirit of service It is in this spirit of service that we give the AA Group's conscience the voice of our group and the power to carry out there wishes
Tradition three clearly states "You are an A.A. member if you say so. You can declare yourself in; nobody can keep you out. No matter who you are, no matter how low you've gone, no matter how grave your emotional complications - even your crimes - we still can't deny you A.A. We don't want to keep you out. We aren't a bit afraid you'll harm us, never mind how twisted or violent you may be. We just want to be sure that you get the same great chance for sobriety that we've had. So you're an A.A. member the minute you declare yourself."
7. Have I learned to step out of an AA job gracefully and profit there by when the time comes?
Yes the very purpose of any position in AA is to normally serve for a two year period and then rotate into another position in this way we get to know how the whole service structure fron the group down to the GSO works and profit from our experiences in serving our groups districts inter groups and area's there is a vast amount of service work to be preformed and by rotating we best serve the common good of all
8. What has rotation to do with anonymity? Or humility?
Our goal is personal sobriety our services bring sobriety within reach of all who want it
What would happen if the meeting all closed because nobody wanted to open the doors make the coffee greet people at the doors we stay whole because we have to anonymity is the key to all our service work we do not do it to gain recognition we do it to survive we do not need praise or any pat on the back for staying sober and helping other Humility allows us to do all this anonymously wealth prestige or power could tempt us if we did not have that humility to remember For our group purpose, there is but one ultimate authority - a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience--- the real voice of Alcoholics Anonymous
© The checklist is a reprint from June 1970 Grapevine