143 Spiritual or Religion

143. Spirituality or Religion?

The distinction between Spirituality and Religion made simple. The Chair, Alcoholics Anonymous General Service Board wrote in the 2010 International Convention’s special edition of the Grapevine, about three basic issues to address. One issue facing Alcoholics Anonymous is clearing up the distinction between spirituality and religion. Recent court cases claimed where people referred to Alcoholics Anonymous by the courts have claimed Alcoholics Anonymous is "a religion" the courts cannot force them to attend. Alcoholics Anonymous does not have theology, dogma, or authorities, unlike religion. "If you want what we have and are willing to go to any length to get it-then you are ready to take certain steps." "Here are the steps we took, which are suggested as a program of recovery:" (Alcoholics Anonymous Chapter 5) "The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking." (Tradition Three) Our Program is suggestive only, no rules or authorities to deal with. I am deeply grateful for this way of life, and at times overzealous sharing it. I want others to experience this way of life. Years ago I gave the impression that it was my way or the highway. No wonder a newcomer viewed Alcoholics Anonymous having its own brand of theology, dogma, and authorities? It is important that each one of us take responsibility for the decisions we make and actions we take. If I say I want to the stop drinking and I want what you have then I am taking responsibility for my decisions and my actions. If someone else tells me I have to stop drinking and I have to work the Program the way that person tells me, I will resist.


1. Were you told that Alcoholics Anonymous is a Spiritual Program?

2. What is the distinction between spirituality and religion?

Random Awakening

I want to practice "Thy Will Be Done" throughout this day by saying "Thy Love Be Done".