Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism.
The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. A.A. is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.
Copyright © The A.A. Grapevine, Inc. • Reprinted with Permission
Agnostic AA Preamble
At many AA meetings for agnostics, atheists and freethinkers, the meetings will begin with a reading of the Agnostic AA Preamble instead of, or along with, the AA Preamble. There are a variety of versions used by groups from around the world, but the basic sentiment is that these meetings are safe havens for expressing any doubt or disbelief one may have in a deity or spirituality in general.
This group of A.A. attempts to maintain a tradition of free expression, and conduct a meeting where alcoholics may feel free to express any doubts or dis-beliefs they may have, and to share their own personal form of spiritual experience, their search for it, or their rejection of it. We do not endorse or oppose any form of religion or atheism. Our only wish is to assure suffering alcoholics that they can find sobriety in A.A. without having to accept anyone else beliefs or having to deny their own.
Some may be surprised that Agnostics, Atheists and Freethinkers in AA would revise the preamble for their own purpose, but this is nothing new. In fact, shortly after the first AA preamble was published in 1947, AA groups in Texas already crafted their own version which was read at their meetings. It wasn’t uncommon for groups to write their own preamble; at one time many groups had their own version. In fact, here’s an example of a preamble written by AA’s in Baltimore: Baltimore AA Preamble.
The tradition of group autonomy assures that every AA group may conduct their meetings as they see fit, providing their actions do not affect other groups or AA as a whole. This gives AA a rich heritage of diversity and inclusiveness, and makes possible special purpose groups for agnostics and atheists, as well as special purpose groups for Gay, Lesbian andTransgender Alcoholics, Native Americans in AA, Lawyers in AA, Medical Professionals in AA, Pilots in AA, and Young People in AA.