Bill Wilson, founder, was a sick christian elitist. This is nothing more than a cult to get you to believe and limit you. Now how is this a cure?
Some of the 12 step rules are/were blatantly religious:
2. Came to believe that God could restore us to sanity.
3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care and direction of God.
5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.
6. Were entirely willing that God remove all these defects of character.
7. Humbly, on our knees, asked Him to remove our shortcomings — holding nothing back.
11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our contact with God, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
Let's remember that most members rejected these rules in the phrasing so they changed them. For example, the word "God" in step 2 was replaced by "a power greater than ourselves." Why can't it be replaced by "the strongest power that comes from you" or something like that? And why the lord's prayer? Why not a weekly oath to not drinking?
Let's remember that if all of these rules are not accepted, you can not be cured. Isn't that the goal?
YOU don't matter, but this god guy does. Sound familiar?
I once attended a meeting with a friend years ago. He had to go due to court and said I'd drive and go with him. The stories from these people are heartbreaking and I immediately saw the camaraderie being a great help to each other.
BUT THEN... they end the meeting with a reminder that god comes first and you must be weakened to bring your self to him and to turn over your life to him. They end with the lord's prayer and that pretty much negated the whole story for me.
Bottom line is that YOU are the highest power in your life and you have to believe in yourself to be positive. To quit.
Here's a great article on the origins of AA: http://www.orange-papers.org/orange-rroot030.html
From the article:
So the Twelve Steps really were, right from the very start, intended to
start a new religion — Bill Wilson's flavor of Buchmanism,
and to give the followers "vital spiritual experiences" and "huge emotional rearrangements" and "religious experiences" by "completely deflating their egos",
and to turn the followers into religious fanatics — "religiomaniacs".
Bill Wilson believed that religious fanaticism — religiomania — was The Only Answer for alcoholics, and he said so often.