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Big Book Study - Post #13

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  • Jim
    Good morning and welcome back! Today we are at Chapter 4 - We Agnostics, Page 44. We should start by defining some terms. Agnostic is comprised of two parts:
    Message 1 of 80 , Jul 5, 2011
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      Good morning and welcome back!

      Today we are at Chapter 4 - We Agnostics, Page 44.

      We should start by defining some terms. "Agnostic" is comprised of
      two parts: "A" which is the Greek prefix for "Without" and "gnostic"
      which is "Knowledge." With this in mind our definition of "Agnostic"
      is: Without Knowledge of God.

      Although used interchangeably, "agnostic" and "atheist" mean two very
      different things. To be "Atheist" is to claim that there is no God,
      as opposed to being without knowledge of God (agnostic).

      How many times have we seen lists of questions that will allow you
      to diagnose your own alcoholism? Ten, twenty, fifty question each?
      Starting at paragraph 1 on page 44, we find that there are two
      questions:

      Question 1: "If, when you honestly want to, you find you cannot quit
      entirely, or

      Question 2: "if when drinking, you have little control over the
      amount you take, you are probably alcoholic."

      Reading through to the top of page 45 several powerful statements
      are made: "Our human resources, as marshalled by the will, were not
      sufficient; they failed utterly."

      What does that mean? What does that tell us about willpower? About
      human resources (Fellowship) alone? About our ability to win in hand
      to hand combat with the alcoholic obsession?

      At the top of paragraph 1: "Lack of power, that was our dilemma
      (Powerlessness). We had to find a power by which we could live, and
      it had to be a POWER GREATER THAN OURSELVES. Obviously. But where
      and how were we to find this Power?"

      Now we come to the purpose of the Big Book and the desired result of
      the AA program: "Well, that's exactly what this book is about. Its
      main object [and the object of the AA Program] is to enable you to
      find a Power greater than yourself WHICH WILL SOLVE YOUR PROBLEM
      (emphasis added)."

      Let's turn back for a second to The Foreword to the first edition.
      The second sentence says the following:

      "TO SHOW OTHER ALCOHOLICS PRECISELY HOW WE HAVE RECOVERED IS THE
      MAIN PURPOSE OF THIS BOOK." (This sentence was written in ALL CAPS
      in the first edition of the book).

      To recover from alcoholism, we need to find a Power greater than
      ourselves which will solve our problem. This book has all of the
      directions necessary to bring about permanent recovery from
      alcoholism, which is our common problem. The answers are within the
      text and throughout the coming weeks we will continue to delve into
      the solution.

      One of the things I was thinking about regarding this chapter is the
      name "We Agnostics", not "The Agnostics" - I mean, it's almost if
      they assumed that everyone was an agnostic. Anyone care to explore
      why they named this chapter the way they did?

      With our next post we will continue on Page 46. Have a great day!

      Jim

      Weekend Big Book Studies with Jim & Dave - visit:
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Big_Book_Seminars
    • sottovoice
      Good morning and welcome back! Today we are at Chapter 4 - We Agnostics, Page 44. We should start by defining some terms. Agnostic is comprised of two parts:
      Message 80 of 80 , Feb 18, 2014
      • 0 Attachment
        Good morning and welcome back!

        Today we are at Chapter 4 - We Agnostics, Page 44.

        We should start by defining some terms. "Agnostic" is comprised of
        two parts: "A" which is the Greek prefix for "Without" and "gnostic"
        which is "Knowledge." With this in mind our definition of "Agnostic"
        is: Without Knowledge of God.

        Although used interchangeably, "agnostic" and "atheist" mean two very
        different things. To be "Atheist" is to claim that there is no God,
        as opposed to being without knowledge of God (agnostic).

        How many times have we seen lists of questions that will allow you
        to diagnose your own alcoholism? Ten, twenty, fifty question each?
        Starting at paragraph 1 on page 44, we find that there are two
        questions:

        Question 1: "If, when you honestly want to, you find you cannot quit
        entirely, or

        Question 2: "if when drinking, you have little control over the
        amount you take, you are probably alcoholic."

        Reading through to the top of page 45 several powerful statements
        are made: "Our human resources, as marshalled by the will, were not
        sufficient; they failed utterly."

        What does that mean? What does that tell us about willpower? About
        human resources (Fellowship) alone? About our ability to win in hand
        to hand combat with the alcoholic obsession?

        At the top of paragraph 1: "Lack of power, that was our dilemma
        (Powerlessness). We had to find a power by which we could live, and
        it had to be a POWER GREATER THAN OURSELVES. Obviously. But where
        and how were we to find this Power?"

        Now we come to the purpose of the Big Book and the desired result of
        the AA program: "Well, that's exactly what this book is about. Its
        main object [and the object of the AA Program] is to enable you to
        find a Power greater than yourself WHICH WILL SOLVE YOUR PROBLEM
        (emphasis added)."

        Let's turn back for a second to The Foreword to the first edition.
        The second sentence says the following:

        "TO SHOW OTHER ALCOHOLICS PRECISELY HOW WE HAVE RECOVERED IS THE
        MAIN PURPOSE OF THIS BOOK." (This sentence was written in ALL CAPS
        in the first edition of the book).

        To recover from alcoholism, we need to find a Power greater than
        ourselves which will solve our problem. This book has all of the
        directions necessary to bring about permanent recovery from
        alcoholism, which is our common problem. The answers are within the
        text and throughout the coming weeks we will continue to delve into
        the solution.

        One of the things I was thinking about regarding this chapter is the
        name "We Agnostics", not "The Agnostics" - I mean, it's almost if
        they assumed that everyone was an agnostic. Anyone care to explore
        why they named this chapter the way they did?

        With our next post we will continue on Page 46. Have a great day!

        Jim
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