QUOTES ( Grapevine)

Definition of Quote: repeat of words or a text by another person.
Synonyms of Quote: recite, repeat, reproduce, restate, echo, reiterate, excerpt, etc.

These notes are from recovery in AA and/or related 12 step programs.
Readers are encouraged to click external links for more detail.
We hope you find them helpful.
Love in fellowship.

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When you’ve been lost, lonely, forgotten, rejected, it’s the most important thing in the world to have somebody shake your hand. –Santa Fe, N.M., May 1972/”How AA Works”

If we can stop this frantic drive to prove that we are remarkable people, it is quite likely that we will settle down and really enjoy whatever life has to offer us. –New York, N.Y., August 1948/”Those Depressions-Make Them Work for Good!”

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Life’s formidable array of pains and problems will require many different degrees of acceptance … Sometimes, we have to find the right kind of acceptance for each day. Sometimes, we need to develop acceptance for what may come to pass tomorrow and, yet again, we shall have to accept a condition that may never change. Then, too, there frequently has to be a right and realistic acceptance of grievous flaws within ourselves and serious faults within those about us – defects that may not be fully remedied. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., March 1962/”What Is Acceptance?”

Hope is tremendous progress for someone who once was ‘hopeless. –Philadelphia, Pa., April 1990/From: “The Hoper”/AA Grapevine

We are called to unity, not uniformity. –Wash., January 1984/AA Grapevine |

The alcoholic is in no greater peril than when he takes sobriety for granted –The Language of the Heart | Grapevine/(bill W)

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The most important thing AA has given me is the chance to get to know someone I never knew — myself Grapevine / January 11, 2017  “Getting to Know You — I Mean Me,” Calgary, Alberta, December 1994 AA Grapevine

Sometimes when I think I am having a bad day, I am really learning a hard lesson, cheap. And sometimes, when I think I am having a good day, I am really in trouble and just haven’t recognized it yet.  I’m really no judge at all of what kind of day I’m having. 12/01 – “Good Days and Bad Days,” Brentwood, Tenn., April 1991 -AA Grapevine

Success and failure share a common denominator … Both are temporary… –Grapevine

What matters is what works, not my opinion of what works. –“Trusting the Silence,” November 1991/Beginner’s Book: Getting and Staying Sober in AA

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Be willing to be willing to follow directions and you will find your life changing in all areas. –Grapevine 07/02

Empathy, not sympathy or pity, is the most useful quality a sponsor can cultivate. –Grapevine 13/02

Drinking is no longer a problem, but my thinking sure is. Writing a gratitude list puts the brakes on negative thoughts, turns me back toward the light, and helps me to see the beauty in everyday life. –Grapevine 19/02 .

I was told by a sober member of AA that if I wanted to stay sober I would need to do three things: get a sobriety date and don’t change it, get a sponsor, and get a home group. –Grapevine

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If I want to be of some use to someone (my family, my employer, my community) then I can be a leader by becoming a servant. This is one of those crazy paradoxes we find all over the AA program: being a servant to be a leader. –Grapevine

I have come to believe that my drinking insanity is only one form of the craziness to which we AAs are prone. I call it Insanity A. Insanity B is finding out what works for you — and then not doing it. –Grapevine

I believe that my drinking insanity is only one form of the craziness to which we AAs are prone. I call it Insanity A. Insanity B is finding out what works for you — and then not doing it.

I can’t imagine anything that would make me so mad, glad, or sad that I would want to go back to what I was before AA. –Grapevine

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Until I was at my complete bottom, alcohol wasn’t even my problem. But thankfully, when I did hit bottom, AA was not hard to find. –“Why Not Tell the World?” November 2013 AA Grapevine

If we dwell on the past or the future … we stop changing. –“Awareness,” September 1974 AA Grapevine

I live in the Three Legacies of Unity, Recovery, and Service, and have gained 36 spiritual principles to help me through life one day at a time. “Get in the Car,” Gig Harbour, Wash., April 2011 AA Grapevine

When I get a stomach-ache, it is generally because I’ve eaten something that hasn’t agreed with me. My mental indigestion comes from some story, bit of gossip or circumstance that I’ve swallowed without thinking. –Got a Pain in Your Feelings?,” Elmhurst, N.Y., March 1950 Emotional Sobriety II: The Next Frontier / AA Grapevine

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I can better understand when I learn to listen. –“The Fine Art of Listening,” September 2008 / AA Grapevine

Sometimes I wonder if this illness isn’t a gift rather than a problem. –Kingston, Ontario, July 1980 / A Reason for Living,” / AA Grapevine

Through Step Five, God has removed my shame about being an alcoholic. –Syracuse, N.Y., May 2001 / “Lifting the Burden,” Step By Step / AA Grapevine

Emotional and instinctual satisfactions, I saw, were really the extra dividends of having love, offering love, and expressing love appropriate to each relation of life. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1958/”The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety”

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I have a feeling that if I ever find myself in Heaven, it will be from backing away from Hell. –Father Edward Dowling, as quoted by AA Co-Founder, Bill W., June 1960

After telling Dr. Bob my story, I explained how truly I needed him. Would he allow me to help him, I might remain sober myself. The seed that was to flower as AA began to grow toward the light. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1951

Where before there was a gaping hole of emptiness, I seek within me that faint ember of self-love, self-worth, and desire for goodness. –Westfield, Mass., July 1997

Asking for help is not just a path to humility; it is a path to connection with my fellows and with God. –Phoenix, Ariz., April 2011 “HELP,”, AA Grapevine

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Today, as I look back over 27-plus years of sobriety, I can simply thank Him for being wherever I am going before I even get there.–Monaco, Pa, April 2011 “An Unmade Bed,” AA Grapevine

Before we can release the spirit from its imprisonment, we must first imprison the spirits in the bottle. We place the bottle on the shelf, place ourselves in the hands of AA as we understand it, and prepare for the adventure of sobriety. –Manhattan, N.Y., February 1984/”Freeing the Spirit,” AA Grapevine

For me, there is no better feeling than the one I get running into another alcoholic when I’m feeling down. We alcoholics are bonded together by the sadness of a deadly disease and the miracle of a spiritual solution. –AA Grapevine

Sobriety isn’t a discrete list of tasks that you do and then check off; it’s a state of being that pervades every aspect of your life. –AA Grapevine

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I have begun to trust my friends enough to lean on them. –Fla., July 1977/”My Name Is Helen” Only in giving do we receive in full measure. –Gates Mills, OH, September 1975/”Compassion”

Emotional and instinctual satisfactions, I saw, were really the extra dividends of having love, offering love, and expressing love appropriate to each relation of life. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1958/”The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety” / AA Grapevine

Our mistakes of yesterday can be stepping stones for tomorrow if we do something about them today. –New York, N.Y., September 1947

No matter what is going on in my life, no matter how bad things seem, I can always find something to be grateful for if I just look hard enough. –Mesa, Ariz., March 2010/”Not On Fire” / AA Grapevine

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The temporary security of material things is a hollow shelter if built at the expense of spiritual growth. –Stanton, Calif., July 1968 / AA Grapevine

I’m not here to change Alcoholics Anonymous; Alcoholics Anonymous is here to change me. –San Mateo, Calif., December 1995/”Ten Minutes of Oneness”

The power in these rooms is greater than the sum total of those of us present.–Lodi, Calif., March 1987

If you want to be happy, go to a meeting. If you want to be twice as happy, go to two meetings. –Millbrae, Calif., July 1980

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Before we can be of any use to anybody else, we must find the beginnings of the answer for ourselves. –Rev. Samuel M. Shoemaker, Friend of AA, October 1955

Where before there was a gaping hole of emptiness, I seek within me that faint ember of self-love, self-worth, and desire for goodness. –Westfield, Mass., July 1997

If we follow our Traditions, we will survive and, I hope, grow. The Traditions tell us to serve – not govern; to attract – not promote; to carry the message – not force it on anyone; to keep the three legacies alive: recovery, unity, and service. These are our lifelines. –Raleigh, N.C., January 2000/”Keeping Recovery Alive”

The core of our AA procedure is one alcoholic talking to another, whether that be sitting on a kerbstone, in a home, or at a meeting. It’s the message, not the place; it’s the talk, not the alms. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., May 1948

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Last summer I visited the Akron cemetery where Bob and Anne lie. Their simple stone says never a word about Alcoholics Anonymous. This made me so glad I cried. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1955/”Why Alcoholics Anonymous Is Anonymous”

We are all important, but not for the reasons we think. –Denver, Colo., September 1993/”The Deeper Dimension”

Every day, every meeting, there’s something more to learn.–Arlington, Va., October 1997/”Chair Master,” Emotional Sobriety II

Sanity begins with the admission of reality into the mind. –April 1976/”The Only Revolution” I am trying to do what I can to love, today. Can anything else be more important? –Pasadena, Calif., April 1978/”The Power of Good”

Never in my life had I truly understood what being self-supporting meant. I had relied on others to take care of me, not just financially, but emotionally and spiritually, too, and I let my life go to hell if they didn’t. –Los Angeles, Calif., July 2007 / Grapevine

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The foundation stone of freedom from fear is that of faith: a faith that, despite all worldly appearances to the contrary, causes me to believe that I live in a universe that makes sense. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1962/”This Matter of Fear”

Guilt is really the reverse of the coin of pride. Guilt aims at self-destruction, and pride aims at the destruction of others. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., November 1960/Grapevine

AA is not a place; it’s an attitude of mind, a warmth of the heart – a spiritual fourth dimension where material things can’t get the upper hand. –“A New Truth,” Los Angeles, Calif., May 1966

My sponsor told me that if I stayed away from the first drink a day at a time and followed the suggested Twelve Steps, I could lead a sober life. She didn’t promise me health, wealth, happiness, love — or comfort. All she promised me was sobriety! –Millburn, N.J., July 1971 “Reality Can Be Uncomfortable,”  Emotional Sobriety II / Grapevine

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At some point in each today, we recovering alcoholics need to pay ourselves a friendly visit. –‘Savouring Our Sobriety’, North Hollywood, Calif., August 1982

A coffee pot simmers on the kitchen stove, a hospital sobers the stricken sufferer, general headquarters broadcasts the AA message … All these symbolize AA in action. For action is the magic word of Alcoholics Anonymous. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., November 1951/”Services Make AA Tick”/Best of the Grapevine, Volume 1

In a garden we remove or control undesirable weeds; in my personal sobriety, I remove the things that have been blocking me; and in my home group, by means of group inventory, I do something about the things that cause problems.
We can’t be all things to all people, so let’s do the thing we do best and that is carry the message of recovery from alcohol. –London, Ontario, February 1992/”Freedom From Alcohol,”

The group I joined saved my life … For an hour, I was safe. For an hour, I had a haven among those whose fear had once been as great as my own. I did not give my fear away – they took it. They eased it from my grasp with hugs and laughter, with shared experience. –“The Scariest Thing”/Carlsbad, Calif., June 2006

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My willingness to have my defects of character removed was bolstered by the realization that little, if any, spiritual growth was possible as long as I held on to my old ideas and defects. –“Seventh Step”, Brighton, Colo., November 1970

If you sponsor people, you’ll never need a mirror. –August 2001 “The Mouth That Roared,” Emotional Sobriety / Grapevine

My willingness to have my defects of character removed was bolstered by the realization that little, if any, spiritual growth was possible as long as I held on to my old ideas and defects. –Seventh Step, Brighton, Colo., November 1970

When life is easy, I usually assume it’s God’s way and I’m quite spiritual. But when I’m in emotional trouble, I assume life’s a drag and that God’s gone fishing. –“Winners and Whiners”, Port Townsend, Wash., October 1994

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The effort to escape from truth is the father of anxiety. –“Truth,” Key West, Fla., August 1973

We neither ran nor fought. But accept we did. And then we began to be free. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., March 1962/”What Is Acceptance?”

My spiritual awakening has involved three major leaps: Save Me, Help Me, and Use Me. Essex Junction, Vt., February 2000 “Save Me, Help Me, Use Me,” AA Grapevine

As faith grows, so does inner security. –‘This Matter of Fear’, AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1962

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I believe that a man’s value to himself is the sum total of his positive reaction to the little things in life. –“Don’t Put It Off,” St. Paul, Minn., October 1952

One of the major purposes of the last three Steps is to keep us from complacency, to keep us growing so that we don’t fall back into our old, sick ways and perhaps even into active alcoholism.” –West Henrietta, N.Y., October 2007 “Step Ten: Up Close and Personal,” Emotional Sobriety II / Grapevine

Truth… cut the shackles that once bound us to alcohol. It continues to release us from conflicts and miseries beyond reckoning; it banishes fear and isolation. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., August 1961/”This Matter of Honesty” / Grapevine

Facing ourselves … is often more difficult than being honest with another person. –“Are We Really Willing to Change?” Manhattan, N.Y., December 1980/Step By Step: Real AAs, Real Recovery

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Just how and when we tell the truth – or keep silent – can often reveal the difference between genuine integrity and none at all. –“This Matter of Honesty”, AA Co-Founder, Bill W., August 1961

It is very difficult to steer a parked car and make much progress toward any destination … In short, I had to be going somewhere before I could be guided. –“Wrinkles in My Ego,” Rochester, N.Y., October 1979/Step By Step: Real AAs, Real Recovery

Mere change is not necessarily progress.” AA Co-Founder, Bill W., October 1945 “The Book Is Born,”  The Language of the Heart

Following a spiritual path has become increasingly essential to me. Contrary to my fear that taking Step Three would condemn me to a life of brave self-sacrifice, I find instead that it frees me to think and act as my truest self. –“A Remarkable Sensation,” Thompson, Pa., March 1997/Emotional Sobriety: The Next Frontier

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I had been living too much alone, too much aloof from my fellows, and too deaf to that voice within. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1946/”The Individual in Relation to AA As a Group”

Life is lived moment to moment … and every moment provides me with an opportunity for growth. –Madison, Wis., November 2010  “Drama Queen,” Emotional Sobriety II

Isn’t a donation of my time and services just as important as my donation of cash? What if my home group had money for coffee, rent, and literature, but no one to open the meeting room and make the coffee? –Manassas, Va., July 1992 “AA Needs More Than Just Money,” AA Grapevine

There is no you or me or them. Everything is connected and the salvation of each of us is linked to the salvation of all of us. –“The Steps Are the Program,” Riverside, Ill., July 1975

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We have all known and seen miracles – the healing of broken individuals, the rebuilding of broken homes. And always, it has been constructive, personal Twelfth Step work based on an ever-upward-looking faith which has done the job. –AA Co-Founder, Dr. Bob, September 1948/”The Fundamentals – In Retrospect”

A large part of my recovery has been in learning how not to listen to myself. Tucson, Ariz., March 1988 “The Work at Hand,”  Emotional Sobriety

Sobriety is a constant process of uncovering, discovering, and discarding. Craig, Colo. January 1997 “Paying the Price for Improvement,” Emotional Sobriety II

We cannot grow very much unless we constantly try to envision what the eternal spiritual values are. AA Co-Founder, Bill W., June 1961 “Humility for Today,” The Language of the Heart

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The only thing that could chase my disease was the sun rising on a new morning. Just like when I was counting days, and I would wake up and think, Hey, I made it. –“Meetings in the Bank,” N.Y., NY, June 2009/Emotional Sobriety II

The essence of all growth is a willingness to change for the better and then an unremitting willingness to shoulder whatever responsibility this entails. –“Responsibility Is Our Theme”, AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1965

I’ve learned that I am not responsible for anyone’s happiness except my own. Most importantly, I learned that true happiness is an inside job. –“Recovery Is a Wonderland,” Brooklyn, N.Y., July 2010/Emotional Sobriety II

My local meetings are big on this spot-check reminder: you get what you get; it’s what you do with it that counts. York Harbour, ME, October 2001 “We Get What We Get,”  Emotional Sobriety

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Sometimes we register surprise, shock, and anger when people find fault with AA. We are apt to be disturbed to such an extent that we cannot benefit from constructive criticism. This sort of resentment makes no friends and achieves no constructive purpose. Certainly, this is an area in which we can improve. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1965/”Responsibility Is Our Theme”

Spirituality is not based on logic, it is faith-driven. Faith makes the impossible possible. –“Sk8ting Through Life,” Sacramento, California, September 2005

If we examine every disturbance we have, great or small, we will find at the root of it some unhealthy dependency and its consequent unhealthy demand.
Let us, with God’s help, continually surrender these hobbling liabilities. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1958/”The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety”

Our alcoholism is a sickness we no longer fear to discuss. AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1946

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I have had to face my past, one episode at a time, and become willing to look at the truth. I could feel the pain and fear, like trolls under the bridge, waiting to jump out and challenge my self-esteem. –Cleveland, OH, February 1993/”Facing the Truth,”

Absolute humility would consist of a state of complete freedom from myself, freedom from all the claims that my defects of character now lay so heavily upon me. Perfect humility would be a full willingness, in all times and places, to find and to do the will of God. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., June 1961/”Humility for Today”

I believe anyone can be helped if they have an honest desire to stop drinking. I’m living proof. –The Pas, Manitoba, July 1999/”Ripped Jeans and Threadbare High-Tops,”

Nobody argued about whose Higher Power was higher. –“It Works for Me,” Riverside, Illinois, September 2007

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I do not need to make amends on my hands and knees; I need to walk tall, without false pride. When I go in humility and sincerely ask people to forgive me, this will remove the burden from my shoulders. –Reynoldsburg, OH, September 1979/”Persons We Had Harmed,”

Habits are like cork or lead — they tend to keep you up or hold you down. –Honolulu, HI, November 1962/”Short Takes”

We began to see adversity as a God-given opportunity to develop the kind of courage which is born of humility, rather than bravado. Thus we were enabled to accept ourselves, our circumstances, and our fellows. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1962/”This Matter of Fear”

Putting principles before personalities, both inside and outside the Fellowship, does not always endear me to everyone, but I would rather be disliked for what I am than liked for what I am not. –Coventry, United Kingdom, December 2007/”Step Twelve: The Whole of AA”

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More and more we regard all who labour in the total field of alcoholism as our companions on a march from darkness into light. We see that we can accomplish together what we could never accomplish in separation and in rivalry. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., March 1958/On the Alcoholism Front

It is not stupid to accept myself and others complete with our imperfections. It would be stupid not to. –Islamadora, Fla., November 1971 / The Impossible Dream,”, Emotional Sobriety II

Self-justification is a universal destroyer of harmony and of love. It sets man against man, nation against nation. By it, every form of folly and violence can be made to look right, and even respectable. Of course it is not for us to condemn. We need only investigate ourselves. -AA Co-Founder, Bill W., June 1961 / Humility for Today,”, The Language of the Heart

Serenely remarking to his attendant, ‘I think this is it,’ Dr. Bob passed out of our sight and hearing November sixteenth at noonday. So ended the consuming malady wherein he had so well shown us how high faith can rise over grievous distress. As he had lived, so he had died, supremely aware that in his Father’s House are many Mansions. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1951

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Sobriety — freedom from alcohol — through the teaching and practice of the Twelve Steps, is the sole purpose of an AA group. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., February 1958

With a recovering alcoholic, action has to come before understanding and faith … We have to act our way to right thinking, rather than the reverse. –New York, N,Y., January 1968/”What About This 24-Hour Plan?”

The simplicity of this program never changes — what works is constant: trust in God, clean house, and work with others. –Grapevine: Concord, CA; 1997

The alcoholic slip is not a symptom of a psychotic condition. There’s nothing screwy about it at all. The patient simply didn’t follow directions. –William Duncan Silkworth, MD, January 1947/”Slips and Human Nature”

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I was told that sometimes a good sponsor disturbs the comfortable and comforts the disturbed. –Dover, Pa., June 1991/”The Gift of Time”

Complaining is not an action step. –Indianapolis, Ind., August 1982/”Distilled Spirits”

At the beginning we sacrificed alcohol. We had to, or it would have killed us. But we couldn’t get rid of alcohol unless we made other sacrifices. Big shot-ism and phony thinking had to go. We had to toss self-justification, self-pity, and anger right out the window. We had to quit the crazy contest for personal prestige and big bank balances. We had to take personal responsibility for our sorry state and quit blaming others for it. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1955/”Why Alcoholics Anonymous Is Anonymous”

Talking about what bothers me helps it lose its power over me. –Martinsville, W. Va., January 1990/”Together We Can”

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I’m learning to be a mother, a friend, a grandmother, and a sister. My friends are a close-knit support group, and they’re as near as the telephone. –Arlington, TX, July 1994/”A Long Way Down”

When we love, we will see in others what we wish to see in ourselves. –North Hollywood, Calif., September 1988/”Love”

Pride in my intelligence blinded me to how much I did not know. –Greensboro, N.C., February 1987/”Ph. Drunk”

To be teachable, I had to be reachable –The Winner’s Guide to Boring Meetings,” Wollstonecraft, May 1984

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My Higher Power works incognito, defying definition and requiring faith. –“Working Incognito,” State College, Pa., April 1994

Truth is not a bludgeon to be used indiscriminately … When I am asked for an opinion or advice, I give it to the best of my ability with as much gentleness, understanding, and tolerance as I can scrape up. –Key West, Fla., August 1973/”Truth”

The Traditions are neither rules, regulations, nor laws. No sanctions or punishments can be invoked for their infractions. Perhaps in no other area of society would these principles succeed. Yet in this Fellowship of alcoholics, the unenforceable Traditions carry a power greater than that of law. –“The Language of the Heart”, AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1960

We all know whose inventory we take in AA, right? –Manhattan, N.Y., May 1971/”Tradition Ten”

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The experience of reality does not have to be postponed. –“AA’s Steps Lead to Spiritual Awakening”, Hankins, N.Y., May 1967

I’m usually about eighty percent of the problem – well, maybe sixty percent, but the major part, you can bet on that.

If I can leave out the largest percent (me), there is hardly any problem at all! –“Growth,” Houston, TX, June 1976/Emotional Sobriety: The Next Frontier

AA may or may not get me to heaven, but it surely got me out of hell. –“Something Revolutionary,”/Nairobi, Kenya, April 1998

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The experience of reality does not have to be postponed. –“AA’s Steps Lead to Spiritual Awakening,”/Hankins, N.Y., May 1967

Because each of us, at any moment, is the sum total of every choice he or she has ever made, it is not sheer fantasy to expect each day to be the very best day we have yet lived. –“Savouring Our Sobriety,” North Hollywood, Calif., August 1982/Emotional Sobriety: The Next Frontier

If we examine every disturbance we have, great or small, we will find at the root of it some unhealthy dependency and its consequent unhealthy demand. Let us, with God’s help, continually surrender these hobbling liabilities. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1958/”The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety”

Sometimes we register surprise, shock, and anger when people find fault with AA. We are apt to be disturbed to such an extent that we cannot benefit from constructive criticism. This sort of resentment makes no friends and achieves no constructive purpose. Certainly, this is an area in which we can improve. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., July 1965/”Responsibility Is Our Theme”

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You never know until you go out to meet it what any given day is going to be, but the way you go to meet it surely makes a difference. –Quogue, N.Y., December 1963/”The Christmas Fighters,”

I have had to face my past, one episode at a time, and become willing to look at the truth. I could feel the pain and fear, like trolls under the bridge, waiting to jump out and challenge my self-esteem. –Cleveland, OH, February 1993/”Facing the Truth,”

The group I joined saved my life … For an hour, I was safe. For an hour, I had a haven among those whose fear had once been as great as my own. I did not give my fear away – they took it. They eased it from my grasp with hugs and laughter, with shared experience. –“The Scariest Thing”/Carlsbad, Calif., June 2006

Happiness is not a station we arrive at; it’s a way of traveling. –May 1953/”Short Takes”

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Happiness is not a station we arrive at; it’s a way of traveling. –May 1953/”Short Takes”

The best way to appreciate AA is the same way you appreciate a stained-glass window: Look at it from the inside –Grand Rapids, Mich., October 1981/”Meetings, Meetings, Meetings”

When I was drinking, I was afraid I was not achieving my potential. Now that I’m sober, I worry that maybe I am. –Grand Rapids, Mich., October 1981/”Meetings, Meetings, Meetings”

Let us not be afraid of unsettling or boring our comrades by talking about our reactions to whatever is bothering us at a given moment; for this is how we learn to live. –Saratoga, Calif., August 1985/”Beyond the Generation Gap”

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My Higher Power works incognito, defying definition and requiring faith. –“Working Incognito,” State College, Pa., April 1994

Each night, I think of the Tenth Step and ask myself, ‘Have I, this day, helped more than I’ve harmed? Given more than I’ve taken? Created more than I’ve destroyed?’ –“It Takes Practice to Be Human,” Minn., December 1977

Tolerance … promotes an open-mindedness that is vastly important — is, in fact, a prerequisite to the successful termination of any line of search, whether it be scientific or spiritual. –AA Co-founder Dr. Bob S., July 1944/”On Cultivating Tolerance”

I pray that I will stay humble and not forget that I am just a drunk, sober today through the grace of God and the program of AA. –Aurora, Ill., August 1992/”Just a Drunk”

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Open-mindedness seems to me a core spiritual principle of the program … Without it I cannot change. –San Francisco, Calif., August 1995/”Practical Enlightenment”

Times change, alcoholism doesn’t. –Marysville, Washington, September 2001

Whether I conceive of God as a set of immutable cosmic laws or as an old man with a white robe and matching beard is totally and gloriously irrelevant. All that matters are my values and attitudes and how I act upon them. –Culver City, Calif., May 1977/”Faith Is Action”

It has been the actions of others that has given me unfailing support throughout my sobriety. It also shows how I am to respond to those whom I can help. I am responsible to see that the hand of AA is available to anyone. –Moreno Valley, Calif.,, December 19924/”Nobody’s Sweetheart”

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It isn’t possible for all of us to be loners. –Lake Worth, Fla., June 1999/”The Light in the Window”

The simplicity of this program never changes – what works is constant: Trust in God, Clean house, and Work with others. –Grapevine: Concord, CA; 1997

In
AA’s Eleventh Step I find that I build today the road I travel tomorrow. –Binghamton, N.Y., April 1968/”The Old Fear Had To Go”

It isn’t possible for all of us to be loners. –Lake Worth, Fla., June 1999/”The Light in the Window”

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We’ve resolved never to allow either money or the management of our necessary affairs to obscure our spiritual aims. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., November 1950/”AA Is Not Big Business”

The emotional balance that eluded me is returning with prayer. –Seattle, Wash., April 1974/”Prayer” – Spiritual Awakenings

The whole world became mine when I had nowhere else to go. –Brick Town, N.J., January 1977 – “Because One Man Was Lonely,”, AA Grapevine

‘Yes, we AAs were once a burden on everybody. We were “takers.” Now that we are sober, and by the grace of God have become responsible citizens of the world, why shouldn’t we now about-face and become ‘thankful givers’! Yes, it is high time we did!” –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., June 1948/”Tradition Seven”

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My prayers are usually brief and to the point. ‘Help!’ is one I use often. –U.S.A., November 1991/”Trusting the Silence”

I know that I am not a total loss, even when I think I am. I know that freedom and usefulness, love, outgoingness and sharing are the important things in life. –New Canaan, Conn., April 1976/”Just Keep On Going”

I know that I will never be sober long enough to be alcohol-proof. –Iowa City, IA, August 2012/”Back from Haiti”

After so many years of being a hazard, a public nuisance at best, I feel obliged to do something positive. –Nipawin, Saskatchewan, November 2003/”Nobody’s Fault but Mine”

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There is always grace for the days I’m helpless. –Allyn, Wash., February 1997/”Another Hand to Help Me Along”

I went to Paris when I was young to become an artist. I wanted to be rich and famous, but God had another plan. I’m neither rich nor famous. Instead, I got sober. –New York, August 2012/”Thanks America!

Don’t wait till you’re depressed to practice gratitude. –New Canaan, Conn., September 1979/”Gratitude”

If you want to stop drinking AA doesn’t care whether you are a Christian, a Buddhist, a Jew, a Mohammedan, an atheist, an agnostic, or whatever. The door to AA is wide. Come right in. –Tulsa, Okla., April 1988/”You’re Welcome Here”

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Until I understood and accepted my status as a human being, my effort toward seeking God was in vain. –Nanaimo, British Columbia, February 2003. ‘My Name Is Gary and I’m a Human Being,’, Spiritual Awakenings

Living sober is not all roses all the time. But the cool thing is, when I am nervous, it is OK. I do not have to drink to fix it. It is the same with being sad, worried or afraid. –Elkton, Md., August 2012/”Then Came Susan and Dottie”

Thank God for all the wonderful people, professional and otherwise, who have helped me or tried to. Even when the help has not succeeded, it has kept me going, kept me trying. –New Canaan, Conn., April 1976/”Just Keep On Going”

The most important factor in eliminating resentments is to know you have them. You can’t fix something if you don’t know what’s wrong. –La Verne, Calif., December 1966/”Caught in Hateland”

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By 1937, some of us realized that AA needed a standard literature. There would have to be a book … Well, we did quarrel violently over the preparation and distribution of that book. In fact, it took five years for the clamour to die down. Should any AAs dream that the old-timers who put the book together went about in serene meditation and white robes, then they had best forget it. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., November 1951/”Services Make AA Tick”

There have been dark days where a will infinitely greater than my own has been responsible for my sobriety. –Dayton, OH, April 1962/”Ever Been on a Dry Drunk”

Happiness is a by-product – the extra dividend of giving without any demand for a return. –AA Co-Founder, Bill W., January 1958/”The Next Frontier: Emotional Sobriety”

When you’ve been lost, lonely, forgotten, rejected, it’s the most important thing in the world to have somebody shake your hand. –Santa Fe, N.M., May 1972/”How AA Works”

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Neither God nor AA can help us if we are not open to help. –Forest Hills, N.Y., January 1967/”Don’t Hide in AA”

I was, am, and always will be powerless over alcohol. My life was, is, and always will be unmanageable. Today, because I’m a recovering alcoholic, that’s okay. –Hartland, Wis., January 2009/”I Just Can’t Do This Anymore,” AA Grapevine

Believing that I was powerless ultimately reduced the size of my world — down to me in the moment. –Gainesville, Fla., September 1994/”Gateway to Freedom,”  Step By Step

Worrying about a situation won’t change it. I do all that I can and then give the rest to God. –Wallkill, N.Y., March 2007/”Step Three: From Sight to Insight,” Emotional Sobriety II/Grapevine

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The AA member has to conform to the principles of recovery.
His life actually depends upon obedience to spiritual principles.

If he deviates too far, the penalty is sure and swift; he sickens and dies. At first he goes along because he must, but later he discovers a way of life he really wants to live.

Moreover, he finds he cannot keep this priceless gift unless he gives it away.
AA Co-Founder, Bill W., April 1952 “Tradition One,”  The Language of the Heart/Grapevine

If the day comes that I do drink again, it will not be because I had no alternative. It will be because I had an alternative, provided by a loving God, but was unwilling to use it.
Syracuse, N.Y., October 1994 “Lock Me Up, Please,” / AA Grapevine

The sensation of fitting in for someone who has always felt like an outsider is an exquisitely rare feeling. — Salt Lake City, UT, January 2002/”My Heavenly Fit,”  Spiritual Awakenings II/Grapevine

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NB: Quotes are accredited and are ©Grapevine Inc. contributed by individual program members

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