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Always Get Better   

Ethics Are More Important in Chemical Health Treatment than Spirituality

Conventional CD/Addiction Treatment promotes/indoctrinates patients in a disguised version of fundamentalist Christianity (AA). EVERY person who has viewed the 12 Step program of AA knows full well that participants are subtly and overtly coerced into reciting Christian prayer, adopting a peculiar version of a Christian God, born-again' renewals, classic fundamentalist type confessionals and a reliance on redemption, living thru worship of and capitulation to a Higher Power.

1. Are prayers ever appropriate in Treatment? Certainly not the type of public coerced prayers used in AA and conventional Treatment. Private and personal prayers, meditations and reflections are always appropriate.

2. Is a belief in a Christian God essential to overcome chemical health problems? Absolutely not.

3. Is a 'born again renewal' essential to change/recovery? No.

4. Are confessionals to a member of a religious order needed to change/overcome chemical health and addiction problems? Absolutely not.

5. In order to recover, is it necessary to live thru worship and turning over one's life to a Higher Power? No.

Keith Humphries, a research professor of psychiatry and behavior sciences at Stanford University, said that for some people, however, spirituality is necessary.

"A lot of AA people have been through experiences that were scarring to their person or their values, like they stole from their employer or passed out drunk at their kid's birthday party," he said. "They feel ashamed for the people they've hurt and want to make it up. That's a spiritual process, admitting what you've done wrong and atoning. For a lot of people to feel fully recovered, that part is pretty important."

We respectfully disagree. Admitting you are wrong is an ETHICAL PROCESS not a spiritual process. A learned research professor should know better. Admitting you are wrong, that you have done wrong and that you need to apologize/atone is A COMMON AND NECESSARY HUMAN ACTIVITY that makes the world go around. It can certainly be painful, difficult - even gut wrenching to acknowledge we have been terribly wrong - but this is not a 'spiritual process' - it is a psychological one. Pretending that admitting to wrongs is a spiritual process is part of the phony, mistaken and arrogant activity of AA and conventional Treatment.

And this is likely the #1 reason why VAST NUMBERS of Americans stay away from Treatment.

It's time for a change.


A Clinic client expressed her frustration with the community saturation with discriminatory forms of 'spirituality'. "I go to AA meetings and express my own religious views and get told I'm wrong (but 'just keep coming back)'. I belong to a Unitarian Society and asked them to offer some Rational Recovery. SMART and Women For Sobriety meetings - they responded 'We' don't see the need for any alternatives - AA meetings here are just fine." What the heck is the matter with everyone these days. We complain about goofy/dangerous fundamentalist Muslims but seem completely unaware how intolerant the vast fundamentalist Christian community has become. These intolerant people need Treatment - but they never agree they need to change. They NEVER see themselves as doing something wrong - they have God on their side."   

Best National AA 

Alternative Sites

Dr. Stanton Peele, Ph.D


Rational Recovery

SMART Recovery

Women For Sobriety

Moderation Management