Self Expression Magazine

Is AA a Cult? Read What the Experts Say.

Posted on the 15 March 2012 by 3stepstorecovery @3StepsToRecvry
Eighteen years ago, I entered a 30-day inpatient rehab treatment center. While there, we were forced to either accept AA and the 12 Steps as our one and only savior, or pack our things and leave. The excuses we were given for the ultimatum were that anyone that refused to find a sponsor and "get with the AA program" was "doomed to relapse" and disruptive to those that "wanted help". My counselor decided I was that type of trouble-making malcontent and ordered me to pack my bags and go on the 27th day of a 30 day stay. Not privately, mind you, but in front of the entire group, in order to use me as the poster boy for what happens to anyone that dared to think outside the AA box. 
I'd made the mistake of sharing my reluctance to attend life-long meetings, refusing to believe I would always be a "forever recovering" victim of an "incurable disease". The concept sounded fishy to me then and still does today, nearly two decades later. However, we were forced to attend three mandatory AA meetings while there. The first meeting not only cemented my suspicions about the cult-like atmosphere I'd anticipated, but deepened my convictions. Although I embraced the principles behind the 12 Steps wholeheartedly, AA meetings never were going to become a part of my recovery. To each his or her own, of course, but the meetings I did attend reeked of mind control techniques. I ran for the door, never looked back, and it was a decision I've never regretted, even once.
I ran across an interesting article recently, entitled Is Alcoholics Anonymous a Cult? An Old Question Revisited, by L. Allen Ragels. 
Have you ever wondered if AA is, indeed, guilty of using brainwashing techniques and other mind control tactics that could only be described as cult-like? I'll let you be the judge. Click here to read the article and decide for yourself. 

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