I'd like to offer a non-higher power version of the 12 steps. The version I have written is godless and instead focuses on personal accountability over 'the devil made me do it' excuses. It worked for me, and I am alone in my efforts in a den of drug users.


Your input would be welcomed, pro of con; so long as you come with an open mind and intelligent response. 



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Impressive, JD. I'm not an addict, but here in Hollywood most of the people I know are in AA/NA and you managed to address every problem I've had with the 12-step program.
I was encourage to attend a group meeting for depression. The only thing available in my 'hood is a 12-step program.
Step 1. We admitted we were powerless over our emotions - who am I, Bruce Banner? Hulk sad. Hulk hide in bed under covers. C'mon, I may feel like crap, but that doesn't mean I can't control my reactions to my emotions.
Step 2. Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity. - I'm not insane, I'm just depressed. If anything, as an atheist, believing in a higher power might make me insane.
Your version, however, would work for me. Thanks so much for taking the time to share it.

Thank YOU for enjoying it. I'm trying to come up as a writer so if you see something you like on my profile: share share share! XD

Also, I'm easily found on facebook if you want to talk or chop it up. I've been an atheist for a long time. I've only recently become an 'enthusiastic' atheist. 



I am also a decent councilor. :P
I mention in the article that I don't condemn the 'holy' salvation, but I will call it for what it is: self-delusional. I don't condemn faith until it turns destructive. Otherwise, I think people should believe whatever they want to get through it. For the rest of us, though... the people who can't grasp wildly at the intangible: I offer an alternative answer.

I do believe that if you take a good idea, no matter where you got it, and make it as universal as possible... that idea becomes impervious to corruption. I hope my effort gets that ball rolling for addicts. I feel getting clean is more relevant that getting faith or God.
Thanks for the input.
I'm all for this. I would love to help.
Kris. Here's a good video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fv24kUI7Ozg

Penn and Teller did a great episode a few years ago about this. I'll try to crop it and post it for everyone.
I appreciate any assistance in getting this rolling... even suggesting improvement if needed... I am leaving one bit of criteria in this task though: it must exclude as few people and beliefs as possible- Christians, Atheists, Materialists, Buddhists, Satanists... everyone.

...except Nihilists. Their very name is a contradiction. You have to believe in something (love, pleasure, kicking puppies, whatever) to continue to live. And attempting to make all into nothing is not "believing in nothing", its believing everything should be nothing. The moment you acknowledge reality, mission failed. Make a like-minded nihilist friend? Mission failed, you believe in companionship... even if to string it along to mutually assured destruction.

(wow... what a rant) Sorry about that. Anyways... any help in helping others would be most appreciated.

Beautifully written. I have read the twelve step program only once before when a friend of mine brought all the booklets and junk home. I wasn't happy about how they made it seem like the person addicted was a powerless slave to the drugs and how giving themselves to a higher power would save them. Credit goes to god and the abuser is still powerless because they never gained faith they needed in themselves, just faith in god. So when god isn't there and something happens, they just go right back to the drug.

I counseled my friend along the lines that I of what you shared and with good friends and a stronger backbone she got better without the program. At the time I with she had read your 12 steps because I know it would have been way better then my "preaching". 

Your an awesome person for writing this.

Thank you kindly. I plan on writing more on addiction as time progresses. Need to knock out a few assignments first.
Another resource to check out is Secular Organization for Sobriety

I have limited time, and was unable to read it all.  I liked what I saw!  I once participated in AA, and maybe should again (beer being my main issue), but I could never connect there because of the heavy reliance on the christian God.  I have looked over the years for support groups with a secular approach.  They hardly exist.  There are some, but very few.  Keep up the good work!

I can understand how the word "clean" implies that you were once "dirty"... but for that reason I actually think the word is more effective and accurate. When I'm on drugs, I am polluting my system and thus, 'dirty' seems very appropriate. I feel like to some point, addicts and addiction are given the "there, there... it's okay" treatment and in my humble opinion, that is one of the most damaging responses I was ever given. My friends decided it was okay that I did drugs, and people around me would tell me I should do whatever I want. With that, there really wasn't anything that would hold me back. Part of why the original incarnation of the 12 step program doesn't work so often (also in my opinion) is the constant lack of accountability in people using and deflecting of that use to being the power and control of someone other than themselves. The framework of the 12 steps is just fine, its the principles that are broken. That is what led me to rewrite the program to better manage personal responsibility and not leave people the answer "you will get there when you get there" or my personal favorite: "fake it 'til you make it".  Now, the only one you have the option to lie to is yourself and that option is no longer viable the moment you are actually honest with yourself and say "I am an addict." Once you tell yourself that, it is no longer a matter of 'do I have a problem' and more 'am I going to solve it or continue to fail'. 

Harsh words... but in reality, it is ourselves to blame and no one else.


On a side note, I spent a stretch of time locked up. This ideal I have is a translation of my conflict I have with prisoners getting so many luxuries and having them pawned off as "rights". It's the reason the prison system in its current incarnation is broken and doesn't work. I feel the same is true for treating and understanding addiction. I screwed up. I took the drug. I became a wreck. It is my responsibility to straighten up or suffer the consequences. 


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