To show other alcoholics precisely how we have recovered is the main purpose of this book.

It also indicated that strenuous work, one alcoholic with another, was vital to permanent recovery.

The fledgling society, which had been nameless, now began to be called Alcoholics Anonymous, from the title of its own book. The flying blind period ended and AA entered a new phase of its pioneering time.

New groups started up and it was found, to the astonishment of everyone, that AA's message could be transmitted in the mail as well as by word-of-mouth.

The mushrooming process was in full swing. AA had become a national institution.

We had to unify our Fellowship or pass off the scene.

Of alcoholics who came to AA and really tried, 50% got sober at once and remained that way; 25% sobered up after some relapses…

Upon therapy for the alcoholic himself, we surely have no monopoly. Yet it is our great hope that all those who have as yet found no answer...will presently join us on the high road to a new freedom.

Each day, somewhere in the world, recovery begins when one alcoholic talks with another alcoholic, sharing experience, strength and hope.

As part of his rehabilitation he commenced to present his conceptions to other alcoholics, impressing upon them that they must do likewise with still others.

The body of the alcoholic is quite as abnormal as his mind.

... we are sure that our bodies were sickened as well.

We doctors have realized for a long time that some form of moral psychology was of urgent importance to alcoholics, but it's application presented difficulties beyond our conception.

We believe... that the action of alcohol on these chronic alcoholics is a manifestation of an allergy; that the phenomenon of craving is limited to this class and never occurs in the average temperate drinker.

...once having formed the habit and found they cannot break it, once having lost their self-confidence, their reliance upon things human, their problems pile up on them and become astonishingly difficult to solve.

In nearly all cases, their ideals must be grounded in a power greater than themselves, if they are to re-create their lives.

… let them stand with us a while on the firing line, see the tragedies, despairing wives, the little children...

They are restless, irritable and discontented, unless they can again experience the sense of ease and comfort which comes at once by taking a few drinks – drinks which they see others taking with impunity.

After they have succumbed to the desire again, as so many do, and the phenomenon of craving develops, they pass through the well-known stages of a spree, emerging remorseful, with a firm resolution not to drink again.

This is repeated over and over, and unless this person can experience an entire psychic change, there is very little hope of his recovery.

One feels that something more than human power is needed to produce the essential psychic change.

These men were not drinking to escape, they were drinking to overcome a craving beyond their mental control.

This phenomenon, as we have suggested, may be the manifestation of an allergy which differentiates these people, and sets them apart as a distinct entity.