“Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our Traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities. “

We of Alcoholics Anonymous believe that the principle of Anonymity has an immense spiritual significance.” (Big Book)

“Anonymity, as we observe it in AA, is at root a simple expression of humility.

When we use the Twelve Steps to recover from alcoholism, we are each trying to achieve real humility, to put our self respect on a solid basis of truth, rather than on fantasies about ourselves. When we use the Twelve Traditions to work together in AA, we are all trying to achieve real humility; as individual members, by recognizing our true place in AA, as a fellowship by recognising AA’s true place in the world.” (The Twelve Traditions Illus.)

Our co-founder, Bill W. said “Our Traditions are a guide to better ways of working and living. And they are to group survival what AA’s Twelve Steps are to each individual member’s sobriety and peace of mind. Most individuals cannot recover unless there is a group. The group must survive or the individual will not.”

“As Tradition Twelve reminds us, we have something stronger than our human personalities to rely on. Our principles come first – and they are not our own invention. They reflect eternal spiritual values, with this Tradition, both as individuals and as a fellowship, we humbly acknowledge our dependence on a Power higher than ourselves.” (The Twelve Traditions Illustrated)

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Related Reading:

Alcoholics Anonymous: The Story of How Many Thousands of Men and Women Have Recovered from Alcoholism/Third Edition
Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book Workbook: Working the Program
Humility: A Forgotten Virtue (Strength for Life)
Real Twelve Step Fellowship History