During its first decade, A.A. as a fellowship accumulated
substantial experience which indicated that certain
attitudes and principles were particularly valuable in
assuring survival of the informal structure of
1946, in the Fellowship's international journal, the A.A.
Grapevine, these principles were reduced to writing by
the founders and early members as the Twelve Traditions
of Alcoholics Anonymous. They were accepted and endorsed
by the membership as a whole at the International Convention
of A.A., at Cleveland, Ohio, in 1950.
- Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery
depends upon A.A. unity.
- For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority
- a loving God as He may express Himself in our group
conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants, they
do not govern.
- The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire
to stop drinking.
- Each group should be autonomous except in matters
affecting other groups or A.A. as a whole.
- Each group has but one primary purpose - to carry
its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.
- An A.A. group ought never endorse, finance or lend
the A.A. name to any related facility or outside enterprise,
lest problems of money, property and prestige divert
us from our primary purpose.
- Every A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting
declining outside contributions.
- Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional,
but our service centers may employ special workers.
- A.A., as such, ought never be organized; but we may
create service boards or committees directly responsible
to those they serve.
- Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues;
hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public
- Our public relations policy is based on attraction
rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal
anonymity at the level of press, radio and films.
- Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions,
ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.
the Twelve Traditions are not specifically binding on
any group or groups, an overwhelming majority of members
have adopted them as the basis for A.A.'s expanding "internal"
and public relationships.
Reprinted from The Big
Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, with the permission of A.A.
World Services, Inc.