The Secular 12 Step Program (draft 1)

1. I admit I am powerless over my flaws — that my life has become unmanageable.

2. I believe that releasing my ownership and self-reproach of the problem is the key to my sanity.

3. I have decided to turn my life over to the inner voice of my Ideal Self, and to let this voice guide me.

4. I have decided to make a searching and fearless inventory of myself.

5. I have decided to admit fully and honestly to myself and another human being the exact nature of my wrongs.

6. I am entirely ready to have my defects of character removed.

7. I ask the inner voice of my Ideal Self for guidance to help me remove my shortcomings.

8. I will make a list of all persons I have harmed, and become willing to make amends to all of them.

9. I will make direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

10. I will continue to take personal inventory and when I was wrong, I will promptly admit fault.

11. I will seek through meditation to improve my ability to hear my inner voice, seeking for wisdom, and for strength to act it out.

12. Seeing the light because of these steps, I will try to carry these messages to others, and to practice these principles in all my affairs.

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5 thoughts on “The Secular 12 Step Program (draft 1)

  1. Can you explain to me how step 2 works? Do I just lose my “drama producing behavior” around the problem or something else I am not getting?Thank you, FD

  2. This, sir, is impressive. My one concern would be with step one – this seems to be about addressing our own flaws and dealing with them – if we are powerless over them, how is step six going to work?

  3. Draft 21. I admit I am flawless.2. I believe that releasing my sanity is the key to releasing self-reproach.3. I have decided to listen to the voices in my head.4. I have decided to make a thorough inventory of my closet.5. I have decided to admit fully to my neighbor the exact level of hatred I hold toward his dog.6. I am entirely ready to have my defects of character celebrated.7. I ask the voices in my head for guidance to help me identify my bizarre impulses.8. I will make a list of all persons I have harmed, and I will seek for more names to add to the list.9. I will make direct approaches to such people wherever possible, especially when to do so will injure or frighten them.10. I will continue to take personal inventory of my closet, and I will promptly shop for new shoes as often as necessary.11. I will seek through floating in the bathtub to improve my ability to hear my inner voices, seeking for weird impulses, and for the strength to act them out.12. Seeing the light because of the open living room window, I will try to carry these messages to others, and to practice these principles in all my affairs, so that all may suffer as much as I have, and will give me a very wide berth when encountering me in public.

  4. Mykyl and FD: Step 1 of the original twelve step program involves admitting that you’re life is unmanageable. In step 2 you say tha you need to take the ownership and the guilt off your shoulders…that the guilt is actually making your behavior worse. This is done so that in step 3, (in the original), all responsibility is turned over to God to manage. There is tremendous power and relief in this transfer of ownership. It is this transfer that makes the 12 steps successful in so many cases.Therefore, the same concept must apply in a secular version. We, our conscious selves, are essentially powerless. So, rather than God, ownership is transfered to something that is beyond our conscious control: the inner voice…our sense of right and wrong. It essentially takes away control from ourselves and gives it to a “higher” self.Princess: There is something quite inspirational about your version. It has a fresh perspective. It is with no small degree of reluctance that I will nevertheless completely ignore it. I will treasure it always, though. 🙂

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