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Episode 210: Ben’s Friends

This episode features a conversation with Mickey Bakst from an organization called Ben’s Friends, which provides a forum for people in recovery who work in the food and beverage industry. Micky talks about the history behind the group’s founding and the special challenges facing food and beverage workers in recovery. You can learn more about Ben’s Friends at their website...

Episode 209: AJ

Meet AJ who helped start a secular AA meeting in New Jersey. In this episode, he talks about his early experiences with alcohol, his evolving thoughts on spirituality, the progressive nature of alcohol use disorder, and how he managed the AA program as an atheist. As we were talking, AJ related an anecdote about what he was thinking of saying to his ex-wife one morning when she was upset with him...

Episode 208: Ibby A.

Meet Ibby A.  who has been sober since November 30, 1996, and shares her story of recovery from trauma and addiction, and how she views her recovery through a secular lens. Key points discussed Childhood trauma. Geographical cures. Impact of defective relationships on addiction. The benefit of a self-appraisal. Repairing relationships with family. Early experiences with AA and white-knuckling it...

Episode 207: Secular AA Oz

Justin M. from Canberra provides an update on the progress of secular AA meetings in Australia and New Zealand and talks about his views on AA’s singleness of purpose. Key points discussed A brief history of secular AA meetings in Australia. How secular AA is closer to the founding principles of AA. A discussion about the singleness of purpose in AA. How COVID impacted secular AA meetings...

Episode 206: Rich L.

Rich L. is from Mountainview, California, and he helped start a secularly formatted AA meeting in his community. In this episode, he shares his personal story of recovery, how and why he started a secular AA meeting, and how things are going today for both him and his group. Key points discussed Growing up in an alcoholic home. Drinking makes Rich feel normal. Rich’s feeling about religion...

Episode 205: Brendan from Rainham Freethinkers

In this episode, I spoke with Brendan from the Rainham Freethinkers Group located in London, England. I met Brendan at the online International Conference of Secular AA where I was working behind the scenes and he was participating in the panel about The ‘God’ Word Pamphlet.  Brendan shares his story of recovery and his experience as a secular person in Alcoholics Anonymous. Key...

Episode 204: A Message for a New Year

Happy New Year, friends. I want to begin the year by writing to you about AA Beyond Belief. These last five years have gone by so fast. It’s been like a dream. I never imagined that I would ever have such an experience, but it’s been an incredible ride, and I am honored to have this opportunity to be of service. Thank you, Roger C., for making this possible in the first place. Of...

Episode 203: Secular Overeaters

In this episode, we meet Jenne M., and Jim D., both secular members of Overeaters Anonymous. We talk about their struggles with food addiction, the difficulty they experienced as atheists in OA, their experiences starting secular OA meetings, and their website secularovereaters.org. Topics Discussed Jim’s Story Jenne’s Story What makes a secular OA meeting, secular. Overcoming the...

Episode 202: Colette

Colette’s date of sobriety is December 23, 2006, and on the date of this posting, she is celebrating fourteen years sober. In this episode, she shares her journey as a person in recovery from anorexia, depression, and alcoholism. Her’s is an inspiring story and she does a great job describing her early struggles as well as the joy she has found in being sober.  Topics and key points...

Episode 201: Birds of a Feather

Marty B. is a recovering alcoholic and a retired airline pilot. He got sober in AA and after his first year of sobriety, another pilot introduced him to Birds of a Feather, a worldwide network of AA meetings established for airline pilots and cockpit crewmembers. In this episode, Marty describes the unique needs of pilots in recovery and how Birds of a Feather offers a helping hand.  Key points...