Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas on August 28, 1952 · Page 7
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August 28, 1952

Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas · Page 7

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Fayetteville, Arkansas
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Thursday, August 28, 1952
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Page 7
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j)zark Alcoholics Anonymous Extends Helping Hand To All Drunks, But Can Aid Only Those Who Really Want To Quit By BILLY J1NES Ont of the most honest and humble groups of people in the Ozark area meets once a week in Fayetteville. No, it is not a clerical body, for the group is made up of nearly as many faiths as there are members, including both Protestant and Catholic. Neither is it an organization of skilled or professional men, for it includes skilled, professional and retired persons. Even the ages of the members range from the 20s to the 60s, and the membership is made up of both sexes: Yet honesty and humility is thi very keynote of this organization for its members make up the Ozark -group of Alcohollci Anonymous. As diversified as the membership is, all of them have one thing in common: Each one of them has fought alcohol for years; each o: them realize that without sobriety they have no future, no home, no family, and, sooner than their Registered Hereford Saturday Night, Aug. 30 Btginhing at 7 o'clock Farmers Livestock Sales Barn East Emma Avenue Springdale, Arkansas Cows with Calves at foot Polled Cattle;will be double Registered - Calves Sired By LARRY DOMINO No. 954 These cewi an from hefd'bf Jeste Engle'and Son, Alma, Ark., who told the lop calves, at last January 5 «al* hold h*ro. SM our show herds at Fort Smith and Little Reck show* Hilt fall, all sirtd by Larry Domino No. 945. ALSO ANOTHER OWNER WILL BE SELLING SOME POLLED REGISTERED BULLS AT THIS SALE -' Thit ul* lo b. held ItnnwdiaMr before the tegular Saturday night dairy talt. Saturday night. August 10th. Regular ·iH an htM ueh WMhusdar sterling at 1:00 P.M. and «ach Saturday night Stirling at 7:30. NOHTHVfW AMUWAS TIMB. tayeMvMe. ArfcMief, TlwrMhrr, AevMt M. IMI time, no life. There ,is only one requirement for in alcoholic to become a member of the Alcoholics Anonymous: He must be willing to admit that he is an alcoholic and have a sincere desire to stop drinking. Simple, isn't it, to those who are not alcoholic? Yet the ability to make 'such an admission is one of the roost difficult feats of an alcoholic's life. . For momns, then years, he has trained himself to think that one of these days he is going to quit drinking. Never once has he let himself think that he cannot quit alone. Many times, perhaps,-he has "quit", or had periods of sobriety which may have lasted weeks or even months. But t.e day always came when he-was off again probably drinking harder than ever before. He never admits he is powerless against alcohol until, as AA members put it, "he' hits his bottom.' That bottom (or level, or. crisis, if you · please) may come in several different forms: Mental, physical, financial, or, saddest of all, it may come in the grave. One thing is-certain: It will come, in some form. One member of the Ozark group can "describe with explicit horror the day he reached his bottom. Day after night after day his drunkenness had lasted. Gone were his wife and children. His friends were no more, neither his job nor money. Debts were everywhere; and a week's hotel bill was awaiting him if he tried to sneak from his room to replace the empty bottle at His bedsides Slowly he peeped from the covers, but whatever he wanted to find, he found instead that it was daylight again -- and it was his move. He was; hemmed in on every- side. Worst of all, he could not surrender,' for he did riot have the power within himself. lie wanted, is do ill alcoholics', to withdraw from'reallty-4there seemed to be only one escape, alcohol again; mt suddenly, 'that, too, had lost ts power to make escape possible. That w6s rft.jO. o'clock in .the morning. In one hand he clutched a ragged newspaper clipping listing the AA : telephone number in the great city in which he found himself. But it was 6 o'clock that evening before he finally won his day's struggle ' with himself and decided- to dial the number he when he left the city jail in Fayetteville:-- again -- and walked determinedly to the study of one of the city's laeding ministers. He hat) come to rcaize at last that It was not In his own .rower to quit i.....:....iK, uui no did not realize lhat the minister he was approaching for guidance was the one who has played the greatest role of all those in this section in leading alcoholics to the AA group located in This minister has often told the Ozark group, "I never felt butterflies in my stomach, but I try to imagine what it is like, to I can better understand you."- Such an understanding, combined with the acceptance by many that alcoholism is a disease rather than merely a habit, has helped that pastor and many other ministers of the area look .it alcoholics not with Ft-cra, lint with pity, in much the same way that cured alcoholics look ai most: who have not yet availed themselves of the great privilege of joining AA. Often on tne weekly meeting nights the AA members discuss other alcoholics whom they would like lo see cured of the malady. They wonder at the sheer stupidity of one who blunders on and on when he could so easily be freed of the entanglement binding his mind and body, lor-all the members agree that all that is necessary, actually, is clear thinking. held. Today after years without alcohol and with a life that's worth living, the man shudders when he stops to wonder at what his fate would have been had he not got in contact with the Alcoholics Anonymous the day he did. Another member.of the Ozark group discovered AA en a day Once one is thinking clearly he will see all the things he needs lo see: That he needs the help of a greater power than himself, that all along he has been making excuses for his drinking but that the only one he was fooling was himself; that he cannot drink like others: He must completely quit. In short, one AA member of the Ozark group terms it up by saying, "Knowledge Is power." Clear thinking gives one the knowledge he must have, thus ..placing the key that unlocks his-prison right in his'own hand. - Some members of the Ozark group of AA were once so-called "social drinkers.". One member drank for 34 years before being cured by the program offered by AA. He estimates that for 25 years of that time he was a social drinker. Others, called primary alcoholics, became alcoholics with the first drink they ever took. All the members agree, however, . that once in the stage of alcoholism, a man cannot stop drinking by himself: He must have a power higher than himself to help him. So we come to the AA itself and how it works. Actually, it offers no "treatment." It cannot supply the "dozen AA pills" that the wife of-one alcoholic tried to buy. It offers instead a way of life, Offer ii-the word, for A A extends its invitation to all alcoholics regardless of race, creed, financial condition, age, ex or position. In a seme, the AA throws a lifebelt toward the alcoholic, but he must reach for it himself. Without such a stand, the AA would miss the point of its existence and be an utter failure: (keep in mind that the alcoholic must,meet only the sole qualification of sincerely desiring to stop drinking which he realizes he cannot do alone). Once an alcoholic has made such a decision, he contacts a member of the AA or someone who knows an AA member to call. He is not voted on at the next meeting or met in a day or two by a committee: Some member of the AA goes to him immediately. The members realize that an hour's delay may mean the sinking back into the waters of alcoholism for that person. They will slay near him, walk with him, eat with him, drive with him, or play golf with him, anything they can do lo help him past the crisis in his great temptation to drink again. Convinced that the alcoholic Is ready and earnest in his desire to quit drinking, he Is given the 12 point program used by the AA all over the world. It consists of the following steps: 1. We admit we were powerless over alcohol--that our lives had become unmanageable. 2. Came to believe that a power i greater than ourselves could res-' tore us to sanity. 3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God a; we understood Him. 4. Made a searching and fearless inventory of ourselves. 5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs. t. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects character. 7. Humbly ask Him to remove our shortcomings. 8. Made a list of all persons « had harmed, and became wlllin to make amends, to them all. 9. Made direct amends to sue people wherever possible, exec when to do so would injure the or others. 10. Continued to take person inventory and when we wer wrong promptly admitted it. ,11. Sought through prayer an meditation 'to Improve our con scious contact with God as understood Him, praying knowledge of His will for us an the power to carry that out. 12. Having: had a spiritual awak ening as the result of these step FINAL DAYS ROOMER'S JEWELRY STORE STUPENDOUS LIQUIDATION SALE \i PHONE 21 41 E. CENTER WARD CAROL BRENT STYLE faOceJbn 7.98 «*jM»tol3 If* mart check it right for to many occailom. Kch ·Mian vefret tab and belt five it · more-far. ltt Tr ·H'tOlrOf·« Or fQTQIWM'OCAtft't* IM*. Smooth ite-fiM de** VALUE-PACTED CORDUROYS 1 JWnei', An exceptional group of fine plnwole corduroy Drone* that look to much more than Iheir low prke. Soft, feminine «Jetoifing. Many wMi full swing sVirti; rich ton MM, W| Boawb. Sliei 9 to 15, 12 le Ik) we tried to carry this message t alcoholics and to practice thes principals in all our affairs. Designed By Alcoholics This 12-point program was de signed by and for alcoholics. : began as a discussion over a kit chehMible beti»r5en t*o alcohol ics .who had been considered in curable by their doctors and de veloped as 1he result of a flas revelation to one of the men as h lay on a hospital bed. Since tha day late in 1934, the program ha been taken by well over 130,OOC alcoholics to be found in 3,00i groups located in the Unitei :ates and 30 foreign countries. It is believed that two-thirds o! those taking the program have laid a foundation for. permanen sobriety as more than half hax had no relapse at all, despite the fact that many had been ci/ntid- crod incurable. Why do sotivj o: the members fail, to let the'pro- gram rid thtm of '.h*?ir alcoholism? probably, because they were not actually honest when they expressed the desire to quit drinking. Then, too, there is the alt- important factor that an ex-drinker's sobriety depends a great deal upon the help he gives others in their struggle to stop drinking Though, cured from drinking, or precisely, though having the knowledge and help now to refuse to drink, an alcoholic is never cured of the desire to drink. As long as he lives he will be only one drink away from a drunk again, for he has learned that the first drink is the one that does the damage. He can never again be a social, drinker. Something in his chemical composition causes that first drink to take on the proportion of a'phenomenal craving for alcohol. He can best steel himself against a first drink by giving of himself to his brother member if.he-sees .temptation rising high .above ^his power. For instance, one member of the Fayetteville group who lives In a neighboring town recently received a call from one of the other members right at his busiest time | of day. The other member was in dire need of someone to help him overcome his temptation to drink. The one who had been called had to lay, "Get someone else." By noon the next day, the member who refused to offer his help was wishing desperately he had gone to help, for In turn he found himself t the threshhold of alcoholism again. Someone who reads this will have sat by and watched the drama that is brought about by one alcoholic: The p a t i e n c e of his family, next' the tenseness, then the shame, in some cases, the onlooker saw a beautiful love turn itself into a smoldering and ugly hate. .Otheri who read it will huve been the target of all these emotions or the very one who ran the gauntlet and, like the 20 member! of the Ourk group of AA, over* ceme them all. Oddly enough, though, there may be one who will reed it, lay It down, and turn once more to the thing thit hit wrecked not only hit life but deeply scirred the lives of the ones he love* molt. tke TtoMtMr*. 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