John Lauritsen.
A Freethinker in Alcoholics Anonymous.
Pagan Press 2014.

Reviewed by Caroline McCullagh, Page Turners Editor
Mensa Bulletin, June 2015

I've had two friends who refused to consider Alcoholics Anonymous because of the religious component. One said, “I just don't like this ‘higher power’ stuff.” That's why A Freethinker in Alcoholics Anonymous by John Lauritsen caught my eye.
    Nonbelievers have been part of AA since before its first organizational meeting in 1939. They worked to moderate the language about the place of God in the recovery process but were unable to eliminate it.
    Lauritsen, who has been a member and sober for more than 46 years, thinks that even this attenuated focus on God drives people away from the program they need. He has written this 120-page critique to see if he can create a discussion about what he sees as a serious problem. To critique it, he first has to describe it, so the reader will get a quick orientation to the history and methods of the organization.
    This book will probably be of interest to anyone who is in AA,and it also fits in with the contemporary discussion about the place of religion in America. 

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