From the September 1991 magazine.

A Beacon in the Dark

The power of our primary purpose

The first time I sneaked my fearful, bewildered self into an AA meeting, I was struck by the seriousness and singlemindedness of the meeting and its participants. The meeting was a somber, pain-filled beginners meeting. These were the first real alcoholics I had ever seen, and unsure whether I belonged there, I listened for weeks until I found that their pain and bewilderment was the same as mine. But mostly I remember my astonishment as I compared these meetings to the committee meetings I had become accustomed to in my outside life.

I was used to free-wheeling discussions, often...

-- Nadene S.

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania