1. In R.A.'s Multilith Big Book, on page 34, we are now at the next to last paragraph. This is read after the hour of quiet and reflection:
"If you can answer to your satisfaction, look at step six. We have emphasized willingness as being indispensable. Are you now perfectly willing to let God remove from you all the things which you have admitted are objectionable? Can He now take them all—every one? If you yet cling to something you will not let go, ask God to help you be willing."
2. Someone does not have to be perfectly willing right now. Later, in Part 2 of R.A.'s Step Presentation we will formally go through the Sixth Step. When someone goes through that part of this process, by God's grace, they will be willing.
3. Let's look at this passage. It is not asking someone to solve his or her own problems. It is not asking someone to control his or her own behaviors. It doesn't do that.
4. This passage is still talking about character defects. It is talking about the same character defects that someone found in their inventory. These are the same character defects that they admitted to God, to themselves, and to another human being are now objectionable.
5. This passage is asking if someone is willing to let God remove their character defects, instead of trying to remove them on his or her own. We want to share an example of this difference. Let's say someone is holding a book in his or her hand. If they were told they had to put that book down, first they'd need the willingness to put the book down. Then they would have to take the action of putting the book down. This can be a very complicated process in the scheme of things.
6. On the other hand if someone is told that they simply have to be willing to let go of the book, then they really have to do nothing except relax and let someone take the book out of their hand. See how much simpler that is?
7. And that's all this is asking. That someone be willing to let God remove the character defects found and have already admitted are objectionable, as they followed the pioneers' "clear-cut directions" for the Fourth Step and Fifth Step. At this point, the things that someone doesn't admit are objectionable are not being addressed.
8. So if there are still some character defects someone doesn't see as objectionable, they shouldn't worry about them right now. This is only dealing with the character defects someone has already admitted are objectionable. If someone still clings to some character defects, then the pioneers give "clear-cut directions" to pray to God for the willingness to let go of them.
9. Notice that the pioneers do not tell someone to pray for the power to solve their own problems, or to control their own behavior.
10. Remember, we read earlier in this process that no real alcoholic ever recovers control. Therefore, all someone needs at this point is a simple willingness to let God remove the character defects they've already admitted are objectionable. In this paragraph, the pioneers give a specific process, a simple process to do this.
11. There are people in other programs who say that someone should only take one step a year. They believe this is necessary because they mistakenly think that taking each step is very difficult and complicated. If this were true, the pioneers' "clear-cut directions" for each step would have to be far longer.
12. In R.A., we believe this paragraph make it clear that this was not the pioneers' original intention. This one paragraph is the entire discussion of Step Six in the Big Book. That's how simple the pioneers made it.
Please use R.A.'s Questions and Answers Forum to ask any questions or make any comments about any of this.