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DRA members are free to interpret and personalize the Twelve Steps in a way that will meet their own needs for dual recovery. Members are free to develop their own beliefs and lifestyles to support their dual recovery.

Spiritual Beliefs: Some members of DRA do incorporate spiritual or religious beliefs into their Twelve Steps. They may find that their concept of a Higher Power is one that is based on spiritual principles. They are comfortable with a more traditional approach to dual recovery that includes prayer and meditation.

Alternative Beliefs: Some members decide that alternative approaches are more appropriate for their dual recovery. They may be uncomfortable with spiritual principles or the practice of prayer and meditation.

There may be several reasons a DRA member chooses an alternative approach:

  • A DRA member may be agnostic or atheist. The concept of spiritual principles may not be compatible with their beliefs or world view.
  • A DRA member may have had negative religious experiences at some point in their lives.
  • A DRA member may have engaged in cult practices or engaged in extensive use of psychedelic drugs.
  • A DRA member may be affected by a psychiatric illness with symptoms that include auditory or visual hallucinations and thought disorders that are associated with religious or spiritual images and themes.

DRA members are free to develop and follow alternative approaches to the Twelve Step program. Their concept of a Higher Power may include any or all of the following:

  • The Twelve Steps
  • DRA meetings and the fellowship
  • Following a lifestyle of G.O.D. Good Orderly Direction
  • Plan for health (appropriate sleep, diet, exercise, use of psychiatric medications to manage symptoms)
  • Counseling and support

DRA members are free to choose and work with more than one Higher Power. DRA members are also free to change their concept of a Higher Power as time goes by.

Excerpts from the DRA Questions & Answers

DRA members are not limited to identifying a single source of help. There are many ways to define a higher or helping power. Some members use traditional religious beliefs and some don't. Members may consider their caseworker, counselor, sponsor, DRA group, and any other source of help they value, as their personal higher or helping power. DRA members do not judge how other's define higher power, spiritual experience, or spiritual awakening. These terms are subject to each person's individual concept and understanding. What is important is that members choose a higher or helping power that they trust as a personal source of help--a concept that makes at least some sense to them and that provides caring, positive support. 


Finally, although the literature of most Twelve Step organizations, including Dual Recovery Anonymous, includes the words "God" and "higher power" we recognize some people object to them or feel uncomfortable with those words. Feel free to substitute any terms that work for you in your personal program of recovery. DRA is not affiliated with any religion, nor does it have any opinion on the matter of a supreme being. Our program of dual recovery is based on the principles of personal freedom and choice.


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NOTE: For additional thoughts on this topic, read, "What if I don't believe in God?" one of our Fellowship Discussion Papers.

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