The 12 Traditions
of Narcotics Anonymous
We keep what
we have only with vigilance, and just as freedom for the individual
comes from the Twelve Steps, so freedom for the group springs from
our traditions. As long as the ties that bind us together are stronger
than those that would tear us apart, all will be well.
1. Our common
welfare should come first; personal recovery depends on NA unity
2. For our
group purpose there is but one ultimate authority—a loving God as
He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but
trusted servants, they do not govern.
3. The only
requirement for membership is a desire to stop using.
4. Each group
should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or NA
as a whole.
5. Each group
has but one primary purpose—to carry the message to the addict who
6. An NA
group ought never endorse, finance, or lend the NA name to any related
facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property,
or prestige divert us from our primary purpose.
NA group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.
Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers
may employ special workers.
9. NA, as
such, ought never be organized, but we may create service boards or
committees directly responsible to those they serve.
Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the NA name ought
never be drawn into public controversy.
11. Our public
relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we
need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio,
is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding
us to place principles before personalities.
these Traditions comes slowly over a period of time. We pick up information
as we talk to members and visit various groups. It usually isn’t until
we get involved with service that someone points out that “personal
recovery depends on N.A. unity,” and that unity depends on how well
we follow our Traditions. The Twelve Traditions of N.A. are not negotiable.
They are the guidelines that keep our Fellowship alive and free.
these guidelines in our dealings with others, and society at large,
we avoid many problems. That is not to say that our Traditions eliminate
all problems. We still have to face difficulties as they arise: communication
problems, differences of opinion, internal controversies, and troubles
with individuals and groups outside the Fellowship. However, when
we apply these principles, we avoid some of the pitfalls.
Many of our
problems are like those that our predecessors had to face. Their hard
won experience gave birth to the Traditions, and our own experience
has shown that these principles are just as valid today as they were
when these Traditions were formulated. Our Traditions protect us from
the internal and external forces that could destroy us. They are truly
the ties that bind us together. It is only through understanding and
application that they work.
and Twelve Traditions
for adaptation by permission of AA World Services, Inc.