But again we are driven on by the inescapable conclusion which we draw from A. A. experience, that we surely must try with a will, or else fall by the wayside. At this stage of our progress we are under heavy pressure and coercion to do the right thing. We are obliged to choose between the pains of trying and the certain penalties of failing to do so. These initial steps along the road are taken grudgingly, yet we do take them. We may still have no very high opinion of humility as a desirable personal virtue, but we do recognize it as a necessary aid to our survival.
So often, when I read these things, I picture Bill W and other older men. There was a time when I would have called them old men, but old keeps getting older all the time, if you know what I mean. Anyway I picture these older, professional, neat and tidy down on their luck alcoholics, having to get sober and having, darn it, to accept humility as part of it. It just seems odd.
Yes, we all had to get humble in order to survive. Failing to ask for help and failure to follow directions has awful consequences. Those of us who are fortunate enough to make it to the other side of a period of lengthy sobriety can look back and see what in our attitude made the difference and what others need to do to follow this path.