While walking through the grocery store today I noticed a newspaper talking about the group Underearners Anonymous. I was dumbfounded... a support group specifically designed for people who habitually don't earn much? A collection of folks who are artists, aspiring actors/actresses, or generally incompetent? It is one of those things that made me shake my head and wonder what the world is coming to.
When I got home I checked out their website and found out that it isn't much like that at all. Rather it is a group designed to help people with a wide range of issues that prevent them from being economically comfortable that mainly seem to focus around self confidence and self worth. It talked about people who habitually asked too little for their services, gave away their time for no reason, etc. and ended up in bad situations. This sounds great! Having a place for people to discuss problems like this and try to find support and solutions seems like a good thing.
Just like Alcoholics Anonymous they have a 12 step program for recovery and the program mostly involves admitting helplessness and asking God to fix everything. I do like a few of the 12 steps like admitting to having a problem and trying to make amends with others hurt by the problem but most of the rest is rubbish. I have no use for God in pretty much any respect but there are definitely levels of dislike. Thinking that there is something beyond the realm of the physical that created everything and is benevolent? Mostly harmless. Thinking that there is a person of infinite power who can fix you but bases their decision to do so on either random chance or your participation in specific rituals and maintenance of particular beliefs? Preposterous and dangerous. If we sit around waiting for God to fix our problems we will be waiting a long damn time; we have to do it ourselves.
Note that I don't think that AA or UA for that matter is an evil organization. I expect they do good things overall but they could do those things without all the religious baggage.