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May 27, 2008


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I've thought about this one for a long time and come to the following conclusion regarding defects of character vs. shortcomings:

Bill Wilson was many things, but he was nothing if not an exceptional writer. The language of the Big Book can sound rather quaint today, but that isn't because of the writing; it's because it's OLD. Bill really knew his way around the English language, and because of this I'm convinced that "defects of character" and "shortcomings," as used in Steps 6 and 7, are really two ways of saying the same thing.

I think it would have bothered Bill immensely to use the same term twice so close together. I'm a sometime writer, and I know that's just the sort of thing that comes up for me all the time. I can just picture Bill sitting at a typewriter looking puzzled, then consulting the thesaurus for just the proper term.

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