Tradition 9

"N.A. as such ought never be organized, but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve."

This Tradition defines the way our Fellowship functions. We must first understand what N.A. is. Narcotics Anonymous is addicts who have the desire to stop using, and have joined together to do so. Our meetings are a gathering of members for the purpose of staying clean and carrying the message of recovery. Our Steps and Traditions are set down in a specific order. They are numbered, not random and unstructured. They are organized, but this is not the type or organization referred to in the Ninth Tradition. For the purpose of this Tradition, "organized" means having management and control. On this basis, the meaning of Tradition Nine is clear. Without this Tradition,, our Fellowship would be in opposition to spiritual principles. A loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience is our ultimate authority.

The Ninth Tradition goes on to define the nature of the things that we can do to help N.A. It says that we may create service boards or committees to serve the needs of the Fellowship. None of them has the power to rule, censor, decide, or dictate. They exist solely to serve the Fellowship, but they are not a part of Narcotics Anonymous. This is the nature of our service structure as it has evolved and been defined in the N.A. service manual. 1