Marijuana Anonymous (MA)

Definition - What does Marijuana Anonymous (MA) mean?

Marijuana Anonymous (MA) is a non-profit organization that models itself after Alcoholics Anonymous, or AA. It is a fellowship of people all with the aim to recover from marijuana addiction.

Founded in 1989, MA is based on the 12 Steps of Recovery program founded by AA creators. The goal of Marijuana Anonymous is to help people overcome their addiction to marijuana by conducting regular meetings and annual conventions.

The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop using marijuana. In other words, it's free to join Marijuana Anonymous. MA is not affiliated with any religious or secular institution or organization; however, the literature of the 12 steps alludes to a 'higher power'.

Hydrolife explains Marijuana Anonymous (MA)

Based on literature from MA, a marijuana addict is someone who loses interest in all else. "Ours is a progressive illness often leading us to addictions to other drugs, including alcohol. Our lives, our thinking, and our desires center around marijuana—scoring it, dealing it, and finding ways to stay high," states their website.

A 12-point questionnaire is provided by Marijuana Anonymous to help people ponder if they have an addiction to marijuana. Among the questionnaire are questions like:

  1. Has smoking pot stopped being fun?
  2. Do you ever get high alone?
  3. Is it hard for you to imagine a life without marijuana?

The organization does not use scare tactics to motivate membership, does not cite the dangers of marijuana use, and does not outright condemn it. Rather, Marijuana Anonymous is simply a platform for supporting people with their addiction. They do not take an official stance on legalization or the science behind the substance.

Once people join Marijuana Anonymous, they are encouraged to follow the 12 steps, which involve admitting you having a problem, asking for help from a higher power, and apologizing to people who you have harmed while high.

Much like AA, MA consists of local chapters in North America, and is based on the concept of members finding sponsors among each other and adhering to the 12 steps. Resources in the form of pamphlets and books are also available, in addition to the organization's recent smartphone app. The organization's official publications are A New Leaf, which is their monthly newsletter, and the book Life With Hope: A Return to Living Through the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of Marijuana Anonymous.

The loved ones of people attending Marijuana Anonymous meetings are also given a wide variety of supportive literature and guidance.

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