In my recent interview with Darren LittleJohn the author of “The 12 Step Buddhist” we speak about his personal bouts with addiction as well as how he has learned to cope by utilizing his practices in the Buddhist philosophy.
Darren’s program is designed to augment the AA program, but is not intended to replace AA. His states that Buddhism isn’t a substitute for the 12 Steps. I don’t care how devout you are, whether your’ve meditated with the Dali Lama or had an audience with the pope states Darren. The book is his personal story, his critical analysis of treatment methods, and practical advice on how to integrate Buddhism with a 12-Step recovery program.
In our interview together Darren addresses the Buddhist concept of attachment. We’re all attached to something else: concepts. Our concepts form our identities, our selective, distorted memories, personalities, goals, dreams, complaints, and fears. And we love to have them. When we look at attachment from this angle, it’s obvious that we’re addicted to our thoughts. We’re willing to go to the mat for our right to believe them, especially the ones that we think define who we are.
The bigger questions we should really ask from a Buddhist perspective is ” Who are we?” When an addict ( or anyone for that matter) asks this question, he or she can really understand at a very deep level this concept of attachement. At this level of awareness we understand we are spiritual beings having a human experience, allowing us to let go of many of the addictions and attachements and this can be our awakening to a new life of sobriety.
If you are dealing with addiction and are looking to find alternative methods to supplement your current treatment program, then I would recommend reading Darren’s book “The 12-Step Buddhist“. Darrens’ book is a great guide to alternative practices such as meditation which can really have an effect on both the physical and spiritual aspects of addiction.
Please visit Darren’s website by clicking here for more information as well as informative video of Darren speaking about the practices of Buddhism and their positive effects on addiction.