One Breath at a Time: Buddhism and the Twelve Steps

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Merging Buddhist mindfulness practices with the Twelve Step program, this updated edition of the bestselling recovery guide One Breath at a Time will inspire and enlighten you to live a better, healthier life.

Many in recovery turn to the Twelve Steps to overcome their addictions, but struggle with the spiritual program. But what they might not realize is that Buddhist teachings are intrinsically intertwined with the lessons of the Twelve Steps, and offer time-tested methods for addressing the challenges of sobriety.

In what is considered the cornerstone of the most significant recovery movement of the 21st century, Kevin Griffin shares his own extraordinary journey to sobriety and how he integrated the Twelve Steps of recovery with Buddhist mindfulness practices. With a new foreword by William Alexander, the author of Ordinary Recovery, One Breath at a Time takes you on a journey through the Steps, examining critical ideas like Powerlessness, Higher Power, and Moral Inventory through the lens of the core concepts of Buddhism—the Four Noble Truths, the Eightfold Path, mindfulness, loving-kindness, and more. The result is a book that presents techniques and meditations for finding clarity and awareness in your life, just as it has for thousands of addicts and alcoholics.
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About the author

Kevin Griffin is the author of One Breath at a Time, Recovering Joy, and A Burning Desire. A longtime Buddhist practitioner and Twelve Step participant, he is a leader in the mindful recovery movement and one of the founders of the Buddhist Recovery Network. Griffin teaches nationally in Buddhist centers, treatment centers, and academic settings. He specializes in helping people in recovery connect with meditation and a progressive understanding of the Twelve Steps.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Rodale Books
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Published on
Feb 6, 2018
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Pages
304
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ISBN
9781635651812
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Body, Mind & Spirit / Spiritualism
Religion / Buddhism / Rituals & Practice
Self-Help / Twelve-Step Programs
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Paul Williams is an alcoholic.

Tracey Jackson is not.

But together, these two close friends have written Gratitude and Trust, a book designed to apply the principles of the recovery movement to the countless people who are not addicts but nevertheless need effective help with their difficulties and pain.
Williams, the award-winning songwriter, actor, and performer, has embraced a traditional alcoholism recovery plan for more than two decades of sobriety. Jackson, a well-known TV and film writer—and veteran of many years of traditional therapy—has never been a drunk or a drug abuser, but she realized that many of the tenets of Williams’s program could apply to her. In Gratitude and Trust, Williams and Jackson ask: What happens to those who struggle with vexing problems yet are not full-blown addicts? Are there any lessons to be learned from the foundational and time-tested principles of the recovery movement?

Whether you’re tethered to your phone or you turn to food for comfort; whether you’re a perfectionist and can’t let things go or are too afraid to fail to even try; whether you can find intimacy only on the Internet or you’ve been involved in a string of nasty relationships—the first step toward feeling better about yourself and your life is the realization that you are what’s standing in your way. Williams and Jackson have designed a new, positive program, based on a half-dozen new affirmations, that can help conquer your vices, address personal dysfunction, and start to brighten the darkest moods. Gratitude and Trust is an essential, inspirational, and uplifting guide to identifying and changing maladaptive behaviors in order to uncover your most productive, healthiest self.
The face of addiction and alcoholism is a face that many have seen before -- it may be a celebrity, a colleague, or even a family member. And though the 12-step program by itself can often bring initial success, many addicts find themselves relapsing back into old ways and old patterns, or replacing one addiction with another. Author Darren Littlejohn has been there and back, and presents a complimentary guide for recovery to the traditional twelve-step program, out of his own struggles and successes through the study of Zen and Tibetan Buddhism.

Working with the traditional 12-Step philosophy, the author first shares his own life path, and how he came to find the spiritual solace that has greatly enhanced his life in recovery. Then, he details out how his work integrating Buddhism into the traditional twelve-step programs validates both aspects of the recovery process. While being careful not to present himself as a Tibetan lama or Zen master, the author shows how each step -- such as admitting there is a problem, seeking help, engaging in a thorough self-examination, making amends for harm done, and helping other drug addicts who want to recover -- fits into the Bodhisattva path. This integration makes Buddhism accessible for addicts, and the 12 Steps understandable for Buddhists who may otherwise be at a loss to help those in need.

The 12-Step Buddhist is designed to be a complimentary practice to the traditional 12-step journey, not a replacement. While traditional twelve-step programs help addicts become sober by removing the drug of choice and providing a spiritual path, they rarely delve deep into what causes people to suffer in the first place. The integration of Buddhism with the traditional process provides the wisdom and meditations that can help addicts truly find a deep, spiritual liberation from all causes and conditions of suffering -- for good.
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