4 Noble Truths. Recovery and The Eightfold Path. Meditation and Refuge Recovery

Programs, services, and treatments vary. We Level Up FL is a primary mental health center offering co-occurring treatments. We treat the entirety of behavioral health disorders including their secondary corresponding illnesses to improve long-term recovery outcomes. Get a free mental health assessment and find out what treatment options are most suitable for you. Depending on the extent of secondary behavioral disorders such as addiction we can first help assess your condition and thereafter guide you to suitable treatment options.

What Refuge Recovery?

Refuge Recovery is a practice, a process, a set of tools, a treatment, and a path to healing addiction and the suffering caused by addiction. While options like 12-step groups are the most popular in the United States, alternatives like Refuge Recovery are quickly gaining in popularity. Refuge Recovery does not ask anyone to believe anything. Only to trust the process and do the hard work of recovery. The program will ensure a complete recovery from addiction and a lifelong sense of well-being and happiness when sincerely practiced.

Refuge Recovery is a nonprofit organization focusing on substance. Similar to Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Refuge Recovery is a program that offers assistance free of charge, meetings in group settings. It offers lifestyle guidelines for members to use to get clean and sober. However, unlike AA, Refuge Recovery is based on Buddhist practices of mindfulness, mindful living, and recovery.

It is designed to treat the causes behind the addiction rather than the addiction itself. This approach is very appealing to many, and Refuge Recovery now offers meetings around the U.S., and internationally. Similar to AA, meeting-based therapy isn’t intended to replace medical treatment or other types of therapy. Instead, it is meant to supplement them to provide assistance and support for addicts in the recovering stage.

Refuge Recovery is a practice towards healing
Meditation makes the entire nervous system go into a field of coherence.

Refuge Recovery Meeting

Meetings vary in content based on the participants but typically follow this loose structure.

Generally, The Meetings Following The Following Format:

  • Facilitator/Secretary reads the introduction
  • Leader reads preamble
  • Group volunteers reed additional information
  • 20-minute meditation
  • Weekly reading assignment

Four Noble Truths

Meetings Include A Reading Of The Four Noble Truths:

Refuge Recovery
As we walk the path of Refuge Recovery, we usually uncover a loving heart.
  1. Addiction Creates Suffering: We take stock of all the suffering we have experienced and caused.
  2. The Cause Of Addiction Is Repetitive Craving: We investigate the causes and conditions that lead to addiction and begin the process of letting go.
  3. Recovery Is Possible: We come to understand that recovery is possible and take refuge in the path that leads to the end of addiction.
  4. The Path To Recovery Is Available: We engage in the process of the Eightfold Path that leads to recovery.

Recovery and The Eightfold Path

Members are instructed to follow an “Eight-Fold Path to Recovery,” based on the Eight-Fold Path of Buddhism. These are not Steps, rather they are to be practiced at all times, throughout one’s life. The Path focuses on abstinence from all mind-altering substances and process addictions. Moreover, it includes teachings about conscious intention to live in a way that does not harm self or others. This includes participating in community, service, and meditation.

The Buddhist Eightfold Path is used in Refuge Recovery as an essential part of the overall recovery process. The path is as follows:

  1. Understand that recovery only begins when you abstain from any and all substances, acknowledge that you need help, and work towards forgiveness so that you are able to take responsibility for not only yourself but also for your impact on other individuals.
  2. Build the intention to build a healthy lifestyle that is rooted in not only unattached appreciation but also compassion.
  3. Take refuge in practice and community.
  4. Abstain from all substances and incorporate a variety of Buddhist principles into your life.
  5. Give back to other individuals and attempt to be of service to them.
  6. Put effort into developing a daily practice of yoga, meditation, exercise, kindness, compassion, and actions.
  7. Practice mindfulness on a daily basis.
  8. Practice focusing the mind through meditation.

Unlike the 12 steps, which are considered a linear path, the Eightfold Path used in Refuge Recovery is a basic guideline of principles that should be integrated into your daily life.

In Refuge Recovery, the right understanding of the suffering of addiction leads practitioners to renounce all addictions in order to reduce suffering. The Eightfold Path provides the method to stop addiction. Members meditate both alone and with each other. They support each other, as almost no one does recovery alone.

Meditation and Refuge Recovery

Refuge Recovery is one of the only recovery programs to incorporate meditation and mindfulness into every group meeting and recovery. The group offers various meditations and mindfulness practices, intending to reach the four foundations of mindfulness.

Mediation is a cornerstone of the Refuge Recovery program. Therefore, members commit to sitting in meditation to learn how to be aware of the present moment. Also, meditation teaches how to discover the causes of addiction and the suffering it leads to, and practice loving kindness and forgiveness. Members are encouraged to attend silent meditation retreats of increasing lengths as their years of abstinence and practice grow. They are also instructed to go through an amends process, not unlike that of the 12-Steps [1].

Refuge Recovery
Identify specific and important goals you want to achieve to bring more meaning to your life.

Find the Right Group for You

Refuge Recovery says that everyone has the ability to recover. The only issues are a need for a strong desire to recover, an intention to change, and a willingness to do the work—to practice living. This holistic approach attempts to tackle the causes behind addiction so that recovering addict can change their life for the better. If you or a loved one is suffering from a substance use disorder, it is important that you get help [2].

A treatment center can give you the assistance you need to get over physical addiction and then begin to tackle mental addiction.

This includes Holistic approaches to get to the underlying causes and heal all the related dimensions simultaneously. This approach is somewhat similar to Refuge Recovery by addressing multiple body, mind, emotion, and spirit levels. In addition, this makes it easy to get additional treatment in a single location. Our dedicated team will be there every step as you overcome alcoholism or drug addiction, from individual counseling to alcohol or drug detoxing. Contact us to learn more about how you can enroll in our treatment programs.

Inpatient medical detox and residential primary addiction treatment may be available at our affiliated facility at Level Up West Palm Beach Rehab. For some primary behavioral health treatment clients, medical detox and or addiction rehab may be required first.  If you have a co-occurring severe substance abuse diagnosis, please contact us prior to beginning inpatient mental health therapy. Treatment services may vary. Please call us to learn which treatment options are most suited for your individual needs.


[1] Refuge Recovery – https://www.refugerecovery.org/about

[2] Refuge RecoveryWe Level Up