Buddhist Recovery Summit Returns to Northwest

Written by: Buddhist Recovery team

Recovery experts came from around the world for the 2017 Buddhist recovery summit.

Recovery experts came from around the world for the 2017 Buddhist recovery summit.
Photos by: Ahvalo Photography, Steve Wilhelm

Two years after people came from around the world for Buddhist Recovery Summit 2017, many of the same leaders will be gathering again to discuss next steps.

Buddhist Recovery Summit 2019 will take place in Lacey, Washington September 5-8. Attendees will gather at the Gwinwood Retreat Center, as was the case in 2017.

The title of this year’s summit is: Recovery: What’s Buddhism Got to Do With It?
Vimalasara Mason-John, president of the Buddhist Recovery Network and a primary conference organizer, said in a statement that all are welcome.

“Come join us at the intersection of Buddhist practice and recovery from addiction. The summit will be a global gathering of peers, teachers, authors, healers, meeting facilitators, practitioners, and people who are interested in learning more about recovery. All recovery paths and Buddhist lineages are welcome. And all those who don’t identify as Buddhist are welcome too,” her statement said.

Buddhist recovery approaches are attracting people from outside the Buddhist community
Buddhist recovery approaches are attracting people from outside the Buddhist community.

“If you are interested in recovery, what the Buddha says about recovery, and how mindfulness can support recovery from sex, love addiction, and eating disorders, then this event is for you. During the four-day gathering we will engage in presentations, group discussion and sharing, practice, networking, collaborating and much more.”
To register, click this link https://www.rsvpbook.com/event.php?561557 . Registration closes on July 31. Please book to ensure a place.

Here’s a link to the agenda. Some of the topics for this year’s summit include:

  • What has happened since the last summit in 2017, and how have we dealt with sexual allegations in several of our Buddhist communities? Facilitated by John Tsungme Guy and Zanele Khumalo.
  • Panel: Creating safer spaces in our communities – and what we can learn from the Christian and Catholic communities. Speakers: Sue Neufeld-Ellis, co-author of “Clergy Sexual Misconduct,” and a chemical dependency counselor and Buddhist practitioner; and Brian Dean Williams, Buddhist teacher, workshop leader and therapist specializing in trauma and addictions.
  • Panel: Taboo addictions. Speakers: Deborah Grace, a Buddhist therapist who specializes in sex and love addiction; Dr. Valerie Mason-John, specializing in eating disorders, anorexia, bulimia nervosa and compulsive over-eating.
  • Back by popular demand: Kevin Griffin and Vince Cullen, on what the Buddhist suttas have to teach us about addiction and recovery.

“These are exciting times for people in recovery,” Mason-John said. “There is so much choice, no longer can people say, ‘I don’t believe in God as an excuse not to go to a recovery program.’”

“Buddhist Recovery has opened up a new doorway into recovery, one that is full of compassion and inspiration,” she said. “Buddhism is the oldest recovery program that we know of, and it’s taken 2,600 years to recognize it. Now that we have awakened to reality and have seen the truth in the teachings, let’s pass on the wisdom.”

About the Author: Buddhist Recovery team