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The Refuge Recovery program is a meeting-based self-help program that is similar to Alcoholics Anonymous. However, Refuge Recovery is non-theistic and based on Buddhist practices like mindfulness. Refuge Recovery is one of several self-help addiction treatment programs we offer. Call The Bluffs Ohio today at 850-374-5331 for more information.

What Is Refuge Recovery?

If you’re searching for a Refuge Recovery program in Ohio, we can help. The goal of Refuge Recovery is to help participants embrace a healthier lifestyle that includes sobriety and stress management.

The program is based on The Four Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path. Both traditions are guidelines intended to help members integrate mindfulness practices into their everyday lives.

The program was founded in 2014 by Buddhist teacher and therapist, Noah Levin. Though Refuge Recovery is relatively new, it is grounded in well-researched, evidence-based practices and therapies that have been around for many decades, including:

  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy – CBT helps people in recovery change negative patterns of thinking and behaving
  • Mindfulness practice – Mindfulness has been shown to be effective for reducing cravings, stress, and relapse
  • Buddhism – The practice of Buddhism can increase self-awareness, which helps people decrease risky and self-harming behaviors
  • Meetings – Studies confirm the correlation between self-help meetings and continued recovery and accountability


Though Refuge Recovery incorporates many of the spiritual traditions of Buddhism, it remains a non-theistic program and doesn’t require participants to believe in God or a higher power.

The Four Noble Truths and The Eightfold Path

The Four Noble Truths make up a philosophy by which participants do their best to live. They are:

  1. Taking inventory of personal suffering to understand your own experience better
  2. Investigating the causes of suffering in preparation for letting it go
  3. Understanding that recovery is possible for every person, taking refuge in recovery instead of addiction
  4. Following The Eightfold Path


The Eightfold Path is similar to the 12 Steps in A.A. It provides participants with a framework and real-life steps they can take to maintain sobriety.

  1. Understanding – Understanding that recovery begins with you
  2. Intentions – Set an intention to live a life that is rooted in compassion
  3. Community – Take refuge in your mindfulness practice and your community
  4. Actions – Abstain from harmful substances and live according to Buddhist principles
  5. Livelihood – Give to others and be of service
  6. Effort – Create a daily meditation practice
  7. Mindfulness – Practice mindfulness every day
  8. Concentration – Use meditation to help focus the mind

The Eightfold Path isn’t a linear list of steps to be worked through one at a time. Instead, it’s a group of principles that should be integrated into daily life.

What Are Refuge Recovery Meetings Like?

Refuge Recovery meetings are similar to other self-help group meetings. They are facilitated by a volunteer who has experience in recovery and the Refuge Recovery guidelines. Meetings last 60 to 90 minutes and include readings from Refuge Recovery literature, group sharing, meditation, and announcements.

Meetings are available online and in person. Open meetings are open to anyone, including people with substance use disorders and their friends and family members. Closed meetings are only for those struggling with addiction. Gender-specific and LGBTQIA+ meetings may be available in your area or online.

The Bluffs Ohio offers a Refuge Recovery program in Ohio along with other evidence-based self-help programs.

Contact The Bluffs Ohio for Refuge Addiction Recovery Program in Ohio

The Refuge Recovery Program is a part of what we call Pick Your Path. When you Pick Your Path with The Bluffs, you work with your treatment team to identify the recovery method that is most closely aligned with your needs and goals. With the support of your treatment team, you select the path you feel will be most beneficial for you.

At The Bluffs Ohio, we understand that each patient’s recovery journey is different. Providing a variety of therapeutic options, such as a Refuge addiction recovery program in Ohio, is an important part of the comprehensive treatment we provide. Call The Bluffs Ohio at 850-374-5331 with questions about Refuge Recovery or any of the treatments we offer.

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