The steps along the path in this book are loosely based on the principles I extracted from The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. I started my recovery journey in the rooms of AA. The primary difference between the twelve steps as presented in this book and the official twelve steps of Alcoholics Anonymous is that there is no mention of a god of any understanding in the steps along the path presented in this book. I never believed in an external god of any description and this was problematic for me in making sense of the steps. I hear from many others in recovery that the issue of the word “god” in the twelve-step programs is a problem for them too. For some, this problem keeps them away from recovery programs. It is my hope that this book will be of help to those addicts who want the principles of recovery without committing to a god.
I met several teachers/mentors along the way. I studied with Marshall Rosenberg and learned the gentleness and wisdom of Nonviolent Communication. I studied with Dr. Deepak Chopra and became a certified meditation teacher with The Chopra Center. I blossomed in the garden of the Lotus Sutra, studying and practicing with my Buddhist minister, my sensei Reverend Kanjin Cederman. It is in the beautiful stories, parables, and teachings of Nichiren Shu Buddhism that I find the fullness of life. It is my hope that by sharing my path, you may also find a passage out of addiction and into joyfulness.