As part of the ‘Sit & Share’ recovery meeting, the leader reads a single topic, no more than a short paragraph or two; which is then contemplated during a 5 or 10-minute silent meditation (see Meeting Format Options).
There are no set books specifically relating to the Fifth Precept ‘Foundations of Recovery’ approach but the following books are highly recommended:
Alternatively, in place of - or as well as - a short topic for reflection, a group may choose to have a suitable reading, perhaps from any of the above books, or from any other appropriate source for discussion and sharing. The following book is used as a source of readings on Hungry Ghost Recovery Retreats and is full of thoughtful and thought provoking readings:
However, people can bring their own books to donate to your ‘topic basket’ or your ‘readings library’ which can be a stack of books or topics written on slips of paper. We would prefer to stick to established Buddhist themes so that, over time, the group develops a common language relating to our practice.
Possible sources of topics might be any simple, short paragraphs covering Foundations of Recovery; and Buddhist core principles or themes.
As well as considering the dark side – if any - of these topics and how they may have brought suffering into our lives; it is essential to also reflect on the bright aspects that have directly affected our recovery and our well-being.
We might also consider what is it that leads to further suffering and what is it that leads to the end of suffering... what is the wise choice, the kind choice; the choice of the heart?
A PDF file with Example Sit-and-Share topics can be downloaded here.
Please send suitable suggestions for contemplation to email@example.com
Version 14022013 – inspired and adapted from Wat Thamkrabok Tudong Sajja contemplations; Against-the-StreamRefuge Recovery Meeting format; Awakin Wednesday Gatherings at Awakin.org; ‘How to start a 12-step Sangha Meeting’ (Darren Littlejohn) and the Buddhist Recovery Network (Kevin Griffin).