The Buddha recognized addiction problems and advised his followers accordingly, although this was not the primary focus of his teachings. Thailand and Japan, which have long-standing Buddhist traditions, have developed Buddhist influenced responses to addiction. With its emphasis on craving and attachment, an understanding of the workings of the mind, as well as practices to work with the mind, Buddhism lends itself as a rich resource to assist addiction recovery. The twelve step movement has been an impetus to making use of ideas and practices from Buddhism. In particular, mindfulness, has started to be used to support addiction recovery, with promising results. Exploration of other areas of Buddhism is beginning, and may provide additional benefit in the future.
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