#324: Your Craving Mind | Kevin Griffin


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This is an episode about our craving, grasping minds. Whether you have struggled with a classic addiction or not, we all have addictive tendencies; we all wrestle with desire. I often think about a provocative question once posed by my friend, Dr. Jud Brewer, a Buddhist practitioner and addiction specialist: Are we all addicted? The implied answer is yes.

My guest today thinks about addiction in a similarly broad and compelling way. He talks about addictions to substances like drugs and alcohol, but also addiction to self and addiction to racism. Kevin Griffin is a longtime Buddhist practitioner and 12 Step participant, and is one of the founders of the Buddhist Recovery Network. He has trained with many of the legendary teachers we have interviewed on this show, including Jack Kornfield and Joseph Goldstein. He has written many books, including One Breath at a Time: Buddhism & the Twelve Steps. His latest is Buddhism & the Twelve Steps: Daily Reflections: Thoughts on Dharma and Recovery.

This is the first in a two part series we’re doing this week on addiction. During the pandemic, we’ve seen alcohol use go up and drug overdose deaths rise. On Wednesday, we’re going to talk to a woman named Annie Grace, who has come up with what she believes is a powerful alternative to AA. But today, it’s Kevin Griffin. We cover a lot of ground here, including: How he connects the dharma to the 12 Steps, and a Buddhist list called the three refuges. But we start with what he calls the foundational addiction: addiction to the self.

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