It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that faith based rehab focuses primarily on the religious side of recovery. What is a little less clear is how this differs from traditional addiction recovery regimens.
The vast majority of 12-Step based recovery programs are at some level “faith based.” What that means is that addiction recovery focuses on a three-part system consisting of the mind, the body, and the spirit.
Faith based recovery is for the mind, spirit and body
The mind and the body, sure—it is easy to understand why those need to be focused on, but the spirit? How does that make any difference?
There is a saying among many in recovery that the “-ism” part of “alcoholism” is an acronym for “internal spiritual malady/maladjustment.” We can understand how the mental obsession starts, takes hold, and operates. We can understand that there is a physical reaction and abnormal processing of alcohol/drugs in the body. However, without treating the spirit—the thing that dictates how we live our daily lives and interact with others naturally—that knowledge rarely brings any lasting recovery.
Many might be put off by thinking that “faith based rehab” is synonymous with “Christian recovery,” but that is not always so. The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous is very clear on this, and it is broken down further in Appendix II. All that is necessary to start on the road to recovery is an open mind to the idea that there could be a greater force in the universe than oneself.
That is all.
There is no specification on who or what that force is—it is up to the alcoholic or addict to decide.
This is where faith based recovery comes in. For many, they already have and believe in this force, and already have access to what basically amounts to an extra set of tools for recovery.
Some find that they are more inclined towards religious teachings than they thought through treating the spiritual side of addiction recovery. Others do not. Neither group has an advantage over the other—they are simply different paths that lead to the same destination.
That is exactly why we offer faith-based rehab, too. Every alcoholic and addict should have the best chances of addiction recovery possible, and that means different approaches for different people.
We are alcoholics and addicts; if one size fit all, we would not have ended up where we did in the first place.
Whatever an addict or alcoholic’s spiritual leanings are (if any), there is hope for recovery. Faith based rehab is intended to strengthen the spiritual health of the alcoholic or addict who is looking for addiction recovery and needs additional help to what their pre-existing religious beliefs already provide.
The 12-Step process has always been about establishing a relationship with a Higher Power, but its founders were also very clear that they were not the sole means of addiction recovery. All we ask is that our clients keep an open mind.
After all, if we keep doing what we are doing, we keep getting what we are getting.