A Magazine About Food, Art & Exchange In Midtown Kingston, Published By The Hudson Valley Current.


There isn’t a Samadhi Recovery Community Outreach Center everywhere, but in a saner world, there would be one within reach of every human being, deploying their blend of timeless wisdom with research-based, best-in-class people and methods to increase our individual and collective peace, joy and freedom.

Addiction, depression and anxiety are pervasive lately, and it’s not hard to understand why. Mainstream society and the dominant economic paradigm seem almost designed to induce them, even in relatively privileged people who didn’t have traumatic childhoods, nevermind in the vast numbers who did. It can be hard to know what to do as the troubles pile up and generate new troubles.

That’s when Samadhi can throw out a genius-level lifeline of evidence-based therapeutic methods that actually help. Mindfulness-based stress reduction most recently made headlines when a study found that eight weeks of it was just as effective for anxiety as a common antidepressant, but it’s been acknowledged for years as a technique you can learn that hands the controls of your own mind and emotions over to you in ways no medication, licit or illicit,  can match.

“This is an approach to recovery that understands: All individuals have the power and potential to free themselves from the suffering that is caused by addiction,” says Samadhi’s home page. “We feel confident in the power of mindfulness and compassion to relieve suffering of all kinds, including the suffering of addiction. This is a process that cultivates a path of awakening, the path of recovering from the addictions and delusions that have created so much suffering in our lives and in this world.”

All programs are free and open to all, and there’s far more on the menu than meditation. A solid core of evidence-based, cutting edge treatment modalities that don’t rely on pharma: Integrative Harm Reduction Psychotherapy (IHRP), Mindfulness-Based Addiction Recovery (MBAR), Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing (EMDR), Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention (MBRP), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), and Somatic Experiencing. The goal: meeting patients where they are and helping them regain the ability to feel open, peaceful and free.

Participants don’t have to be—or even want to be—completely abstinent from substances to access help—just be interested in developing their own strengths and seeing where that may lead.

Community outreach, programs and peer recovery services, including a wide range of targeted support groups, happen at Samadhi’s Sawkill Road center; an OASAS-certified outpatient clinic is located on Broadway. “The treatment program uses motivational interviewing, elements of dialectical behavioral therapy and mindfulness based cognitive therapy in individual sessions,” says Assistant Counselor Alessandra von Eikh.

“We follow a trauma informed care approach which empowers the staff to recognize and respond to the significance of trauma when providing care to individuals with mental health and/ or substance use conditions/disorders. There are three phases of the Trauma-Informed Care Approach: stabilization, remembering and mourning, and reconnection. These phases each involve therapeutic interventions that reflect the increasing strength of the individual.” Art therapy, recovery hikes, yoga, tai chi, and celebrations fill the Samadhi calendar as well; one symptom of increasing strength is clearly increased fun.

A new anti-gun-violence initiative seeks to grow the circle of open, peaceful and free to include the entire community. Here too, the approach is state-of-the-art. “We believe and maintain that violence is a learned behavior that can be prevented using a disease control method,” says von Eikh. “We are focusing on detecting potentially violent events and interrupting them to prevent violence by utilizing our trained credible messengers. We are going to work with the highest risk individuals to provide ongoing support to change behavior.

The goal: to work proactively with all stakeholders to build healthy norms that reject using violence to solve problems. Program Director Debra Long is an anti-violence veteran, most recently Poughkeepsie’s SNUG program manager, whose vision includes positive leadership, critical analysis, problem-solving and the strategic, creative flexibility that comes with seeing life through multiple lenses.

From the Outreach Center to the housing provided at Samadhi Refuge in Saugerties, founder David Mcnamara has nurtured something incredible in the fertile creative soil of our community in just four short years. A new film, Disconnected, and a proposal to branch out into more Hudson Valley communities are in the works. Visit Samadhiny.org to learn more; call 856.481.4728 to make an appointment.