Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

General discussion of issues related to Theravada Training of Sila, the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).

Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby zolek » Thu Aug 09, 2012 7:31 pm

Hi,

I've just wondering if people working for a legal marijuana dispensary have violated the 5th precept ? What makes it different from selling alcohol is that alcohol is clearly intoxicants, while in this case it's for medical uses only. What do you think ?

Much metta,
zolek
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby LonesomeYogurt » Thu Aug 09, 2012 7:49 pm

Marijuana is an intoxicant and thus selling it is a violation of the Buddha's prescription for right livelihood.
Gain and loss, status and disgrace,
censure and praise, pleasure and pain:
these conditions among human beings are inconstant,
impermanent, subject to change.

Knowing this, the wise person, mindful,
ponders these changing conditions.
Desirable things don’t charm the mind,
undesirable ones bring no resistance.

His welcoming and rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
- Lokavipatti Sutta

Stuff I write about things.
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby bodom » Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:01 pm

LonesomeYogurt wrote:Marijuana is an intoxicant and thus selling it is a violation of the Buddha's prescription for right livelihood.


What about narcotic pain relievers sold by pharmacists?

: anjali:
The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby SDC » Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:06 pm

What bodom said...
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby zolek » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:03 pm

At first, I thought that it's intoxicant and violate the 5th precept. But I now think about it twice and I got confused. I think it as a drug have good and bad side. It's only bad when people abuse it. In this case, seller intention is important. Is it right
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:09 pm

As is typical, the Buddha was way ahead of his time, stating that for medicinal use it is okay:

http://www.dhammawiki.com/index.php?title=Cannabis

Medicine is allowed and sometimes medicine can be drugs/narcotics.
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:14 pm

zolek wrote:Hi,

I've just wondering if people working for a legal marijuana dispensary have violated the 5th precept ? What makes it different from selling alcohol is that alcohol is clearly intoxicants, while in this case it's for medical uses only. What do you think ?

Much metta,
zolek

It would depend on why it is being sold!
but the answer is in your post, it is a legal marijuana dispensary so the person getting it would need to have it prescribed and it would be for certain things not anything, and for a particular purpose not for the sake of getting high!
so no they do not as it is a medicine, and would be classed as such in this instance.
morphine has the same problem, but how it is legally obtained is not breaking the precept.

The texts give an allowance for a certain amount of alcohol to be used in medicine, and although times have changed and drugs have also, the great standard is often used to make allowable things that are for medical purposes for legitimate reasons.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby Ytrog » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:19 pm

Moderation is key. If people can relieve pain and make an unbearable situation bareable it might be the lesser evil. Remember that a lot of food contains ingredients which influence your mind (think chocolate or coffee) not to mention the chemicals your body makes. It is no joke that love is intoxicating. Research found much the same chemicals in brains of people in love as heroin users.
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:19 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:As is typical, the Buddha was way ahead of his time, stating that for medicinal use it is okay:

http://www.dhammawiki.com/index.php?title=Cannabis

Medicine is allowed and sometimes medicine can be drugs/narcotics.

although I doubt it is sold for that purpose I am curious as to its effectiveness?
not that I have rhumatic pain, but just curious if there have been any experiments in this medically?
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:27 pm

I am not sure about its effectiveness in rheumatism, but have heard it is good for glaucoma, chemotherapy and AIDS patients, and others with chronic pain conditions.
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:36 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:I am not sure about its effectiveness in rheumatism, but have heard it is good for glaucoma, chemotherapy and AIDS patients, and others with chronic pain conditions.

I have heard this also, but there maybe some mad scientist who would like to test it
http://www.imarijuana.com/medical-marij ... -treatment
there is quite a list of other problems also
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby zolek » Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:17 pm

I agree, marijuana medical purposes has long been established. Still, I'm still confused. As you said the key is moderation, and I have to agree. Even though the seller needs permit to sell, and patients need prescription to buy, seller have no control how it be used. If I get into the business, at the end of the day, I still wondering how many percentage the patients only use it as prescribed...
But on the other hand, it's still no seller's responsibility, right? If the seller's sole intention is to sell for prescribed patients, would it classified as ethical business ?

I've been thinking about this for quite some time, and I'm still not clear :(
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:32 pm

zolek wrote:If I get into the business, at the end of the day, I still wondering how many percentage the patients only use it as prescribed...


As long as it is a legitimate business that has gone through all the hoops, licensing, permits, testing, etc. then I would estimate at least 99% of the patients would be legitimate with genuine prescriptions from an MD. If it is an illegal business run from a house or apartment, then I would estimate that 99% of the customers would be for recreational purposes.

Choose wisely, i.e., the legitimate route.
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby zolek » Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:44 pm

I'm only talking about legitimate route here because my main concern is that I don't want to violate the precept. Thanks for everyone input, I will consider your opinion very carefully
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Aug 09, 2012 11:03 pm

If it is the legitimate route then there is no offense so long as you only use it for its intended purpose!
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
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"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby danieLion » Fri Aug 10, 2012 3:21 am

Bhikkhu Bodhi said he takes several medications to manage his chronic pain, and I've no doubt some of them have intoxicating effects.

So, the question goes to intent, then, doesn't it? If one sells with intent to help (or consumes cannabis with intent to relieve pain) it's not a precept violation.

Best,
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby manas » Fri Aug 10, 2012 4:17 am

Some over-the-counter pharmaceutical drugs are much more harmful than marijuana, but no one bats an eyelid about them being given to anyone, even young children. For example, there is enough paracetamol in a standard pack of 'panadol' tablets (a common pain reliever) to destroy an adult liver. Of course there are instructions to not exceed the correct dosage, but this is just one example of a drug that is considered 'ok' to be sold everywhere, but, that if misused, could cause death. So I can't see what the big deal is about using marijuana medically. One thing in it's favour is that, even when misused, it kills a negligible amount of people as compared with many other drugs. (Last I heard, there were actually zero recorded cases of natural marijuana causing death, as compared with alcohol's millions of deaths per year, for example). And in case anyone thinks I am an apologist for weed, I'm not; because while it doesn't actually kill anyone directly, it does, over the long-term, reduce a person's intelligence, motivation and mindfulness, and is best avoided if possible. So of course I would never advocate marijuana being used for recreational purposes...only medical.

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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby danieLion » Fri Aug 10, 2012 5:45 am

manas wrote:For example, there is enough paracetamol in a standard pack of 'panadol' tablets (a common pain reliever) to destroy an adult liver. Of course there are instructions to not exceed the correct dosage, but this is just one example of a drug that is considered 'ok' to be sold everywhere, but, that if misused, could cause death. So I can't see what the big deal is about using marijuana medically.

Doctors around here love to prescribe medical pot on account of it's one of the only substances they can prescribe that doesn't come with a possible side effect OF DEATH!
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby Annapurna » Fri Aug 10, 2012 5:57 am

Medical Marijuana is available here for prescription as well, for instance for Tourrette Syndrome.

The user has to carry a certificate for the police why he is allowed to carry Marijuana with him.

I watched a documentary about a man with Tourrette who can lead an almost normal life with Marijuana, an effect that is not obtained with other medication.

His intention is not to become high, but to be free of the symptoms of his illness. Also, I think I recall he doesn't get high, just loses the tics.
http://www.schmuckzauberei.blogspot.com/
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Re: Selling medicine marijuana, is it violate the 5th precept

Postby marc108 » Fri Aug 10, 2012 6:32 am

i really believe this depends how each state handles it. if it's being sold for legitimate medicinal reasons (which there are few) and properly regulated marijuana is no different than other drugs or herbs that are intoxicants if abused.

where i live in California, medical marijuana is a joke... you can get a license for use here as long as you have 30 minutes and 50$. i would think that selling marijuana at most American dispensaries would be wrong livelihood.
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