After recently having struggles with maintaining my precepts, a spiritual guide suggested I write out a declaration of why I am going to abstain completely from alcohol. I thought I would post what I wrote so that maybe it'll encourage others or help them articulate their feelings towards abstinence.
I do not drink alcohol because I do not want to have a part in an industry that propagates misery and dependence.
I do not drink alcohol because I do not want to encourage a culture rife with promiscuity, violence, recklessness, and exploitation.
I do not drink alcohol because I have compassion for my body and mind.
I do not drink alcohol because, when faced with frustration, anger, and sadness, I can accept and overcome my pain instead of hiding from it behind a wall of chemicals.
I do not drink alcohol because I am smart enough, funny enough, and kind enough to succeed in social situations without the need for any artificial support.
I do not drink alcohol because responsibility, self-control, and heedfulness are foundational aspects of my interaction with the world, not obstacles to be suppressed in the pursuit of pleasure.
I do not drink alcohol because clear comprehension and mindfulness are greater sources of joy than any chemical or any altered state.
I hope that maybe this manifesto or whatever helps other people who might be struggling to maintain their sobriety in an intoxication culture. Stay strong!
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