Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
silentone
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Re: smoking (cough, cough)

Postby silentone » Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:29 pm

Have you tried N acetyl cysteine (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/N-acetyl_cysteine)? Its a very cheap antioxidant you can get in most health/wellness stores It is being used in some promising clinical studies on a variety of physical and mental disorders. Some evidence shows it cuts the addiction from nicotine, cocaine, and other stimulants. It also reduces the toxic damage from the cigarettes and a number of toxic substances. Its been studied for years in the laboratory, some ER physicians use it to treat tylenol overdose (in iv form). You can get 600mg, to 1g pill sizes for about $6-10 that should be about a months supply.

When I was quitting I found green tea to be very helpful. It contains theanine (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theanine) which can also be very useful.

Good luck!

"Quitting smoking is easy. I've done it a thousand times." Mark Twain

Efficacy of N-acetylcysteine in the treatment of nicotine dependence: a double-blind placebo-controlled pilot study.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21606648

** "Interestingly, subjects receiving NAC rated the first cigarette after the abstinence period of 3.5 days as significantly less rewarding than subjects on placebo (p = 0.04, d = 0.85)."

Effects of oral administration of N-acetyl-L-cysteine: a multi-biomarker study in smokers.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11867504

Antioxidant N-acetyl cysteine reverses cigarette smoke-induced myocardial infarction by inhibiting inflammation and oxidative stress in a rat model.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21968809

Effects of N-acetylcysteine on Clara cells in rats with cigarette smoke exposure.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20193479

Buckwheat
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Re: smoking (cough, cough)

Postby Buckwheat » Sun Jan 22, 2012 3:11 am

How is the quit going? I sure hope you are doing well. :anjali:
Sotthī hontu nirantaraṃ - May you forever be well.

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ground
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Re: smoking (cough, cough)

Postby ground » Sun Jan 22, 2012 4:46 am

delf7 wrote:i have been smoking for 35 years. i have tried to quit a thousand times before - ...
so, today is day one - and i have already confronted mr. nic-o-teen with several greetings of "hello, my old friend habit energy - i see you"
so far so good.
any good words would be appriciated.
thank you.
delf

I hope you are still on track.
Since it is all about abandoning habits the most obvious and unwholesome ones should be abandoned first. To spare the abandonment of these "for later when the time will be right" is likely to undermine the abandoment of all other habits and thus progress on the path may be blocked in the first place.

Kind regards

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Moth
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Re: smoking (cough, cough)

Postby Moth » Sun Jan 22, 2012 5:11 pm

I used to smoke as well. Switching to e-cigs helped, but I relapsed a few times after that (usually from bumming a smoke or buying a pack and throwing it out). What really helped me quit was to focus entirely on the unpleasant aspects of smoking, and also by comparing the expectation to the experience itself. For example, if I saw others smoke I would reflect upon how they were rolling the dice with cancer, perpetuating addiction, etc. If I relapsed I focused on the gross feeling and the unsatisfied craving that lingered afterwards, and the sense of shame and disappointment I felt towards myself. If you keep focusing on the negative aspects eventually it will lose its appeal and you will become disenchanted.
May you be happy. May you be a peace. May you be free from suffering.
http://www.everythingspirals.com

delf7
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Re: smoking (cough, cough)

Postby delf7 » Mon Jan 23, 2012 6:32 pm

dhamma_newb wrote:Hi delf7,

Here's a link to an article describing using Mindfulness meditation to "urge surf." It is used by Psychotherapists to help "people recovering from addictions to alcohol and other drugs. It can actually be used to help with any addictive behaviour such as gambling, overeating, inappropriate sex or any other destructive impulses." Hope it helps.

And be gentle with yourself. I took me many failures to finally succeed in my final quit. I wish you the best.

Peace,
Don

Note: I've also attached the article as a PDF


thank you very much for the link & pdf. i have printed it out and looked it over. i think this will be of some help.

delf7
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Re: smoking (cough, cough)

Postby delf7 » Mon Jan 23, 2012 6:41 pm

Buckwheat wrote:How is the quit going? I sure hope you are doing well. :anjali:


thank you for asking. things are going o.k. i have not been able to go longer than 3 or 4 days without a re-lapse, tho.
as of right now, i'm pretty much "on track". i am down from over a pack a DAY when i started this "quit", to 2 packs a WEEK! i plan to cut that in half in a week, then cut that in half the next week. my goal is to be DONE smoking at all by the 6th of february, as that will give me 3 weeks to get over the final withdrawl before my 10-day retreat at the end of the month. i don't want to be distracted by nicotine withdrawl symptoms durring my 1st retreat.
thanx again for asking, everyone, as it helps me want to quit even more when there are people giving encouragement!

Buckwheat
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Re: smoking (cough, cough)

Postby Buckwheat » Tue Jan 31, 2012 3:36 pm

Good... I look forward to your return from retreat with a month of smoke free breathing under your belt. Wishing you the best.
Sotthī hontu nirantaraṃ - May you forever be well.

SarathW
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Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby SarathW » Fri Jan 11, 2013 12:07 pm

Does smoking violate fifth precept?
Are monk allowed to smoke. Please refer attached article.

http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/38/38.htm

Is it possible a person who attain Sotapanna will smoke?

gendun
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby gendun » Fri Jan 11, 2013 1:16 pm

I know nothing of Sotapannas but smoking is clearly a breach of common sense.
Whether it is a breach of precepts is moot.
My understanding of the Theravada view of the fifth precept is that it concernes that which causes heedlessness...Does smoking tobacco do that ?
Gendun P. Brownlow.
Karma Kagyu student.

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Cittasanto
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 11, 2013 3:46 pm

SarathW wrote:Does smoking violate fifth precept?
Are monk allowed to smoke. Please refer attached article.

http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/38/38.htm

Is it possible a person who attain Sotapanna will smoke?

Smoking does not breach the precept, but different cultures have different expectations.
In Thailand it is not unusual to see monks smoke yet in Sri Lanka it is (as I understand it).

Smoking does not cause heedlessness so is not classed in the precept.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"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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Cittasanto
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 11, 2013 3:48 pm

gendun wrote:Whether it is a breach of precepts is moot.

not if you are keeping the precepts and are a smoker.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"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."

gendun
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby gendun » Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:15 pm

Cittasanto wrote:
gendun wrote:Whether it is a breach of precepts is moot.

not if you are keeping the precepts and are a smoker.

I am sorry I dont understand your reply..I thought in your previous reply you said that in your view it was not a breach of precepts..
Gendun P. Brownlow.
Karma Kagyu student.

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Jerrod Lopes
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby Jerrod Lopes » Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:20 pm

I can't see how it violates the fifth precept, but it does violate the first precept.

gendun
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby gendun » Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:22 pm

Really ? is that a widespread Theravadin view ?
Gendun P. Brownlow.
Karma Kagyu student.

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Cittasanto
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:27 pm

gendun wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:
gendun wrote:Whether it is a breach of precepts is moot.

not if you are keeping the precepts and are a smoker.

I am sorry I dont understand your reply..I thought in your previous reply you said that in your view it was not a breach of precepts..

My previous reply was dealing with the OP, that reply was a response to what you said. It is not moot on a practical level when it comes to practising the precepts.
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"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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Cittasanto
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:28 pm

Jerrod Lopes wrote:I can't see how it violates the fifth precept, but it does violate the first precept.

and how does it violate either?
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"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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David N. Snyder
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby David N. Snyder » Fri Jan 11, 2013 4:42 pm

It doesn't violate the fifth precept since it does not cause heedlessness, but as mentioned above it does violate common sense. There is no health reason (that I know of) for smoking tobacco. It is not nourishment, i.e., food, so there is no common sense reason to smoke at all and I imagine the main motivation is attachment to the sense pleasure or to the tobacco (not for me or other non-smokers, but attachment for the smokers). Thus, I don't think an anagami or arahant could smoke or want to smoke, but anything lower than an anagami could possibly still be a smoker.

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Mr Man
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby Mr Man » Fri Jan 11, 2013 5:26 pm

I wouldn't judge Ajahn Chah on the fact that he smoked (see link in OP) but as a continuation this excerpt from an interview with Luang Por Jun may be of interest:

"Ajahn Chah heard a desana given by Ajahn Pannananda that discouraged smoking. He said if one couldn't let go of a tiny defilement like smoking, how could one be liberated from the big ones? Ajahn Chah contemplated this, and decided to forbid smoking on these grounds, as well as because few other Ajahns in the district smoked. He thought the resources of the laity could be put to better use. It wasn't easy for the local villagers to get cigarettes. In those days, factory-produced cigarettes weren't available and we only had the local hand-made roll-ups. Some of the monks and novices would directly ask the laity for cigarettes without a being asked if they needed anything, and this went against the bhikkhu Vinaya. He could see problems and difficulties arising because of this". http://www.fsnewsletter.amaravati.org/html/19/jun2.htm

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Jerrod Lopes
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby Jerrod Lopes » Fri Jan 11, 2013 8:51 pm

Cittasanto wrote:
Jerrod Lopes wrote:I can't see how it violates the fifth precept, but it does violate the first precept.

and how does it violate either?


It depends on how the precept is translated. There are those that translate as to abstain from killing a living being, and there are those that translate to abstain from harming any living being. I go by the latter as it makes a lot more sense to me regarding the aim of the precepts on the whole and the practice in general as well. If one abstains from harming living beings for purposes of practice, then doing something which is known to cause harm to living beings is a violation of that precept.

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LonesomeYogurt
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Re: Does smoking violate fifth precept?

Postby LonesomeYogurt » Fri Jan 11, 2013 9:48 pm

Jerrod Lopes wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:
Jerrod Lopes wrote:I can't see how it violates the fifth precept, but it does violate the first precept.

and how does it violate either?


It depends on how the precept is translated. There are those that translate as to abstain from killing a living being, and there are those that translate to abstain from harming any living being. I go by the latter as it makes a lot more sense to me regarding the aim of the precepts on the whole and the practice in general as well. If one abstains from harming living beings for purposes of practice, then doing something which is known to cause harm to living beings is a violation of that precept.

But monks are allowed to harm living beings in specific circumstances; for example, kicking an assailant away to survive an attempted murder. Would that mean that some Vinaya laws allow for the breaking of the first precept?

I agree that we should all abstain from harming living beings whenever possible, but I think that translating the first precept as complete abstention from all possible harming leads to a lot of logical inconsistencies within the texts.

My two cents.
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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