Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
SarathW
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by SarathW »

Smoking is a disgusting habit.
I used to smoke for a shorter period.
It hearts me emotionally , health wise , economically and socially.
Addiction is so great you compromise your dignity to just to have a smoke.

============
It is even more disgusting to see when monks smoke. :(
You will find enough Vinaya support against smoking If you look hard.
Addiction to smoking is a form of craving.
I have my sympathy for all who smoke (addiction) and non-smoke (passive smoking).
One should have a strong will power to break this habit.
:meditate:
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”
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Ceisiwr
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by Ceisiwr »

Bhikkhu Pesala wrote:Why does it matter to you? Are you a smoker who wants to give up, but cannot?

No, I'm just interested to hear other peoples opinion :smile:
"Because of attachment to doctrines one approaches and refutes,
For those unattached, how can they dispute?
Not because self or no-self are said to be true,
He has only shaken off all harmful views."


Duṭṭhaṭṭhaka Sutta
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tattoogunman
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by tattoogunman »

I read something that said that smoking *may* fall within the sensual misconduct precept in that smoking might be considered an overindulgence in something that provides a sensual type pleasure (similar to gluttony for example). Smoking is also self destructive, addictive, and can lead to death (i.e. cancer) and I would think that would also violate the first precept of not taking the life of beings (i.e. essentially killing oneself).

I've seen various documentaries and TV shows where monks are seen smoking, but you also have to realize that Asian countries in general tend to have higher tobacco use than other countries. I would think that, had the Buddha been around today, he probably would have included smoking in the fifth precept, but who knows? ;)
2600htz
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by 2600htz »

Its unhealthy and can kill u :), but probably the danger of becoming excessively harsh with what u can or cannot do is a bigger hindrance to your mind state.
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DNS
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by DNS »

Smoking can be harmful to oneself and this appears to be universally accepted. Smoking can also be harmful to others in the form of second-hand smoke which has been known to greatly increase the risk of lung cancer in non-smokers. Although theoretically, a smoker could only smoke by themselves or with other smokers in a designated area. It does not violate the fifth precept and wouldn't violate the first precept either since it can be done away from others and if we started condemning every action that might lead to a future death, we would probably be opening a pandora's box of potential things to ban from GMO food products, high cholesterol foods, etc.

Unskillful, unnecessary, craving; certainly, but not a violation of precepts.
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ihrjordan
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by ihrjordan »

If you know the Vinaya you can kill a chicken....Can Buddhists under precepts smoke? Yes, should they? No. Is it a horrible thing when monastics smoke so as to cause practitioners to lose faith? Absolutely.
someguy83
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Smoking Tobacco break the precept?

Post by someguy83 »

Does smoking (Tobbaco/Nicotine) break the precept - Do not take Intoxicants?.
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DNS
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Re: Smoking Tobacco break the precept?

Post by DNS »

http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?t=23512" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
someguy83
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Re: Smoking Tobacco break the precept?

Post by someguy83 »

David N. Snyder wrote:http://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?t=23512" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Thanks David. So it looks like it does not break the 5th precept as Nicotine does increase Alertness and Awareness and definitely does not cause Headlessness.

However, Smoking in the long run could lead to Death and could come under the category of Vibhava Tanha (craving for Anhilliation).......Again that would depend on Perception. According to me it is not craving but to others it could be craving.......I have seen people smoking all their lives without being inflicted with Cancer while statistics say that it does increase the risk of Cancer. It is at best subject to doubt and question.
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bodom
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by bodom »

In letter no. In spirit yes.

:namaste:
This is our foundation: to have sati, recollection, and sampajañña, self-awareness, whether standing, walking, sitting, or reclining. Whatever arises, just leave it be, don’t cling to it. Whether it’s like or dislike, happiness or suffering, doubt or certainty... Don’t try to label everything, just know it. See that all the things that arise in the mind are simply sensations. They are transient. They arise, exist and cease. That’s all there is to them, they have no self or being, they are neither ‘us’ nor ‘them’. None of them are worthy of clinging to.

- Ajahn Chah
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Dhammakid
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by Dhammakid »

I haven't called myself a Buddhist in a long time because I've begun smoking both cannabis and tobacco and drinking alcohol again, after having given it up. Because of this, I haven't taken the precepts or refuge in years. I think one can rationalize something if they really just want to do it. But it's important to be honest with ourselves. I like to think that if there's any ambiguity over what I should or should not do, I'll try to either refrain from the behavior if I can, or at least be honest about the impact of the behavior if I decide to do it.

Tobacco executives marketed their products to children in a deliberate way, and then lied to congress about knowledge of its carcinogenic properties. These men were seriously immoral, all to make a buck. I say this knowing that I've supported their behavior with my money. But it's something to consider.
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Dhammakid
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by Dhammakid »

Forgot to mention that I'm currently attempting to give up all smoking and intoxicants and to eventually take refuge and the precepts again. Coming back to Dhamma Wheel is a part of the process for me.

Really enjoyed that article, by the way. Good read.

:anjali:
MikeWest
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by MikeWest »

Hello friends, long time lurker, first time caller. Having dealt with this and other problems for extensive periods of time, here are my 2c:

Health issues and precepts aside, any substance addiction, large or small, personifies the essence of bondage. It is not conducive to practice & insight. How serious are you about your practice if you thoughtlessly allow these things to be part of your life? How do you deal with other forms of dukkha? Do you stop sitting when your legs get stiff or painful as well? What about the pains of separation and decay? Constantly, constantly around us. Really not pointing any fingers, just some food for thought... Trust me, I know how hard it is! I've struggled with nicotine addiction, alcoholism, overeating (all symptoms of a lifelong severe anxiety disorder) - with Dhamma it is possible!

Maybe not everyone has to be a teetotaler but for me it was absolutely necessary, all indulgences relate, they deepen existing attachments and cause new ones to pop up, before long one is sinking deeper and deeper, utterly at the mercy of whatever next blow Mara will deliver.

I understand from some of these posts that some of you are indeed trying to quit. If you struggle, please avoid mindless entertainment, spicy foods and meat, go out in nature whenever possible. Seat yourself in a secluded place - That voice in your head might prefer a later time but there will be no later time to deal with this, only now. Entrust yourself to Dhamma & turn away from fear and vacillation. These perceptions of withdrawal, of sensual dependencies, of self and other, of time and space (we'll throw those in just for good measure) - this is dukkha, only dukkha arises, only dukkha passes away. Now is the time to believe in that, and grow dispassionate and free.

This Sutta has been immeasurably helpful and inspiring for myself during rough times like these:

Bāhiya Sutta
"Then, Bāhiya, you should train yourself thus: In reference to the seen, there will be only the seen. In reference to the heard, only the heard. In reference to the sensed, only the sensed. In reference to the cognized, only the cognized. That is how you should train yourself.

When for you there will be only the seen in reference to the seen, only the heard in reference to the heard, only the sensed in reference to the sensed, only the cognized in reference to the cognized, then, Bāhiya, there is no you in connection with that.

When there is no you in connection with that, there is no you there. When there is no you there, you are neither here nor yonder nor between the two. This, just this, is the end of stress."
Peace
ieee23
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Re: Buddhism and smoking, what's your thoughts?

Post by ieee23 »

I like Ajahn Brahm's thought that Buddhist ethics can be summarized as not harming other living beings or yourself. Smoking doesn't seem to fit in with either of those rules.
Whatever a bhikkhu frequently thinks and ponders upon, that will become the inclination of his mind. - MN 19
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