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Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 3:41 am
by robertk
Dhammanando wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 4:18 am
C. “I undertake the rule of training [that is] abstinence from the basis of negligence, [consisting in] liquors, wines and intoxicants.

Dear Venerable
would this then mean that intoxicants other than alcohol could be included?

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 4:23 am
by Dhammanando
robertk wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 3:41 am
Dear Venerable
would this then mean that intoxicants other than alcohol could be included?
Yes if we take majja to be a noun ("an intoxicating thing"). But no if we take it to be an adjective qualifying the two previous nouns ("[surā and meraya] that are intoxicating"). The commentaries acknowledge both readings as possible, without favouring one or the other.

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 4:36 am
by robertk
Dhammanando wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 4:23 am
robertk wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 3:41 am
Dear Venerable
would this then mean that intoxicants other than alcohol could be included?
Yes if we take majja to be a noun ("an intoxicating thing"). But no if we take it to be an adjective qualifying the two previous nouns ("[surā and meraya] that are intoxicating"). The commentaries acknowledge both readings as possible, without favouring one or the other.
Very interesting, thanks!

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 7:15 am
by salayatananirodha
majjapa is a drunkard

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 6:17 pm
by pitithefool
I've always included other intoxicants under this rule, namely Marijuana and the "hard" drugs, unless prescribed for legitimate medical uses. In my eyes, that follows closest with the spirit of the rule.

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Tue Apr 13, 2021 6:51 pm
by Dhammanando
salayatananirodha wrote: Tue Apr 13, 2021 7:15 am majjapa is a drunkard
Majjapāna - intoxicating drink - is an example of majja being used as an adjective.

Majjavikkaya - trading in intoxicants - is an example of majja being used as a noun.

Majjapa is also an example of majja being used as a noun. Since the suffix -pa means "a drinker" (of any kind of beverage) and since majjapa means a drunkard, it's safe to assume that *in this compound* majja refers only to alcoholic drinks of some kind. The word doesn't, however, suffice to show that the meaning of majja *in general* is limited to alcoholic drinks.

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Fri Apr 30, 2021 11:41 pm
by Rag
I wonder about kombucha: a beverage made of fermented tea. Because it is fermented, it contains a very small amount of alcohol, but not enough to induce intoxication. Minors can purchase it. The ABV is around 0.5. Apparently a ripe banana has around 0.4 ABV. Is there a meaningful difference here? Neither of them cause intoxication. Is drinking kombucha a breach of sila solely because it is a "fermented drink," while eating a banana is not?

Similarly, I wonder about herbal tinctures taken medicinally. a bottle of tincture is around 40-50% alcohol, but one is not meant to straight up drink it. One is supposed to take a very small amount, perhaps mixing it with water or juice. If the resulting mixture has a low alcohol content (such as that of a ripe banana) and it does not smell like alcohol, is it okay to drink?

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 12:31 am
by mjaviem
Rag wrote: Fri Apr 30, 2021 11:41 pm ...
I would say it's safe. You explained that a few cups don't cause heedlessness, you already had due care to learn about it, and you don't drink it with the intention to lose alertness. I think it's as simple as that.

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 8:01 am
by sakka
When it comes to alcohol in all its various forms I abstain 100%, not a single drop. :toast:

I have no experience from other drugs than cannabis so I have no clue, and never will, how the high is from other drugs except cannabis.

A thing that struck me with cannabis is that music sounds way better, food tastes better (munchies) etc. So contemplating the repulsiveness of food or the dangers of sensual enjoyment seems kinda hard if one gets high? ;)

Then again some people can probably end up in a relaxed focused meditative state if they smoke weed. Also, hemp with hardly any THC and much CBD has medicinal properties.

I'm just guessing that harder drugs than cannabis intensifies these very things even more? Music sounds amazing, food is lovely, all sights are beautiful works of art, touch is out of this world... :twothumbsup:

So that is one drawback, often overlooked if one is to practice, that has nothing to do with carelessness. Or am I wrong?

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 8:49 am
by Dhammanando
sakka wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 8:01 am So that is one drawback, often overlooked if one is to practice, that has nothing to do with carelessness. Or am I wrong?
I think what is wrong here, or at least inadequate, is the overly narrow understanding of the term pamāda conveyed by the translation "carelessness".

Not that any of the other English translations (negligence, unawareness, laziness, unconscientiousness, etc.) are any better, for they all share the common defect of being like the blind men who touch only one part of the elephant.

What in Pali is called appamāda comprises three things: mindfulness, understanding and energy/effort (sati, paññā, viriya). When any of the three is weakened or destroyed, the result is pamāda. Whatever causes such a weakening or destruction is a pamādaṭṭhāna.

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 8:52 am
by Sam Vara
Dhammanando wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 8:49 am
sakka wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 8:01 am So that is one drawback, often overlooked if one is to practice, that has nothing to do with carelessness. Or am I wrong?
I think what is wrong here, or at least inadequate, is the overly narrow understanding of the term pamāda conveyed by the translation "carelessness".

Not that any of the other English translations (negligence, unawareness, laziness, unconscientiousness, etc.) are any better, for they all share the common defect of being like the blind men who touch only one part of the elephant.

What in Pali is called appamāda comprises three things: mindfulness, understanding and energy/effort (sati, paññā, viriya). When any of the three is weakened or destroyed, the result is pamāda. Whatever causes such a weakening or undermining is a pamādaṭṭhāna.
Thank you for this, Bhante. It lays to rest a lot of potential fruitless discussion. Is there a source for this threefold inclusion, please?

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 9:04 am
by Dhammanando
Sam Vara wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 8:52 am Thank you for this, Bhante. It lays to rest a lot of potential fruitless discussion. Is there a source for this threefold inclusion, please?
Yes, but I'm afraid I've forgotten precisely where it is. I recall that it's based on the equation of appamāda with the common sutta phrase "ātāpī sampajāno satimā" ("ardent, clearly comprehending and mindful"), with ātāpī identified with kusala viriya, sampajāno with paññā and satimā with sati.

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 9:14 am
by Sam Vara
Dhammanando wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 9:04 am
Sam Vara wrote: Sat May 01, 2021 8:52 am Thank you for this, Bhante. It lays to rest a lot of potential fruitless discussion. Is there a source for this threefold inclusion, please?
Yes, but I'm afraid I've forgotten precisely where it is. I recall that it's based on the equation of appamāda with the common sutta phrase "ātāpī sampajāno satimā" ("ardent, clearly comprehending and mindful"), with ātāpī identified with kusala viriya, sampajāno with paññā and satimā with sati.
Well, that seems to make perfect sense. Thank you. :anjali:

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 9:18 am
by Alino
I don't think that it's a good thing to direct our mind to seek for breaches and means to overcome rules.

We need to look at the spirit of the rule, not at It's form.
It's like the monk who, out of sensual desire, reflected : ok, so Lord Buddha prohibited sex with womens, but he said nothing about animal - what if I do sex with animals?
This reflection about what kind of drugs Buddha spoked about is of the same nature for me...

What we should look closely to - is dukkha of deluded mind. If we see danger in addiction and delusion - there will be no problem to keep this precept.

It's said that while someone want to do something - he is looking for opportunities; but if someone don't want to do something - he is looking for excuses.

Do we realy want to be free? What is the purpose and happiness of freedom? - important questions.
If you want to be free - then free yourself, don't seek for excuses and breaches in order to keep attachments and chains...

I don't judge anybody, just some reflection...
robertk wrote: Mon Apr 12, 2021 7:25 am Either way,
For me things like coffee, tea and tobacco are not included. One could smoke 20 cigs a day with copius coffee and that doesn't lead to someone beating their wife -
And what if wife asks to stop smoking? Or if that addiction makes one dépend too much money on it? Or if one get some illnesses that family have to pay for?

All forms of addictions (games, social médias, etc) have danger in it...

Just some reflection 🙏

Re: 'drink and drugs that cause carelessness'

Posted: Sun May 02, 2021 5:46 pm
by TRobinson465
I dont think its wise to focus strictly on the literal words as it is to ascertain the reasonable meaning. The Buddha also said women are a distraction of the senses for men and vice versa, despite the fact that he probably knew homosexual people existed. That does not mean men can never be a sensual distraction for other men and that homosexuality isn't real and is just a choice. And the first parajika rule says and I quote,
‘If a monk, after taking on the monks’ training and way of life, without first renouncing the training and revealing his weakness, has sexual intercourse, even with a female animal, he is expelled and excluded from the community.’”
This does not mean it is okay to have sex with a male animal. Obviously mind altering drugs used for medicinal purposes can be reasonably excluded but to say it is only alcohol and does not include non-medicinal use of meth or cocaine is a stretch. I would even say abusing regular medicines for mind-altering purposes probably counts as well.