buddhism and marijuana

Discussion in 'Buddhism' started by andrew998, May 14, 2007.

  1. andrew998

    andrew998 Member

    does anyone consider marijuana to interfere with the buddhist beliefs of mindfulness,

    i personally dont
  2. Personally, yes I do.
    if it interferes with our perception in a way that we do not see things accurately, then yes it is an intoxicant (fifth precept) and therefore is a hindrance to the practice.
  3. darrellkitchen

    darrellkitchen Lifetime Supporter

    It doesn't really matter much whether we believe it or not. What matters is that Buddha said that one should refrain from intoxicants which lead to headlessness, or as some translations say, "lack of mindfulness".

    If you intend to practice Buddhism and the path which leads to an end of suffering, or Dukkha, then you must practice it fully, starting with the five precepts ...
    1. To refrain from taking the breath of a living being.
    2. To refrain from taking what is not given.
    3. To refrain from sexual misconduct.
    4. To refrain from incorrect speech.
    5. To refrain from taking intoxicants which lead to lack of mindfulness.
    Now, you can say your a Buddhist and still not take any of the precepts. But, just because you say you are, doesn't mean you are. Same as me. Just because I say Im a Buddhist, doesn't mean I really am. Just because I wear the robes doesn't mean Im a Buddhist. Just because I abide by the 227 rules of conduct for a Buddhist monastic doesn't mean Im a Buddhist. What means that I am a Buddhist is that I follow the precepts wholeheartedly, and with the intention of following them in order to become free from greed, ill-will and delusion.

    The precepts are the foundation to Sila (morality), which leads to Samadhi (concentration), which leads to Panna (wisdom). Without morality there can be no concentration. Without concentration there can be no wisdom. Without wisdom there can be no liberation.

    So to those who want to hang on to their intoxicants, I say ... enjoy your suffering and misery. You'll be in it for a while anyway.

  4. andrew998

    andrew998 Member

    i understand what you are saying

    i dont consider myself buddhist, but if i were to choose a religion that best fits my beliefs i would choose buddhism (mostly mahayana)

    now i also smoke marijuana regularly, being a few times a week, and have been for about a year, im a smart kid as far as academics go, but anyway, my marijuana usage has given me higher appreciation of many different things, one of which was eastern culture and has further inspired me to look into buddhism, the drug and the religion have helped me to become what i consider a better person,
    i no longer shoplift, lie, cheat, or do other things i now consider immoral,

    im not trying to justify marijuana use, as i agree it does lead to unmindfulness, but at the same i do credit both marijuana and buddhism together to have given be better behavior, better morals, and a more positive outlook on life,

    also i dont drink alcohol, because i feel it just limits peoples thinking, where as marijuana does kind of the opposite,
  5. darrellkitchen

    darrellkitchen Lifetime Supporter

    I don't see any reason in your response why I should believe that you do understand what I am saying.

    You can practice Buddhism as a religion, but Buddhism itself is not a religion. A Mahayanist's goal, if goal is the correct term to use here, is to become a Buddha. Not just an enlightened being like the Arahant (Hearer), or a Pratyakabuddha (Solitary Realizer), but a fully enlightened, self-awakened being called a Buddha. Yes they realize they must stay in the rounds of Samsara. But they also do so in order to perfect the 10 (Theravada) / 6 (Mahayana) perfections called Paramis (Th) / Paramitas (Ma).

    Justifying marijuana is exactly what you are trying to do, don't mix and match words that suit your mood. "i do credit both marijuana and buddhism together ...", Bull ... "to have given me a better behavior, better morals, and a more positive outlook on life," ... let's start with "better morals". Is it moral to break the law? Buddha gave the five precepts in order to perfect morality, breaking a precept aimed at perfecting morality is not morality ... taking intoxicants does not give one "better morals."

    "i feel it just limits peoples thinking, where marijuana does kind of the opposite." So you're saying that marijuana does not limit ones thinking ... another justificatin.

    Sounds to me like you have a mental addiction to marijuana which is exactly why you are trying to justify its use.

    Buddhism and Marijuana, "together", does not create "better behavior", does not create "better morals", does not give "a more positive outlook on life." Breaking the law is not good behavior, is not moral, and is not positive in ones outlook on life. It just makes one an intentional criminal, knowingly breaking the law and feeling justified in doing so out of habitual patterns of addiction to craving and clinging to pleasure.

    However, no matter what anyone says, to you or about your mindset on marijuana, you will continue justifying its use while saying that the very nature of Buddhism is to continue to crave and cling to the feelings that marijuana gives you ... again I say ... Bull ...

  6. hippie_chick666

    hippie_chick666 Senior Member

    Darrell, I have to disagree with you on this point. I do not believe that pot is an intoxicant FOR EVERYONE. I smoke and b/c of my brain chemistry, I can study more clearly and think more deeply, with greater concentration. I take medications for a mental disorder and certain medications create more intoxication than marijuana does. Does that mean that I am breaking the fifth precept by taking my medications? No. BTW, it's only a matter of time before medical marijuana is permitted in every state.

    Peace and love
  7. hippie_chick666

    hippie_chick666 Senior Member

    Can you explain what you mean by making this statement? It can be interpreted in different ways, and I don't want to confuse what you are saying.

    Peace and love
  8. andrew998

    andrew998 Member

    okay i really wasnt thinking when i made my original post, of course marijuana is an intoxicant, and breaking the fifth precept, and its use is definitely a craving, one that leads to suffering,

    but many of the adults i have met who consider themselves buddhist, drink alcohol,
    and theyre justification of that, is that they do not "abuse" alcohol, (i do not know what they consider abuse) and theyre interpretation of the 5th precept is that as long as they do not "abuse" alcohol, they are being mindful

    now whether i agree with them or not is irrelevant, but i dont think i would consider them breaking the 5th precept, everyone interprets things differently, which if i am correct is very important to many schools of buddhism

    darrell, you are clearly very educated and i dont want to seem like im trying to be a dick or anything, i just like debating,
  9. andrew998

    andrew998 Member

    also darrell, im not sure what you mean in your post, but are you saying because marijuana is illegal, its more immoral?
  10. hippie_chick666

    hippie_chick666 Senior Member

    In Tibet, it is illegal to own a picture of the Dali Lama. Does that make it immoral or a law unjust? That is how I see marijuana; an unjust prohibition that will end sooner or later.

    Peace and love
  11. snake sedrick

    snake sedrick Banned

    This is an interesting point.
    A friend of mine became involved with a Tibetan Buddhist group here in the UK about 3 years ago. Previously, this person was a regualr user of cannabis. Due to the influence of the group, they have now quit using it, and taken to drinking instead, which is accepted by the group and the Lamas who run it.

    To me this seems regressive and stupid.

    As Hippychick 666 says, the law against cannabis is an absurdity. It is even arguable whether it is in fact an 'intoxicant' - certainly, it isn't an intoxicant in the way booze is, and even if it were, it doesn't lead to agrrssive behaviour which is characteristic of heavy drinking, or a state of complete incapacity. On the contrary, many people benefit greatly from it's use.
  12. darrellkitchen

    darrellkitchen Lifetime Supporter

    I Left it back there a long time ago ... you seem to be carrying it around with you still!
  13. hippie_chick666

    hippie_chick666 Senior Member

    Nice story Mandell.

    Peace and love
  14. Autentique

    Autentique wonderfabulastic

    all things that alter the way you think are intoxicant, it doesnt matter if you believe they do it in a good or bad way. It's modifying it, you can like buddhism and read into it but how can you be a buddhist if you dont follow it's guidelines...
    and I'm not a buddhist and I smoke and I like buddhism, beggining to learn more about it, maybe with time I will be one, but we are now and not later.
    I think when people ask this questions, what you should really be asking is why do I (smoke in this case) and what is more fulfilling/important to me as a person.
  15. darrellkitchen

    darrellkitchen Lifetime Supporter

    How do you know what I carry and what I don't carry? Are you me?

    I haven't smoked marijuana since the month I first started practicing Buddhism, six years ago.

    You should know what you speak before brandishing accusations.
  16. darrellkitchen

    darrellkitchen Lifetime Supporter

    A pursuit worthy of such noble intention ... addictive or non-addictive ... too bad you see it otherwise ...
  17. Xac

    Xac Visitor

    Does that then include education, open-minded discussion and meditation?
  18. Autentique

    Autentique wonderfabulastic

    are those things you consume?
  19. hippie_chick666

    hippie_chick666 Senior Member

    According to your standards, does that make medication an intoxicant? My meds alter the way I think and/or feel.

    Peace and love
  20. Autentique

    Autentique wonderfabulastic

    They are intoxicants. Not my standards really, because I smoke pot and dont consider myself a buddhist
    its a contradictory thing, is calling oneself a buddhist and following guidelines a "buddhist" thing to do...
    I think is beyond that and the answers, we find them when we look inside, not out, what sense there is in doing things or not because we have to, if we dont believe we do.
    Inspiration vs rules.

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