I opened a thread about the effects of a drug I read about and how the mental states it leads to are explained in Buddhism. And what I get is a bunch of ex-hippies advocating the use of drugs, narcotics, psychedelics etc? LOL
I guess I should just stick to taking advice from non-westerner Buddhists from now on. I dont want to be misguided by an former hippy who took up drugs, had lots of sex, and accumulated heavy karma, telling me that you can reach the first two Jhanas by taking LSD.
Personally, I feel that drugs are bad for human beings just like how cigarettes and alcohol are bad (both are listed as "drugs" anyway). You should first introspect why people take drugs to begin with. Here in India, people in the rural areas usually take up alcohol and become addicts to ease themselves out of some trauma or failure or depression. It gives temporary relief. But they end up becoming nuisance to the society, sometimes beating wives, creating a scene in public etc etc.
The underlying reason is to hide from "reality". People get addicted to anything that takes them away from suffering/samsara instantly. Even hallucinations will do, mental disorders will do, retardation will do. I have seen drug addicts with dark eyes, weak strength, and inability to behave in a normal fashion. Please dont tell me that we can experience Buddhism by taking LSD or eating mushrooms. Thats an insult to the great Dharma. I understand that what I am claiming to be "reality" here is itself "dream-like" according to Buddhism. Taking drugs creates even more hallucinations and leads to fabrications in this already "dream-state". So it can certainly not be cool. It harms human beings. It is criminal.
Why do people take drugs? For pleasure, fun, attachment, desire, or probably to run away from the suffering of this world. Same applies to people who start playing world of warcraft day and night.
I guess all Buddhists should denounce drug abuse. Already conventional medicines dont heal without giving side-effects to the body, but tinkering with your mind and nervous system is worse.
A drug-addict who thinks he can fly after taking LSD, because it appears more real than 'real world, cannot even begin to compare with Bodhisattvas, Arhats, Aryas or even normal householder who works diligently. Arhat Mogallana could probably fly for real and that ability comes through hard work, not taking tablets or injecting drugs.
When I read the other thread, I was a bit depressed and was almost in the verge of losing faith (I am not initiated into any sect but have developed some faith and interest in Buddhism in some years) that Buddhism only probably attracts hippies, druggies and losers. But now I am somewhat relieved to regain the faith that the mental states gained by taking mushrooms, LSD or other drugs are nothing but a great illusion and the taker opens gateways for hell by doing so. I was almost into thinking that what the past Buddhists so vividly described in Sutras and Sastras was probably of the same nature as the Shaman who described Spirit-journey by taking Ayahuasca; and therefore Buddhism is probably not any useful in understanding reality or eliminating suffering. But I started reading about the Eastern Buddhists and have finally regained my faith.
Taking drugs? I suppose to run away from ego? What is there other that is "more" painful?
When the goverment of India had a meeting about the more and more arising hippies in the mountains, they scratched in their hair and had no idea how to define them in the dictionary. Finally it became: "hippies are those who don't want to wear their own cloths".
(ego = translated as independent self, misperception... samsara).