Smoking tobacco

Moderator: Tibetan Buddhism moderators

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby JinpaRangdrol » Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:32 pm

catmoon wrote:
Virgo wrote:
Namdrol wrote:Oh, I don't agree. I hate walking through clouds of smoke into a building.. Smoking is a nasty habit [I am an ex smoker] and it would be better for all concerned if cigarettes were taxed and banned until it just becomes impossible to smoke..
N

You know, your right. It's poison and there is no benefit to it's consumption. .

Kevin


If there were no benefit, no one would do it. "No benefit" is extremist thinking.


No relative benefit on the path of Creation and Completion. Smoking is ultimately without quality. So is killing. So it stealing. But that doesn't mean we should go around killing and stealing.
Saying "If there were no benefit, no one would do it," is basically saying that because an action is committed, it must be beneficial. This is clearly not true. It may be beneficial to somebody's ego-fixation, sure. But not beneficial on the path to liberation. Serial killers' neuroses are benefitted by killing, because it provides them with satisfaction. Meth addicts' neuroses are benefitted by taking a hit, because it provides them with satisfaction. Smokers' neuroses are benefitted by smoking cigarettes, because it provides THEM with satisfaction. But none of these things are actually beneficial to anybody in the long run.
If somebody is truly beyond conceptions, completely equanimous in every aspect of their life, and abiding uninterruptedly in Rigpa, then smoking would have no effect.
User avatar
JinpaRangdrol
 
Posts: 84
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 7:22 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby catmoon » Tue Jan 17, 2012 6:43 pm

JinpaRangdrol wrote:
catmoon wrote:
Virgo wrote:You know, your right. It's poison and there is no benefit to it's consumption. .

Kevin


If there were no benefit, no one would do it. "No benefit" is extremist thinking.


No relative benefit on the path of Creation and Completion. Smoking is ultimately without quality. So is killing. So it stealing. But that doesn't mean we should go around killing and stealing.
Saying "If there were no benefit, no one would do it," is basically saying that because an action is committed, it must be beneficial. This is clearly not true. It may be beneficial to somebody's ego-fixation, sure. But not beneficial on the path to liberation. Serial killers' neuroses are benefitted by killing, because it provides them with satisfaction. Meth addicts' neuroses are benefitted by taking a hit, because it provides them with satisfaction. Smokers' neuroses are benefitted by smoking cigarettes, because it provides THEM with satisfaction. But none of these things are actually beneficial to anybody in the long run.
If somebody is truly beyond conceptions, completely equanimous in every aspect of their life, and abiding uninterruptedly in Rigpa, then smoking would have no effect.



I really don't think it is fair to lump smoking in with killing and stealing. There's nothing criminal in having a smoke, although some extremists would have it otherwise.

I completely disagree with this:

Saying "If there were no benefit, no one would do it," is basically saying that because an action is committed, it must be beneficial.


The two statements are not even remotely similar. Bear in mind that although I am saying there are some small benefits, the problems outweigh them. But everyone would rather pretend it's completely purely Evil, which is wrong.

Your last statement there is pretty interesting. I wonder if there are precedents, like say a Lama downing a bottle of Scotch and remaining stone cold sober.
Sergeant Schultz knew everything there was to know.
User avatar
catmoon
Former staff member
 
Posts: 3006
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2009 3:20 am
Location: British Columbia

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby JinpaRangdrol » Tue Jan 17, 2012 7:12 pm

catmoon wrote:
JinpaRangdrol wrote:No relative benefit on the path of Creation and Completion. Smoking is ultimately without quality. So is killing. So it stealing. But that doesn't mean we should go around killing and stealing.
Saying "If there were no benefit, no one would do it," is basically saying that because an action is committed, it must be beneficial. This is clearly not true. It may be beneficial to somebody's ego-fixation, sure. But not beneficial on the path to liberation. Serial killers' neuroses are benefitted by killing, because it provides them with satisfaction. Meth addicts' neuroses are benefitted by taking a hit, because it provides them with satisfaction. Smokers' neuroses are benefitted by smoking cigarettes, because it provides THEM with satisfaction. But none of these things are actually beneficial to anybody in the long run.
If somebody is truly beyond conceptions, completely equanimous in every aspect of their life, and abiding uninterruptedly in Rigpa, then smoking would have no effect.



I really don't think it is fair to lump smoking in with killing and stealing. There's nothing criminal in having a smoke, although some extremists would have it otherwise.


Ah, but you're using western legal terminology there...we're not talking about criminal activity. We're talking about virtuous and non-virtuous activities. Smoking is a non-virtuous activity, just like killing and stealing. And smoking causes suffering, just like killing and stealing. In fact, smoking kills and steals the life-force of one's self and those around you. All are inherently empty of qualities, but all are still relatively non-virtuous.


The two statements are not even remotely similar. Bear in mind that although I am saying there are some small benefits, the problems outweigh them. But everyone would rather pretend it's completely purely Evil, which is wrong.


Um...actually they are exactly the same. I suppose I should have said, "...is basically saying that because an action is committed, it must contain some benefit." Which is identical to what you said. Just because people do something doesn't mean it has benefit in the Buddhist context. Like I said, it may have some benefit to the person's neuroses and ego-clinging, but it doesn't help them achieve liberation, which is true benefit.

Your last statement there is pretty interesting. I wonder if there are precedents, like say a Lama downing a bottle of Scotch and remaining stone cold sober.


Absolutely. Old-world Mahasiddhas were notorious for drinking alcohol, but never became intoxicated. Take Tilopa, Naropa, Marpa, and Milarepa, for instance. I'm not a Kagyupa, so I can't give you as much info about them as they could. But I can tell you that the 19th century Terton Do Khyentse Yeshe Dorje drank quite heavily, but was never drunk. There are many stories to attest to that.
User avatar
JinpaRangdrol
 
Posts: 84
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 7:22 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby JinpaRangdrol » Tue Jan 17, 2012 7:20 pm

catmoon wrote:Bear in mind that although I am saying there are some small benefits, the problems outweigh them. But everyone would rather pretend it's completely purely Evil, which is wrong.


You need to understand that this point of view is very Tibetan. The stigma that exists in Tibetan religious culture surrounding tobacco is giant. Some say that the plant itself is what grew out of a demoness' menstrual blood. Is it superstitious? Perhaps. But the very realistic spiritual side-effects of tobacco smoke (blocked channels, inability to navigate the bardo, etc.) is enough to send any Vajrayana practitioner running. So what you're up against is a very deep-seated stigma that transcends spiritual practice and ventures into cultural superstition. I think we can all agree that smoking is bad for you, and bad for practice. Smoking isn't inherently "evil." Nothing is. But it's not beneficial to one's practice, and it's not going to get you enlightened. But we all have the ability to think for ourselves, and if you want to smoke, then you can...
User avatar
JinpaRangdrol
 
Posts: 84
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 7:22 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Sherab Dorje » Tue Jan 17, 2012 7:21 pm

catmoon wrote:I think you are stuck on the idea that smoking is inherently Bad, not Good, and this has rendered you incapable of a balanced view, which would lie somewhere in between.
A balanced view on inhaling in and exhaling clouds of noxious, toxic, cancerous, nauseating fumes in order to gain some short lived benefits that can easily be obtained through other less harmful means? Hmmm... gimme some time on this one, it's gonna take me a fair bit of probing to sort out a balanced view regarding that dilemma!
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 9272
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby wisdom » Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:16 pm

A balanced view comes with balanced consumption. Its possible to look at addiction to smoking in a balanced way, but balanced does not mean that the good and bad are weighed equally, only that the point of view from which one analyzes is a balanced point of view. In this case we can disregard notions of good and evil, which are abandoned by the time we reach Vajrayana anyways where all things are to be seen as pure, coupled with the compassion derived on the Mahayana path, we should in fact feel compassion for smokers, for their plight and misfortune in having become attached to smoking, and even for the demon that lives in tobacco, and the being that made that curse and has inflicted so much harm and generated so much negative karma for itself. Thats my opinion at least, take it with a grain of salt though because in terms of Vajrayana and Buddhism in general I am a total newbie.

The main benefit a smoker derives from smoking is that it helps them not experience the poison of anger and irritability, which in turn can harm other as well. Unfortunately the best benefit also arises from having become addicted in the first place. The second benefit may well be concentration, however whether or not that now arises as a result of satisfying the addiction or not is hard to say. Many drugs have a positive effect like this which goes away after a short period of time but which *appears* to still be present. For example, Marijuana can make you more creative, and give you insight into life problems. However, those benefits deteriorate quickly when used on a daily basis, even though people still think they are more creative, all that creativity is left behind, and instead they are just sitting around doing mundane things and not paying attention to reality.

However looking at all the negative effects of smoking also comes under a balanced view, because the balanced view doesn't ignore so called good or bad qualities in anything, but looks at all with a discerning and discriminating mind, examining the conventional nature of a thing without attaching to the various manifestations of that thing as being either good or bad, as something to accept or to reject. All the negative effects have already been outlined in the thread.

Now if a person smoked on great occasion, once every couple of weeks, like someone who drank or smoked pot in a balanced manner might do, then those health dangers would no longer really be present. A cigarette or two once in awhile is highly unlikely to kill you, at least no more than doing anything else that has been shown to "cause cancer" which includes almost everything under the sun at this point. Then we can still take that balanced view and apply it to the new level of smoking, and see that the benefits of smoking still exist, while the harmful effects are gone. Whether or not the harmful effects of practice would still exist if someone smoked only on great occasion is debatable. I think the reason for the termas and such arose as a result of how addictive and harmful the substance became when it was used additively. Otherwise I think smoking would be classed with sex and alcohol. Something thats OK for laypeople but for those of more strict vows is not OK to do. However, because of its highly addictive and harmful nature, a different view has formed around it. Yet, very rare is the person who really can only smoke one or two cigarettes every couple weeks. For the most part that becomes smoking half a pack for days on end, or outright addiction again, or whatever. If it was really done only on occasion, and one really had the discipline to pull that off, then it could actually (in my limited opinion) be incorporated into our Vajrayana practice as a kind of seeing what is considered conventionally to be impure as pure, of transforming even that demonic substance into gold. It could also be a kind of Chod practice, having compassion for the demon in tobacco and offering oneself to that demon with absolute bodhicitta. Yet of course again what I'm saying is just me going off about things I only barely understand, as well anyone attempting to do this, even if what I'm saying is legitimate, would have to be *very* careful that they were not just carrying on with their addiction thinking that it was Vajrayana, as is often the danger in Vajrayana it seems.

In essence, a really balanced view comes with really balanced use. Unbalanced use when looked at with a balanced view reveals the numerous harmful affects, and those greatly outweigh the benefits.
User avatar
wisdom
 
Posts: 473
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2011 4:33 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby JinpaRangdrol » Tue Jan 17, 2012 8:29 pm

wisdom wrote:It could also be a kind of Chod practice, having compassion for the demon in tobacco and offering oneself to that demon with absolute bodhicitta.


You can definitely approach smoking with Chöd. Specifically feeding your own personal demon of nicotine addiction. It's an outer demon, but tobacco itself isnt the demon, the addiction is. I'd highly recommend reading the chapter "Demons of Addiction" in Lama Tsultrim Allione's book, "Feeding Your Demons."
User avatar
JinpaRangdrol
 
Posts: 84
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 7:22 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Jangchup Donden » Tue Jan 17, 2012 11:28 pm

wisdom wrote:A balanced view comes with balanced consumption. Its possible to look at addiction to smoking in a balanced way, but balanced does not mean that the good and bad are weighed equally, only that the point of view from which one analyzes is a balanced point of view. In this case we can disregard notions of good and evil, which are abandoned by the time we reach Vajrayana anyways where all things are to be seen as pure, coupled with the compassion derived on the Mahayana path, we should in fact feel compassion for smokers, for their plight and misfortune in having become attached to smoking, and even for the demon that lives in tobacco, and the being that made that curse and has inflicted so much harm and generated so much negative karma for itself. Thats my opinion at least, take it with a grain of salt though because in terms of Vajrayana and Buddhism in general I am a total newbie.

The main benefit a smoker derives from smoking is that it helps them not experience the poison of anger and irritability, which in turn can harm other as well. Unfortunately the best benefit also arises from having become addicted in the first place. The second benefit may well be concentration, however whether or not that now arises as a result of satisfying the addiction or not is hard to say. Many drugs have a positive effect like this which goes away after a short period of time but which *appears* to still be present. For example, Marijuana can make you more creative, and give you insight into life problems. However, those benefits deteriorate quickly when used on a daily basis, even though people still think they are more creative, all that creativity is left behind, and instead they are just sitting around doing mundane things and not paying attention to reality.

However looking at all the negative effects of smoking also comes under a balanced view, because the balanced view doesn't ignore so called good or bad qualities in anything, but looks at all with a discerning and discriminating mind, examining the conventional nature of a thing without attaching to the various manifestations of that thing as being either good or bad, as something to accept or to reject. All the negative effects have already been outlined in the thread.

Now if a person smoked on great occasion, once every couple of weeks, like someone who drank or smoked pot in a balanced manner might do, then those health dangers would no longer really be present. A cigarette or two once in awhile is highly unlikely to kill you, at least no more than doing anything else that has been shown to "cause cancer" which includes almost everything under the sun at this point. Then we can still take that balanced view and apply it to the new level of smoking, and see that the benefits of smoking still exist, while the harmful effects are gone. Whether or not the harmful effects of practice would still exist if someone smoked only on great occasion is debatable. I think the reason for the termas and such arose as a result of how addictive and harmful the substance became when it was used additively. Otherwise I think smoking would be classed with sex and alcohol. Something thats OK for laypeople but for those of more strict vows is not OK to do. However, because of its highly addictive and harmful nature, a different view has formed around it. Yet, very rare is the person who really can only smoke one or two cigarettes every couple weeks. For the most part that becomes smoking half a pack for days on end, or outright addiction again, or whatever. If it was really done only on occasion, and one really had the discipline to pull that off, then it could actually (in my limited opinion) be incorporated into our Vajrayana practice as a kind of seeing what is considered conventionally to be impure as pure, of transforming even that demonic substance into gold. It could also be a kind of Chod practice, having compassion for the demon in tobacco and offering oneself to that demon with absolute bodhicitta. Yet of course again what I'm saying is just me going off about things I only barely understand, as well anyone attempting to do this, even if what I'm saying is legitimate, would have to be *very* careful that they were not just carrying on with their addiction thinking that it was Vajrayana, as is often the danger in Vajrayana it seems.

In essence, a really balanced view comes with really balanced use. Unbalanced use when looked at with a balanced view reveals the numerous harmful affects, and those greatly outweigh the benefits.


Middle way doesn't mean sometimes working to extinguish suffering an sometimes working to cause more suffering. If something is negative (and smoking is very negative), it should be abandoned.

Would a balanced approach to rape and murder (not that I'm equating smoking with rape and murder) be to sometimes rape and murder, and sometimes not -- it's all good because you're taking a balanced approach to it?
User avatar
Jangchup Donden
 
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:44 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby wisdom » Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:12 am

Jangchup Donden wrote:Would a balanced approach to rape and murder (not that I'm equating smoking with rape and murder) be to sometimes rape and murder, and sometimes not -- it's all good because you're taking a balanced approach to it?


Of course not. What I'm saying is that anything taken in moderation need not be some absolute evil. I had a McDonalds shake the other day because I wanted one. If I had one every day, it would be really unhealthy. The last time I had one was over a year ago, so I need not worry about the health risks associated with drinking what amounts to fat and sugar every day. If you drink too much water, you can actually die. This happened to a woman a few years back trying to win a gaming console on a radio show. The contest was to see who could drink the most water without peeing, and whoever did it would win. The woman drank like a gallon of water or something and died from over saturation. The point is everything is a poison if you consume too much of it, and many ills come also from not taking enough, then there is "everything in moderation", which is not meant to be taken to extremes of murder and rape, but rather applied using reasoning. Its reasonable to assume that if you smoked a cigarette every couple weeks, in general you would not harm your practice and you would not experience any ill side effects. Granted there are people on this thread talking about running from smoke, or being attacked by demons for smoking a cigarette, and so forth.
User avatar
wisdom
 
Posts: 473
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2011 4:33 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby JinpaRangdrol » Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:37 am

wisdom wrote:Granted there are people on this thread talking about running from smoke, or being attacked by demons for smoking a cigarette, and so forth.


I'm not quite sure why this seems like such an outlandish thing, at least for Tibetan Buddhists on this forum. Dharma Protectors are not just archetypes or superstitions. From a Vajrayana perspective, there really are protectors out there whose role is to protect us. They are external beings (as much as any of us are external to one another...while in essence there is no subject/object, from a relative perspective, there are individual beings) who were once gods or spirits, were subjugated by Guru Rinpoche (and occasionally by other Buddhas and Bodhisattvas), and were bound under oath to protect the Dharma and its' practitioners. One of the primary reasons that tobacco smoke is so "evil" is because these protectors no longer have the ability to protect you. If a practitioner smokes, the protectors basically abandon them. That's not to say that if somebody takes a drag once that they're eternally doomed to be protector-less, but it's certainly a dangerous act in regard to the Dharmapalas, and not something you want to be doing if you want to have them on your side...and you do.
I think the rift in understanding here lies in the misunderstanding of exactly what protectors are. They are not simply aspects of our own enlightened mind, like a Sambhogakaya Yidam. They are real, tangible beings that we need to maintain our samaya with.
User avatar
JinpaRangdrol
 
Posts: 84
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2011 7:22 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby wisdom » Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:52 am

JinpaRangdrol wrote:
wisdom wrote:Granted there are people on this thread talking about running from smoke, or being attacked by demons for smoking a cigarette, and so forth.


I'm not quite sure why this seems like such an outlandish thing, at least for Tibetan Buddhists on this forum. Dharma Protectors are not just archetypes or superstitions. From a Vajrayana perspective, there really are protectors out there whose role is to protect us. They are external beings (as much as any of us are external to one another...while in essence there is no subject/object, from a relative perspective, there are individual beings) who were once gods or spirits, were subjugated by Guru Rinpoche (and occasionally by other Buddhas and Bodhisattvas), and were bound under oath to protect the Dharma and its' practitioners. One of the primary reasons that tobacco smoke is so "evil" is because these protectors no longer have the ability to protect you. If a practitioner smokes, the protectors basically abandon them. That's not to say that if somebody takes a drag once that they're eternally doomed to be protector-less, but it's certainly a dangerous act in regard to the Dharmapalas, and not something you want to be doing if you want to have them on your side...and you do.
I think the rift in understanding here lies in the misunderstanding of exactly what protectors are. They are not simply aspects of our own enlightened mind, like a Sambhogakaya Yidam. They are real, tangible beings that we need to maintain our samaya with.


Oh I fully agree in the objective existence of the protectors, and I believe that Virgo had the experience he says he had. I have enough experience with the objective spirit world to know of its power. I guess my question is why does tobacco have this quality, and not any other number of vices? I can smoke pot constantly by this theory, and still be protected, but one cigarette will exempt me from protection. Or if I am a perfect practitioner with perfect conduct, but walk into a bar where people are smoking, all the protectors will abandon me, and I will be left unprotected and unable to be helped? What about walking down the street, am I unprotected every time I walk past a smoker? Or at a bus stop? I guess my question is why do the protectors hate smoke this much, why are they unable to stand its presence?
User avatar
wisdom
 
Posts: 473
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2011 4:33 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Jangchup Donden » Wed Jan 18, 2012 1:58 am

wisdom wrote:
Jangchup Donden wrote:Would a balanced approach to rape and murder (not that I'm equating smoking with rape and murder) be to sometimes rape and murder, and sometimes not -- it's all good because you're taking a balanced approach to it?


Of course not. What I'm saying is that anything taken in moderation need not be some absolute evil. I had a McDonalds shake the other day because I wanted one. If I had one every day, it would be really unhealthy. The last time I had one was over a year ago, so I need not worry about the health risks associated with drinking what amounts to fat and sugar every day. If you drink too much water, you can actually die. This happened to a woman a few years back trying to win a gaming console on a radio show. The contest was to see who could drink the most water without peeing, and whoever did it would win. The woman drank like a gallon of water or something and died from over saturation. The point is everything is a poison if you consume too much of it, and many ills come also from not taking enough, then there is "everything in moderation", which is not meant to be taken to extremes of murder and rape, but rather applied using reasoning. Its reasonable to assume that if you smoked a cigarette every couple weeks, in general you would not harm your practice and you would not experience any ill side effects. Granted there are people on this thread talking about running from smoke, or being attacked by demons for smoking a cigarette, and so forth.


Well the question then is smoking more like a McDonalds shake, or is it more like heroin? Somethings you could argue that it's not really possible to participate in, in a balanced healthy manner. Personally, in terms of being a practicing Tibetan Buddhist, smoking falls much closer to the heroin category than the McDonalds shake category. But then again, I haven't gone to a McDonalds in years. :P
User avatar
Jangchup Donden
 
Posts: 216
Joined: Mon Jan 25, 2010 5:44 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Konchog1 » Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:26 am

wisdom wrote:Oh I fully agree in the objective existence of the protectors, and I believe that Virgo had the experience he says he had. I have enough experience with the objective spirit world to know of its power. I guess my question is why does tobacco have this quality, and not any other number of vices? I can smoke pot constantly by this theory, and still be protected, but one cigarette will exempt me from protection. Or if I am a perfect practitioner with perfect conduct, but walk into a bar where people are smoking, all the protectors will abandon me, and I will be left unprotected and unable to be helped? What about walking down the street, am I unprotected every time I walk past a smoker? Or at a bus stop? I guess my question is why do the protectors hate smoke this much, why are they unable to stand its presence?
Why does Surströmming smell bad to humans? Protectors hate the smell of tobacco and avoid people who smell like it. If you visit a smoky bar, just take a shower later.
Equanimity is the ground. Love is the moisture. Compassion is the seed. Bodhicitta is the result.

-Paraphrase of Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel citing the Guhyasamaja Tantra

"All memories and thoughts are the union of emptiness and knowing, the Mind.
Without attachment, self-liberating, like a snake in a knot.
Through the qualities of meditating in that way,
Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

-Ra Lotsawa, All-pervading Melodious Drumbeats
User avatar
Konchog1
 
Posts: 1296
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2011 4:30 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:28 am

JinpaRangdrol wrote:
Absolutely. Old-world Mahasiddhas were notorious for drinking alcohol, but never became intoxicated. Take Tilopa, Naropa, Marpa, and Milarepa, for instance. I'm not a Kagyupa, so I can't give you as much info about them as they could. But I can tell you that the 19th century Terton Do Khyentse Yeshe Dorje drank quite heavily, but was never drunk. There are many stories to attest to that.


I guess this is finally the time to tell the story of Dudjom Lingpa and tobacco. Dudjom Lingpa himself smoked cigarettes, quite frequently. As happens with the disciples of great Lamas, everyone started smoking, to imitate the Guru, thinking it was a good thing to do. . . and most probably enjoying it. Of course, it didn't take Dudjom Lingpa long to catch wind of what was happening, so he called a big gathering in the large assembly tent of all his disciples. He stood in front of them, and said "Hey, so I hear many of you have taken up smoking! " and they nodded their heads.. and he went on, "OK, so then let's all share a smoke together!"
He pulled out his cigarette and lit up, as did the rest of the group. Everyone took their drags, exhaled, etc. . . but they started to notice something odd about Dudjom Lingpa. He kept taking drags of his cigarette, but he was not exhaling. This went on for some time, and the longer it did the more everyone became uneasy, as this was very eccentric behavior from a quite wrathful Guru. Once he knew he had everyone's undivided attention, still not having exhaled once, he extended his arms and legs, at which time he "exhaled" all of the smoke he had inhaled from each of his fingers and his toes!
He then asked if anyone else there could do this. Of course, he got muted replies "no, we can't Rinpoche".
So he explained: "I only smoke tobacco because this substance will create terrible suffering in the future to vast numbers of sentient beings, and I am taking on and purifying some of this negative potential. . . "
". . . Is that what you all are doing when you smoke?" --
"No Rinpoche, of course we don't have this capacity" they replied.
And he made it very clear from then on that none of his disciples should engage in this activity unless they had his capacity. . .

Suffice it to say, in the Dudjom lineage smoking cigarettes is considered a very negative activity.
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
User avatar
Adamantine
Former staff member
 
Posts: 2954
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:09 am
Location: Space is the Place

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby heart » Wed Jan 18, 2012 5:30 am

Konchog1 wrote:Why does Surströmming smell bad to humans? Protectors hate the smell of tobacco and avoid people who smell like it. If you visit a smoky bar, just take a shower later.


Surströmming? An other Swede, or did it suddenly become popular somewhere else? Sure taste good anyway. :smile:

/magnus
"To reject practice by saying, 'it is conceptual!' is the path of fools. A tendency of the inexperienced and something to be avoided."
- Longchenpa
User avatar
heart
 
Posts: 3080
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 1:55 pm

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby heart » Wed Jan 18, 2012 6:12 am

Adamantine wrote:
JinpaRangdrol wrote:
Absolutely. Old-world Mahasiddhas were notorious for drinking alcohol, but never became intoxicated. Take Tilopa, Naropa, Marpa, and Milarepa, for instance. I'm not a Kagyupa, so I can't give you as much info about them as they could. But I can tell you that the 19th century Terton Do Khyentse Yeshe Dorje drank quite heavily, but was never drunk. There are many stories to attest to that.


I guess this is finally the time to tell the story of Dudjom Lingpa and tobacco. Dudjom Lingpa himself smoked cigarettes, quite frequently. As happens with the disciples of great Lamas, everyone started smoking, to imitate the Guru, thinking it was a good thing to do. . . and most probably enjoying it. Of course, it didn't take Dudjom Lingpa long to catch wind of what was happening, so he called a big gathering in the large assembly tent of all his disciples. He stood in front of them, and said "Hey, so I hear many of you have taken up smoking! " and they nodded their heads.. and he went on, "OK, so then let's all share a smoke together!"
He pulled out his cigarette and lit up, as did the rest of the group. Everyone took their drags, exhaled, etc. . . but they started to notice something odd about Dudjom Lingpa. He kept taking drags of his cigarette, but he was not exhaling. This went on for some time, and the longer it did the more everyone became uneasy, as this was very eccentric behavior from a quite wrathful Guru. Once he knew he had everyone's undivided attention, still not having exhaled once, he extended his arms and legs, at which time he "exhaled" all of the smoke he had inhaled from each of his fingers and his toes!
He then asked if anyone else there could do this. Of course, he got muted replies "no, we can't Rinpoche".
So he explained: "I only smoke tobacco because this substance will create terrible suffering in the future to vast numbers of sentient beings, and I am taking on and purifying some of this negative potential. . . "
". . . Is that what you all are doing when you smoke?" --
"No Rinpoche, of course we don't have this capacity" they replied.
And he made it very clear from then on that none of his disciples should engage in this activity unless they had his capacity. . .

Suffice it to say, in the Dudjom lineage smoking cigarettes is considered a very negative activity.


Heard the almost exact same story about Gendun Chöpel.

/magnus
"To reject practice by saying, 'it is conceptual!' is the path of fools. A tendency of the inexperienced and something to be avoided."
- Longchenpa
User avatar
heart
 
Posts: 3080
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 1:55 pm

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jan 18, 2012 6:58 am

heart wrote:
Adamantine wrote:
JinpaRangdrol wrote:
Absolutely. Old-world Mahasiddhas were notorious for drinking alcohol, but never became intoxicated. Take Tilopa, Naropa, Marpa, and Milarepa, for instance. I'm not a Kagyupa, so I can't give you as much info about them as they could. But I can tell you that the 19th century Terton Do Khyentse Yeshe Dorje drank quite heavily, but was never drunk. There are many stories to attest to that.


I guess this is finally the time to tell the story of Dudjom Lingpa and tobacco. Dudjom Lingpa himself smoked cigarettes, quite frequently. As happens with the disciples of great Lamas, everyone started smoking, to imitate the Guru, thinking it was a good thing to do. . . and most probably enjoying it. Of course, it didn't take Dudjom Lingpa long to catch wind of what was happening, so he called a big gathering in the large assembly tent of all his disciples. He stood in front of them, and said "Hey, so I hear many of you have taken up smoking! " and they nodded their heads.. and he went on, "OK, so then let's all share a smoke together!"
He pulled out his cigarette and lit up, as did the rest of the group. Everyone took their drags, exhaled, etc. . . but they started to notice something odd about Dudjom Lingpa. He kept taking drags of his cigarette, but he was not exhaling. This went on for some time, and the longer it did the more everyone became uneasy, as this was very eccentric behavior from a quite wrathful Guru. Once he knew he had everyone's undivided attention, still not having exhaled once, he extended his arms and legs, at which time he "exhaled" all of the smoke he had inhaled from each of his fingers and his toes!
He then asked if anyone else there could do this. Of course, he got muted replies "no, we can't Rinpoche".
So he explained: "I only smoke tobacco because this substance will create terrible suffering in the future to vast numbers of sentient beings, and I am taking on and purifying some of this negative potential. . . "
". . . Is that what you all are doing when you smoke?" --
"No Rinpoche, of course we don't have this capacity" they replied.
And he made it very clear from then on that none of his disciples should engage in this activity unless they had his capacity. . .

Suffice it to say, in the Dudjom lineage smoking cigarettes is considered a very negative activity.


Heard the almost exact same story about Gendun Chöpel.

/magnus


Do you think that one is true or just someone re-telling the story of Dudjom Lingpa and grafting it on to Gendun Chopel?
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
User avatar
Adamantine
Former staff member
 
Posts: 2954
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:09 am
Location: Space is the Place

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Lingpupa » Wed Jan 18, 2012 10:10 am

I could be wrong, of course, but I would be surprised if cigarette smoking was widespread in 19th century Tibet. Snuff, perhaps, again, I don't know, but cigarettes?
Do you think that one is true or just someone re-telling the story of Dudjom Lingpa and grafting it on to Gendun Chopel?

If anything it strikes me as more likely (I must stress again that this is not much more than an educated hunch) that the story might have been first attached to a figure of Gendun Chopel's time and then grafted back to Dudjom Lingpa.
All the best
Alex Wilding
Benchen and Back digital edition now on Amazon - see http://tinyurl.com/78rdcoy
User avatar
Lingpupa
 
Posts: 52
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2011 10:13 am

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 18, 2012 10:31 am

Ahhh... Gendun Chopel! Everybody's favorite mad Maoist monk (and an avid smoker, drinker and fornicator!)
untitled.png
untitled.png (42.31 KiB) Viewed 941 times
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Global Moderator
 
Posts: 9272
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: Smoking tobacco

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jan 18, 2012 10:35 am

Nah, this isn't grafted onto Dudjom Lingpa.

Smoking tobacco was introduced to China in the 16th century. The introduction of this technique is what led Chinese people to begin smoking opium instead of just ingesting it. So smoking tobacco already started to pervade China all the way back then and influenced the culture greatly. Then in 1858 the Treaty of Tianjin allowed cigarettes to be imported into China duty-free, and the distribution was exponentially increased.

Dudjom Lingpa was not some ordinary person. He wasn't picking up a habit for the hell of it. He knew how more and more pervasive it was going to become and he was engaging in bodhisattva conduct. Do you really think it would have been hard for him to procure cigarettes?

Let's not be so small minded.

I was told this account directly from a Dudjom family member.
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
User avatar
Adamantine
Former staff member
 
Posts: 2954
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 7:09 am
Location: Space is the Place

PreviousNext

Return to Nyingma

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: conebeckham, Lhasa, yan kong, zerwe and 13 guests

>