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Buddhism & Psychedelics

KeromeKerome Love, love is mysteryThe Continent Veteran

I came across this in Zen1 space which @lobster linked, and I’d apparently missed this completely back in August

https://zen1.space/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=484
https://www.lionsroar.com/the-new-wave-of-psychedelics-in-buddhist-practice/
http://hardcorezen.info/lions-roar-has-killed-buddhism/5945

It’s all vaguely amusing, and here in the notoriously drug-friendly Netherlands we had no idea you guys were getting so serious about mixing spirituality and psychedelics. It does all seem to be very much against the 5th precept tough, pity about that.

But I have to say, Buddhist meditation on ayahuasca? Sounds trippy man...
The 1970’s ride again.

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Comments

  • VastmindVastmind Memphis, TN Veteran
    edited January 10

    The 2 cannot go hand in hand. The 5th precept is there for a reason. How can you become more aware and mindful when you’re high? I spent many years smoking lots of weed, and never tried to sugar coat it to myself. I knew it wasn’t conducive to what I was trying to achieve. People will find all kinds of ways to justify doing things that are socially, spiritually, or otherwise deemed unacceptable. It goes against Buddhist Basics.

    Kundo
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    I'm with Brad Warner. And I don't even think his smoking marijuana is acceptable.

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran
    edited January 10

    The precepts are guidelines for Buddhists to follow as best as they can

    To refrain from intoxicants mean just that to some Buddhist and this includes 'alcohol' 'tobacco' ( nicotine fix) and other mind altering substances...

    But some Buddhists don't see a problem with having a glass or two of wine and or beer or the odd shot of spirits ...and some don't see a problem in having the odd puff or two of ganja ...or the occasional partake of psychedelics ...

    On a personal level I no longer partake in any intoxicants( haven't done in many years)...So should I be judging others by my standards ?

    Or is it up to the individual to make up their own mind as to what is skillful and what is unskillful ?

    Different tokes for different folks

    ( I know I'm beginning to sound like a broken record...but it's such a catchy intoxicating song ;) ;) )

    David
  • meanwhile ...
    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Psychedelic_Experience

    Bonus off track

    ... and now back to the prefects precepts

    David
  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the void Veteran

    I'm not totally up on the topic or read what the articles say but I believe its all comes down to the context. If they are used recreationally then I would say that it does go against the 5th precept. But if they are used in the context of a spiritual ceremony or therapeutic environment then I think the research is showing their use can be beneficial.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/17/upshot/can-psychedelics-be-therapy-allow-research-to-find-out.html

    lobsterShoshinDavid
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    Psychiatrists have been experimenting with psychedelics on their patients for quite a while...and volunteers AKA human guinea pigs

  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @Vastmind said:
    The 2 cannot go hand in hand. The 5th precept is there for a reason. How can you become more aware and mindful when you’re high? I spent many years smoking lots of weed, and never tried to sugar coat it to myself. I knew it wasn’t conducive to what I was trying to achieve. People will find all kinds of ways to justify doing things that are socially, spiritually, or otherwise deemed unacceptable. It goes against Buddhist Basics.

    Completely agree. No ifs or buts 👍🏻👍🏻

    lobster
  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran
    edited January 11

    My stance is a bit more flexible, I see some hints of potentially skilful means. I find it interesting that psychedelics can make the mind move in new and unexpected ways. It is possible to learn from that about its spiritual dimension, perhaps rediscover emotions that you haven’t felt for a long time. So I can see some potential uses for these kinds of drugs, taken in great moderation and properly used to fuel insight.

    Therapeutically like @person I’ve heard there have been a number of breakthroughs which can lead to new treatments which would be very beneficial for people with ptsd, anxiety, depression, and other mental illnesses.

    I don’t necessarily think that it’s use goes against the spirit of the precepts, as there is little chance of one becoming addicted to psychedelics or embarking on a tour which causes long-term heedlessness. It is not really right to compare psychedelics with weed or alcohol. However it is against the letter of the precepts, as you do go on a ‘magical mystery tour’ where you are experiencing the universe differently for a few hours.

  • SE25WallSE25Wall London Explorer
    edited January 11

    i very much enjoyed all my experiences as a young adult on psychedelics (the half dozen or so times we could get hold of them). they are ruthless and powerful and i wouldn't go near them now, now i have learnt in proceeding decades how fragile my mind can be. but were they awesome, mind expanding, beautiful exhilarating experiences - you bet ya. also the kind of youthful ritual that surrounds them is intoxicating - the deal down a back ally from some romantically nefarious character, the excitement when you finally get hold of some, the preparation of a few pints down the pub to settle the nerves, the exhileration of going from sober to the first tinglings and tremors of the drug kicking in, the feeling of utter comradeship with those who you are taking with, knowing you are going on a special journey, and the walking the streets together, experiencing it. this was all very good but like all good things, and especially with this good thing, it is so easy to abuse and then it abuses you. you have to be wise or lucky with drugs, we were lucky to come down (some people i dont think ever come down, in one way or another).

    Shoshin
  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran

    @Kerome said:
    we had no idea you guys were getting so serious about mixing spirituality and psychedelics.

    Most aren't. It's a very small minority that are. Brad Warner exaggerates a lot, that's kinda his thing!

    lobster
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran

    I'm not sure how people lump cannabis in there with alcohol and drugs people actually die from (cocaine and opiods) let alone with psychedelic drugs like LSD. As nice as a doobie would go with psychedelic drugs, weed itself isn't really considered psychedelic and nobody has ever died as a direct result of ingesting cannabis like we have from cigarettes, booze and opiates.

    On topic, I wouldn't do that stuff these days (psychedelic journeys) but if not for the psychedelic experience, I may not have been turned on to Alan Watt who connected Taoism to Buddhism for me for the first time (no internet back then). Without that trigger, I may not have figured out a certain koan I had been carrying since I was 6 and I may not have figured out that I am Buddhist.

    Now, the psychedelic experience can indeed cause heedlessness which is why one would be well advised to take heed beforehand and lock doors, turn off phones etc. I don't say that to condone the use of drugs but to condone being safe.

    Shoshin
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran
    edited January 12

    Buddhism & Psychedelics

    It would seem that there's no escaping the 'fact', many Westerners during the 60s 70s 80s (and I guess the 90s) who showed interest in Eastern philosophies did so through psychedelic eyes...

    ...having first experienced acid and other psych altering drugs and saw in Eastern philosophies such as Hinduism Taoism & Buddhism a more natural( less brain cell damaging) way to experience ultimate reality ...( especially when reading about some of the mind blowing meditation experiences of some of the Yogis)...

    The psychedelic path that led some to the Buddha Dharma had for many of those individuals been beneficial/life changing...and the same psychedelic path may have led some to the asylum....also life changing....( been there and done that)...
    ...and whether one likes or dislikes or agrees or disagrees with Mr T Leary & Mr A Watts's philosophy on drugs and what not, when it came to the mind's experience .... Mr Watts (in particular) was great at effing the ineffable in plain English.... :)

    When it comes to the psychedelic experience ( for some people)...Don't throw the baby out with the bath water

    One could say for them it was a karmic kick in the right direction...so to speak...

    lobster
  • SE25WallSE25Wall London Explorer

    this society, this culture, the western world, is almost unsustainable without some sort of instant relief - be it LSD, coffee, or herion. look around, who wouldn't want to escape now and then? its probably why this society functions reasonably well, the plethora of means of escape available.

  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the void Veteran

    @SE25Wall said:
    this society, this culture, the western world, is almost unsustainable without some sort of instant relief - be it LSD, coffee, or herion. look around, who wouldn't want to escape now and then? its probably why this society functions reasonably well, the plethora of means of escape available.

    A measure proposed to decide how just and prosperous a society is, is to take any society and imagine being born into that society not knowing where or who you would be born as, compare being at the top and the bottom society to society. Certainly the western world is very far from perfect, but I think we should ask ourselves if there really are many or any other societies throughout history that you would rather be born into with a roll of the dice. Its fair if you genuinely do have a place in mind. For me though it might be in a pre agricultural hunting tribe, otherwise it is the modern west, and part of the west are the escapes that didn't exist in other places and times (how easy is it to get coffee here as compared to 16th century Russia).

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran
    edited January 13

    Thats what TV is for, imagining you are in 16th century Russia, another fine escape mechanism. But im not sure I could cope with another sub-Aristotlean education, If I was reborn at the rol of a die. I can barely cope with this life with regular periods of complete unconsciousness (“sleep”).

  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran

    @David said:
    I'm not sure how people lump cannabis in there with alcohol and drugs people actually die from (cocaine and opiods) let alone with psychedelic drugs like LSD. As nice as a doobie would go with psychedelic drugs, weed itself isn't really considered psychedelic and nobody has ever died as a direct result of ingesting cannabis like we have from cigarettes, booze and opiates.

    Cannabis is lumped in there because of the effect it has on the mind. Buddhism sets a very high bar when it comes to one's state of mind. It goes way beyond physical effects of dying, etc. Sure, it's not even close to being as bad as heroin, but it's still not conducive to practicing dharma.

    KundoVastmind
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited January 13

    @seeker242 said:

    @David said:
    I'm not sure how people lump cannabis in there with alcohol and drugs people actually die from (cocaine and opiods) let alone with psychedelic drugs like LSD. As nice as a doobie would go with psychedelic drugs, weed itself isn't really considered psychedelic and nobody has ever died as a direct result of ingesting cannabis like we have from cigarettes, booze and opiates.

    Cannabis is lumped in there because of the effect it has on the mind. Buddhism sets a very high bar when it comes to one's state of mind. It goes way beyond physical effects of dying, etc. Sure, it's not even close to being as bad as heroin, but it's still not conducive to practicing dharma.

    For you, you mean. Some people use it medically and in many cases it makes dharma easier to practice.

    Partying or having a buzz at the time one sits down on the cushion is not conducive to practicing dharma. Not the same thing as using it as a tool to cope with health factors or get a new perspective.

    First off, this thread is about psychedelics and cannabis is not psychedelic.

    Secondly, unless you ingest cannabis in a controlled environment you really have no clue as to its effects on the mind or the body. Just ask Bruce Lee.

    Personally, having a glass of wine is far less conducive to practicing the dharma than a doobie but it's the weed growing out of the ground that gets the worse rep than the actual poison. Cannabis does not cause heedlessness. If anything it makes one more cautious. Alcohol has no benefits at all except for the buzz.

    Heck, I smoke cannabis (mindfully mind you) and I've been approved to donate a kidney.

    The 5th precept warns about drinking, not cannabis. Alcohol is mentioned but cannabis although around longer, had to be inferred by moralists.

    If one has ingested any alcohol, tobacco, pain medication of any kind, they have absolutely no ground to stand on while poo-pooing pot, lol.

    You won't get a decent meditation session going if you're high but the same is true if you've taken a pain pill or had a wee glass of wine or even if you've had too much sugar or caffeine.

    Too much of anything is never good. Did you know we can overdose on water?

    It's all about scheduling, moderation and overall mindfulness but again, cannabis is not psychedelic so it has no real business being brought up on this thread.

    I guess I had a bit to say on the matter after all. I wasn't going to bother but ah, wth?

  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @David said:.

    For you, you mean. Some people use it medically and in many cases it makes dharma easier to practice.

    At the risk of another sh!tfight......

    Cannabis is a depressant (and I know you’re knowledgeable on its properties so I’m not being condescending.... just in case you assume I am) as is alcohol and some prescription medications. Depressants are never conducive to Dharma practise. Those who claim cannabis is, are IMO, deluding themselves or don’t understand/experience actual benefits or progress in meditation or the Dharma. I’m not being holier than thou or bitchy about it. I honesty believe these people are incorrect.

    Partying or having a buzz at the time one sits down on the cushion is not conducive to practicing dharma. Not the same thing as using it as a tool to cope with health factors or get a new perspective.

    I agree with the first sentence.

    First off, this thread is about psychedelics and cannabis is not psychedelic.

    Secondly, unless you ingest cannabis in a controlled environment you really have no clue as to its effects on the mind or the body. Just ask Bruce Lee.

    I assume you mean knowing everything in the particular joint or cone smoked? Even then you can never know 100% each time exactly how your body will react. This I’ve been told by a few regular smokers I know (one relative, two friends).

    Personally, having a glass of wine is far less conducive to practicing the dharma than a doobie but it's the weed growing out of the ground that gets the worse rep than the actual poison. Cannabis does not cause heedlessness. If anything it makes one more cautious. Alcohol has no benefits at all except for the buzz.

    I personally think both are just as bad for Dharma practice, but limited experience with cannabis leads me to disagree with you about cannabis and heedlessness. However, I can’t have your experience and you can’t have mine so agree to disagree.

    The 5th precept warns about drinking, not cannabis. Alcohol is mentioned but cannabis although around longer, had to be inferred by moralists.

    That’s kind of reaching there a bit, and I get why.

    If one has ingested any alcohol, tobacco, pain medication of any kind, they have absolutely no ground to stand on while poo-pooing pot, lol.

    Dude, ingesting pain meds for my disease literally saved my life in hospital. I note your lol so will assume you’re being a smartass there (which is cool too).

    You won't get a decent meditation session going if you're high but the same is true if you've taken a pain pill or had a wee glass of wine or even if you've had too much sugar or caffeine.

    Completely 💯 % agree.

    It's all about scheduling, moderation and overall mindfulness but again, cannabis is not psychedelic so it has no real business being brought up on this thread.

    Hmmm perhaps re the being brought up.

    I guess I had a bit to say on the matter after all. I wasn't going to bother but ah, wth?

    Same here 👍🏻👍🏻

    personlobster
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran

    @Kundo said:

    @David said:.

    For you, you mean. Some people use it medically and in many cases it makes dharma easier to practice.

    At the risk of another sh!tfight......

    Cannabis is a depressant (and I know you’re knowledgeable on its properties so I’m not being condescending.... just in case you assume I am) as is alcohol and some prescription medications. Depressants are never conducive to Dharma practise. Those who claim cannabis is, are IMO, deluding themselves or don’t understand/experience actual benefits or progress in meditation or the Dharma. I’m not being holier than thou or bitchy about it. I honesty believe these people are incorrect.

    Partying or having a buzz at the time one sits down on the cushion is not conducive to practicing dharma. Not the same thing as using it as a tool to cope with health factors or get a new perspective.

    I agree with the first sentence.

    First off, this thread is about psychedelics and cannabis is not psychedelic.

    Secondly, unless you ingest cannabis in a controlled environment you really have no clue as to its effects on the mind or the body. Just ask Bruce Lee.

    I assume you mean knowing everything in the particular joint or cone smoked? Even then you can never know 100% each time exactly how your body will react. This I’ve been told by a few regular smokers I know (one relative, two friends).

    Personally, having a glass of wine is far less conducive to practicing the dharma than a doobie but it's the weed growing out of the ground that gets the worse rep than the actual poison. Cannabis does not cause heedlessness. If anything it makes one more cautious. Alcohol has no benefits at all except for the buzz.

    I personally think both are just as bad for Dharma practice, but limited experience with cannabis leads me to disagree with you about cannabis and heedlessness. However, I can’t have your experience and you can’t have mine so agree to disagree.

    The 5th precept warns about drinking, not cannabis. Alcohol is mentioned but cannabis although around longer, had to be inferred by moralists.

    That’s kind of reaching there a bit, and I get why.

    If one has ingested any alcohol, tobacco, pain medication of any kind, they have absolutely no ground to stand on while poo-pooing pot, lol.

    Dude, ingesting pain meds for my disease literally saved my life in hospital. I note your lol so will assume you’re being a smartass there (which is cool too).

    You won't get a decent meditation session going if you're high but the same is true if you've taken a pain pill or had a wee glass of wine or even if you've had too much sugar or caffeine.

    Completely 💯 % agree.

    It's all about scheduling, moderation and overall mindfulness but again, cannabis is not psychedelic so it has no real business being brought up on this thread.

    Hmmm perhaps re the being brought up.

    I guess I had a bit to say on the matter after all. I wasn't going to bother but ah, wth?

    Same here 👍🏻👍🏻

    Cannabis is still not psychedelic and so cannabis still has no business being demonised on this thread.

    But I'm glad you can get this off your chest as off topic as it may be.

  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran
    edited January 14

    *deleted due to expected response 🙄🙄

    lobsterShoshinDavid
  • @Kundo said:
    *deleted due to expected response 🙄

    Well said <3
    eh ... unsaid ... 🌈

    Noble mind, body and speech silence
    Deal me in B)

    and now not back to the warped clear thinking 🤔

  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran

    Hey slightly off topic ....but anyhow....
    Hmm when 'thinking' about intoxicants...

    We have no need to take intoxicants to become intoxicated...Our mind is quite capable of doing this without help from any other natural or artificial substance/source...

    The mind that becomes charmed by its own thoughts, is a very intoxicating & explosive cocktail that leads to disaster

    Kundolobster
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    I'm of the opinion that anything which is capable of altering a mind-set and affecting the way the mind processes experience, is a no-no. And that includes - as far as I am concerned - cannabis.
    It affects different people in different ways. But the emphasis is on 'affect' here. I don't give a damn whether it's a psychedelic 'drug' or not. And I am very well aware that its use in medicine is becoming more and more regular, approved and recognised, but in many cases it is now administered therapeutically, in an altered chemical state.
    Smoking pot affects a person.
    And that effect in my opinion, is detrimental to the process of maintaining a clear Mind (Capital M).

    KundoVastmindlobster
  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited January 14

    Whether you guys want to admit it or not @federica alcohol does WAY more damage than pot. WAY, WAY more. Body and mind.

    No offense but is it because you enjoy a glass every now and then? Does alcohol make one hypocritical when it comes to pot? That can't be good for the Mind can it?

    @federica said:
    I'm of the opinion that anything which is capable of altering a mind-set and affecting the way the mind processes experience, is a no-no. And that includes - as far as I am concerned - cannabis.

    It also includes wine but wine isn't psychedelic either.

    I guess we only have to stay on topic if we disagree with the majority then?

  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited January 14

    @Kundo said:
    *deleted due to expected response 🙄🙄

    So you expected to be called out on your being off topic?

    I'm not sure why you were on about cannabis in the first place.

    Are you under the impression that it is a psychedelic drug? If not, why cannabis when there are far better examples of harmful substances?

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    @federica said:
    I'm of the opinion that anything which is capable of altering a mind-set and affecting the way the mind processes experience, is a no-no. And that includes - as far as I am concerned - cannabis.

    So how would you feel about antidepressant medication or antipsychotics? Those alter the way in which the mind processes experience, yet can be lifesavers for people with various conditions and are often taken for years or decades.

    How should people with those conditions and medications approach practice and meditation? Should the medications be treated as against the precepts, in your opinion?

  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited January 14

    @Vastmind said:
    The 2 cannot go hand in hand. The 5th precept is there for a reason. How can you become more aware and mindful when you’re high? I spent many years smoking lots of weed, and never tried to sugar coat it to myself. I knew it wasn’t conducive to what I was trying to achieve. People will find all kinds of ways to justify doing things that are socially, spiritually, or otherwise deemed unacceptable. It goes against Buddhist Basics.

    So you have zero experience with psychedelics and have only used pot for partying? You never used it medicinally then obviously.

    How quick we are to judge that which we don't understand.

  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran

    @David said:

    @seeker242 said:

    @David said:
    I'm not sure how people lump cannabis in there with alcohol and drugs people actually die from (cocaine and opiods) let alone with psychedelic drugs like LSD. As nice as a doobie would go with psychedelic drugs, weed itself isn't really considered psychedelic and nobody has ever died as a direct result of ingesting cannabis like we have from cigarettes, booze and opiates.

    Cannabis is lumped in there because of the effect it has on the mind. Buddhism sets a very high bar when it comes to one's state of mind. It goes way beyond physical effects of dying, etc. Sure, it's not even close to being as bad as heroin, but it's still not conducive to practicing dharma.

    For you, you mean.

    Not just by me, most all Buddhist teachers around the world agree. They also agree that the 5th precept covers cannabis and other drugs. Medical use is irrelevant. The topic is about recreational/spiritual use. Buddhism does not use drugs to bring about spiritual progress. If you are doing that fine, but it's not Buddhism.

  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran

    @seeker242 said:

    @David said:

    @seeker242 said:

    @David said:
    I'm not sure how people lump cannabis in there with alcohol and drugs people actually die from (cocaine and opiods) let alone with psychedelic drugs like LSD. As nice as a doobie would go with psychedelic drugs, weed itself isn't really considered psychedelic and nobody has ever died as a direct result of ingesting cannabis like we have from cigarettes, booze and opiates.

    Cannabis is lumped in there because of the effect it has on the mind. Buddhism sets a very high bar when it comes to one's state of mind. It goes way beyond physical effects of dying, etc. Sure, it's not even close to being as bad as heroin, but it's still not conducive to practicing dharma.

    For you, you mean.

    Not just by me, most all Buddhist teachers around the world agree. They also agree that the 5th precept covers cannabis and other drugs. Medical use is irrelevant. The topic is about recreational/spiritual use. Buddhism does not use drugs to bring about spiritual progress. If you are doing that fine, but it's not Buddhism.

    I did it years ago and found it conducive to the practice at the time.

    I wouldn't do it now.

    But again, cannabis is not psychedelic.

    Why is that so hard to understand?

  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran
    edited January 14

    @David said:
    But again, cannabis is not psychedelic.

    Why is that so hard to understand?

    I was discussing the usage of mind or consciousness altering substances for advancing spiritual progress. In that context, it doesn't matter if cannabis meets the technical definition of "psychedelic". The article the OP posted mentions cannabis as well as other substances. It's not limited to the technical definition.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @David said:
    Whether you guys want to admit it or not @federica alcohol does WAY more damage than pot. WAY, WAY more. Body and mind.

    Where did I say it doesn't?

    No offense but is it because you enjoy a glass every now and then? Does alcohol make one hypocritical when it comes to pot? That can't be good for the Mind can it?

    I don't drink. I HAVE drunk, which is principally one of the major reasons I DON'T drink.
    No offense taken.

    @federica said:
    I'm of the opinion that anything which is capable of altering a mind-set and affecting the way the mind processes experience, is a no-no. And that includes - as far as I am concerned - cannabis.

    It also includes wine but wine isn't psychedelic either.

    So what?

    I guess we only have to stay on topic if we disagree with the majority then?

    No, but I think it would be healthy for you to review your current opinion and consider, in the face of so many nay-sayers, that you may be in the minority.
    I'm not trying to change your mind for you, neither is anyone else. You can think and believe whatever you want.
    We have expressed opinions which are contrary to yours.

    What you do with that is your choice.

    Kundo
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @Kerome said: So how would you feel about antidepressant medication or antipsychotics? >Those alter the way in which the mind processes experience, yet can be lifesavers for people with various conditions and are often taken for years or decades.

    How should people with those conditions and medications approach practice and meditation? Should the medications be treated as against the precepts, in your opinion?

    Oh good grief...
    If you were to peruse my comments in the countless, varied plethora of threads we have hitherto had discussing the 5th recept, you would have seen that I have not, and never have, condemned use of therapeutic drugs required medically by the patient.

    OK?
    Let's not chuck stuff into the mix that has no business being there. We're talking recreational here.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @David said:

    @Kundo said:
    *deleted due to expected response 🙄🙄

    So you expected to be called out on your being off topic?

    She wasn't off topic. She just chose to not shoot her mouth off.

    I'm not sure why you were on about cannabis in the first place.

    Because it's a mind-altering substance.

    Are you under the impression that it is a psychedelic drug? If not, why cannabis when there are far better examples of harmful substances?

    Because it is harmful to some people. I know someone who is reduced to a former shadow of his former self through use of Pot. He is no longer the bright, vivacious, energetic, extrovert person he was, but in brief, a total nervous wreck. And yes, it's all down to cannabis use.

    Kundo
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited January 14

    @David said:

    @Vastmind said:
    The 2 cannot go hand in hand. The 5th precept is there for a reason. How can you become more aware and mindful when you’re high? I spent many years smoking lots of weed, and never tried to sugar coat it to myself. I knew it wasn’t conducive to what I was trying to achieve. People will find all kinds of ways to justify doing things that are socially, spiritually, or otherwise deemed unacceptable. It goes against Buddhist Basics.

    So you have zero experience with psychedelics and have only used pot for partying? You never used it medicinally then obviously.

    I have used it medicinally, but in an altered-compound state. And that's the only way I'm prepared to take it. Why the hell would I indulge in and experiment with something when I have absolutely no guarantee or evidence that it won't affect me badly?

    How quick we are to judge that which we don't understand.

    How slow some are to accept that however strongly they feel, they may - MAY - just be wrong.

    Kundo
  • ajhayesajhayes Northern Michigan Veteran

    For me, from my own experience, I know the harm that substance use/abuse can bring. I also base my argument on the 5th precept. I know that there are some people who can use substances and be just fine, and more power to them. However, I think that ultimately, it's more risk than reward.

    If one is determined to use a psychedelic, though, who am I to say that there may not be some benefit from it (for someone else). I can only speak for myself.

    The thing I would keep in mind is:

    Two men wanted to get to the top of the mountain, one climbed and the other took a helicopter. Naturally the man who took the helicopter got there first. He missed the experience that the other man got by climbing. The journey is more important than the destination.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    @federica said:

    @Kerome said: So how would you feel about antidepressant medication or antipsychotics? Those alter the way in which the mind processes experience, yet can be lifesavers for people with various conditions and are often taken for years or decades.

    How should people with those conditions and medications approach practice and meditation? Should the medications be treated as against the precepts, in your opinion?

    Oh good grief...
    If you were to peruse my comments in the countless, varied plethora of threads we have hitherto had discussing the 5th recept, you would have seen that I have not, and never have, condemned use of therapeutic drugs required medically by the patient.

    OK?
    Let's not chuck stuff into the mix that has no business being there. We're talking recreational here.

    Well, my question was not really about whether you choose to condemn medication use, more whether you as an experienced Buddhist had a view on this that you might like to share?

    The OP was more about the spiritual use of psychedelics as part of practice, not so much recreational use, but I reckon the more-or-less involuntary use of psychotropic medication does touch on the issues being discussed.

    It’s a difficult issue. You can choose to reduce dosages to the minimum that might be necessary, or you can choose to do your damnedest to get off the medication (potentially causing months of off-work sickness time with no guarantee of success), or you can just leave it at the physician-advised dose.

    Either way taking some dosage of these meds is going to affect the clarity of mind with which one approaches concentration or meditation.

  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran
    edited January 14

    This topic rears its head regularly and ALWAYS ends with the two camps "hotly debating" the issue around the fifth precept. And really, we all know how this will end but still go ahead - nice example of samsara in action 😐

    SE25Wall
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @Kerome said: ...Well, my question was not really about whether you choose to condemn medication use, more whether you as an experienced Buddhist had a view on this that you might like to share?

    I'm sorry, I didn't get that gist from your question, I apologise if I misinterpreted your intention in asking....
    When a dug is medically, professionally prescribed by a qualified medical practitioner, because its use will relieve and alleviate any mental condition the patient is suffering, there is no question in my mind that use of those drugs are both legitimate and justified. I hope that clarifies my position, it's one I have always held... :)

    The OP was more about the spiritual use of psychedelics as part of practice, not so much recreational use, but I reckon the more-or-less involuntary use of psychotropic medication does touch on the issues being discussed.

    Not sure what you mean by 'more-or-less involuntary use'...

    It’s a difficult issue. You can choose to reduce dosages to the minimum that might be necessary, or you can choose to do your damnedest to get off the medication (potentially causing months of off-work sickness time with no guarantee of success), or you can just leave it at the physician-advised dose.

    Either way taking some dosage of these meds is going to affect the clarity of mind with which one approaches concentration or meditation.

    Prescribed use of necessary drugs is not up for discussion here. It's off-topic.
    If they have to be taken, it's a given they don't fall within the 5th Precept Guidance.

  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited January 15

    @federica said:

    @David said:

    @Kundo said:
    *deleted due to expected response 🙄🙄

    So you expected to be called out on your being off topic?

    She wasn't off topic. She just chose to not shoot her mouth off.

    She was off topic as the thread is about psychedelic drugs, not cannabis.

    I'm not sure why you were on about cannabis in the first place.

    Because it's a mind-altering substance.

    Are you under the impression that it is a psychedelic drug? If not, why cannabis when there are far better examples of harmful substances?

    Because it is harmful to some people. I know someone who is reduced to a former shadow of his former self through use of Pot. He is no longer the bright, vivacious, energetic, extrovert person he was, but in brief, a total nervous wreck. And yes, it's all down to cannabis use.

    Ok and I stepped in a piece of my oldest friends liver solely due to drink. Too much of anything is a bad thing. I happen to use cannabis for my sleep disorder and chronic headaches as I cannot tolerate anti inflammatories.

    However, none of that is relevant in a thread about the spiritual use of psychedelics. Just because you don't like the stuff doesn't mean it can be classed as a psychedelic nor has there been a trend of Buddhists going on a spiritual journey with cannabis. We're talking LSD and stuff like that.

    I'm not upset nor do I feel I'm out of line. I'm just baffled that none of you see how blatantly biased you sound.

  • JeffreyJeffrey Veteran
    edited January 15

    What is the definition of 'psychedelic' anyhow? I seriously don't know. I know that marijuana affects perception of time and senses and feelings and thoughts. But I don't know what the definition of psychedelic is. And sometimes definitions can vary as they are set by convention usually. Interestingly I am from Michigan USA and it has recently been decriminalized for our state this falls election. I still haven't seen it on supermarket shelves though. I am still curious if they are going to put it next to the salty snacks or breakfast cereal aisle.

  • DavidDavid some guy Veteran
    edited January 15

    @Jeffrey a quick google search will clear it up. I still don't know how to link but we are talking things that make you hallucinate and go on "trips". Peyote, LSD, PCP, magic mushrooms... Cannabis is not in that class nor does it affect people like that.

  • From what I recall it does not cause hallucination but changes the experience of something you already experience. Like movies or even natural scenery etc. So for example it can make time seem to be slowed down.

  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @David said:
    She was off topic as the thread is about psychedelic drugs, not cannabis.

    I was just answering you mate. And I deleted my answer because you've fallen back into the same pattern. Any non pot smoker is automatically attacking and it's really old. THAT'S why I deleted my response. And your reactions since have shown I was right in expecting the response I and others have gotten....

    And I'm not mad either. Just tired of the same old same old.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    @David said:
    @Jeffrey a quick google search will clear it up. I still don't know how to link but we are talking things that make you hallucinate and go on "trips". Peyote, LSD, PCP, magic mushrooms... Cannabis is not in that class nor does it affect people like that.

    Indeed. But its interesting that the article specifically mentions the combination of Ayahuasca and meditation. Ayahuasca has the reputation of often teaching people lessons about their lives, so it’s an interesting choice.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @David said:...Ok and I stepped in a piece of my oldest friends liver solely due to drink. Too much of anything is a bad thing. I happen to use cannabis for my sleep disorder and chronic headaches as I cannot tolerate anti inflammatories.

    Yes, I suspected as much, I know it's a great relief to many who suffer from specific disorders, which is why Cannabis is being more and more widely used as a medicinal aid, and is now being marketed as such.

    However, none of that is relevant in a thread about the spiritual use of psychedelics. Just because you don't like the stuff doesn't mean it can be classed as a psychedelic nor has there been a trend of Buddhists going on a spiritual journey with cannabis. We're talking LSD and stuff like that.

    You're failing to grasp the point: While the thread title speaks of psychedelics, people have been discussing the 5th Precept and its content, and thus, cannabis has been included. Nobody here has made any claims as to its likeness to any other substance, but has held it as a substance in its own right. You keep banging the "it's not as bad as this stuff" drum, but nobody is saying it is. We're merely adding it as a not-really-acceptable vehicle.

    Hopefully, that chestnut's cleared up...

    I'm not upset nor do I feel I'm out of line. I'm just baffled that none of you see how blatantly biased you sound.

    About as biased as anyone would sound if they had someone in front of them absolutely, categorically, emphatically and stubbornly insisting that Santa Claus exists.

  • SE25WallSE25Wall London Explorer

    This is why i don't follow buddhism as if it was some profound word of god or the universe.

    psychedelics have, overall, been great for mankind and i don't really care what the buddha said about them. and i don't think he'd care that i didn't care, either :)

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    @SE25Wall said:
    psychedelics have, overall, been great for mankind

    I think I largely agree with that. They certainly fuelled a cultural change in direction in the 1960’s and 70’s, and contributed a lot of thinking and feeling towards a more loving universe. I think people as they gain maturity get stuck in a certain materialistic thinking which contributes towards depression, and psychedelics can lift you out of that pit into different modes of thinking.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @SE25Wall said:
    This is why i don't follow buddhism as if it was some profound word of god or the universe.

    psychedelics have, overall, been great for mankind and i don't really care what the buddha said about them. and i don't think he'd care that i didn't care, either :)

    Nobody cares, that would imply a judgement. But the Precepts were founded for a reason. What you do with them is your choice, but they are established on good ground. There is kamma and there is Vipaka. Actions and Consequences. Simple as that. Yer pays yer money and yer takes yer choice.

    Kundo
  • SE25WallSE25Wall London Explorer

    they can also provide occasional, beautiful, personal journeys that stick with the user for a life time. they are always present throughout human history and always will be. sure, there are exceptions of terrible experiences, but by their nature (exhausting, long (12 hours for LSD), challanging, often scary), they are not addictive. so there should, in my view, be no resistance and shaming of these substances. we believe that we cannot handle these experiences as a species, that we will all spiral out of control and become crazy. but on balance i think they have made human experience richer and more interesting. even if we lived in a utopia, people would have the strong desire to escape it sometimes. people use them by the same mechanism that people want to climb mountains or backpack around the world, for the simple reason of exploration and adventure.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    ok.

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