Posted by Kevin Lord (220.127.116.11) on September 14, 2000 at 07:49:01:
In Reply to: Re: Drugs- Sergio - Tim posted by Susan S on September 13, 2000 at 16:59:10:
I think the most important thing to be realized here is that the drugs _are_ an escape from reality... that this is the opposite point of Buddhism, much as Sergio reveals in his letter...
HOWEVER, so what? To use or not use the drugs is not the important thing, IMHO... I would say that whether or not you use drugs, the endeavor of primary importance is that of awareness... It is quite possible to be on a mind-altering drug, and to still at the same time maintain perfect awareness... Quite easy, in fact, because the awareness/consciousness does not stem from the mind, but rather from something else.
There are masters who have said that the drugs can be useful once or twice (albeit, they don't recommend them for regular usage) simply because they too can be 'fingers pointing at the moon'... Marijuana, LSD, Psilocyben... none of these things have any inherent worth, good or bad. It is simply the quality of awareness that you bring to their usage.
That said, in my PERSONAL experience, and in the experiences of those that I have been close to and observed, the drugs themselves may provide that 'finger pointing to the moon', but this is a benefit that is exhausted within one or two experiences of the substance at hand... After this, the drug(s) seem to be either neutral, or harmful, depending on the quality of awareness that you can bring to the experience... many people become less aware when taking drugs, thus the warning by most practicioners of Buddhism...
In the end, I would recommend that you simply apply your awareness to your usage of drugs. Don't be afraid to acknowledge that you are an 'addict' if that is indeed the case, but also be unconcerned... let awareness be the bridge that leads to practicing Buddhism, and not the other way around.
Let karma worry about itself! :)
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