Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Buddhist ethical conduct including the Five Precepts (Pañcasikkhāpada), and Eightfold Ethical Conduct (Aṭṭhasīla).
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Sam Vara
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:32 pm

rightviewftw wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:28 pm
Imo the question should be asked thus;
can a human drink alcohol in moderation?
and the answer is
yes, it can happen, it is not impossible.

saying that a buddhist can not drink is just sadfunny to me

The logic of "A devout Buddhist can never break the 5th precept" is some weird Arahantification of a "Buddhist".

Can a Devout Buddhist break any of the five precepts?

If the answer is no then by surely we are talking about an Arahant otherwise i can see no other way of answering than yes it can happen that someone who has undertaken the training rules might break them.
I think the question should be seen as asking whether a Buddhist is permitted to drink alcohol, not whether it is a factual possibility.

rightviewftw
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by rightviewftw » Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:45 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:32 pm
I think the question should be seen as asking whether a Buddhist is permitted to drink alcohol, not whether it is a factual possibility.
I think there is nobody giving permissions, one is permitted to even go to hell if one wants, how about that.
Second point is that it is clearly unwholesome and is never praised in the Sutta.

The Sigalovada Sutta, the by far most comperhensive discourse on conduct for a lay person lists the consumption of intoxicants as a channel for dissipation of wealth and a cause for decline;
(3) "What are the six channels for dissipating wealth which he does not pursue?
(a) "indulgence in intoxicants which cause infatuation and heedlessness; (b) sauntering in streets at unseemly hours; (c) frequenting theatrical shows; (d) indulgence in gambling which causes heedlessness; (e) association with evil companions; (f) the habit of idleness.
(a) "There are, young householder, these six evil consequences in indulging in intoxicants which cause infatuation and heedlessness:
(i) loss of wealth,
(ii) increase of quarrels,
(iii) susceptibility to disease,
(iv) earning an evil reputation,
(v) shameless exposure of body,
(vi) weakening of intellect.
"Who plays with dice and drinks intoxicants, goes to women who are dear unto others as their own lives, associates with the mean and not with elders — he declines just as the moon during the waning half.
The Sigalovada Sutta is far more analytical than merely saying to keep 5 precepts, it also does not list Drinking as kamma-kilesa, lit., 'actions of defilement.' on par with
(1) "What are the four vices in conduct that he has eradicated? The destruction of life, householder, is a vice and so are stealing, sexual misconduct, and lying. These are the four vices that he has eradicated."
Sarakaani Sutta tells us about a man fond of drink who managed to attain Stream Entry.
a number of the Sakyans, whenever they met each other or came together in company, were indignant and angry, and said scornfully: "A fine thing, a marvelous thing! Nowadays anyone can become a Stream-Winner, if the Blessed One has proclaimed Sarakaani who died to be Stream-Winner... assured of enlightenment! Why, Sarakaani failed in his training and took to drink!"
If someone learns about and undertakes the precept of not drinking, then clearly there is no room for moderate or even the occasional drinking in as far as that would be breaking the training rule. However having undertaken a training rule one can abstain many times before not abstaining, then abstain again and again. It is not like a rock that one keeps in a pocket...

My point is that one should avoid being mindlessly dogmatic about precepts, claiming a moral highground on account of mere adherence to rules of moral behavior and deriving identity from it. That being said the rules are for one's gain and growth and one should keep as many as one can for as long as possible for it is for one's benefit and protection.
Last edited by rightviewftw on Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:15 pm, edited 6 times in total.
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by dharmacorps » Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:02 pm

Of interest, reservatrol (beneficial element in wine) is available as supplements which do not contain alcohol.

Sroberto
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by Sroberto » Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:15 pm

The question begins... Can a buddhist...

Buddhist = person who keeps precepts
Precepts = do not drink alcobol

Therefore, a Buddhist does not drink alcohol. To be a buddhist one takes refuge in the triple gem and undertakes the precepts. This makes one a buddhist. One does not get to intentionally pick and choose. The precept says not to intentionally drink alcohol. If you intentionally choose to drink alcohol as a matter of personal practice, then, by definition, you are not a buddhist. It does not matter if you responsibly enjoy a glass of pinot noir with your lamb or if you are a falling down drunk street brawler. Neither a gourmet dinner or a street fight leads one forward on the path .
Last edited by Sroberto on Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

rightviewftw
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by rightviewftw » Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:17 pm

This is exactly what i am talking about...
Sroberto wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:15 pm
Buddhist = person who keeps precepts
So a monk who breaks any precept is not a Buddhist?
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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Sam Vara
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:24 pm

rightviewftw wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:45 pm
Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:32 pm
I think the question should be seen as asking whether a Buddhist is permitted to drink alcohol, not whether it is a factual possibility.
I think there is nobody giving permissions, one is permitted to even go to hell if one wants, how about that.
Indeed. Perhaps you should try to see the OP in context. I think they were asking whether other people thought it was advisable, or a technical breach of the precept. I don't think it was intended to be about whether someone is able to drink alcohol, nor yet was it about seeking permission. "Can" is a word with a range of meanings, three of which we have now explored in some detail...

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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by rightviewftw » Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:33 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:24 pm
The responses and views expressed itt is what prompted my response rather than the ambiguous OP.

I think it is crystal clear that intending to drink is unwholesome, arranging for drinking is unwholesome, let alone consuming the alcohol.
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
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Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by Dhammarakkhito » Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:41 pm

rightviewftw wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:28 pm
Can a Devout Buddhist break any of the five precepts?

If the answer is no then surely we are talking about an Arahant or something like that. I can see no other way of answering than yes it can happen that someone who has undertaken the training rules might break them on account of lack of development.
we are or i am actually talking about a sotāpanna, a stream enterer. examine sarakāni sutta closely, he completed the training upon his death. what other training do you envision he completed?
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by rightviewftw » Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:51 pm

Dhammarakkhito wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 7:41 pm
rightviewftw wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:28 pm
Can a Devout Buddhist break any of the five precepts?

If the answer is no then surely we are talking about an Arahant or something like that. I can see no other way of answering than yes it can happen that someone who has undertaken the training rules might break them on account of lack of development.
we are or i am actually talking about a sotāpanna, a stream enterer. examine sarakāni sutta closely, he completed the training upon his death. what other training do you envision he completed?
As i understand it you hold that a Sotapanna cannot break the Five Precepts, is that it?

Do you mean "a Sotapanna" as 1/4 Noble Individuals or 2/8 when taken as Pairs?

What about Cula-Sotapanna mentioned in the Abhidhamma?

Is it all five precepts that cannot be broken by a Sotapanna or the 5th in particular?

Just want a clarification of what exactly is your position before i refute it.
Dhammarakkhito wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:18 am
sarakāni... utterly renouncing alcohol upon his death
Surely the bolded part is hammered out by your own reason and deduction because this has not been stated anywhere in the Tipitaka.
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
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Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by Dhammarakkhito » Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:54 pm

i dont think much of abhidhamma, havent read it, good reason to think its fake so probably never will
i understand in another sutta breaking the five precepts is not listed as an impossibility, only the five heinous offenses and taking a different teacher from the buddha
but it is there in those images on imgur. doodoot's objection is that it may be more than the bare minimum to attain stream entry, but its there in the sutta, one abstains from breaking those precepts thereby allaying that guilty dread. why prepare to refute if you need clarification on what i have to say?
"Just as the ocean has a single taste — that of salt — in the same way, this Dhamma-Vinaya has a single taste: that of release."
— Ud 5.5

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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by rightviewftw » Wed Apr 25, 2018 9:36 pm

Dhammarakkhito wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 8:54 pm
why prepare to refute if you need clarification on what i have to say?
I prepared to refute and wanted a clarification so that refutation would be most effective & accurate or just redundant after your response.
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by dylanj » Thu Apr 26, 2018 9:59 am

don't drink any alcohol at all in anyway whatsoever at any place or time

this is best

it's not that hard

trying to make wiggle room is trying to let your passions indulge in evil
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all assets, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

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dylanj
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by dylanj » Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:02 am

that being said, see sarakaani sutta
susukhaṁ vata nibbānaṁ,
sammā­sambud­dha­desitaṁ;
asokaṁ virajaṁ khemaṁ,
yattha dukkhaṁ nirujjhatī


Oh! extinction is so very blissful,
As taught by the One Rightly Self-Awakened:
Sorrowless, stainless, secure;
Where suffering all ceases


etaṁ santaṁ etaṁ paṇītaṁ yadidaṁ sabbasaṅkhārasamatho sabbūpadhipaṭi nissaggo taṇhakkhayo virāgo nirodho nibbānaṁ

This is peaceful, this is excellent, that is: the stilling of all preparations, the relinquishment of all assets, the destruction of craving, detachment, cessation, extinction.

Sroberto
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by Sroberto » Fri Apr 27, 2018 1:35 am

rightviewftw wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:17 pm
This is exactly what i am talking about...
Sroberto wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:15 pm
Buddhist = person who keeps precepts
So a monk who breaks any precept is not a Buddhist?


So a monk who breaks any precept is not a Buddhist?

There is nothing about "any" in the question. Specifically, drinking alcohol.

The question as worded implies continual or ongoing consumption of alcohol, not a lapse or one time occurance. Drink, infinitive. Regular drinking alcohol as an intentional act, by a monk, would definately make that monk not a buddhist.

If you are still unsure imagine walking by a wine bar and seeing two monks inside drinking Viognier and Merlot. Would you say, there are two buddist monks? Or would you say, how can they call themselves buddhist monks?

rightviewftw
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Re: Can a Buddhist drink alcohol in moderation?

Post by rightviewftw » Fri Apr 27, 2018 9:53 am

Sroberto wrote:
Fri Apr 27, 2018 1:35 am
rightviewftw wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:17 pm
This is exactly what i am talking about...
Sroberto wrote:
Wed Apr 25, 2018 5:15 pm
Buddhist = person who keeps precepts
So a monk who breaks any precept is not a Buddhist?


So a monk who breaks any precept is not a Buddhist?

There is nothing about "any" in the question. Specifically, drinking alcohol.

The question as worded implies continual or ongoing consumption of alcohol, not a lapse or one time occurance. Drink, infinitive. Regular drinking alcohol as an intentional act, by a monk, would definately make that monk not a buddhist.

If you are still unsure imagine walking by a wine bar and seeing two monks inside drinking Viognier and Merlot. Would you say, there are two buddist monks? Or would you say, how can they call themselves buddhist monks?
So Sarakaani the Sakyan was not a Buddhist while he was drinking then?
How to meditate: Anapanasati, Satipatthana.
Intro to General Semantics
Factors & Perceptions

Parallel Dhammapada Reading
Chinese to Eng Dhp
"The statements; 'With the remainderless stopping & fading of the six contact-media is it the case that there is anything else?' '.. is it the case that there is not anything else .. is it the case that there both is & is not anything else .. is it the case that there neither is nor is not anything else?' objectify non-objectification. However far the six contact-media go, that is how far objectification goes."

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