Regarding the 5th Precept

Surâ meraya majja pamâdatthânâ veramanî sikkhâpadam samâdiyâmi. *

I undertake the training precept to abstain from intoxicants, which
give rise to heedlessness.

*Pamâda = negligence, moral laxity, heedlessness, unmindfulness.
A related word, pamajjati, means: 1. to become intoxicated; 2. to be
careless, lazy, or negligent; 3. to waste one’s time.

Quotes from Gotama (Gautama) Buddha

“The layman who joyfully abides in self-control, knowing that the
use of intoxicants results in loss of self-control, should not indulge
in taking them, nor should he encourage others to do so, nor should
he approve of others doing so.

Fools commit evil deeds as a result of intoxication, and cause others
who are negligent to the the same. One should avoid this source of
evil, this madness, this delusion, this joy of fools.”

--Dhammika Sutta (Sutta Nipâta 398-399)

“To be…a drunkard…this is a cause of one’s downfall.”

--Parâbhava Sutta (Sutta Nipâta 106)

“If someone indulges in taking intoxicants, in this very world, he
digs up his own roots.”

--Dhammapada 247 (18:13)

“…to abstain from intoxicants, and to be diligent in virtue, these
are the Highest Blessings.”

--Mangala Sutta (Sutta Nipâta 264)

And from the teaching of Ma-tsu

“The chief law-inspector in Hung-chou asked, ‘Is it correct to eat
meat and drink wine?’ The Patriarch (Ma-tsu) replied, ‘If you eat
meat and drink wine, that is your happiness. If you do not, it is
your blessing.’”

--excerpt from Sun Face Buddha, trs. by Cheng Chien Bhikshu (p.81)

Note: the Ch’an master Ma-tsu lived in China during the 8th century C.E.


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