| Achieve Peace, Happiness, and Spiritual Wisdom by Refraining from Drugs - *A compilation of Supreme Master Ching Hai's lectures
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Hallo. My grateful greeting to all of you,
the organizers, who worked passionately for this event, and the
participants who brushed aside other important obligations to show
support and care by coming to this gathering. SOME OF THE TRAGIC
TOLLS OF ADDICTIVE DRUG ABUSE:
I am honored to be
invited. Though I cannot personally be there with you, my heart is with
you, and my best wishes for your endeavor. I wish also what you wish: a
healthy, survived, happy, peaceful planet. And we are working together
towards this goal.
We have come a long way. How far may surprise
us. And it may surprise us that even war is not the worst thing that
happens. There are far worse killers. If you allow, I will name them for
Perhaps for my sake as well. We live together on the
same planet, we have the same concern. So what concerns you, concerns
There was a time when humans killed other humans – even just
to eat. Now, doing so is a crime. We call it murder – people killing
people, the most heinous crime of all crimes.
Whether old or young,
light-skinned or dark, Christian or Muslim, Buddhist or Sikh – to take
the life of a human is in some places still punishable with one’s own
life being taken in return.
But now humanity is being called to
an even more elevated and compassionate moral level of conduct: a future
day is dawning where killing animals, too, shall be called a crime.
has happened in some places already. In America a teen has just been
recently judged as to have committed a crime by killing, serially, 19
In the civilized society that should be, we protest war, we
hold rallies to stop the senseless killing of human against human, we
plead with governments to enact policies of peace, we judge the murderer
as one whose standards are less than human, as one guilty of an act so
unimaginable that the person is shunned by society for the rest of his
or her life.
An entire elaborate legal system is established, an
enormous squad of personnel and forces are employed to impose punishment
for the reprehensible act of causing death to another human, for
robbing others of their beloved or their kin.
gathered, juries are summoned, the most learned judges preside, armed
guards stand watch, impenetrable prisons are built. Police risk their
safety in defense of human life, and schools and families teach moral
conduct – all to prevent such crimes from occurring. We take much time,
energy, and our collective resources to protect life thus.
day, we will also protest against the murder of our animal
co-inhabitants, and by extension, we will denounce anything in the
future that kills. Because killing is a crime that must be stopped.
These silent killers, they are unnoticed by most of us. They are in our
home every day. I will try to point them out. It may surprise you, it
may not. To some of you, it is obvious, to some of you it will be the
first time that you realize
who our enemy truly is.
Killers KILLER #1: MEAT
KILLER #2: ALCOHOL
Now we come to killer number three. Namely, DRUGS. Drugs
destroy lives, intelligence and function of countless of our kind,
wreaking grief and havoc on families, darkening or terminating people’s
future, youths’ future especially, as youths are impressionable and
easily fall into this kind of temptation. Drugs can do all that. Drugs
kill, often at a tragically young age. Is this not an intolerable crime
begging to be stopped?
Allow me to tell those who are still not
200,000 deaths each year.Costs of US$181 billion
each year in the United States, US$33
billion in the UK. Lifetime cost
of current drug addiction amounts to US$575 billion in the UK.
CRIME AND VIOLENCE
- Brain damage
- Heart Disease
- Liver Disease
- Permanent memory loss
- Mental illness
- Higher infant mortality
- Increased crime and violence
- Illegal drugs are a factor in 50% of
the United Kingdom each year.
- In the US, 60% of people arrested each year
have been taking illegal drugs.
- Six hundred fifty heroin addicts in the US
committed 70,000 crimes in a three-month period.
- US businesses lose US$100
billion per year
due to employees’ drug and alcohol abuse.
- Australians pay US$53 billion per year for
health care, law enforcement and lost productivity of drug
- 52 people die each day due to drugs
in the US.
- In Canada, substance abuse is attributed to 21 percent
of total deaths and 23 percent of potential life years lost due
to early mortalities.
PLUS MORE…SOME BENEFITS OF DRUG ABSTINENCE
- In the US, treatment for drug addiction has been shown to save
lives, reduce crime and rebuild families, along with:
- 69% of those treated being drug-free one year after
- 64% reduction in arrests one year after treatment
- A vaccine has been developed in the United Kingdom that can
help wean cocaine addicts by preventing a “high” from the drug.
- Research confirms that an herbal supplement, N-acetylcysteine
(NAC), helps reduce cocaine cravings and may also be effective in
treating heroin addiction.
- When used as a supplement to standard drug counseling, a
computer program providing outpatient therapy proves helpful for addicts
in becoming drug free.
- A California, USA study found that for every US$1 invested in
drug treatment, US$7 was saved through reduced crime, health and welfare
costs, and increased income stability.
- 60% of cocaine and heroin in the US is consumed by people who
get arrested in the same year; thus, treatment that helps them to
overcome drug addiction reduces crime and market demand for drugs.
- A doctor in Arizona, USA identified a new outpatient treatment
for methamphetamine addicts, showing an over 60% success rate in
- Since 1991, when substitution treatment became available for
all heroin users in Zurich, Switzerland, the number of new addicts
- Thirty percent of US inmates who were able to receive drug
treatment while in prison remained drug free, with reduced likelihood of
being arrested again.
- Seventy-six percent of people participating in both drug
treatment programs in prison and post-prison treatment in the US
remained drug-free, with increased rates of law-abiding citizenry.
- Twenty years of research in the US has demonstrated that drug
treatment programs are effective in reducing crime, as well as improving
the health and social function of participants.
- The Washington State Institute for Public Policy Research in
the US finds that treatment programs for youth drug users are effective
and can save the state between US$1,900 to US$31,200 per child.
- Drug-free workplace programs are found to result in:
- Lower absenteeism
- Fewer accidents
- Higher productivity
- Improved morale
- Better employee health
- Decreased use of and expenses for health benefits
- Lower corporate insurance premium costs
- The following response was rated as the best answer to a
question posed on “Yahoo Ask” regarding the benefits of being drug-free:
- No fear of police
- No fear of needle-infected site on the body
- No fear of 'frying' the brain
- No fear of 'impaired' driving and thus accidents
- Delight in being free to observe the world (vision, touch,
taste, speech or hearing) without compromised senses.
- Joy of being fully functional in a crisis or emergency
- Ability to tell others about the joys of a drug-free life
- Through the use of satellite remote sensors, China has been able
remove virtually all opium plantations and heroin processing locations.
- New Zealand Police Association suggests parental approaches
that may help children avoid involvement with drugs, such as:
- Providing constructive encouragement
- Talking and listening as a family
- Instilling values that promote inner self esteem
- For International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit
Trafficking, Thailand, China, and Cambodia publicly incinerates illegal
- The United Kingdom government has implemented budget reforms to
encourage drug users to attend rehabilitation courses.
- Pakistan and China work together to reduce drug trafficking
between their borders.
- The Colombian Navy successfully intercepted 10 tons of cocaine
and stopped it from being smuggled into the country by submarine.
- A three-year anti-drug campaign in China raises awareness and
increases the number of people who remain drug-free.