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 Post subject: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:36 am 
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Beside St. Pius X do you know any saint who smoke?


Btw, how come smoking isn't a sin? It's pretty detrimental to one's health. Of course some saints may be excuse because they do not know the danger of smoking. But by the time of St. Pius X the danger of smoking should be widely known (at least the Pope's doctor would know it) but the Church at the time never said that smoking is a sin.


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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:05 am 
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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:10 am 
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i was not aware the dangers of smoking were made known until the 1960s....long after St Pius X had left this world

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:33 am 
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beng wrote:
Beside St. Pius X do you know any saint who smoke?


Btw, how come smoking isn't a sin? It's pretty detrimental to one's health. Of course some saints may be excuse because they do not know the danger of smoking. But by the time of St. Pius X the danger of smoking should be widely known (at least the Pope's doctor would know it) but the Church at the time never said that smoking is a sin.


Smoking is a sin. I'm a smoker.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:45 am 
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CanadianCatholic wrote:
Smoking is a sin.


No it isn't. Addiction to smoking, or addiction to any substance, can be sinful, but smoking itself is not.

This is a hard thing for modern people to wrap their brains around because our modern western culture is so militantly atheistic and therefore regards the physical death of the body as the greatest possible evil. Christianity has never looked at it that way.

In fact, what Christ said is very much true

"And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell."

The physical death of the body is NOT the greatest evil, nor is preserving the body the highest good.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:51 am 
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Should we list the things that are bad for you?

Cheeseburgers
Bacon
Riding in a car
Staying up late

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:55 am 
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kage_ar wrote:
Should we list the things that are bad for you?

Cheeseburgers
Bacon
Riding in a car
Staying up late


Everything is bad for you when you get down to it, ultimately, individuals have the right to choose how much risk they are willing to take in order to receive some benefit.....jumping out of airplanes is insanely bad for you....but people who are recreational sky divers are not sinning....

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:37 am 
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Smoking is not a sin. Smoking immoderately is. To use something that you are getting addicted to, and to let that happen is a sin unless you have just reason. E.g., one may be becoming addicted to a medicine but need to take it for a while longer for health reasons. But were there other reasonable options and one saw he was getting addicted, he should switch (if that can be reasonably done)

Smoking is no sin in itself therefore, but presents a risk that varies from person to person, and depending on the type of smoking. Cigarettes are more likely to become an addiction than cigars, for instance. One needs to exercise prudence.

To not smoke because one has an addictive personality, or because they don't like the taste or aesthetics of it is not a sin, unless (hypothetically) it was needed for health benefits (unlikely, at least in a first world country today)

To not smoke because one thinks it is always a sin is an error. To persist in that error is a sin. One forms a false judgment of the actions of others when they do that. The Church in the current Catechism merely speaks of moderation in smoking and the Vatican grocery store sell cigarettes. It was only a few years ago (after John Paul II) that smoking in the Vatican post office and other buildings was forbidden, and until 2005 people could smoke on the plane the pope was on, but not other flights from that same company.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:09 pm 
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Doom wrote:

The physical death of the body is NOT the greatest evil, nor is preserving the body the highest good.


I didn't say it was the greatest sin. Nor can you compare it to bad eating habits. No-one needs to smoke. I increase the risk of early death and infirm health by smoking. I have no right to risk what belongs to God; perhaps more importantly early death and illness would be a grief brought on others.

1 Cor. 3 &6: "Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? If any one destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy, and that temple you are."... "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own;"

Not a grave sin perhaps but sin nevertheless. Perhaps I just have quitting on my mind a lot these days.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:11 pm 
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Solivagus in Mundi wrote:
Smoking is not a sin. Smoking immoderately is. To use something that you are getting addicted to, and to let that happen is a sin unless you have just reason. E.g., one may be becoming addicted to a medicine but need to take it for a while longer for health reasons. But were there other reasonable options and one saw he was getting addicted, he should switch (if that can be reasonably done)

Smoking is no sin in itself therefore, but presents a risk that varies from person to person, and depending on the type of smoking. Cigarettes are more likely to become an addiction than cigars, for instance. One needs to exercise prudence.

To not smoke because one has an addictive personality, or because they don't like the taste or aesthetics of it is not a sin, unless (hypothetically) it was needed for health benefits (unlikely, at least in a first world country today)

To not smoke because one thinks it is always a sin is an error. To persist in that error is a sin. One forms a false judgment of the actions of others when they do that. The Church in the current Catechism merely speaks of moderation in smoking and the Vatican grocery store sell cigarettes. It was only a few years ago (after John Paul II) that smoking in the Vatican post office and other buildings was forbidden, and until 2005 people could smoke on the plane the pope was on, but not other flights from that same company.


You are right. I smoke immoderately.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 5:55 pm 
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One can't really compare smoking to cheeseburgers, bacon etc. Because to normal people, or even famish people, bacon etc is a good thing. But smoking, even one inhale, is dangerous and posses zero health benefit.


Granted smoking would not harm the spiritual self (ie. soul). But we are to care for our material self too (ie. body). And in light of the intimate connection between body and soul, if our body is unhealthy, the soul will eventually affected.


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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:45 pm 
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Solivagus in Mundi wrote:
Smoking is not a sin. Smoking immoderately is. To use something that you are getting addicted to, and to let that happen is a sin unless you have just reason

But doesn't the fact that most people who smoke a little (cigarettes, that is) end up smoking immoderately make it "the near occasion of sin?" And what would possibly be a just reason to smoke cigarettes? I smoked a few cigarettes socially, in college. Never used an entire pack over several weeks, but I enjoyed it. I wouldn't consider wanting to fit in with my addicted friends, or enjoying the dizzy buzzed feeling it provided as a just reason. I remember one day, looking at the pack of cigarettes on my dresser and feeling the desire to smoke one - at that moment I threw it away, recognizing that if I indulged, I would eventually end up addicted. But looking back, it sure seems like I was flirting with addiction - playing chicken with it. That's pretty "near occasion" in my book. And actually, I don't know any cigarette smokers who only have that one cigarette every couple of weeks, which is the way I would drink wine (if I liked it better). So while I'm sure that it can be said that technically, the act of smoking a cigarette is not a sin, in practical terms, it very often is.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:05 pm 
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ThyKingdomCome wrote:
But doesn't the fact that most people who smoke a little (cigarettes, that is) end up smoking immoderately make it "the near occasion of sin?" And what would possibly be a just reason to smoke cigarettes? .


I don't think that is even true...I've known plenty of people in my lfie who only smoke a couple packs a month......American Indians smoke tobacco as part of their religious rites....and they have for centuries....and most of them never, or only rarely, smoke outside of of their religious rites....

And this argument of your alcohol, in fact most of the time when people drink alcohol they drink it until they get completely drunk....that doens't mean that drinking is itself sinful....

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Last edited by Doom on Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:29 pm 
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beng wrote:
One can't really compare smoking to cheeseburgers, bacon etc. Because to normal people, or even famish people, bacon etc is a good thing. But smoking, even one inhale, is dangerous and posses zero health benefit.


Granted smoking would not harm the spiritual self (ie. soul). But we are to care for our material self too (ie. body). And in light of the intimate connection between body and soul, if our body is unhealthy, the soul will eventually affected.


Many people will tell you that one bite of bacon has so much fat and nitrates that it is dangerous.

There is food that has no health benefits, a candy bar, it is not a sin to eat a candy bar.

Smoking tobacco DOES have proven health benefits.

http://www.forces.org/evidence/evid/therap.htm

http://www.livescience.com/15115-5-heal ... sease.html

Smoking lowers the risk of Parkinson's Disease.

Lowers the risk of gum disease.

Helps alzheimers.

Smoking lowers the risk of needing joint replacement.

Lowers the risk of obesity.

It has some benefit to the heart.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:32 pm 
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ThyKingdomCome wrote:
Solivagus in Mundi wrote:
Smoking is not a sin. Smoking immoderately is. To use something that you are getting addicted to, and to let that happen is a sin unless you have just reason

But doesn't the fact that most people who smoke a little (cigarettes, that is) end up smoking immoderately make it "the near occasion of sin?" And what would possibly be a just reason to smoke cigarettes? I smoked a few cigarettes socially, in college. Never used an entire pack over several weeks, but I enjoyed it. I wouldn't consider wanting to fit in with my addicted friends, or enjoying the dizzy buzzed feeling it provided as a just reason. I remember one day, looking at the pack of cigarettes on my dresser and feeling the desire to smoke one - at that moment I threw it away, recognizing that if I indulged, I would eventually end up addicted. But looking back, it sure seems like I was flirting with addiction - playing chicken with it. That's pretty "near occasion" in my book. And actually, I don't know any cigarette smokers who only have that one cigarette every couple of weeks, which is the way I would drink wine (if I liked it better). So while I'm sure that it can be said that technically, the act of smoking a cigarette is not a sin, in practical terms, it very often is.


I have gone through times in my life when I smoked a pack a day.

Now, I have not had a cigarette for 9 months.

I like to have cigarettes when I go out to a club to hear a band (don't have the $$ to go out...). I can smoke half a pack in an evening and then not smoke again for 6 months.

If we are going to have cocktails in the evening I will have a cigarette or two, and we do that maybe once every couple of months.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:25 pm 
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Doom wrote:
ThyKingdomCome wrote:
But doesn't the fact that most people who smoke a little (cigarettes, that is) end up smoking immoderately make it "the near occasion of sin?" And what would possibly be a just reason to smoke cigarettes? .


I don't think that is even true...I've known plenty of people in my lfie who only smoke a couple packs a month......American Indians smoke tobacco as part of their religious rites....and they have for centuries....and most of them never, or only rarely, smoke outside of of their religious rites....
Can you clarify, are you saying that all of the "plenty" that you know are folks who smoke in religious rituals only, or are you saying that you know plenty of people, other than American Indians, who smoke regularly, but only a couple of packs a month? I've been looking for some stats on this question and am having trouble finding them. I am only going on my own experience, which is different from yours - I guess some objective statistics would be useful here.

Doom wrote:
And this argument of your alcohol, in fact most of the time when people drink alcohol they drink it until they get completely drunk....that doens't mean that drinking is itself sinful....

Maybe using alcohol didn't make my point very well. My point was that there is no one would ever say that I drink immoderately, or dangerously, or have a problem with it - since I drink on average once a month, and then, usually only have 1 drink. Even if I upped it to one drink a week, few would judge my drinking to be dangerous or bad for me, aside from people with a religious belief against any drinking. So the same might be said for someone who has one cigarette a month, or maybe even one cigarette a week (I don't know about the 1.5 cigs a day that the people you know who smoke a couple of packs a month). That was the extent of my comparison with drinking. But what percentage of smokers is that moderate in their smoking? My opinion is that these are rare folks and that smoking a cigarette a day is much more likely to lead to addictive smoking than not. Again, I guess what we're missing is stats on that question because I don't have anything other than my experience and sensibilities to back up that opinion.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:28 pm 
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kage_ar wrote:
I have gone through times in my life when I smoked a pack a day.

Now, I have not had a cigarette for 9 months.

Wow, that's impressive!
kage_ar wrote:
I like to have cigarettes when I go out to a club to hear a band (don't have the $$ to go out...). I can smoke half a pack in an evening and then not smoke again for 6 months.

If we are going to have cocktails in the evening I will have a cigarette or two, and we do that maybe once every couple of months.

In your experience, would you say that it is common for others to be able to smoke like you do, or are you somewhat of an exception?

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:55 pm 
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kage_ar wrote:
beng wrote:
One can't really compare smoking to cheeseburgers, bacon etc. Because to normal people, or even famish people, bacon etc is a good thing. But smoking, even one inhale, is dangerous and posses zero health benefit.


Granted smoking would not harm the spiritual self (ie. soul). But we are to care for our material self too (ie. body). And in light of the intimate connection between body and soul, if our body is unhealthy, the soul will eventually affected.


Many people will tell you that one bite of bacon has so much fat and nitrates that it is dangerous.

There is food that has no health benefits, a candy bar, it is not a sin to eat a candy bar.

Smoking tobacco DOES have proven health benefits.

http://www.forces.org/evidence/evid/therap.htm

http://www.livescience.com/15115-5-heal ... sease.html

Smoking lowers the risk of Parkinson's Disease.

Lowers the risk of gum disease.

Helps alzheimers.

Smoking lowers the risk of needing joint replacement.

Lowers the risk of obesity.

It has some benefit to the heart.

Interesting claims. Hopefully, if these have truth to them, time and fair research will be able to tell whether, or when, the benefits are worth the risks.

I would still maintain though, that since taking good care of our bodies is a duty, that to intentionally and habitually do something that has a significant harmful effect on our body ranges from imprudent to serious sin, depending on the circumstances. Most people believe this to be true about smoking, and I would say that even if we turn out to be wrong, a person who habitually puts something in their body without a good reason, believing to to be significantly harmful, is showing a lack of respect for the body that we are given by God to care for. I wouldn't isolate smoking here - but habitual overeating (guilty), or habitual and intentional bad nutrition, drinking excessively, are only a few things that would fall under the category of showing disrespect to the temple of the Holy Spirit that is our body.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:04 pm 
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The vast majority of the people I know my age smoke on ocassion, no more. I know tons of people who smoke at parties only, or during finals weeks, or one person who somes once a month.

Now do note, I said in my post above the cigarettes are much easier to become addicted to than cigars, pipes, snus, etc. The reason being that you can do them quickly and often. A cigar takes time. A pipe takes work and isn't the sort of thing you rush out during class break to smoke. So cigarettes can more easily become a habit, just on a practical level.

Then there is this, that the vast majority of cigarettes have additional chemicals that are harmful to you and make them more addictive, but not all cigarettes have this. There are people who have an easier time quitinng by first switching to natural cigarettes for a while, as their bodies are able to lose dependence on these other chemicals first, because one gives up the nicotine, or frankly (where most addiction comes from) the ritual. I have no trouble not smoking at home with my parents and most places, but with certain people and in certain places I smoke more frequently and slip right back into a habit of it. The addiction there is not the nicotine, it is psychological. I have found that I can just as well puff a cigarette in such situations. It is the psychological habit, especially in social situations, that is compelling there.

The weird thing is, statistically, is that there is a higher proportion among "smokers" today (referring to cigarette smokers, not cigar and pipe) that smoke more than there were in the 1950's and 1960's. My guess is that the truly light smokers who were a higher percentage of smokers back then are precisely those people now who can take and leave it (the many, in some places majority of "non smokers," who do, actually, smoke here and there but not regularly). Back then it simply happened all the time in social situations. So the truly light smoker is not even counted anymore as a smoker, and of those who continue despite stigmas you are more likely to find those who get addicted more easily and hence smoke more.

Addiction is, in itself, a spiritual imperfection, not a sin. But to wilfully allow oneself to get addicted when it can be reasonably foreseen and is unnecessary (unlike my medicine example above) would be sinful, as one would be choose the imperfection voluntarily.

For the record to, I know plenty of regular smokers who do not smoke when to visit their parents back home, even when it is a whole month. They don't have any cravings or anything of the sort. But back in Berkeley, or wherever they are used to smoking, they do crave it. A lot of this is psychological and varies widly from person to person.

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I would still maintain though, that since taking good care of our bodies is a duty, that to intentionally and habitually do something that has a significant harmful effect on our body ranges from imprudent to serious sin, depending on the circumstances. Most people believe this to be true about smoking

Now again I repeat. To not smoke because one has an addictive personality, or because they do not like it, or have no desire to is not a sin. To smoke when it is adversely affecting your health in a notable way, without just cause, is a sin. To not smoke because you think that smoking is a sin is an error. It is not thinking with the Church. To persist in that error is a sin. Yes I said it.

Catholic moral theology says it is not a sin. Someone who says it is is not thinking with Catholic moral theology. That should be realized.

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 Post subject: Re: Saints who smoke
PostPosted: Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:08 pm 
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For some lightheartedness

To have a horror of tobacco is not to have an abstract standard of right; but exactly the opposite. It is to have no standard of right whatever; and to make certain local likes and dislikes as a substitute. Nobody who has an abstract standard of right and wrong can possibly think it wrong to smoke a cigar. It is a vague sentimental notion that certain habits were not suitable to the old log cabin or the old hometown. It has a vague utilitarian notion that certain habits are not directly useful in the new amalgamated stores or the new financial gambling-hell. If his aged mother or his economic master dislikes to see a young man hanging about with a pipe in his mouth, the action becomes a sin; or the nearest that such a moral philosophy can come to the idea of a sin. A man does not chop wood for the log hut by smoking; and a man does not make dividends for the Big Boss by smoking; and therefore smoking has a smell as of something sinful. - Chesterton


On a more serious notes. The following contains the main carcinogen found to tobacco smoke (the only proven carcinogen in natural tobacco that doesn't have additives)

1. Incense smoke...so should we ban that from Churches?
2. Any and all charred food, but especially with meat like steak. Guess we need to ban cajun cooking, grilling...maybe we can only steam everything?
3. Many cosmetics--no lipstick lady!
4. BEER!!!! And yet the Church honors beer (seriously) in her liturgy
5. Corn beef (there goes the Irish, dang)
6. Spicy foods that also have meat (acidic compounds and meat together with produce nitrosimines)

So to be consistent, please stop cooking all your foods, do not eat anything with acidity in it, do not use any cosmetics...move to some remote Island away from cars...never use a fire (as the smoke contains the same carcinogen)...ad nauseam

Interestingly, tobacco itself doesn't really have carcinogens as such. Nitrosamines are produced either through burning (unavoidable in smoking admittedly) or the curing process. But this means that there are safer types of tobacco. American snuff (often wrongly called chewing tobacco, or dip) has 127.9 ppm nitrosamines but Swedish Snus has 2.8 ppm, and have no proven link to cancers (it ccarries similar risk to many cosmetics!)

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