Reply To: Stopping Vaci Sankara


Welcome to the forum, layman!

Yes. As I explained in that example, if one stops taking drugs but keeps on thinking about those drug related pleasures/activities, then it will not be possible to break the habit. At least, it will take much longer to break the habit; but the real problem is that if one uses it just one time after even several months, then one will have to start all over.

Of course that is the hard part too: to stop thinking about it. The Buddha suggested the following:

  1. One must think about the bad consequences of taking drugs. Since thinking about drugs also contribute to the problem, it is as bad as taking drugs. One could read about what happens to drug addicts at the end, and that should scare anyone.
  2. Start doing or thinking about another activity that one likes, when those bad thoughts come to the mind. One could read a book, exercise, or do some other activity that one likes.
  3. If all this fails, one should “with his teeth clenched and his tongue pressed against the roof of his mouth — he should beat down, constrain, and suppress those bad thoughts”.

The above quotation (which I revised a bit) is from the “Vitakkasanthana Sutta: The Relaxation of Thoughts“.
– It is not a very good translation. But the above three points are made in that sutta.
– Of course it should work with any bad habit.

So, it takes a real effort to suppress such thoughts (vaci sankhara).