Speaking Out Against Smoking in Yerushalyim

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  • #589242
    ssiy
    Participant

    I have been in Israel since Ellul learning in the Mir. Boruch Hashem everything about Israel is amazing. However, there has been one thing that has really been bothering me, the out of control smoking in Israel, Yerushalyim and finally the Yeshivish world in particular. Since I have been here I have not seen one Kol Korah from the Gedolim saying anything about this situation.

    I have seen young children and even pregnant women smoking it is out of control.

    2. Smokers should only smoke in private. No one should have to suffer from their second hand smoke. It is a Chillul Hashem just to see someone smoking. If you need to smoke do it in a private location. A Yeshiva like the Mir should set up a spot for smoking, perhaps in one of the parking lots near the Yeshiva which our out of sight.

    3. Smoking should only be done alone. One of the main ways that smoking unfortunately is spread throughout the Yeshiva world is because no one wants to smoke alone. If you observe smokers they always smoke next to another smoker or someone else who is not smoking that they can schmooze with. If smokers had to smoke alone it would give them a great incentive to finally quit and it would help stop the creation of new smokers.

    These are just some of my observations about this problem. Besides for killing themselves and those around them physically, smokers who disregard others and smoke near them are also committing some of the most serious Aveirous in the Torah killing themselves spiritually as well. Klal Yisrael needs to speak up about this and act now. I would love to hear what other people think about this subject.

    Thank You

    Stop Smoking In Yerushalyim (SSIY)

    #635169
    JayMatt19
    Participant

    About 9 years ago, signs went around all of the charedi neighborhoods of Yerushalyaim signed by ALL of the gedolim stating unequivocally, that smoking was ossur.

    So, what did it all accomplish??

    MORE GARBAGE!!!

    People just tore down the signs!! Since you can’t smoke next to the sign telling you it is Ossur!! That is what it accomplished!!

    I wish you the best of luck in this endeavor.

    #635170
    random88
    Member

    i just came back from EY after learning in the mir for 3.5 yrs. why on earth do you care if ppl smoke? how is it a chillul Hashem if everyone in israel does it? mind your own business and let people smoke. if they are stupid enough to do it or cant quit why do you care? . and if they smoke in the bathrooms, who cares? there is a difference between 2nd hand smoke and the SMELL of smoke. no one ever died from smelling smoke. and if guys are smoking right outside of the main, or bais yeshaya or whatever, its OUTSIDE! so unless they come right up to you and exhale and you inhale it then nothing is going to happen. good for you. dont smoke. let the gedolim handle it. they know what theyre doing and dont need your help

    #635171
    jO jO
    Member

    Thanks g-d my kids smoke cigarettes while in Brisk and the Mir.

    I thanks hashem every day that they are masmidim, and not on the streets smoking drugs.

    Think about it.

    #635172
    flatbush27
    Member

    jo jo: obviously if you had a choice which one it would be its the cigarettes while in yeshiva but if you look at things like that “well i could be doing that and that and i’m only doing this” that doesnt make any sense.

    think about it

    #635173
    ssiy
    Participant

    To random88 it is kind of hard to not inhale smoke when someone is walking right in front of you or towards you. When someone smokes in a stall next to you in a bathroom it is not a smell it is a mamashus of smoke that is deadly. Someone who lacks a concern for his fellow Jew and is callous enough to smoke next to another person is oiver the worst Isurei Doresia’s in the Torah. It seems you are pretty dumb.

    To Jo Jo cigarettes are a gateway drug. Look around near the Mir you don’t just see people smoking cigarettes. It starts with cigarettes and drinking and eventually leads to hard drugs. Think about it. Your kids in Brisk and the Mir are ruining their future and the future of any family they hope to build.

    #635174
    jO jO
    Member

    Thanks for telling me how to raise my children, whom all are boruch hashem growing in torah and yiras shomayim.

    I would suggest you get off the Internet and start learning some Mussar and stop trying to fix the velts problems.

    #635175
    random88
    Member

    GO JOJO! ssiy: you are not very smart if you think people who smoke will just start injecting cocaine or whatever. look at statistics. YESHIVA BOCHURIM SMOKE!! GET OVER IT AND OUT OF THE SLEAZY INTERNET CAFE ON BEN YEHUDA which is a lot worse than smoking crack

    #635176
    Itzik_s
    Member

    BS”D

    All I want to say is that smoking does often help concentration – maybe the best way to handle this is for a few trendsetters to switch to smoking pipes. The tobacco from pipes is not inhaled into the lungs, it is even better when it comes to helping concentration, and can easily be quit.

    I smoked a pipe for 18 years and quit when I felt like it. Then I started again for about 2 months, stopped again and haven’t smoked now for over 2 years. I did no damage to myself all those years that I smoked except for an occasional tongue burn that made it hard for me to eat for a day. And, statistics show that pipe smokers live LONGER than non-smokers!

    #635177
    Mayan_Dvash
    Participant

    Random, jojo, smoke your lungs black. If you get lucky and the Ribono Shel Olam protects you from related diseases, good for you. Otherwise, don’t go begging the public for assistance with healthcare.

    #635179
    Itzik_s
    Member

    BS”D

    Indeed, neither nicotine nor alcohol are gateway drugs. The reason for smoking being a problem is strictly health damage and damage to bystanders’ health (if the second hand smoke research is correct).

    #635180
    juda
    Member

    smoking carelessly is a sign of complete selfishness not thinking for a second that other ppl dont enjoy the smell & it bothers them

    #635181
    anon for this
    Participant

    Itzik_s,

    Which statistics show that pipe smokers live longer than non-smokers?

    #635182
    random88
    Member

    mayan: when did we say we smoke? everyone knows it kills so why should i care if others smoke unless they do it near non smokers who mind.

    #635183
    Mottel1
    Participant

    Tovo Elecha Brocha for having the courage to speak openly about this timely and extremely important topic. To the naive people who made fun of what you had to say, Gedolim would tell them that they have their heads in the sand. This past summer, I was in Eretz Yisroel and was in the company of a MAJOR godol whom everyone considers a major godol. I too was troubled by this situation and asked him about it. The godol was also very upset about this but answered me, “what can I do…there are chushuva Roshei Yeshiva who are smokers.” This is the root of the problem and where we must start. In fact, the godol in question (who did not want his name mentioned precisely for this reason) said, their only Heter is Rav Huna’s Heter (kivan she’hurgalu)and that it is truly a very great sakana.

    #635184
    areivimzehlazeh
    Participant

    jojo & random- you both sound like you’re high on something (and it aint yiras shamayim or torah)

    #635185
    random88
    Member

    i hope your happy SSIY! you made it to the front page. how about the gedolim and their views on the internet especially when it comes to yeshiva bochurim. how can you possibly be giving your full attention shachris/first seder tom morning when your staying up this late in EY? GET OFF THE INTERNET! YOUR IN THE MIR! What would R Nissin Kaplan, R Arieli and the Rosh Yesiva R Noson Tzvi Finkel say to you being here this late at night?!

    #635186
    yaakovg
    Member

    Smoking is a digusting dangerous hobby. It’s not a mitzvah and gives no nachas to Hashem. Nobody who smokes can consider themselves either a talmid chacham, kadosh, or a chasid. If you smoke, stop immediately and DO TESHUVA!!!

    #635187
    oomis
    Participant

    “i just came back from EY after learning in the mir for 3.5 yrs. why on earth do you care if ppl smoke? how is it a chillul Hashem if everyone in israel does it? mind your own business and let people smoke.”

    What exactly did you learn in the mir during your 3.5 years? “Mind your own business…” that’s the way a menschlech yeshivah bochur talks to someone expressing concerns about the smoking problem in E”Y, especially among yeshivah boys???? And if everyone in E”Y started using illegal drugs – that would also NOT be a chillul Hashem, because everyone does it???

    Doing something that has clearly been proved beyond all doubt to be dangerous to our own health, as well as the innocent victims around us, is something that concerns ALL of us. It is not something to look away from, or mind our own business. If smoking does not bother you, fine. If you continue to “smell” the smoke from people who do not believe it causes lung cancer, emphysema, heart problems, strokes, and just plain stinks, or if you smoke yourself, you can most likely expect a nice visit from the local pulmonologist in about 25 years, when presumably you have gained some knowledge and perspective. For your sake (and ours), I sincerely hope you will not be in need of any long-term treatment. It is not pretty. my uncle died of emphysema and every breath was excruciating torture for him in the last weeks.

    #635188
    Mayan_Dvash
    Participant

    Random, your last comment is key and I commend you for it: ….unless they do it near non smokers who mind. As long as they are sensitive to others.

    #635189
    akcc
    Participant

    To ssiy: this means that you are unable to walk the streets now? any where you go there is second hand smoke. it is your choice to walk around the others and not inhale the smoke. on a second note, if these bochurim choose to smoke then that is their problem but not for you to deal with. unless your name is on the board of the yeshiva you should let the higher ups deal with this issue. if they choose not to then maybe choose a different bais medrish.

    #635190
    random88
    Member

    yaakov: thats pure kefira and opikorsis. keep it to yourself. The Gedolim never said anything like that in regards to smoking and neither can you. Was the Steipler Gaon not a “talmid chacham, kadosh, or a chasid”? Plenty of Gedolim smoked and some still do.

    #635191
    areivimzehlazeh
    Participant

    random- nobody is perfect. Knocking someone doesn’t make your opinion right. Don’t try to build yourself up by putting SSIY down

    #635192
    Y.W. Editor
    Keymaster

    random88, check your email.

    #635193
    areivimzehlazeh
    Participant

    oomis- way to go!

    #635194
    flash
    Member

    easy solution, get the Rabbonim to issue a ruling, that no girls are allowed to date/marry any boys that smoke. That will end it quite quickly

    #635195
    areivimzehlazeh
    Participant

    random- why do you keep saying “keep it to yourself”- are you the only one that’s allowed to express his opinion?? Please, do us all a favor and chillax…. or dismiis yourself from the CR. We haven’t heard such harsh posts in a long while

    #635196
    ssiy
    Participant

    To Mottel1 thanks for the support. I just had a Hoarah from the current Daf Yomi. “Adom Muad Loalem” The gemara says you have a chiyuv to lock up your wild ox so that it will damage someone else’s property. How much more so do you have a chiyuv to control yourself when you are being a blatant Mazik. Once again how many Isurim is a smoker oiver. I am not asking them to stop (though they should make that decision on their own using a little seichel and hard work to over come their addiction) just please don’t smoke in front of me.

    #635197
    random88
    Member

    oomis. your right. “dumb” was not appropriate. in this day and age everyone knows smoking kills. so if they do it what could i possibly tell them to stop? it kills? they know that! Its assur? they know damaging your health is assur. all we could do is tell them to smoke away from non smokers who mind and eventually hopefully they will come to their senses and stop

    #635198
    sammyjoe
    Member

    heres a solution: go back to America and mind your own business. Who in the world made you a in charge of what people do.

    #635199
    random88
    Member

    sorry areivim and yakov. that was too harsh

    #635200
    Itzik_s
    Member

    BS”D

    Anon – this goes back to the famous Surgeon General’s Report on smoking.

    I think that nowadays there are so few pipe smokers that statistics are not kept. In my 18 years of smoking (1988-2004) I saw so many tobacconists, pipemakers and brands of tobacco disappear in both the US and Europe because of waning interest in pipe smoking. In the frum world, I do not think you could put together a minyan of pipe smokers in any major frum neighborhood these days.

    #635201
    anon for this
    Participant

    Itzik_s,

    Can you find a source for this study online? I’d be interested in checking it out.

    #635203
    dd
    Member

    A poster above says that pipe smokers live longer than non-smokers.

    Let’s see what research says:

    Journal of the National Cancer Institute (Henley et al, 2004) “Current pipe smoking, compared with never use of tobacco, was associated with an increased risk of death from cancers of the lung, oropharynx, esophagus, colorectum, pancreas, and larynx, and from coronary heart disease, cerebrovascular disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. These risks were generally smaller than those associated with cigarette smoking and similar to or larger than those associated with cigar smoking. Relative risks of lung cancer showed statistically significant increases with number of pipes smoked per day, years of smoking, and depth of inhalation and decreases with years since quitting. Conclusion: Results from this large prospective study suggest that pipe smoking confers a risk of tobacco-associated disease similar to cigar smoking.”

    #635204
    VeryRandom
    Member

    Dear ssiy, let me start that i learned in the Mir recently and that i am not a smoker nor have i ever been. Firstly its not too surprising that your user name is one letter short of “sisy”, be a little bit of a man and handle a little smoke, what are you gonna say next that there shouldnt be any Firemen they’re inhaling smoke plenty of time and still choose their lifestyles in order to help others?! Did you ever think that maybe smoking for a Yeshivah Bachur is a relaxing way for him to “chill” from his lifestyle of hopefully learning all day! Secondly, talk to some ppl who were in the mir years ago, THEY USED TO SMOKE IN THE BEIS MEDRASH!! And as you probably know now they no longer allow it so obviously the yeshivah is somewhat dealing with the problem! Give it some time! Israel only passed its laws about smoking indoors recently, so give that some time as well!! Im assuming your an american, your just not used to the smoke, there are plenty places worse than the Mir. Finaly, if you wanna deal with problems i say you start with yours first. You Say you’re currently in the Mir “Learning!? Why do you even have a computer? And why are you waisting yout time posting about “problem”,.You deal with your “learning” and growing into a “ben torah” and let the hanhala deal with the problems. As far as i know the Mir seems like a pretty sucesfull Yeshivah. I mean hey, You chose to go there after all for some reason!!!!!!

    #635205
    Beautiful galaxy
    Participant

    to ssiy: you should get together with my second Seder chavrusa he’s also fanatic and obsessed with this. I also think cellphones in the beis is a bigger chilul hashem. it is a big problem, but unfortunately there many other big fish for gedolim to catch . like the Internet , Internet on cellphones drugs etc.

    #635206
    JayMatt19
    Participant

    >>easy solution, get the Rabbonim to issue a ruling, that no girls are allowed to date/marry any boys that smoke. That will end it quite quickly <<

    As if we do not have enough of a shidduch crisis, now we need to remove a large amount of boys from the “shidduch pool”

    As I said before, in 2000, there were signs all over Mea Sharim and other neighborhoods about a psak signed by about 35 gedolim (ones people have heard of) stating that “due to new information, smoking is dangerous. It is forbidden to start, we encourage those who have to quit, and if one must smoke, one should do it away from others.”

    The signs were up no more than 48 hours. I’d see people ripping them down in front of Zichron Moshe before lighting up.

    Incidentally, this psak came out the same time the no-internet psak came out in Eretz Yisroel.

    As for those who say that it is none of their business what they do and how they do it. Next time you are on a plane, take a window seat and break open your window mid-flight. When anyone tries to stop you remind them YOU have the Window seat and YOU want the window open and THEY can mind their own business.

    #635207
    dd
    Member

    I can not believe that jOjO said “Thanks g-d my kids smoke cigarettes while in Brisk and the Mir.”

    Are you really a parent? Don’t you care that their actions make it less likely that they will be around to raise your grandchildren?

    #635208
    mazal77
    Participant

    OOmis, you said it so perfectly. I tried responding to some of the comments that did not seem fitting for the coffee room, but my post was not approved ;). I just wanted to say thank you for writing what I was thinking.

    #635209
    akcc
    Participant

    maybe they should raise the tax on the cigs and then ppl wont be able to afford it and give it up. after all the parents of these boys wont be able to shell out that much a month for their addiction. lets face, who is giving these boys money while in yeshiva? lets stop it at the source.

    #635210
    VeryRandom
    Member

    Also second hand smoke isnt what comes out of your mouth, but rather what comes out of the other end of the cigarette. How could second hand smoke be worse if its what comes out of the mouth of the first hand smoker?? So when someone exhales into your face its not that bad, it has already went through the filter of the cig, and then through the filter of lungs, which removed all the bad particles from the smoke. And there is no issur in smoking, ask a posek

    #635211
    VeryRandom
    Member

    btw, im not a smoker nor have i ever been. i dont know if you know this but in the past the mir allowed smoking in the beis medrash, and as you probably know its no longer allowed, so apparently the “so called problem” IS being taken care of. did you ever think that maybe smoking is a way for a bachur to relax from his strenuous lifestyle? as far as i know the mir seems like one of the top places to lear, after all you did choose to learn there. also a bigger problem to deal with is one that you have, your laptop! (check out the new thread about smoking vs. internet)

    #635212
    dd
    Member

    VeryRandom says “there is no issur in smoking, ask a posek”.

    You’ve got to be kidding! Is there any posek who gives a heter for starting smoking?

    From Rav Dovid Bistricer (via OU):

    #635213
    anon for this
    Participant

    dd, thanks for the cite. I’d really like to see a cite for the study Itzik_s mentioned. I wonder if it’s from the same era as advertisements claiming “most doctors prefer cigarette brand x”.

    #635214
    VeryRandom
    Member

    to whom it may concern, i saw this thread and had to get involved so i registered. my name is in tribute to random88!

    #635215
    ES WHY
    Member

    I am glad that you can say thaat you don’t smoke. It is a beautiful thing. As you have said that you are only there since Elul, I have learned in Eretz Yisrael for 4 years and a Zman. in a 3 different Yeshivas my last 4 Zmanim I spent in the Mir. I know how it is as I have experienced it first hand, alot of my friends were smokers and I too have smoked in the past. (“Just with the boys I never bought packs exept for chossen Schmeffs when I got engaged”) Part of being in Israel is develop your sense of self and understanding of other people, in life we learn that we cannot fix the world. The Rabonim have in the past issued Kol Koreh about smoking, I also remember that one time a Chareidi Magazine or news paper had a contest who could make the best add against smoking. There was one with a Striemel being used as an ash tray, and many other ones that were simply great. There are certain places that no one ever smokes, like on a bus. The reason being is probably bacause you simply can’t walk away. I saw a previously saw a comment about the fact that you are on the internet so late at night. Which cafe do you go to? The one near Hilel? Strudel? Net games? I can attest that I think going to these places are probably worse than smoking. Images that one may see on the internet in these places (EVEN BY ACCIDENT) will remain in you for many years.

    The idea that I am trying too bring out is tha we all have our personal issues and shortcommigs that we need to work on. While one persons issue may be staying up till 4 in the morning, and destroying the next day, (and his Neshama while he is at it) the other person may have a smoking issue, but at least he did not absorb all kinds of Shmutz into his brain and destroy his day of learning.

    We all need to learn how to work on our own problems and not the other persons problems.

    Let the Gedolim work on them.I am sure that as you meet new friends and build lasting friendships those who know that you are bothered by smoke will not do so in your presence.

    The main thing is understanding, if you show a understanding to them, they will understand you. Also at times you must be firm, leave the room if need be. I am not telling you to damage yourself.

    I wish you sincere success in your learning and I hope you have an amazing experience in your years in Eretz Yisrael, Both Spiritually and physically.

    Feel free to reply.

    #635216
    Itzik_s
    Member

    BS”D

    -depth of inhalation-

    That looks like a skewed study that somehow found rednecks in the Appalachians who inhale pipe smoke. And that does not surprise me because the number of proper pipe smokers is so low.

    The real risk with pipe smoking is oral malignancy. It is a real risk for constant pipe smokers but it really is hard to smoke more than one or 2 big pipefuls a day.

    #635217
    random88
    Member

    thank you veryrandom. i am deeply touched. us normal bochurim see eye to eye on this ‘issue’

    #635218
    akcc
    Participant

    BTW i recent quit cigs and went onto cigars. if the bochurim need to smoke something then let it be cigars. first they are a lot more relaxing and enjoyable. second they don’t have the same harsh effects as cigs do. they may cost more but there is pleasure in smoking them. this is still not a solution but its certainly better.

    #635219
    misterzee
    Member

    my son learns in mir brachtfeld,he reports that no serious self respecting bochur smokes.i am a cancer patient,i invite all those idiots who smoke to tak ea tour at the lung cancer ward,big talkers small heads.i dont care who or how chashuv the smoke ris,with todays medical info you are an idiot to smoke as well as if you are 100 pounds overweight.

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