Jewish Health & Healing Practices
Judaism’s response was to institutionalize the use of alcohol at moderate levels and in controlled circumstances, such as Kiddush (the prayer sanctifying the day) on Shabbat and festivals. The result seems to have been, until recently at least, a relatively low incidence of alcoholism within the Jewish community.
Smoking, on the other hand, has only recently been perceived as a serious danger; in prior centuries, it had even been praised. All rabbinical authorities today urge against it, but, because of its prevalence and the desire not to declare large number of Jews lawbreakers, only a few have actually ruled that smoking is a specific violation of Jewish law.
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