Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, president of the Shas Council of Torah Sages, has warned his followers of the dangers of smoking, and stressed the importance and plausibility of quitting if one is already addicted. “Doctors are against smoking; they say it causes lung cancer. Whoever can refrain from it, all the better; he should take every effort to keep away from it,” the senior Sephardi adjudicator said in his Saturday night televised sermon, which dealt with the laws of Jewish holidays.
“A person who is used to smoking – it’s hard to quit, but [he] should distance himself from it a step at a time,” he continued.
“My father-in-law, Rabbi Avraham of blessed memory, used to smoke two packs a day.
I told him our holy books say it is a danger. He said, ‘What can I do? I’m used to smoking.’ I told him to gradually cut down in the cigarettes. When he reached 10, he said, ‘I can’t go down any more,’” he said. Read more in Jersualem Post.