Throwing food

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Sam Vara
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Re: Throwing food

Post by Sam Vara » Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:45 pm

D1W1 wrote:
Wed Sep 19, 2018 4:10 pm
Sam Vara wrote:
Mon Sep 17, 2018 4:56 pm
D1W1 wrote:
Mon Sep 17, 2018 4:43 pm

Sorry I wasn't clear enough. What I meant was obtaining food is the result of good karma. The opposite, which is starve to death is the result of bad karma.
I don't think this is universally true. Not everything that comes to us is the result of our kamma.
So if someone keeps throwing the food away, which is a form of bad karma, one day the ripening of that action is suffering.
I don't think it is necessarily "bad kamma". If one throws away food with an intention based on greed, hatred, or delusion, then one day this will ripen in suffering. But if one has good intentions in throwing away food - if, say, one is concerned for the health of those around you and wants to put this rotting organic stuff where it won't harm them - then that is not bad kamma and will not ripen in suffering.
But I'm doubt the act of throwing food that is still fresh and edible is free from greed, hatred and delusion, no matter how good is the intention. The extreme example is like killing someone who suffers from chronic illness/disease with the intention to free him from suffering, that person is not free from the karma of killing.
I think you are right about killing, but I'm not sure about the idea of throwing food away being necessarily dark kamma. The Buddha never incorporated this into the lay-persons' precepts, so that makes me think that there are occasions when we can do this with purely good or neutral intent.

If nobody who one could give the food to is actually available and hungry, then what is the problem? Of course, if it is possible to save it for a later occasion, then one should do so. But consider the following situation.

1) You have some fresh edible apples in a box.
2) You have eaten your fill of them.
3) There is nowhere else to store them.
4) There is no other being nearby to whom they could be given.
5) You need the box for something else, or need to move on and cannot carry them.

Where is the dark kamma in discarding them? What else can you do with them, without giving yourself a lot of needless trouble? Under those circumstances, a person discarding the apples (or, as others here have said, "donating them to fruit flies and slugs"!) could do so without any greed or hatred in their heart. If you think there is necessarily greed, hatred, or delusion in the mind of that person, then where is it?

I think you are being influenced by a consequentialist view of morality here. i.e. "Wasted food is bad, so any course of action which has that as its consequence is bad". But the Buddha was more interested in the intention behind the action, and in this case there is no necessity for the action of throwing away food to have a bad intention.

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