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Posted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:41 pm
by Buckwheat
Hi all,
I just realized I have been making an assumption, and I want to verify I am correct. I understand that monks are not to pull weeds, and I think this is a rule set forth to ensure monks do not damage crops which would irritate their donors.

My question: It is OK for non-monastics to pull weeds, right? By this I mean that it does not generate any particualar kamma for "killing" the weeds as they are not sentient beings.

Re: Yardwork

Posted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 6:18 pm
by Bhikkhu Pesala
As long is you're not pulling up weed to smoke, or killing Buckwheat with weed-killer its OK!

Nevertheless, though plants are not sentient beings, bad kamma is involved if its done for the sake of wanton destruction.

Re: Yardwork

Posted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:02 pm
by Buckwheat
Thanks, Bhante. :anjali:

Re: Yardwork

Posted: Mon Jul 16, 2012 10:57 pm
by Ben
Hi Buckwheat,

Some time back a gardening (vegetable gardening) thread was started in, I think, the health & wellbeing forum. You might want to check it out. Use it to ask questions, journalize your efforts, give and receive support.
I am currently working on eradicating an infestation of briars and hawthorn along a driveway 1km long and 10 metres wide on both sides.
I wish you luck with your weeding.
kind regards,


Re: Yardwork

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 3:02 pm
by Buckwheat
Thanks Ben,
I'm not much of a green thumb. I've been removing non-native invasive weeds so that out natural vegetation doesn't get wiped out. Esp Scotch Broom, it's incredibly aggressive here. Just wanted to make sure I'm not racking up dung beetle points (as in karma that would lead to my rebirth as a dung beetle or worse). I don't have a lot of faith in rebirth, but also trying to make the safe bet. I don't like the taste of dung.

Re: Yardwork

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 7:39 pm
by ringo
Plants are living organisms which grow in the earth and have the ability to convert sunlight into the energy they need for growth. Buddhism considers plants to be one-facultied (ekindriya) life forms (Vin.III,155). The traditional way of classifying plants in ancient India was as medical herbs (osadhī), forest-type trees (vanaspati), fruit or flower-producing trees (rukkha), shrubs (gumba), grasses (tiṇa), plants with tendrils (patāna) and vines (vallī). The Buddha classified them according to whether they are propagated by roots, stems, joints, cuttings or seeds (D.I,5). While killing a plant would not be breaking the first Precept, the Buddha encouraged his disciples to have a respect for all life including plants and not to unnecessarily damage or destroy plants, their foliage or their seeds (D.I,5). See Flowers and Trees.

A Problem of the Sentience of Plants in Earliest Buddhism, L. Schmitthausen,1991." onclick=";return false;

Re: Yardwork

Posted: Wed Jul 18, 2012 7:52 pm
by ringo
Another good article: ... of-grasses" onclick=";return false;