the great vegetarian debate

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Ron-The-Elder
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Ron-The-Elder » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:19 am

But, that is the whole point. Laypersons are held to the same standards as monks under Right Livelihood. If we support butchery then we are in effect supporting wrong livelihood. :buddha2:
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A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

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retrofuturist
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by retrofuturist » Mon Jul 23, 2012 1:28 am

Greetings Ron,
Ron-The-Elder wrote:If we support butchery then we are in effect supporting wrong livelihood. :buddha2:
If that's your interpretation of the Dhamma, then by all means do what you think best as a layman. No one will stop you being vegetarian.

However, to call the Vinaya laid down for mendicants a "cop out" is over-reaching and disrespectful to the Buddha.

Metta,
Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Cittasanto
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Cittasanto » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:42 am

Ron-The-Elder wrote:But, that is the whole point. Laypersons are held to the same standards as monks under Right Livelihood. If we support butchery then we are in effect supporting wrong livelihood. :buddha2:
Lay People are by far not held to the same standard, if we were we would have 227/311 rules also and there would be no difference!
the forms of livelihood are different, and are not refering to shoping habbits for personal use, rather being a middle man!
Mendicants go on alms, to support themselves, they get acts of generosity which are not hinted at & the rest, Lay-People go out to work earn money through various means, and it is this earning of money which is refered to, something which is wrong livelihood for a mendicant.
do note that the list of wrong livelihood for a mendicant is far more inclusive of things not specific for a lay person who only has 5 mentioned.
Last edited by Cittasanto on Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
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He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
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He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Cittasanto » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:43 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Ron,
Ron-The-Elder wrote:If we support butchery then we are in effect supporting wrong livelihood. :buddha2:
If that's your interpretation of the Dhamma, then by all means do what you think best as a layman. No one will stop you being vegetarian.

However, to call the Vinaya laid down for mendicants a "cop out" is over-reaching and disrespectful to the Buddha.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Well-Said!
:anjali: :anjali: :anjali:
although I would add, especially when you do not know the rules in full, and only have access to interpretations.
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He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill

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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Dinsdale » Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:16 am

Ron-The-Elder wrote: If we support butchery then we are in effect supporting wrong livelihood. :buddha2:
Good point.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Dinsdale » Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:18 am

Durt_Dawg wrote:Sigh... its not about break da rule or Buddha said "no". It's about how much compassion you have or how much you want to cultivate ya compassion!
The spirit of the Buddhist precepts is certainly about non-harm, and I agree that obsession with the rules - the letter of the law - is completely missing the point. It's a bit like the difference between tax evasion and tax avoidance. ;)
Last edited by Dinsdale on Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:22 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Dinsdale » Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:20 am

Cittasanto wrote:
porpoise wrote:
Cittasanto wrote:yes and on that we agree, yet you are twisting a rule out of shape to draw that conclusion.
So it's OK to buy a turkey "off the shelf" at a butchers, but it's not OK to go into the butchers and order a Christmas turkey?
like I said "the best that rule could inform lay practice is"
The intention of the 3-fold rule is that we should not cause another life to be taken. In the example above it seems to me that both options result in another turkey being killed.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by cooran » Mon Jul 23, 2012 8:56 am

Hello all,

I seem to post this every year or so in this thread.

These articles present the Theravada understanding of what the Buddha taught regarding vegetarianism.

What the Buddha said about eating Meat ~ Ajahn Brahmavamso
http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/ebsut034.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

On Vegetarianism ~ Binh Anson
http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/ebdha022.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Buddhism and Vegetarianism - Ajahn Jagaro
http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/ebdha151.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Buddhism and Vegetarianism - The Rationale for the Buddha's Views on the Consumption of Meat by Dr V. A. Gunasekara
http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/ebdha069.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Are You Herbivore or Carnivore?
A Critical Analysis on Issues of Vegetarianism - Breaking Out Among the Buddhists for Centuries
- by Jan Sanjivaputta
http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/ebdha156.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Vegetarianism - Venerable K. Sri Dhammananda Maha Thera
http://www.buddhanet.net/budsas/ebud/ebdha189.htm" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

with metta
Chris
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Cittasanto » Mon Jul 23, 2012 3:48 pm

porpoise wrote: The intention of the 3-fold rule is that we should not cause another life to be taken. In the example above it seems to me that both options result in another turkey being killed.
hI Porpoise,
please read what else I have said on the matter of that rule.

it is not a rule for lay people, and is layed down for mendicants for a reason
Blog, Suttas, Aj Chah, Facebook.

He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill

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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Ron-The-Elder » Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:03 pm

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Ron,
Ron-The-Elder wrote:If we support butchery then we are in effect supporting wrong livelihood. :buddha2:
If that's your interpretation of the Dhamma, then by all means do what you think best as a layman. No one will stop you being vegetarian.

However, to call the Vinaya laid down for mendicants a "cop out" is over-reaching and disrespectful to the Buddha.

Metta,
Retro. :)
Metta back to you, Retro, and I mean no disrespect to The Buddha. When I see these inconsistencies in supposedly "What the Buddha said" I get this sick feeling that subsequent translators of The Dhamma snuck in their particular biases for whatever their own reasons. On another forum we started a thread entitled "false teachings". Perhaps we need one here which points out such inconsistencies. For example in Saddhammapatirupaka Sutta: A Counterfeit of the True Dhamma Buddha explained that we had to expect this and to be alert for this ourselves:
On one occasion the Blessed One was staying near Savatthi in Jeta's Grove, Anathapindika's monastery. Then Ven. Maha Kassapa went to the Blessed One and on arrival, having bowed down to him, sat to one side. As he was sitting there he said to the Blessed One, "What is the cause, lord, what is the reason, why before there were fewer training rules and yet more monks established in final gnosis, whereas now there are more training rules and yet fewer monks established in final gnosis?"

"That's the way it is, Kassapa. When beings are degenerating and the true Dhamma is disappearing, there are more training rules and yet fewer monks established in final gnosis. There is no disappearance of the true Dhamma as long as a counterfeit of the true Dhamma has not arisen in the world, but there is the disappearance of the true Dhamma when a counterfeit of the true Dhamma has arisen in the world. Just as there is no disappearance of gold as long as a counterfeit of gold has not arisen in the world, but there is the disappearance of gold when a counterfeit of gold has arisen in the world, in the same way there is no disappearance of the true Dhamma as long as a counterfeit of the true Dhamma has not arisen in the world, but there is the disappearance of the true Dhamma when a counterfeit of the true Dhamma has arisen in the world.[1]

"It's not the earth property that makes the true Dhamma disappear. It's not the water property... the fire property... the wind property that makes the true Dhamma disappear.[2] It's worthless people who arise right here [within the Sangha] who make the true Dhamma disappear. The true Dhamma doesn't disappear the way a boat sinks all at once.

"These five downward-leading qualities tend to the confusion and disappearance of the true Dhamma. Which five? There is the case where the monks, nuns, male lay followers, & female lay followers live without respect, without deference, for the Teacher. They live without respect, without deference, for the Dhamma... for the Sangha... for the Training... for concentration. These are the five downward-leading qualities that tend to the confusion and disappearance of the true Dhamma.

"But these five qualities tend to the stability, the non-confusion, the non-disappearance of the true Dhamma. Which five? There is the case where the monks, nuns, male lay followers, & female lay followers live with respect, with deference, for the Teacher. They live with respect, with deference, for the Dhamma... for the Sangha... for the Training... for concentration. These are the five qualities that tend to the stability, the non-confusion, the non-disappearance of the true Dhamma."

source: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
True respect for The Buddha's words is to follow his teachings not defending one's personal views. :anjali: Ron
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

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Ron-The-Elder
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Ron-The-Elder » Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:12 pm

cooran wrote:Hello all,

I seem to post this every year or so in this thread.

These articles present the Theravada understanding of what the Buddha taught regarding vegetarianism.

with metta
Chris
Thanks, Chris. I enjoy reading these every year. :anjali: Ron
What Makes an Elder? :
A head of gray hairs doesn't mean one's an elder. Advanced in years, one's called an old fool.
But one in whom there is truth, restraint, rectitude, gentleness,self-control, he's called an elder, his impurities disgorged, enlightened.
-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

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marc108
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by marc108 » Mon Jul 23, 2012 5:49 pm

Bhante Sujato's blog post on why Buddhists should be vegetarian is very convincing imo. He brings up some interesting points, especially re: the Suttas not being the end all be all of ethics, ex: the Suttas lack of commentary on things like slavery.


http://sujato.wordpress.com/2012/01/28/ ... xtra-cute/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The Buddha clearly didnt ban eating meat directly, probably because his monks would have starved to death or placed undue burden on their lay supporters, but his basic 'code of conduct', re: the precept & the 8 fold path doesn't allow for animals to be traded or slaughtered for food.
"It's easy for us to connect with what's wrong with us... and not so easy to feel into, or to allow us, to connect with what's right and what's good in us."

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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by LonesomeYogurt » Mon Jul 23, 2012 6:36 pm

Cittasanto wrote:hI Porpoise,
please read what else I have said on the matter of that rule.

it is not a rule for lay people, and is layed down for mendicants for a reason
We all know that this is true. Placing dead flesh in your mouth is definitely allowable in Buddhism. But what you have failed to answer is the larger question: If the practice of eating meat causes suffering in both humans and animals, and we as Buddhists know that this is the case, can we have omnivorous diets while still maintaining our compassion and good will towards all beings?

Everyone agrees you can eat meat; I'm asking whether or not you should.
Gain and loss, status and disgrace,
censure and praise, pleasure and pain:
these conditions among human beings are inconstant,
impermanent, subject to change.

Knowing this, the wise person, mindful,
ponders these changing conditions.
Desirable things don’t charm the mind,
undesirable ones bring no resistance.

His welcoming and rebelling are scattered,
gone to their end,
do not exist.
- Lokavipatti Sutta

Stuff I write about things.

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Cittasanto
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by Cittasanto » Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:14 pm

Hi Marc
marc108 wrote:The Buddha clearly didnt ban eating meat directly, probably because his monks would have starved to death or placed undue burden on their lay supporters, but his basic 'code of conduct', re: the precept & the 8 fold path doesn't allow for animals to be traded or slaughtered for food.
Yes there are legitimate reasons without taking rules designed for mendicants out of context

[conduct changed to context]
Last edited by Cittasanto on Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Blog, Suttas, Aj Chah, Facebook.

He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them.
But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion …
...
He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill

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marc108
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Post by marc108 » Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:28 pm

Cittasanto wrote:Hi Marc
marc108 wrote:The Buddha clearly didnt ban eating meat directly, probably because his monks would have starved to death or placed undue burden on their lay supporters, but his basic 'code of conduct', re: the precept & the 8 fold path doesn't allow for animals to be traded or slaughtered for food.
Yes there are legitimate reasons without taking rules designed for mendicants out of conduct.
i dont understand what you mean?
"It's easy for us to connect with what's wrong with us... and not so easy to feel into, or to allow us, to connect with what's right and what's good in us."

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