Dan Dorje wrote:
http://shabkar.org/download/pdf/Steadfa ... Ethics.pdf
Question: Some claim that one can help the animals one eats by praying for them, and thus eating meat is compassionate. Other than for the most accomplished yogis and lamas, what do you make of this claim?
Answer: With supernatural powers gained through certain meditations, it is true that there are some realized beings who can revive animals from the dead and help them reach a higher rebirth or enlightenment by consuming small amounts of their flesh. But this is not done for sustenance, only for the purpose of helping that animal. I personally do not have that power and because of that I never eat meat. Eating meat in one’s diet is much different than eating flesh to liberate a being through supernatural powers. I am just an ordinary practitioner who really doesn’t have these qualities. So, if I ate meat it would be the same if you or any other lay person ate meat. I would be committing sin and I would be getting negative karma. I don’t pretend as if I have special powers and eat meat, I just avoid it altogether.
Question: Many Buddhist practitioners in the United States eat meat because their Tibetan lamas eat meat. What do you make of this?
Answer: Many great siddhas in India drank enormous amounts of alcohol and developed magical powers. One of these mahasiddhas (Virupa) kept drinking alcohol all day and suspended the sun in the sky and kept it from setting.[i] Naropa, Tilopa—these were great masters. If you can acquire supernatural powers, you don’t need to follow the same standards of normal people and you can drink alcohol and eat meat. Those who have supernatural powers can still give great teachings and benefit all sentient beings. So, if the teachers in America are of that level, ask all your friends to join them in drinking alcohol and eating meat. * It all depends on the level of realization one has achieved. A lama who enjoys meat and alcohol can still bring people on the right path, so long as they have developed supernatural powers.
Chatral Rinpoche, Compassionate Action
So basically, a great yogi, HH Chatral Rinpoche, says that he has no power to help animals by eating them...
This is fair, and I often quoted it myself when I was
younger and a bit more fanatical about vegetarianism.
I'm a bit more open minded now, due to cognitive dissonance
based on close relationships with very realized Dudjom lamas, some
of them quite close disciples of Chatral Rinpoche and some of them Dudjom
family. Now, Chatral Rinpoche has a good point, but he is also a disciple
of HH Dudjom Rinpoche and was very close with Dungse Thinley Norbu Rinpoche.
These are both widely recognized Mahasiddhas. However, they
advised their students to eat meat, both to overcome
dualistic fixation and clinging regarding diet- as in ganapuja-
and also from a POV of understanding the subtle body and building
of tiglè important in higher yana practices. I have immense faith in these lamas and
Rinpoches as well as Chatral Rinpoche. It's a koan or an exercise in non duality
simply to reconcile these two seemingly opposing views and advice from realized beings who
are at similar levels of attainment. I used to just "side" with Chatral Rinpoche's view
because that was close to the view I held myself, even before I truly entered the Dharma.
But now I'm able to appreciate both views, and it makes me far less judgmental and
thus my relationships with others are improved.