the great vegetarian debate

No holds barred discussion on the Buddhadharma. Argue about rebirth, karma, commentarial interpretations etc. Be nice to each other.

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Simon E. » Thu Dec 19, 2013 1:01 pm

I have absolutely no intention of perpetuating yet more dialogue of the deaf.
porpoise, let me put this as clearly as I can.
I do not care what you eat.
I do not care about your opinion of what I eat.
I eat what I choose.
I am an an adult. I was probably considering these issues long before you were born.
I reached my own conclusions on the matter.
There is no Pan Buddhist approach to diet.

I.dont.care. what.you.think...Really.
And I suggest that you practice not caring what I think. Its called upeksha.

:namaste:
Last edited by Simon E. on Thu Dec 19, 2013 1:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Simon E. » Thu Dec 19, 2013 1:13 pm

Just to add...I suspect that those who advocate vegetarianism, or who are guilt racked because they think they should do not appreciate the full width of the divide here.
So we get constant pleas to justify meat eating...
I have nowhere tried to justify meat eating. I have pointed out the technical impossibility of vegetarianism.
I am no more interested in justifying meat eating than I am in justifying wearing trousers or driving a car. They are cultural norms. I am fine with them.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Thu Dec 19, 2013 1:45 pm

porpoise wrote:1. In modern farming most animals bred for meat are fed on grain.
2. This is a very inefficient way of feeding people. It takes 7 or 8 times as much grain when the grain is fed to animals and the animals are then eaten, compared to feeding people directly with grain.


OK. Though grain-based, meatless diet is not what every human single being could survive, let alone thrive, on. Nor is it universally feasible - there are places where you just can't produce grain, or the production will always be insufficient, and the local people cannot import grain for various reasons.

porpoise wrote:3. Eating meat leads to more grain being cultivated and therefore more small creatures dying.


The second "more" here is debatable. We couldn't really count, in any case. And, as others have suggested there are other problems with your statement. But that's not very important in the end because:

porpoise wrote:4. The meat industry works on supply and demand.


Demand ans supply is not what you think it is. As has been said a hundred times. You just choose to ignore it.

porpoise wrote:5. Most of us have a choice, we don't have to add to this demand.


Most of us? Us meaning whom? Neither most human beings, nor most Buddhists have anything like a choice here. As again lots of people have been telling you. You're just prefering to ignore them.

porpoise wrote:6. Relevant Buddhist teachings on this issue include: 1st precept, 3-fold rule, butchery as wrong livelihood, developing wisdom and compassion.


There are other relevant Buddhist teachings on this issue - Vajrayana and Dzogchen ones, for instance. Again, you choose to ignore them.

porpoise wrote:7. The only positive argument for eating meat we've seen in this debate is basically "I like eating meat".


This means that:

1. You don't read your opponents' posts, or
2. You don't understand what your opponents are saying, or
3. You're lying. Or trolling.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby treehuggingoctopus » Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:04 pm

porpoise wrote:
Simon E. wrote:There is no Pan-Buddhist or Pan-Vajrayana view of meat eating. That is the undisputed fact.


Is anyone claiming there is a pan-Buddhist view? It seems like yet another strawman.

I'd be really interested to hear some positive, reasoned arguments in favour of meat-eating, beyond "I like eating it". Arguments which take into account Buddhist teachings like the first precept and 3-fold rule, developing compassion, etc.


In the first paragraph you're saying in effect that there are many Buddhist takes on what we should and shouldn't eat.
In the second paragraph you're implying (just as you do everywhere throughout the thread) that any proper Buddhist stance on eating must be vegetarian.

:shrug:
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Jigme Tsultrim » Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:09 pm

porpoise wrote:The only positive argument for eating meat we've seen in this debate is basically "I like eating meat".

Really? I guess you missed my post about supporting the livelihoods of my neighbors. Convenient.
Many of the Buddhist countries I listed have no "meat industry".
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:47 pm

porpoise wrote:The only positive argument for eating meat we've seen in this debate is basically "I like eating meat".


I do it because otherwise, domesticated pigs,
which do not give us milk or lay eggs,
and have no natural habitat,
would become extinct.

No, actually, I eat meat when offered to me
so as to be a grateful recipient.
You may not agree with that motivation,
but it is a positive one.
.
.
.
Last edited by PadmaVonSamba on Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:47 pm

Jigme Tsultrim wrote:Regarding monks vows against eating meat, which monks? Thai monks, Tibetan monks eat meat.


Nearly all SE Asian monks, except Japanese in recent times due to government involvement in temple affairs. For example Chinese monks including taiwanese monks, Korean monks, Vietnamese monks, etc. nearly all vegetarian by vows. Near all of zen is vegetarian, except for Japanese. All the temples that I attend, it is forbidden by temple rules to even bring meat onto the premises. And of course, they don't refuse to mow the lawn there...because that's just ridiculous...There are also a number of Tibetan monks who do not eat meat. To say that all Tibetan monks eat meat is not accurate.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:52 pm

treehuggingoctopus wrote:
seeker242 wrote:What ever happened to "reasonable discussion"?


I don't think you're the one who should be complaining about the lack of reason in this discussion.


You think calling someone a hypocrite because they mow the lawn is reasonable? Really? Alright then... :roll:
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Thu Dec 19, 2013 2:59 pm

Simon E. wrote:At least we have reason to believe that seeker242 practices what he preaches. Even if he never ever stops preaching in a totally self defeating way.


Self defeating? Good thing it has nothing to do with myself then! But when it comes to speaking on behalf of animals, like I said before, what I have been doing has worked well so far. Like I said before, I've lost track of the number of people I have convinced to stop eating meat. You could say it's self defeating, but it doesn't matter if it is or not, since it's not for myself to begin with.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Norwegian » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:05 pm

It is reasonable because you cherrypick what to follow and not follow from a sutra. Which actually is not my problem at all nor something I concern myself with. But however it is worth pointing out, that in your cherrypicking, you also exclaim the virtues of the purity of vegetarianism/veganism, and thereafter criticize eating meat, and meat eaters - even if they've not killed to get that meat, or requested animals to be killed to get that meat. So you see, when a sutra says that meat eaters - even those who don't kill or request animals to be killed - are great rakshasas, and are pretty much hellbound, it is quite interesting to me then that you ignore the fact that the same sutra says Bodhisattvas should not even step upon grass, much less cut grass, for the sole fact of all the sentient beings that reside there, which will get injured and killed. Imagine then what a lawnmower does to them.

So yes, to me, when you point your finger at others for eating meat, and thereafter go outside mowing your lawn, you're a hypocrite. I understand very well that samsara is complex, complicated, and full of misery from beginning til end. It's not possible to live a perfect life in samsara. That is its nature. But your attitude about this issue is completely wrong. If you actually have to mow the lawn, and there's no way out of it, then you do what you have to do. But perhaps it would be pertinent then to keep a lower and more humble voice in a topic such as this one.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Simon E. » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:09 pm

seeker242 wrote:
Simon E. wrote:At least we have reason to believe that seeker242 practices what he preaches. Even if he never ever stops preaching in a totally self defeating way.


Self defeating? Good thing it has nothing to do with myself then! But when it comes to speaking on behalf of animals, like I said before, what I have been doing has worked well so far. Like I said before, I've lost track of the number of people I have convinced to stop eating meat. You could say it's self defeating, but it doesn't matter if it is or not, since it's not for myself to begin with.

Yes...once more you appear not to understand a commonly used expression.
A common motif.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Simon E. » Thu Dec 19, 2013 3:11 pm

Norwegian wrote:It is reasonable because you cherrypick what to follow and not follow from a sutra. Which actually is not my problem at all nor something I concern myself with. But however it is worth pointing out, that in your cherrypicking, you also exclaim the virtues of the purity of vegetarianism/veganism, and thereafter criticize eating meat, and meat eaters - even if they've not killed to get that meat, or requested animals to be killed to get that meat. So you see, when a sutra says that meat eaters - even those who don't kill or request animals to be killed - are great rakshasas, and are pretty much hellbound, it is quite interesting to me then that you ignore the fact that the same sutra says Bodhisattvas should not even step upon grass, much less cut grass, for the sole fact of all the sentient beings that reside there, which will get injured and killed. Imagine then what a lawnmower does to them.

So yes, to me, when you point your finger at others for eating meat, and thereafter go outside mowing your lawn, you're a hypocrite. I understand very well that samsara is complex, complicated, and full of misery from beginning til end. It's not possible to live a perfect life in samsara. That is its nature. But your attitude about this issue is completely wrong. If you actually have to mow the lawn, and there's no way out of it, then you do what you have to do. But perhaps it would be pertinent then to keep a lower and more humble voice in a topic such as this one.

Hear hear ! :twothumbsup:
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby porpoise » Thu Dec 19, 2013 4:31 pm

Simon E. wrote:I reached my own conclusions on the matter.


And clearly you are sticking to them, and clearly you're not interested in discussing the substantive points relating to Buddhist ethics. Well, OK, but why are you even here? :rolleye:
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Simon E. » Thu Dec 19, 2013 4:56 pm

porpoise wrote:
Simon E. wrote:I reached my own conclusions on the matter.


And clearly you are sticking to them, and clearly you're not interested in discussing the substantive points relating to Buddhist ethics. Well, OK, but why are you even here? :rolleye:

Once more, I am here as testament to the fact that despite the best efforts of a few there is no 'Buddhist' stance on the issue.
There is in fact a spectrum of views.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Jigme Tsultrim » Thu Dec 19, 2013 4:58 pm

porpoise wrote:
Simon E. wrote:I reached my own conclusions on the matter.


And clearly you are sticking to them, and clearly you're not interested in discussing the substantive points relating to Buddhist ethics. Well, OK, but why are you even here? :rolleye:

Dramatic cartoon eyeroll notwithstanding, It's clear from what I've seen here that the opposite is true. Those on the other side of you pov for the most part have merely been defending a balanced and tolerant, and may I say realistic, view. This is contrasted to the dogmatic and judgemental statements so often made by yourself, seeker, and a few others. I've seen none here claim that you are non-Buddhist or have no right to be vegetarian. I have seen comments of this sort made by the militant vegetarians.
Correct me if I am wrong, but I seem to recall prohibitions about creating schisms and divisive speech.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Adamantine » Thu Dec 19, 2013 5:06 pm

Topic temporarily locked. Once again, people are resorting to ad hominem attacks instead of the strengths of their arguments. Attacking anyone personally, even if they are frustrating debate partners, is against the TOS. It is 100% voluntary to participate here on DW, and in this specific thread. If you can't play nice, then don't play.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Adamantine » Wed Jan 08, 2014 8:42 pm

OK this thread, in the spirit in which it was created, will remain open once again to continue the endless debate. But for the umpteenth time: no ad hominem attacks or bickering. Focus on the strength of your argument, or the weakness of the other's... but don't comment on the person. Thanks! :twothumbsup:
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby pueraeternus » Thu Jan 09, 2014 6:18 pm

Another look at the benefits of shifting more towards non-meat consumption:

http://www1.umn.edu/news/news-releases/ ... 51697.html

Existing Cropland Could Feed 4 Billion More
New University of Minnesota research shows reallocating croplands away from fuels and animal feed could boost food available for people by 70 percent without clearing more land

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (08/01/2013) —The world’s croplands could feed 4 billion more people than they do now just by shifting from producing animal feed and biofuels to producing exclusively food for human consumption, according to new research from the Institute on the Environment at the University of Minnesota.

Even a smaller, partial shift from crop-intensive livestock such as feedlot beef to food animals such as chicken or pork could increase agricultural efficiency and provide food for millions, the study says.

"We essentially have uncovered an astoundingly abundant supply of food for a hungry world, hidden in plain sight in the farmlands we already cultivate," says graduate research assistant Emily Cassidy, lead author of the paper published in Environmental Research Letters. "Depending on the extent to which farmers and consumers are willing to change current practices, existing croplands could feed millions or even billions more people."


Erm, before I get attacked verbally, mystically or otherwise:

The researchers emphasized that they are not making diet prescriptions or recommendations, just pointing out opportunities for gains in food production. They noted that humans can completely meet protein needs with plant-based diets, but that crop systems would need to shift (e.g., toward more production of protein-rich legumes) to meet human dietary needs.

"The good news is that we already produce enough calories to feed a few billion more people," Cassidy says. "As our planet gets more crowded or we experience disasters like droughts and pests, we can find ways of using existing croplands more efficiently."
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Simon E. » Thu Jan 09, 2014 8:10 pm

No ' attacks ' from me . Just a pointing out of the obvious
Human beings have only a tentative relationship with logic,which fact is a source of great strength and creativity as well as frustration.
A result of this tentative relationship is that we can construct as logical and argument for a given cause as is possible, and it may well fall on totally deaf ears.
I predict that the vast majority are not about to swap meat for grain however compelling one might find the reasons for so doing .
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby pueraeternus » Thu Jan 09, 2014 8:41 pm

Simon E. wrote:I predict that the vast majority are not about to swap meat for grain however compelling one might find the reasons for so doing .


The vast majority are also not going to give up the three poisons, however compelling one might find the reasons for so doing. But then again, Buddhists are not exactly known to be realistic.
When I set out to lead humanity along my Golden Path I promised a lesson their bones would remember. I know a profound pattern humans deny with words even while their actions affirm it. They say they seek security and quiet, conditions they call peace. Even as they speak, they create seeds of turmoil and violence.

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