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 Mr. G » Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:37 am

Willy wrote:Trycicle magazine


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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Sat Dec 31, 2011 7:22 am

David N. Snyder wrote:I see one extreme form of vegetarians that condemn meat eaters and consider them to not be Buddhist. And then there is another extreme of meat eaters who believe all vegetarians are really Jains and that all vegetarians are "holier-than-thou" and are not real Buddhists and need to be forced to eat meat.


I dont think anyone suggested that those who choose not to eat meat should be force fed meat.

Sakya Pandita pointed out that meat eating was acceptable in the Śravaka schools, forbidden in general Mahāyāna and permitted in Highest Yoga Tantra.

And in Dzogchen, there are no rules at all, other than knowing your own situation and working with circumstances.

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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Nemo » Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:15 pm

Being vegetarian is noble. The statements about it's health benefits are rather dubious, but it is a compassionate choice. I don't think that is in question by anyone. Being a self important douche who thinks they are better than everyone else is not so great though from a Buddhist point of view. The Buddha never did that. Not with murderers, or butchers or people who were simply of low understanding. I despise most special clubs of people who think they are better than everyone else. Most especially when it is proselytized. Perhaps it is rather reactionary in nature and that explains the zeal, but it still looks like fundamentalist ramblings in many cases. Especially with the pseudo science and refusal to accept facts.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Sat Dec 31, 2011 7:43 pm

Nemo wrote:The statements about it's health benefits are rather dubious, but it is a compassionate choice.


For people who have severe cardiovascular disease, there is little choice -- they should immediately switch.
For people who are prone to various kinds of cancer, they should switch.

The China Study is an excellent book that demonstrates quite well that people who eat large quantities of meat and dairy are have an elevated risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer.

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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Blue Garuda » Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:29 pm

Nemo wrote:Being vegetarian is noble. The statements about it's health benefits are rather dubious, but it is a compassionate choice. I don't think that is in question by anyone. Being a self important douche who thinks they are better than everyone else is not so great though from a Buddhist point of view. The Buddha never did that. Not with murderers, or butchers or people who were simply of low understanding. I despise most special clubs of people who think they are better than everyone else. Most especially when it is proselytized. Perhaps it is rather reactionary in nature and that explains the zeal, but it still looks like fundamentalist ramblings in many cases. Especially with the pseudo science and refusal to accept facts.


Self-important douche? Fundamentalist ramblings? Pseudo-science?

What is amusing is that all these qualities amy also apply to meat eaters.

Whatever your point, you just failed miserably to present it by being insulting - I don't think Buddha acted like that either. ;)
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby catmoon » Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:58 pm

Maybe we can shift the grounds of these arguments, since I don't see any agreements coming anytime soon. While slogging through five pages of this stuff, I could not help but wonder, since when is it Buddhist practise to correct someone over and over again, when they have made it patently clear they are not interested in the advice offered? Now, I can see it being encouraged in evangelical Christianity, or in Maoist-era "education" sessions, but in Buddhism?

It is hard to see that any good is being done by pursuing the topic. Everyone is talking, no one is changing their point of view, and animosity is encouraged. If pursued to a logical end, the arguments will not lead to resolution, but to the creation of a vegan sect, a vegetarian sect, an ovolactarian sect and so on.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Blue Garuda » Sat Dec 31, 2011 10:02 pm

catmoon wrote:Maybe we can shift the grounds of these arguments, since I don't see any agreements coming anytime soon. While slogging through five pages of this stuff, I could not help but wonder, since when is it Buddhist practise to correct someone over and over again, when they have made it patently clear they are not interested in the advice offered? Now, I can see it being encouraged in evangelical Christianity, or in Maoist-era "education" sessions, but in Buddhism?

It is hard to see that any good is being done by pursuing the topic. Everyone is talking, no one is changing their point of view, and animosity is encouraged. If pursued to a logical end, the arguments will not lead to resolution, but to the creation of a vegan sect, a vegetarian sect, an ovolactarian sect and so on.


Strangely enough, if we revisit the OP, there is a 'middle way' suggested and a question about what others do, not a request for a debate to the death.

As I wrote earlier, people can change their minds - it's a part of the Buddhist path. ;)
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Sat Dec 31, 2011 10:24 pm

catmoon wrote:Maybe we can shift the grounds of these arguments, since I don't see any agreements coming anytime soon. While slogging through five pages of this stuff, I could not help but wonder, since when is it Buddhist practise to correct someone over and over again, when they have made it patently clear they are not interested in the advice offered? Now, I can see it being encouraged in evangelical Christianity, or in Maoist-era "education" sessions, but in Buddhism?

It is hard to see that any good is being done by pursuing the topic. Everyone is talking, no one is changing their point of view, and animosity is encouraged. If pursued to a logical end, the arguments will not lead to resolution, but to the creation of a vegan sect, a vegetarian sect, an ovolactarian sect and so on.


This already exists.

My personal opinion is that the Vegetarianism in Mahāyāna sutras and lower tantra is largely a product of a cultural response and an appeal to dietary trends in Indian culture, and need not be taken as "gospel". They are not definitive teachings.

Thervadins, Japanese Buddhists and Tibetan Buddhists by a large eat meat.

Chinese Buddhists do not.

Many Tibetan Buddhists feel bad about it, because they also follow Mahāyāna; but because Anuttarayoga tantra is more important, they eat meat.

Chinese Buddhists are very shrill and agressive about not eating meat and many Tibetan Lamas with lots of Chinese students have succumbed to pressure not to eat meat (which is undoubtedly better for their health).

In the US, there is trend for yoga practicing Buddhists to eschew eating meat. Also amongst some younger Tibetan Buddhists there is a trend to stop eating meat -- which is ironic, because virtually all instructions of yantra and tummo recommend that one eat some meat, especially lamb and yak, which are quite warming.

There are lamas like the Karmapa and Chatral Rinpoche, that advise everyone to stop eating meat. Then there are Lamas like Chogyal Namkhai Norbu, who advise everyone to eat meat.

I also have gone through periods of revulsion towards meat. But in the end, my conclusion is that diet is mainly important for maintaining one's health. Therefore, one should eat whatever is best for one's health, and that is a state that changes with age, with the seasons, and with illness.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby David N. Snyder » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:32 pm

Rarely, but it does happen once in a while, some have changed their views and even diet after reading and participating in debates such as this one. And it has gone both ways, with some changing views or diets from omnivore to veggie and vice versa.

But typically most participants (not all) in these debates are zealots who don't change their minds, but offer the views from their respective backgrounds. In most cases I don't think they are expecting to change the minds of the zealots on the other side, but rather just to present their views for the benefit of the readers. There may be some people who are teetering on the line one way or the other and read the posts for an education and clarification. The posts continue and the same arguments get presented for the benefit of those readers and any new readers who are coming to the conversation late.

And it is not necessarily a bad thing. The vegetarians provide information for the benefit of any new people interested in Buddhism who happen to have an affinity toward vegetarian diets and want to feel that this diet is compatible with the Buddha-Dharma. And the omnivores provide information for the benefit of any new people who don't want to be obliged to eat only vegetarian foods, but still want to be Buddhist and want reassurance that their diet is still compatible with the Buddha-Dharma.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby LastLegend » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:51 pm

If people are going to eat meats, try hagal meats by the Muslim farmers as these farmers have a special way of killing the animals. They pray for the animals for they kill them. At least that is a more compassionate way of killing.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jan 01, 2012 12:40 am

LastLegend wrote:If people are going to eat meats, try hagal meats by the Muslim farmers as these farmers have a special way of killing the animals. They pray for the animals for they kill them. At least that is a more compassionate way of killing.



Killing is killing, there is nothing compassionate about taking a life.

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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Blue Garuda » Sun Jan 01, 2012 12:53 am

LastLegend wrote:If people are going to eat meats, try hagal meats by the Muslim farmers as these farmers have a special way of killing the animals. They pray for the animals for they kill them. At least that is a more compassionate way of killing.


It's 'halal' and a crude method of slaughter. They pray to their God so unless you believe that an animal has a soul and will be treated well by a God which likes this fashion of killing, it is very far from compassionate. It is regarded by many as cruel:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/2977086.stm
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby catmoon » Sun Jan 01, 2012 12:55 am

All killing is not the same. There is killing in self defense, killing for survival, killing for vengeance, killing just for the sheer hell of it, killing with intent and without, with regret after and with rejoicing after. From a karmic POV they are quite different beasts.

Now in the case of the imam performing a slaughter with prayers, the consequences maybe be little different as far as the victim is concerned, but the consequences to the imam do differ due to his prayers. Those prayers could contain just the sort of regrets and good wishes towards the dinner-to-be that can greatly reduce the consequences.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jan 01, 2012 12:57 am

catmoon wrote:All killing is not the same. There is killing in self defense, killing for survival, killing for vengeance, killing just for the sheer hell of it, killing with intent and without, with regret after and with rejoicing after. From a karmic POV they are quite different beasts.


But all lack compassion.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Virgo » Sun Jan 01, 2012 1:08 am

Namdrol wrote: because virtually all instructions of yantra and tummo recommend that one eat some meat, especially lamb and yak, which are quite warming.

What is the need for warming food products under these circumstances Loppon?

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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jan 01, 2012 1:22 am

Virgo wrote:
Namdrol wrote: because virtually all instructions of yantra and tummo recommend that one eat some meat, especially lamb and yak, which are quite warming.

What is the need for warming food products under these circumstances Loppon?

Kevin



well, yantra can be quite demanding physically, as can tummo, so you need rich nutritious heavy warming food to prevent vata disorders and so on.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Virgo » Sun Jan 01, 2012 1:29 am

Namdrol wrote:
Virgo wrote:
Namdrol wrote: because virtually all instructions of yantra and tummo recommend that one eat some meat, especially lamb and yak, which are quite warming.

What is the need for warming food products under these circumstances Loppon?

Kevin



well, yantra can be quite demanding physically, as can tummo, so you need rich nutritious heavy warming food to prevent vata disorders and so on.

I see. Thanks Namdrol.

Any connection in TM texts between food and planets? For example, in the Vedas, milk is considered a product related to the moon. Those with malefic moons in their charts shouldn't take it very often and especially not on Mondays, or should donate it on Mondays, etc.?

Thanks,

Kevin
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Jan 01, 2012 2:02 am

Namdrol wrote:
catmoon wrote:All killing is not the same. There is killing in self defense, killing for survival, killing for vengeance, killing just for the sheer hell of it, killing with intent and without, with regret after and with rejoicing after. From a karmic POV they are quite different beasts.


But all lack compassion.


There is a story about the Buddha in a former life who is on a boat with many people, and he knows that one of the people is going to kill the others, so he kills that person out of compassion (before he kills anybody else) because he is aware of the suffering that person would otherwise reap from killing all the people on the boat.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Sun Jan 01, 2012 2:05 am

PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Namdrol wrote:
catmoon wrote:All killing is not the same. There is killing in self defense, killing for survival, killing for vengeance, killing just for the sheer hell of it, killing with intent and without, with regret after and with rejoicing after. From a karmic POV they are quite different beasts.


But all lack compassion.


There is a story about the Buddha in a former life who is on a boat with many people, and he knows that one of the people is going to kill the others, so he kills that person out of compassion (before he kills anybody else) because he is aware of the suffering that person would otherwise reap from killing all the people on the boat.



That is not killing, that is liberation.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby PadmaVonSamba » Sun Jan 01, 2012 2:25 am

Namdrol wrote:
PadmaVonSamba wrote:There is a story about the Buddha in a former life who is on a boat with many people, and he knows that one of the people is going to kill the others, so he kills that person out of compassion (before he kills anybody else) because he is aware of the suffering that person would otherwise reap from killing all the people on the boat.



That is not killing, that is liberation.

Thank you, Chairman Mao!! :rolling:
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