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 Malcolm » Fri Oct 25, 2013 2:30 pm

gad rgyangs wrote:yes, after you kill them (or, by paying money into the supply chain, having someone else kill them for you)


You can't really kill a sentient being. All you can do is sever the connection between its mind and body.

But when you buy meat in a market, you are not engaging in that karma. There is no intention to kill, as you very well know.
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འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby KonchokZoepa » Fri Oct 25, 2013 2:36 pm

porpoise wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:the whole vajrayana excuse thing is tantamount to "kill 'em all and let god sort 'em out"


where do you get this ridiculous thought. its only in your head, i dont think that that thought exists in any vajrayana practitioners mind.
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby porpoise » Fri Oct 25, 2013 2:59 pm

Malcolm wrote:But when you buy meat in a market, you are not engaging in that karma. There is no intention to kill, as you very well know.


The intention is to eat meat. The consequences are that you expect somebody else to kill on your behalf, and you expect somebody else to do a job that a Buddhist wouldn't do.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby porpoise » Fri Oct 25, 2013 3:00 pm

KonchokZoepa wrote:
porpoise wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:the whole vajrayana excuse thing is tantamount to "kill 'em all and let god sort 'em out"


where do you get this ridiculous thought. its only in your head, i dont think that that thought exists in any vajrayana practitioners mind.


I knew people who I'm sure just wanted to eat meat and were glad of a way to justify it.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Fri Oct 25, 2013 3:14 pm

porpoise wrote:
Malcolm wrote:But when you buy meat in a market, you are not engaging in that karma. There is no intention to kill, as you very well know.


The intention is to eat meat. The consequences are that you expect somebody else to kill on your behalf, and you expect somebody else to do a job that a Buddhist wouldn't do.



Absolutely wrong. For example, I know of no Buddhist who eats meat who would eat a lobster in a lobster house because they are killed on the spot for the client.

Granted, because of our economy, meat is cheaper and more available than it was a hundred years ago, when people tended to eat meat seasonally. Chicken and pork were more expensive because they depend on grain for feed (cows should not be fed corn for any reason because they cannot digest it properly).

But this has nothing to do with the basic point that in Vajrayāna there is very clearly a tradition, like it or not, of consuming meat, mostly bovine, and combining that with a method to assist the sentient being that was connected with that flesh at one point.

I am not stating you or anyone else has to follow that tradition. But it exists.
Last edited by Malcolm on Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby KonchokZoepa » Fri Oct 25, 2013 3:18 pm

Malcolm wrote:
porpoise wrote:
Malcolm wrote:But when you buy meat in a market, you are not engaging in that karma. There is no intention to kill, as you very well know.


The intention is to eat meat. The consequences are that you expect somebody else to kill on your behalf, and you expect somebody else to do a job that a Buddhist wouldn't do.


i doubt that people expect to someone kill it, they expect the meat to be on the shop because its where it is, anyway, wether you eat it or not so i dont think there are expectations pointed at people other than from companies who pay the butchers to kill the animals. the consumers dont worry or think about that, they dont expect anyone to kill the meat for them because somebody does that expecting for them. the companies, the industries etc who does that job alltogether.
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:00 pm

Ok, i'm just gonna keep bringing this up until one or more of the vegetarian polemicists gives me a satisfactory answer, especially with people throwing around nonsense like that cannibalism argument:

If you believe that we are this culpable for indirect actions (i.e. equating a purchase from a supermarket to participating in the killing itself), I would like to again point out that your very vegetarianism (or at least the availability of foods that makes it possible for you to be a vegetarian and remain healthy in this particular society) is possible in part to 100's of years of imperialism, which has indirectly included untold slaughter of other humans and many other beings, as well as the obvious enormous transfer and accumulation of resources that makes your lifestyle possible.

Personally, I don't think your vegetarianism can be reasonably connected to those things in a way that makes you morally culpable for the causes and conditions that made your vegetarianism possible, and for that reason I consider your vegetarianism itself a good thing. However, this is exactly the sort of logic you are using to condemn meat eaters as doing something fundamentally immoral. If that is how it works, then we are all culpable of so much more, including you, and none of you have any place condemning meat eaters if this is the case, unless you live completely off the grid, buy your own clothes, don't pay taxes, don't participate in the economy, etc., otherwise you are talking like total hypocrites.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby KonchokZoepa » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:08 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:Ok, i'm just gonna keep bringing this up until one or more of the vegetarian polemicists gives me a satisfactory answer, especially with people throwing around nonsense like that cannibalism argument:

If you believe that we are this culpable for indirect actions (i.e. equating a purchase from a supermarket to participating in the killing itself), I would like to again point out that your very vegetarianism (or at least the availability of foods that makes it possible for you to be a vegetarian and remain healthy in this particular society) is possible in part to 100's of years of imperialism, which has indirectly included untold slaughter of other humans and many other beings, as well as the obvious enormous transfer and accumulation of resources that makes your lifestyle possible.

Personally, I don't think your vegetarianism can be reasonably connected to those things in a way that makes you morally culpable for the causes and conditions that made your vegetarianism possible, and for that reason I consider your vegetarianism itself a good thing. However, this is exactly the sort of logic you are using to condemn meat eaters as doing something fundamentally immoral. If that is how it works, then we are all culpable of so much more, including you, and none of you have any place condemning meat eaters if this is the case, unless you live completely off the grid, buy your own clothes, don't pay taxes, don't participate in the economy, etc., otherwise you are talking like total hypocrites.


:applause: :good:
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby dzogchungpa » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:12 pm

gad rgyangs wrote:...cannibals...

So you, gad rgyangs, see no difference between humans and animals?
ཨོཾ་མ་ཧཱ་ཤུནྱ་ཏཱ་ཛྙཱ་ན་བཛྲ་སྭཱ་བྷཱ་བ་ཨཱཏྨ་ཀོ་྅ཧཾ༔

The thousands of lines of the Prajnaparamita can be summed up in the following two sentences:
1) One should become a Bodhisattva (or, Buddha-to-be), i.e. one who is content with nothing less than all-knowledge attained through the perfection of wisdom for the sake of all beings.
2) There is no such thing as a Bodhisattva, or as all-knowledge, or as a ‘being’, or as the perfection of wisdom, or as an attainment.
To accept both these contradictory facts is to be perfect.
- Conze
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby gad rgyangs » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:41 pm

dzogchungpa wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:...cannibals...

So you, gad rgyangs, see no difference between humans and animals?


in terms of suffering, no
Thoroughly tame your own mind.
This is (possibly) the teaching of Buddha.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Jainarayan » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:47 pm

I haven't participated in this thread in a long time mostly because I really don't have anything to contribute. However, I would like some advice, even if it's conflicting (now that's something you don't hear every day :tongue: )...

I've tried vegetarianism several times, mostly lacto-ovo or lacto-ovo-pesco. In most of those times I found my diet to be too carb heavy with a preponderance of rice, pasta, legumes. I'm not worried about protein because there are whey shakes and dairy. I have to go easy with the soy because I am hypothyroid and on meds. Soy interferes with thyroid hormones, and since I can't naturally adjust my hormone production, I can wind up more hypo. The problem with a carb heavy diet is that I am insulin resistant, non-celiac gluten intolerant, and I put on weight very easily. I would very much like to go full-on lacto- or even lacto-ovo, for the usual ethical and compassion reasons, but I don't know how to reduce the proportion of carbs. Suggestions would be appreciated.
Worthy, wise and virtuous: Who is energetic and not indolent, in misfortune unshaken,
flawless in manner and intelligent, such one will honor gain. - Digha Nikaya III 273
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby dzogchungpa » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:52 pm

gad rgyangs wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:...cannibals...

So you, gad rgyangs, see no difference between humans and animals?


in terms of suffering, no

So, the suffering of an animal is as important to you as that of a human?
ཨོཾ་མ་ཧཱ་ཤུནྱ་ཏཱ་ཛྙཱ་ན་བཛྲ་སྭཱ་བྷཱ་བ་ཨཱཏྨ་ཀོ་྅ཧཾ༔

The thousands of lines of the Prajnaparamita can be summed up in the following two sentences:
1) One should become a Bodhisattva (or, Buddha-to-be), i.e. one who is content with nothing less than all-knowledge attained through the perfection of wisdom for the sake of all beings.
2) There is no such thing as a Bodhisattva, or as all-knowledge, or as a ‘being’, or as the perfection of wisdom, or as an attainment.
To accept both these contradictory facts is to be perfect.
- Conze
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:53 pm

gad rgyangs wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:
gad rgyangs wrote:...cannibals...

So you, gad rgyangs, see no difference between humans and animals?


in terms of suffering, no



There is a huge difference -- animals suffer much more.
http://www.bhaisajya.net
http://atikosha.org
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔

" The one who teaches the benefits of peace,
he is said to be a ṛṣī; the others are the opposite of him."

-- Uttaratantra
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby KonchokZoepa » Fri Oct 25, 2013 5:04 pm

as some info to all the vegetarians. soy is very harmful to this planet. first they cut down the rainforest, then plant soy, the soil maybe lasts for two years, so two harvests or four and then the soil and the ground is completely useless, you cant grow anything since soy made the soil and ground useless. it was marketed as a way to feed to world but the reality is its very harmful. so its of great damage to this planet.
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby yan kong » Fri Oct 25, 2013 5:21 pm

KonchokZoepa wrote:as some info to all the vegetarians. soy is very harmful to this planet. first they cut down the rainforest, then plant soy, the soil maybe lasts for two years, so two harvests or four and then the soil and the ground is completely useless, you cant grow anything since soy made the soil and ground useless. it was marketed as a way to feed to world but the reality is its very harmful. so its of great damage to this planet.


And then they use much of that soy you mentioned for animal feed, animals who are later slaughtered to feed people.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby KonchokZoepa » Fri Oct 25, 2013 5:24 pm

yan kong wrote:
KonchokZoepa wrote:as some info to all the vegetarians. soy is very harmful to this planet. first they cut down the rainforest, then plant soy, the soil maybe lasts for two years, so two harvests or four and then the soil and the ground is completely useless, you cant grow anything since soy made the soil and ground useless. it was marketed as a way to feed to world but the reality is its very harmful. so its of great damage to this planet.


And then they use much of that soy you mentioned for animal feed, animals who are later slaughtered to feed people.


and here we come to the point that it is out of our control, wether or not we as individual buyers support such industry the wheels keep spinning anyway.
If the thought of demons
Never rises in your mind,
You need not fear the demon hosts around you.
It is most important to tame your mind within....

In so far as the Ultimate, or the true nature of being is concerned,
there are neither buddhas or demons.
He who frees himself from fear and hope, evil and virtue,
will realize the insubstantial and groundless nature of confusion.
Samsara will then appear as the mahamudra itself….

-Milarepa

OMMANIPADMEHUNG

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ls6P9tOYmdo
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby ClearblueSky » Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:29 pm

KonchokZoepa wrote:
yan kong wrote:
KonchokZoepa wrote:as some info to all the vegetarians. soy is very harmful to this planet. first they cut down the rainforest, then plant soy, the soil maybe lasts for two years, so two harvests or four and then the soil and the ground is completely useless, you cant grow anything since soy made the soil and ground useless. it was marketed as a way to feed to world but the reality is its very harmful. so its of great damage to this planet.


And then they use much of that soy you mentioned for animal feed, animals who are later slaughtered to feed people.


and here we come to the point that it is out of our control, wether or not we as individual buyers support such industry the wheels keep spinning anyway.


Factory farming is still much, much crueler to animals. By a lot. And if you want to bring up the environment, there is no comparison. Factory farming of cows is the number one cause of global warming. 15% of global warming is due to it, that's more than all the cars on earth.

And I still don't get that logic. Just because it's happening anyway, doesn't mean we have to participate. Sorry to keep referencing my previous post, but I only see how that works if people apply the same to other industries:
There was a point in time where slavery was thought to be inevitable and worldwide. Do you think the people had no karmic consequences if they bought slaves that were already captured, not by their request?
What about with the recent revealing of Seaworld's cruelty. If someone knows what they do to those whales, but still pays seaworld money to go watch them, is that okay because they have the assumption it won't ever change?

If someone explains that those are the same as eating meat, then I would understand. It's really only the separation, people saying one is okay karmically and not the other that I still don't really understand.
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby dzogchungpa » Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:50 pm

ClearblueSky wrote:There was a point in time where slavery was thought to be inevitable and worldwide...

Do you feel that eating meat is somehow comparable to owning slaves ?
Last edited by dzogchungpa on Fri Oct 25, 2013 7:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
ཨོཾ་མ་ཧཱ་ཤུནྱ་ཏཱ་ཛྙཱ་ན་བཛྲ་སྭཱ་བྷཱ་བ་ཨཱཏྨ་ཀོ་྅ཧཾ༔

The thousands of lines of the Prajnaparamita can be summed up in the following two sentences:
1) One should become a Bodhisattva (or, Buddha-to-be), i.e. one who is content with nothing less than all-knowledge attained through the perfection of wisdom for the sake of all beings.
2) There is no such thing as a Bodhisattva, or as all-knowledge, or as a ‘being’, or as the perfection of wisdom, or as an attainment.
To accept both these contradictory facts is to be perfect.
- Conze
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Johnny Dangerous » Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:52 pm

ClearblueSky wrote:Factory farming is still much, much crueler to animals. By a lot. And if you want to bring up the environment, there is no comparison. Factory farming of cows is the number one cause of global warming. 15% of global warming is due to it, that's more than all the cars on earth.

And I still don't get that logic. Just because it's happening anyway, doesn't mean we have to participate. Sorry to keep referencing my previous post, but I only see how that works if people apply the same to other industries:
There was a point in time where slavery was thought to be inevitable and worldwide. Do you think the people had no karmic consequences if they bought slaves that were already captured, not by their request?
What about with the recent revealing of Seaworld's cruelty. If someone knows what they do to those whales, but still pays seaworld money to go watch them, is that okay because they have the assumption it won't ever change?

If someone explains that those are the same as eating meat, then I would understand. It's really only the separation, people saying one is okay karmically and not the other that I still don't really understand.



I'll tell ya what, once you start buying all your clothes for non-sweatshop sources, stop paying taxes that support huge atrocities, stop participating in the economy at all (since by definition some part of your participation goes to said atrocities), and grow every bit of your own food i'll buy the argument that your non-participation in meat eating is somehow equivalent to fighting slavery (LOL btw), because then it will be consistent with the rest of your lifestyle.

As far as slavery, people sacrificed themselves to end that, and no i'm by no means just talking about civil war soldiers, and not just talking physically, people gave up whole lifetimes of comfort, social acceptance, and safety to fight slavery. It doesn't take anywhere near that kind of sacrifice to be a vegetarian or vegan in our insanely abundant society, where you can do any diet you want at pretty much any time. Don't play the social justice card as a vegetarian unless you are out actually doing something to change the world, your consumer choices mean jack and squat as far as that stuff goes, minor lifestyle changes aren't social action. That's why they call you a consumer, it's not a powerful position.

\There has to be a limit to what you think people's culpability is for indirect things or else your argument is utterly, purely, 100% absurd because living in samsara means some amount of indirect participation in terrible things, that is part of samsara, you are picking and choosing what not to participate on based on ease, and acting like this one lifestyle decision carries a much bigger impact than it actually does.

* Mind, I fully respect the choice, and I consider it a meritorious thing to give up meat for your practice, I am sure there that on some level it means better Karma..then again what we are talking about here ventures into the realm of something like collective Karma when we discuss indirect, non-intentional connection to killing, and if you are so worried about that IMO there are way bigger fish to fry than meat eating..so to speak!
Last edited by Johnny Dangerous on Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:58 pm, edited 2 times in total.
"Just as a lotus does not grow out of a well-levelled soil but from the mire, in the same way the awakening mind
is not born in the hearts of disciples in whom the moisture of attachment has dried up. It grows instead in the hearts of ordinary sentient beings who possess in full the fetters of bondage." -Se Chilbu Choki Gyaltsen
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Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Simon E. » Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:57 pm

' In a universe where everything eats everything else eventually, avoiding meat is splitting hairs. The best thing to do is eat with gratitude, because something, whether animal or vegetable, has died for you.'

Gary Snyder. Buddhist. Ecological pioneer, poet, and wilderness advocate.
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