Jikan wrote: seeker242 wrote:
Jikan wrote:If the Surangama Sutra is your path, then a vegetarian diet is entirely warranted for you.
Not all Buddhist traditions accept the Surangama Sutra as canonical.
But it's more than just that one particular sutra. I just happened to mention that one as simon mentioned that one. Although, with regards to meat eating I personally consider the Surangama Sutra secondary so to speak. For me personally, the primary ones would be the Nirvana sutra, Brama Net sutra and lastly, because I prefer zen, the Lankavatara sutra.
OK. What, specifically, do you see in the Lankavatara sutra (or the others you cite... the Brahma Net Sutra seems an obvious choice but not many here will be familiar with it) that coincides explicitly with your position? Where do these sutras demand vegetarianism of practitioners?
For the Lankavatara sutra there is a chapter on meat eating. In DT Suzuki translation is "Chapter 8: On Meat Eating". The whole chapter prohibits the eating of meat and goes on to explain some of the reasons why. http://www.shabkar.org/download/pdf/Lan ... Suzuki.pdf
"And the Bodhisattva, the great being Mahamati, listened attentively to the Lord, who said: "Mahamati," he said, "a loving and compassionate Bodhisattva should not eat meat. There are countless reasons for this, only some of which I will explain to you"
For the "Brama net Sutra: Moral Code of the Bodhisattvas" it is the 3rd of the 48 secondary precepts. This is the sutra where the "10 grave precepts" or "Bodhisattva precepts" of zen come from and is followed by Chan, Thien, Soen and Zen monks and laypersons. Although, Japanese zen traditions would be a general exception to that regarding some of the secondary precepts. Japanese zen traditions are the only ones I know of that do not require the monks to be vegetarian but Japanese zen monks are quite different in a number of ways. Not celibate, allowed to marry, etc, etc. http://www.sinc.sunysb.edu/Clubs/buddhi ... sframe.htm
For the nirvana sutra, the prohibition against eating meat is stated a couple of times. http://www.shabkar.org/download/pdf/Mah ... _Sutra.pdf
In "Chapter Seven: On the Four Aspects". "
One who eats meat kills the seed of great compassion... O Kasyapa! I, from now on, tell my disciples to refrain from eating any kind of meat."
At the time of the alms-round, one may be given food containing meat. How can one take it and yet be pure?" The Buddha said: "Use water, wash away the meat, and then eat it [the rest of the food]. The utensil may be defiled by meat. But if no taste of meat remains, this may be used. There will be no harm done. If one sees that there is a lot of meat, one should not accept such a meal. One must never eat the meat itself.
"Chapter 19: On Holy Actions 1" also mentions it.
He receives [food] once a day, and never eats twice a day. His meal is what is gained from alms-begging or is that for the Sangha [food donated to the Sangha]. He always knows just how to slow down his steps, but never accepts a special invitation [for himself alone]. He does not eat meat or take intoxicating drinks"
"Chapter Forty-Six: On Kaundinya 2" also mentions it.
This dharani is what all Buddhas, as many in number as the sands of ten Ganges, propound. This will indeed change the female form and enable one to read one's own fortune. If any person receives [i.e. practises] well the five things, namely: 1) pure actions, and abstention from: 2) meat, 3) alcohol, 4) spices, and 5) happily abides in quietude, and after becoming perfect in these five things, believes in this dharani, recites it, and writes it, know that such a person can indeed discard the 77 billion ill-omened [i.e. inauspicious] bodies."
Now one could argue the semantics of the word "demand" or "prohibit" and say "well, it's just a recommendation not a demand". You could say that, but the same could be said about any precept, even the first 5 that are common to all Buddhist traditions. But, I've never been fond of arguing semantics.