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 Sherab Dorje » Sat Nov 02, 2013 9:26 am

dzogchungpa wrote:You two should get a room. :smile:
What's up with you dude? You own a hotel with a serious vacancy issue or something? :tongue:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
User avatar
Sherab Dorje
Former staff member
 
Posts: 7878
Joined: Fri May 14, 2010 9:27 pm
Location: Greece

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby porpoise » Sat Nov 02, 2013 10:36 am

Nemo wrote:The posts removed were mostly rabid vegetarians looking neurotic and desperate. They are actually one of the best arguments not to become a vegetarian. Removing them is unfair IMO.


:rolleye:
porpoise
 
Posts: 189
Joined: Sun Jun 20, 2010 3:27 pm

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Nemo » Sat Nov 02, 2013 10:39 am

Blech! I dated a Brit who lived off that stuff. A shot is an infinitely more humane way to top up your B12.
User avatar
Nemo
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 3:23 am
Location: Canada

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Simon E. » Sat Nov 02, 2013 10:46 am

:tongue: I think you have to be brought up on it...
A few years ago some friends had a Norwegian guy staying with them for a few weeks.
He tried Marmite and said it was the most disgusting thing he had ever tasted..he added 'and I have tried fermented shark..'
So the following Christmas they sent him the smallest sized jar available, for a joke.
He replied, ' thank you for the ten year supply of Marmite ! '

Actually not all Brits like it..in fact 'its/he's/she's Marmite' has come to mean something or someone that divides opinion..
Those of us who do like it..love it.
Simon E.
 
Posts: 2119
Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby dzogchungpa » Sat Nov 02, 2013 5:28 pm

Sherab Dorje wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:You two should get a room. :smile:
What's up with you dude? You own a hotel with a serious vacancy issue or something? :tongue:

Are you saying we need to get a room too? :smile:
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
User avatar
dzogchungpa
 
Posts: 1436
Joined: Sat May 28, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby dzogchungpa » Sat Nov 02, 2013 5:43 pm

David N. Snyder wrote:The Lankavatara Sutra is very specific and blatantly anti-meat...

Meat is not agreeable to the wise: it has a nauseating odour,

I don't think meat has a nauseating odour.

it causes a bad reputation,

Not where I live.

it is food for the carnivorous;

Duh.

Hmm, I wonder if this sutra is all it's cracked up to be?

:smile:
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
User avatar
dzogchungpa
 
Posts: 1436
Joined: Sat May 28, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:32 am

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.


Yes. :smile: 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.

:namaste:
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!
User avatar
seeker242
 
Posts: 644
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:41 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:Doesn't Brahma net forbid Onions, garlic etc. as well, or am I thinking of something else?


Yes, that's it. They are garlic, chives, leeks, onions, and asafoetida. Whatever the heck "asafoetida" is I have no idea! The Surangama Sutra
also mentions "forbidden pungent roots". The nirvana sutra mentions it too. If eaten raw, they are said to cause irritability of temper, and if eaten cooked, to act as an aphrodisiac. So it is recommended that these are avoided as well. But eating them does not "forfeit the seed of great compassion" or "sever the seed of Buddha nature" or "cause one to be guilty of countless offenses".

I wonder if the same vegetarians who hold Brahma Net vows definitive also do this, and if not, why exclude this set of rules, while adhering to no meat ones? Might be a very practical answer, but i'm curious to hear it.


Some do, some don't. I would assume all monks do follow it, whose precepts are based on this sutra. One reason why a person would follow the meat prohibition and not the onion prohibition is that the meat prohibition concerns compassion for other beings or it is "for the benefit of others" and the onion prohibition is "for the benefit of myself". So onion prohibition would be for the purpose of calming temperament and reducing lust. Although, one
could argue that reducing your own temper and lust could easily be done for the benefit of other also. But still not the same or as serious as
"forfeiting the seed of great compassion" or "severing the seed of Buddha nature".

:namaste:
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!
User avatar
seeker242
 
Posts: 644
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Nemo » Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:45 am

The only problem is that most scholars date the Bhrama Net to the 5th century AD. So it is likely apocryphal and of little importance to practitioners of Vajrayana. Theravada and Vajrayana references are what applies in this forum. The Buddha ate meat and so did his monks.
User avatar
Nemo
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 3:23 am
Location: Canada

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:55 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Sherab Dorje wrote:
Johnny Dangerous wrote:Not accusing you of it, but honestly look at the way some vegetarians and vegans use it ...
The key term here is "some". Let's keep it in mind.

Some is correct, yes of course. Though honestly i'd say that kind of adversarial attitude is part and parcel of pretty much the whole vegan subculture.

It is because many vegans are also "animal rights activists". But if you think about it, any kind of social activism that is looking for radical social changes always entails some type of adversarial situation. The civil rights movement in the US is a good example. People were actually shot and killed! Rosa Parks took a very adversarial attitude. She had to, she had no other choice. Martin Luther King, talk about controversial, holy moly! :jumping:
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!
User avatar
seeker242
 
Posts: 644
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:59 am

Nemo wrote:The only problem is that most scholars date the Bhrama Net to the 5th century AD. So it is likely apocryphal and of little importance to practitioners of Vajrayana. Theravada and Vajrayana references are what applies in this forum. The Buddha ate meat and so did his monks.


East Asian Buddhism applies here too does it not? Not just Theravada and Vajrayana. I mean there is a whole section just for East Asian Buddhism just like there is a whole section just for Tibetan Buddhism. You are saying this forum excludes some Mahayana traditions and excludes others? I don't think that is intended to be the case. It is my impression that this forum is for all Mahayana practitioners, regardless of what particular tradition.
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!
User avatar
seeker242
 
Posts: 644
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Adi » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:08 am

seeker242 wrote:... It is my impression that this forum is for all Mahayana practitioners, regardless of what particular tradition.


My impression, too, and also Nemo's it seems. Though I am sure he'll explain if otherwise.

In this great Mahayana dining hall, there will always be two buffet lines, one serving meat and the other vegetarian. :smile:

Adi
Adi
 
Posts: 164
Joined: Sun Nov 08, 2009 10:45 pm

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:14 am

Adi wrote:
seeker242 wrote:... It is my impression that this forum is for all Mahayana practitioners, regardless of what particular tradition.


My impression, too, and also Nemo's it seems. Though I am sure he'll explain if otherwise.

In this great Mahayana dining hall, there will always be two buffet lines, one serving meat and the other vegetarian. :smile:

Adi


I personally would not place a bet on that myself. :jumping: Mostly because of stuff like this.

"Food shortages could force world into vegetarianism, warn scientists" Water scarcity's effect on food production means radical steps will be needed to feed population expected to reach 9bn by 2050. http://www.theguardian.com/global-devel ... etarianism
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!
User avatar
seeker242
 
Posts: 644
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Adi » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:18 am

seeker242 wrote:
Adi wrote:
seeker242 wrote:... It is my impression that this forum is for all Mahayana practitioners, regardless of what particular tradition.


My impression, too, and also Nemo's it seems. Though I am sure he'll explain if otherwise.

In this great Mahayana dining hall, there will always be two buffet lines, one serving meat and the other vegetarian. :smile:

Adi


I personally would not place a bet on that myself. :jumping: Mostly because of stuff like this.

"Food shortages could force world into vegetarianism, warn scientists" Water scarcity's effect on food production means radical steps will be needed to feed population expected to reach 9bn by 2050. http://www.theguardian.com/global-devel ... etarianism


There is an old saying that today's art is tomorrow's science.

So, in this situation, Soylent Green came out in 1973, so by 2050….

Adi
Adi
 
Posts: 164
Joined: Sun Nov 08, 2009 10:45 pm

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby seeker242 » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:23 am

Adi wrote:
There is an old saying that today's art is tomorrow's science.

So, in this situation, Soylent Green came out in 1973, so by 2050….

Adi


"A Modest Proposal": for Preventing the Children of Poor People From Being a Burthen to Their Parents or Country, and for Making Them Beneficial to the Publick. ~Jonathan Swift 1729

Always enjoyed that one. :rolling:
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!
User avatar
seeker242
 
Posts: 644
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2012 2:50 pm
Location: South Florida, USA

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Nemo » Sun Nov 03, 2013 2:55 am

My mistake. I thought this was a Vajrayana forum.
User avatar
Nemo
 
Posts: 583
Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 3:23 am
Location: Canada

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Indrajala » Sun Nov 03, 2013 11:57 am

Nemo wrote:The only problem is that most scholars date the Bhrama Net to the 5th century AD. So it is likely apocryphal and of little importance to practitioners of Vajrayana. Theravada and Vajrayana references are what applies in this forum. The Buddha ate meat and so did his monks.


For the record it seems the esoteric Mantrayāna/Vajrayāna tradition of China and thereafter Japan (Shingon) accepted the Brahma Net Sūtra as canonical and in fact practiced its prescribed bodhisattvas with due diligence. Kūkai for instance in his works includes past eating of meat, along with other transgressions, in a list of things to be confessed. He was vegetarian as far as I know like most monks of his age.

Also, the origins of the Brahma Net Sūtra might actually have been Central Asian rather than Chinese or Indian. In any case, it was a visionary text that was arguably one of the most influential texts in East Asian Buddhist history. It is applicable in the context of Shingon and Tendai.
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
Former staff member
 
Posts: 5555
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: India

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby dzogchungpa » Sun Nov 03, 2013 4:30 pm

Ven. IJ, is it known if any significant portions of the populations of China, Korea etc. were ever vegetarian? Also, isn't there some story, possibly apocryphal, about Hui Neng living with hunters for like 15 years? That doesn't seem like a particularly strong endorsement of vegetarianism.
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
User avatar
dzogchungpa
 
Posts: 1436
Joined: Sat May 28, 2011 10:50 pm

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Malcolm » Sun Nov 03, 2013 4:42 pm

seeker242 wrote:


Yes, that's it. They are garlic, chives, leeks, onions, and asafoetida. Whatever the heck "asafoetida" is I have no idea! [/quote]


Asafoetida is a spice also called Hing, used in Indian cooking and in Ayruveda and Tibetan medicine for controlling wind diseases. It is generally used by Brahmins as a substitute for Garlic. It is very pungent smelling.
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
Malcolm
 
Posts: 10154
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 2:19 am

Re: the great vegetarian debate

Postby Indrajala » Sun Nov 03, 2013 5:08 pm

dzogchungpa wrote:Ven. IJ, is it known if any significant portions of the populations of China, Korea etc. were ever vegetarian? Also, isn't there some story, possibly apocryphal, about Hui Neng living with hunters for like 15 years? That doesn't seem like a particularly strong endorsement of vegetarianism.


No, I have no reason to believe any culture in East Asia was ever predominately vegetarian. I know the Japanese Buddhists up until the Meiji period were often vegetarian given the nature of their bodhisattva precepts, and for monks it was a criminal act to consume meat (I doubt if the law was regularly enforced), but this reflected a segment of the population.

Up until recently a lot of people in East Asia were more or less vegetarian for economic reasons. In Taiwan I heard stories about how in the old days you could enjoy pork once a month at best because it was just too expensive to eat regularly. It was the same in Japan. The large intake of fish in the Japanese diet is a modern development, or so I've read.

The Chinese sangha had a large segment which protested the enforcement of meat prohibitions under Emperor Liangwu (6th century). In later ages it seems the prohibition wasn't always taken so seriously. There are code words for meat and alcohol in Japanese Buddhism which come from Song Dynasty China for instance.

I wrote a few blog entries on this subject:

http://huayanzang.blogspot.com/2011/06/ ... art-i.html

http://huayanzang.blogspot.com/2012/06/ ... rt-ii.html
Flower Ornament Depository (Blog)
Indrajāla's Contemplations (Blog)
Exploring Classical Chinese (Blog)
Dharma Depository (Site)

"Hui gives me no assistance. There is nothing that I say in which he does not delight." -Confucius
User avatar
Indrajala
Former staff member
 
Posts: 5555
Joined: Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:19 pm
Location: India

PreviousNext

Return to Open Dharma

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: jeeprs and 12 guests

>