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Daily Connection: Eating Animals - What Would Lisa Simpson Do?
Submitted by Ethan Nichtern on Wed, 10/13/2010, 4:38pm
I'm reading Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer. It's a pretty compelling and personal look from a highly successful young novelist at the ethical choices he makes with regards to non-human sentient beings. Lisa Simpson, by the way, is perhaps the most famous Buddhist vegetarian in the world (even more so than Thich Nhat Hanh, sorry Thay).
I used to be a vegetarian. As a friend put it when I told him I started eating fish again, "fish is a gateway meat." I thought that was hilarious. I am contemplating swinging the pendulum back toward the vegetable kingdom in my personal diet. Perhaps not all the way, but as much as it can go.
IDPer Sam Hillmer shared his recipe for working with the ethics of meat-eating. "I keep a vegetarian household, but occasionally eat fish when I'm out, and don't reject what I'm offered by others." I thought this was a good middle path, but it could be a slippery slope to ecological disaster and moral degradation. Who am I to say? Check out the below hardcore quote from a 19th century Tibetan master. Tibetan Buddhism is often considered the most meat-friendly of all traditional Buddhist schools of practice. Yet even the Dalai Lama and other bigwigs of Tibetan Buddhism, including His Holiness the Karmapa, are getting more adamant about this these days. Let me know what you think.
"When we have acquired an awareness of the fact that all beings have been our mothers, and when this awareness is constant, the result will be that when we see meat, we will be conscious of the fact that it is the flesh of our own mothers. And, far from putting it in our mouths and eating it, we will be unable to even take it into our hands or smell its odor."
- Shabkar Tsogdruk Rangdrol
Food of Bodhisattvas: Buddhist Teachings on Abstaining from Meat
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