Veganism isn’t a high moral standard.
Veganism is a bare minimum, to don’t support enslavement, torture and murder of billions of innocent sentient beings.
What happens to animals is greatest hell happining on Earth right now.
And every at least slightly compassionate and moral person should advocate veganism as bare minimum, in my humble opinion.
It is not like vegans don’t have other moral issues. It should not be compared. It is not a high moral standard to be proud of, it is bare minimum.
If someone is interested in subject of veganism, I highly recommend lectures of Gary Yourofsky. I went vegan the day I heard his lecture and never looked back. It is really not hard when you go from the place of compassion when shopping and preparing meals.
I think monks should encourage people giving them only vegan food, out of compassion for animals, because I believe compassion should be more importaint than any rules, but that is just my opinion. I don’t think of any beings on the Earth who needs more help than those poor “animal industry” animals
The times have changed completely between Buddha’s times and how “animal industry” looks today, so suttas are not great reference in this subject.
Also, like Ajahn Brahm with bhikkhuni ordination simply did what was “good thing to do”, I also think that veganism is “good thing to do”, no matter what people of the past, or some people of the present think of it. It just feels extremely wrong to support treating sentient beings like it is done in “animal industry”. Especially today, when we have so much food options that being on a healthy vegan diet is absolutely not a problem in most parts of the world.
Vegetarianism is not better than carnism. Milk industry is actually even more cruel than meat industry. Separating calfs from their cow mothers at birth (they are “produced” only so mother have more milk for humans) is crazy sick. Of course calf is later killed for food or made another factory of milk. The mother when her time for “giving milk” is over is of course killed for food. These animals often live in extremely cruel conditions, are treated with utter hatred and contempt, and most of them never see sunlight even once in their lives. Only veganism is full sulotion to the problem of this utter cruelty towards animals.
People who are not vegan choose either their palate pleasure or social convinience over reducing cruelty towards innocent sentient beings.
In this greedy world, where for “business people” only another “0” at the end of their money sum matters, only stopping putting money to their pocket can stop them from doing that.
Sorry for this “harsh” words. but it is just the truth. It is the world that is so harsh. Compassionate people should not agree to that. Animals can’t speak or fight for their freedom, only we humans can do this for them, and we should not indulge in conviniences but try to help at least not adding our brick to this wall of suffering.
I also love this vegan sentence: What is the best taste of food? Taste of pure conscience. Sounds very buddhist to me.
It is great to see monks like Ajahn Sujato or Thich Nhat Hanh, who openly speak about importance of veganism in buddhist culture.