The Dhamma , Veganism and Vegetarianism

yes, that’s interesting. Maybe it can be related with dfferences between metta and karuna, and near- far enemies in the 4 Brahma-viharas classification:

(factor - near e. - far e.)

  • metta - attachment - hatred
  • karuna - pity - cruelty
  • mudita - comparison - envy
  • upekkha - indifference - greed

There is an interesting study here:

Some conclussions from this study can be related with that disonance of a “lack of compassion” perceived by some vegan people in non-vegan Buddhist people:

“People may not be excusing themselves or reducing their dissonance, but truly acting in accordance with their beliefs, beliefs aligned with both caring for the effects of meat-eating and continuing to eat meat. If people believe that changing their behavior will not make much of a difference, because the solution is primarily technological or political, or a complex combination of all, then there is no paradox or dissonance to begin with. People justify coherently their choice (Discourses 1–3), or simply live with their contradictions, aware and easy with the fact that they are contradictions, unlike cases of dissonance (Discourse 4).”

I suppose in the Buddhist case one can add the complexity of Dhamma for every different person


So I’ll be waiting now for the updated classier WWBD Buddhist version of this: :smile:


would someone make one, already?!

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The good news is, we actually know what the Buddha would do. He gave us the Dhamma. Do good, try not to do harm. Eightfold Path. We are the owners and heirs of our actions and intentions. Meditate, cultivate insight, and decide for ourselves what is good and beneficial. Easy peasy. Unlike the Abrahamic religions, we get to figure this stuff out for ourselves, and then own it. :slight_smile:


3 posts were split to a new topic: Vegetarian and vegan friendly monasteries

This confuses me. How would one measure an immeasurable?

They meditate spreading a heart full of compassion …

Compassion is an immeasurable to be practiced as such. By measuring something we concern ourselves with limitations and forms. With each decision faced we choose compassion according to the information we have at hand.

If I am hungry I do not kill the cat. If it dies first I might eat it with gratitude. If I die first it’s welcome to my body. If the cat is very large, the cat would probably help me die sooner.

Are mettā, karuṇā, muditā and upekkhā intrinsically immeasurable? Or are they mental qualities that in their normal occurrence are “measurable” (i.e., subject to limits and bounds) but which may become immeasurable when successfully developed?


We can measure Instagram likes, but by doing so, we are not really measuring mettā, which is a quality to be lived. And I can guarantee that if we were to continuously ask our spiritual companions for hourly metrics on our progress towards the immeasurables, we would surely tempt them into resentment. “Venerable, what’s my metta score now?”

Measurement is something we apply to the limited, the impermanent. Even success and attainments are measurements.

For the following to be true we have to let go of success and failure, focusing on mettā, karuṇā, muditā and upekkhā as immeasurables:

To never be content with skillful qualities, and to never stop trying. --DN33

One cannot attain, measure or capture the immeasurables. But we can live and abide in them by simply choosing them to be immeasurable.


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Sorry for the misunderstanding. I’m just speaking from a conventional point of view. I thought it was clear from the context…

Can one not tell when one is acting compassionately or when one is not acting compassionately? Can one not tell if another is either acting compassionately or not acting compassionately? Should one not be mindful of the difference between compassionate acts and uncompassionate acts?

Personally I love to see more, many more, loads more compassionate acts in my world, and at the same time I love to see less, much less, many times less uncompassionate acts in my world. But yes, you’re right - It’s just a preference.

If I am hungry I go to the shop and buy some food. I promise to bring back something for the cat too. No one needs to die this time… Except maybe the squeaky toy :wink:

Yes. That’s right. The ‘world’ (in my confusing quote) is limited and impermanent and it is the equivalent to suffering, e.g. AN4.45


For monastics, eat what is given with gratitude. For lay followers, consider all the teachings and make a choice as best we can in keeping with our understanding of love and compassion, and of what sustains our body in a healthy way. And whatever food does come our way, eat it with gratitude. We need not and will not in this lifetime be agreeing on what is the best choice (meat eating or vegetarian) in this regard. Let each person make their own decision based on their caring for all beings and contemplation of the guidelines of a virtuous life as given in the teachings of the Buddha. After study and contemplation, we follow our inner light. May all beings be well and happy.


One purpose of the scriptures is to help us see the reality as it is and respond in a compassionate way. This video is in harmony with that, since it helps us to make an informed compassionate decision regarding eating meat, a personal choice beyond rules:


Agriculture focused on yield tends to deplete topsoil, which is a practicing leading inevitably to starvation. The alternatives include:

  • Permaculture focuses on long-term sustainability, prioritizing regeneration over yield. Permaculture, by its very nature, requires broad community support. Simply put, permaculture is more expensive for consumers. Short-term, tactical farming practices are “cheaper” because they deplete non-renewable resources such as topsoil. Permaculture requires a partnership with animals. It requires a partnership because plants thrive on animal manure.
  • Hydroponics relies on inorganic nutrients such as water, nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium, etc. It’s even more expensive than permaculture, but can provide food locally throughout the entire year. Sourcing hydroponic ingredients is challenging. For example, potassium is obtained via mining and chemical extraction with substantial waste.

Although I’m a vegetarian, I think that focusing on veganism or vegetarianism alone tends to the dogmatic. Instead, I would hope that each of us can think about the best way to feed us all compassionately according to the Dhamma.

AN10.27:10.4: What one thing? ‘All sentient beings are sustained by food.’ Becoming completely disillusioned, dispassionate, and freed regarding this one thing, seeing its limits and fully comprehending its meaning, a mendicant makes an end of suffering in this very life.

Live sustainably or suffer.