Buddhism most basic perception is avoid killing.

Assume the house is filled by termite and killing is unavoidable, assume house is too badly affected and without killing need the house to be left unoccupant for months and repair is very expensive.

This is question is meant for normal lay Buddhist and not monk.

How is Buddhism handle in this case ?

There was a Mahayana Buddhist Scholar answered is to recite Mantra to the ants that been killed as much as possible n hope ants can incarnate to a better place.


5 Answers 5


Keep your area as clean as possible. Many forest monks always keep their area dry and clean. No puddle, no food crumbs, put wet trash can away from the area.

  • it happened to my house that tenanted by someone. Very dirty tenant. i just use those pest spray but not direct to ant. Hope they r not dizzy n died. @Stargazer Cybertech Commented Oct 16, 2021 at 10:59
  • Well... It never been easy for lay person. Even a buddhist king must sometime put a death penalty to a crime. Just do the best we can to avoid those killing situations. Commented Oct 16, 2021 at 13:24

Life wants to promote life. That too a very special life . A life which is free of diseases and dirt. A life which is holy. But if your house is infested with termites then probably you have karmic problems. For example , there was a locust attack in Saudi Arabia, Africa , Pakistan , India etc ..millions of hectares of crop got eaten by those insects. Why do you think that happened ? It was our karma in some ways. Life would generally not interfere in your holy pursuit but if it happens then it means you may have become impure in some ways. So what should be done? As a layperson you will obviously kill those insects for survival and if you are serious about Dhamma then you will commit to 8 fold path and never intentionally kill any insect.

  • Well, about the Karmic problem statement, it is a truth statement. But, my teacher told us do not stuck into that statement but rather look into best solution and treat it as training background. There are some stressful old folks that I shared Buddhism to them have some negative response on this as they always stuck into this karmic problem from their past life and keep on complaining of their issues. Commented Sep 13, 2020 at 0:38
  • cessation of karma is possible(is desirable) if we strictly follow the noble 8 fold path. Commented Sep 13, 2020 at 1:15

Assume.... killing is unavoidable. How is Buddhism handle in this case ? This is question is meant for normal lay Buddhist and not monk.

Buddhist texts don't instruct to kill or offer any way to kill properly, you are out of your mind.

That being said, if you are going to do it, then do it knowing it is wrong action and don't fool yourself.

If you are inclined to do it then also be honest about what this tells about you as a "Buddhist". Things like you are probably not very much restrained by conscientiousness, not seeing much danger in transgressions, lacking urgency, mindfulness of death not well established, cruelty, greed and general lack of development of the spiritual faculties like faith & judgement.

You should also reflect on this action before, during and after doing it. It is very blameworthy and you should have a lot to think about.

Perhaps after due reflection your mind will be inclined to abstain from killing. Perhaps the reason that you are in this situation where nature took over your house is because you keep doing bad actions.

Anyway if you practice Buddhism correctly you will get great fruition. If you don't you will have a bad destination.

I won't tell you to do it and not worry about it. The only way one gets to do it and not worry about it too much, is if you then stop completely like Angulimalla and even he suffered rather excessively for his killings.

Hell or animal womb is still an option for many people... Death is soon, we shouldn't be packing our bags with dead ants.

You might die before you kill these ants and just because one is thinking about these things one will have a bad throw if one was to pass away.

Therefore one shouldn't even entertain such thoughts, let alone doing it and all...


The five precepts are a training in virtue (sila) undertaken to purify the mind. The first precept is a training undertaken to not take a life intentionally. This applies to human life and also animal life, basically, any sentient beings with the five aggregates.

The one undertaking the precepts should try his best. If he lapses, then without feeling remorse, he should try his best the next time to mindfully stay with the training.

That said, killing an animal is not treated the same way as killing a human in Buddhism. In the Bhikkhu Patimokkha, the training rules for monks, killing a human being is grounds for immediate and irrevocable expulsion for life (parajika) from the monastic order. However, killing animals is an offense that requires only a confession (pacittiya).


Exchange of self and other... will open the dhamma door of the Tri-ratna as your teacher.

Termite: What? Ima greedy lil pig eating here... This one thing and this one thing only... pooping my breathing as I go along filling in the wood behind me. How is it not the samadhi you should be practicing? "Human".

Go ahead and kill it but imagine the self you cling to there instead; So it can attain your precious human form and practice with it just as it was previously doing, without the eating of wood and poop for breath of course.

That's a practice of a bodhisatta people don't even speak about; instead known to preach "ethics" as if life itself is a moral dilemma all of it's own as it arises and passes into being and not being.

Countless corpses at my feet; how dare anyone call it anything dishonorable as sand... it knows it was a mountain on the furthest shore; I just don't have the tongue for it even though, it could be mistaken for vanilla ice cream.

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