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39

The Mahayana perspective on social and ecological ethics is based on the high ideals of symbiosis, harmony, and cooperation. In the old times there were wandering monks who did not work and lived on alms - in return they shared the nectar of Dharma. They were no parasites. And if some of them were, Buddha encouraged the householders to be selective in ...


26

In order to understand this issue, we have to understand morality according to Buddhism. In Theravada Buddhism, morality is completely based on the effect that an act has on the mind of the actor. Hence, eating meat need not be karmically negative, yet killing Hitler to "save" others from suffering need be, since it requires defilement to take the life of ...


18

"Without wisdom, effort, restraint of the senses, without giving up everything, I see no well-being for beings." -- The Buddha (SN 2.17) You can't have your cake and eat it too, unfortunately. The truth is the truth whether it is convenient or not. In this case, there are some fairly important truths that you have to consider when trying to decide what ...


14

The five precepts are an absolute entry-level teaching that is designed to help the practitioner master basic discipline of self-control and self-reflection. Abstaining from killing, stealing etc. implies basic ability to watch one's mind for harmful thoughts and emotions, and to prevent them from getting acted out. In light of the above, the no-killing ...


14

Theravada and Vajrayana Buddhists (Tibetan, SE Asian) and Japanese Mahayana Buddhists are not vegetarian. So if you don't want to be a vegetarian, there are plenty of traditions that don't bother with this rule. And as for rules, there are plenty of traditions that de-emphasize rules altogether. So that leaves East Asian Buddhism. The traditional arguments ...


10

It's not justifiable even if the killing is for self or others protection. If killing of an animal fulfills below five conditions it will give bad results (akusla karma vipaka) There should be a living being Knowing that its a living being Intention of killing Act to kill Animal is killed by the act Note: Even If someone kills an animal which is ...


10

Where does one draw the line for which forms of life are ok to destroy, and which ones are not? That (i.e. "which forms of life?") might be not the right question. If you're describing the situation based on a premise of violence versus non-violence, then another way to look at it might be aggression versus non-aggression, and/or aggression versus ...


9

I've been to a lecture in which a Tibetan Buddhist monk (specifically, a nyingmapa) was asked the same question by a teenage girl. Basically, his answer was, such killing would both end some existing suffering and create some new suffering. Because regular person does not see all complexity of karma network spanning multiple lives, his or her acts are very ...


9

In the past, I had some success with a no kill mouse trap like this one. It allows you to catch the mouse and release it in an appropriate area outside. Now we share our home with 2 dogs and a cat. Mice don't seem to want to be here.


9

My knowledge in Buddhism is quite poor. IMO it is a greater sin to kill a larger animal than to kill a smaller animal but this cannot be the case always! Let me ask you a question. Which is easier, to kill an ant or to kill an elephant? Generally the effort and planning you have to go through to kill an elephant is much greater than to kill an ant. The ...


8

Buddha said that we could eat meat under a few conditions: You cannot kill the animal You cannot ask for someone to kill a specific animal for you to eat, or suspect the animal was killed for you You cannot see the animal being killed You cannot hear the animal being killed the Buddha also said that we should not eat certain types of meat like elephants (...


7

Mice are intensely territorial, it's hard to get them to walk away from their turf. Luckily they are also short lived. We often have little mice come in for a bite, and I try to block their entrances though not always successfully. Once I had a Bandicoot the size of a small cat occupy the house. We live in a large old house with a garden that houses them, ...


7

Theravada Buddhist Answer. Whichever way you spin it, killing(intentionally) is bad Karma which you will have to pay for at some point in Samsara unless it becomes defunct. You can draw the line anywhere you like, but Karma is Karma. If the tapeworm can be removed without killing, you won't break the precept. Otherwise, you can use it to becomes ...


7

"Would the arahant kill the killer? Would a Buddha kill the killer?" 'Yes, Sutavā, you heard correctly [...]. A bhikkhu who is an arahant [...] is incapable of transgression in nine cases. (1) He is incapable of intentionally depriving a living being of life" -- AN 9.7 (Bodhi trans.) "Here, Visakha, a noble disciple considers thus: 'For all their ...


7

Such a question assumes death is the cessation of existence. This is not the Buddhist view. Killing the murderer won't solve anything, it merely brushes the dirt under the carpet. Since violent thoughts will reemerge in the killer's next life, and grow once more because they weren't ever eradicated, nothing is achieved by killing. Killing someone is ...


7

According to the Bhikkhu Patimokkha (quoted below), which are rules for monks, killing a human is grounds for immediate and irreversible dismissal from the monastic order (parajika). However, deliberately killing an animal is an offense that requires only confession (pacittiya) within the monastic order, usually with the intention not to do it again. It's ...


6

The Buddha reportedly ate a meal of pork at least once in his life. So one pig had to lose its life. The Buddha ate rice pudding so some cow had to eat the grass to produce milk and some weeds must have lost their life to have grown the rice. It seems that no matter what we do in life some harm is done. Maybe do less harm would be more sensible. The Buddha ...


6

Catch and release! You can make a simple trap with a paper towel roll, some leftover food, and a bucket. There are lots of clever, simple, humane traps. In general you should just catch it and release it far away.


6

Also known at the Trolley Problem from Game Theory. My answer is that this kind of question is a red herring. Ethics is about how you wrestle with experience to try to minimise suffering. Hypothetical questions like this one are pointless because they will never occur as real dilemmas. Buddhist ethics is focussed on how one actually behaves in every day life....


6

Definitely no killing. That's the first among the Five Precept to be observed. Do what you can to help. If it's a large animal, call the local animal shelter helpline. If it's a small animal like a bird or a bug, at least move it to a safer place like under shade of a tree to avoid the hot sun and to prevent people from stepping on it, cover it with some ...


6

What you say or justify do not count. What counts is your volition. For volition to give result the volition should have any of the 6 roots (3 wholesome - alob, adosa & amoha + 3 un wholesome - lob, dosa & moha ). When you accidentally step on an insect you do not know of its existance non of these roots arise in your mind, as you do not have any ...


5

I feel like sometimes the "plain", most obvious meaning of the rule (e.g. don't kill people) is taken to extremes (e.g. killing mosquitoes that spread diseases which kill you, killing a bear which is eating you), and the very intuitive repulsion the mind feels regarding the extreme is used to sow doubt in the rule itself. I don't think the Buddha taught by ...


5

First rule (of layperson) is actually includes intentional killing of any animals down to even insects. See for reference http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/bodhi/wheel282.html#prec2 "I undertake the training rule to abstain from taking life." Here the word pana, meaning that which breathes, denotes any living being that has breath and ...


5

My theory is that it is not wrong to directly deprive plants of their life, in order to eat them, unlike animals, because they don't have the five aggregates. In my opinion, plants do not have mental formations and consciousness although they have form, sensations and perception. Without the five aggregates, they are not sentient beings.


5

The original poster asks: "Where to draw the line..." Therein is the key to the answer: there is noplace you can draw the line, thin and bright, therefore you cannot draw it. There is, however, an answer. The mouse and the tapeworm situations have similarities and also disparities. The mouse will infiltrate and foul your food, and carry disease and ...


5

MN 1.3.1 Kakachupama sutta Majjhima Nikāya 21 - Kaka­cūpama­sutta The Parable of the Saw "Monks, even if bandits were to savagely sever you, limb by limb, with a double-handled saw, even then, whoever of you harbors ill will at heart would not be upholding my Teaching. Monks, even in such a situation you should train yourselves thus: '...


5

Apart from breaking the first precept and creating bad Karma for yourself, there's no guarantee that by killing you are going to reduce it's suffering. What if it was born in a realm lower than the animal realm? So if you can't think of any way to help, practice Upekkha: Beings are owners of their deeds. Whose [if not theirs] is the choice by which they ...


5

"Chethanaham Bikkhawe Kammam Wadami" - volition is Karma Did you not prevent it because mice are usually an annoyance and 1 less mouse makes your life better? If so, it's bad Karma. Later you may make up an excuse like "not wanting to interfere with nature". But what matters is the intention at the time. If you were wishing for the mouse to escape, it is ...


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