Karma and killing sentient beings

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Malcolm
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by Malcolm » Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:06 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:04 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:50 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:33 pm


Oh yes, I see that. I guess it depends also upon the monk who is drawing the inference from what information they have. You are saying that there is correct inference and incorrect inference, but maybe all that is required is an honest inference that the meat may not be suitable to eat, even if the connection is indirect, rather than dealing in absolutes?
Some people argue, erroneously in my estimation, that meat for sale is the same as meat ordered specifically for oneself. However, if someone feels that personally, that is up to them. But if they try to convince me I should accept that point of view I will refute it.
In terms of vipaka rather than personal preference, would you agree that both monks in my example are fine, as both either ate the meat or did not eat the meat according to their honest inference?
Yes, the same. No vipaka.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

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Mantrik
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by Mantrik » Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:18 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:06 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 10:04 pm
Malcolm wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 9:50 pm


Some people argue, erroneously in my estimation, that meat for sale is the same as meat ordered specifically for oneself. However, if someone feels that personally, that is up to them. But if they try to convince me I should accept that point of view I will refute it.
In terms of vipaka rather than personal preference, would you agree that both monks in my example are fine, as both either ate the meat or did not eat the meat according to their honest inference?
Yes, the same. No vipaka.
Thanks. I felt we spent a lot of time on personal morality on the Great Vegetarian Debate thread, but Vipaka is pretty darn important to clarify.
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Om Thathpurushaya Vidhmahe
Suvarna Pakshaya Dheemahe
Thanno Garuda Prachodayath

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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by PadmaVonSamba » Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:22 am

Whatever being "lived" in that sausage at the butcher shop moved out a long time ago, way before you got there.
Is there a difference between setting fire to me now, while I am alive,
and cremating my body after I die?
That is precisely the difference between the act of killing and the act of doing whatever with a dead body.
That's the precise point where the issue of killing becomes a karmic act.
It has to do with causing of the onset of a particular suffering.

All things are interconnected.
The degree to which one's actions are connected to the eventual killing of a living being varies
from being absolutely direct,such as dropping a live lobster into a pot of boiling water,
to, say, paying taxes that help maintain a highway on which lobster trappers transport live lobsters to stores and restaurants.
That would be such a tenuous connection, even though, technically, your actions are very, very, indirectly making the lobster killing possible, it also makes ambulances possible, thus saving lives. So, at that degree, any karmic plus or minus is pointless to worry about.

There is probably a mathematical formula for calculating the diminishing returns on karma.

If you take a vow not to kill, the karmic weight is different than if you don't take the vow not to kill.
But it also depends on the motivation, and also:
1.whether one had the purposeful intention to kill
2. whether one takes satisfaction from, or is is glad for having killed
3. whether one looks forward to killing again

Our bodies are constantly killing off tiny and even microscopic creatures.
This is why Buddhists practice the intentional "releasing of lives" such as fish, or even live worms from (fishing) bait stores, because, try as we might, we cannot avoid causing suffering. This is one of the characteristics of samsara.
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Vasana
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by Vasana » Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:06 pm

:good:
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Vasana
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by Vasana » Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:08 pm

Thanks for the clarifications, Malcolm. It's interesting that even some very eminent Dzogchenpas like Chatral Rinpoche and Nyala Pema Dündul were so against the casual eating of meat. So in this regard, the acceptability of eating meat is still dependent upon very certain contexts and circumstances.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Mantrik
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by Mantrik » Tue Mar 20, 2018 2:19 pm

PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:22 am
Whatever being "lived" in that sausage at the butcher shop moved out a long time ago, way before you got there.
Is there a difference between setting fire to me now, while I am alive,
and cremating my body after I die?
Then why whisper mantras over food?

Surely we are then wasting our time if there is no karmic link to the beings which died to bring it to us?
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Om Thathpurushaya Vidhmahe
Suvarna Pakshaya Dheemahe
Thanno Garuda Prachodayath

Micchāmi Dukkaḍaṃ (मिच्छामि दुक्कडम्)

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Malcolm
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by Malcolm » Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:34 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 2:19 pm
PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:22 am
Whatever being "lived" in that sausage at the butcher shop moved out a long time ago, way before you got there.
Is there a difference between setting fire to me now, while I am alive,
and cremating my body after I die?
Then why whisper mantras over food?

Surely we are then wasting our time if there is no karmic link to the beings which died to bring it to us?
We use the meat as a means of directing our attention to that being. The mind is not obstructed.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

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Mantrik
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by Mantrik » Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:55 pm

Malcolm wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 7:34 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 2:19 pm
PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:22 am
Whatever being "lived" in that sausage at the butcher shop moved out a long time ago, way before you got there.
Is there a difference between setting fire to me now, while I am alive,
and cremating my body after I die?
Then why whisper mantras over food?

Surely we are then wasting our time if there is no karmic link to the beings which died to bring it to us?
We use the meat as a means of directing our attention to that being. The mind is not obstructed.
Exactly. I felt PadmaVonSamba was applying a limitation which some practitioners do not recognise, or rather do not need to consider or accept.

In differentiating HYT practitioners I assumed you were also including Dzogchenpas, but perhaps the Dzogchen path wasn't overtly stated.........hence my 'why whisper mantras' question. ;)

Does Vidya require consideration of karma and vipaka?
Perhaps Dzogchenpas only need to look at their karma in as far is identifying what is obscuring their true nature?
http://www.khyung.com

Om Thathpurushaya Vidhmahe
Suvarna Pakshaya Dheemahe
Thanno Garuda Prachodayath

Micchāmi Dukkaḍaṃ (मिच्छामि दुक्कडम्)

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mechashivaz
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by mechashivaz » Tue Mar 20, 2018 8:29 pm

So what do we make of tantrikas or dzogchenpas who actually slay an animal for the purposes of both eating and liberating? In the book Enlightened Vagabond: The Life and Teachings of Patrul Rinpoche, there is an episode where Patrul Rinpoche runs into his root guru, Do Khyentse Yeshe Dorje, thinking him a bandit chief at first until he recognizes his dagger. Do Khyentse is so delighted to see his pupil he slays an animal from his heard and they feast on it that evening, Patrul, a strict vegetarian, included. Patrul's traveling companion of the moment looked on in horror as Patrul ate away and when inquiring why how Patrul could partake he says something along the lines of: Do Khyentse can liberate beings through their slaughter so there was no immorality occurring. Something to that effect. (Sorry if I butchered some of the story, heard on audio book a while ago.)

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PadmaVonSamba
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Re: Karma and killing sentient beings

Post by PadmaVonSamba » Wed Mar 21, 2018 2:22 am

PadmaVonSamba wrote:
Tue Mar 20, 2018 12:22 am
Whatever being "lived" in that sausage at the butcher shop moved out a long time ago, way before you got there.
Taking it to the next level...
There is no "being" that can be said to exist either inside or outside a body.
No "self" of a human, or a cow, or a chicken actually even lives in a body.
The composite of the body arises along with the mind of attachment.
The animal never moved out of that sausage. It never lived there to begin with.
But it thinks it does, just as you and I, through our mental experience, think we are selves living in our bodies.
Thus, when a rabbit is chased by a fox, it doesn't move its mind. It moves its body!

The karma here is imbued with reality in sort of the same way we give Monopoly money value when playing the board game,
except in the game of samsara, we think experience it as real.
Enlightened beings see it as illusion, just as we know that the money in a Monopoly game doesn't really have any value, but we play along, because how that's how the game works, going around and around the board.
(It's kind of like samsara too, isn't it?)
So, the rules about killing really have more to do with how it all plays out in our very realistic illusion.
Perhaps this will help clarify the question about Patrul Rinpoche, and tantrikas or dzogchenpas who actually slay an animal for the purposes of both eating and liberating.

It's also taught that after a being dies, it still clings to the body, which is why the tradition exists of not moving a dead person for a few days,
and also why it is often suggested to give away valuable objects (sentimental or material) before one dies, because, for example, if you always wore a ring on your finger and really cherished it, there will still be a manifestation of attachment after death, and if there is an awareness of someone else wearing it, or even if it's in a box or something, there is still a sensation that it should properly be on your finger, which it isn't, and this interferes with peacefully passing through the bardo.
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