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Lankavatara Sutra & The Faults of Eating Meat - 1/7


(Some lines on the first three pages might be missing. To be updated & double checked May 15/AK.)

Shabkar says it is recorded in the Lankavatara-sutra: *

After The Great Bodhisattva Mahamati had recited certain verses before the Lord, he made the following request:

"Lord and Tathagata, Foe-Destroyer and Perfect Buddha, I pray you, tell me how I and other Bodhisattva Mahasattvas of the present time and in the future may remove the desire for the taste of meat in those who are soiled by the habit of consuming the flesh and blood of sentient beings. I beseech you Lord, set forth the teaching so that they may perceive the wrongfulness of consuming meat, and that, longing instead for the taste of Dharma, they may cultivate the kind of love that embraces all beings, cherishing them as their own dear children. Explain your doctrine so that, filled with love, they may progress upon the grounds of realization of the Bodhisattvas and come swiftly to enlightenment, perfect and unsurpassed, or, failing this, to refreshment in the state of Shravakas and Pratyekabuddhas, thence to progress to the unsurpassable state of Buddhahood. Lord, even those who follow not the Dharma but uphold false doctrines, falling to the extreme positions of existence or non-existence, propounding an eternal entity or the nihilistic void of the materialists? Even they proscribe the eating of meat. Even they abstain from it! But you, Lord, Protector of the World, you teach a doctrine that is flavoured with compassion. It is the teaching of the perfect Buddhas. And yet we eat meat nonetheless; we have not put an end to it. Therefore, that I and the other great Bodhisattvas may set forth your doctrine as it is indeed, I entreat you, reveal the faults of consuming meat in the name of that compassion with which you regard all the beings in the world with an equal love."

The Lord answered, "Mahamati, listen carefully and remember what I say. For excellent is your request, and I will teach you."

* See also.
Lankavatara Sutra Chapter 8 as transl. by W. Bagley [download PDF - 300 KB] and Lankavatara Sutra Chapter 8 as transl. by D.T. Suzuki [download PDF - 119 KB]

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