Home » Features » Mañjuśrī Bodhisattva’s Teachings On Butchers & Buyers

[M]eat itself always derives from killing.
If there were no killing,
the lives of animals would remain unharmed.
If there were no meat-eater, there would be no killer.

— Shambhala King Pundarika
(Vimalaprabhā: Great Commentary On The Kālacakra)

In the Mañjuśrī Pradarshana (Teachings On Mañjuśrī’s Own View), this is taught,

Killing beings for money —
if no money were given, no killing would happen.
Both parties have a genuine link between doer and deed,
and are always killers of animals.

[Note 1: This is the essential and undeniable causal connection between killers of animals and buyers of their flesh. If there are no paying demanders (i.e. active customers), there would be no paid suppliers. In this sense, both as the two halves of the cycle of supply and demand are culpable for (co-)creating the negative karma of killing sentient beings, albeit one directly and the other slightly indirectly.]  

If a fish were bought with money
and the householder had no wrongdoing,
then how could Buddha images and so on
generate any merit? …

[Note 2: Buddhists who deny sensibility in the preceding verse contradict themselves with faith in the truth that reverencing and making offerings before Buddha images and other such Dharma practices create much merit, even when they as devotees are a degree ‘separate’ from the images, by not being their sculptors; just being their ‘users’.]

When a fish is eaten,
if the eater has no wrongdoing,
then when a stupa is worshipped,
the worshipper will have no merit.

[Note 3: Likewise, as another example, if ongoing meat-eaters as constant demanders of killing with their buying are never at fault at all, how would they as stupa-worshippers ever create any merit? Thus, buying and eating of meat create demerit, or negative karma, along with those who kill for selling meat.]  

Devoid of compassion, monks who search after
tastes of meat to bring to their tongues,
whether they are fully ordained or novices,
they will bear themselves the sin of killing and so forth,
and be damned to hell.

— Shambhala King Yashas
(Kālacakra Tantra Hṛdaya: Subsequent Heart Essence Of Kālacakra Tantra)

Translated verses from ‘The Faults Of Meat: Tibetan Buddhist Writings On Vegetarianism’
Edited by Geoffrey Barstow
Forewords by Khenpo Tsultrim Lodrö & Matthieu Ricard

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