Chinese Buddhist Children's Stories
(Accounts of refraining from killing and releasing animals to make merit)
The Fallacy Of Meat-Eating
Some people say we must eat meat in order to stay alive and that if one doesn't eat meat one will simply not get enough nutrition. This is a very erroneous point of view.
Originally, humans came from the Light-Sound Heaven. When they arrived on earth, they nourished themselves with something called "the flavor of the earth." This food was very fragrant and tasty, but when the gods from the Light-Sound Heaven started to eat it, they got greedy and wanted to eat more and more. They only needed to eat a little and it would have been enough to fill them. In fact they needed only to look at it and they could have gotten their fill. But because of their greed, they ate more than they needed.
When these gods overate, their appearance began to change- they got ugly. Because they got ugly, they began to feel jealous of others. They got jealous of who were more beautiful than they. Those who did not eat a lot had a pleasant appearance. But those who were good-looking got arrogant and said, "Look at you; how ugly you are!" And that's the problem with those who are good looking-they get arrogant.
So along with the jealousy and arrogance came greed, hatred, and stupidity. When those three poisons accumulated enough, "the flavor of the earth" entirely vanished from the face of the earth. After that, there was no more "flavor of the earth" to partake of.
Then another type of food appeared. It was called the "fat of the land." Although the "fat of the land" wasn't as good tasting as the "flavor of the earth," it was still quite delicious, and so there were many who were very fond of it. Since there was a lot of it around, people got greedy again, and again their appearances changed and they got even uglier. Those who didn't eat too much still had handsome features.
As a result, the same problems arose. The fat ones got jealous, and this time it was even worst than before. Those who were arrogant got even more so than before. They either grew sour or got extremely conceited.
When the fat of the land disappeared, something else grew in the fields, which was called "wild rice." It grew naturally, without cultivation. It didn't need to be planted or threshed or hulled. People could just go out and pick it. This rice was still quite delicious. But as time went by, people began to go out to the fields and gather the grain to store in their barns. Because they had greedy minds, they wanted to keep the grain for themselves so that others could not get any of it to eat. And then the wild rice disappeared.
After that, people had to labor and toil in the fields to grow their food. So they planted the five grains. This is the way that people obtain their food even to this day.
In ancient times, people did not have to eat meat in order to live, and their lifespans were very long. Some people lived for ten thousand years. The people of today have such short lifespans because they are so fond of eating nutritious food. Because of that fondness, they eat to the point that they shorten their lifespans.
If everyone can stop eating meat, then the human lifespan will increase and slowly, slowly it can climb up to 84,ooo years.
Seeds of Great Compassion
Mahakashyapa asked the Buddha,
"Why is it that the Thus Come One does not allow eating meat?"
The Buddha replied,
"It is because meat eating cuts off the seeds of Great Compassion."
For hundred of thousands of years and ages,
There's been meat in the pot simmering in a stew,
Brewing up hatred, resentment and rage that will be hard to make level.
If you want to know the reason why this world id full of wars and fights.
Just listen one time to the cries that come from the slaughterhouse at midnight.
Waves of wars, madness and blood,
Sweep over us like a big flood,
This wound, so harsh and deep,
Is enough to make you and me weep,
By learning not to kill and fight,
We can save mankind from a terrible plight,
The number one very best deed,
Is just to stop eating meat.
Diet For Smart People
Smart people eat pure vegetables,
Stupid people find meat delectable.
If you don't want to end up dumb and daffy,
Go easy on the hamburger patties.
Even animals love their young:
The dog licks her litter, the cow licks her calf,
The hen protects he brood, all together under her wing,
While mother eel curls up her own body and lovingly guards her babies.
But people, greedy for mouth blessings,
Feed on other's offspring.
Animals feel pain as much as we human beings.
They have tears, too; perhaps you haven't seen them.
Chinese Buddhist Children's Stories (Accounts of refraining from killing and releasing animals to make merit)