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I now take soy milk instead of
cow's milk because the cows are very
cruelly treated in factory farming.
Ever since I learned about it nine
or ten years ago, I gave up milk. I
believe it's the food of violence.
The cows are confined to a small
area. They can't move and are just
milk manufacturing machines.
Dada J. P. Vaswani
Spiritual Head, Sadhu Vanwani
Mission in an interview in Hinduism
Below are quotations from Hindu
scripture and leading Hindus
both past and present concerning animal
rights; the humane treatment of animals
and adopting a vegetarian/vegan diet.
This page is part of a section about
animal rights and religious and
philosophical belief, it is the
forerunner of an in-depth article
concerning Hinduism and animal rights
which I hope to include here in due
Also links to Hindu websites advocating Vegetarian/Veganism and
articles of interest.
The Vedas, a sanskrit word meaning
knowledge, are sacred texts that
originated in ancient India and are the
oldest scriptures of Hinduism.
the Vedas and other Hindu scripture
the attainment of spiritual
knowledge and development begins
Firstly quotations and brief
comments from Hindu sacred text:
Srimad Bhagavatam, are Hindu Scriptures, compiled some 5,000
years ago by Krishna Dvaip‚yana Vy‚sadeva who also
compiled the Vedas and wrote the Mah‚bh‚rata. The
Srimad Bhagavatam is intended as a guide to spiritual
progress and contains comprehensive
range of Vedic knowledge
Non-injury, truthfulness, freedom from theft, lust,
anger and greed, and an effort to do what is agreeable
and beneficial to all creatures - this is the common
duty of all castes. Ö To be non-violent to human beings
and to be a killer or enemy of the poor animals is
Satan's philosophy. In this age there is always enmity
against poor animals and therefore the poor creatures
are always anxious. The reaction of the poor animals is
being forced on human society and therefore there is
always the strain of cold or hot war between men,
individually, collectively or nationally."
Mahabharata or Mahabharat 900 BC is a major ancient Indian Epic, it is
an important text of Hinduism. With about one hundred
thousand verses, long prose passages, and about 1.8
million words in total, the Mahabharata is the longest
epic poem in the world. It emphasises the important
goals of human life and our interconnection
with one another.
who desires to augment his own flesh by eating the flesh
of other creatures lives in misery in whatever species
he may take his birth.
The purchaser of flesh performs violence by his wealth;
he who eats flesh does so by enjoying its taste; the
killer does violence by actually tying and killing the
animal. Thus, there are three forms of killing. He who
brings flesh or sends for it, he who cuts off the limbs
of an animal, and he who purchases, sells, or cooks
flesh and eats it--all these are to be considered
there were nobody who ate flesh, then there would be
nobody to slay living creatures. The man who slays
living creatures kills them for the sake of the person
who eats flesh. If flesh were not considered as food,
there would then be no destruction of living creatures.
It is for the sake of the eater that the destruction of
living entities is carried on in the world. Since, O you
of great splendor, the period of life is shortened by
persons who kill living creatures or cause them to be
killed, it is clear that the person who seeks his own
good should give up meat altogether. Those dreadful
persons who are engaged in the destruction of living
beings never find protectors when they are in need. Such
persons should always be molested and punished even as
beast of prey.
That wretched man who kills living creatures for the
sake of those who would eat them commits great sin. The
eaterís sin is not as great. That wretched man who,
following the path of religious rites and sacrifices as
laid down in the Vedas, would kill a living creature
from a desire to eats its flesh, will certainly go to
hell. That man who having eaten flesh abstains from it
afterwards acquires great merit on account of such
abstention from sin. He who arranges for obtaining
flesh, he who approves of those arrangements, he who
kills, he who buys or sells, he who cooks, and he who
eats it, [acquire the sin of those who] are all
considered as eaters of flesh. [Therefore] that man who
wishes to avoid disaster should abstain from the meat of
every living creature.
Hence a person of purified soul should be merciful to
all living creatures. That man, O king, who abstains
from every kind of meat from his birth forsooth,
acquires a large space in the celestial region. They who
eat the flesh of animals who are desirous of life, are
themselves [later] eaten by the animals they eat. This
is my opinion. Since he has eaten me, I shall eat him in
return. This, O Bharata, forms the character as Mamsah
[meaning flesh] of Mamsah [me he, or ďme heĒ will eat
for having eaten him]. The destroyer is always slain.
After him the eater meets with the same fate.
Abstention from cruelty is the highest Religion.
Abstention from cruelty is the greatest self-restraint.
Abstention from cruelty is the highest gift. Abstention
from cruelty is the highest penance. Abstention from
cruelty is the highest sacrifice. Abstention from
cruelty is the highest power. Abstention from cruelty is
the greatest friend. Abstention from cruelty is the
The Bhagavad Gita
Bhagavad Gita "Song of God" is one of the most important
and revered sacred scriptures of
Hinduism, and considered as one of the most important
philosophical classics of the world. It is part of the
Mahabharata one of the two major Sanskrit epics of
ancient India, the other being the Ramayana. The
teacher of the Bhagavad Gita is Krishna, an important
deity considered in some traditions to be svayam bhagavan, or the Supreme Being.
is dearest to God who has no enemies among the living
beings, who is nonviolent to all creatures.
look upon all creatures equally; none are less dear to
me and none more dear. But those who worship me with
love live in me, and I come to life in them.
alone sees truly who sees the Lord the same in every
creature...seeing the same Lord everywhere, he does not
harm himself or others.
The concept of harmlessness towards all has been created
by Me alone.
Avoiding harm to all creatures... this is true
knowledge. All else is ignorance.
Nonviolence... and mercy to all life forms are the
goals of godly persons who are endowed with My nature.
Avoiding harm... and working towards the happiness of
all living creatures is the duty of everyone.
fearless and pure; never waver in your determination or
your dedication to the spiritual life. Give freely. Be
self-controlled, sincere, truthful, loving, and full of
the desire to serve...Learn to be detached and to take
joy in renunciation. Do not get angry or harm any living
creature, but be compassionate and gentle; show good
will to all. Cultivate vigor, patience, will, purity;
avoid malice and pride. Then, you will achieve your
Manusmriti, or laws of Manu, is one of eighteen Smritis, (which means "what is remembered") of the
Dharma shasta, or "laws of righteous conduct".
The Smritis are of human composition and are an ancient
Sanskrit code of conduct for the individual, society,
the community, and the nation. Highly revered by
orthodox devotees of Brahmanism.
Having well considered the origin of
flesh-foods, and the cruelty of
fettering and slaying corporeal beings,
let man entirely abstain from eating
Meat can never be obtained without injury to living
creatures, and injury to sentient beings is detrimental
to the attainment of heavenly bliss; let him therefore
shun the use of meat. Having well considered the
disgusting origin of flesh and the cruelty of fettering
and slaying corporeal beings, let him entirely abstain
from eating flesh.
permits the slaughter of an animal, he who cuts it up,
he who kills it, he who buys or sells meat, he who cooks
it, he who serves it up, and he who eats it, must all be
considered as the slayers of the animal. There is no
greater sinner than that man who though not worshiping
the gods or the ancestors, seeks to increase the bulk of
his own flesh by the flesh of other beings.
He who injures
harmless creatures from a wish to give himself pleasure,
never finds happiness in this life or the next.
He who does not seek
to cause the sufferings of bonds and death to living
creatures, (but) desires the good of all (beings),
obtains endless bliss. He who does not injure any
(creature) attains without an effort what he thinks of,
what he undertakes, and what he fixes his mind on.
By the restraint of
his senses, by the destruction of love and hatred, and
by the abstention from injuring the creatures, he
becomes fit for immortality.
Yajur Veda, are
collection of mantras and verses, the third of four
canonical texts of Hinduism known as the Vedas, the
oldest sacred texts of Hinduism.
You must not use your God-given body for killing God's
creatures, whether they are human, animal or whatever.
Yajur Veda 12.32.90
Purana one of the major eighteen Puranas, a Hindu
The Puranas "of ancient times" are a group of important
Hindu (or Jain and Buddhist) religious texts, notably
consisting of narratives of the history of the universe
from creation to destruction, genealogies of kings,
heroes, sages, and demigods, and descriptions of Hindu
cosmology, philosophy, and geography.
all the gifts only one is supreme. it is the freedom
from fear For all of the creatures of this
universe. There is no other gift greater than this.
Regarded as the world's greatest
The Tirukural was written in Tamil about
2100 years ago. The Tirukural is a
classic of couplets, composed by
Tiruvalluvar an Indian sage, it give
us an insight into the lofty ethics
and wisdom of ancient Indiana.
Below are quotations from the
Tirkural admonishing against the eating of meat and causing harm
to any creature:
Verse 251 How can he practice true
compassion Who eats the flesh of an
animal to fatten his own flesh?
Verse 252 Riches cannot be found in
the hands of the thriftless, Nor can
compassion be found in the hearts of
those who eat meat.
Verse 253 Goodness is never one with
the minds of these two: One who
wields a weapon and one who feasts on
a creatures' flesh.
Verse 254 If you ask, "What is
kindness and what is unkind?" It is
not killing and killing. Thus,
eating flesh is never virtuous.
Verse 255 Life is perpetuated by not
eating meat. The clenched jaws of
hell hold those who do.
Verse 256 If the world did not
purchase and consume meat, There
would be none to slaughter and offer
meat for sale.
Verse 257 When a man realizes that
meat is the butchered flesh Of
another creature, he must abstain
from eating it.
Verse 258 Perceptive souls who have
abandoned passion Will not feed on
flesh abandoned by life.
Verse 259 Greater then a thousand
ghee offerings consumed in
sacrificial fires Do not do
sacrifice and consume any living
Verse 260 All that lives will press
palms together in prayerful
adoration Of those who refuse to
slaughter and savor meat.
It is the principle of the pure in
heart never to injure others, even
when they themselves have been
Verse 321 What is virtuous conduct?
It is never destroying life, For
killing leads to every other sin.
Verse 322 Of all the virtues summed
by ancient sages the foremost are
these: To partake of food one has
shared and to protect all living
Verse 324 What is the good way? It is the path
that reflects on how it may avoid
killing any living creature. Refrain
from taking precious life from any
living being, even to save your own
Verse 328 By sacrifice of life some
gain great wealth and good, But
sagacious men scorn such gains.
Verse 327 Refrain from taking
precious life from any living being,
Even to save your own life.
Verse 329 Those whose trade is
killing creatures are deemed defiled
By men who know the defiling nature
of being mean.
Eminent Hindu theologians and philosophers
Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, 1869 - 1948,
commonly called by the honorific Mahatma, which means
great soul, was born in Porbandar, a coastal town in
present-day Gujarat, India. He was the pre-eminent
political and spiritual leader of India, best known for his non violent struggle for
India's freedom during the Indian independence movement.
With one exception during a short period in his
youth Gandhi was a strict vegetarian
To my mind, the life of a lamb is no less precious
than that of a human being. I should be unwilling to
take the life of a lamb for the sake of the human
I want to realize brotherhood or identity not merely
with the beings called human, but I want to realize
identity with all life, even with such things as
crawl upon earth.
do feel that spiritual progress does demand at some
stage that we should cease to kill our fellow
creatures for the satisfaction of our bodily wants.
It is necessary to correct the error that
vegetarianism has made us weak in mind, or passive
or inert in action. I do not regard flesh-food as
necessary at any stage
hold flesh-food to be unsuited to our species. We
err in copying the lower animal world if we are
superior to it
I abhor vivisection with my
whole soul. All the scientific discoveries stained with
innocent blood I count as of no consequence.
It is very significant
that some of the most
thoughtful and cultured men
are partisans of a pure vegetable diet
The greatness of a nation
and its moral progress can be judged by the way its
animals are treated
I still believe that man,
not having been given the power of creation, does not
posses the right of destroying the meanest creature that
lives. The perogative of destruction belongs solely to
the Creator of all that lives.
Complete non-violence is complete absence of ill-will
against all that lives. It therefore embraces even
sub-human life, not excluding noxious insects and
beasts. They have not been created to feed our
destructive propensities. If we only knew the mind of
the Creator, we should find their proper place in His
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada,
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, was a Gaudiya
Vaishnava teacher and the founder-acharya of the
International Society for Krishna Consciousness, commonly known as the "Hare Krishna Movement
To be nonviolent to human beings and to be a
killer or enemy of the poor animals is Satanís
philosophy. In this age there is always enmity
against poor animals, and therefore the poor
creatures are always anxious. The reaction of the
poor animals is being forced on human society, and
therefore there is always strain of cold or hot war
between men, individually, collectively or
C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
to kill nothing, that is love.
A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada
Hunting involves many terrible Karmic aspects. In
murdering a father or mother animal, very likely some
young creatures are made orphans, left unprotected in
the wilderness. And, often, clumsy hunters only succeed
in wounding the creatures; thus escaping immediate
destruction, the maimed animals may roam in agony for
days upon days, until Death finally supervenes. More
misery in trapping: caught in the wicked traps, many
creatures actually gnaw off their own paws, to gain the
Swami Noshervanji quoted in the pamphlet The Dhammapada:
the virtuous path published circa 1963 by the
brotherhoold of the buddha (swami noshervanji dinshah),
malaga, new jersey
Be Pure.Info Hindu website
On the spiritual path, there are several
reasons why a person is recommended to
be vegetarian. One primary reason is
that we need to see the spiritual nature
within all living beings, and that
includes the animals and other creatures
as well. Universal brotherhood means
nonviolence to both humans and animals.
It consists of
understanding that animals also have
souls. They are alive, conscious, and
feel pain. And these are the indications
of the presence of consciousness, which
is the symptom of the soul.
click the link below to go straight to
the section on vegetarianism.
Be Pure. Info Vegetarianism
Recommended in Vedic Scripture By Stephen Knapp
there seems to be some confusion or lack of clarity
on whether the Vedic path condones or condemns the
eating of meat. Often times I hear Indians and
followers of the Vedic path explain that meat eating
is all right, that the Vedic shastras do not condemn
it. Of course, in this day and age meat eating
includes and supports the whole meat industry, which
is the systematic slaughter of thousands of animals
on a daily basis. But if we actually research the
Vedic texts we will find that there are numerous
references in the various portions of the Vedic
literature which explain in no uncertain terms the
karmic dangers of meat-eating and unnecessary animal
slaughter. These indicate that meat eating should be
given up for oneís spiritual and even material
progress. This means that the Vedic conclusions that
some people present for meat-eating are not
accurate, and that they have never studied their own
religious books very thoroughly. This is something
that is important to understand, so let us take a
To read the rest of
Vegetarianism Recommended in Vedic Scripture
How to Win an
Argument with a Meat Eater
Here now is
The Hindu Virtue of Vegetarianism, with facts on the
dangers of meat-eating, the "new four food groups,"
excerpts from Food for the Spirit, and quotations from
- Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami
Vegetarianism, known in Sanskrit as Shakahara, was for
thousands of years a principle of health and
environmental ethics throughout India...
vegetarianism integral to non injury?" In my book,
Dancing with Siva, this question is addressed as
follows: "Hindus teach vegetarianism as a way to live
with a minimum of hurt to other beings, for to consume
meat, fish, fowl or eggs is to participate indirectly in
acts of cruelty and violence against the animal kingdom.
The abhorrence of injury and killing of any kind leads
quite naturally to a vegetarian diet, shakahara. The
meat-eater's desire for meat drives another to kill and
provide that meat. The act of the butcher begins with
the desire of the consumer. Meat-eating contributes to a
mentality of violence, for with the chemically complex
meat ingested, one absorbs the slaughtered creature's
fear, pain and terror. These qualities are nourished
within the meat-eater, perpetuating the cycle of cruelty
and confusion. When the individual's consciousness lifts
and expands, he will abhor violence and not be able to
even digest the meat, fish, fowl and eggs he was
formerly consuming. India's greatest saints have
confirmed that one cannot eat meat and live a peaceful,
harmonious life. Man's appetite for meat inflicts
devastating harm on the earth itself, stripping its
precious forests to make way for pastures. The Tirukural
candidly states, 'How can he practice true compassion
who eats the flesh of an animal to fatten his own
the complete article:
Important please note:
am not an animal expert of any kind just your average
person who loves animals, all animals, and feels deeply
about the plight of many of our fellow creatures.
Neither am I a writer, or any other expert. Therefore
please keep in mind that the information included in
this website has been researched to the best of my
ability and any misinformation is quite by accident but
of course possible.
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other matters, please read