Author Topic: Monk or rabbit?  (Read 12862 times)

Tammy

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Monk or rabbit?
« on: January 03, 2012, 03:42:29 PM »
This came out of dinner conversation:
Son : if a hungry monk run into a rabbit in a jungle, should the monk eat the rabbit (and survive) or let it go (and risk dying of hunger) ?
Dad : the monk should eat the rabbit because monk is a human being who is 'higher' than the rabbit
Mom : if monk has no choice, he should eat the rabbit with the motivation of survival to spread buddha's teaching.

What say you ??
Down with the BAN!!!

Poonlarp

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2012, 06:02:54 PM »
I support what the mom said.

Before Buddha Shakyamurni found the truth, he tried to starve himself assuming the path to enlightenment is to stand all the suffering, and treat your senses are empty. But Buddha didn't gain much understanding of life out of it, and later found that to find enlightenment, we need to use the middle way.

If the monk has no choice, and knowing that he is going to die and lose the chance to learn more Dharma and spread the Dharma this life, with the motivation of benefiting more beings in the future, for me I think it's acceptable for the monk to eat the only source of energy to stay alive that he has at that moment.

nagaseeker

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2012, 06:11:48 PM »
ok tammy ,

1) The monk run in to jungle ,not desert .

A jungle is an area of land in the tropics overgrown with dense vegetation.That means the monk can eat flowers , grass , mushroom or even the skin of the trees .

2) The monk is so hungry (i assume he is weak at that moment )and you are talking about rabbit which is not easy to catch~

3) The question come out from the Son which normally a dinner conversation will not start by children as now a day theres too many 'important' things like surfing the net , watch tv ,listen to music , go out with friends .So most of the time they will just quickly finish the dinner without any deep conversation...... :P

My guess is ----> the monk eventually found some mushroom near a river and continue to spread buddha's teaching after he filled up his stomach , the rabbit went home to its family , the son finished up his dinner in less than 8 minutes while the mom is still nagging to his dad about the latest Hermes bag that the dad promise ...


What say you ??

Mana

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2012, 06:49:29 PM »
no matter what, killing is killling, even Buddha whose previous life killed a person on a ship (who planned to kill everyone on the ship), still had to go to hell for a short while due to the killing, even though his motivation was very high because he saved the rest of the people on the ship from being killed.

therefore, the person who killed and ate the rabbit will certainly accrue the karma of killing, no matter how noble his motivation is.

moreover, a monk who killed the rabbit, his karma is heavier than a lay person who killed, because the monk held the vow of no killing while the lay person didn't. So if there are tremendous benefits of holding the vows, similarly there are tremendous demerits if one breaks the vows.

unless the monk is a very attained mahasiddha who has the power to kill and send the mind of the rabbit to pure land and that is another story, but under most normal circumstance, the normal rules applied.

Lawrence L

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2012, 08:01:22 PM »
This circumstance occured due to the karmic connection between the monk and the rabbit. Why the monk has to undergo such a struggle situation?
Whether there's a 'must', or even the question is it a 'must' to kill to survive, is because of the karma.

To me, I rather starve to death than to kill the rabbit to collect more bad karma. I don't wish the rabbit in the next life harms me in the same way. There will be no end in this story. Because Im not a Buddha, I couldn't live beyond the karma and I must follow the law of karma.

dondrup

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2012, 08:24:40 PM »
Son : if a hungry monk run into a rabbit in a jungle, should the monk eat the rabbit (and survive) or let it go (and risk dying of hunger) ?

Monks hold vows.  Among the vows is non killing.  The hungry monk should not eat the rabbit.  The right thing to do for the monk is to look for other food in the jungle.  There are many sources of food in the jungle.

If there is no food in the Jungle, the monk still should not kill rabbit for food.  No matter what motivation that he has even bodhichitta motivation, the monk will experience the karmic consequence of suffering death himself.

It is better for the monk to generate bodichitta motivation and then die than eating the rabbit.

Mom : if monk has no choice, he should eat the rabbit with the motivation of survival to spread buddha's teaching.

the monk will set a very bad example by eating the rabbit for his own survival.  How can he teach Dharma after killing the rabbit?


happysun

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2012, 11:25:53 PM »
Both also very important, to me if really no choice then I would the monk eat the rabbit and spread Dharma. Because what I know is if you are a monk and your vows are very clear when you eat the meat or animal, you are give them blessing actually. So see the large picture the monk can eat the rabbit to survive his life. But he need to spread dharma after he had been survived by this rabbit.

This question seem like egg and chicken which one you choose? egg first or chicken?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Tammy

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #7 on: January 04, 2012, 06:27:04 AM »

1) The monk run in to jungle ,not desert .

A jungle is an area of land in the tropics overgrown with dense vegetation.That means the monk can eat flowers , grass , mushroom or even the skin of the trees .

Nagaseeker,
you are being very specific with regards to the situation in which the monk and the rabbit met - ok I agree with you that the monk HAS choice of filling his stomach by eating the greens around him hence the question of eating the rabbit should not be raised at all!

For the sake of discussion (I really like to know what you think), what is your opinion if these two unfortunate souls met in a the middle of desert?
2) The monk is so hungry (i assume he is weak at that moment )and you are talking about rabbit which is not easy to catch~
Haha nagaseeker - ok ok no rabbit, let's just say it's a... tortoise!

Down with the BAN!!!

nagaseeker

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2012, 06:59:21 PM »

1) The monk run in to jungle ,not desert .

A jungle is an area of land in the tropics overgrown with dense vegetation.That means the monk can eat flowers , grass , mushroom or even the skin of the trees .

Nagaseeker,
you are being very specific with regards to the situation in which the monk and the rabbit met - ok I agree with you that the monk HAS choice of filling his stomach by eating the greens around him hence the question of eating the rabbit should not be raised at all!

For the sake of discussion (I really like to know what you think), what is your opinion if these two unfortunate souls met in a the middle of desert?
2) The monk is so hungry (i assume he is weak at that moment )and you are talking about rabbit which is not easy to catch~
Haha nagaseeker - ok ok no rabbit, let's just say it's a... tortoise!

ok tammy,i think it is all about motivation , the monk should eat the rabbit.....or tortoise ! no matters it turns out to bad karma .

Son : if a hungry monk run into a rabbit in a jungle, should the monk eat the rabbit (and survive) or let it go (and risk dying of hunger) ?

Monks hold vows.  Among the vows is non killing.  The hungry monk should not eat the rabbit.  The right thing to do for the monk is to look for other food in the jungle.  There are many sources of food in the jungle.

If there is no food in the Jungle, the monk still should not kill rabbit for food.  No matter what motivation that he has even bodhichitta motivation, the monk will experience the karmic consequence of suffering death himself.

It is better for the monk to generate bodichitta motivation and then die than eating the rabbit.

Mom : if monk has no choice, he should eat the rabbit with the motivation of survival to spread buddha's teaching.

the monk will set a very bad example by eating the rabbit for his own survival.  How can he teach Dharma after killing the rabbit?



Dondrup , if the monk choose not to eat the rabbit and eventually he die in the jungle , How can he continue to teach the dharma ? would he be collect more bad karma that he choose to end his live ? you see, to eat or not to eat the rabbit , both collect bad karma but which one is much more heavier ?i think is not to eat the rabbit n choose to die because the monk have higher purpose to continue his life while the rabbit can contribute its life to support the monk to teach dharma.

pgdharma

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2012, 02:29:06 PM »
I don’t think it is right for the monk to kill the rabbit for his own survival even though his motivation is pure as killing is killing. As a monk he has also broken his vow of not killing if he were to kill the rabbit and will experience the karma of killing. A living being is a living being irrespective of who is higher or lower.

The monk should not wait until he is starving before finding the excuse of killing the rabbit to sustain himself so that he can teach and spread the dharma. He should instead find some food from the forest which has rich resources like berries, mushroom, edible flowers and leaves, water etc.

Well if he is in a desert, maybe he can find dates around the oasis :D But in the first place where should he go there at all ???

negra orquida

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2012, 04:11:27 PM »
I guess the original intention of the question here is more of "if a monk had no other sources of food, and there's a live and edible animal in front of him, should he kill and eat the animal to ensure his own survival?"

Many angles to consider here...

On one hand, "the monk holds the vow of non-killing".  Killing the rabbit for food = killing, however starving yourself to death is also killing isn't it?  Which is why on the other hand, Buddha preached the middle way.

"Killing and eating the animal to ensure the monk's survival so that he may spread the Dharma" some think this is not a good reason, the monk should generate boddhichitta and die rather than kill and eat the animal.  Some say, this could be viewed as a blessing for the animal, for who knows maybe the monk eventually became a Buddha as a result of getting the sustenance he needed and was able to proceed with his intense meditation and purification practices? Consider the pearl offerings which came from once live oysters and silk khatas which came from once-uncooked silk worms.

Another interesting bit to chew on and remember is that Hitler was a vegetarian.

This topic reminds me of a question posed to me by a friend.  He asked me (I'm vegetarian), "Since the purpose of vegetarianism is to reduce the killing of animals, lets say there is some sort of farm which rears animals (e.g. cows, chickens) that are old, and the animals die naturally, would you, as a vegetarian, eat the meat of such animal?"

What say you?   ;)

kurava

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2012, 03:51:08 AM »
If the monk has a choice not to kill for food, he should do so by looking for wild vegetables, fruits or nuts if he does not wish to break his vows.

However, whatever the monk decides ( to kill or not to kill) he will have to deal with the consequences of his decision and action. That is the essence of Buddha's teachings - understanding the law of cause and effect, we make our own decision and we face the results of our actions,.

nagaseeker

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2012, 04:13:16 AM »
If the monk has a choice not to kill for food, he should do so by looking for wild vegetables, fruits or nuts if he does not wish to break his vows.

However, whatever the monk decides ( to kill or not to kill) he will have to deal with the consequences of his decision and action. That is the essence of Buddha's teachings - understanding the law of cause and effect, we make our own decision and we face the results of our actions,.

the monks will have to deal with the consequences of his decision and action which is
a) to kill the rabbit n survive

   a.1) to kill the rabbit - create bad karma
   a.2) survive ( with motivation that want to teach dharma continuously ) - gain tremendous merits

Does  gaining the merits with good motivation overcome the bad karma of killing ?

b) not to kill the rabbit and choose to die

    b.1) not to kill the rabbit - a little bit of good karma
    b.2) die - did not gain any merits

Does sacrifice his own life to save a rabbit worth than giving teaching to others/ self practice for the purpose of attainment or even enlighten to be become buddha ? do you think it is worth it ?

KhedrubGyatso

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2012, 04:09:50 AM »
In dealing with questions which requires one to make a choice it always becomes a dilemma. This is the nature of samsara. No matter how good our intentions are or how much we try to balance the pros and cons , there is no perfect solution or a win win situation.
It is said that the day we are born into this world , we already cause harm !  Because we are are born from impure causes, we will have to live in an imperfect world whereby no matter how nice and kind we are, we will have enemies; no matter how careful we are, even living in a cave away from it all, we will have to endure problems; and no matter how conscientious we are we will have to make decisions which will create issues for others. It is always the case of the lesser of the two evils in samsara.
Actually if we check the opinions and views of all the contributors to this forum , we will come to the conclusion that the arguments for and against any subject will go on forever without satisfying any party although its good tonic for our mind ! This is due to the inter dependence of all things . When it comes to happiness or suffering, there is no difference between monk and rabbit .
Buddhism's 'middle way ' philosophy, can be a big help in guiding us out of this dilemma by accepting that life is a compromise as long as we hold worldly views and habits. If we do not like to be  compromised  , if we want to live in a perfect world  ,  the only way is to  renounce this world of desire through exercising the Buddhist  option by training our mind in achieving renunciation or better still bodhicitta.
If the monk had developed such a mind, whether he kills the rabbit or not for whatever reasons , there will be no karmic repercussions. This is the essential point. For us ordinary people, or even monks who have no such attainments, its suffering whatever we do or not do.

Tammy

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Re: Monk or rabbit?
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2012, 08:50:30 AM »

Another interesting bit to chew on and remember is that Hitler was a vegetarian.

This topic reminds me of a question posed to me by a friend.  He asked me (I'm vegetarian), "Since the purpose of vegetarianism is to reduce the killing of animals, lets say there is some sort of farm which rears animals (e.g. cows, chickens) that are old, and the animals die naturally, would you, as a vegetarian, eat the meat of such animal?"

What say you?   ;)

I know what you are driving at -> if it does not involve killing, it is OK to eat meat?
Well, i would think it is STILL NOT OK to eat those dead animal's meat.
Out of respect for fellow sentient beings, we would want to given them a proper burial, other than in our stomach..
Moreover, if we start eating dead animal's meat, we are starting a habit of meal eating, so we will convince ourselves that : eating a small animal is OK...
 
Down with the BAN!!!