Every soul is responsible and accountable for our own acts. All living beings are subject to the law of Karma. (Those do not believe please explain the difference between rich and poor, happy and unhappy, some soul with the human body and some are with the animal body? ).
Newton’s 3rd law states – for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. This is a science and one may not believe it is up one’s wisdom and understanding. Can we force people to believe in any of the scientific natural laws? No.
We all living beings are the creation of nature. All are governed by some laws. These laws are called laws of Karma. Our Karma is the determinant of the kind of body a soul gets and kind of pain and pleasure the soul encounters. Every soul is not only responsible for its own acts i.e. Karma but can’t escape from its fruits.
This is a pure science irrespective of anyone believes it or not. Religion has nothing to do with it. Every religion explains this science of nature to the extent they understand. However, every religion has touched upon this subject and quite in detail.
Nonviolence is the basis of every religion though Jainism has quite a detailed definition of violence. Jainism believes even hurting someone with our words is also a form of violence. Everyone knows Jainism considers eating root vegetables is also violence only because it believes in a minute form of nonviolence. We all by now know and even have seen small microscopic lives in these root vegetables.
Killing is violence. Killing a living being attracts a very severe form of Karma to the soul. Whether one believes it or not is a matter of individual freedom.
Suppose you do not believe. Fine. Just visit the abattoir where animals are getting killed for their meat to ends up on your plate. If you do not have time to visit, please read this article – Journey through hell.
The author writes;
Everyday, around 30 trucks crammed with cattle cross the border into the city and find their way to the Deonar slaughterhouse. The animals— starving, terrified and often mutilated—have stood in their blood, urine, and dung for 36 hours or more. Their tails are sometimes cut off to make space in the truck and their eyes often sewn up. At the slaughterhouse, death can come as a release. This is the meat that ends up on your plate.
Additional reading: Maneka Gandhi’s book: Heads & Tails
They all are living being and are suffering their bad Karma but don’t forget this science of Karma leaves none. It’s a science and no one can interfere and manipulate.
Years ago Maneka Gandhi had written an article about how emotions of fear and cry of animals’ just before killing impact the meat eaters’ mindset negatively.
Those who are following any religion, they may like to know the following facts:
- “It is the principle of the pure in heart never to injure others, even when they themselves have been hatefully injured.”
- “If a man inflicts sorrow on another in the morning, sorrow will come to him unbidden in the afternoon.
- “What is virtuous conduct? It is never destroying life, for killing leads to every other sin.
(Dr Abdul Kalam always used to quote from this script and he was also a vegetarian yet not Jain)
- “One should never do that to another which one regards as injurious to one’s own self. This, in brief, is the rule of dharma. Yielding to desire and acting differently, one becomes guilty of adharma.”
- “Ahimsa is the highest dharma. Ahimsa is the best tapas. Ahimsa is the greatest gift. Ahimsa is the highest self-control. Ahimsa is the highest sacrifice. Ahimsa is the highest power. Ahimsa is the highest friend. Ahimsa is the highest truth. Ahimsa is the highest teaching.”
- “Without doing injury to living things, flesh cannot be had anywhere; and the killing of living beings is not conducive to heaven; hence eating of flesh should be avoided.”
- “Nonviolence, truthfulness, nonstealing, purity, sense control–this, in brief, says Manu, is the dharma of all the four castes.”
“Ahimsa is not causing pain to any living being at any time through the actions of one’s mind, speech or body.”
Chandogya Upanishad: “ It bars, violence against “all creatures” (sarva–bhuta) and the practitioner of Ahimsa is said to escape from the cycle of reincarnation.”
“Ahimsa is a duty for all the four classes (Varnas) of society. The texts declare that Ahimsa should be extended to all forms of life. They also give attention to the protection of plants.”
“ Bhagavad Gita includes Ahimsa in the twenty virtues necessary for attaining Dnyana (knowledge (of Self)). The shloka (verse) is as follows :
aacharya–upaasanaam–shoucham sthairyam aatma–vinigraham (Gita 13.7) (2)
Thus non-injury to others (physical or mental) is prescribed as virtue
in PERSONAL conduct.”
“ Prohibit violence against innocent animals.”
In his article Vegetarianism in the Bible author, Denis Giron discusses the view of Christianity on the subject.
What Brother Initiate Zamir Elahi, UK writes in his article Islam and Vegetarianism is also worth reading.
Kabirji was very vocal about his views on meat consumption.
कबीर-माँस माँस सब एक है, मुरगी हिरनी गाय।
आँखि देखि नर खात है, ते नर नरकहिं जाय।।
कबीर-यह कूकर को भक्ष है, मनुष देह क्यों खाय।
मुखमें आमिख मेलिके, नरक परंगे जाय।।
Meat may be from a cow, a deer or a chicken, those who consume meat are destined to hell. Those who eat meat unknowingly (e.g. unknowingly one consumed meat at their relatives place because of not being told or considering it to be a vegetable) they do not incur sin but in future, they must remain very vigilant. Those who knowingly consume meat incur sin. This meat is dog food and is prohibited for a human being.
In 1582, Emperor Akbar invited Hiravijaya Suri to explain him the principles of Jainism. He first discussed the various aspects of religion and philosophy with Abul Fazal and the later with Akbar. Akbar was so much influenced by the religion of non-violence preached by the Jain monk that he became vegetarian most of the days, prohibited slaughter of animals and birds, released prisoners and gave up fishing and hunting which were his favourite pastime. Out of respect for Jainism, Akbar declared firmans (royal decree) for Amari Ghosana banning the killing of animals during the Jain festivals of Paryusana and Mahavir Jayanti.
People are choosing vegetarian food for different reasons; Here is a list of 15 international celebrities turned Vegan. Indian readers would be happy to find Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan, Shahdi Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Mallika Sherawat, Vidya Balan and Kangana Ranaut among the Bollywood celebrities who have turned vegan for various reasons. More here.
Dr. John McDougall writes;
Steve Jobs lived more than 30 years after developing pancreatic cancer thanks to his vegan diet.
From King Akbar to Amitabh Bachchan to Aamir Khan to Steve Jobs none of them were/are Jains.
Yet I still believe people are free to choose their food and state should interfere.
“If slaughterhouses had glass walls, we would all be vegetarian.”
― Paul McCartney
(Oprah has already done this in this video Inside the slaughter House for those who dare to see. For your food only !!! )
Click to download book: Jainism – Non-Violence & Vegetarianism.