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But most of us do not eat meat in the same way/situation as the father and mother who eats their own child. So I think the consequences may be different.
I guess that the comparison with eating one’s own children is to suggest that perspective to us. The idea is that we don’t normally consider these acts—eating an animal and eating one’s children—to be equivalent, but isn’t that an arbitrary distinction that we are making? Animals are all someone’s children, after all.
I fall on the “bad karma” side of the argument personally. I don’t think it’s right view to distinguish between “valid” suffering in humans and “invalid” suffering in animals.
It’s not always about sutta’s. There are a few people here who like Thich Nhat Hanh’s brand of buddhism, and he uses a lot of material which he himself has translated, and which is often a slightly different take on things, such as the five Mindfulness Trainings as opposed to the precepts.
Yes, I think that’s a fair assessment. I think TNH shows us (as closely as anyone has) the heart of the teachings.
But I think you raise a really interesting point about Buddhism as compared with other major religions, particularly the Abrahamic ones. They can be very scripture-centric, which makes a lot of sense to me if like the Qur’an that scripture is an accurate representation of the original “word of God”. But the modern Bible is such a different book from the original that its authority is a bit of a puzzle to me.
When it comes to Buddhist scriptures, I don’t think authenticity operates in the same way. I personally don’t need to believe that they represent the exact words of the Buddha. I read them as interpretations, or as valid works in their own right, with as much authority as any book. Jack Kerouac and Gary Snyder are right up there with the Sutras as far as I’m concerned. But I know that’s not a very representative view, so I’m interested to see what others think.
I understand where you’re coming from, @DhammaDragon. I guess it’s somewhat inevitable, though not only with Buddhists. People assume Muslims won’t drink and will keep to the five prayers and so on, but many are quite lax. It can be similar to any statement of morality, like “I’m a vegetarian,” or “I don’t drive a car because of the emissions.” People can be quick to try and catch you out, or point out why you’re a hypocrite. I think it often comes from personal insecurities.
Generally, I don’t really tell people about my practice unless they’re people I’m close to and trust.
Headspace is a mobile app for meditation. It’s secular, but the creator Andy Puddicombe is an ordained monk in the Tibetan tradition, and the techniques he teaches are all derived from there. I really like it. It’s how I came to Buddhism in the first place. There are courses on many topics: health issues like anxiety/depression, and general qualities like kindness and patience. He teaches noting techniques, and also visualisation which I recognise as metta bhavana.
It’s subscription based, but has been well worth it for me.
I’m trying to get to the 90-day goal on the Headspace app. Sometimes I wonder if this is the right thing to do, as “goals” don’t seem to apply very well to meditation. But as @lobster once said here, the only bad meditation is the one we don’t do. So if goals help me to get on the cushion, then good. I think the same probably applies to this.
Whatever helps you. Best of luck!