Sunday, November 22, 2015

Does Sanathana Dharma support eating meat? (Part-1)

Excerpted from Mahabharata, Anusasana Parva – chapter 113.



Yudhishthira said, Abstention from injury, the observance of the Vedic ritual, meditation, subjugation of the senses, penances, and obedient services rendered to the preceptors, which amongst these is fraught with the greatest merit with respect to a personVrihaspati said, All these six are fraught with merit. They are different doors of piety. I shall discourse upon them presently. Do thou listen to them, O chief of the BharatasI shall tell thee what constitutes the highest good of a human being. That man who practises the Dharma of universal compassion achieves his highest good.

That man who keeps under control the three faults, viz, lust, wrath, and cupidity, by throwing them upon all creatures and practises the virtue of compassion, attains to success. He who, from motives of his own happiness, slays other harmless creatures with the rod of chastisement, never attains to happiness, in the next world

That man who regards all creatures as his own self, and behaves towards them as towards his own self, laying aside the rod of chastisement and completely subjugating his wrath, succeeds in attaining to happiness. The very deities, who are desirous of a fixed abode, become stupefied in ascertaining the track of that person who constitutes himself the soul of all creatures and looks upon them all as his own self, for such a person leaves no track behind. One should never do that to another which one regards as injurious to one's own self. This, in brief, is the rule of RighteousnessOne by acting in a different way by yielding to desire, becomes guilty of unrighteousness. In refusals and gifts, in happiness and misery, in the agreeable, and the disagreeable, one should judge of their effects by a reference to one's own self. When One injures another, the injured turns round and injures the injurer. Similarly, when one cherishes another, that other cherishes the cherisher.

One should frame one's rule of conduct according to this. I have told thee what Righteousness is even by this subtile way' Vaisampayana continued, The preceptor of the deities, possessed of great intelligence, having said this unto king Yudhishthira the just, ascended upwards for proceeding to Heaven, before our eyes.


**************

Excerpted from Mahabharata, Anusasana Parva – chapter 114.


Bhishma tells Yudhishtra:-

A person becomes guilty of injury through acts, words and thoughts. Discarding it mentally at the outset, one should next discard in word and thought. He who, according to this rule, abstains from eating meat is said to be cleansed in a threefold way. It is heard that utterers of Brahma ascribe to three causes the sin of eating meat. That sin may attach to the mind, to words, and to acts. It is for this reason that men of wisdom who are endued with penances refrain from eating meat. Listen to me, O king, as I tell thee what the faults are that attach to the eating of meat. The meat of other animals is like the flesh of one's son. That foolish person, stupefied by folly, who eats meat is regarded as the vilest of human beings.

The union of father and mother produces an offspring. After the same manner, the cruelty that a helpless and sinful wretch commits, produces its progeny of repeated rebirths fraught with great misery. As the tongue is the cause of the knowledge or sensation of taste, so the scriptures declare, attachment proceeds from tasteWell-dressed, cooked with salt or without salt, meat, in whatever form one may take it, gradually attracts the mind and enslaves it. How will those foolish men that subsist upon meat succeed in listening to the sweet music of celestial drums and cymbals and lyres and harps? 


They who eat meat applaud it highly, suffering themselves to be stupefied by its taste which they pronounce to be something inconceivable, undescribable, and unimaginableSuch praise even of meat is fraught with demeritIn former days, many righteous men, by giving the flesh of their own bodies, protected the flesh of other creatures and as a consequence of such acts of merit, have proceeded to heaven. In this way, O monarch the Religion of compassion is surrounded by four considerations. I have thus declared to thee that DHARMA which comprises all other Dharma within it.

*********************

Excerpted from Mahabharata, Anusasana Parva – chapter 115.


Bhishma continued:-

“The merit acquired by that person, O Yudhishthira, who, with the steadiness of a vow, adores the deities every month in horse-sacrifices, is equal to his who discards honey and meat. The seven celestial Rishis, the Valakhilyas, and those Rishis who drink the rays of the sun, endued with great wisdom, applaud abstention from meatThe Self-born Manu has said that that man who does not eat meat, or who does not slay living creatures, or who does not cause them to be slain, is a friend of all creaturesSuch a man is incapable of being oppressed by any creature. He enjoys the confidence of all living beings. He always enjoys, besides, the approbation and commendation of the righteous. The righteous-souled Narada has said that that man who wishes to increase his own flesh by eating the flesh of other creatures, meets with calamityVrihaspati has said that that man who abstains from honey and meat acquires the merit of gifts and sacrifices and penances. In my estimation, these two persons are equal, viz, he who adores the deities every month in a horse-sacrifice for a space of hundred years and he who abstains from honey and meat.

In consequence of abstention from meat one comes to be regarded as one who always adores the deities in sacrifices, or as one who always makes gifts to others, or as one who always undergoes the severest austerities. That man who having eaten meat gives it up afterwards, acquires merit by such an act that is so great that a study of all the Vedas or a performance, O Bharata, of all the sacrifices, cannot bestow its like. It is exceedingly difficult to give up meat after one has become acquainted with its taste. Indeed, it is exceedingly difficult for such a person to observe the high vow of abstention from meat, a vow that assures every creature by dispelling all fear. That learned person who giveth to all living creatures the Dakshina of complete assurance comes to be regarded, without doubt, as the giver of life-breaths in this worldEven this is the high religion which men of wisdom applaud.

The life-breaths of other creatures are as dear to them as those of one's to one's own self. Men endued with intelligence and cleansed souls should always behave towards other creatures after the manner of that behaviour which they like others to observe towards themselves. It is seen that even those men who are possessed of learning and who seek to achieve the highest good in the form of Emancipation, are not free from the fear of death. What need there be said of those innocent and healthy creatures endued with love of life, when they are sought to be slain by sinful wretches subsisting by slaughter?
For this reason, O monarch, know that the discarding of meat is the highest refuge of religion, of heaven, and of happiness

Abstention from injury is the highest Dharma. 
It is, again, the highest penance. 
It is also the highest truths from which all duty proceeds. 
Flesh cannot be had from grass or wood or stone. 

Unless a living creature is slain, it cannot be had. Hence is the fault in eating flesh. 

The deities who subsist upon SwahaSwadha, and nectar, are devoted to truth and sincerity. Those persons, however, who are for gratifying the sensation of taste, should be known as Rakshasas wedded to the attribute of Passion

That man who abstains from meat, is never put in fear, O king, by any creature, wherever he may be, viz, in terrible wildernesses or inaccessible fastnesses, by day or by night, or at the two twilights, in the open squares of towns or in assemblies of men, from upraised weapons or in places where there is great fright from wild animals or snakes.

All creatures seek his protection. He is an object of confidence with all creatures. 
He never causes any anxiety in others, and himself has never to become anxious. 
If there were nobody who ate flesh there would then be nobody to kill living creatures. 

The man who kills living creatures kill them for the sake of the person who eats flesh. 
If flesh were regarded as inedible, there would then be no slaughter of living creatures. 

It is for the sake of the eater that the slaughter of living creatures goes on in the world. Since, O thou of great splendour, the period of life is shortened of persons who slaughter living creatures or cause them to be slaughtered, it is clear that the person who wishes his own good should give up meat entirely. Those fierce persons who are engaged in slaughter of living creatures, never find protectors when they are in need. Such persons should always be molested and persecuted even as beasts of prey.

Through cupidity or stupefaction of the understanding, for the sake of strength and energy, or through association with the sinful, the disposition manifests itself in men for sinning. That man who seeks to increase his own flesh by eating the flesh of others, has to live in this world in great anxiety and after death has to take birth in indifferent races and families. 

High Rishis devoted to the observance of vows and self-restraint have said that abstention from meat is worthy of every praise, productive of fame and Heaven, and a great propitiation by itself. This I heard in days of old, O son of Kunti, from Markandeya when that Rishi discoursed on the demerits of eating flesh. 

He who eats the flesh of animals that are desirous of living but that have been killed by either himself or others, incurs the sin that attaches to the slaughter for his this act of cruelty. 

He who purchases flesh slays living creatures through his wealth. 

He who eats flesh slays living creatures through such act of eating. 

He who binds or seizes and actually kills living creatures is the slaughterer. 

Those are the three kinds of slaughter, each of these three acts being so. 
He who does not himself eat flesh but approves of an act of slaughter becomes stained with the sin of slaughter.

********************************

Excerpted from Mahabharata, Anusasana Parva – chapter 116



 Yudhishthira said, 

Alas, those cruel men, who, discarding diverse kinds of food, covet only flesh, are really like great RakshasasAlas, they do not relish diverse kinds of cakes and diverse sorts of potherbs and various species of Khanda with juicy flavour so much as they do flesh! My understanding, for this reason, becomes stupefied in this matter. I think, when such is the case, that, there is nothing which can compare with flesh in the matter of taste, I desire, therefore, O puissant one, to hear what the merits are of abstention from flesh, and the demerits that attach to the eating of flesh, O chief of Bharata's race. Thou art conversant with every duty. Do thou discourse to me in full agreeably to the ordinances on duty, on this subject. Do tell me what, indeed, is edible and what inedible.

Tell me, O grandsire, what is flesh, of what substances it is, the merits that attach to abstention from it, and what the demerits are that attach to the eating of flesh' Bhishma said, It is even so, O mighty-armed one, as thou sayest. There is nothing on earth that is superior to flesh in point of taste. There is nothing that is more beneficial then flesh to persons that are lean, or weak, or afflicted with disease, or addicted to sexual congress or exhausted with travel. Flesh speedily increases strength. It produces great development. There is no food, O scorcher of foes, that is superior to fleshBut, O delighter of the Kurus, the merits are great that attach to men that abstain from it. Listen to me as I discourse to thee on it. That man who wished to increase his own flesh by the flesh of another living creature is such that there is none meaner and more cruel than he.

In this world there is nothing that is dearer to a creature than his life. Hence instead of taking that valuable possession, one should show compassion to the lives of others as one does to one's own lifeWithout doubt, O son, flesh has its origin in the vital seed. There is great demerit attaching to its eating, as, indeed, there is merit in abstaining from it. One does not, however, incur any fault by eating flesh sanctified according to the ordinances of the VedasThe audition is heard that animals were created for sacrifice. They who eat flesh in any other way are said to follow the Rakshasa practice. Listen to me as I tell thee what the ordinance is that has been laid down for the KshatriyasThey do not incur any fault by eating flesh that has been acquired by expenditure of prowess. All deer of the wilderness were dedicated to the deities and the Pitris in days of old, O king, by Agastya.

Hence, the hunting of deer is not censured. There can be no hunting without risk of one's own life. There is equality of risk between the slayer and the slain. Either the animal is killed or it kills the hunter. Hence, O Bharata, even royal sages betake themselves to the practice of hunting. By such conduct they do not become stained with sin. Indeed, the practice is not regarded as sinful. There is nothing, O delighter of the Kurus, that is equal in point of merit, either here or hereafter, to the practice of compassion to all living creaturesThe man of compassion has no fear. Those harmless men that are endued with compassion have both this world and the next.

Persons conversant with duty say that that DHARMA is worthy of being called Dharma which has abstention from cruelty for its indication. The man of cleansed soul should do only such acts as have compassion for their soul. That flesh which is dedicated in sacrifices performed in honour of the deities and the Pitris is called Havi and, as such, is worthy of being eaten. That man who is devoted to compassion and who behaves with compassion towards others, has no fear to entertain from any creature. It is heard that all creatures abstain from causing any fear unto such a creature. Whether he is wounded or fallen down or prostrated or weakened or bruised, in whatever state he may be, all creatures protect him. Indeed, they do so, under all circumstances, whether he is on even or uneven ground. Neither snakes nor wild animals, neither Pisachas norRakshasas, ever slay him. When circumstances of fear arise, he becomes freed from fear who frees others from situations of fear. There has never been, nor will there ever be, a gift that is superior to the gift of life.

It is certain that there is nothing dearer to oneself than one's life. Death, O Bharata, is a calamity or evil unto all creatures. When the time comes for Death, a trembling of the whole frame is seen in all creatures. Enduring birth in the uterus, decrepitude and afflictions of diverse kinds, in this ocean of the world, living creatures may be seen to be continually going forward and coming back. Every creature is afflicted by death. While dwelling in the uterus, all creatures are cooked in the fluid juices that are alkaline and sour and bitter, of urine and phlegm and faeces, juices that produce painful sensations and are difficult to bear. There in the uterus, they have to dwell in a state of helplessness and are even repeatedly torn and pierced. They that are covetous of meat are seen to be repeatedly cooked in the uterus in such a state of helplessness. Attaining to diverse kinds of birth, they are cooked in the hell called KumbhipakaThey are assailed and slain, and in this way have to travel repeatedly.

There is nothing so dear to one as one's life when one comes to this world. Hence, a person of cleansed soul should be compassionate to all living creatures. That man, O king, who abstains from every kind of meat from his birth, without doubt, acquires a large space in Heaven, They who eat the flesh of animals who are desirous of life, are themselves eaten by the animals they eat, without doubt. Even this is my opinion. Since he hath eaten me, I shall eat him in return, even this, O Bharata, constitutes the character as Mansa of Mansa The slayer is always slain. After him the eater meets with the same fate. He who acts with hostility towards another in this life becomes the victim of similar acts done by that other. Whatever acts one does in whatever bodies, one has to suffer the consequences thereof in those bodies

Abstention from cruelty is the highest Dharma.
Abstention from cruelty is the highest self-control. 
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 puissance. 
Abstention from cruelty is the highest friend. Abstention from cruelty is the highest happiness. 
Abstention from cruelty is the highest truth. 
Abstention from cruelty is the highest Sruti

Gifts made in all sacrifices, ablutions performed in all sacred waters, and the merit that one acquires from making all kinds of gifts mentioned in the scriptures, all these do not come up to abstention from cruelty in point of the merit that attaches to it.

The penances of a man that abstains from cruelty are inexhaustible. The man that abstains from cruelty is regarded as always performing sacrifices. The man that abstains from cruelty is the father and mother of all creaturesEven these, O chief of Kuru's race, are some of the merits of abstention from cruelty. Altogether, the merits that attach to it are so many that they are incapable of being exhausted even if one were to speak for a hundred years.


******************

Related articles:-

(1) Bheeshma upholds killing animals in yajnas and for Pitrs in the above passages. How it must be viewed is discussed in this article and its comment section:- Animal sacrifice – how Veda Dharma views it?


(2) There was a time sage Vishwamitra ate dog’s meat. The intricacies in that episode are discussed in this article:- What is ‘Aryan’ morality? – as told by a Chandala to Vishwamitra.




51 comments:

Jay Sekhar said...

Bhishma is talking about sacrificing eating meat. Agreed, he clearly is arguing about merits of giving up eating meat. Agreed, he is trying very hard to judge meat eaters as sinners, but keeps falling short of chastising meat eaters from the get go (perhaps because he himself ate meat in Yudhistra's Rajasuya Yagnya). The worst expletives he used were on those who do not eat meat NOT offered in a vedic yagnya first.

If anything, this post proves beyond reasonable doubt that human, by very nature, is a meat eater; and thus exposes the false conclusions reached in post "Comparison between meat eating man and meat eating animal!". Bhishma here is urging Yudhristra (& us also let's say) to rise above our meat eating nature and sacrifice it for further benefits we may obtain from them.

Why vedic religion (& it's modern derivative, Hinduism) DOES NOT prohibit meat eating is evidenced by what Bhishma himself said - "One does not, however, incur any fault by eating flesh sanctified according to the ordinances of the Vedas." This is how Lord Rama ate meat even when he was in the forest, as described by Valmiki. Bhishma was an incarnation of one of 8 Vasus, and his condemnation of meat eaters is not true. If it had been, neither would Lord Rama nor Krishana or Agastya or he himself eat meat in their lives. We know that they did, so these stanzas from MB must be Jainic interpolations at a later date. If we still choose to believe these stanzas, then instead of what Bhishma said, one should rather choose to consider and adopt what Lord Rama did, including fulfilling all of one's responsibilities and eating meat.

Siddha artha said...

Mr jay sekhar, you seem to place yourself above bhishma. You seem to mimic the likes of bloggers like ajit vadakayil and sharmalan thevar, both of whom argue for meat eating. They are just opinion makers and not authoritative scholars to decide what is ordained by scriptures and what is not.

//(perhaps because he himself ate meat in Yudhistra's Rajasuya Yagnya).//

The meat eaten as a prasada from the remains of vedic yagna is not considered sinful. Such yagnas are not allowed in kali yuga, as is evidenced from the biographies of sri sankara, ramanujacharya and Madhvacharya, the prime sources of authorities for vedic thought.

// this post proves beyond reasonable doubt that human, by very nature, is a meat eater//

No,this post proves that human is not a meat eater alone. He is omnivorous, i.e capable of eating both meat and plant based diets.

//"One does not, however, incur any fault by eating flesh sanctified according to the ordinances of the Vedas."//

This is how meat should be eaten.Note the words -'sanctified'. Who sanctifies ? the vedic yagna.Are such things allowed in kali ? NO. So no meat eating business today.

//Bhishma was an incarnation of one of 8 Vasus, and his condemnation of meat eaters is not true.//
Who are you to decide whether bhishma lied or spoke the truth ? I smell some Indology here.

//We know that they did, so these stanzas from MB must be Jainic interpolations at a later date//
Claim of Jainic interpolations is absurd. Even today, brahmins of south India are vegetarian. If , as you say, meat eating was allowed, then they would have continued it till date, as one who has started meat eating cannot easily abandon the habit.
Brahmins at no point in history were mentally weak to have subjugated to jain/buddhist influences. In fact, brahmins and jains were at loggerheads and were philosophical enemies.

Also remember that jainism and buddhism were propagated by rishabhadeva (predominantly) and Buddha (Maha Vishnu) respectively, and gained prominence only in kali yuga. So these philosophies are offshoots of sanatana dharma only, and not the other way round, as you seem to claim.

Also read this post-http://jayasreesaranathan.blogspot.com/2012/10/what-are-vedic-yajnas-guest-post-by-r.html and look for the para. where he says about the quantity of meat eaten after these yagnas.

Jay Sekhar said...

@ Siddha artha, I appreciate your reply, but it lacks evidence from vedas/puranas to support your conclusions, which thus are only your misconceptions. It is clear that you did not read Vyasa Mahabharata or Yajur Veda, Let me show the fallacy in your arguments:

//Mr jay sekhar, you seem to place yourself above bhishma…// & //Who are you to decide whether bhishma lied or spoke the truth ?// - If you read all of my post, you will see that I placed Lord Rama above Bhishma. If you read my post properly, you would have noticed that I clearly called our Bhishma’s integrity into question because he himself was a meat eater in Vyasa’s Mahabharata. If you don’t believe me then, read Vyasa Mahabharata and learn. Reason for calling his integrity into question is because even though Bhishma acknowledges it is ok to eat meat offered in a Yagnya first, he later says it is better to not eat meat. My own opinion is this – Bhishma is a devoted adherent to Sanatana Dharma. As such, I refuse to believe that he lacked integrity by preaching what he himself did not practice. And that is exactly why I honestly believe that this section of Anushaasana parva was a later Jainic interpolation, since Jains brought the concept of not injuring ANY living being, incl. insects.

//This is how meat should be eaten.Note the words -'sanctified'. Who sanctifies ? the vedic yagna.Are such things allowed in kali ? NO. So no meat eating business today.// - Some vedic yagnyas such as Aswamedha Yagnya and other ‘..medha’ yagnyas are not possible today. And remaining yagnyaas which are still being performed today are NOT vedic (they do not confirm to Yajur veda, which specifically calls for animal sacrifice) at all! Our ancient rishis knew about this future age of untruth, incl. Sri Krishna. Which is why they gave us Abhishekams and Vrathas as other equally beneficial methods of worshipping gods in this kali Yuga. Given this state, especially because you can no longer do a Yagnya and sacrifice meat in such yagnya today (until mid- 20th century this was possible in certain places in India), sanctification of the meat can still be done as an offering to god before you have it. Patram, Pushpam, Phalam, Toyam yo me bhaktya prayachhati… in that sloka Sri Krishna clearly states that we can offer him/god anything that we have. Have you heard the legend of Thinnappa (aka Kannappa) who offered meat to god? Finally, I should have elaborated this in my previous post, but Lord Rama himself in one instance in Valmiki Ramayana, eats cooked meat without offering in a yagnya during his forest stay & Valmiki also describes how Lakshamana cooked it. Despite it, he was adjudged as one who never left dharma. Sanctification can be done using achamana & naivedya mantras also before you eat it. These practices are 100% vedic. So, you are incorrect, meat can still be eaten today under vedic lifestyle!

Jay Sekhar said...

@ Siddha artha - // Even today, brahmins of south India are vegetarian. If , as you say, meat eating was allowed, then they would have continued it till date, as one who has started meat eating cannot easily abandon the habit. // - Not just South India and not just Brahmins. Brahmins or north (except Kashmiri Pandits) and Ksatriyas of North also do not eat meat today. Listen to the reason why they are vegetarian today (I couldn’t find explicit evidence of this in Vyasa MB, but vedic purohits told me this), after MB war, based on advice from Bhishma, Yudhistra (emperor of the world at that time), passed law prohibiting dwija jaati people (Brahmin, Kshatriya & Vaisya occupational folk) from eating meat, since he believed that such a large scale Armageddon of a war happened due to extreme temper & rage in men, & eating meat, he believed, was a contributing factor to such a state. He wanted to prevent this from ever happening, and thus he passed the law prohibiting meat eating by these people unless it was a vedic yagnya offering. Since then we stopped eating meat. That was around 5,100 B.C. according to our panchaangs. Much later, Jainism took root, and even though Kuru empire was long gone, the habit remained in us thus.
//Also remember that jainism and buddhism were propagated by rishabhadeva (predominantly) and Buddha (Maha Vishnu) respectively// - Rishabadeva is a non-entity in Vedic lore, accordingly he is neither an important vedic persona nor someone to be revered in puranas. The Buddha avatar of Vishnu is not Buddha of Buddhism (which is why I stated you clearly have no knowledge of our puranas/vedas). Vishnu avatar Buddha was born in Ikshvaaku line of kings & much much before and unrelated to Magadha line in which Gautama Siddharta was born. Even the Buddhist text AmaraKosa clearly mentions two buddhas, one an avatar of Vishnu born long before the human born Guatama buddha. Buddha clearly called for discarding of vedas and vedic lifestyle. Thus, neither Jainism nor Gautama Buddha Buddhism are thus dharmic per Sanatana Dharma.

//Brahmins at no point in history were mentally weak to have subjugated to jain/buddhist influences…// -They were. Which is why Jainism and Buddhism took such a strong hold in India & which is why they still exist today. Which is why Adi Sankanacharya had to go around the country and re-converted kings from buddhic beliefs back to vedic beliefs.

jayasree said...

Mr Jay Sekher,

Please quote the verse from Valmiki Ramayana for you wrote - //This is how Lord Rama ate meat even when he was in the forest, as described by Valmiki.//

jayasree said...

The core teaching of Sanathana Dharma is Ahimsa - Ahimsa paramo dharma. It can not be attained by killing a life to satiate one's tongue or stomach. The core principle of Sanathana Dharma is Karma theory. Do something to someone; you reap the effect of it. Karma theory is the core one because one gets into the cycle of rebirth with no scope for release only due to karma theory. Therefore one must know what to do and what not to do. One must know the path of Dharma and the path of Adharma so that one can discard the path of adharma and follow the path of dharma and ultimately overcome samsara / the cycle of rebirth and attain moksha. This is the exact query of Yudhistitra in the excerpted passages from MB.

He asks in chapter 112 to Brihaspathi

//adharmasya gatir brahman kathitā me tvayānagha
dharmasya tu gatiṃ śrotum icchāmi vadatāṃ vara//

Brihaspathi's reply is now added in the above blog in the beginning. It forms the 113rd chapter in the English translation. Readers please read the first part of the above blog to know what Brihaspathi tells as the path of Dharma as opposed to the path of Adharma.

Since every action begets an equal and opposite action, abstention from meat is suggested as paramount; to quote Brihaspathi from the excerpted passage, "When One injures another, the injured turns round and injures the injurer."

This is echoed by Bhishma in chapter 116 as "Since he hath eaten me, I shall eat him in return". By this karma theory one who eats an animal will be eaten by that animal and the cycle goes on forever. The three types of sinners involved in meat will get the their portion of retribution for killing the animal.

In chapter 114 (quoted in the blog), Bhishma identifies thought, word and action as three sources of injury. He adds meat eating as the 4th one (in addition to these three) as causing injury to oneself (which is called sin). The core teaching of Sanathana Dharma is compassion which is surrounded by these four issues. This Dharma encompasses all the other Dharma. Therefore it is not only necessary that one guards against what one thinks, speaks and acts but also whether one does injury to another life for growing one's own life.

Compassion is paramount as it is what is embodied in Paramatman or Brahman or God.If the aim of Atman is to become one with Paramatman, it goes without saying that Atman must become compassion embodied.

By all this it is conveyed that one who wants to rise to the level of Paramatman, will have to give up meat and be compassionate to all beings. (Vaadina payiraik kaNda pothellam vaadinen - Vallalaar). Others need not be so. Sanathana Dharma does tell everything under the sun and also the pros and cons of those things. It is upto one to choose. As choosers we are responsible for what we do. By what we do, we are determining what we we are going to get in future.

Siddha artha said...

// I clearly called our Bhishma’s integrity into question//
//My own opinion is this – Bhishma is a devoted adherent to Sanatana Dharma. As such, I refuse to believe that he lacked integrity by preaching what he himself did not practice.//

One's own personal opinions lead to misunderstandings. Vedic scriptures are not simply story books to be read and understood by oneself. the embedded meanings have to be extracted by association with a qualified guru of some ancient lineage and reputation who have preserved vedas and other scriptures for centuries , without whom you would not have had a chance to even glance at the verses that 'seem' to support your side. Sometimes some verses appear to be contradictory, which has to be resolved in the same manner described above. All bonafide vedic sampradayas like dvaita, vishishtadvaita, advaita are unanimously on the side of vegetarianism.

//And remaining yagnyaas which are still being performed today are NOT vedic (they do not confirm to Yajur veda, which specifically calls for animal sacrifice)//

Such yagnas are still in conformance with yajur veda, if the animal is replaced by one made out of flour -'pishta pashu'. Stalwarts like Adi sankara and Madhvacharya have acknowledged this.

// Sri Krishna clearly states that we can offer him/god anything//

A gross misrepresentation of the Gita. Where is meat mentioned in that verse? patram -leaf,pushpam-'flower',phalam-'fruit'. In short, 'Arjuna, if you offer a leaf, flower,fruit and water with bhakti, I will be pleased.' is what it means.

// legend of Thinnappa (aka Kannappa)//

This story is quite popular in tamil lands. First of all, kannappa was a hunter-a community that were out of vedic purview. For THEM, meat eating is allowed, not for civilized people like us.'Some' ghastly saivite sects like pashupatas, kapalikas, kalamukhas, nagas and aghoras are not vedic at all, i.e they dont adhere to vedic lifestyle/ varnashrama dharma. Brahma sutras explicitly condemn them, how much ever neo-hindus justify. Kannapa might have belonged to one of these.Also remember the brahmin priest who hid behind the shrine to watch the spectacle was annoyed at kannapa, which means meat offering to major devatas like shiva was not the norm then.

//thus he passed the law prohibiting meat eating by these people unless it was a vedic yagnya offering.//

You earlier said vedic yagna offerings cant be done today, and if yudhishtira,a stauch sanatana dharmist (as you said), passed advice like that, why cant you follow his advice !
instead of arguing for meat consumption. Earlier you say jains influenced hindus to become vegetarians, but now you say the influence is from yudhistira.

//The Buddha avatar of Vishnu is not Buddha of Buddhism (which is why I stated you clearly have no knowledge of our puranas/vedas)//
I very well meant that buddhavatara (1800 BC ? ) is different from gautama buddha (5th century BC ?). Thought the latter followed the former. I wonder what knowledge you have when making ridiculous claims for meat eating. Tell your views to all mutts of the 3 genuine vedic sampradayas and return with the support of at least one vedic scholar who substantiates your claim. Let me see.

//Which is why Jainism and Buddhism took such a strong hold in India//
These nastika vadis took a strong hold in India not because brahmins were weak but because of Lord Vishnu's potency in Buddha avatara.

Siddha artha said...

Like madam jayasree said, I too would like to see those verses which describe Lord Rama ate meat.

Jay Sekhar said...

@Jayasree - You are a blogger & claim yourself to be a Sanatana Dharmist, and yet you ask me to quote references from Valmiki Ramayana? You ought to know such references & read them before you write your blogs!! Otherwise, you end up writing incorrect ideas as your opinions (like all these articles on meat eating as an example) and people get false ideas reading your blogs, no! Why do I need to provide you references from Scriptures, when YOU are the blogger here? You need to pick up your copy of Gita press or other publisher's print of Valmiki Ramayana & do the digging into such & other vedic scriptures yourself, but since the other person asked about this as well, I shall give you references to where you can find them in Valmiki Ramayana msainly for his benefit, but I shall not do your work for you by posting such slokas here and explaining them to you, you need to go, do your research & comprehend them yourself!

Where Lord Rama ate meat without sanctification ceremony - 33rd sloka in 55th sarga of Aodhya Kanda

Where Lord Rama ate meat sanctified by Vedas - 22nd sloka & thereafter in 56th Sarga of Ayodhya Kanda

//The core teaching of Sanathana Dharma is Ahimsa - Ahimsa paramo dharma.// - Wrong! This is a phrase popularized by Gandhi. And he utterred only 1/2 the phrase each time he recited this. Think about it, a criminal has raped and then murdered a young girl in the kingdom. What punishment will the king adjudicate to him? Killing by hanging or head chopped off. So, by adjudicating manu smriti punishment by killing that criminal for his crime, will the King be committing ahimsa? Under Buddhist & Jainic idiocy, yes. Under Vedic dharma, NO. Ahimsa Paramo Dharma, Dharma himsa tathaiva cha! "Non-violence is the ultimate dharma. So too is violence in service of Dharma!" Vedas DO NOT contradict nature, i.e. prakriti, i.e. Devi or Rta or nature's law. By your very act of speaking, or your daily boiling water at home, etc. you are killing life forms. You cannot avoid it to live your life! That is why ahimsa is not put on a pedestal by Vedas! Buddhist & Jainic incongruencies do, which is why they are false! In Vyasa MB, this "ahimsa paramo dharma" sloka is where Bhishma and Yudhistra are discussing duties of each Varna, and this part of a full phrase is uttered only where holy Brahmin (Ascetics aka 'Sanyaasi') duties are being discussed. It does not apply to non-ascetic Brarhmins & OTHER VEDIC HINDUS! Understand Vyasa MB before you copy other's half-baked opnions in their blogs & claim their misunderstood opinions to be your own!

Compassion & forgiveness needs to be offered and utilized as long as vedic dharma for each varna allows it. All Brahmins are required to be forgiving and peaceful in attitude. But they are required to eat meat in Shraddha ceremonies, whether according to Valmiki Ramayana, or according to Vyasa MB (in your own blog, Yudhistra & Bhishm make it clear) or according to Yajur Veda, otherwise Pitris do not reach their deserved lokas. It is unfortunate, we have come up with justifications during Kali yuga to offer other non-meat pindas during Shraadda ceremonies. But as our vedic scriptures state, Kali Yuga is the age of untruth after all.

Certain animals have already been Sanctified by Rishi Agastya (only one sentence from this sloka in MB is shown in your blog, so read the entire sloka & learn) long long ago, so we no longer need to offer them in a Vedic Yagnya to sactify them before eating. @ Siddha artha, hope you are also listening to this sloka in Vyasa MB, where Bhishma states clearly:

Jay Sekhar said...

prajānāṃ hitakāmena tv agastyena mahātmanā
āraṇyāḥ sarvadaivatyāḥ prokṣitās tapasā mṛgāḥ
kriyā hy evaṃ na hīyante pitṛdaivatasaṃśritāḥ
prīyante pitaraś caiva nyāyato māṃsatarpitāh

"Desirous of benefiting all men, the high-souled Agastya, by the aid of his penances, dedicated, once for all, all wild animals of the deer species to the deities. Hence, there is no longer any necessity of sanctifying those animals.................."

And just like this, Vaali in his arguments with Lord Rama states other animal species which can be eaten by humans. You vegetarians, due to your incapability to eat meat due to your mental block, end up slicing & dicing slokas in vedas/puranas to ONLY justify/support your inability to eat meat as if Vedas/puranas require a vegetarian lifestyle. Instead, if you were to keep an objective independant mind and read WHOLE of the slokas without removing them from context like you & your followers have done, you would understand the truth that you are missing currently!

Everything you have stated in your blogs in suport of your false perceptions on meat eating, incl. these copy pastes of other's opinons, is specific to ascetics, i.e. Sanyaasis! Vedic dharma is different for a Grishasta and is different for a Sanaasyi! It is ADHARMA for a sanyaasi to condone himsa & desire food and it is ADHARMA for a Grihasta to practice ahimsa & live like a Sanyaasi! Vedic dharma is different for a king and it is different for a peasant! You cannot pick dharma meant for one such lifestyle & try to impose it on other lifestyles under vedic dharma! Newton's 3rd law of motion cannot be equated exactly with Karma, because that karma, if allowed by vedic dharma, does not beget any opposite reaction as you seem to expect, but the reverse, i.e. not doing that what vedic dharma requires of brahmanas (such as those in a Shraadha ceremony) or other varnaas does beget equal reaction in after-life.

Vedic dharma is prescriptive as you claim, but the prescriptions stop at a point, and the vedic dharma asks us (take Bhagavad Gita as an example) to conduct introspective & retrospective analysis to comprehend the truth & causations of actions! Sanatana dharma presribes a lot under the sun but not everything, because it recognized that each individual must go through his/her own exprience in understanding & getting to paramaatma. Forgiving and compassion are dharma to an ascetic or a holy brahmin, but not dharmic to a king! Eating meat for some will still get them to paramaatma and eating meat by some won't get them there, accordingly! This meat eating issue is not an all inclusive adjudication like you seem to assume!

Jay Sekhar said...

@Siddha artha - //One's own personal opinions lead to misunderstandings. Vedic scriptures are not simply st..........// I expressed my opinion clearly labeling it as my opinion and you are talking about verses in scriptures about the same topic. Are you capable of debating at all? I doubt it. Did I state that my reading of scriptures was done to judge them using my own prejudices or brains? No, I didn't clearly. I am a very intelligent (all India rank-holder & soon to be promoted to Partnership of a 60,000 employee based global giant organization) and practicing Brahmin from India settled in US, and yet, after reading Valmiki ramayana and parts of Vyasa MB and Rig & Yajur Vedas, everytime I had a question or doubt on our vedas or puranas, I have either listened to pravachans by sikha-wearing gurus (i.e. practicing brahmin purohits with a sikha) or asked temple purohits in India as well as in US to clarify my doubts and questions. I have even stated in my previous reply to you about the source of some material I quoted. Yet, you are assuming inaccuracies about my posts. You are bound by the limits of your intellect, after all I guess.

// All bonafide vedic sampradayas like dvaita, vishishtadvaita, advaita are unanimously on the side of vegetarianism // & //Such yagnas are still in conformance with yajur veda, if the animal is replaced by one made out of flour -'pishta pashu'. Stalwarts like Adi sankara and Madhvacharya have acknowledged this.// - NO, they are not. Dharma doesn't change per yuga. Which is why it is 'Sanaatana dharma'. Aadi Sankaracharya, if you read about his life, as enunciated by Sankaraacharyas since then, you will realize that he had to make concessions to buddhists/jainics in re-converting back them to Vedic hindu fold, and one such thing was leaving them to follow their vegetarian lifestyles and still follow vedic dharma. But Aadi Sankara NEVER asked to replace meat offering in Yagnyaas or Sharaadha ceremonies with vegeratian fare! This came up much later, in fact post 1,000 A.D. Post Gupta age, the gurus had to contend with Buddhist & Jainic philosophies plus barbarism from islam and they ended up creating the now followed vegeratian rituals.

If you understood BG sloka on Phalam patram pushpam tooyam.... to ONLY mean those things, you have not understood that sloka at all! It means, you can offer ANYTHING you are about to eat to god, even a piece of rock if you are going to eat it to survive, god will be gratified by it! It is clear, who needs to stop using his own opinions or his own brain and need to approach a vedic guru (sikha wearing purohit).

Jay Sekhar said...

@Siddha artha - Please provide references here which Brahma Suutra condems it! Kannappa or his community were very much part of vedic fold. //Also remember the brahmin priest who hid behind the shrine to watch the spectacle .....// - that is the just of the legend, which is don't be an ignorant like that Brahmin with his assumptions, but it is ok to be like Kannappa since later in the same legend, Shiva clearly demonstrates that he was satisified by Kannappaa's offerings! Have you even read the entire historical legend?

//passed advice like that, why cant you follow his advice ! instead of arguing for meat consumption. Earlier you say jains influenced hindus to become vegetarians, but now you say the influence is from yudhistira.// - The answer is already in my previous reply to you, but clearly you read it hastily only to respond and not to listen/understand what I am saying, let me 'break it down' you... I stated chronological events. After MB war, Yudhistra passed that law, per purohits. Much later Jainism rose, when Bhaarat was no longer under Kuru empire & Kuru empire already eroded. Aadi Sankara had to then later bring back the Gautama buddha & Jainic followerd back into vedic fold. Now you get it? This is per our high school history.

//I very well meant that buddhavatara (1800 BC ? ) is different from gautama buddha (5th century BC ?). Thought the latter followed the former.// --- The original Buddha born in Ikshaaku line NEVER advocated leaving vedic dharma fold, whereas much later Gautama Siddhartha did. Further, unlike original buddha, Gautama Siddhartha absconded from his duties by leaving his wife & kid!!! That is absolute adharma per Sanatahan Dharma!!! Today's buddhism which is per Gautama Siddhartha's logic is ADHAMRA because it's founder himself was one who shunned vedic dharma!

//Thought the latter followed the former. I wonder what knowledge you have when making ridiculous claims for meat eating.// ----- Now you know based on my response to Jayasree how you are the one in need of this knowledge & my facts are facts & not claims like your conclusions!

//Tell your views to all mutts of the 3 genuine vedic sampradayas and return with the support of at least one vedic scholar who substantiates your claim. Let me see.// -- Have you ever listened to a pravachan from a sikha-wearing guru? That is a good place for your to start to unlearn your falsehoods and relearn Sanatana Dharma. If you cannot do that, then go to your local temple purohit and listen to him at a minimum, and you 'will see' the truth in what I have posted.

//These nastika vadis took a strong hold in India not because brahmins were weak but because of Lord Vishnu's potency in Buddha avatara.// - Lord Vishnu had NOTHING to do with naastik vaadis. God never does, if you were to understand Bhagavad Gita. The perpetrator was not his avataar anyway.

jayasree said...

@Jay Sekhar,

// @Jayasree - You are a blogger & claim yourself to be a Sanatana Dharmist, and yet you ask me to quote references from Valmiki Ramayana? You ought to know such references & read them before you write your blogs!! Otherwise, you end up writing incorrect ideas as your opinions (like all these articles on meat eating as an example) and people get false ideas reading your blogs, no! Why do I need to provide you references from Scriptures, when YOU are the blogger here? //

Fantastic!! A reader of my blogs cannot even know why I ask a question in a context like this! Check my blog where I wrote ‘When I ask a question know that I know 5 types of questions and ask the relevant one depending on the purpose to convey a point. It is obvious you have not understood why I asked those questions.’ If you have no patience to browse and find out from my blog, go to this link where I have written the 5 questions to know which one is the basis of my question I asked above. I repeat from that blog of mine that ‘I never under estimate anyone, but hardly find someone who is level headed!!’ This much is enough for your diatribes.

// You need to pick up your copy of Gita press or other publisher's print of Valmiki Ramayana & do the digging into such & other vedic scriptures yourself,//

That is the problem with you – picking up a copy of Ramayana etc and making your own interpretations. It is not so in my case. I have behind me authentic sources of interpretation of many a nuance of not only Ramayana and also other texts.

// I shall give you references to where you can find them in Valmiki Ramayana msainly for his benefit, but I shall not do your work for you by posting such slokas here and explaining them to you, you need to go, do your research & comprehend them yourself!//

What a kind of reader I have got!! Mention the Khanda, and I know what you are going to say and I also know how you had missed the context and landed up in misinterpretation. But your comment shows you have missed the most debated verses from the 2nd chapter (Ayodhya khanda) and settled down to the already settled verses, perhaps due to the reason they are available by google search!

(continued)

jayasree said...

// Where Lord Rama ate meat without sanctification ceremony - 33rd sloka in 55th sarga of Aodhya Kanda //

For the sake of other readers, I am writing down the verse quoted by Mr Jay Sekhar as conveying that Rama ate meat.

क्रोशमात्रम् ततो गत्वा भ्रातरौ रामलक्ष्मनौ ||
बहून्मेध्यान् मृगान् हत्वा चेरतुर्यमुनावने |

Meaning:

tataH = thereafter; gatvaa = having travelled; kroshamaatram = only a couple of miles; bhraatarau = the two brothers; raamalakshhmaNau = Rama and Lakshmana; hatvaa = killed; bahuun = many; medhyaan = consecrated; mR^igaan = deer; cheratuH = and ate; yamunaavane = in the river-forest of Yamuna.

Thereafter having travelled only a couple of miles the two brothers Rama and Lakshmana killed many consecrated deer and ate in the river-forest of Yamuna.


The location was the banks of river Yamuna before the three (Rama, Sita and Lakshmana) reached Chitrakuta.

It is obvious that Mr Jay Sekhar had not read the context but only picked out a verse for its English translation. Had he cared to know how this verse must be understood he would have read the entire sarga if not the entire Ramayana in detail. Had he cared to read this particular sarga alone, he would have found a much bigger ammunition against us and Sanathana Dharma itself, for, just before reaching the banks of Yamuna, while the three were crossing the middle of Yamuna in a raft, Sita made a terrific prayer to Yamuna. She prayed that she would offer 1000 cows and 100 water vessels if her husband safely returned to Ayodhya (20th sloka in that chapter).

Just imagine what Yamuna would look like if 1000 cows were scarified in its waters. If we were to understand these verses in the way Mr Jay and numerous of his likes think, Yamuna would become a river of blood! Did Sita mean this?

Sita also vowed to offer 100 SuraaghaTa – 100 pots of Suraa. Does she mean Suraa, the alcoholic drink?

The fact of the matter is the ‘gO’ in 1000 cows (gOsahasreNa) also means votive offerings of cow (dolls of cow or offerings in the shape of cow) and suraa just means water. What we must understand is that the life of Rama and Sita which offers insights into many kinds of Dharma cannot be interpreted against the basics of such Dharmas.

Now coming to the verse quoted by Mr Jay, the context begins in the previous chapter itself where sage Bharadwaja directs them to settle down in Chitrakuta. His very first reasoning is that Chitakuta is ‘rich in honey, tubers and fruits’. (Madhi moola phala upetham – sarga 54-38). That is, he recommends Chitarakuta as a good place to live, based on
the availability of food which are plant foods.

Again in the next sloka, he repeats the availability of ‘plenty of tubers and fruits’ (bahu moola phalaayutha). A place is chosen to be fit for living basically on the availability of food and the safety it offers. The subsequent verses of the sage concentrate on the safe, peaceful and beautiful environment found in Chitrakuta.

In chapter 55 they proceeded towards Chitrakuta after crossing Yamuna. The incident while crossing Yamuna was written above.

(continued)

jayasree said...

After reaching the banks, the three walk one behind the other with Sita in between and Lakshmana in the lead. Then Rama instructs Lakshmana to ‘give to Seetha whatever fruit or flower she desires’ (Phalam pushpam vaa – Sarga 2- 28). This means that Sita was collecting fruits while they were walking. What for these fruits?

It is only after this Valmiki writes that Rama and Lakshmana killed ‘bahUn mEdhyAn MrigAn’ and ‘चेरतु’ YamnunaavanE. The word Cherathu means grazing. The root word is ‘char’ which means to move. It means ‘moving hither and there’. This also means chewing.

The Kavi has combined all activities in one verse and that is why this confusion. Killing the deer is one action and they taking their dinner is another one and not related to each other.

Darkness was nearing and they have to rest in a place. They hunted some deer of Medhyam or sacred category and chewed up their food in the forest and then retired to sleep in a level ground on the banks. If they had really eaten the flesh of the deer they hunted, and eaten them, the Kavi would have described the process too, because the Kavi can be seen to give a graphic detail of every move of them.

Already in the previous verses, it had been mentioned that Sita collected fruits. What for did she collect them? And what for Rama- Lakshmana killed the sacred deer?

In the next verse that Mr Jay quoted, the details of cooking the antelope meat is given. Why that is missing in this verse if what they actually ate was deer flesh? Does it mean they ate the raw flesh of the deer? But they chewed up their food and not ate. The word to be used for eating the meat is ‘khAdhathi’. This word is associated with eating, but why then the Kavi used the word Cherathu which does not go well with eating meat?
The very purpose for selecting Chitrakuta for their dwelling is the availability of plant food. How then can we interpret that they ate the flesh of deer?
Here remains a question why they hunted the deer in the first place. Hunting the deer is mentioned in many places. Of all the places, the unlikely context is when Rama grew anxious after Mareecha died crying out the names of Sita and Lakshmana. Rama has killed Mareecha in golden deer form. When Mareecha died crying out the names of Sita and Lakshma in Rama’s voice, the Kavi says Rama was in hair rising predicament (hRSTa) and was in the grip of Bhayam (fear). But even after that he killed a spotted deer and carried its flesh (maamsam aadaaya).

Rama knows that he has been lured and cheated by Mareecha in golden deer form. He knows that something could terribly be wrong with Sita. He was very much anxious to return and see that Sita is safe. But even in that tough situation he killed a deer and carried its flesh. Is it logical to think that he did so for dinner?

The reasons may be different in that context, but the reason for hunting the sacred deer before retiring to sleep on the banks of Yamuna could be only one thing. It is to procure the deer skin for use as mat which is a common practice for many and for the ascetics until 50 years ago. Another reason could be to lure away the wild animals from their place by leaving the carcass on the place where they were hunted so that the wild animals may not be able to smell their presence in the open area where they have to rest for the night.
Therefore this verse cannot be interpreted to mean that that Rama ate the meat of the deer.

(continued)

jayasree said...

// Where Lord Rama ate meat sanctified by Vedas - 22nd sloka & thereafter in 56th Sarga of Ayodhya Kanda//

The sloka is
ऐणेयम् मांसम् आहृत्य शालाम् यक्ष्यामहे वयम् |
कर्त्व्यम् वास्तुशमनम् सौमित्रे चिरजीवभिः ||

22. saumitre = Oh; Lakshmana!; aahR^itya = being; aiNeyam maamsam = bring meat of the antelope; vayam = we; yakshyaamahe = shall worship; shaalaam = (this) leaf-hut; vaastushamanam = purifactory ceremony on entering the house; kartavyam = on entering the; chirajiivibhiH = by those who wish to live long.

"Oh, Lakshmana! Bring the meat of an antelope. We shall perform a purifactory ceremony while entering the house. Which is to be done by those who wish to live long."

The description continues:-

मृगम् हत्वाऽऽनय क्षिप्रम् लक्ष्मणेह शुभेक्षण
कर्तव्यः शास्त्रदृष्टो हि विधिर्दर्ममनुस्मर ||

23. shubhekshaNa = Oh; large-eyed; lakshmaNa = Lakshmana!; hatvaa = killing; mR^igam = the antelope; kshhipram = quickly; anaya = bring; iha = here;vidhiH = the prescribed rite; shaastra dR^iSTaH = according to scriptural point of view; kartavyaH hi = indeed is to be done; anusmara = keep in mind; dharmam = the sacred obligation."

"Oh, large-eyed Lakshmana! Killing the antelope quickly, bring it here. The prescribed rite according to scriptural point of view indeed is to be performed. Keep in mind the sacred obligation."

Rama further tells Lakshmana:-

इणेयम् श्रपयस्वैतच्च्चालाम् यक्ष्यमहे वयम् |
त्वरसौम्य मुहूर्तोऽयम् ध्रुवश्च दिवसोऽप्ययम् ||

25. saumya = Oh; great brother!; shrapayasva = boil; etat = this; aiNeyam = antelope's meat; vayam = we; yakshyaamahe = shall worship; shaalaam = the leaf-hut; ayam = this; divasaH = day; ayam = (and) this; muhuurtaH api = instant also; dhruvaH = are of a distinctive character; tvara = be quick.

"Oh, gentle brother! Boil this antelope's meat. We shall worship the leaf-hut. This day and this instant also are of a distinctive character. Be quick."

And how Lakshmana cooks it is described by the Kavi:-

स लक्ष्मणः कृष्ण मृगम् हत्वा मेध्यम् पतापवान् |
अथ चिक्षेप सौमित्रिः समिद्धे जात वेदसि ||

atha = then; saH lakshmaNaH = that Lakshmana; prataapavaan = the strong man; saumitriH = and son of Sumitra; hatvaa = killing; medhyam = the holy;kR^iSNa mR^igam = black antelope; chikSepa = tossed; jaata vedasi = in a fire; samiddhe = ignited.

Then, Lakshmana the strong man and son of Sumitra, killing a holy back antelope, tossed it in an ignited fire.

तम् तु पक्वम् समाज्ञाय निष्टप्तम् चिन्न शोणितम् |
लक्ष्मणः पुरुष व्याघ्रम् अथ राघवम् अब्रवीत् ||

(continued)

jayasree said...

27. parijJNaaya = feeling certain; pakvam = it is cooked; niSTaptam = and heated thoroughly; chinna shoNitam = with no blood remaining; lakshmaNaH = Lakshmana; atha = thereafter; abraviit = spoke; raaghavam = to Rama; puruSa vyaaghram = the lion among men (as follows).

Feeling certain that it is cooked and heated thoroughly with no blood remaining, Lakshmana spoke to Rama the lion among man as follows:

अयम् कृष्णः समाप्त अन्गः शृतः कृष्ण मृगो यथा |
देवता देव सम्काश यजस्व कुशलो हि असि ||

28. ayam = this; kR^iSNaH mR^igo = black antelope; samaapta angaH = with its complete limbs; shR^itaH = has been cooked; sarvaH = completely; mayaa = by me; deva damkaasha = Oh Rama; remsembling god!; yajasva = worship; devataaH = the deities; asi ahi = you are indeed; kushalaH = skilled (in such act)

"This black antelope, with its complete limbs, has been cooked completely by me. Oh, Rama resembling God! Worship the concerned deity, as you are skilled in that act."

Then what happens?

रामः स्नात्वा तु नियतः गुणवान् जप्य कोविदः |
सम्ग्रहेणाकरोत्सर्वान् मन्त्रन् सत्रावसानिकान् ||

29. raamaH = Rama; guNavaan = the virtuous man; japyakovidaH = and the learned man in chanting of prayers; snaatvaa = after taking bath; niyataH = with subdned mind; samgraheNa = briefly; akarot = chanted; sarvaan = all; mantran = the sacred scripts; satraavasaanikaan = which are to be chanted at the end of a purifactory ceremony.

Rama, the virtuous man and the learned man in chanting of sacred spells, after taking bath and with subdued mind, briefly chanted all the sacred scripts to be chanted at the end of a purifactory ceremony.

Nowhere it is mentioned that Rama or Lakshmana or Sita ate the flesh thus cooked by heating it raw on fire until the blood drained.

(continued)

jayasree said...

The context is obviously a kind of Grahapravesha in the forest. At the moment of entering the leaf-hut (parNa shAla) in a FOREST, an animal (sacred deer here) is offered to the deities of the forest . The stress on ‘forest’ is because when an area of a forest is cleared to make a dwelling, animal sacrifice is done. To know the rationale of this practice read part-3 of Kedarnath floods in my blogspot.

(http://jayasreesaranathan.blogspot.in/2013/07/pralaya-in-kedarnath-some-musings-part.html ). Read the inscription of Cheramaan Perumal and the explanations given under that in that article.

By offering the meat of antelope, Rama, who is an expert in japa, completed the purifactory ceremony for that place. In the case of urban dwelling, Punyahavachanam is done to purify a place. In forest areas, there was a tradition to offer animal flesh to the VanachariNi as a mark of purifying the place and making it fit for safe dwelling for humans. That is explained in those verses. Nowhere it is written that they ate the offered meat.

Though Rama had taken bath before doing this purifactory ceremony to enter the house, he again took bath in the river to do worship of Rudra, Vishnu, Vishwadeva and others. There is no way he had taken the meat in between as these sequences show that he was engaged in continuous worship one after the other – first one to enter the house by propitiating forest deities and then preparing himself by taking bath again to worship Gods likes Rudra and Vishnu. Even Lakshmana also did not eat the meat of antelope and he was busy erecting the pillars of the hut.

Thereafter Rama did a Homa by offering fruits, roots and cooked meat. All these must have been consumed by the agni in the Homa. On completion of this Homa they formally entered the house (patNa shAla). At no time they were told to have eaten the meat or even the residue of the homa.

Therefore this verse also cannot be quoted to say that Rama ate meat. There is no sanctifying the meat food for eating. All that Rama did was to do Punyahavachana ceremony for the new house and worship of deities after entering. What was cooked was not for them to eat.

(continued)

jayasree said...

// //The core teaching of Sanathana Dharma is Ahimsa - Ahimsa paramo dharma.// - Wrong! This is a phrase popularized by Gandhi. //

From where Gandhi got that idea?

// hink about it, a criminal has raped and then murdered a young girl in the kingdom. What punishment will the king adjudicate to him? Killing by hanging or head chopped off. So, by adjudicating manu smriti punishment by killing that criminal for his crime, will the King be committing ahimsa?//

You are confused. Himsa done to satisfy one’s own need is a sin that attracts retribution. In yajnas only it was sanctioned, because those yajnas were meant for larger good or universal good. That is why it is said ‘vaidee himsa, na himsa’. This himsa for vedik purpose includes the himsa that one does to oneself by fasting and hurting oneself.
Similarly the himsa done for common good or as a punishment to establish law and order is acceptable. Even in the penal laws of today a criminal or a murderer must be tried and given punishment accordingly. The question of himsa does not come there as it is for common good and for establishing justice. But if an individual takes up the law in his hand and kills the criminal or murderer, he cannot escape the law; he will be tried for what he did and will be given punishment accordingly. But it is not so with a king or the judge or even the hangman who carried out the judgment of a court. What a king did in those days is being done by the judge (justice system) today. The king cannot give the ruling for killing a criminal without proper hearing. The same in today’s justice system.

jayasree said...

// By your very act of speaking, or your daily boiling water at home, etc. you are killing life forms. You cannot avoid it to live your life! That is why ahimsa is not put on a pedestal by Vedas! //

You are wrong, or rather I will use the term, ill-informed. Read Part-3 of my article on Athithi as God. http://www.scribd.com/doc/12914327/Athithi-devo-bhava
A grushatha becomes responsible for 5 types of killings in his house when he (1) burns the firewood for cooking,(2) grinds flour in the grinding stone,(3) sweeps the floor,(4) breaks the grains and(5) boils water.

In all these acts which are regularly done, many micro organisms and living things such as insects are killed. His house becomes a ground for 'Soona' (killing).These killings are unavoidable, unintentional and beyond the control of one. They do constitute himsa but unlike the Jains, Sanathana Dharma finds a way to reduce or do away with the karmic effect by suggesting to do 5 yajnas (Pancha Maha yajna) namely (1) Brahma Yajna, (2) Deva yajna (3) Pithru yajna (4) Bhootha yajna and (5) Manushya yajna. The last one is done by offering Athithi bhojanam.

// In Vyasa MB, this "ahimsa paramo dharma" sloka is where Bhishma and Yudhistra are discussing duties of each Varna, and this part of a full phrase is uttered only where holy Brahmin (Ascetics aka 'Sanyaasi') duties are being discussed.//

No. You are wrong. How the dialogue on himsa started has been given in the above blog. Check yourself in whatever book you have.

“One should never do that to another which one regards as injurious to one's own self. This, in brief, is the rule of Righteousness (Dharma)”(13-113, MB)

// It does not apply to non-ascetic Brarhmins & OTHER VEDIC HINDUS! Understand Vyasa MB before you copy other's half-baked opnions in their blogs & claim their misunderstood opinions to be your own!//

There is no ascetic Brahmins or non ascetic Brahmins. Any varna person can become an ascetic.

Once he is an ascetic, his varna tag does not attach to him.

Similarly there no Vedic Hindus who eat meat. One who claims himself as Vedic Hindu should abstain from meat – that is abstain from injury to a life to satisfy his tongue or stomach or to grow his own life. Shankaracharya Swaroopanand Saraswathy refused to accept Sai Baba as Hindu God as he ate meat. (http://www.indiadivine.org/shankaracharya-sai-baba-used-to-eat-meat-how-can-he-be-called-a-hindu-god/ )

// Compassion & forgiveness needs to be offered and utilized as long as vedic dharma for each varna allows it. //

These are universal and that is why I was picking out articles on this subject by people from other regions and not divulge in what Sanathan Dharma says (until now, when I was drawn into this by you).

(continued)

jayasree said...

// All Brahmins are required to be forgiving and peaceful in attitude. But they are required to eat meat in Shraddha ceremonies, whether according to Valmiki Ramayana, or according to Vyasa MB (in your own blog, Yudhistra & Bhishm make it clear) or according to Yajur Veda, otherwise Pitris do not reach their deserved lokas.//

What a logic! Forgivance and peaceful attitude must be there for everyone. If you have told that it comes to Sattwic persons, I would have agreed. Sattwic nature comes from vegetarian food only. Elsewhere in a comment you have claimed yourself as a practicing Brahmin! By your logic you as a meat eater cannot have forgiving nature and peaceful attitude. How come you claim yourself to be a Brahmin – by your own standard?

On Shraddha ceremonies:- Have you ever heard, other than what is written in texts like MB, of a Brahmin having taken meat in Shraddha ceremony? The rationale of Shraddha or offering tarpan to pithrus is written by me in many articles. Read them.

// It is unfortunate, we have come up with justifications during Kali yuga to offer other non-meat pindas during Shraadda ceremonies. But as our vedic scriptures state, Kali Yuga is the age of untruth after all.//

Yes, untruth prevails in Kali yuga with likes of yourself making claims on meat eating as in your comments.

// Certain animals have already been Sanctified by Rishi Agastya (only one sentence from this sloka in MB is shown in your blog, so read the entire sloka & learn) long long ago, so we no longer need to offer them in a Vedic Yagnya to sactify them before eating//

If I have an ulterior motive, I could have avoided those verses. But those verses clearly say that certain animals have been sanctified to be offered in yajnas and not for feasting on their flesh. Are you or other meat eaters take the residue of the yajna? Agasthya sanctioned only for yajnas. As Siddha Artha quoted twice, why don’t you read the article on Yajna in my blogspot by Mr Ramanathan who had partaken in yajnas and taken Soma. The right to taste (not eat) the meat offered in a yajna does not come to one easily and such yajnas cannot take place easily in today’s world (kali yuga). Even those who are qualified to take them, take only a pea nut size of it from the yajna fire; not cooked in the kitchen with all the additives.

// prajānāṃ hitakāmena tv agastyena mahātmanā
āraṇyāḥ sarvadaivatyāḥ prokṣitās tapasā mṛgāḥ
kriyā hy evaṃ na hīyante pitṛdaivatasaṃśritāḥ
prīyante pitaraś caiva nyāyato māṃsatarpitāh

"Desirous of benefiting all men, the high-souled Agastya, by the aid of his penances, dedicated, once for all, all wild animals of the deer species to the deities. Hence, there is no longer any necessity of sanctifying those animals.//

By this it is meant that certain animals were deemed to be fit for sacrificing in the yajna. Look at the word “prajānāṃ hitakāmena” benefiting all men. It is not a sanction to cook at your kitchen. It is for the yajna done for welfare of people at large. Based on this only we come across adjectives such as sacred or consecrated before the word deer or antelope in Valmiki Ramayana. They did not kill any animal or any species of deer for sacrifice.

// And just like this, Vaali in his arguments with Lord Rama states other animal species which can be eaten by humans. //

It is obvious you have not read my article on animal sacrifice for which I have given the link at the end of the blog.


(continued)

jayasree said...

// You vegetarians, due to your incapability to eat meat due to your mental block, end up slicing & dicing slokas in vedas/puranas to ONLY justify/support your inability to eat meat as if Vedas/puranas require a vegetarian lifestyle//

Not worthy of a reply and not a worthy comment in my blog.

// Instead, if you were to keep an objective independant mind and read WHOLE of the slokas without removing them from context like you & your followers have done, you would understand the truth that you are missing currently!//

Shows your ignorance. I have given the unedited version for most part. In addition I have given the links to the source. These verses, even after telling that men like meat and eat meat etc, makes it a point to stress on abstention from himsa and therefore meat.

// Everything you have stated in your blogs in suport of your false perceptions on meat eating, incl. these copy pastes of other's opinons, is specific to ascetics, i.e. Sanyaasis! //

It is for anyone to reduce the karma and get into the path of release from rebirth.

// Vedic dharma is different for a Grishasta and is different for a Sanaasyi! It is ADHARMA for a sanyaasi to condone himsa & desire food and it is ADHARMA for a Grihasta to practice ahimsa & live like a Sanyaasi! Vedic dharma is different for a king and it is different for a peasant! You cannot pick dharma meant for one such lifestyle & try to impose it on other lifestyles under vedic dharma!//

Vedic Dharma is different for different people. But Condoning himsa does not have varna shade. What you have said for the specific context of himsa for satisfying oneself is never extolled in any sastra.

// Newton's 3rd law of motion cannot be equated exactly with Karma, because that karma, if allowed by vedic dharma, does not beget any opposite reaction as you seem to expect, but the reverse, i.e. not doing that what vedic dharma requires of brahmanas (such as those in a Shraadha ceremony) or other varnaas does beget equal reaction in after-life. //

I wantonly wrote about Newton’s 3rd law equating it with karma theory, because I waited for this reaction from you to drive home the point that only under constant conditions, equal and opposite reactions happen. In reality that is not the case. A repentance or penance can reduce the reactionary impact of action. In 13-112 of MB Brihaspathi says, ‘One becomes freed from one's sins in proportion as one repents for them.’. The first step for this is that one must that one has committed wrong. For that only we refer to Sruti texts as authority. Only when one knows that eating meat is himsa, one can get into the next stage of giving it up and repentance. Giving up meat in shraddha ceremony (if at all such a practice existed) is not a sin and does not beget a reactionary karma as the basics of offering in that ceremony is what is liked by the departed soul.

There are sastra and sampradhaya for any act. Without sastras, the sampradhya does not come. But not everything of sastra becomes a sampradhya. It depends on kala, desa, varthamana for an act to become part of sampradhya. But such an act must have sastric sanction. Meat eating (or in shraddha) as a sampradhya or tradition can be given up as there is sastric injunction to it. No mantra in shraddha ceremony makes a provision for meat to be served is itself a proof of sastric injunction against meat in shraddha.



(continued)

jayasree said...

// Vedic dharma is prescriptive as you claim, but the prescriptions stop at a point, and the vedic dharma asks us (take Bhagavad Gita as an example) to conduct introspective & retrospective analysis to comprehend the truth & causations of actions! //

Yes, do it honestly. You will come to my point.

// Sanatana dharma presribes a lot under the sun but not everything, because it recognized that each individual must go through his/her own experience in understanding & getting to paramaatma.//

May be that’s your case. In this context, texts come as ready reckoner to know what is dharma and what is adharma. Yudhishtira’s question is exactly that (what is dharma and what is adharma).

// Forgiving and compassion are dharma to an ascetic or a holy brahmin, but not dharmic to a king! //

Scary logic! That means only a miniscule of the population will have compassion and forgiving nature? If a king or Prime minister or Chief minister is so ( as you say), he will usurped.

// Eating meat for some will still get them to paramaatma and eating meat by some won't get them there, accordingly! //

Basis of it is karma theory – you incur papa and get into more vicious circle. Where to see Paramathman in that situation? Paramathman is Shuddha Sattwa. Only when one reaches that state of Shuddha sattwa, one can attain Paramathan. Food is a main factor in infusing sattwa, something Gitacharyan tells emphatically. Is meat sattwa food?

(continued)

jayasree said...

//This meat eating issue is not an all inclusive adjudication like you seem to assume!//

Because of the above reason, meat eating is an issue for one to be Sanathanist or a Dharmist.

Jay Sekhar said...

@Jayasree - //A reader of my blogs cannot even // --- thus begins the lore of your many a

misunderstanding & contradictions - I read a very few selected blogs pieces you wrote. Now, when you are the blogger, the onus as a writer is on you to keep PROVIDING your reference blogs, etc. when you write. For an example of a good blogger, see Ramani's blog for example - (https://ramanan50.wordpress.com/) --- Full Disclaimer, I am not a tamil person at all like yourself and that Ramani fellow, just FYI!! I am a Telugu person and not associated with ANY internet blog. No, I am not your 'blog reader', Get rid of this entitlement mentality and learn to write like an author & not like a scribe as you currently practice.

//picking up a copy of Ramayana etc and making your own interpretations.// ---- I cannot

believe, that either you do not have the patience to read my entire post or you do not

understand english. Where in my post did i say that I stating 'my interpretations'? I clearly

stated that I read translations, I enquired of sikha wearing pravachan gurus or temple sikha

wearing vedic purohits to obtain my understanding. You clearly didn't do this, and instead are

posting about YOUR interpretations, which, as I will ONCE AGAIN highlight below, are false and

half-baked ideas of your own.

//Mention the Khanda, and I know what you are going to say and I also know how you h......//

----- Very assuming then, aren't you? You prove me again & again about your half-baked

assumption driven mentality.

//perhaps due to the reason they are available by google search!// - Again, judging before-

hand, aren't we? What evidence do you have that I relied on google? They are available in

printed books also, clarifying since you may need to pick up one and read.

Then you write about your interpretations and your questions that your mind posed to you about

Sita offering Yamuna river foods & drinks. Perhaps that was the practice in those days. Completely irrelevant to the topic being discussed. You only highlighted what verses have slowly influenced you in forming your misconceptions.

Thereafter you wrote 8 paragraphs on the sloka wherein Valmiki said that they killed deer and ate it. Yet, you did not disprove me here. You posted a lot of questions about Sita's appetite for fruits and why they killed deer. One one hand you are further clarifying my point that they

killed sanctified deer and on the other hand you DON'T explain what they did with the deer if,

to your prejudiced assumption they didn't eat it! Valmiki clearly states that they ate it,

using 'cheratuh'. What do you think they did with it if they didn't eat it? Are Rama and

Lakshmana wasteful selfish characters who would kill something & waste it to rot in the forest

(not to mention which would then attract unnecessary carcass eating carnivores to the scene at

night)?? Since you will twist and accuse me of my own invention if I were to ask you to use

common sense, don't. I have listened to two sikha wearing guru pravachans, & both translated

the word 'cheratauh' as 'and ate'. Why don't you go & ask such sikha wearing pravachan gurus from Tamil Nadu instead? That will clarify your own ignorance on properly understanding this sloka. It is easy for everyone to see what Valmiki meant here, but you seem to have gone through unnecessary lengths to twist his usage of sanskrit to suit your own agenda. That much is clear.

Jay Sekhar said...

//In the next verse that Mr Jay quoted, the details of cooking the antelope meat is given. Why that is missing in this verse if what they actually ate was deer flesh?// The word 'cheratuh' means 'and ate'. You refuse to accept it, because in your mind (now this is my

opinion, based on your vehement defense of your stubborn yet in-congruent opinions you expressed, on why you have your prejudices), you think this way - "If Rama told Bharadwaja that he will eat tubers & fruits and then later Valmiki says Rama killed and ate meat, didn't Rama lie? That cannot be for it is against Sanatana Dharma to lie, no?" Due to this tumult in your brain, you are dying to prove that Rama did not eat meat. But Valmiki is clear in the fact that he ate. That does not make Rama any less of a great dharmist, we all need to aspire to be! YOU just ASSUME it won't make Rama a great Sanatana Dharmist.......don't assume like that. Ask sikha wearing purohits in local temples or when they are doing pravachans.

//The very purpose for selecting Chitrakuta for their dwelling is the availability of plant
food. How then can we interpret that they ate the flesh of deer?..// ----- There it is!! Now, it is clear who is trying & dying to do interpretations here. YOU!! Yet, you accuse me of interpreting when I am taking Valmiki literally or AFTER confirmation from purhoits! Don't INTERPRET, take Valmiki literally. He is a un-materialistic maharishi and even you will acknowledge, he didn't lie!

//Another reason could be to lure away the wild animals from their place by leaving the
carcass on the place where they were hunted so that the wild animals may not be able to smell their p....// - No, you are incorrect and since you clearly never lived in a forest, let me educate you since I camped & lived in couple forests. One of the first things we learnt in doing so, is NEVER, EVER to leave gutted insides (i.e. intestines, stomach, etc. which we don't want to eat except muscles) of the animals ANYWHERE near our tents, because, it will attract 1) Bears, 2) foxes, wolves, wild dogs etc. to where we live, and once they see us, they quickly set their sights on us to hunt since the animal insides are NEVER sufficient to curb their appetites (their appetites are satiated with blood, liver, heart, brain & muscles in that order)!! So now, forget their insides, imagine the danger they would have faced if they left entire meat with bones next to their ashram!! I have seen how savagely animals eat cooked meat, you clearly haven't.

//Therefore this verse cannot be interpreted to mean that that Rama ate the meat of the deer. // ------ DON'T interpret. Use your current experiences in your life. In any vratha you conducted/attended, or in any yagnya you conducted/attended or in any puja you may have
done/attended, have you ever seen sacred offering of food made to god (naivedyam/prasaadam)
uneaten by the participants/attendees????????????????? Take it for what Valmiki is clearly
saying, they offered to god as naivedyam, and then they ate it, the same & exact way, you
currently do today with vegetarian foods!

//Nowhere it is mentioned that Rama or Lakshmana or Sita ate the flesh thus cooked by heating it raw on fire until the blood drained.// & //Nowhere it is written that they ate the offered meat.// ------ Maharishi Valmiki didn't need to state the obvious, which you yourself still do today with vegetarian offerings to the sacred dieties!!

//There is no way he had taken the meat in between as these sequences show that he was engaged in continue....// - yes, even today, you wait until all parts of the yagnya is done before partaking the naivedyam offered to god. That is what Rama & Lakshmana did.

Jay Sekhar said...

//All these must have been consumed by the agni in the Homa...// - Again, I know you are
expressing your own opinions & interpretations, and I once again have to put you in your place by pointing the obvious to you that don't assume your interpretations to be truth, because they are exactly that, your interpretations. Yet, I shall at least state common sense here. Think about it, do you know how large an antelope carcass is? Imagine putting that in agni in a homa! Rama clearly offered it as naivedya & not throw it into agni like you assume.

//Therefore this verse also cannot be quoted to say that Rama ate meat. There is no
sanctifying the meat food for eating.// -- Your fallacy in this statement has been clearly
exposed and rendered invalid in my above replies.

//All that Rama did was to do Punyahavachana ceremony for the new house and worship of deities after entering. What was cooked was not for them to eat. // ----- Then, what was it for? clearly, your interpretations fall short since you never ate meat. Fire would simple be extinguished under a huge cooked carcass like an antelope's if put on it. It was for neivedya which had to be eaten thereafter, since naivedyas are eaten as god's prasadam to us under Sanatana Dharma.

Havis is a seperate concept. Havis is poured into agni and not 'offered' to god. Havis is
blood, where as meat/pindam is an offering. Just FYI, since based on your replies you clearly do not know the difference.

//You are confused. Himsa done to satisfy one’s own need is a sin that attracts
retribution...// Not me, dear. It is clear who is confused here. YOU, because clearly you do not know that Sanatana dhamra condones apadh dharma. When you are in trouble, i.e. in clear present & immediate danger, if you were to kill in self defence, that will NOT beget you sin per Sanatana Dharma. Don't think so? Again, go ask a sikha wearing purohit.

//The question of himsa does not come there as it is for common good and for establishing
justice....// & //......These killings are unavoidable, unintentional and beyond the control of one. They do constitute himsa....// ------- Now you see the fallacy of a statement like 'Ahimsa paramo dharmaha...' which you were touting in your previous post??????? as an absolute out-of-context statement! I love your responses to my posts, you just keep exposing fallacies in your arguments and keep proving me right. An old adage, usually attributed to Mark Twain, you keep proving right about youself - 'It is better to keep your mouth closed and let people think you are a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.' It may be better for you to stop responding to my posts, instead of removing all doubt in your readers' minds. And instead, read my responses for understanding rather than reading solely for replying. After the above statements you made, you proceeded to explain why Sanatana Dharma condones such grishastha himsa, further proving me true. I am glad you know those reasons for your readers sake.

Jay Sekhar said...

//Similarly there no Vedic Hindus who eat meat....// Then, you clearly do not know the vedic purohits of Kashmir, or Afghanistan & Pakistan who eat meat. You clearly do not know of some Bengali and Marathi vedic purohits who eat meat. They are not in the wrong, because as I exposed your lack of understanding of Sanatana Dharma above, you are in the wrong on your assumptions. Sanatana Dharma permits meat eating very well!

//Compassion & forgiveness needs to be offered and utilized as long as vedic dharma for each varna allows it. ..........These are universal....// No they are not, should I copy paste your own replies above wherein you state that it is ok for himsa in certain circumstances???

//Forgivance and peaceful attitude must be there for everyone....// No, a king, a warrior and a minister should not be forgiving, if they were, it will be the end of that kingdom.

//If you have told that it comes to Sattwic persons, I would have agreed. Sattwic nature comes from vegetarian food only.....// Herein lies the biggest misconception you have. You are equating sattwic attitude with peacefulness. Satvik or Sattwic is not 'shaanti'. Satvik or Sattwic attutude means strength of heart or courage. If you are not strong of heart, you CANNOT do the right thing under any circumstance!

//By your logic you as a meat eater cannot have forgiving nature and peaceful attitude....// ---- So you clearly didnt read my post to comprehend, but only read it to respond & push your own agenda. By my logic, I can eat meat & still be a vedic persona! Then, you are attacking my character about forgiveness & peaceful nature. You made judgments about it, but you neither have ever met me, not have you ever talked to me. So, How do you know whether my nature is as you describe? You do not know. Are we to understand that at this point, you lost your mind to anger and temper, and thus should we discount any further written responses from you as an angry person's stubborn outburst?

//On Shraddha ceremonies:- Have you ever heard, other than what is written in texts like MB, of a Brahmin having taken meat in Shraddha ceremony....// ------ Why do we need to hear? It is clearly there in Kirshna Yajur Veda, read it!

//Yes, untruth prevails in Kali yuga with likes of yourself making claims on meat eating as in your comments....// ------ right, just quote back to me what I said about you. Clearly, you couldn't come up with something better to counter-argue against what I said about you. Demonstrates the limits of your own intellect.

//As Siddha Artha quoted twice, why don’t you read the article on Yajna in....// - What authority does this 'Siddha Aratha' have? I have read Valmiki's ramayana, and Rig Veda in entirety, they are authority and I trust them. If you seriously are trusting nobody's like this Siddha Artha fellow, here's a CAUTION to you, dont further fall in ignorance by trusting praises/following of/from this type of people. Btw, do you know that Mr. Ramanathan personally? If not, you have no surety of his character and authenticity of his opinions. I for one, will continue to take Valmiki and Rishis of Rig & Yajur veda literally, with explanations from Sikha-wearing gurus/purohits only. As a blogger, you ought to also!

//Look at the word “prajānāṃ hitakāmena” benefiting all men. It is not a sanction to cook at your kitchen. It is for the yajna done for welfare of people at large.....// ----- Agastya clearly stated that there is no further sanctification required for deers. You are trying to twist what he may have 'meant'. I will not try to interpret, like you, about his purpose of saying it. I take it for face value since he is an authority to be trusted, unlike you.

Jay Sekhar said...

//It is obvious you have not read my article on animal sacrifice for which I have given the link at the end of the blog. // - No, we don't need to read your article. Instead we need to read Vakmiki Ramayana, to obtain our understanding on what Vaali & Ramayana discussed, which is what I read. Perhaps you ought to re-read it.

//Shows your ignorance. I have given the unedited version for most part. In addition I have given the links to the source....// ----- he he, NO, shows YOUR ignorance, since you are unable to prove me wrong!

//I wantonly wrote about Newton’s 3rd law equating it with karma theory, because I waited for this reaction from you.......// ------ lol!!! Ya, right.. you are corresponding with a master debater here, i know the very feeling you experienced when you wrote this sentence. You know very well, you were surprised that I brought up Newton's law, and your ego prevented you from feeling a little sad that someone else on this earth could actually conjure up this comparison.

//... drive home the point that only under constant conditions, equal and opposite reactions happen. In reality that is not the case. ....// ---- right, once again you prove my point, that newton's 3rd law of motion cannot be equated to be vedic karma concept, which you have hastily done in your own previous post. Now, of course you are singing a different tune, my tune, i.e.

//For that only we refer to Sruti texts as authority.....// ----- right, so how come you were quoting us your interpretations previously as I have exposed above instead of relying and taking for face value Valmiki's or Agastya's verbatim?????

//Without sastras, the sampradhya does not come.....// ------- Right, so now you know you can take what Valmiki sung for face value since he must have simply been narrating existing sampradhaaya, which must have come from their understanding of then Shaastrass, instead of interpreting on your own!

//But not everything of sastra becomes a sampradhya. It depends on kala, desa, varthamana for an act to become part of sampradhya. But such an act must have sastric sanction. // ----- Did you realize how you just contradicted yourself?

Jay Sekhar said...

//Meat eating (or in shraddha) as a sampradhya or tradition can be given up as there is sastric injunction to it....// --- really, where is this Saastric injunction per Yajur veda, which is the source of the mantraas and achaaraas for this ceremony? Quote the verses please!

//No mantra in shraddha ceremony makes a provision for meat to be served is itself a proof of sastric injunction against meat in shraddha. // ----- Which verses in Shukla or Krishna Yajur veda state such exceptions? Please quote & explain!

//Scary logic! That means only a minuscule of the population will have compassion and forgiving nature? If a king or Prime minister or Chief minister is so ( as you say), he will usurped. // ---- That is not sacry logic, it is the truth, i.e. simple logic. How many countless 'forgiving' Hindu kings have been defeated by deceit by the very Islamic kings they have forgiven? Sanaaatana dharma, i.e. dharma which exists eternally, remember??

//Where to see Paramathman in that situation? // --- you see the paramaatma if you have done the duty of your varna. Clearly you don't know that since your brain is consumed entirely with your vehement arguing against it. Don't you know the historical report of Brahmin Kousika and Meat Vendor in Vyasa MB? If you are born in the varna of a Slaughterer of animals, doing your duty will get you to paramatma!

//Food is a main factor in infusing sattwa, something Gitacharyan tells emphatically. Is meat sattwa food? // ---- Yes, a resounding yes, since it is not the food but your attitude (or what influences your attitude rather such as the arishad-vargaas) that define your nature. Saatvik is not peacefulness as many a sanyaasiis have incorrectly demanded of all varna-aashramaa people in the past 60 years. You need to have a very strong heart/veeryam/courage, for you to be able to do the right thing. That is called saathvik nature. 'Saathvik' nature means 'strong-hearted'!!! Not self-defeating peacefulness! Gitaacharya didnt prescribe vegetarian food! Prove me wrong, if you dare!

R.Ramanathan said...

Dear Mr Jay Sekar,
I am Ramanathan. Let me first introduce myself. I work as a wireless Engineer in a reputed company in India. As for my Vedic credential i a have completed 52 prashnas in the Taittriya Shaka along with some portions of the Anga like shiksha, vyakarana, pratishakya, some shrauta. Still continuing to study the rest of the 30 prashnas.

You are right in concluding that the Vedas do not prohibit meat eating except in some exceptions. Like for example in the Achidra(TB 3rd ashtaka, 5 or 6th anuvaka. If the fire of the aahita agni is extinguished, then a list of alternates is given till the fire is rekindled after the punaradhana ceremony. In that an option of pouring ghee into ear of a goat is given. After that a brahmana should not eat goat meat. Similarly in the Aranyaka 1st prashna, when one performs the Aruna ketu chayana one is forbidden to eat sea creatures. Also in some soma yajna deeksha the yajamana is forbidden from eating meat.

But as you only say, eating meat sanctified in sacrifices i.e. shrauta karmas is sanctioned. Another alternative is eating meat given by a kshatriya after hunting(By the kshatriya). As did the Brahmanas who accompanied Yudhistra in Dwaitavana.

Now consider this. In this age how many have completed Adyayana with shadangas, setup the treta Agni with adhana(Many do not perform the basic aupasana with the grihya agni), do the agnihotra without fail, and then perform soma sacrifices where meat based offerings are predominant?. Also in this age where is the dharmic kshatriya who has his upanayana, adyayana etc and Rajyabisheka?. With the absence of these sources of legitimate meat, is it not better to abstain from it?

As for Rama eating meat he is kshatriya and as per his svadharma he is allowed to hunt for his country and sometimes other individuals who need support and of course for himself.

Also you know the chandogya shruti vaakya "Ahimsan sarvaa bootani anyatra theertebyaha". Do not hurt any beings except in case of sacred rites like sacrifices. So it follows that with the absence of legitimate dharmic sanctioned sources of meat it is better to not have it as per the above shruti vaakya. Even now i attend soma sacrifices and i know the yajamana and Ritwiks have a very small quantity "Maasha/Tila matra" as per the shrauta sutra of apastamba.

Even in Vanaprasta meat is allowed in cases where there is paucity of vegetable food. But again in kali vanaprasta is not possible. Hope this answers some of your queries

Regards
Ramanathan.R

R.Ramanathan said...

Mr Jay Sekhar as a side note, i know Mrs Jeyashree personally. Also i too am a shikha wearing vaidika, with karna veedana, and by the way i have been a chamasadhvaryu in a Vajapeya soma yajna and i know the Yajna samans also, and also the Kauthuma sama veda to some extent. The Soma Yajna's I've been to are not the "Gayathri Parivaar" type but are performed by proper niyama adhikaris, with shadanga adhyayana with "Pratyaksha pashu", not the pishta variety as quoted by somebody. In the remote villages of south India. As of now i am learning shrauta from a revered scholar from Kulitalai who himself is a Vajapeya Yaaji and is a shadanga adhyeeta till Gana paata. So when i am making an opinion i am not doing it with a predetermined conclusion. I have a basic knowledge of purva mimamsa and am undergoing a class on Sayana Vedha bhashya for the Taittriya. Hope my credentials are Ok for you.

This is my opinion on this topic.
1. I understand that Maamsa is not nishidda in kali too. Some puranas(Visnhu purana if im correct) though forbid it in shraddha for kali. Also it is the same purana that forbids Ashvamedha. And also the usage of the human, snake, deer, bull head in the Agnichayana mentioned in the 4th and 5th kandas of the Taittriya are changed.

2. I do not agree with the view that Shankara agreed to use pishta pashu. In fact he never touched karma kanda. Only Madhva has sanctioned it. But it is against the cannons of shrauta.

3. My only thing against meat eating is, that there is no proper dharmic source as of today. It is prohibited to get it from sellers for brahmanas. It is explicitly stated in the 3rd ashtaka 6 prashna of TB. Todays brahmanas may not have the necessary Tapas to counter the sins accruing from it. The reason is, not all perform the Vaishwadeva ceremony which ensure expiation for food related sins. But in pradesha's where meat eating can be desha achara like Bengal and other place you say, provided the brahmanas live up to the standards of vaidika aachara its ok.

4. I do not believe eating meat from a shop or hotel is correct and should be condemened.

5. Precluding all the above i think a safe diet would be veggie, though i hold its no sin if you eat non veg under strict vaidika aachara.

Jay Sekhar said...

@R.Ramanathan - I was very pleased/happy to see your reply. I, of course, am taking what you said about yourself for face value. Your response, at least proved to Ms. Jayashree that she was incorrect in making these posts falsely influencing her readers that it may NOT be per hindu scriptures to eat meat. Clearly, she must have by now understood the falsity in her inappropriate conclusions in this matter.

//You are right in concluding that the Vedas do not prohibit meat eating except in some exceptions...// & //But as you only say, eating meat sanctified in sacrifices i.e. shrauta karmas is sanctioned.// & //I understand that Maamsa is not nishidda in kali too....// ---- This proves my point and disproves Ms. Jayashree's incorrect arguments. I am sure by now the misunderstandings of Ms. Jayashree and her readers have been cleared with your response, since they refuse to accept mine.

//Also it is the same purana that forbids Ashvamedha.....// -- Per the sikha wearing gurus who have informed me, in Kali Yuga, the benefit of having performed Ashwamedha Yagnya is obtained by conducting 'Anaadha pretha Samskaara'. In 2011-2013, several birds have died and fell on my home property. I conducted their last rites for each such dead bird in my backyard, much to the disbelief and ridicule of my wife (Trust me, I am revealing this to you only since others would think I am mental if I were to tell this). When I asked one of my vedic brahmin practicing gurus, why the birds seem to always die and fall down on my property, this is what he had to say "...perhaps, they knew that falling dead there in their old age would benefit them with better rebirths or reaching higher lokas since there is a sad-brahmana there would would conduct their last rites.."

//My only thing against meat eating is, that there is no proper dharmic source as of today.....// ----- you are mistaken, there is Valmiki Ramayana and then there is Shraadha ceremony, wherein the meat pinda has to be offered and Brahmans have to eat meat to their hearts' content! Yudhristhra confirms this in Vyasa MB, and Agastya confirms this in Valmiki Ramayana.

//..........though i hold its no sin if you eat non veg under strict vaidika aachara.// - I hope Ms. Jayashree has taken notes.

R.Ramanathan said...

//My only thing against meat eating is, that there is no proper dharmic source as of today.....// /*----- you are mistaken, there is Valmiki Ramayana and then there is Shraadha ceremony, wherein the meat pinda has to be offered and Brahmans have to eat meat to their hearts' content! Yudhristhra confirms this in Vyasa MB, and Agastya confirms this in Valmiki Ramayana.*/

Yes but 2 points.
1. After the Agastya/vatapai-ilvala incident, i think Agastya himself prohibited meat in shraddha.

2. Even if we consider that the Itihasa/purana pramana's as not effective, as per the Dharma/grihya sutras, when inviting Brahmanas for eating in the shraddha they have to question them regarding their vedic knowledge, lineage etc. I bet most of the brahmanins that come today for eating are people who have retired and are looking for some income after retirement. They cannot utter basic mantras with svara properly. So feeding meat to such unqualified people can result in shraddha bhanga. And most fundamental of all, the shraddha has to be performed in the Grhiya agni where the daily aupasana is done. This is absent in most of the houses today. Of course there are exceptions. But on the whole it is true for 99% of the brahmanas. Most marriages are not performed as per the Ekagni kanda where all the rites necessary for aupasana are done. But when the grihasta does shraddha, vichana agni anusandhana is done on the day without the previous rites being done in marriage, which is of course not right. I am not sure in the present conditions where grihastas rely on the priest to even tell them how to do aachamana, whether it is safe to use meat because they do not know the purification mantras. From these aspects i feel for majority of the people meat in shraddha is not good. Also the puranas forbid it kali.

R.Ramanathan said...

By the way Jay Sekhar could you give me some intro about yourself and where are you now and what are you working as?

Unknown said...

I have heard in many discourses by highly qualified authorities on our Sastras and Sanatana Dharma, the following sloka or excerpts from this.

tarko 'pratiṣṭhaḥ śrutayo vibhinnā
nāsāv ṛṣir yasya mataṁ na bhinnam
dharmasya tattvaṁ nihitaṁ guhāyāṁ
mahājano yena gataḥ sa panthāḥ

Mahābhārata, Vana-parva (313.117)

Synonyms
tarkaḥ—dry argument; apratiṣṭhaḥ—not fixed; śrutayaḥ—Vedas; vibhinnāḥ—possessing different departments; na—not; asau—that; ṛṣiḥ—great sage; yasya—whose; matam—opinion; na—not; bhinnam—separate; dharmasya—of religious principles; tattvam—truth; nihitam—placed; guhāyām—in the heart of a realized person; mahā-janaḥ—self-realized predecessors; yena—by which way; gataḥ—acted; saḥ—that; panthāḥ—the pure, unadulterated path.

I will leave the interpretation of the above sloka to the esteemed readers of this blog. Mukkur Sri Lakshminarasimhachariar used an example often in his discourses to point this out. There is seemingly an apparent contradiction between two verses in our Sastras. In one place, it states "Jaamaataa Vishnuvat Poojyaaha" (1) and in an other place, it states, "Jaamaataa Dasamo Grahaha" (2). As you can see, it is saying praise/worship, like Vishnu, the son-in-law (1), and in an other (2), it intimates that as if it is not enough that we have nine planets (and their effects to deal with), we have a tenth one here in the form of this son-in-law. According to Mukkur's discourse, this apparant contradiction was presented to one of the previous pontiffs of Sri Ahobila Mutt, who was once asked whether a son-in-law whose behavior is not befitting of praise should also be praised based on (1). The response was, by mere translation and interpretation of the words, the true spirit (the underlying truth) is not clearly revealed here. The meaning of "Jaamaataa Vishnuvat Poojyaaha" should be understood as "Jaamaataa Vishnuvat Sthitaaha Poojyaaha". Now the purport of the verse is clear with the word he added - Sthitaaha (i.e. As long as the son-in-law conducts himself with praise-worthy behavior, like Vishnu, he is worthy of praise).

Dear Sri R. Ramanathan and Smt. Jayasree:
The yeoman service you are doing by sharing your breadth of knowledge, research, and perspectives are well serving the multitude of true seekers. My pranams.

Jay Sekhar said...

@R.Ramanathan - //Yes but 2 points. 1. After the Agastya/vatapai-ilvala incident, i think Agastya himself prohibited meat in shraddha.// ---- No, not true. Per Valmiki Ramayana, In the sarga following where Vatapi & Ilvala history was mentioned, Agastya does feed Rama et all with fruits & tubers since that was all he had in his ashram at that time. But there is no mention of Agastya discussing meat eating or veg food with Rama et all. If you have seen a sloka from valmiki ramayana wherein your thought is mentioned, then do provide.

Your point # 2. is explaining why brahmins don't eat meat today, especially in a Shraddha ceremony, but does not contest the fact that our vedic scriptures permit meat eating. I do not disagree with you here.

Finally, you asked about me - Go Brahmaneeybha-ha Shubham Bahavatu! Haritasa, Ambrariisha Yuvanaashva Triya Rusha Pravaraanvita, Aapastambha-Sutra Krishna Yajur-shaka Adhyaayii, Sriman Haritasa Gotrasya Vijaya RaviSekhara Sharma Ahambho Abhi vadayee.

Jay Sekhar said...

@Unknown - you posted about a sanskrit sloka, and ended up proving a concept unrelated to either Ms. Jayashree's post or about the discussions she & I had thereafter in these comments.

Then you state that Ms. Jayashree's service by sharing her false ideas/misconceptions is well serving the multitude of truth seekers. As you have seen above, Ms. Jayashree was wrong about her argument that Sanatana Dharma permits meat eating. Mr. Ramanathan's comments should be read by you to understand the mistakes she made in arriving at her false conclusions.

Unknown said...

@Jay Sekhar - I read the subject post, the title of which is "Does Sanatana Dharma support eating meat?" The question is, does it "support", not "permit", eating meat. Smt. Jayasree's arguments and the supporting evidence she has placed are lucid. There is nothing in Sri. Ramanathan's comments that are contradictory to what she has stated. As far as I understood all of these and the counter-arguments posed, Does it permit? - yes, with conditions. Does it support? - In specific circumstances and with strict conditions. The reason for me quoting the sloka from MB, is in situations such as these, follow the precedent/path set by MahaJana. They are able to show unbiased and time-relevant (kali age) application of scriptures. In your case, if your MahaJana have shown you the path that supports eating meat, please to your heart's content. In our case, MahaJana quoted by Smt. Jayasree and Sri. Ramanathan are clearly showing us a path otherwise.

R.Ramanathan said...

Mr Jay Sekhar,
I dont think Mrs Jayashree is doing any dis-service. She state's her opinion based on her studies. The point is today's Hinduism is mainly Puranic in nature. Today's overwhelming general opinion would be that "Sanatana dharma does not support meat eating". This is based mainly on the puranic statements on Yajnas, like those found in the Bhagavata that be-little them. Very few people go deep into the Vedas and shastras. Very few still know people who perform such Yajnas.

Even many ghanapatis today wont accept it today. So though i agree with you that there is no blanket prohibition in our shastras regarding eating meat. It is not feasible for 99% of Brahamanas. So what i feel is in effect my argument and Mrs Jayashree's argument though are different in terms of shastraic interpretation, the results is one. Even i cannot eat it. Though i have eaten it in Yajna's, as a prasadam. But i think in the light of today's situation better avoid it is my idea

Jay Sekhar said...

@Unknown - Yes, the post is about, as you quoted the title, 'Does Sanatana Dharma support eating meat?'. As you yourself acknowledged // As far as I understood all of these and the counter-arguments posed, Does it permit? - yes, with conditions. Does it support? - In specific circumstances and with strict conditions.// ----- This is not what Ms. Jayashree is concluding. Her point is the opposite! Secondly, there is no concept or context called or explained as 'MahaJana' in Sanatana Dharma. So your commentary on acceptance of or by MahaJana is irrelevant and not applicable in Sanatana Dharma. At a minimum, Ms. JayaShree needs to state at least your conclusions, which I copied and pasted above, in her post.

Jay Sekhar said...

@Mr. Ramanathan - //So though i agree with you that there is no blanket prohibition in our shastras regarding eating meat// & //Even i cannot eat it. Though i have eaten it in Yajna's, as a prasadam.// ---- I agree with you.

//So what i feel is in effect my argument and Mrs Jayashree's argument though are different in terms of shastraic interpretation, the results is one.// --- No, her argument and the point she is making with her posts is that Sanatana Dharma does not permit meat eating, which you as well as I as well as 'Unknown' disagree with. So, the result is not the same.

//I dont think Mrs Jayashree is doing any dis-service. // ---- yes, she is, because unlike you or unlike 'Unknown', she is not discussing what truly Sanatana Dharma shaastras say about meat eating. She is posting only those vedic scripture verses which push her agenda on abstaining from meat eating. If she were to state your acknowledgement on meat eating in vedic scriptures or 'Unknown's' acknowledge on permission to eat meat in vedic scriptures, then I shall agree with you that she is not doing dis-service by these posts.

jayasree said...

The only falsity, the worst kind of falsity and the abhorable falsity in the entire discussion above is the claim by Mr Jay Sekhar that Rama ate meat during exile according to Valmiki Ramayana. If he believes in Valmiki’s words, he must accept what Valmiki wrote in many verses at the time of exile when Rama promised to avoid meat during exile.

At the time of taking leave of his mother Kausalya, Rama makes this statement that he will live like a Muni “leaving off meat and living with roots, fruits and honey.” In verse 2-20-29, he says,

चतुर्दश हि वर्षाणि वत्स्यामि विजने वने |
मधु मूल फलैः जीवन् हित्वा मुनिवद् आमिषम् ||
vatsyaami = I shall live
vane = in forest;
vijane = bereft of people
munivat = like sage
chaturdasha = fourteen
varshhaaNi = years
hitvaa = leaving off
aamishham = meat;
jiivan = living
madhu muulaphalaiH = with honey; roots and fruits.

Meaning:- "I shall live in a solitary forest like a sage for fourteen years, leaving off meat and living with roots, fruits and honey"

There is clear mention of “Hitvaa Munivad Aamisham”
Like Munis, leaving off meat.

Rama is one who never says anything twice. RAmo Dwir na abhi bhashathe. (Rama tells this quality of himself to Kaikeyi to make her spell out the boons she had just then asked from Dasharatha - chapter 2-18-30). It means that if Rama says something, that is final; there is no going back. This vachan of Rama is the core of many a teaching of Purvacharyas to show how one will be protected by Rama if one takes refuge in him. Rama will never go back on his word.

Such a Rama who has told his mother that he will abstain from meat during vanvaas, cannot go back on his word. Rama is a Satyavaan – a quality that is told as foremost by Dasharatha in the conversation with Kaikeyi that preceded the event of Kaikeyi asking those dreadful boons. If there are passages contradictory to this promise, one must apply one’s mind to untangle the contradiction in tune with this promise that Rama had made. If as Mr Jay thinks that Rama ate meat during exile, that goes against what Valmiki had written earlier in his kavya; this goes against the very characterisation of Rama – that of a Satyavaan, an adherer to his word.

(continued)

jayasree said...

Let us see the other verses from Valmiki on how there were stronger indications on vegetarian food taken by Rama during his vanvaas.

The very idea behind Kaikeyi asking Rama to go to forest is to make him live as an ascetic by wearing deer skin and barks and subsisting on fruits and tubers (the purpose of hunting deer is known from this verse in 2-11-26). In that verse, she expresses her condition that "Rama has to take refuge in the forest of Dandaka for fourteen years and let him become an ascetic wearing rags, deer skin and matted hair".

On hearing this from Kaikeyi, Dasharatha lamets how Rama can survive on ‘vanyam aahaaram” that constitutes ‘astringent bitter and pungent wild foods?’ “कषायाणि तिक्तानि कटुकानि च भक्षयन्वन्यमाहारम्” (2-12-99). Meat of deer or some animal is not the vanyam aahaaram mentioned here.

Kaikeyi wanted Rama to be a wanderer, an ascetic wearing deer skin and subsisting on the food got from the trees and plants of the forest. Rama accepts this and expresses this not once but twice to his mother while taking leave of her. After telling “hitvaa aamisham” (not taking meat) in verse 2-20-29, he again repeats it in 31st verse “"I have to satisfy with the things existing in the forest and subsist with roots and fruits in a solitary forest for fourteen years." (Vanyaani phala moolau)

स ष्ट्चाअष्टौ च वर्षाणि वत्स्यामि विजने वने |
आसेवमानो वन्यानि फलमूलैश्च चर्तयन् (2-20-29)

He further proceeds to tells this vow to Lakshmana that all the pots of water kept for his coronation has to be used for his bath to take up the vow of asceticism (tapasye Vratha snaanam) (2-22-27). A tapasvi or a Muni is one who desists from meat is what Yudhistira also says in chapter 115 of Anusasana parva of MB (“These righteous men who, from the time of birth, abstain from honey and meat and wine, are regarded as Munis”)

The same idea of what Rama has to eat in the forest is echoed by Kausalya. She asks, “While the dependants and the servants of Lord Rama eat pleasant foods all the while, how can he eat roots and fruits himself in the forest ?" (“Bhokshayate Muula phalaani” 2-24- 3)
In return Rama tells his mother to subsist on “niyataahaara” – temperate food during his absence. (2-24-29). So the son and the mother decided to live on lean food of a tapaswi during the exile period.

(continued)

jayasree said...

Not to be behind them is Sita who also promises to live on fruits and tubers of the forest. “I shall live only on roots and fruits always, no doubt”. (2-27-15)

Rama tries to desist her from following him to the forest by telling about the kind of food they will have to eat in the forest. It is not meat but the fruits fallen from the trees; as ascetics they cannot even pluck the fruits and eat. (phalai vrukshaavapathithai) “"Oh, Sita! With mind disciplined day and night, one has to necessarily satisfy oneself with fruits fallen from trees. Hence, living in a forest is a suffering." अहोरात्रम् च सन्तोषः कर्तव्यो नियतात्मना |
फलैर्वृक्षावपतितैः सीते दुःखमतो वनम् || (2-28-12)

Rama further goes on to say how there will be paucity of even these fruits (edible fruits fallen from trees) when he says "Oh, Sita the princess of Mithila! Fasting is to be done according to one's stamina. Clothes of bark are to be worn and mass of matted hair has to be worn on the head." (2-28-13).

Why does he say, fasting according to one’s stamina? Depending on the availability of food (fallen fruits), the one who can withstand hunger can take less and leave out the rest to the hungrier one. They did not intend to satisfy their hunger by killing a deer and eating it. Their vanvaas was a period of tapas. By sending Rama to the forest, Kaikeyi wanted them to starve and eat astringent fruits that have fallen from trees. In that scenario, there is absolutely no scope for eating meat.

Sita readily accepts to these conditions of vanvaas when she says, "Leaves, tubers and fruits either a little or abundant in quantity brought and given by you yourself will be like nectar to me." (2-30-15)

पत्रम् मूलम् फलम् यत् त्वम् अल्पम् वा यदि वा बहु |
दास्यसि स्वयम् आहृत्य तन् मे अमृत रस उपमम् || २-३०-१५

15. yat = which; patram = leaf; muulam = tuber; phalam = fruit; alpam vaa = either a little; yadivaa = or; bahu = abundant; aahR^itya = brought; daasyasi = given by; tvam = you; svayam = yourself; tat = that; bhavet = will be; amR^itarasopamam = like nectar; me = to me.

Where is talk of meat here?

(continued)

jayasree said...

Again Sita reiterates this in the next verse by saying, "Enjoying the flowers and fruits belonging to various seasons there, I shall neither recollect my mother nor father nor my home."

This shows that they have to eat different kinds of fruits available in different seasons.
This kind of talk about the food in exile continues as we can see Lakshmana telling Rama that he will walk in the front with his bow and arrow and a spade and a basket to collect tubers, fruits and other things (phalaani, muulaani anyaanicha). If they were to eat meat also, Lakshmana could have as well told that he would hunt the animals with his bow and bring its meat to Rama for eating. He had never mentioned that. And they were never supposed to eat meat during their stay in the forest. In that scenario, the verse 2-55-33 on Cherathu Yamunaavane cannot refer to eating meat of the deer they had killed but it could refer to the munching of the fruits that Sita collected on the way.

{The hunting of sacred deer has its obvious purpose – of procuring deer skin for wrapping them. Dress of deer skin is what Kaikeyi insisted in verses 2-18-37, 2-19-2 and 2-19-4.
In 2-22-13, Rama repeats this wish of Kaikeyi to Lakshmana by telling that Kaikeyi will be mentally happy (manassukham) if he lives in the forest draped with deer skin (chiiraajina dhare )}


Lakshmana continues to tell Rama, “Taking my bow and arrows and carrying a spade and a basket, I will walk in front of you showing the path." (2-31-23)

"I will procure for you for all time the tubers, fruits and other things which are good food stuffs available in the forest for sages." (2-31-24).

Even Dasharatha wanted to send his granary to Rama on his exile (Dhaanyakosha)
"Let the granary and the treasury belonging to me be sent to Rama residing in the uninhabited forest." (2-36-7). Why should he send grains if Rama can be at ease with eating the flesh of the animals in the forest?

That Rama was made to live as an ascetic is again made out by Valmiki in chapter 2-73-3 when Bharata admonishes his mother by telling that she made Dasharatha die and Rama to live as an ascetic.

Even in the shraddham or offering of libations to Dasharatha, Rama offered food balls made of Ingudi pulp and Badari pulp prepared by Sita. There was no meat in that offering. Ingudi and Badari fruits were available in their surroundings, so also the sacred deer. If offering meat in shraddham was in practice, Rama could have asked Laskhmna to fetch a deer and Sita to cook it. He didn’t do so But he asked Lakshmana to do that in verse 2-56-22 for offering in a purifactory ceremony and not for filling their stomach.

(continued)

jayasree said...

The bottom-line is – if one wants to eat meat, it is their choice. But let them not bring in Rama or Vedic texts to justify their meat eating habit. There is Dharma within Dharma in many a context in life. That parama Dharma or core Dharma is Ahimsa. Ahimsa springs from compassion or kindness or mercy. This is the Dharma of Rama also.

Sita expresses this to Hanuman in Sundara khandam. She says आनृशंस्यम् परो धर्मः (Kindness is the supreme Dharma) त्वत्त एव मया श्रुतः (this was heard by me from Rama) (5-38-41).

Rama once expressed to Sita that kindness to others is his supreme Dharma. He is one who cannot bear the sufferings of others. (para- dhukkam sahiyaamai). Is that mercy only for others and not for herself, asks Sita to Hanuman. This mercy and compassion is the core attribute of Paramatman. Based on this only the verse Vaishnava janato thene kahiye, je peedu paraayi jane re – was formed.

It is because Paramatman is compassionate He is showing up to Mr Jay the karmic connection behind the numerous dead birds falling in his place – that one who is in the path of spirituality should shun any suffering to any beings. The numerous lives that found their graveyard in his stomach were screaming for mercy by falling down in his courtyard as a reminder. If he fails to read the Karmic message of this indication by Kala Purusha, he may not get another chance to get reminded and do the course correction.

jayasree said...

I will be writing on all the controversial verses on meat eating in Valmiki Ramayana, in the course of this series on merits of abstention from meat.

Jay Sekhar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jay Sekhar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jay Sekhar said...

First of all, Ms. Jayashree lost all credibility when she couldn't defend her conclusion she reached in the above post on Does Sanatana Dharma permit eating meat and had to rope in a Mr. Ramanathan to do the talking instead of her. He ended up proving her wrong, while also providing his own personal opinion that he prefers to abstain from eating meat.

Now, Ms. Jayashree wishes to launch a tirade on valmiki Ramayana and clearly demonstrated how much effort she puts into her disagreement on the straight forward meaning of the two words 'Cherathu Yamunaavane' in the context of that sloka. Anyone who read Valmiki Ramayana Sanskrit version knows Rama ate meat & so did Agastya. Ms. Jayashree's ego & half-baked knowledge prevents her from taking Valmiki literally here. Proof of her ill-understanding of Valmiki Ramayana is 1) her refusal to take meaning of the Sanskrit words written by Valmiki, and 2) the difficulty she imposes on herself to just reiterate what Rama told Kausalya, what he & Sita and Lakshmana discussed etc. then coming up with her analyses on what COULD they have meant and 3) then her coming up with her INTERPRETATIONS of what the two words from rama COULD HAVE MEANT instead of taking their straght forward meaning, and finally 4) because she confuses English word 'Lie' with Sanskrit word 'Satya'. There are not one & the same. Yes a-satya is a sin in Sanatana Dharma, but Rama did not commit asatya in Valmiki Ramayana (ask me why & I shall be glad to educate you since you are clearly in desperate need of it!!)

Of course, she also attacked me that I am falsifying what Valmiki wrote. Let's see, who is taking Valmiki's words literally without coming up with 'COULD HAVE's and interpretations? Me. Who is going to great lengths in telling us about what Rama 'COULD HAVE MEANT' by his words and dumping on rest of us her INTERPRETATIONS of not just the sloka but the context also? Ms. Jayashree. It is clear who is trying their best to falsify in the worst possible way and abhodably so what Valmiki explained with his words here!! Valmiki clearly explained how Lakshmana cooked meat also.

The bottom-line is – if one does not want to eat meat, it is their choice. But let them not bring in Rama or Vedic texts to justify their meat-abstaining habit. Valmiki clearly stated that Rama at meat. Rama clearly explains why he was offering ingudi pindam for Dasharatha in Valmiki Ramayana instead of other foods. Rama also clearly explains to Lakshmana meat eating habits of Agastya, who pretty much is dhamra personified also! There is Dharma within Dharma in many a context in life. That parama Dharma or core Dharma as Ahimsa has already been disproved by me above, clearly for which Ms. Jayashree had no answer. 'Dharma Himsa Thathaiva cha'! There IS himsa in adherence to vedic dharma, and ONLY a fool would claim that ahimsa is parama dharma. Ahimsa springs from compassion or kindness or mercy. This is the Dharma of Rama also, but just a part of his larger Kshaatra dharma, wherein committing himsa as punishment of evil by killing them (Rakshaasas or Vaali) has a much greater role!

At the end, it is clear Ms. Jayashree will go to any lengths, such as twisting and turning what could have been straight forward meaning of words in slokas, just to prove her own interpretation to be the only true meaning, because she has a mental block towards meat eating, that's all. However, given she couldn't either defend her conclusion in her blog post above or in her repeated redundant falsity that ahimsa is parama dharma, her blog posts shouldn't be given importance and read by educated and the wise.