Vegetarian Society of the United Kingdom - Millions of people around the world live without meat or fish and they probably each have their own reasons for doing so. However, most vegetarians would agree that: It’s better for animals. Around two million land animals are slaughtered every day in the UK alone, just so that people can eat their flesh.
It’s more sustainable. Growing grains and pulses to feed to animals is much less efficient than eating them ourselves. The livestock industry uses huge amounts of land, water and fossil fuels, while producing 18% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions and all sorts of other pollution.
It’s a healthy option. A balanced vegetarian diet is one of the healthiest diets around.
VEGETARIANISM AN ESSENTIAL KEY TO YOGA - Yoga aims at disciplining the body and mind. Health of the body and mind depends on the observance of the laws of right living. The human being is herbivorous and frugivorous. This, any other food is against the law of nature. Physical health is dependent on the food we take. If we are not conscious and careful about the nourishment of the body, we impoverish the whole system. The Body is the Temple of God in which the Holy of Holies dwells. How, therefore, can any impurity be admitted into this pure temple? This body is the vehicle of the Divine to manifest Himself in His true glory. If the blood stream is polluted by the blood of animals, no light can ever shine in the function of the heart and this this Divine Temple is darkened. Judaism and Vegetarianism
-And God said, behold I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yeilding seed, to you it shall be for food. And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat [=food]: and it was so.Genesis 1, 29 & 30
It is interesting to note that legislation was once introduced by Mordecai Ben Porat in the Israeli Knesset (Parliament) proposing to outlaw meat-eating! Unfortunately, the legislation did not pass; unfortunate because this would indeed have been an interesting social experiment and Israel could indeed stand head and shoulders above all nations in its respect towards animals.
According to the UNIVERSAL JEWISH ENCYCLOPEDIA
, 1939 -The Jewish attitude toward animals has always been governed by the consideration that they, too, are God's creatures...[and] the obligation to respect and consider the feelings and needs of these lower creatures...The non-canonical...writings strongly urge kindness toward animals, declaring that one who harms an animal harms his own soul". [1:330]
According the ENCYCLOPAEDIA JUDAICA, 1974: -In later rabbinic literature,...great prominence is also given to demonstrating God's mercy to animals, and to the importance of not causing them pain. ...The principle of kindness to animals...is as though God's treatment of man will be according to [people's] treatment of animals".
Hindu / Hare Krishna / Sikh / Jain
HINDU-Having well considered the origin of flesh-foods, and the cruelty of fettering and slaying corporeal beings, let man entirely abstain from eating flesh. - Manusmriti 5.49
Hare Krishnas in War-Torn Russia -Working in a makeshift kitchen with ingredients they drag around town in a 10-years-old discarded Russian ambulance, Krishna members serve simple vegetarian meals and bake what some people consider the best bread in Grozny. "I know what Americans often think of us," Mr. Makarov said. "They think we are some sort of annoying cult. But we are not. Our goals are all spiritual. If people want to learn more about us that is great. But usually they just want food. And that's the reason we came here."
A NAMDHARI SIKH'S TESTIMONY-Meat-eaters having no hatred for bloodshed develop in themselves an indifferent attitude to the sufferings and pains of others. The future or the world lies with men of sober habits, industrious nature, and balanced minds, loving all and hating none. These qualities can only be developed with a simple diet of vegetables, milk, milk products, cereals, nuts, and fruits. Namdharis strictly believe that every Saviour of humanity was a vegetarian and that vegetarianism can help greatly in saving the world from coming destruction and in establishing an everlasting pence.JAIN-Ahimsa
says that we have no right to inflict suffering and death onto another living creature and, that if harmlessness were the keynote of our lives, then this would do more to produce harmonious conditions than any other discipline. Ahimsa is the basic principle on which the Jaina moral code is built. In simple words, 'Live and let live' is the creed of Jainism. As every one of us wants to live, enjoy pleasures, and escape pain, so every other living being wants to live, enjoy comforts, and avoid pain. If we want to exercise our right to live, we must concede the same right to others as well. It is a simple moral law of reciprocity. Naturally man has no right to slaughter animals for his food or for his pleasure. If he does so by his superiority in the cadre of biological evolution, his action is not justifiable in any way. And if he wants to lend a life of justice and equity in society, he must have the highest respect for the entire animal world, nay the sanctity of life as such. This necessitates that he must take to a vegetarian diet.
Thakar Singh on the Karma of Vegetarianism
-Question: Master, we all know that it's very crucial to abstain from the eating of meat because this increases our karmas, but can you explain in more detail the reasons for becoming vegetarian? Thakar Singh: We are not to increase our burden of karmas, as you have already said. There is value in every kind of thing we use in this world. In the same way, if we can maintain our life very simply, with the lower cost of this greenery, then why should we attract so much burden and payment of karma? We are only allowed to have the fruit of the trees and whatever is grown on the table of this earth with the least burden. But when we eat some greenery or fruit everything is wonderful. If you look at fruit that is ripe the colors tell you so wonderfully that it is ripe. A fragrance is also available and when you smell it you enjoy it and even when you remember the smell you can enjoy. Your heart is also enjoying and your mind and body are at peace. So my dear, God has all sympathy for us and if He has recommended some things for us then we should accept them and we should not impose our minds and intellects into His wisdom. That is why in the Bible and all other scriptures man has been very clearly told, "don't do this--do only this." Everything is clearly explained to us. Why don't we accept these commandments? Islamic Duty of Compassion Towards Animals
-All creatures on earth are sentient beings. "There is not an animal on earth, nor a bird that flies on its wings - but they are communities like you." (The Quran, 6:38)
"The Holy Prophet Muhammad (S) was asked by his copmpanions if kindness to animals was rewarded in the life hereafter. He replied: 'Yes, there is a meritorious reward for kindness to every living creature'." (Bukhari)
"The Holy Prophet (S) condemned those who pinion or restrain animals in any other way for the purpose of target shooting. (Al-Masburah and Al-Mujaththamah)." (Muslim) "The Holy Prophet (S)
said: 'It is a great sin for man to imprison those animals which are in his power'." (Muslim)
There are numerous Islamic laws forbidding vivisection (Al-muthia) on a live animal. IBn Umar reported the Holy Prophet (S) as having condemned those who mutilate any part of an animals body while it is alive. (Ahmad and other authorities)
CHRISTIANITY-SAINT BASILE THE GREAT
-Love all God's creatures, the animals, the plants. Love everything to perceive the divine mystery in all. Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821-1881)
(320-79 A.D.) Bishop of Cesarea, adjures : If one lives soberly. "The animals will be secure; they will never pour forth their blood; men will never cause beasts to die; the knives of cooks will be useless; and the table will be loaded with the fruits given us by nature, and we will be content." "There never was wine in the Terrestrial Paradise ; they never sacrificed animals ; they never ate meat ; wine was only invented after the Deluge,"
The infliction of cruelty with a clear conscience is a delight to moralists. That is why they invented hell.Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)
If we understand and feel that the greatest act of devotion and worship to God is not to harm any of His beings, we are loving God. Meher Baba (1894-1969)
Ellen White, co-founder Seventh Day Adventists (1896) -The diet of animals is vegetables and grains. Must the vegetables be animalized, must they be incorporated into the system of animals, before we get them? Must we obtain our vegetable diet by eating the flesh of dead creatures? God provided fruit in its natural state for our first parents. He gave to Adam charge over the garden, to dress it, and to care for it, saying, "To you it shall be for meat." One animal was not to destroy another animal for food." Vegetables, fruits, and grains should compose our diet. Not an ounce of flesh meat should enter our stomachs. The eating of flesh is unnatural. We are to return to God's original purpose in the creation of man.
Buddha vegetarian? - Again, there may be some people in the future who .. . being under the influence of the taste for meat will string together in various ways sophistic arguments to defend meat eating . But... meat eating in any form, in any manncr, and in any place is unconditionally and once for all prohibited... Meat eating I have not permitted to anyone, I do not permit, I will not permit . - Lankavatara