Would you kill anyone? Then why would you kill an animal or bird for you to quench your hunger when there are several other options available?
The case for vegetarianism is neither a choice nor is it religious. It is an absolute necessity on the spiritual path. Just as a space vehicle needs to abandon its payloads at different stages of its journey to reach its destination orbit, so do we need to abandon our ways and methods as we grow up – not just grow old – and learn to live intelligently.
This is not about God and it is not about sinning, it is about winning in Life. The real victory in Life is about conquering ourselves. Go inward. Go find your Self within you. When you understand that there is no difference between you who abets the killing of innocent species, in a way, by being willing to consume them, and those that aid and abet the perpetrators of terror in the world, you will want to reconsider your meal preferences. Being vegetarian is not even a belief. Don’t believe anything. Just feel it. Feel the crudeness in wanting to eat something that has been killed to feed you.
What did Osama Bin Laden and his cohorts do? What happened on 26/11 in Mumbai? And in London, Greece, Indonesia and keeps happening weekly in Pakistan? Some ‘misguided’ few killed innocent living beings to feed their egos, to satiate their dogmatic beliefs that killing is religious retribution. You call them stupid. Then what are you? Feel the cruelty churn within you. Arise. Awake.
I too ate non-vegetarian food until about 11 years ago. And then one day I simply gave it all up. My trigger was my then 9-year-old daughter asking me: “Papa, why do you eat an animal?” I have since discovered that what you did so far need not burden you with guilt. What you will do now is important. When you fly international sectors, especially out of India, you often encounter a meal option called ‘Jain’. Now Jainism is an old religion. All their 24 teachers, who they call ‘thirthankaras’, were warriors and meat eaters. They killed for food. But when they became aware, through their awakening, they converted their primal energy to a deep love for all forms of creation. They even threw out God and prayer. Just as Buddhism did. As Osho, the Master, has said, “When you threw out God and prayer, what’s left of religion? I want you to understand it: the moment God and prayer are discarded, the only thing that is left is to go in. Buddha also was from the warrior caste, son of a King, trained to kill. He was not a vegetarian. But when meditation started blossoming in him, just as a by-product the vegetarian idea came into his being: you cannot kill animals for eating, you cannot destroy life. While every kind of delicious food is available, what is the need to kill living beings?” So, Jainism and Buddhism are not a religion in that sense. They are a means to an awakening. For thousands of years now, Jains and Buddhists are vegetarians. Not because they are a sect or a cult. But because they are aware.
Become aware. Know what you are doing. Go inward. Seek the cause of all creation within__within you. It is the same breath that powers your children and keeps them alive that chicken and lamb and cows and pigs and shrimp and fish__all need to stay alive. Would you want someone to take your childrens’ Life-giving source away? Then why would you want to take away the same source from other creations of Life? Drop anchor, find your Self, become the Buddha that you are born to be!