In Buddhism, the views on vegetarianism vary from school to school. Attitudes about vegetarianism vary from sect to sect as well as from individual to individual. Vegetarianism was not a part of the early Buddhist tradition and it is unlikely the historical Buddha was a vegetarian. In the earliest recording of his teachings, the Tripitaka, the Buddha did not categorically forbid his disciples to eat meat. In Mahayana Buddhism, there are several Sanskrit texts where the Buddha instructs his followers to avoid meat. However, each branch of Mahayana Buddhism select what sutra to follow, the majority of Tibetan and Japanese Buddhism do eat, while most of Chinese Buddhism do not eat meat. Buddhists who are vegetarians have a simple and compelling argument to support their case. Eating meat encourages an industry that causes cruelty and death to millions of animals and truly compassionate person would wish to stop all this suffering.
ABOUT VEGETARIAN TIMES
The love for all living creatures is the most noble attribute of man.
—Charles Darwin, English naturalist (1809–1882)
Wild animals never kill for sport. Man is the only one to whom the torture and death of his fellow creatures is amusing in itself.
—James A. Froude, English historian (1818–1894)
If you visit the killing floor of a slaughterhouse, it will brand your soul for life.
—Howard Lyman, author of Mad Cowboy
A man can live and be healthy without killing animals for food; therefore, if he eats meat, he participates in taking animal life merely for the sake of his appetite. And to act so is immoral.
—Leo Tolstoy, Russian novelist (1828–1910)