Let us observe and please see with the eyes of wisdom, simplicity, non-bias, indiscrimination and non-clinging. Then, right here and now, in front of our eyes, all beings, all things all over the vast universe are displaying a vigorous vitality of life, most sacred, mystical and unexplainable with words.
The whole universe, many things along with us compose a beat of spontaneity in every second, every minute continuously without rests. We can see that there is nothing separating from one another. This profound vitality of life is displaying right within a being, a thing, all kinds and the whole universe. We are one with space, blue sky, clear water, soil, rocks, mountains, flowers and leaves, vegetation, sentient and non-sentient beings, all kinds, all things, all colors, all forms, etc.. Together, all are participating in an activity and contributing their innate ability in order to paint a picture filled with liveliness of utmost marvel and wonder.
Simultaneously, together we are singing and composing a session of “Sing and Compose the music of life”. This session is endlessly long and filled with our innate musical instruments in the most natural way and suitable with each position, circumstance, action of all people, all things, including the worms, the ants. No matter how small or how large, no one is incomplete in playing the role of a wonderful musician, a singer so that the musical piece of life is marveled with many rhythmic beats prolonging infinitely. There are no inscriptions or spoken words that can completely describe the supreme, the holiness of this energetic musical piece! Strangely and honorably, it is unbelievably that we, ourselves, are also present, attentive and using that same profound energy and life.
Through the small proof as follow, we will understand and clearly see that, between us and many things, universe, many scenes, many beings, etc., we all lie within a state of restrictions, yet very spontaneous in an intimate relationship, a close tie in which we cannot lack each other for a second, a minute.
Do we know that, in our lives, we cannot lack the people who grow rice, plant vegetables, plant flowers and fruits so that we can have food each day? We cannot lack the people who make fabrics, make clothes or make useful, basic necessities for our lives. We need all technicians, farmers, laborers, marketers. We need the people who build houses, bridges, sewages, roads. We cannot lack the air, the vast space, the sunshine, the moon, land, water, etc...
Generally, we need all beings, all things around us, just like we need the whole universe.
Since we cannot lack each other and part from each other, even though separated only by a hair, are we then unified with one another? If so, then we are all beings, all things, and the great universe. This is true as in the phrase:
“One is All, All is One”
Since we are one another and none of us can lack others in life, then why don’t we respect, value, love, have compassion with each other? And if we understood and loved all beings just like we love ourselves, then, of course, we would never harm any thing that are, together with us, present and displaying vitality with an inexpressible, complete and absolute energy. When we understood completely, who then would be envious of others? Who would be jealous of others? Who would be vengeful and take revenge on others? Who would be evil toward others? And who would eat the flesh of others? Therefore, should we take the lives of the animals in order to feast ourselves anymore? We should know that being sentient living things then all have the brain and the nervous system that are same like ours. And thus, they are very sensitive to pain when being crudely touches, not to mention the bloodshed which causes unimaginable suffering.
Why do we always protect our own lives, always afraid of pain, of bloodshed, of death, and yet we don’t think of the beings that are the same as us? They, too, need to protect their lives and afraid of pain and death just like us.
Pathetically, it is due to the retribution of karmas, the cause and effect, and ignorance that they reincarnated as animals. Being an animal, their ignorance is deeper than that of human. They cannot speak human language and, because of their stupidity, they are bullied by human. People use their intelligence and evil to take away the lives of the inferior beings in order to feast. However, people are not aware of the retribution with the comparable price for those evil acts. That is, eating one bite means paying back with an equivalency for that one bite.
The laws of cause and effect and the absolute equality in Buddhism are never wrong. Whatever cause one is implanted, then the equal effect will be merited. Implanting a righteous cause as in doing a good deed, a righteous effect will be gained. Implanting a cause of an executioner so that we can eat animal flesh, then the effect is being reincarnated as animal in order to pay back with our life for the very life that was taken away from the animals that got eaten by us. We keep on eating each other within this unending cycle of reincarnation because of owing each other with the debt of life. All because we don’t clearly know the whole truth or even if knowing the partial truth, we don’t have the courage to accept the painful reality in front of our eyes which is:
“Having eaten, then there must be retribution”
But among us, accounting from innumerous previous lives until today, can anyone proudly say that
“We have never eaten the flesh of sentient beings”?
Since we clearly know that everyone has been eaten meat products and has been reincarnated as animal and then as human, going round and round as such, within this animal kingdom, there must be our close friends or relatives if they have not yet get liberated. There also must be our ancestors, grandparents, parents, siblings, relatives from father and mother sides, friends, etc. from many previous lives and eons until this day, and they are still circling in that wheel of reincarnation. Presently, right in front of our eyes, we are proving a horrible truth that, possibly, it is our close entourage, no other strangers, being punished as animal reincarnation. Can anyone guarantee that all of our close entourage from many lives and eons have already been liberated? If they have not been liberated and are still being punished, then it is all because of their ignorance, incomprehension, lacking of righteous practice and non-enlightenment.
In order to end this most complicated and complex phenomenon, through Buddhism, we clearly understand the laws of cause and effect as well as the retribution of karmas. We also have the way to enlightenment, liberating ourselves and our loved ones, the entirety of living beings from punishments, unending reincarnation and cycle of life and death. Therefore, what are we waiting for other than study and practice to start correcting the wrongs of ignorance, and hence, being compassionate to ourselves by not feasting on the living beings any longer.
“If having not eaten, then shall have no retribution
If having not owed anyone, then no one shall ask for pay back”
If able to practice as such, then we are no longer volunteering to be animals through many lives and using our stomach as a cemetery burying many animal lives which include our loved ones.
If we refuse to feast on the living beings, then, of course, the markets, the restaurants, the communities would no longer buy and sell livestock nor kill animals. Additionally, we are able to end an evil, thoughtless deed that is conducted without the agreement of the victims being bullied by us, taken advantage of and unreasonably sacrificing for the sellers as well as the buyers.
We no longer feast on meat products in order to express compassion towards ourselves and all sentient beings.
If possible, we can be on veggie fasting, the more the better. We can practice veggie fasting at most two days a month, then four days, then increase to ten days and continue increasing until we are able to fast on vegetable for life. Vegetarian diet is just as nutritious as meat-seafood diet. If we put effort into trying to search and to understand, then, all kinds of grains, vegetables and fruits are containing much nutrition full with calories that support our physical bodies.
Vegetarian diet yields fewer illnesses
Vegetarian diet increases longevity
Vegetarian diet provides youth
Vegetarian diet purifies body and mind
Vegetarian diet is less sinful than eating lives because, anyhow, vegetables are non-sentient beings. Non-sentient beings don’t have the brain and the nervous system. Since their sensation and suffering are less, we bear less sin when eating vegetable products.
Let us respectfully put our hands together, palm to palm, to worship, praise and acknowledge with gratitude all kinds, all beings along with the entire universe that are in peace and displaying with us the marvelous and unending vitality of life. On the same note, with a mind of equanimity, spontaneity, innocence, non-reprehension, indiscrimination, non-clinging, let us always respect and remember with gratitude all that are present around us, all that we possess. If able to conduct as such, then right here is truly the Pure Land, and right here, we also have world peace and happiness.
Respectfully offering to the Ten Direction Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, Righteous Saints, Sanghas.
Respectfully offering to the present parents, parents in the previous lives, ancestors from the primal time.
Respectfully offering to beings of many kinds, many things, the entire universe, foes, benefactors, spirits, heroes, the unification of positive and negative realms.
Season of Souls: Requite of The Filial Piety