Eight Verses for Mind-Training Composed by Geshe Langri Thangpa Dorjee Singghe (1054-1123).
Audio: H.H. the Dalai Lama
May I consider sentient beings,
dearer than the Wish-Fulfilling Gem.
Best wishes in mind,
Forever hold them dear.
Whenever whoever I am with
May I see myself least important.
And sincerely others in mind,
Hold them dearly highest.
Always observe my behaviour.
Negative thoughts may arise,
[and]Hurt myself and others.
Confront and suppress it with force.
For unpleasant sentient being is,
Overwhelmed by bad-karma and suffering.
When stumble upon rare treasure,
Cherish and empathise.
Out of envy others may,
Insult, abuse and treat me unjustly.
May I accept [freewill] defeat and loss,
And offer victory to them.
Whom I have helped,
With great expectation.
Did immense harm and unjust in return.
May I see him as my true teacher.
In essence, directly or indirectly,
Offer total wellness to mothers.
Suffering and pain of mothers,
Inconspicuously take upon myself.
All above be free from
eight compromises of Acquired Concept.
Recognizing all phenomena is illusory,
May I be free from bondage of disgusting Attachment.
*mother: sentient beings
Buddhist and Meat
There were 18 different sects of Buddhism in ancient India according to Hieun Tsiang(HT) of China who studied in Nalanda for 10 years. There were 10,000 monks when he was in Nalanda. He was one among the 10 priest who can explain 50 Sutra: བཀའ་འགྱུར། and Sastra བསྟན་འགྱུར། in Sanskrit. He returned Home (China) with 657 volumes of sacred books and he single-handedly translated 74 of them into Chinese. He had 150 relics of Buddha. He narrowly escaped death at the hands of Durga worshippers who were ready to sacrifice him. Ref: page 86; the life of Hiuen Tsiang.
HT found that Yenk’i,(Agni/Fire city/ Yangi Google Coordinate: 42.064813° 86.566605°) is in modern Turpan (Uyghur) or Turfan or Gaochang or Kara-Khoja,China, had a huge monastery which follows Indian Sarvastivadin Buddhist sect. These monks were eating meat(flesh) of the three “lawful meats”. They were “ animals 1)unseen; 2) unheard ; 3) unsuspected to have been put to death for the flesh for the monks”. In short, lawful meats are “unseen, unheard and unsuspected”. Later they add two more lawful meats ie animal died of natural cause and animals that were killed by other animals such as lions or birds. There were, now, 5 lawful meats for the monks.
Strangely they call it “pure meat” and it includes sea food or fish.
Three lawful meats permit monks to eat meat in any restaurant. Trick is they must change the restaurant every time they eat.
HT found that it all began in a teaching of Buddha called “gradual: རིམ་བགྱི”. There was another teaching called “instantaneous: ཅིག་ཅར”. In Gradual teaching(my assumption is that it is only related to Vinaya; code of conduct and meal), Sakyamuni Buddha had to accommodate things(Vinaya) as number of Sangha grew. Lawful flesh was one of them. Above monks were follower of Hinayana or Theravada school….Ref: On Yuan Chwang’s[karma: another way of writing Hiuen Tsiang] Travels in India ad 629-645; by Thomas Watters; page 56.
Another incident took place at Hamsa Monastery, Rajgir, Bihar, India. It is at this GE location(25.025040° 85.513041°)- copy this coordinate and paste it in google map search box and view satellite. Here is what HT wrote, “Formerly this Sangharama [karma: Monastery not temple] was given to the doctrine of the Little Vehicle called the “gradual stage," which permits the use of the three pure condiments. On one occasion the steward of the establishment, not having been able to procure the necessary provisions, was standing by the side in great distress, seeing no mode of escape (at a loss what to do), when he beheld a flock of wild geese flying past; then he cried out in jest—" To-day the priests are in dire want, my good masters ! recognize the opportunity! "Having spoken these words, the leading goose, on the sound of the appeal, turned and fell down from the clouds on high, and lay his body prostrate. The Bhikshu having seen (this miracle), filled with astonishment and fear, spread the news abroad among the fraternity. The priests had nothing to say in reply, on hearing the news ; but filled with reverential fear, with many sighs and tears, they talked together and said : '' This is a Bodhisattva ! What man among us would dare to taste the flesh? " When Tathagata established his "gradual method'' of instruction, he forbade us to suppose that these early words of his, were intended to be final; he warned us against foolishly supposing there could be no change, and hence this admonition!
From that time and afterwards they adopted the method of the Great Vehicle, and used no more the three pure aliments[karma: Above 3 lawful flesh for meal].” Ref: The Life of Hiuen Tsiang by the Shaman Hwi Li; page 120.
This story was told in year 635ad by HT. In 635ad it was the Hinayana followers who were eating meats and Mahayana did not, according to HT.
Although Tibetans Buddhism follows Mahayana, instead of abstaining from eating meat we have added the 6th lawful meat. The 6th lawful meat is the “meat obtained through alms”.
However there is no document that points to Sakyamuni Buddha that he ate meat. I strongly believe that Sakyamuni Buddha never took meat and that is why he was able to say that all human beings should abstain from “killing”- taking away life, however small it may be.