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buddhism and raising animals

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  • Gene R Rawe
    Hi everyone, Was hoping I might get some input on some questions I have come up against. Alot of the questions I have recently found answers for in buddhism
    Message 1 of 2 , Jul 21, 2003
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      Hi everyone,

      Was hoping I might get some input on some questions I have come up
      against. Alot of the questions I have recently found answers for in buddhism
      except for one. Is it possible for one to be both a buddhist and a
      livestock producer? Buddhism has tought me becoming a better person
      through helping all others; not just people. From my view, this
      includes looking after all living things to the best of my ability
      (helping to relieve their suffering). It has also brought me to the
      realization that our farming and production practices are abusing
      nature for profit. Hence I found this group. I have been going to
      see a Tibetan monk and talking with him; he said that I should leave
      my job and my family because I was killing and that was bad
      karma. I believe what he says is true if applied to our current
      production practices and my previous outlook. I believe leaving
      would be running away from the situation and that by staying I could
      help my family to live a better life as well as turning our focus to
      improving nature and that it would soon look after us the same way.
      I believe I could make more difference by staying than by leaving
      and avoiding all this. I find it easy for someone in an urban
      situation to say how raising animals for food is bad and that we should all be
      vegetarians in order to be better buddhists; they are not faced with
      these situations eveyday and I feel they are actually avoiding
      things. I would really like to talk to someone who has both an
      understanding of buddhism and of agriculture in hopes of a clearer
      understanding in all this. Thanks in advance.



      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • norie
      ... staying I could help my family to live a better life as well as turning our focus to improving nature and that it would soon look after us the same way. I
      Message 2 of 2 , Aug 8, 2003
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        >> I believe leaving would be running away from the situation and that by
        staying I could help my family to live a better life as well as turning our
        focus to improving nature and that it would soon look after us the same way.
        I believe I could make more difference by staying than by leaving and
        avoiding all this. >>

        Hello Gene and welcome to this list,

        I don't recall seeing any response to your mail from this list, perhaps
        because the topic is not immediately related to Fukuoka farming. I
        hesitated to reply since I'm neither a Buddhist or an agriculturalist, nor
        am I an expert on either, but wanted to give you some words of encouragement
        in your decisions..

        I also believe that running away from problems is not always the best
        solution. We can turn a dilemma into a significant learning experience if
        we stay and challenge the issues from within and carry out the struggle. We
        can also help influence others and help bring on great changes if we chose
        not to run away, but deal with the issue. I have found this from all my
        experiences and am sure Fukuoka would agree, as he is renown for his
        trial-and-error-designed progress.

        Of course, there can be a limit, however, when that issue starts to affect
        your well-being and brings on too much sacrifice. I truly hope you find the
        right balance for you and your family.

        We are living in very interesting times - what has been accepted as the norm
        is something that is destroying our world at an ever-increasingly rapid
        pace. It is so hard to find truth and meaning without looking far and wide.
        You may want to look into the ways that natives have been able to balance
        their lives as agriculturalists....ways that they return to the land as much
        as they take and ways to bring peace to the animals who give their precious
        lives for them. .

        One thing I would like to share: last year, I went to the Big Island of
        Hawaii. A great amount of the land was used for cow pastures. This land
        was quite barren except for the grazed grasses and some cacti - but the rest
        of the undeveloped areas of the island were plush with luscious vegetation.
        The contrast was so stark. But while shunning the pastureland, I began to
        think that this land is still open and wide and has not been given over to
        development and commercialization. There are still possibilities to bring
        this land to richness and fertility. The closer we are to that chance, the
        better off we are..

        I hope you stay on the list to learn with us about how to bring balance to
        the earth through natural farming and find comfort in your
        contributions.this way. It just might be the key to help you solve your
        dilemma.

        Best wishes,

        Norie Fukuda
        Tokyo, Japan
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