Many people see vegetarianism as the hallmark of Buddhism, but when Buddhism was first transmitted from India to China, there was no requirement whatsoever that monastics not eat meat. In the Great Nirvana Sutra, the Buddha said, “Meat eaters destroy their seed of compassion.” Thus, later generations advocated vegetarianism to practice the spirit of compassion. In China, Emperor Wu of the Liang dynasty wrote the “Essays on Giving Up Wine and Meat” out of compassion and recommended the entire monastic order take up vegetarianism. He encouraged the laity to become vegetarians as well. It was only from this moment that Buddhism and vegetarianism became so closely intertwined.
In this booklet, Venerable Master Hsing Yun wrote about the relationship between Buddhism and Vegetarianism, such as
I. Buddhist Vegetarianism
II. Different Types of Vegetarians
III. The Benefits of Vegetarianism
IV. Questions on Vegetarianism
V. Taking Life
VI. Common Misconceptions
VII. Cooking Vegetarian Food
To read more about this book, please click the following link.
Buddhism in Every Step - Buddhism and Vegetarianism
Booklet by Fo Guang Shan International Translation Center.