Hindus and Vegetarianism

Today Gurudeva answers a question about vegetarianism and whether we can avoid harming plants or not. The cyberspace listener asked, "Is it necessary for us to kill living beings (plants) in order to survive?" Gurudeva describes the different classifcations of foods, as well as, a way to true happiness.

Unedited Transcript:

Today at Kauai Aadheenam, January 23rd. Greetings to each and everyone in cyberspace.

We have a question from Langers Christian. Very interesting that non-Hindus are visiting a Hindu ashram, seeing what we are doing. Hindus look at religion as a daily event, not a Sunday event. Langers is interested in vegetarianism and has this question. "Have we to kill living beings to survive? With 'living beings', I mean animals and plants. Isn't a plant a living being?"

A very good point because that is a great concern to conservative, orthodox Hindu people who really practice their religion, especially if they are more elderly and more thoughtful, perhaps retired. Definitely should not eat animals, definitely should not eat animals. But, as far as plants are concerned, Langers, we have different kinds of classifications.

Satvic eating so that you do not kill the plant or tree or bush. For instance, berries. You can pick berries but you do not kill the berry bush. You can pick fruit and you do not kill the fruit tree. You can pick everything that grows above the ground, but you do not kill. For instance, picking lettuce leaves, you do not have to kill the lettuce plant. You can pick the leaves that are ready to be picked as well as many, many other green vegetables. This is the ideal way to live. That eliminates then the root vegetables such as carrots and potatoes and so forth. Those that really like to eat root vegetables will pick a potato and then plant the eye of the potato and grow another potato. Takes a lot of keeping track of, to know how many potatoes to grow. But, it is a matter of conscience and a matter of who you are on the evolutionary path.

Some people are content to eat anything and everything. Meat of all kinds, all bad combinations of food. They buy expensive food, junk food and buy their way right into the hospital and pay megabucks to come out the other side and eventually just die a miserable death.

To be healthy and happy is the greatest wealth. Money doesn't bring happiness, but it does aid to happiness, since money is a commodity in today's world. But true happiness comes from making another person happy, being healthy and living a well-balanced life. Thank you, Langers, for the very nice question. We wish you a wonderful day today. Go forth with confidence and make others happy.

Our Cyberspace Ashram here on the Garden Island of Kauai, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, welcomes each and everyone to tune in. We know that we have been having a little bit of trouble with our master server and the ashram doors have been open but you haven't been able to tune in because of that problem. We hope that problem is being corrected and has been corrected. Lots of blessings to each and everyone of you flowing from all of us here. We enjoy talking with you and we enjoy answering your questions.

Aum Namah Sivaya.