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Is vegetarianism preferable for spiritual growth?

by | Aug 29, 2020 | Advaita, Concepts, Consciousness, Enlightenment, Food, General Spiritual, Mind, Paths

Question:

Thank you for the article on vegetarianism and non-vegetarianism – https://ektabathija.com/are-there-karmic-consequences-to-eating-meat/.

My question is not about the Karmic consequences of eating meat but related to spiritual growth. Is vegetarianism preferable for spiritual growth? Is eating eggs a hindrance to success in meditation? Also, should we advise kids to be vegetarian or not, till they are adults and make their own choices?

 

Answer:

There is an unending list of Spiritually acclaimed people from all corners of the world. There have been people like Jesus, Moses, Zarathustra, Mohammad who have been meat-eaters and have attained enlightenment. They are known as the prophets of peace, love, compassion even today. So it will be unfair to say that a vegetarian diet is the only conducive way to spiritual growth. 

It would be a presumptive statement because that would imply that only half of India [vegetarian India] and a few vegetarians sprinkled around the world have the ability to have some spiritual growth and get enlightened while the rest of the world will suffer for lifetimes until they become vegetarians.

 

In the history of the world, we have had great examples of enlightened prophets and saints from all cultures and all religions. Thinking that all of these people were secretly vegetarians sounds irrational and unreasonable, right? Knowing that, how can anyone guarantee that only a vegetarian diet can lead to spiritual growth and Enlightenment? 

The Sufi meditations are one of the most wonderful meditative states that can be attained. Most of the Sufis are meat-eaters. Knowing this, who can judge whether others’ food habits lead them to the highest meditative states or not? How can one guarantee that only a vegetarian diet leads to the highest meditative state? 

Could it be merely cultural conditioning, that a belief prevails about a vegetarian diet being conducive to spiritual growth and meditation?

 

What are true spiritual growth and meditation?

I teach the highest Truth of ‘Oneness’. Embracing everyone as he/she is is the highest virtue for spiritual growth. What does embracing all entail?

-Being non-judgmental about others

-Accepting them as they are

-Seeing reality as it is

-Dropping all conditioning to attain a pure mind

These are the key teachings of Gnyana Sangha. As a teacher of ‘Oneness’, if I am partial to the vegetarians of the world, I would be creating a divide and that would mean pushing away the non-vegetarians of the world from spirituality. That would be totally unfair, judgemental, and non-acceptingly rigid. Recognize that, ‘Oneness’ is the nectar that you are thirsting for. Moving towards finding that nectar is spiritual growth. Resting in the peace that comes from embracing all is meditation. 

 

How does one find the nectar of ‘Oneness’?

To attain oneness, you have to recognize your true self.

Your true self is devoid of ‘conflicts and judgments’. Conflicts and judgments belong to the mind.

You are not the mind. You are the witness of the mind. 

Your true self is devoid of the limitations of the physical body. The physical body is vegetarian or non-vegetarian.

You are not the body. You are merely the witness of the body. 

You, the witness is not different from another witness. It is the same witnessing field, the same consciousness that we all refer to as ‘I’. ‘I’ is our common name. We are all ONE. 

 

How difficult was it to understand this above stated truth of oneness? Would a vegetarian understand this more than a non-vegetarian?

One by one shed all conditionings, move from the realm of the mind to the realm of the consciousness. We are all ONE there. There is no vegetarian and no non-vegetarian there.

Beyond the realm of right and wrong, there is a field. That is the witnessing field. I will meet you there. 

Having said that, I will leave it unto you to make the choice for your home cooking. Whatever your decision, I respect that, dear!

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4 Comments

  1. Shailaja

    Thank you Ektaji! “Resting in the peace that comes from embracing all is meditation“- What a Divine statement! 🙏🏼

    Reply
  2. May Betts

    Dear Ektaji, In the Bhagavad Gita, Krishna states, “If one offers Me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, a fruit or water, I will accept it.” Why has this been understood as Krishna’s instruction to us to adopt the principles of spiritual vegetarianism?

    Reply

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