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ahimsA

From: Mani Varadarajan (mani_at_be.com)
Date: Tue Jul 28 1998 - 16:33:10 PDT

The great discourse by Tuladhara on non-violence
was cited by Dileepan.  Here is an excerpt from
the remarkable original:

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This is XII.262 in P.C. Ray's translation.  The numbering of
Sukhtankar's critical edition will differ slightly.

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Tuladhara said:
Why do you not consume them that emasculate bulls and bore
their noses and cause them to bear heavy burdens and bind them
and put them under diverse kinds of restraint,

and those that eat the flesh of living creatures after killing
them? Men are seen to own men as slaves,

and by beating, by binding, and by otherwise subjecting them to
restraints, force them to toil day and night.  These people are
not unaware of the pain that results from beating ahd chains.

In every creature that is endued with the five senses live all
the deities---Surya, Chandramas, the god of wind, Brahman,
Prana, Kratu, and Yama.

There are men that live by trafficking in living beings! When
they earn a living by such a sinful course, what scruples need
they feel in selling dead carcasses?  The goat is Agni.  The
sheep is Varuna.  The horse is Surya.  Earth is the god Virat.

The cow and the calf are Soma.  The man who sells these can
never obtain success.  But what fault can come from the sale of
oil, of ghrita, honey, or drugs, O twice-born one?

There are many animals that grow up in ease and comfort in
places free from gnats and biting insects.  Knowing that they
are loved dearly by their mothers, men persecute them in
diverse ways, 	[I believe this includes human beings. -- Mani]

and lead them into miry spots abounding with biting insects.
Many animals are oppressed with heavy burdens.  Others are made
to languish in consequence of treatment not sanctioned by the
scriptures.

[...]

These, O Jajali, are some of the wicked and dreadful practices
that are current in the world.  You practice them because they
have been practiced by men from ancient times, and not because
they agree with the dictates of your purified understanding.

One should practice what one considers to be one's duty, guided
by reason, instead of blindly following the practices of the
world.  Listen now, O Jajali, as to what my behavior is towards
him that injures and him that praises me.

I regard both of them in the same light.  I have none whom I
like and none whom I dislike.  The wise applauded such a course
of conduct as consistent with dharma.

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