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Ahimsa - doing as little harm as possible to our fellow-species

Ahimsa is a Sanskrit term that basically means "no harm." We name this section "fauna" ahimsa to emphasize that we're talking about not harming our brethren in the animal kingdom. The spiritual concept of ahimsa has, in our opinion, no limits. More on Ahimsa, and its roots in Jainism and Buddhism.

The Ahimsa Foundation - 1982 to present  - which supports humane societies, wildlife sanctuaries and shelters for pets, farm animals, and primates. This is dearly departed Elsie Mitchell's passion. Elsie on cuke. Here's a listing for it on the Philanthropy Directory. The 2017 link to the foundation goes to which has Ahimsa Foundation on its header with an Oklahoma address. Just got word from then that they are not connected. So I'm not sure if Elsie's Ahimsa

11-21-09 - Menu suggestions - Food Inc.

Meat and Climate - bad news bovines. I remember John Robbins who rejected family's ice cream way saying that the best thing you can do for the environment is to not eat animal food.

1-05-09 - HFA - the Humane Farming Association - founded by Brad Miller who many of us know from the SFZC.

July 4, 2001 Radio Project Interview with Brad Miller - On the Kill Floor: U.S. Slaughterhouse Conditions

HFA on YouTube

The Satya Interview: Gail Eisnitz of the Humane Farming Association

First Giving raises money for HFA online

Guidestar info on HFA

Vanja Palmers and Brad Miller founded Buddhists Concerned for Animals years ago at Tassajara. Vanja has been involved with animal rights issues in Switzerland and Austria on a serious scale funding legal action that got all the way to the Swiss supreme court for example. Katrinka and I have visited with his rescue pigs near Felsentor, the retreat he founded in the Alps above Lake Luzern. profile of Vanja Palmers

9-05-17 - Thinking about this section because we're getting a dog for our new Sanur home. Too vast to do more than suggest subjects to investigate.

Do a web search for key words in the following - much to choose from. The list could go on and on

Factory Farming and read about what some consider the greatest crime in the history of the human race.

Pets. Is it ethical to have pets? Feeding pets animal food. PETA on vegan dog and cat food. Rescue animals.

Feral cats - here's an article on their horrendous effect on wildlife (killing billions of birds, reptiles, and mammals.)

The human race has brought about what many now call the sixth great extinction. Our activity is considered by some to be a threat not only to human life continuing but vertebrate life. To be unhypocritically ethical and compassionate with all life and do as little harm as possible, one would have to go to extremes of behavioral limitation such as the Jain monks practiced. I acknowledge my role as part of this holocaust like a law-abiding citizen living near a death camp and make small gestures like eating mainly vegetarian and not killing pests except for mosquitoes which can cause illness and kill us where I live. - DC

10-26-2015 - On cockroaches and centipedes - I grew up in a home where we tried to avoid killing anything, favoring catch and release. This has continued to be my practice with some rather extreme exceptions for flies in the early days of Tassajara and cockroaches when I became tenzo, head cook, of the SFZC City Center in 1987 and inherited a kitchen and beyond with extreme infestation - like whole drawers and ovens full of them - due to a prior policy I called idiot compassion. Read here about the Have-a-heart Roach Hotel.

11-16-08 One reason why Barak Obama was the first presidential candidate to be endorsed by the American Humane Association.

See the comic Mutts' for the week of Dec.8-13 which deals with this theme.

On Ahimsa, Buddhism and Jainism

Ahimsa is a Sanskrit term that basically means "no harm." We name this section "fauna" ahimsa to emphasize that we're talking about not harming our brethren in the animal kingdom. The spiritual concept of ahimsa has, in our opinion, no limits. On the other hand, Shakyamuni Buddha did argue, in a formal debate with Vardhamana, the founder (or oldest known proponent) of the Jain religion, that only members of the animal kingdom were sentient beings. Vardhamana argued that plants were also sentient beings. (source - memory, maybe Bob Thurman).

On Jainism and Ahimsa - from Wikipedia

The Hindu scholar, Lokmanya Tilak credited Jainism with influencing Hinduism and thus leading to the cessation of animal sacrifice in Vedic rituals. Bal Gangadhar Tilak has described Jainism as the originator of Ahimsa and wrote in a letter printed in Bombay Samachar, Mumbai:10 Dec, 1904: "In ancient times, innumerable animals were butchered in sacrifices. Evidence in support of this is found in various poetic compositions such as the Meghaduta. Swami Vivekananda[61] also credited Jainism as influencing force behind the Indian culture.

"What could have saved Indian society from the ponderous burden of omnifarious ritualistic ceremonialism, with its animal and other sacrifices, which all but crushed the very life of it, except the Jain revolution which took its strong stand exclusively on chaste morals and philosophical truths? Jains were the first great ascetics. "Don't injure any, do good to all that you can and that is all the morality and ethics, and that is all the work there is, and the rest is all nonsense... Throw it away." And then they went to work and elaborated this one principle, and it is a most wonderful ideal: how all that we call ethics they simply bring out from one great principle of non-injury and doing good."

See Jains and Buddhists on ahimsa



what's new this year

There's a lot of old material that's as good as new if you haven't read it. -DC

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