Every now and again this question pops up. A while back I had posted it as a question on an online Zen Forum and was amazed at the ferocity of the replies and statements from people.
It left me with the concrete impression that you can't mess with what people eat.
Defensive doesn't begin to describe people's attitude to their food.
I admit I have a hard time understanding the concept of karma being removed if you are the consumer of meat but not the one who killed, butchered or cooked the meat.
All tremble at violence;
Life is dear for all,
Seeing others as being like yourself,
Do not kill or cause others to kill
Dhammapada Verse 130
Wouldn't one be guilty by association as it were ?
Recently I read that the Dalai Lama eats meat that his doctor had prescribed to him for health reasons.
I can understand I guess, that, in Tibet the climate is not particularly good for farming, and the lack of vegetation pretty much means the populace has to consume Yak or some other meat source for survival.
So I'll ask the question here, if you are Buddhist should you refrain from eating meat ? Does it break precepts ? What do people think about this ?