Buddha on Animal Sacrifice
Once Buddha came across a ceremony which was on, and a great crowd had gathered there to celebrate it. He asked - "What is happening here?" and they said that the man who was worshipping had asked for something. It had been fulfilled and now he was sacrificing a bull to the Deity to show his gratitude to the Deity, he was killing a bull; it was a religious ceremony. Buddha said, "But what has the bull to do with it? If that man feels that God has given something to him, has been favorable to him, he should sacrifice himself." Buddha entered into the crowd, and asked the man - "What are you doing? Why are you being violent to this poor bull? He has not done anything bad to you!"
The man was a Braahman, a scholar, a knower of scriptures. He quoted scriptures and he said - "You don't know. I am not being violent to the bull. The scriptures say, the Ved say, that if in a religious ceremony an animal is crucified, killed, murdered, butchered, the animal-soul goes to Heaven directly. I'm not being violent to him, he will go to Heaven."
Then Buddha said - "This is a very good information. Anyone can go to Heaven now. So why don't you kill your father or your mother or yourself and go to Heaven? Why are you missing the opportunity to go to Heaven? This bull may or may not want to go to heaven. If it is certain that by this religious ceremony one will go to Heaven, then kill your father or kill your mother - or kill yourself! The best thing is to kill yourself!"
The Braahman listened to Buddha. His presence made it so clear to him: he dropped the weapon there, he renounced all that religious ceremony and he asked Buddha - "Now you tell me how to be religious, because I have been doing all these things my whole life. You have shocked me, but now you have awakened me."
Created by Sushma Gupta on 5/9/09
Updated on 09/27/12