Answers to two questions that have come up

The Siddhartha I refer to is Hermann Hesse’s novel named [I]Siddhartha[/I] which I read shortly after leaving ISKCON. In it, a young brahmin named Siddhartha and his friend Govinda join a band of wandering ascetics. They travel with them for years and Siddhartha becomes a great ascetic but feels dissatisfied with the results. They meet the Gautama Buddha. Govinda becomes his disciple, but Siddhartha cannot. He goes and becomes the disciple of Kamala, a high class courtesan. After slipping into a life of debauchery, he leaves everything and becomes a ferryman, watching the river flow and following the middle way. I strongly identify with this archetype.

Why I quickly took up meat eating after being a vegetarian for so long? If I were to break my guru disciple relationship with ACBS, I felt I had to break his rules. I was also very yinned out as a sannyasi. I felt I needed grounding and to strengthen myself physically and mentally. I needed to bring out more of my Sun/Mars spiritual warrior nature and learn to fight back more. It helped to lower the openness of my consciousness so that I could better deal with the hard struggle for existence in the material world. It’s sometimes a kill or be killed world, and I decided which end of that equation I was on. Who’s afraid of a vegetarian who won’t even kill and animal?

I gave up eating red meat a couple of months ago. I have always believed that a vegetarian diet is the best possible diet for humans in an ideal world. However, we do not live in an ideal world. I did what I did to survive as best I could in the real world I lived in.

Looking at it in Christian terms, Jesus said it doesn’t matter what you put in your mouth, but what comes out of it. He was against the purity codes which separated the priests and Pharisees from the rest of the people. I also look at it as being part of the corporate sin of the world and being a sinner as we all are and needing to depend on Radha’s grace to get me through.

I have reclaimed my Western heritage and culture and now try to adapt the devotional teachings I learned from my revered gurus to the world as it is for me now.


Comments are closed.