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Vegan Vegetarian Killing bugs?

Discussion in 'Lifestyle Diets' started by cryystalsmile, Jan 31, 2019.

  1. So, to any of you who don't eat animals for ethical reasons, do you feel bad about killing bugs?
    I hope I don't sound dumb, but since I was a kid I've always felt bad about killing spiders and bugs that came into the house bc technically they're animals too.
    Idk I've been raised around buddhism and krishna (vaishnavism, whatever you wanna call it) so I def have that "all lives matter" mentality ingrained in me.
    AlaisInWinter likes this.
  2. Not in the slightest. I've always had a crippling fear of insects. I coldly murder them without batting an eye. Brings peace to my heart.

    I don't kill spiders tho. They're my friends.
    Except those times I catch them and give them to my cat to eat. She likes them.
    xXcreepXx likes this.
  3. I don't really kill insects unless they can do an actual harm. I grew up next to a lot of animals so it is kind of just natural for me to live side by side, though that kinda makes it look like I lived in a jungle lol It's just there are so many home spiders that would rather just stay on their corner and I can't really understand why people feel so threated if not for how the media is constantly imposing fear on us.
  4. @cryystalsmile

    I agree, all lives do matter.

    I catch spiders, beetles, etc with a piece of paper and a jar and turn them loose outside. Where I lived before scorpions were an issue...even them, I put outside.

    But not cockroaches...if they dare to attempt to take up residence in my domain...we are going to war and I will win. I have an exterminator that comes quarterly so that I don't have the moral dilemma. While he uses products that do kill, he also uses repellents so that we don't have the issue to begin with. I won't allow the use of "glue traps" etc that attract the insects. Repel is ok...lure them in...no.

    Flies, fleas, and mosquitoes, mites, bedbugs any kind of biting insect...if they bite me, my babies, my pups...I kill them. They carry disease and I have no moral dilemma with attempting to eradicate them from the surface of the planet (at least on my region of the planet)...but only if they bring the fight to me. I'd rather repel anything than kill it, and I will take steps to prevent their reproduction and expansion of territory.

    I don't like killing ants, I don't think they carry disease... they are a nuisance and in enough quantity of bites (stings?) me and my babies will have an allergic reaction. That said, they scavenge the dead, serve the cycle of life, cycle nutrients and till the soil. I still don't want them in my yard but as long as they don't build their hills where my babies play, I let them be. Live and let live.

    And bees...I don't kill bees...they have a purpose. Our plants would cease to exist without bees and the other creatures that pollinate.

    Entomologists tell me that without wasps, hornets, yellow jackets, we'd have no Fig Newtons or Wine, but that apparently they are like the dictators, military, law enforcement, judge and jury of the insect world, controlling other sectors, reducing populations by eating aphids, flies and caterpillars and doing a little waste management operation as a sideline, by feeding on dead bugs. Without their effort, apparently we'd be knee deep in dead bugs...but I am allergic and they need to not set up headquarters where I am...otherwise it's on.


    Just as a point of discussion, since you remarked on being raised around Buddhists and Krishna devotees, I studied Buddhism and practiced Hare Krishna.

    Buddha taught non-violence, not pacifism. Buddhists do not believe in harming other beings. I feel you probably were influenced in your beliefs on the harm of others by this exposure.

    Think back to the last time you wanted to harm someone or something ... Did you feel at peace or were you roiled up inside? Did you respond to your wish to be treated with respect, or were you free from the control of needing to be treated such-and-such a way? That is the problem with current education and practice in the secular US...many have this fear and need to be treated in a certain way rather than treating others in that way and ultimately are controlled by their own fears, needs, desires.

    Did you improve your relationship with that person/creature by your actions? Did you earn good merit by practicing patience, thereby increasing your positive karma and the likelihood that you would react with patience in the future? Or did you strengthen the imprint/habit of reacting with fear, anger and self-cherishing, thereby increasing your negative karma, self-cherishing, and the likelihood that you would react with anger in the future?

    If you look at how this operates inside you in your own life, then you start to understand why Buddhists do not believe in harming other beings. Becoming a better Buddhist is a matter of practice, of re-training and modifying what we do and how we look at others and the situations we find ourselves in. If we cultivate loving-kindness, this is inconsistent with self-attachment and anger.

    The idea of Buddhism as an inherently pacifist religion is oversimplified. Buddhist teaching has never prohibited believers from fighting in defense of a just cause.

    For me, protecting my home and family, health, wellness and freedom from invaders, be they man or bug is just and I engender no bad karma in doing so.

    Fighting back when necessary, when the fight is brought to your doorstep, is also very Krishna practice. Krishna devotees do not seek confrontation. Life should be based on principles of compassion, non-violence and balance.

    That said, I quote Prabhupada, "When a person is fool number one, beat him. That’s all. Dhol gunar… Tulasi dasa has said, dhol gunar sudra pasu nari, ei saba sasana ke adhikari. Dhol, drum, you have to bring it to the tune by beating, “tung, tung.” Gunar. Gunar means fool person. Pasu, animal. Dhol, gunar, pa…, sudra, and nari, woman. They should be punished to bring them into order. Ei saba sasana ke adhikari. Otherwise they will spoil. A barking dog, you cannot pacify him, “My dear dog, don’t bark.” It will disturb him: “No!” Dhol gunar sudra pasu nari, ei saba sasana ke… So anyone who is denying the existence of God, he is a rascal number one and beat him with shoes. Bas. He is being beaten with shoes by nature. "

    In Krishna I was taught that if you happened to kill an insect, chant Hare Krishna and beg Krishna to forgive that sin....that such killings while speaking, walking, etc will be forgiven as they can not be prevented by anyone because insects are spread at each and every millimeter of the earth. One should not, however kill for for one's sense gratification, for this will implicate one in sinful activity."

    That said, I quote a direct example given by HG Srutakirti Dasa when he was serving Srila Prabhupada:

    "I had never seen so many mosquitoes in my life. It was so bad that by the time I had the net over his bed there were already mosquitoes inside the net. One night, after we both climbed under the net I was massaging his legs.

    I said, 'There are so many mosquitoes. Should I kill them, Srila Prabhupada?'

    He said, 'Yes! They are attacking.'

    According to Sastra, if one is being attacked, you have the right to defend yourself. And, they are attacking."

    So, the instruction is you have to avoid killing any kind of animals as far as possible unless you are being really threatened/attacked by them. It would be better if you can find some ways of chasing them away or repelling them without having to kill them. For example: cockroaches are reputed to dislike the smell of bay leaves. Hence, if you can find some bay leaves or other thing that they don't like, use these things to get rid of them. My grandmother taught me that ants will not cross chalk...so to avoid sugar ants or ants seeking water in dry climates, a chalk line across their point of entry will cause them to reroute. Providing them a dish of sugar water near their hill helps too. :)

    In many temples that I have been to, cats are kept because they kill insects, rats, etc...the devotees incur no bad karma for keeping cats, so long as they don't feed them cat food with beef in it, thereby supporting the industry that kills billions of cows annually. I kind of look at my exterminator the same way; at his stage of life and development, he has no moral dilemma with bug killing, like a cat with a rat. I incur no bad karma, for allowing him to benefit me and himself through gainful employment.
    cryystalsmile likes this.
  5. I don't like killing bugs either. Most of them are pretty cool and I like them. If I find them indoors, whenever possible I capture them and put them outside. I try to avoid squishing them on the sidewalk. When I longboard on the network of paths near my neighborhood I'm always carving around pillbugs and crickets lol.

    That being said, I've experienced the horrors of having bedbugs not once but twice, and let me tell you, I would do anything to get rid of those fuckers, including dropping a nuclear bomb on my apartment. They are that bad, I tell no lie.
  6. i’ve been vegetarian for 6 or 7 years and i would never intentionally kill anything and if i accidentally do i always feel so guilty. one exception though was when i was in cambodia. i was in the jungle for a few days and the bread i had was infested with ants. i needed to eat it because i was trekking all day and i tried my best not to eat any ants (but i’m sure i ate some lol).
    cryystalsmile and AlaisInWinter like this.
  7. I don’t kill insects, but if they ain’t paying them bills they’re going out.
  8. Same with fleas. They are the spawn of satan.
  9. Only in self defence.
    Spiders get left alone, or if they are objectionably large, carefully captured and deposited outside. Flies, bees, hornets in the house or car are shooed out an open window.
    Mosquito sucking my blood? SWAT!!!
  10. I feel bad about it but I also have a total phobia of spiders and anything that looks like it might be related to a spider, if it's got more than 4 legs I will lose my shit completely. I'm actually too scared to kill them, I have to get someone else to kill them, and I have to see their dead bodies. I can't have the just put outside because I'm convinced that once they know how to get in they'll come back and get me (specifically me, like they're literally out to get me). I know how ridiculous it is, phobias are irrational for a reason lol

    My phobia trumps my morals unfortunately.
  11. Yeah but fuck roaches and set them on fire!!! I'm not playin' :emoji_triumph:
    pizzaeater likes this.
  12. I love insects & arachnids! I do what I can to catch & release them, & always try to be nice & let them go in nice areas of my garden so maybe they can find a different place to live lol

    the only bugs that I dont tolerate are ticks & mosquitos, just bc they carry disease. but during the warmer seasons I always use repellents to keep them away & try not to have to resort to killing them myself

    overall im a big softie & love all living things lol
  13. I love bugs! I usually leave them alone or release them outside. There isn't really a specific kind i'm scared of either. The reality is though, we're going to crush some bugs in our life whether we mean it or not. I don't have a problem if people kill bugs due to an infestation (we used to get ants every summer, crawling everywhere. it was awful...It's a major hygiene issue too. or fleas/lice/termites) or due to being possibly disease causing/venomous.

    "Veganism is a way of living which seeks to exclude, as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose."

    If an insect is causing you no harm and your house isn't infested I find killing bugs just because "ew scary!" is kind of unneeded and people should try to face their fears more.

    our insect populations are actually dropping and it's not good! These guys are important to the ecosystem.
    cat-gf likes this.
  14. Of course I kill them when they need to be killed. I'm vegan because I don't want to give money to meat/dairy/egg/fish industry, not because I could not kill animals myself. Though, bees I don't want to kill.
    Anaisana likes this.
  15. I do feel terribly bad and if I do kill one I say sorry before I do.

    Sent from my LGLS755 using Tapatalk
  16. I feel bad, but I still do it if it is like a roach or centipede or earwig or something.
    I just have a massive fear of bugs.
  17. Very interesting thread... this has always been a big question for me because I FUCKING HATE BUGS WITH ALL MY MIGHT but I'm about that vegan life... Hm. I'm excited to read all the opinions!
  18. I do so long as it isn't a dangerous (like black widows or brown recluses) or disease carrying bug (mosquitos or ticks).
  19. I’m not vegan anymore but when I was, I would absolutely kill certain bugs, particularly those that were venomous or potential disease-carriers and any that would get into the food like ants and roaches. My family’s health is more important than the life of the bug that could make them sick (or worse).

    I do try to capture and release most other bugs, though.
  20. I used to be vegan be that had not to do with it really for me. I've always feel bad for killing bugs, that's why I try to capture and release them outside. However, if the bug is dangerous or hostile then I will kill it; I still feel bad though :/