Relative Karmic Debt

Date June 23, 2008

This is a follow up from a post where I discussed meat consumption and karmic debt.

Below you will find an analysis of the relative Karmic Debt that you might incur for eating various animals. The assumptions underlying this chart are that Animals experience pain and suffering. Some animals are more advanced and therefore more able to comprehend pain signals and suffering. Since not all animals experience pain in the same way, the relative Karmic Debts incurred by those who eat the animals vary from species to species.

I assembled and arranged this list based on the biology of animals, brain size, central nervous system, brain neurons, personality traits, intelligence and biological factors. It is merely posturing about the relative Karmic burden of eating various animals.

Primates

Karmic Debt:

HEINOUS

Pain: 1000

Humans, Baboons, Apes, Chimpanzees

Cetaceans

Karmic Debt:

BRUTAL

Pain: 800

Dolphins, Whales

Marsupials

Karmic Debt:

Grim

Pain: 750
Kangaroos, Kuala Bears

Artiodactyla

Karmic Debt:

FIERCE

Pain: 700

Pigs, Lambs, Cows, Deer, Goat

Carnivora

Karmic Debt:

GRUELING

Pain: 675

Cats, Dogs, Bears, Lions, Tigers

Lagomorpha

Karmic Debt:

SEVERE

Pain: 500

Rabbits

Rodentia

Karmic Debt:

HARSH

Pain: 425

Squirrels, Rats, Mice, Hampsters

Birds

Karmic Debt:

Intense

Pain: 400

Turkeys, Chickens, Duck, Geese, Quail

Reptiles

Karmic Debt:

Moderate

Pain: 300

Alligators, Snakes, Lizards, Turtles, Alligator

Amphibians

Karmic Debt:

Mild

Pain: 200

Frogs, Salamanders

The animals listed past this point operate more or less on instinct.

It is believed that their respective level of consciousness and pain awareness are so basic that one will incur no negative Karma by killing and eating them.

However, they do still experience pain and suffering at some level, so if you don’t want to take any chances, keep your diet relegated to the Plant Kingdom. Consequently, just because an animal is listed below does not necessarily indicate that it is a healthy thing to eat. Lobsters are the cockroaches of the sea, they are filthy, dirty animals and are one of the worst things you can eat.

Fish

Karmic Debt:

Light

Pain: 50

Salmon, Trout, Sharks, Tuna

Crustacean

Karmic Debt:

Soft

Pain: 40

Crabs, Lobsters, Shrimp

Insects

Karmic Debt:

Incidental

Pain: 30

Spiders, Bees, Butterflies, Ants

Mollusks

Karmic Debt:

MINOR

Pain: 20

Snails, Clams

Porifera

Karmic Debt:

Negligible

Pain: 10

Sponge

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