Japan Was Once A Nation of Vegetarians

My wife shared this with me, something she saw on Facebook. Very interesting!

Japan was once a nation of vegetarians who held the cow as the most sacred of these animals and the fiercest protector of this animal was the ‘Samurai’ feared throughout the land for their martial arts, bravery and devotion to duty.

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As Buddhism departed the shores of Vedic India it had a profound influence upon many countries including China and Korea and Japan and upon entering the lands of Japan around 1500 years ago leaders such as Emperor Tenmu banned the consumption of meat.

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At once it was forbidden to consume meat from four legged animals such as cows and horses and dogs as well as domestic birds such as chickens and roosters and as each successive emperor enforced this Japan became a nation of vegetarians by the 10th century.

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The killing of animals was considered to be extremely sinful while the killing of birds was considered moderately sinful and the killing of fish somewhat sinful and in those days the Japanese ate the whale which was considered to be a big fish and not a mammal.

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Japan distinguished between animals reared in the household and those in the wild as to kill a wild animal was sinful but to kill an animal you had raised from birth was considered abominable, like killing a member of the family hence their diet was mainly rice and noodles and sometimes fish and on occasions wild fowl.

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Anyone who ate meat was considered low class and had to fast for three days during which one was forbidden to look at the deities of Buddha due to shameful acts and later stricter laws was passed where one who ate meat had to fast for 100 days.

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One thousand years Japan had lived as a country scorning the consumption of meat and held the cow as sacred and in 1549 all this was about to change with the appearance of the Jesuit priests who brought their Christian faith to the peaceful islands of Japan.

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