save the dolphins

Many mystically-minded healers have told us that dolphins are unique in that they operate from both sides of the brain in their ordinary waking state.  Even humans don’t normally do that.  When a dolphin wants to sleep he shuts down half of his brain!  Humans on the other hand, are always operating from only one side of their brain.  As a result, dolphins are considered to be very intuitive and highly intelligent mammals.

THE COVE is an Academy Award® Winner for Best Documentary of 2009.  It follows an elite team of activists, filmmakers and free divers as they embark on a covert mission to penetrate a remote and hidden cove in Taiji, Japan, shining a light on a dark and deadly secret – killing of dolphins.

It is quite awful to see these wonderful creatures get brutally slaughtered.  To benefit these beings, Ric O’Barry and his son Lincoln are on a new television series (on Planet Green) trying to raise awareness and show what Japan is doing to the dolphins there.

Karma of killing:

From a Buddhist perspective, it is believed that the karma for killing a higher-order species is much greater than killing organisms that don’t have a complex nervous system.  Therefore, killing dolphins would incur a much greater karmic debt over simple life forms such as worms.  The more evolved and intricate a nervous system is an indication that there is greater suffering at the time of death.

In the Ksitigarbha Great Vow sutra, the bodhisattva Ksitigarbha (many aeons ago) was a woman with unbearable suffering at the thought of her mother being reborn in the hell realm for her grave misdeeds.  She was so upset that her mother was suffering in hell for killing baby fish that her heart couldn’t take it.  Here is an excerpt:

The arhan asked Bright Eyes, “What did your mother do when she was alive?  She is now suffering in hell.”

Bright Eyes answered, “My mother loved eating fish, especially baby fish.  She fried or boiled thousands of baby fish, willfully, as she pleased.  Please noble one be merciful and help my mother.”

The arhan felt compassion for her and advised Bright Eyes, “Reverently recite the name of Buddha Pure-Lotus-Eyes and draw an image of him to benefit all those beings either living or dead.”

So Bright Eyes sold all her favorite things as soon as she heard the arhan’s instructions.  Then she asked a painter to draw the Buddha’s portrait.  She gave offerings in sacrifice, and with a reverent heart sorrowfully wept as she worshipped the Buddha.

Unexpectedly one night, as if in a dream, she saw a Buddha who was as tall as Mount Sumeru, emitting bright and shining light.  This Buddha told Bright Eyes, “Your mother will be soon reborn in your house.  She will be able to speak soon after she feels hunger and cold.”

If this is true, how much worse is it to kill dolphins and whales!  It is kind of surprising that Japan is doing this as they had such a rich Buddhist culture in the past.  Maybe someone should send out fliers of this sutra written in Japanese near the Cove to remind them.


There are two meritorious ways that you can take action to help our world.

You can help by adopting a dolphin here: World Wildlife Fund

You can also help by shutting down illegal whaling and protecting all marine wildlife here: Support Sea Shepherd



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Filed under Buddhist sutras, Masters, World Issues

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