Yogic philosophy talks about various dispositions of man and often touts the sattvic personality as something pure and high and somehow closer to God. I was under just such an illusion when I approached my Master with this very question once upon a time. I asked Him.
“Baba, do I have to be a vegetarian?”
He answered. “Hey, if God is everything in this Universe, then God is you, and me, and the cow, and the guy who kills the cow, too. God is eating the cow and God is being eaten, too. So not to make yourself crazy thinking about all this and that. Just do what you are doing and be as a being. That’s what all the sages say. But stay away from too much red meat because of the cholesterol.” This is how he answered me about a year into our relationship.
I am Shivnetra yogi. My disposition is of a sattvic nature for many reasons of this and that. And I’m quite fond of tandoori chicken and a good steak once in a while. And still, 10 years into my relationship with the Master, an ascetic yogi of the aghor-nath sampradaya and of tamasic disposition, who was most often a vegetarian, He did begin to wean me off the meat.
Yes, there seems to be a connection between, not only the foods we put into our mouth and our spiritual inclinations, but the condition of our overall health, in mind as well as body.
“Not to force anything, but to do it all with a great love.” This was another applicable teaching to this question. As well as His advice to bust it out with a good hamburger whenever someone felt a bout of imbalance coming on.
…is a Saiva Tantrika, Gyana Yogi and founder of Uma Maheshwara Yoga & Ayurveda. David has an MA in Semiotics, lives in Japan with his family and works as a coach in L & D, devoting his time to developing science-based tools and programs that help people reach the fullest potential of the human condition.