Straw-man: What do you mean and? I broke the first precept and broke my vegetarian diet.
Buddhist Monk: Did you kill an animal? Did you torture it?
Straw-man: Technically no, but...I mean...well
Buddhist Monk: When eating meat, did you intend any harm to the animal? Was there any malice in your heart?
Straw-man: No! I was just hungry.
Buddhist Monk: Then no wrong has been committed.
Straw-man But I ate something that was once a living sentient being.
Buddhist Monk: Would you say that a lion meant harm to a gazelle when hunting? Or would you say that it was trying to satisfy a basic biological need?
Straw-man: Okay. I see your point, but the lion isn't aware of its actions in the same way that I am.
Buddhist Monk: Let's suppose that is true. So you're claim is that the action itself is significant? What about the end result?
Straw-man: Both are significant.
Buddhist Monk: And you're right, but what you fail to realize is that intent is also significant. You didn't intend to cause harm to a sentient being by eating meat, you were just satisfying your hunger.
Buddhist Monk: Imagine a scenario in which a burglar stabs a man intending to rob him. The wounded man ends up in the hospital and at the hospital it turns out that in the entry wound this man has a tumor, that had it been left unnoticed it would eventually have brought about his death. Now the burglar's actions have led to this man's life being saved. Would you then say that the burglar is this man's savior?
Buddhist Monk: Why not?
Straw-man: Because he was robbing him, not trying to save him!
Buddhist Monk: So you're saying that even though the stabbing ended up saving his life in the long term, he didn't intend that and those shouldn't be revered for his actions?
Straw-man: Oh....so I can eat as much meat as I want?
Straw-man: Transitioning into vegetarianism has proven to be difficult. I'd even go as far as to say that I'm miserable.
Buddhist Monk: Then maybe you shouldn't be a vegetarian.
Straw-man: But doesn't that violate one of the precepts?
Buddhist Monk: Well yes, but causing yourself pain and misery isn't very mindful either.
Straw-man: So what do you suppose I do?
Buddhist Monk: I don't have that answer for you. To live the good life doesn't mean that you get it right 100% percent of the time instead you must focus your attention to the present moment.
Straw-man: Okay...but I'm not sure how that helps me with my situation.
Buddhist Monk: You're going to have to judge your actions on a case by case basis. If given the choice between eating meat and not eating meat, you'll have to decide which is the better choice for you at the present moment. Forcing yourself, to pick one or the other before the choice is given to you is living your life according to extremes.
Straw-man: So you're telling me to walk the Middle Path?
Buddhist Monk: Precisely.
Straw-man: Alright I think I understand. I think I'm going to go enjoy a a plateful of bacon, now!
Narrator: Now for another segment of 'Straw-man vs. the World.'
Straw-man: People say that it is possible to eat for the sake of pleasure and I'll have to say is, "Really?!" Of all the actions that one can derive pleasure from, it had to be eating! What kind of nonsense is this? I mean...you should eat so you don't die of starvation. That's the point of eating, to avoid dying. To continue in existence. Are you telling me that avoiding death is pleasurable? Next you're going to tell me people have sex for fun instead of procreation.
Narrator: Actually some people do have sex for pleasure rather than procreation.
Straw-man: WHAT?! For Fuck's sake!
Narrator: This has been 'Straw-man vs. the World."