Question: I am a vegetarian but I work as a meat handler. Is this increasing my karma?

Sri Chinmoy: If you are a vegetarian, and if your earthly duty demands that you work at a place where you have to handle meat, do not feel that you are increasing your karma or doing something wrong. As long as you do not feel the necessity of eating meat, and your consciousness is not in the aggressive animal consciousness, then there is no harm.

Sometimes, I know, there is something called compulsion. If this is the only place that you can get a job, then you should do it. But your consciousness must not be in the meat; your consciousness must be in something pure and divine. You have to know where your consciousness remains while you work. There are some people in the spiritual life who do not eat meat, but when they see meat and fish immediately their greed and desire comes to the fore. This kind of vegetarianism is only self-deception. But if you do not want to eat meat and do not feel the need of it, then even if you touch meat there will be no problem.

If you are extremely sincere, and if you feel that touching meat lowers your consciousness, then your sincere aspiration will knock at God's Door and God will provide you with some other job. If He feels that your consciousness is being lowered by touching meat and if you are sincerely crying and searching for another job, then He will not allow you to remain with this one. But if your consciousness is not lowered, then God will say, "There is no harm in it."