Master Xu Yun never ate meat in his entire 120 years of life – and just prior to his death – he instructed that his body be cremated and the ashes rolled into small round balls of dough. These were then to be thrown into the river to feed the fish. This ICBI Vegetarian Project presents a number of Chinese language source articles (translated into the English language for the first time), that clearly explain why it is that within the traditions of Chinese Buddhism, ordained monastics do not beg for their food, and adhere to a strictly vegetarian (and often vegan) diet. These documents can be accessed at the following link:
Chinese Buddhism & Vegetarianism
Not only is this the case for ordained monastics, but it is also true for many devout lay followers of the Dharma. Of course, not everyone can follow a strict vegetarian diet for various reasons relating to habit, socio-economic circumstance, peer pressure, and health related issues, etc., but everyone without exception can generate a mind-set premised upon compassion and loving kindness toward all living beings – which includes the welfare of animals.
Peace in the Dharma