Why are only Kshatriyas allowed to eat meat? Surely the Brahmins should be allowed to eat meat as well because they are at the top of the caste system. Also since Dalits aren't technically in the caste system do they still practice Ahimsa?

  • 3
    Ramayna mentions same rules for both Brahmans and Kshatriyas...and what do you mean by "Dalits aren't technically in the caste system"?..
    – YDS
    Jun 30, 2019 at 12:58
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    the simple answer is that kshatriyas need to fight, so meat is OK for them, and brahmins need to study so meat is not OK for them. But meat in olden days did not mean buying at local biryani shop or McDonalds or KFC. the meat has to be obtained as a remnant of complex rituals & sacrifice. The people at the 'top of caste system' have more restrictions than freedoms on what they can & cannot eat. heard of the quote - 'with great power comes great responsibility'.. similarly, 'with great respect comes great restrictions'
    – ram
    Jul 1, 2019 at 7:21

1 Answer 1


This concept that only Kshatriyas are allowed to eat meat where as others are not is not supported in the scriptures like Manu Smriti.

The rules of meat eating are the same for all the twice-born (Dvija) castes. The lawful consumption of meat is recommended but the opposite is discouraged. That's about it.

Manu Smriti 5.33. A twice-born man who knows the law, must not eat meat except in conformity with the law; for if he has eaten it unlawfully, he will, unable to save himself, be eaten after death by his (victims).

That means even a Brahmin can eat meat if its "lawful".

A Brahmin is allowed to eat meat under certain circumstances for example after sprinkling the meat with water infused with mantras.

5.36. A Brahmana must never eat (the flesh of animals unhallowed by Mantras; but, obedient to the primeval law, he may eat it, consecrated with Vedic texts.

4.27. A Brahmana, who keeps sacred fires, shall, if he desires to live long, not eat new grain or meat, without having offered the (Agrayana) Ishti with new grain and an animal-(sacrifice).

4.27 also shows that there is no complete ban on a Brahmin as far as eating meat is concerned.

Also, 5.33 shows if a Kshatriya eats meat unlawfully even then that's counted as an offence. He is not spared of the guilt just because he is a Kshatriya.


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