(This is quoted from The Divine Sense of Humour of Avatar Meher Baba by B. Kumar, p. 136. He quoted it from Lord Meher).
There are three things that are good for increasing and purifying the blood: pomegranates, grapes, and tomatoes; but grapes have one defect, they create bile. Okra is good for people with backaches. Potatoes give strength, but create gas. Lentils are good; beans pumpkins, cabbages and cauliflower are not nourishing, but are tasty. Eggplant is the worst possible thing for you. To eat eggplant is to commit suicide because it spoils the blood and turns it to water. Radishes create gas but they are good for the intestines. Spinach is also very good.
Rustom jokingly interjected, “Chicken is good because it has no sanskaras.”
“We are not talking of sanskaras, but of the quality of things,” corrected Baba. Then he continued:
Among non-vegetarian foods, fish is the best for the brain because it contains phosphorus. Eggs are good but are hard to digest. Among all food, milk is the best because nothing is killed in obtaining it. The next best are vegetables because life in them is not fully developed. The worst impressions lie in non-vegetarian food. By eating meat a person at once contacts animal sanskaras which stimulate anger and lust.
In vegetation forms, the gross and subtle bodies are developing, but not the mental body. In animal forms, the mental body begins its development. In the limited minds of animals exist anger and lust as they kill for food and sometimes for a mate.
Breaded eggplant is served every week at MPR, which means that the cook Allen (called “the Big Ayatollah” by one Irani) by now has caused innumerable unsuspecting pilgrims to commit suicide, unless this was a joke by Meher Baba, which it undoubtedly is. Eggplant is a staple for a good quarter of the population of this planet. Allen’s eggplant is also quite tasty. My mother’s attempts to prepare eggplant, however, were evidence that Meher Baba might not have been joking after all.
I personally believe that food given with love should always be eaten, no matter what it actually is. East Asian Buddhists, who are totally in accordance with Meher Baba on the subject of vegetarianism, generally don’t know that Gautama Lord Buddha did not teach vegetarianism. His instructions were to beg for your food, to only take as much as you can eat on that day, and to eat everything you recieve. That is much fiercer tapas (renunciate practice) than vegetarianism.
Like Lord Buddha, I am tapasvi by nature; I alternately eat whatever I want or nothing at all (in alternate conscious and definitely distinct stages), but in general I do not eat dead animal body parts unless they were given with love. In general I always take food given with love, even when it destroys my current vrat. But I do not take food that has been first offered to someone else. Used food is never offered when love is there.
Jai Meher Baba,