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Why is Vegetarianism Considered an Act of Compassion?

It struck me the other day that it is kind of sad when one thinks of not eating our younger brothers and sisters in the animal kingdom as being an act of unusual compassion. Why is not devouring them considered something unusual as compared to it being the norm?

It has been scientifically proven that we do not need to harm them and devour them for our sustenance. There are tons of other foods available from the plant kingdom for us to eat that are actually better for us. But it would seem some have become addicted to devouring meats and other animal products with not a single thought. They willingly believe the lie others have perpetrated on the public so they can sell their “products.” The tobacco industry did the same thing and generations died horrible deaths with preventable cancers and other diseases while misers filled their pockets. Likewise, animals lives are shortened and many a time they exist in the most vile conditions to fill the pockets of a handful of large corporations who keep churning out vast amounts of animal based products.

Many times i hear people tell me it is the taste of the meat products they crave, not realizing that most of the taste they covet is actually the spices added onto the meat, not the meat itself. Plus, nowadays there are many plant based substitutes which can be prepared to taste the same if not better than the meat products they mimic.

Also, i am wonderstruck at times at the restaurant adds on television. How cheaply they consider the life of a bird or animal or fish. When i see their bargain price, they are offering you a leg or wing of a chicken let’s say. They bred and raised this poor creature — many times in the most cramped and vile conditions to keep their costs down. They butchered, cut up and then cooked the chicken. Threw on spices and such to make it palpable. Tossed it into a cardboard bucket and are offering you the pieces at dollar or less per segment. Life is so cheap.

Or people will watch Animal Planet or some other channel and behold in awe how intelligent pigs can be. And yet nothing will stand in that same person’s way for want of some “ribs.” Do they really think the pig or cow or other creature is ignorant as it faces the slaughter? Do they not think that in its last moments the poor creature has nothing but resentment and hatred toward the one cutting its throat. We know how stress and anger release negative chemicals throughout the body. Do they not think such things linger in the corpse of the creature. And if they think such chemicals can be cooked away, then what nutrients are left in the corpse that are also not “cooked” away?

Compare that to an apple tree which naturally simply drops its fruit to the ground or it is picked. The tree and the fruit part ways relatively happily. The tree still goes on to live. The fruit too still carries life force in it and will even ripen if picked while still “green.” A corpse on the other hand begins to deteriorate immediately after death.

Compassion is a form of control over one’s self. Thought is given over each action, each thought, each word spoken. It is a conscious decision to be Loving and an awareness of others. Yes, it is easy to be aware of those near and dear to us, but why have a heart so small? Love is not finite. It should not encompass only a small portion of the world, but all creation. Does a king slaughter and devour his subjects simply because he has dominion over them?
We do not need to harm birds, fish or animals in order for us to live. We do not need to destroy their habitats in order to maintain our own. We can all live and thrive in this world together in peace. And if we think we cannot do it as part of our normal state of being because of our cravings, then we should become more aware and do it out of compassion.

Love . Light . Bliss

September 10, 2010

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