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Troy

ON FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT

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Troy

ON  FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT:

 

I've been thinking...

 

For those of you made uncomfortable or offended by any talk about the rights and protection of non-human animals or the benefits of a vegan diet, I beg you to reconsider being offended or defensive or annoyed at anyone coming from any direction in any fight to relieve the suffering of others.

 

These kinds of subjects are always very difficult for everyone involved. It is not meant to insult you or offend you or make you feel bad.  Instead of being offended or put off by people who are fighting the good fight, I invite you to be amazed and supportive of those who are willing to be so vulnerable and available and mocked and ridiculed and rejected and shut down and silenced in their efforts to make the world a better place for those who are suffering.

 

Sure, it might make you uncomfortable and you might feel someone is too aggressive or that there are better ways to go about it or that you have your personal justifications or guilt for not being on board, but this isn't about pushing a religion or a belief system or some ideology. People are fighting for the well-being and protection of vulnerable and exploited groups of sentient beings who feel and suffer. Any fight for the well-being of vulnerable humans or non-humans is a good fight. It's not always going to be comfortable or pretty.

 

There are going to be people who go about it aggressively and use shock tactics and even shame to get through to people because that's what gets through to some people. There are going to be people who are educational and inviting and point to the good you can do with even the smallest of changes because that is what gets through to some people. There are going to be people who protest and get political and focus on laws and enforcing changes for the world whether everyone is on board or not because that is how to get through to some people.  There are going to be people who quietly role model their choices and just let people ask questions as they feel curious and leave it at that because that's what gets through to some people.

 

Any good fight is going to have to be approached from all angles. You are going to see all of them. And ALL of them work for someone. 

 

So my plea to any of you who see these conversations about animals, diet, veganism, sexism, racism, speciesism, homophobia... anything that is a fight for the good of all, please... focus on the fact that people are willing to do this, even if it makes us uncomfortable, inconveniences us, and makes us feel guilty or shitty.

 

And please understand that no matter how on board we are or how resistant we are, we are going to feel shitty and guilty if we have any conscience at all, regardless of the tactic used to fight the good fight. Don't focus on the guilt or discomfort. Focus on the good fight and see if you can find YOUR way of being supportive, even if that means just ignoring the tactics that don't speak to you and finding the ones that do speak to you. 

 

One thing that is NEVER helpful is to tell people who are fighting the good fight that they should do it in a better or different or more appealing way. This is never helpful. People of Color, Gay people, Women, Immigrants... we are always told how we should be nicer or more pleasant or less angry or sweeter or whatever. No matter how helpful you may think it is to tell oppressed and vulnerable groups how they should be better or kinder in their way of fighting the good fight, this tactic is just a way to put the burden back on the vulnerable group instead of on us as individuals to do the work of listening, learning, and getting through your discomfort around the subject. 

 

When Black folks organize and protest, they are "violent and rioting" and "should be more civil."  When gay people are fighting for their rights, they are "shoving it down our throats" and should just keep it to themselves. When immigrants are seeking asylum, they are "taking away our jobs and milking the system" and should just go home. When women are strong and opinionated and speak up, they are "bitches" and should smile more. On and on....  

 

You get the idea. 

 

When people tell animal rights activists how they should be better at making others feel comfortable, it is the same thing as the above. It's a known tactic, sometimes intentional and sometimes unintentional, and it is never helpful.

 

So please reconsider your reactions and discomfort and guilt or shame or frustration or defenses when you see people fighting the good fight. Just hear them out or turn to the voices you can hear better. Don't shut down or shut them out. 

 

However annoying or off-putting or frustrating, these are people you want on the planet with you. People who give a shit and care and are willing to make fools of themselves to help us toward a better world and future. They are not trying to be better than you. They are trying to get us on board to be better, together.

 

Even if you cannot or will not join the good fight, you can help by just listening or just softening your defenses or quietly being happy that at least someone is taking on these battles for good.

 

Thank you for your consideration.

 

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Gloria

This is a powerful, comprehensive statement.  I really appreciate that you took the time to put it out there. Well done!

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Stickyflames

Thank you for caring.

I still find it so hard to understand that people only see shame, blame, guilt...when someone talks about veganism.

I was going to share this on facebook and then I thought “ I know how it goes...the “ good fight”...then I am going to just be explaining “ it’s not about YOU being BAD!”

 

I appreciated filmcrithulk, who recently went on a twitter rampage about veganism. He is not vegan at all, often posting gourmet meat dishes on twitter. Someone replied to one photo with “ fucking militant vegans” and he just went off on the guy.

His bottom line was basically to not shame people for caring, eat meat if you want, but recognize there are groups of people out there whose only agenda is to lessen the harm towards other beings. It really is that simple, regardless of the tactic used.

Sometimes the tactic is defensive and the person is coming from a place of imbalance, trigger, blind rage......they still care.

Sometimes the tactic is calm, listening, open....they still care.

 

Why this is difficult though , for a lot of people, is because they still believe they need meat for health. They have tested veganism themselves and for whatever reason decided it did not work for them. Then they talk to their trusted doctor and the doctor is fully on board with a return to meat. I really can not blame people for being fucking confused on this topic. For me, it is a clear choice....but I can’t blame people for not getting it or trusting it. The nutritional facts are not given to you by any outlet out there, you have to really actively look for them or be interested first.

I truly believe the day we have enough vocal nutritionalists/ doctors advocating that we are healthy on a plant based diet, will be a day where the shift will happen on it’s own.

A lot of vegans within my vegan community in victoria will say stuff like “ it shouldn’t matter if veganism was less healthy! I am willing to be weaker and suffer for the animals”. 

To me, that is dumb. It also is wrong. You can be strong, healthy, vibrant on a vegan diet....but you HAVE to do the work of looking into nutrition. It is going to be different than when you ate meat, other things will need to be considered.

I am against the idea that people should choose veganism solely out of compassion if they still believe it is harmful for their own bodies to do so.

Compassion is natural once we feel safe, once we trust the new way to support us.

So for me, the nutritional angle and clearing that up for people is more effective. 

That is just my way. Multiple people in my life have switched completely plant based once they understood they will be safe. I see it time and time again. People Do care but they also care about themselves and their family ( I do not see the selfishness here as a negative quality). For me, the question is always “ How can I make this feel safe for you? As if it was a sane choice for YOU”. 

I love your post because it invites others to see that all these screaming people just fucking CARE about something.

For me the good fight also includes patience, and trying to find an angle that helps someone trust veganism. That is my responsibility if I care about this cause.

I can invite people to take responsibility for how they percieve my loud caring, and that might reach 1 or 2 people who were already basically on board to begin with.

The venting of that is satisfying.

My responsibility is still going to be “ how do i reach them? How do I get their trust?”

That is my responsibility as someone who cares. 

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Kater Potater

Thank you for this post. This is a big part of what the Michael Teachings is all about, I feel.

 

There is a brilliant 9 part docuseries out right now called "iThrive! Rising From the Depths of Diabetes & Obesity."by Jon McMahon. I started watching it out of curiosity. I had no idea I would be solidly convinced becoming a vegan is something I need to do and I still have 5 episodes left to watch.

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AnnaD

Reposted from Energy Report November 2018.

 

My vegan action involves acknowledging that killing of animals makes meat, dairy and eggs. Animals die at our pleasure (???not pleasure, animals don't want to die, but humans do not give the animals a choice = normalised "hidden" institutionalised holocaust).

I am vegan for the animals first and my health. However my animal compassion comes first. 

 

On my Facebook wall, everyday, I post graphic slaughterhouse images, to all of my friends, amongst the non slaughterhouse posts I make. My Facebook wall is not only a platform for my political agenda. I also post Happy things! Funny things! photos of myself doing stuff. It is a deliberately diverse posting forum because I cannot stand looking at slaughterhouse imagery and the reality of the unconsenting horror that occurs in shifts, in slaughterhouses around the world. The animals do scream and try to keep themselves alive. The animals put up a fight. Think of what it would be like to be that animal, unanaesthetised, struggling, and a slaughterperson approaches you with a stun gun/kill machinery. You would struggle and try to fight your unwilling imminent death. This reality is awful. 

 

Avoiding this reality is worse. 

 

As @Stickyflames has referred already, let your shame inform you, if shame, in this regard, to eating meat, eating dairy, eating animals, has connected with you that murder has occurred to the animals that have provided you with meat, dairy, or eggs (or anything animal related). If you feel shame, or guilt, or remorse, or a sense of not wanting to harm those animals, because you sense that there might be other options for getting those tastes out of vegan food are present, then, experiment with that. Try those vegan bacons out. They are there. You do not have to harm an animal to get the tastes that you want. 

 

Any taste that you crave, can be made vegan. Anything. 

Most people who are deemed living in "3rd world countries" eat plant based, only, they don't call it that because culturally they grow and consume millet, quinoa, rice, beans, legumes, soy, tempeh anyway. They manage already and add herbs, garlic, veges they can grow and cook them in interesting ways to make the food enjoyable. They are feeding their kids too. Vegan food is junk food, it is healthy food, it is full on flavour food. Whatever flavour you crave comes from plants whether you cook with meat/dairy or vegan. The flavours come from the plants. 

I am a vegan first because harming anything makes me feel awful, and a cook second. I love cooking. I embarked only two years ago on a vegan journey, after being vegetarian by my own choice, from age 21. I wondered if I could get those flavours happening. 

 

I live in New Zealand, a country whose economy is based on sheep and beef production firstly, and dairy secondary. We also have the highest rates of bowel cancer. I am part of the medical team who sees the impact of meat eating on bowels. I also am part of the team performing angioplasty, stenosis of arteries due to high dairy consumption. A lot of health spending on bowel cancer and blocked arteries from diagnosis to ongoing treatment, would reduce vastly by eating plant based. (Drs Dean Ornish, Michael Greger, Caldwell Esselstyn, John McDougall, Neal Barnard, Milton Mills, Michael Klaper, Joel Fuhrman, T.Colin Campbell, Gabriel Cousens). Living in New Zealand is a small market where I cannot buy the range of vegan food products available within the US/Canada/UK/Australia. I have managed. I am on a Nurses wage $70,000.00 pa fulltime.  I work 32 hours per week, I am paying a mortgage. I do not have kids. I have 3 cats and (not kidding 5 orangutans in a sanctuary). I pay for all of this.

 

My partner and I dedicate a total of $300.00 jointly on food each week. That is food and stuff like soap, toilet paper, laundry powder, deodorant. 

 

I make my own yoghurt, aioli, sour creams, hummus, marinades, Maori bread, bread rolls, sauerkraut, water kefir, we have a garden and grow salad greens ie spinach, rainbow chard, spring onions, herbs, avocados, apples, lemons, mandarins. In summertime there are tomatoes, cucumbers and capsicums as well. 

 

My point is, if you have the inclination, you can make a lot of your own food. If you have land, or a sunny balcony, you can experiment and see what grows in your region. What will grow depends greatly on the zone you are living in, but, most zones have their veges and fruit that are particular to those zones. 

 

The worst thing about meat eating and dairy consumption is the murder that makes the meat and dairy. The animals do not want to die. Overlooking that you pay for their murder, makes you complicit in supporting their murder. So the tactics that can be used to enable Veganism, are confronting the horror of the industries of the slaughterhouse, of the dairy farm, of the egg and chicken farm, of the pig farm, of the sheep and beef farm, and acknowledging that if you aren't vegan, or vegetarian, then you are financially supporting the continuing commissioned murder of animals for your palate pleasure. If you want those flavours from a plant based diet I am here to help. It is the part that I enjoy. 

 

You can make a connection between an animal dying for your pleasure, and the alternative of tasting the same flavours coming from plant based food, from vegan food, without resorting to harming/killing an animal. I can help you.

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Sky Goldy

Ok, let me see, people are paying $€£ to have chicks piglets cows dogs horses and what not, to be raised and slaughtered for their breakfast and dinner plate, and I am aggressive ?

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Troy
3 hours ago, Sky Goldy said:

Ok, let me see, people are paying $€£ to have chicks piglets cows dogs horses and what not, to be raised and slaughtered for their breakfast and dinner plate, and I am aggressive ?

 

Right? It boggles the mind. 

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Sam K

I'm not vegan or vegetarian yet, though I've cut out several particular meats that I just can't abide, animals that are so obviously self-aware that I fail to see how anyone's ever brought themselves to eat them.  Pigs are the main one, along with octopus, turkey, and some more exotic meats that don't come up much anyway. I know the distinction probably seems absurd to vegans, and I acknowledge that it's ultimately arbitrary, but it's the best I can do in my current living situation.  I intend to go further once I'm better situated; beef is certainly first on the (heh) chopping block.  Even now, I can barely tolerate it.

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Luka

Fundamentally I don't care what other people eat or do. I'm not responsible for their actions, I'm responsible only for my own actions. Only thing that might trigger me in these conversations is the lying, projections and whataboutism I'm expected to believe. I see through BS, and I don't take it. Be at least honest. You want to eat meat? Then do it. I don't care about your excuses, I can see through them. Don't expect me to act like I believe in them and don't expect me to tell you that I accept your excuses and believe your lies as much as  you do. Own your meat eating then. Do it and don't complain that I make you feel bad. If you wouldn't feel bad about it yourself, you wouldn't give two fucks about if I believe and validate your excuses. It is your choice to live in cognitive dissonance, and you expect me to tell you it is alright to do so and validate it for you. I won't. Your choice, you own it.

 

What really pisses me off is the constant declarations of how "hard" it is to be on plant based diet and be healthy, how unhealthy it is to you, how you will lack this or that yadda yadda yadda. Lies, slanders, bullshit. This is all manipulation supported by corporations, no, actually totally paid by them. When dairy consumption goes down, expect the adds and "Information" and "education" about how healthy milk is and how it supports your health and how it is necessary for your general health. Vegans are attacked because we have to take one supplement, B12. Look how big the supplement market is. Who uses all those supplements? Not vegans, I can tell you. There is not enough of us to use even a fraction of all those supplements. So it is omnivores using them, and NO ONE sees anything wrong in it. Hypocrisy and double standards all around us. Animals are given B12 so you can get it in your meat. They don't produce it either, it is produced by a bacteria in ground. All the hysteria about protein? The amount of protein that  is recommended is much higher than you actually need. No one needs 100 grams of protein a day. Vegan bodybuilders like Jon Venus have proved it many times over.

Too much protein is bad for your kidneys. I've been in shock of the amount of kidney stones Americans have.

 

There is so much marketing BS going around, and people take it hook, line and sinker. Being vegan is not hard, it is not expensive (I eat higher quality food products now than before and spend equal amount of money in food than before), and it 100% is not bad for your health. This begins to feel like Trumps presidency: No matter what amounts of facts are given, part of people believe what they want. Carbohydrates are your bodies chosen fuel. There is no way complex carbohydrates can harm your body, your body was made to consume them. What is bad for your body is refined sugar and swimming in fat, no matter what the fat is. 100 g of coconut oil is no better than 100 g of lard, but at least coconut oil was made without killing a pig.

 

For ages it has been known that people who eat plant based diets live longer and are healthier. This used to be common knowledge. Then Atkins happened, and meat industry realised they can make people eat even more meat, and dairy industry realised they can make people believe butter is actually healthy for you, no matter what all those pesky scientists say about your glogged arteries. This makes my blood boil from legit rage. This is a scam of a century.

Edited by Luka
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Luka
52 minutes ago, Sam K said:

I'm not vegan or vegetarian yet, though I've cut out several particular meats that I just can't abide, animals that are so obviously self-aware that I fail to see how anyone's ever brought themselves to eat them.  Pigs are the main one, along with octopus, turkey, and some more exotic meats that don't come up much anyway. I know the distinction probably seems absurd to vegans, and I acknowledge that it's ultimately arbitrary, but it's the best I can do in my current living situation.  I intend to go further once I'm better situated; beef is certainly first on the (heh) chopping block.  Even now, I can barely tolerate it.

 

I was vegetarian for years before going full vegan. I also believe that doing it slowly in your own time is good way to go. It is easier, and you probably will make lasting changes that way. For me the hardest thing to eat was chicken. Chicken meat was my favorite. But I swear it blaimed me from the plate. I looked at the chicken breast, my favorite food, and all I could think about was how it once was a real bird ( I really like birds). Now it was dead on my plate, and not only that, its short life must've been miserable. At that point I went vegetarian and was like that about five years. I also believed I can't afford being vegan. Surprise was real when I finally went full vegan and realised how cheap it actually is. The trick is to leave all processed foods in shop. Whole foods are pretty cheap. There is plenty of tubers, beans, legumes, grains, fruits and vegetables to eat. Internet is full of recipes. Youtube has videos, I was really inspired by all food preparation videos.

 

If possible, try being vegetarian for few months. Even one month. I had to make three tries before it stuck. Every attempt was a learning experience. I do like to try things out, and I know others might not find it as much fun as I do. But for me the best thing was to go full vegan, that made real difference in my health and in my way of living.

Edited by Luka
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SunSand

Thank you, Troy. This has been a bit of a topic of confusion myself in how to handle such situations or how to see the truth in it.  I work with several people who tend to look down on vegetarianism and veganism and state that they don't like 'militant vegans' who tell them what to do. They are clearly uncomfortable whenever veganism or vegetarianism is brought up even as just a mention. I am not vegan or vegetarian myself (yet), but I can respect an admire the dedication in living a more compassionate lifestyle, but at the same time I can see how they are uncomfortable with someone who is very passionate about the topic.

I often show that I am clearly uncomfortable when people push me to eat things like whale meat (saying it is just a big fish in the ocean), octopus, or other such creatures I know who have a very high degree of sentience. Eating such beings are against my principles even though I love to eat food. It is not like I want to be obstinate against a part of a culture, it is just that I enjoy myself and life better that way. It would be nice for people to understand and respect that. And frankly, I hardly ever get sick these days eating more plants than meat (compared to some people i know, haha 😛). 

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Troy
7 hours ago, Luka said:

Carbohydrates are your bodies chosen fuel. There is no way complex carbohydrates can harm your body, your body was made to consume them. What is bad for your body is refined sugar and swimming in fat, no matter what the fat is. 100 g of coconut oil is no better than 100 g of lard, but at least coconut oil was made without killing a pig.

 

When I was diagnosed with Diabetes, I started reading up on how to reverse it. The best and most unbiased research was telling me that a high-carb, low-fat wholefood (not refined) diet was the solution along with exercise, of course. Sugar was even fine, as long as it wasn't something like high fructose corn syrup. They are finding sugar to be less and less a factor, and more that so much fat (of any kind) and processed foods are what contribute to so many illnesses. It never occurred to me that even the "healthiest" of cooking oils was part of the family of the most highly-processed and refined foods on the planet. They are such a poison, particularly in large quantities for long periods of time, like most of us ingest them. I can't avoid all of them and I don't feel the need to, but I cut my excessive oil intake down to about 5% of what it was. Within a couple of weeks, my sugar levels were stable again even without medication. Since then, I have stayed stable and shown no signs of diabetes since my diagnosis. Of course, once you are diagnosed, you are marked for life so I am still using western medicine for some management (just in case), but according to my doctors, my diet contributed greatly to the quick stabilization and potential reversal of this diagnosis.

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Hjortur

A work college of mine is following the so called Stone Age or Atkins diet. Her husband was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, two years ago. They started following this strict diet regime and his diabetes is now under control. I don’t think it was due to the diet though but rather that he had become conscious about his food intake. She still misses bread, cakes and sweets though and sometimes she will succumb to the temptation when we are having lunch.

 

From research on the collagen protein found in teeth and bone, scientists have pieced together the food habits of our ancestors. It appears that they were not following this Stone Age diet although living in that time period. This presumption was based on the amount of bones and seashells found in archeological sites. They actually lived a balanced diet that included large amount of starch from roots along with fruits and vegetables. Of course it also included some amount of fish and meat. 

 

It is good to be conscious about what you eat and the ethics of the foods origins. My concern is the ecology and fairness behind not only the food but also other products. We buy eggs and milk from nearby farm along with locally produced meat. All other imports we buy are Fair Trade marked. The CO2 stamp is also very important. The clothes too! Consider the poverty and misery of the poor children making the brand clothing! When possible, I will be changing to electrical or hydrogen car. I care for and love mother nature.

 

There is a lot going on in the world in these times, the climate change is imminent and the world is in tumult. Maybe soon our mother will give us a reminder, maybe it already has started. I think our population will go down and it will hurt and be heartbreaking to witness.

 

Food, water and fruitful land areas will then become scarce and sought after. When all the climate wars have subsided and we are one with nature once more, who will care for what diets to follow.

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AnnaD

@Hjortur, you address some valid points. For me, I think the thing is, regardless of what our ancestors did, we have more choices now to eat harm free than we ever have, and we can eat vegan if we want to. 

 

Every food choice we make as adults living now comes down to what we know is healthy and how much we want to eat in a particular way. I think making your own choices is honouring what you want and surely that doesn't dishonour your ancestors...

 

Also being vegan excludes fish. I didn't mention that before, but hardcore veganism, which I am working towards, is eating plant based only. 

 

I think the guiding principles for my eating, are making choices that eliminate harm to any living thing. As we get older in soul age, we have more experience to make our choices, and we have more awareness to work with to eliminate harm to fellow earth creatures. Knowing this, why would anyone want to continue to eat animals? The degrees of commitment to not eating animals is a vast scale for sure, but for me it is very simple. First do no harm. I take that to heart. That is the right choice for me, and I do not want others to eat animals either. That is not my choice to decide what others eat. I do however, have a very strong and passionate drive to eliminate harm to animals. And I will continue to tell the truth transparently about the cruelty involved in slaughterhouses, dairy farms, factory farming, - any form of animal exploitation. Ignoring the cruelty involved in ones meat is the biggest insult to compassion, and it is the biggest version of ongoing human apathy. If no one needed to demonstrate to another human being that advocacy was required to inform/communicate/broadcast the cruelty that is involved in animals raised for meat and dairy, then that is what I am waiting for. Until then, I will acknowledge and communicate this cruelty, amongst other strategies of posting beautiful vegan meals, their recipes, and animals being happy being free and protected from exploitation.

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AnnaD
Troy

I'll just put this here. Sometimes it can be really helpful to see what it looks like to argue against the well-being of animals. And the amazing responses from this great educator.

 

 

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AnnaD

@Hjortur, human breast milk is for human babies so that is vegan.. 

 

Which products do you think vegan food is imitating? Vegan food imitates all sorts of meat/dairy/egg/fish/game alternatives. Why? Because providing vegan alternatives for animal products enables people to get the same flavours without harming any animals.

Edited by AnnaD
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AnnaD

I understand and accept your opinions @Hjortur. 

I accept that we arise from different cultures. My Mother's family has a sheep and beef farm. My girlfriend's family has a sheep and beef farm. My girlfriend's father is a very kind man, despite the fact that he raises sheep and beef for killing. 

 

I have a lot of respect for my girlfriends father because he is an old school pre factory farm farmer,  in that the sheep and cows are free range living on grassland, and he cares for his animals, obviously not enough to be vegetarian or vegan, but, he has pet lambs (??), Mary for instance, is a pet sheep. He has had an Anna pet lamb and various others who were allowed to live a good free range, free health care life until they died naturally. He is a farmer who loves his animals, as paradoxical as that seems. He has cared for and worked with, about 9 dogs working as sheepdogs, whom he has very close and loving relationships with. My girlfriend years ago found an abandoned cat wandering around their farm and gave it to her father as a surprise birthday gift. That cat is doted on. The farmdog that he has now, was once an outdoors only dog, but she has since become an indoors dog as well. My girlfriend's Father is nearing 80 years old and although his wife will receive rest home care soon, he is still fit and well. To describe the bond that he has with Flo, his sheepdog/pet, is telling when his wife said" I guess you will be coming to the rest home with me when I go?" and he says "No, I have my dog and cat to look after, and the farm. I will only go if the dog and cat can come to the rest home too". He loves his cat and dog that he won't leave the farm unless the pets can come as well.

 

I disagree with animal farming, but, some farmers do care for their animals very well, although their animals are still sent to the slaughterhouse finally for meat. I do not deny that some farmers care. I see more caring in the old school pre factory farming farmers, than factory farmers. Factory Farmers are a very cruel breed. 

Edited by AnnaD
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Patty

I finally had a chance to get caught up on this thread. You all have very interesting points, and I feel very supportive of anyone who is vegan. I enjoyed reading about @Luka's transition and would like to hear more stories like that -- what were your initial steps towards becoming vegan? Did you go off animal products all at once or gradually? What were the easiest changes? The most challenging? 

 

I'm not sure I'll ever be fully vegan - or even vegetarian - but I would like to cut back on animal products for the sake of the environment and to be more compassionate. It seems like it's getting easier now that there are more quality options available. What vegan products do you all use that act as replacements for the animal products? I appreciate that @AnnaDmakes a lot of her own products, but I don't have the creativity, time, or inclination to do the same - at least not right now. 

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Troy

@Hjortur Thank you for your thoughtful and patient approach to this subject. My response here is given with the greatest respect and understanding. So please know that my response is only to help clarify a perspective overall, not to negate your personal experience. I appreciate your idylic view and experience of killing animals for food, but there a few things to consider:

 

One is that this is not the norm. Not by a long-shot. Nearly 100% of what people consume and wear from animals comes from factory farming. So when people bring up extremely rare idyllic and local scenarios, it does work against the cause. I'm only telling you this because your intention is probably not meant to undermine those who are working so hard to bring some awareness to this horrific industry that dominates the world, but when you tell stories like this, it can halt others from trying to understand and process the truth of the cause because they shrug in relief that it's not really as bad as they thought. Sharing rare and personal anecdotes only serves to give others a way out from reconsidering the harsh reality of animal exploitation. That's just something to consider for the future. My philosophy is that if we can't or won't contribute to a good cause, we can at least not make it harder for those fighting the good fight. Most people don't realize how much harder they make it for those on the frontlines.

 

The other concern is that these kinds of stories help me to see that the point of our cause may be misunderstood or not fully understood. We want to end all unnecessary exploitation and harm to animals, including HUMAN animals. Telling stories like these makes it seem romantic and nostalgic and necessary to harm animals. These personal anecdotes are lovely and moving and important, but not very helpful in response to a cause that is trying to help eliminate the necessity for harming and killing to survive. The great thing about the vegan/plant-based movement is that we are well aware that there are many cultures and circumstances where people cannot avoid harming animals because of survival or economic purposes, so this movement accounts for this and a major focus includes developing better, healthier, affordable and accessible alternatives that can feed the masses. We can feed far more people with plant-based alternatives than we can using animal flesh and byproducts. This is also one of the reasons for the replication of flavor and texture of animal products. This helps us to feed the masses with something that is familiar and appealing on the commercial and profitable level that then helps fund the humanitarian efforts. So many vegan companies include in their business and educational plans the effort to help humans across the globe. (I think that's the only way future business of any kind will survive. It's a mature soul movement.)

 

And finally... please bear with me in this comparison because I have to make a point, but if you heard a serial killer describe how his victims aren't really victims because he prays over them and appreciates them and feels at one with them, you would probably think he is nuts. I'm not comparing meat eaters to serial killers, but the concept is just as unsettling, right? Or, let's say you heard a slave owner defend slavery because HE says his slaves are happy and healthy and they live good lives just because he says so, regardless of what the slaves say or want.  This comparison might make it easier to hear how bizarre it is for anyone to speak in favor of slavery, harm, and killing and do so on behalf of those we are enslaving, hurting, and killing. It's really disturbing if you think about it and actually follow that logic, right? I'm just offering these comparisons up to try to get across that idyllic slavery and slaughter is still slavery and slaughter. Having gratitude for the lives we destroy only benefits ourselves and doesn't mean shit to those we kill.

 

I hope I responded to all of your points and did so respectfully and thoughtfully. I appreciate the conversation and even if you or others cannot or will not make the leap to vegan, it truly helps if you at least understand the point of our cause and the beneficial impact that you can support just by minimizing anything that undermines it.

 

 

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Liisa

I've been going vegan for a couple of years. I don't buy any animal products in foods, but I still haven't turned down if I am being offered cake, for example, that has some dairy in it. Anyway, since making the decision to drop dairy and eggs from the foods that I buy home, I haven't had any cravings whatsoever. They just went away immediately. It's not hard to do! Meat I gave up a long time ago. 

 

But, I feel horrible right now. I was in a car accident yesterday and hit a reindeer on a dark road. So I basically killed a large animal. I feel like a reckless idiot. Why did I drive so fast, why didn't I leave when it was still daylight? I could have made better choices, I was encouraged to do so, too. This is the season for reindeer accidents, and they happen in thousands, the farms let them roam around freely. 

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Hjortur

@TroyI have now deleted all my posts as they are not in line with this discussion. Please feel free to delete all responding answers. 

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KurtisM

Hey @Troy, I just want to add something.

Beforehand, you channeled the 7 Waves and Elements of a Teaching.

I realized in the last year that any movement is a teaching, so that includes Veganism.

From what I have researched, Veganism is in Element 2 of SHARING and Wave 6 of COHESION.

It may have moved into that wave relatively recently- within the last 2 years recent.

 

When you spoke about how the Michael Teachings have evolved, you mentioned that its Element 2 Wave 6 was spent when Michael Students were trying to structure how the teaching is to be shared.

I think that Veganism is at that same point in evolution. In that we're trying to structure how it is shared.

The -Pole here is termed STRUCTURED PROSELYTIZATION, while the +Pole is FOUNDATIONAL PROPAGATION.

But you mentioned that Wave 7 of COMPREHENSION resulted when Michael Students relinquished any need for a specific way of sharing. So perhaps the same will happen with veganism? Where we will see how all methods of sharing can contribute.

 

Also if we're nearing Wave 7 of Comprehension that means the ELEMENT OF APPLICATION is coming and that means veganism is getting closer to becoming applicable for all.

So if you feel despair and dismay over the resistance, remember the teaching will keep and is still going/moving/growing.

Edited by KurtisM
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