Tag Archives: Vegetarianism

Vegan Holiday Self-Defense

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HO! HO! HO! Merry Christmas to you all!

It’s the holidays and there are parties that all of us veggie lovers attend! However, as you are about to read, knowing a bit of what I call “holiday self-defense” might not be such a bad idea!

 

Vegan fitUVC’s Holiday Self-defense 101

However, that said, some veg lovers avoid these events like the plague, others go to these parties, bringing delicious vegetarian or vegan dishes with them, while a few have experiences like the one I’m about to share. I am sharing this woman’s story because I don’t believe she is alone with her experience. Yesterday, I came across her comment and asked if she would allow me share it with you all. Thankfully, she said yes! Here is what she wrote:

 

Overheard in the bathroom at work while I was apparently stealth peeing (or maybe they didn’t care who was in there):

 

Two ladies discussing the Meat Festival that was our floor party lunch last Friday. Steak (yum!), stuffed chicken breast (sigh of pleasure), etc. Oh, and there was salad and roasted vegetables for the two “vegetarians.” Smirk, eye roll, exasperated sighs (there is a crack in the stall and I saw the whole thing).

 

gossip women

First of all, there were not two vegetarians at the party. There was a vegetarian and a vegan. And the poor vegan couldn’t even eat the roasted vegetables because she wasn’t sure if they were roasted in butter or oil.

 

It’s just been a bad week in general. The holidays seem to bring it on. I was questioned at another party as to why I wasn’t trying the lobster casserole. I said I didn’t even eat lobster before I went vegetarian (the whole boiling it alive thing kind of got to me even as a clueless, meat-eating child), and I now don’t eat any seafood as a vegetarian. Duh

 

Then I got the whole “food chain” lecture about the “natural order” and how we’re superior to animals and were put on this earth to eat them. So I said would you eat your cat. Oh, that’s different.

 

Going out tonight to my first ever vegan restaurant experience. No one will ask why I’m not ordering meat – yay!

 

Thanks for letting me vent. Happy holidays!

 

You know this happens, right!? Any of us can find ourselves in one or both of these scenarios! Going vegan or vegetarian, you often become the “odd man out”, so to speak, unless you’re amongst “your own”! So how do you guard against situations like these? Do you take lessons in self-defense and go for a total smack down? (FYI: It is healthy and normal to fantasize about what you would like to do in situations like these! It only becomes “unhealthy” when you act it out! So go for an all out “smack down fantasy” if that’s what it takes!)

 

Women wrestlersFantasy Smack down!

 

All right, if you’ve read my postings or know me in person, you already know that I am not into these kinds of sports or taking people down…unless it’s the meat & dairy industry or corrupt politicians! I wouldn’t mind seeing them leave town! Let’s get back to the topic! What can you do if faced with co-workers, family members or others who want to give you a lecture or be nasty behind your back?

Reminder

Well, I don’t think there’s much you can do other than be YOU! The fact is that we can’t change people’s behavior. If they choose to be rude, ignorant and/or disrespectful behind your back…or directly to your face, then that’s on them! Remember, that you are not responsible for their behavior only for your own! I remind my students at school that, “If someone is being mean to you, it’s about them, not about you! A person who feels good about themselves never treats others in such a distasteful manner!” 

vegetarian

Your most powerful “weapon” against people like these is to bring amazing vegalicious food for them to try! Don’t even mention that it is vegan or vegetarian! Just bring a delicious dish or two. Even better, bake something so mind blowing that it leaves their small brains spinning! Trust me, they will be asking you for the recipes! Other than that, shrug it off, smile, and have fun at the party! It took me a long time to come to the point and say, “These people’s opinions aren’t important! Life is too short! I’m not going to waste it on people who put me down, criticize me, talk about me behind my back – who simply are not kind people!” I’ve even let go of family members who exhibit this undesirable behavior!  So girl friend, kick up your heels and smile…if that doesn’t work, go out to your car and scream loudly! Then return to the party and grab a cocktail or two! YOU deserve it, dear!

 

Kick up your heels

Happy Joyous Holidays everyone! 

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The Spiritual Side of Eating Plants

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Dear Readers,

There have been a few posts that I have written that have woken me in the middle of the night. They announce themselves, prodding me to get out of bed and not allowing me to go back to sleep until I have written them! This one that I’m about to write is one of these! It’s past three a.m. and here I am! I’m going to go out on a limb…because if I don’t I will be the one left hanging with no rest from those unseen forces that prod me on to write at times!

 

stairway_to_heaven

Today I’m going to talk about the spiritual aspects of being a plant-based eater versus on a Paleo or meat-based diet. My father was my first spiritual teacher. He was also the one who first taught me that eating animals was wrong on a spiritual level. Did I listen, change and get this when he first told me? Was he able to follow this principle himself? The answer is, “No!” So I’m not writing this in judgment of anyone who might still be eating animals! I couldn’t hear what he was saying at the time. My Dad was a vegetarian for twelve years until he met his new wife and then he went back to eating some meat! However, his view that “eating animals is morally & spiritually wrong” never faltered! He included fish into the equation! Today, I wish that my father had been a bit more graphic in his description of how animals are treated in factory farms. Not in a traumatizing way, such as setting me down to watch “Earthlings” – had this film been around, but perhaps a bit more direct. If books like, “That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals” by Ruby Roth had been around, I wish he could have introduced me to it in this way.

 

That's why we don't eat animalsThat’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals by Ruby Roth

 

My father also taught me that we are all on a different place on the spiritual ladder. In our life time, we either take a step or two up or we go down! That was at least his belief! Some are higher up on the ladder than others, think Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Rosa Parks, and so on! Were these people vegans or vegetarians? Probably not, with the exception of Mother Teresa, who lived in India, where they are predominantly on a vegetarian/vegan diet and Rosa Parks who was a vegetarian. Does being a vegan mean that someone is higher up on the ladder? I don’t know and don’t necessarily think so, but I do believe that vegans and vegetarians can be more compassionate and evolved beings when it comes to not only the animals, while also thinking about the earth and the future of our planet. They are obviously in touch with the fact that we are all interconnected! What has awoken me, is the fact that meat eating is linked to carnism – the opposite of veganism! It is earthbound, it is basic and primal!

 

Does this look like evolved behavior to you?

meat eater

I’m aware that this is an extreme photo and whoever posted it (on Blisstree – Thank you!) didn’t intend for it to look “evolved”!  (I’m including a link to their excellent debate on whether it is possible to eat meat humanely at the bottom of this post!) The bottom line is that current day practices of factory farming are beyond humane and/or evolved! All you have to do is watch a few films on Netflix to face that horrific reality, but how many people care, dare, or even want to? There are many fine films out there, not just from Peta, that shed light on these issues!

 

Factory farmingFactory Farming – A Short Video link at the end

 

Most people will not hear or get this message! As a vegan or someone on a plant-based diet – whatever you choose to call yourself – you must resolve to the fact that most people will not want to hear you, be able to hear you or even get what you are saying! It is definitely not worth getting into arguments over! This will not change anything or anyone…ever! Never has and never will! People completely shut down the moment you start arguing with them about, “My way is the right way!” Remember that the Paleo followers feel just as strongly as you do!

Journey of Souls

Having read, “Journey of Souls” by Michael Newton, PhD., years ago, this book comes back to mind when writing this post. In the book, Mr. Newton writes that most people on this planet aren’t that evolved or up on the spiritual ladder. They are living in basic (I’d dare say carnal) modes of operation, such as eating, sleeping, buying, consuming… Basically living in their own reality, not really caring about the greater picture, that of future generations. Thinking of the animals in factory farms is so far removed from their total consciousness – they won’t even give it a second thought. Because hey, meat comes neatly packaged with a stamp on it. There are no pair of eyes looking back nor a loudly crying mother cow hollering for her baby calf! Nope, the meat and dairy industry doesn’t want you to see any of their archaic and horrific practices! No label that says, “Ingest true pain and suffering with your next glass of milk or hamburger!” Nor does it say, Eat this delicacy today and have a heart attack or cancer in the very near future!” Clever marketing and billions of dollars in their pockets make sure that we avoid seeing the true reality behind those neat little packages, cartons, and tubs!

 

baby-jersey-cowA Sweet Baby Jersey Cow – by Just a Jersey Girl

 

Not having evolved much, I suspect, is perhaps also why it is a certain group of people keep talking about the end of life on earth as if it is a magical trip to Disney Land where everyone gets a fun pass and are led to the “front of the line”…that is, if you believe the way they do! And hey, before you go there, better make sure you put some money into the collection plates so they can arrive in style in their BMW’s and fancy clothes! After you have just listened to them talk about how “Human’s rule the earth and have dominion over the animals”! And I haven’t even touched on the millions of starving children and humans on this planet, who are starving for no good reason, just so humans can overeat, literally killing themselves with their diets in the developed world. I ask you to take a moment and ask yourself if this sounds evolved or even like spiritually sound practice?

 

fat-people sign…And nutritionally starving!

Why is eating a plant-strong diet more spiritually and morally sound? Why is it more evolved? Well for one, you are not causing harm to any sentient being. Even if a person didn’t kill the animal that they are eating, they are still participating in their demise! Also, you’re benefitting the greater good of our planet by not eating them. You obviously care about the future of the planet and its future generations, not just about your own little place in the world.

Lend-a-helping-handLend a Helping Hand

 

Is it possible to bring someone up the ladder with you or to lend them a helping hand? In my opinion, it is possible to show someone a different way and help them part way, but only they themselves can move up or down! That’s what free will is all about! Having had a similar conversation with a friend last weekend, this woman inspired me to use this elementary school analogy, “You can’t expect someone in Kindergarten to succeed at a Fifth-grade level. They would be completely lost!” The same goes for this whole issue! Unfortunately, the people around you must come to this realization on their own terms, in their own time and awakening. Using scorn, negativity, or being a militant vegan around these issues will never get anyone to “come to the light”! That said, Thankfully there are people out there, like Philip Wollen, who speak loud and clear on behalf of the animals and I suspect that the people who actually hear their message are ready to do so at that precise moment! What are your thoughts on this issue? I’ll end with this quote by Jeannette Rankin. The good news is that I truly believe that an awakening is taking place! The more people become awakened to the truth about the horrors of factory farming and the detrimental health effects of consuming animal products – the more evolved our planet will become and perhaps there is hope for a sustainable future after all!

Have a beautiful day, you amazing humans out there! I’m headed back to bed, I do believe that I’ll now be allowed to rest after getting this out on the table…so Good night!

 

Jeannette Rankin Quote

Also, do check out these fine links related to this issue:

Vegans in Stride

 

Blisstree Writers Debate: Is it Possible to Eat Meat Humanely?

 

Carnism.org / / Changing the Way We Think About Eating Animals

 

A Spiritual Perspective on Veganism

 

Mindblowing 6-Minute Factory Farming Video Might Turn You Into A Vegetarian

 

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I dedicate this post to my Dad and all the animals he loved!

Jeg savner dig, Far! Elsker dig af hele mit hjerte!!! xoxo

Here we are with a little growling dog that we met on a walk.

He became putty in our hands!

Anita Moorjani - Heaven

Afterword: Having recently read Anita Moorjani’s amazing book, Dying to Be Me, in it she shares how after her Near Death Experience (NDE), not even being able kill a mosquito because she was shown on the other side that all life is interconnected. Ultimately, what we do to “them” – or what we perceive as them – since there’s no separation – we do to ourselves!