Sunday, November 14, 2010

the 'why'.

on being vegan,

to make waves or not to make waves? this is my question. making waves may make change - uncontrollable change. i want to affect this world in a positive way, therefore, i have chosen a lifestyle that reflects this. i will answer 'why?' if asked. but to what degree? how much honesty can be digested in a sitting? i do not want to preach, demand or command. it is all too easy to point & scorn. nuturing an evolution of consciousness will take education, patience, & a strong will. if we are to be on the front lines of change, we must be brave, understanding, & willing to put aside our own judgemental slights in our behaviour & our language, as well as the cyclic nature of retribution. it takes strength, wisdom, & compassion to be that which people do not understand.

i'll pose a question: how would you know you live in a dark box unless there was a window? should i, can i be that window? no. i cannot be the idea, the window is the idea. the window must be discovered without manipulation. is this possible? breadcrumbs may be left to be found & digested slowly, with each new area being explored, each new territory assimilated. the light growing brighter, acclimatisation to brightness, an evolution of our senses.

there are two ideas that define me. if you must label me, think in these terms: freedom & compassion. i hold to no other. these are all there is.

okay, so a quick run down, a list of 'why's' & other answers...

* Compassion for all living things. yes, it's a buddhist notion, though i do not follow the religion per se. compassion for something as lowly as a rodent, speaks voluminous truths concerning the compassion we then bestow on our children, our elderly, our meek, our men, our women.

* Evolution of humanity to a higher plane of consciousness, to rise above our barbaric, animalistic nature. to utilise the intelligence we've earned & become something more. one cannot say we are not animals on one hand, then say it is our nature to kill & eat meat. realistically, we are animals - social, intelligent animals. if we are truly intellectually more capable than the others in the animal kingdom, our decorum should reflect this through our choices. note, however, that spiritually we are equal, & therefore, we must respect the threads of life woven around us.

* It not wrong to eat meat. it is not a moral issue.

* It's not that i do not like meat. i remember it tasting great.

* Yes, i despise the factory farming. i despise the disrespect for life. i despise thoughtlessness, & the unquestioning behaviour of the masses.

* I do not think myself as superior - morally or otherwise.

* I am not right & you are wrong. you are not wrong & i am right. nor am i wrong & you are right.

* I am not against you, nor should you be against me.

* Life is a series of decisions. i have found myself on this path because of a series of little decisions i have made.

* I am not convinced about the theory of eating right for your blood type. i am not privy to unquestionable scientific evidence that being vegan is harmful, or that some people need meat. though i think that we do not need to eat it, therefore, i do not.

* I do not want to kill or harm life. i do not know under what circumstances i would. perhaps, perhaps not. i do not live a life of hypotheticals. i live here. i live now. you should not speak for me, i do not speak for you. i have to live with my choices. i do not see with hindsight. with the knowledge i acquire, i assimilate the 'truths', & make decisions with which i can live.

* I do not jump on trends or bandwagons. each decision i have made is weighed with the knowledge i have at the given time. with new knowledge comes more decisions & compromises. my lifestyle choice affects all i do. the root is compassion, which i believe is the core of most religion & philosophy. the vegan aspect is a food choice, but the idea behind it, is my centre. it compells me. i try not to do without thinking, but it is the energy, the driving force behind all decisions.

* I have not subscribed to a dogma, in which i blindly follow rules that have been written from the divine, or from the assumptions & logic of one man. this does not mean i am without ethics - on the contrary. i believe in myself. i believe in my own powers of deduction from an accumulated range of knowledge. this road is a difficult one as you walk alone, even if there are others on the road with you. we can have shared experiences, though never identical, but we walk alone. we choose for ourselves, so we must believe in ourselves, be comfortable with ourselves. we must support each other in this. with this, we can change the world.

* Everyday i choose to love. everyday i choose to live a vegan lifestyle. everyday i choose to learn. everyday i make a decision to leave this world better than i found it. this is all i can hope to accomplish. meanwhile, i work at becoming an individual with my own thoughts & emotions that have been freed of predjudices, past dramas or societal rearing. i do not think myself superior. i am simply living outside the box because i choose to do so. my choices|actions should not give rise to resentment or self-deprication, but inspire thought & compassion.

i am writing this post to solidify my thoughts for when i am asked, 'why are you vegan?'. it's a big question, not one i can answer with a sound bite. it is for the environment. it is a philosophy. it is my way of life. thanks for taking the time to ask, but i do hope you do so in the spirit of learning, not for the sake of proving our self-worth through snap judgement of a concept that is not fully understood. one short answer, or one long conversation cannot encompass the full notion. it took a good while of mulling over the fine details, but i will remain on this road.

good enough.