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Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Sun Oct 20, 2013 7:32 pm
by Xanth
I'm finding this a very hard aspect of my spiritual growth... the changing of what I eat.
I've always been a heavy meat eater, but now I find that as I'm growing more and more my tastes are significantly changing... along with the very morale and ethical fibre of my being regarding those animals we kill on a daily basis in order for us to have food.

I find myself changing and wanting to become more vegetarian... I'll never become one 100%, but I can vastly reduce the amount of meat I can eat and I feel that the more I grow, the greater this desire becomes in myself.

As such, I'm looking, starting next spring, to become as self sufficient as possible... it's going to take a lot of work, but I think I'm up to it.

Anyone else have these kinds of feelings lately?

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Sun Oct 20, 2013 10:00 pm
by Methiculous
I like meat too.
But the way I see it, if I was to eat another animal, I should kill it myself. If I can't do that, then I shouldn't eat it.
I feel like a hypocrite eating a steak. I saw a show about appalling conditions on a pig farm in America and yet I still eat pork. I deal with some guilt issues.

But if you take it to the extreme, I can argue with a vegan, that to eat celery you must KILL the plant. To be a true vegan without the guilt of killing, you can only eat fruit that as fell off a tree naturally.

Anyway, I sometimes feel like life is one big practical joke. Someone made me and gave me life, but there is one catch: In order for me to live, I must KILL and eat other things that equally want to live. Who's to say I am better than them? But given the chance, I giant, Godzilla-sized chicken would peck me off the ground and eat me. And I would not consider the chicken immoral for doing that.

If you want to truly be spiritual and respect all life, curl up in a dirt patch and die so plants can grow. Or feed bacteria. They are hungry too you know, and what's one life compared to millions? If we truly appreciated all life we would do that. Isn't that what 'spiritual enlightenment' is all about? (I hyperbolize to make a point).

But if you want some good vegetarian recipes I know some. People often forget just how delicious vegetables and fruit can be. And soy beans or edamame have all the essential amino acids that meat has. There may be some great health benefits too!

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Sun Oct 20, 2013 10:32 pm
by Xanth
I find that the difference between eating steak to eating celery is that the celery isn't technically "conscious" in the same way a cow is.

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 3:25 am
by Majic
Its all conversion of energy so dont waste it and use only what you need and its easy. Say thanks to the bit of meat on the plate and say thanks to the plant growing in the ground and know that one day you will be food for plants.

Apart from that little rant I eat meat but source it from small farms or lifestyle blocks so the animals have been looked after and grazed well and I use a butcher that puts them in the field for a few days and when he kills them they most likely dont know they are dead.

If you really want to change I think the best way is to reduce what you use and dont waste but that can mean putting out extra food for birds or back in the ground not cook heaps and then consume it all. I am lucky that I am able to grow what I want but then anyone can make the effort if they wish so go for it and this might become an interesting thread.
The hard part is if you go to work or have no real control on parts of your day but that still leaves at least two meals that you can control.

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:10 pm
by Methiculous
Majic wrote:I am lucky that I am able to grow what I want but then anyone can make the effort if they wish so go for it and this might become an interesting thread.

We can't all do that in society given the sheer number of inhabitants on this planet. We need farming. We were all hunter/gatherers once and it works, but once you create a society with cities of millions, metropolises, it doesn't work. We need others to do the dirty work for us. But does it have to be so dirty and inhumane?

I too question the mind and consciousness and the fact that it was once attached to a filet mignon before I consume it, and get existential and think. I might as well be eating my own dog, if that cow had a name. Once you give a name to an animal it is no longer 'live stock', but a 'pet'.
Charlotte's Web delved into that, and influenced me as a child.

Xanth wrote:I find that the difference between eating steak to eating celery is that the celery isn't technically "conscious" in the same way a cow is.

So Xanth, you have no problem eating a life form, but you don't want to end a consciousness?

(I wrestle with this too and this is a good thread. We all need to think about it a little more).

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:57 pm
by Xanth
I honestly don't have a problem eating meat...
What I do have a problem with is how our society commercially farms the animals which we consume.

Watch a few food related documentaries on Netflix... and you'll probably change your mind too. :)

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Mon Oct 21, 2013 10:32 pm
by Methiculous
You're preaching to the choir. I agree.

It's the existential being and purpose of existence that I have a problem with, and finding people talk to is the problem.

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 7:27 am
by astralzombie
I think that I will always be a carnivore. I love all fruit that I have ever tasted and most vegies but they don't seem to agree with me.

Corn is a freak of nature and I stay at least two county lines away from it. There is no grain that is digestible to us in it's natural form so I'm not sure why we insist on making it a staple of most diets. I know the same can be said about most meats since we have a hard time breaking them down raw but that's why we have fire I suppose.

Spiritualism and food do go to together but not in the new age way of thinking. Be grateful for what you have to eat and honor the animal in whatever way you deem appropriate.

However, modern agriculture methods are deplorable and as an American, I apologize because it is our doing. No way around it.

If the rest of the world ate meat like we do, we would need seven more Earths just to grow the grain and grass to feed the animals. It takes something like ten pounds of grain to produce one pound of beef. That ten pounds of grain takes several acres of land to grow. It's unbelievable really.

Sorry guys, but I see so much greed here that I think we are on our way down and we will take the rest of you with us. I'm not preaching doom and gloom, that's not my style but this topic happens to hit a nerve. Not the initial topic but the one I spun it into. :)

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 1:35 pm
by Majic
Agree. I have no issues eating what I feel my body needs and that ranges from meatless meals to just a big juicy rare steak on its own to a lot of sugar or honey in water for a bike race. Its how the food is grown and harvested that matters and how close to un processed I can get it that concerns me and for ethical reasons as well as energy and nutrient value.

All these posts and I had a nice vivid this morning and I was in my kitchen serving up a big feed of stewed beef bones, all tender and juicy meat falling off the bone, surrounded by steamed potatoes and hemmed in by a big pile of fresh silver beet. Guess I know what I am having for T tonight

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Tue Oct 22, 2013 6:14 pm
by Methiculous
Imagine if dogs were farmed and lived and played in a field for there entire (albeit short) life?
Then one day, unbeknownst to them, POW!, they die and don't realize it.
I would have absolutely no immoral problem with that. In fact they might live a better life than me. Happy and fancy free with no worries.

Death is not the problem. It's the life part. And I know the way some animals are treated in commercial farms in America, and please don't watch any videos about the practice they perform in Korea when it comes to eating dogs. I made that mistake a few years ago and now it is indelibly printed in my mind. They beat them first for some reason and assume it tastes better that way. Hate to be a downer, but it's the truth.

But there is nothing immoral about eating another animal. It happens all the time in the animal kingdom, and most animals don't die of old age the way we do. They die while being ripped apart at the bellies while they watch helplessly. (I saw a Gazelle once get eaten by Cheetahs just that way). Again, I hate to bring people down.

Nature's cruel.

I once heard a loud buzzing noise in my house and went to investigate. It was a fly trapped in a web as a spider wrapped it up in it's thread. I felt sorry for the fly, but also realized if I saved it, I would deny the spider its well-deserved meal. So I had to just let it be. Nature happens whether we see it or not.

But what WE do in society can change and we have the power to do so if we all spoke up. But money is the problem and it's too cost efficient to turn farms into factories with deplorable conditions.

I will now get off my soap box. But to bring it back to spirituality: there is nothing wrong with ending a life to consume it and extend your own. If you don't, that life will die anyway and be fodder for bacteria and scavengers anyway. It all goes around and around and it's the circle of life. It's the life part, or livelihood, I have an issue with. And it's all because of this curse I have called, 'human-empathy'.

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 12:14 pm
by CFTraveler
I think when people get into spirituality, which in my view is, becoming more conscious of your place and interaction with the world in physical, energetic and spiritual ways, and finding a way to coexist and nurture your surroundings, which by the way, are part of you, as much as you are part of them, becoming conscious of what they eat becomes a thing.
When we think in terms of 'us eating them' or 'them eating us' we are functioning from a duality point of consciousness- which in a way, is necessary to survive, but at the same time, can lead to judgmental thinking and self-loathing. I think this is what happens with food-evangelism- someone becomes conscious in a sympathetic way of the pain of others (not just animals, people too) and decides to exist in a way that causes the least possible form of pain to others.
There is no problem with this, but when we come from a place of duality, this food militarism gets in the way, and defeats the purpose- some can bully others to the point of causing pain- emotional pain, if they see others indulging in eating things that they find objectionable.
We live in an energy based matrix and must exchange energy or stop existing in the physical- it's that simple. When we breathe, we take in oxygen and other gases, and give back CO2, which trees use during the day. Balance. We produce waste, which we don't like, but that waste is used by many organisms to feed themselves- plants, smaller organisms. We are part of our surroundings, part of nature. We coexist. When we say nature is cruel we're simply projecting our idea of 'cruel' over it. Nature just is.
I could say that it is advisable to strike a balance to stay harmonious, but I think we here all get that harmony is individual, everyone has different ideas of what 'right' is.
I have a friend who for example, will not eat mammals, because after all, we're mammals, but will eat chicken, because the nervous systems of birds are much more rudimentary than mammals (I see chickens as modern dinosaurs, but I also see other birds that have great intelligence- not chickens though). The thing is, that she is very judgmental in other ways and sometimes lacks empathy in other ways.
I think the key is empathy. If it hurts you emotionally to kill a cow (or to know that one died so that you could eat) then you shouldn't eat it- but make sure that your conviction is based on what you know and what you feel about it- and like someone said, thank the animal that gave its life so that you could live.
There's so many ways to look at this, that I think I'll stop now.

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 1:18 pm
by Szaxx
Many of these lives wouldn't have been created if the mechanistic food production system wasn't around. Unfortunately there's too many of us to sustain ourselves independently with our individualized ground space.
When things become overcrowded they stagnate. Food for the bacteria. Maybe they are the top of the food chain and we've decieved ourselves lol.
I have found interestingly enough that the more meditation I do, the less food I seem to need. Steaks are nice but not often desired. I hate greasy foods and have a big problem with certain natural foodstuffs.
Salads have always been nice but in the last decade I prefer a large mixed salad to a steak.
Must be an age thing... :lol:

Re: Spiritualism and Food

PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 4:14 pm
by Sinera
Methiculous wrote:But if you take it to the extreme, I can argue with a vegan, that to eat celery you must KILL the plant. To be a true vegan without the guilt of killing, you can only eat fruit that as fell off a tree naturally.

The last one is fruitarianism, they only eat 'fallen' fruits. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fruitarianism).

But that would also be too much for me (I'm on 'no meat' for quite a few years now. I do not use the word 'vegetarian' often when talking about it since somehow I don't like it.).

Yet, I do believe there is a difference and hence your first argument does not work so well.

Put simply: An apple tells you: pluck and bite into me, a pig doesn't. 8-)

Existentially I think that fruits and plants 'exist' for us to be harvested and consumed. It's ontological philosophy for me and I cannot prove it of course.

However, there is a "channeling" on the Monroe Explorer Tapes mentioning exactly what I said here. You might want to listen into it, it appears late at about min 42 on Explorer Series #10 Physical Existence: Perceptions from the Other Side.

http://www.monroeinstitute.org/resource ... rer-series

I also believe that this view is shown in shamanism where the consumed plants are expected to "melt" with the consciousness of the consumer for a while. So it is their 'purpose', they 'serve' us, not just as energy (food) source: Next to being food they e.g. also heal (a lot!), produce oxygen, create a habitat (for animals) and are essential for the biosphere in general, (some) create altereed states for us allowing us access to the wider reality, and last not least: maybe they even 'serve' by having an esthetic function (flowers) for humans, etc..

Many teachings and information "from over there" say they all have a kind of group consciousness anyway (although that is said about most lower animals too).