I watched this doco a while ago and it really made me think differently about the way we look at animals.
^^^there is the link since she is not able to post it atm. 90 minute video.
I assume this is about eating meats, though I have not watched it. I recently posted something entitled “Responsibility to be Vegetarian” (http://www.highexistence.com/topic/responsibility-to-be-vegetarian/)
In this thread I discussed a conversation I had with a friend about his recent decision to go completely Vegan, and how critical he became about those who choose to eat meat as a result. I had an overwhelming number of responses from people who believed that eating animals is natural and proven biologically to be something we are meant to do. If I am correct about the direction of this topic, I would appreciate you reading that thread of mine and then come back here and reflecting upon it.
@lytning91, i dont know how i missed that thread, thank you for posting the link i will check it out now. :)
@lozzjd, Lovely =) Forewarning: people were kinda getting a LITTLE BIT rude about their beliefs
you said “there is actually a new, test-tube meat that was created from a stem cell of a cow.” which i had heard about before. the only thing that gets me with this is money is being wasted on this type of discovery when there are seemingly more important things we could be spending time and money researching.
@lytning91, i forgot to press reply to you for the above
@lozzjd, see, I respect you for saying “..but I don’t think I would object to someone else doing it if it was from an animal that died of natural causes.”
Honestly, and this is putting my heart on my sleeve, I know that what industries do to animals is cruel and they do it because there is a large demand for it and people are willing to ignore the ‘how’ so long as it is not really discussed. That part does bother me, and so I have frequently debated it.
However, though we do have a choice to maintain without it, the cost to do such a thing does not allow for our society to switch tracks, and there is also the fact that people have to take supplements due to a deficiency in several vitamins that, I believe, we are naturally meant to obtain through the consumption of meat.
I agree to disagree beyond this (because I just believe we are biologically meant to eat it [our teeth, general build, the bacteria in our tummies, etc.] ), with total respect and understanding for your disgust of the industry of meat (they definitely go too far).
You and I are cool because you did not say refuse to think about the facts, nor did you flat-out insult my opinion (as my friend basically did). If I had access to the meats raised under ‘free range, natural causes’ I would totally purchase those. Unfortunately, not only do I not have access, I also do not have the money required to keep up a natural diet like you prescribe to, and I am not even the worst off in this population.
I love this documentary and I feel that everybody should see it regardless of what you choose to eat. I like how it is split up into chapters with, I believe, only one part of it dedicated to food animals. I don’t really have a ton to say about it right now (about to go out) but I am a vegan. I saw the documentary once about 4 years ago or something and immediately went vegan for purely ethical reasons yet I still did not understand health. Because I only did it for one reason, I failed. After 3 months, I was back to eating eggs and dairy and then back to meat. Again about a year ago I really began studying nutrition as well as the ethics side and that made it blatantly obvious to me that being vegan is the right choice. I tend to not argue my side very well and tend to come off as “I’m better than you” but seriously, everyone should look into the health benefits as well as the ethical side of being vegan and consuming primarily whole plant foods and you will just be laughing. Thanks and seriously everyone should check out Earthlings it will change your life not just what you eat but I think it really creates empathy for other species.
Earthlings, together with Jonathan Safran Foer’s book Eating Animals, was the final nail in the coffin for me going vegetarian. I also really like the way they handle and portray other ways in which humans mistreat animals, like in the pet, drug and fur industries, like @adamd said.
@lytning91, i love the last point you made hehe :P
All I can say is that I respect both of you regardless, and that is all I seek in return. If ones opinions are so strong that one cannot maintain a brotherhood with those who see through different eyes, there is still maturing to be done.
Believe me, I continue to expand my horizons and think about things on more than one occasion (basically constantly). Truth be told, it brings me to tears to see animal abuse, and I know I would crumble to a pile of dust were I to ever be face to face with the producers of the meat I have consumed. I have never hunted, I would only do it for nourishment (I really don’t even know how), and I no doubt would be so traumatized by experiencing the horrors that I have read about firsthand in factories that I would be forced into changing.
That said, I wonder would it be better to hunt on my own than to feed the industry. I imagine the answer is an obvious yes, but I don’t know that I have it in me. Oh, what a mess!
Learning to hunt seems better than funding the death given in factories, and I do firmly believe we are all part of a cycle that transcends our understanding, such that, just as the shark eats the fish, the lion pounces the gazelle, and the owl clinches the field mouse, we too are placed in a position to seek nourishment from animals (though not at the pace the western world has currently set…not even close).
I respect everyone regardless, and I would do the same if I ever became any level of vegetarian or vegan (people seem to define it in various ways anyhow)
@lozzjd, you are simply magnificent.
@lytning91 I agree with you. Being preachy over vegetarianism or veganism can be very tiring for other people and I wouldn’t do it unless provoked. I have found that I prefer being polite and eating meat when there is no alternative — I don’t turn down meat now when it has been already cooked and prepared for me by others, I just don’t buy and cook meat on my own.
What’s more, I can understand perfecty what you are saying about eating other beings being a natural procedure. In fact, while I was reading this thread yesterday, I had this flash of understanding. We westerners have a problem with death and cannot understand its place in the circle of things. If some vegans had their way, no animal would ever die. But, unfortunately or maybe not so much, that’s not how life works and we must embrace nature’s wisdom. That’s of course completely different than taking advantage of that and raising factory-farmed animals as little more than cogs in the machine. It’s just looking at the bigger picture a bit differently. I think cultures that paid their respects to their hunted animals got it right.
@cubilone, Thank you for bringing your open mind to the conversation. One can always use such a person in discussions. I read in another thread (the one that I posted in here) that cows would not be able to fend for themselves if left to their own devices (or was it they would encroach on other species?). Either way, the key point was that keep a control on the cow population benefits the environment in some way. That being said, the way we keep control is horrible, and I completely agree with your view on that ‘machine.’
I, too, believe that those who can honor the death of their kill as a flow of energy from one to the next, on into the cycles of life, is of great wisdom indeed.
This is a pleasant discussion and I appreciate that. as background: I grew up on a farm. growing and eating my own veggies as well as raising/hunting/dressing my own meat. I’ve come to believe that all life – plant and animal – is worthy of our respect. I’m no better than the blueberry, the pumpkin, the fish, or the cat. Getting eaten by a bear while fly-fishing would be a particularly poetic way for me to go :-) When I’ve asked this question before it hasn’t been properly rec’d, but this may be the one discussion where it will be addressed without sanctimony:
How do you draw your personal lines, whereby animals (in the case of pescatarians, some animals) are in one way or another not to be eaten, while other forms of life are OK to produce and consume? Is it as simple as “has a CNS”? I’m honestly not trying to be inflammatory . . . if it’s simply a choice based on health with no morality, that’s a different thought. I spouted my soapbox thoughts on that topic in the Responsibility to be a Vegetarian thread.
personally, this has always been a curiosity for me. I honestly don’t know how to decide what living things have a sense of “quality of life” and which ones do not, so I simply avoid the decision entirely by making sure that whatever I consume – plant or animal – was well-treated and leave it at that. I’m open to new ways to think about this that are more nuanced, my proverbial cup is empty and waiting to be filled.
well, half-empty anyway . . .
@pipthecynical, a cow can however feel pain and fear
@daveb, “How do you draw your personal lines, whereby animals (in the case of pescatarians, some animals) are in one way or another not to be eaten, while other forms of life are OK to produce and consume?” I understand where your coming from with that actually although I dont have the answer to the question I do think it is a valid question to ask.
@pipthecynical,also I’ve heard according to research, cows are generally very intelligent animals who can remember things for a long time. Animal behaviorists have found that cows interact in socially complex ways, developing friendships over time and sometimes holding grudges against other cows who treat them badly.
@freespirit, there isn’t a like button…there is a LOVE button in the shape of a heart on every single person’s post to the top right corner.
As for his description of cows, I’m fairly certain that knowledge comes in the form of proven fact.
This source, in particular, mentions the effectiveness of numbing the cow before death to a degree of between 96-98%.
Aside from that, general biology can prove that we have higher thinking abilities that far surpass animals. If animals were able to think and feel in the same ways we are, then their continuation to eat meats would be 100% proof that we, too, should eat meat.
@lytning91 Hey man you mentioned vegan being too expensive? Rice, potatoes and other whole food starches are typical staples of a healthy vegan diet and they are some of the cheapest items at the grocery store. Drink water and supplement those with as much fruit and veg that you can afford and you are healthier than 99% of Americans for a small percentage of the cost. Avoid eating out, always think ahead and be prepared. It’s easy, you just have to want to do it ;)
@cubilone I have considered doing as you do. I’ve heard it called “freeganism” like you are typically veg*n but if you can get it for free – offered to you, dumpster dive, etc – it’s fair game. My only issue with that is that it removes a point to spread your message. If you are handed meat, and you silently eat it, nobody is learning. If I am offered meat, I (as politely as possible) turn it down and try to keep the conversation away from MY diet BUT if the host is interested, they will ask questions. This makes it a very comfortable situation where you can spread your message without being offensive. http://prime.peta.org/2011/01/fifty-repetitions?=cppenews0111
@pipthecynical What’s your issue with cows? You sound like Descarte lol… It seems you think all animals are machines and humans are the chosen species to rule the universe… Check out the book, Ishmael by Daniel Quinn. << Has nothing to do with veganism but great to help you contemplate your worldview and what mythology you are enacting.
I would very strongly recommend everyone contemplate the things they put in their mouth. You are what you eat.
@freespirit Also thanks a lot :D It’s a great site!
@freespirit, animals kill animals all the time. I have been talking about this plenty the past few days and I honestly believe that honoring the circle of like is what is required to be in touch with the way things should be.
I have no intention of having you believe anything, only you can shape that and I see no reason to try to push the immovable object.
That being said, I refer back to what I said: if we are no better than the animals we kill, then the fact that they kill in itself justifies our killing them, as well as our deaths and return to the earth and universe as energy.
@adamd, those staples are hardly enough to maintain a healthy lifestyle. A ton of starch is not going to do any favors for people without a ton of supplement, which is where the cost comes in. Starch = empty calories = weight gain (sometimes). “As much fruit and veggies as you can afford” would not be many, and certainly would drastically increase the food bill for a family currently living off of the meat industry. And also, you forget to mention the unnatural supplements that people would need to take to keep them from having deficiencies as a result of not eating the meat/meat products.
there is a nice discussion regarding exactly what overproducing of vegetation does to land, water, animals, and the environment. No matter where you look, the environment will subtract energy to sustain us.
My solution is not to fight over who wins this battle, because no one does. We coexist and give and take. When we die, our energy is returned to those from which it was borrowed, restarting the whole cycle over again. The real way to make a difference is to make sure that, whatever you consume, you do so with respect to the system (something we all forego all too often, myself included).
No one is better than anyone. We all just ARE. =)
@freespirit, Lions don’t eat every other animal that they COULD live off of. Dogs as pets is a tradition sourced in hunting for food, and has LONG since excused them from being part of our prey. Again, a circle, in which some animals can act with one another in a state of mutualism. (Also, people do it cats in other parts of the world [though they are hardly fit to eat, what with the lack of actual size and substane])
Now, what did I say? I said, “The real way to make a difference is to make sure that, whatever you consume, you do so with respect to the system .” Does a sick, money-driven market reflect this? NO. NOT ONE BIT. I never justified the actions of the sick people who churn out animals like that.
Yes, I mentioned the bolt gun thing only to fact check you. That was so you could see truth outside of this discussion.
What I do think is fine is when someone seeks out their own food, preying on their meal as their prey preyed on another meal, as that prey preyed on yet another meal…this is the way of the world.
@lytning91 I might not agree with you entirely, but it feels good politely disagreeing with no hurt feelings, on the other hand, I feel many vegetarians could gain from showing the respect you do for different opinions!
@adamd Why do you write it like this? veg*n? I think that it’s one of those things where the dilution of the message doesn’t really count. People who are ready for it will do it no matter what, no-one’s opinion on some table will have any influence either way, apart from some potential bad blood.
I also wrote my post on that other thread, I think it covers my middle-ground opinion nicely… Post #65
@cubilone, with respect like that, you and I will definitely carry on future, positive discussions when/if given the chance. I look forward to that time, if it comes.
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