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Institute for Jedi Realist Studies - Choices - Page 2 - Institute for Jedi Realist Studies

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Choices

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Kol Drake replied the topic: Re:Choices

It is as the thread title states -- Choices.

There are many cultures in the east, (jain/hindust/buddhist), even living in mountain areas, that have been avoiding meat for centuries. Because these cultures has been based on different viewpoints than most native America cultures have, they just would not settle in an area which forced them to eat meat to survive. Native Americans and other indigenous cultures -- once 'we' (early settlers) pushed them from their normal range of living areas -- forced them into the practice of killing animals to survive. On the prairies and deserts, they did not have as wide a range of vegetables to use to make sure they got enough protein, iron, etc. There were no vegan co-ops, no soy products, no recycled plastic footwear. They needed to use animal products to survive. If you did not kill enough deer, your village may very well have starved to death that winter.

There is a similarity to people who currently live in the northern areas of Russia, Finland, Sweden and Norway. It has been said that they have to eat fish and meat because the ground is covered by permafrost and snow for many months, so growing/collecting plants is impossible. But again, if they would be against eating fish and meat, they would have had to migrate long distances from these areas to present new food/eating opportunities. I suppose no different if humans who are against eating humans never would settle in an area if they would have to kill and eat other humans in order to survive there.

That is a far cry from the current situation we are in. We can CHOOSE to forgo meat and animal products. There were and still are people on this planet who need to kill animals to survive. We members of industrialized Western societies have the ability to shop at natural health food stores and make choices based on ethics rather than survival.

And yes, there are whole factions showing 'facts' which indicate that nearly all animals (to one degree or another) may fall under the definition of sentient. Does this mean we should all stop eating meat and start treating them like equals? I would think not. Perhaps though, we should consider treating them (ie. raising them) with more respect instead of the corporate meat mills we have today. Or at least try to handle them in a fashion similar to the cows, etc. which are done 'kosher'.

Then again, 'us' first world, modern folk, can wave the whole consciousness and concern flag and point to several cultures who have been vegan for several thousand years and say -- if it's good enough for them then 'we' can do it to prove our own holier than thou status...

DASTUR BODE, a High Priest of the Zoroastrian religion, explained that their culture means right living and includes a proper diet. Though our cultures may appear different we are not divided by them for there is an inner culture revealed by self knowledge and we must grow in unity through self realisation.

When we come to know that the macrocosm and the microcosm are the same in essence we see that we are not mere creatures and -brothers but associates of the Creator.

Speaking of the Aryan culture, the oldest in the world Bode said, "the word Aryan meant one who is spiritually awake" and that the Zoroastrian religion taught the unity of life many centuries before Christ. It was not true that they worshippes the outer physical fire but the inner fire of the heart, spirit and life. Zoroastrianism taught that life cannot be produced from on-life - therefore it should be held sacred. The Christian commandment "Thou shalt not kill" was translated from Zoroastrian teachings.

"There is no conflict in nature" said Dr. Bode, "it is harmonious - and faithful at all times. Only when man comes along is there conflict. Good and evil are conditions within us-if we wish to be good we have the opportunity and no one makes us kill animals and men.

Referring to India he said the country was once totally vegetarian for religious reasons and many family's to-day trace their vegetarianism back 2,000 to 3,000 years. No meat-eaters are allowed to enter their homes, so strongly do they feel about the evil of flesh-eating. Indians are fortunate in having in Dr. Prasad, their President, a man who lives a simple life and is a strict vegetarian. Only under the influence of western "civilisation," Mohammedans, Arabs, during the last few hundred years have the traditional ideas been forsaken.

Buddha taught Ahimsa, the doctrine of non-hurting and saying that sorrow is the result of the desire in man creating causes for which he suffers. We must learn not to desire, not to exploit. Animals may need to be protected and fed but not killed.

In modern times Mahatma Gandhi has started the return of India to an appreciation of the sacredness of life, by example and teaching. If we can feel equally for each one, however low in the scale of consciousness, we shall turn the earth into a paradise.


heck, we should respect one another and I suppose that goes for animals too... though I reserve the right to kill a snake 'on sight' if it is invading my personal space. And, I try to NOT bring in all the world religions because -- they all tend to be two faced about the whole killing/murder thing -- telling their followers to respect all Life and then urging them to wipe out whole cultures to 'allow' their people to move in to prosper and grow. Genocide is genocide -- no matter the 'reason'.

ANYWAY... eat meat if you wish. Try to do it mindfully and with reverence for the life given to become part of your Being.
Eat nothing but veggies -- but know some day you too will be faced with charges of being 'inhuman' for ending the life cycle of a sentient being -- be it a carrot or egg plant... society does tend to go to such extremes before coming around to some modicum of common sense about such things.
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shea (shlomit) replied the topic: Re:Choices

"Shea, it doesn't seem like other animals care.

Nature doesn't really factor pain into the energy cycle. Lions will kill for their food. Do you think they have moral quandaries about it? Not really.

Why should humans, simply because we have the mental capacity to choose otherwise?"-

Because the last time i checked you are not a lion, you are a human being. You have intelligent and have means to ease the suffering and pain there already is on earth. And because of that it should be your obligation to know what you are doing.

..."Paper is dead without words
Ink idle without a poem
All the world dead without stories
Without love and disarming beauty

Careless realism costs souls"....(-Nightwish)
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Connor replied the topic: Re:Choices

Forgive me if I disagree.

I think we should definitely ease suffering and pain. But, I don't think it should be a responsibility just because we do have the mental faculties to do it.

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Stryse replied the topic: Re:Choices

Personally, I'd like to get another specie's perspective on it. Maybe a dolphin. I'd be not at all surprised to find out they were actually more intelligent than homo-sapiens. So it would be interesting to see how another sentient, sapient creature felt about this.

They clearly consume other animals for nourishment. True inter-species communication with them _is_ on the horizon, so perhaps that should be on the list for an information exchange.

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Connor replied the topic: Re:Choices

Agreed. It would be interesting to see!

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Red Angel replied the topic: Re:Choices

shea (shlomit) wrote: Because the last time i checked you are not a lion, you are a human being. You have intelligent and have means to ease the suffering and pain there already is on earth. And because of that it should be your obligation to know what you are doing.

Considering the rightness or wrogness of what you eat? Of course we must --- just as with any other decision we make?

But to insist that all humans aught to be vegans is both fallacious and dangerous. Not all humans are biologically capable of thriving on vegan resources (there's a lot of diversity there within the human species).

And if someone attempts to make an argument that a human should suffer self-detriment rather than consume in any way the life-force of other animals they need to keep in mind that even vegans must prey on other life-forms to survive. Why the sudden distinction between beings that have a face and those that don't? True --- arguments can be made that those who can thrive on vegan resources should do so ---- but those who can't shouldn't suffer self-detriment -- and need-not feel guilt about whatever non-vegan resources they need.

As for those who would deny the existence of humans who are incapable of thriving on vegan resources ---- I have nothing to say to those who insist on debating from a counterfactual position. Just because some people can do well on vegan resources does not mean everyone can.
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Anirac Morgan replied the topic: Choices

Well, the human species is omnivores so within reason our diet can be very varied. Personally I like eating meat, and I don't think I could at this point turn to a vegetarian diet plan. However one can be conscious and emptathic even as a meat eater. If we want to talk forefathers and indians, they had a very different relationship with nature in that they respected animals and the nature around them. Some meat producers ensure their animals live good and healthy lives, that they get to be happy. They mark their product so that consumers can know these animals weren't born and bred in cages, but lived freely. This goes for a lot of products, like egg and milk as well. And I do avoid chicken at all cost, lest there's a guarantee these were free-roaming chicken. Because I know that the chicken industry is one of the worst when it comes to abusive animal care, putting their animals in tiny cages and feeding them with steroids until they can hardly walk! It's as disrespectful as it is unkind.

So I guess I am in a sort of inbetween box. No, I do not feel bad about eating meat, because it's been the natural way of things since we were still cavemen and hunted mammuts. It's how nature made us, but the industry is as rotten as we made it, hence I definitely have opinions about how we should be mindful about where we get the meat from. And I am against hunting for hunting, like has been a Norwegian tradition. We hunt to keep "population down at a healthy level" and we have to resort to that because we kill off most our predators. Which I think is wrong! Wolves, bears, etc, they could have themselves kept the population at a healthy level and nature could have seen to its own balance. But because of sheep farmers, wolves get killed off to the point where apparently the acceptable number is between 10-20 wolves, and I am not even kidding about that number. I think it was last year where our government sent out teams that systematically killed off pups and female wolves to keep the population at "the accepted level". And I think that's far more horrible than people eating meat from cows that have been bred and taken care off to walk freely in the fields. At least they are from nature's side prey and the conscious farmer treats their livestock well while they're alive.

And if we had a healthy population of predators we wouldn't have to hunt deer and such for sport; nature would see to its own balance.

Qui-Gon Jinn: "There's always a bigger fish."
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David (Phoenix) replied the topic: Choices

Anirac Morgan wrote: However one can be conscious and emptathic even as a meat eater. If we want to talk forefathers and indians, they had a very different relationship with nature in that they respected animals and the nature around them.


I think that part is key, at least for me. There was a respect of nature and the animals we consumed. And I think now that we have guns that can kill of predators and that we kill for killing sake, that lack of respect has caused an upset in nature. Putting animals in cages, etc is not the answer. That all being said, ever since I learned about how our ancestors respected their kills, almost revered them, I at least try to thank my meat for its sacrifice before I eat it. And its not about it being a conscious thing, its more about trying to restore some of that natural balance. *shrugs* hahahah maybe it just to clear my conscious, but I love me my meat!!!
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Jax replied the topic: Choices

We all make choices. We can make the choice to minimize harm with what we eat, or we can choose to ignore it. However, ignoring really isn't the Jedi way. ;-)

This goes beyond whether or not to eat meat. This goes to where our food comes from, as the distance food travels changes the carbon footprint. Consider whether your food is harvested by people who are practically slaves vs people paid a living wage. Consider the living conditions of the animals you are consuming, as well as the way they are killed. I pay significantly more for certified humane chicken eggs. I gladly do it, even as our egg intake has increased a lot because I can't support the inhumane poultry farms in good conscience. There is plenty I consume that I know isn't the most benevolent choice to make, so I'm working on it. It's challenging. I think having respect and awareness for what we consume is a good start. But no, not everyone can go without eating meat. That's where I ask that you try to find humane sources of meat.
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Kai Sabu replied the topic: Choices

I don't believe that I'll ever be a vegan, but I have been trying to reduce my meat intake recently for both health and compassion reasons. I haven't been able to afford much free-range meat (once in a while), but we do go for the humanely-raised eggs, and I try to buy fair-trade coffee and such as much as possible.

As a tangent, I grew up in a hunting family. My people have been hunters on both sides of my family for as far back as anyone can tell-- deer, birds, rabbits, squirrels. And no one in our family ever hunted or fished just for sport. It was eaten, respectfully and gratefully. If you're not going to use it, we were always taught, you have no business killing it. And my dad still won't hunt with a rifle out of a tree stand because he believes it doesn't give the deer enough of a fair chance.

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