Compassion & Non Violence
Everything in the universe is connected and there is a spiritual interdependence and equality between all forms of life. Every atom, in the human body, in food, in rocks, plants, animals and even the atoms in man-made objects came from a star that exploded. We might not have the same bloodline, the same gender, religion, color, or even belong to the same species, but we all are made from the same material and are all piece of an amazing and vast Universe.
Since ‘you’ = ‘all other life forms’: treat everything and everyone as you would like to be treated. Trust in the law of causality. Take responsibility for your thoughts, words and actions and their consequences. Realize that the smallest of creatures have the same life force just like yours and the ability to feel pain. So think about your diet, does it involve pain or does it involve compassion? Think about the ethics behind your personal goals, whether it’s increasing your income or improving your looks. Think about the clothes you’re wearing, did animals had to die or (worse) suffer? Were people exploited during the production? How does it effect the environment, the air that I’m breathing in? Soften your heart, let go of attachments and practice compassion. Always do your best to not intentionally harm any other living being. Transitioning might be hard, especially because of conventional thinking and the status quo, but try not to let it get in your way. It is scientifically proven that we don’t need as much protein as the meat and dairy industry made us believe. A whole food plant based diet prevents many Western diseases like diabetes, cancer, obesity, heart disease etc. and provides plenty of protein for the human needs.
Jainism (an Indian religion) prescribes a path of ‘Ahimsa’, which means non-violence towards all living beings. What makes it even more interesting is that Ahimsa is not only applied to physical acts, but also to words and thoughts. We naturally get mad, furious and upset when faced with injustice. We might even want to take violent counteraction. There is so much suffering and injustice in the world, but the only way to overcome it, is to not contribute to it in the same way. Not in actions and not even in thoughts and words. The Dalai Lama said: “You must not hate those who do wrong or harmful things; but with compassion, you must do what you can to stop them — for they are harming themselves, as well as those who suffer from their actions.”
I personally believe humankind has the intelligence and compassion to overcome greed, sexism, racism and speciesism and by doing so fix the challenges societies and our planet are facing. Don’t think one person won’t make any difference. Start doing what YOU can do, and inspire others to do the same. The world might not get a better place overnight, but YOUR world most probably will, and that my friends, is a small step towards greatness.
With Love from the Happy Earth Kitchen