Category Archives: Vegan Food
For animal lovers, Xmas isn’t a time of celebration knowing the immense cruelty involved in feeding the insatiable appetites of the masses.
Whether through ignorance or not actually wanting to know the truth of factory farming, people continue to partake in eating animals that have never had a chance to walk on grass or for pigs, even have a chance to turn around on their concrete block their entire lives.
Just prior to giving birth, they are moved to a ‘nursery’ which would outrage every Australian mother. Pending mothers are confined in an even smaller area where their body is encircled by metal bars to even further limit their movement.
Mother pigs are provided with no bedding or straw to make a birthing ‘nest’, so she has no choice but to give birth to her piglets on a hard floor. Nurturing and interacting with her young is impossible as a cruel metal frame imprisons her.
She will watch on helplessly as her babies have their teeth clipped, their tails cut off, and are castrated without pain relief. Her young are removed
More people on the Sunshine Coast are signing up to our website vowing to live a truly animal-friendly life and our most recent supporter is stunning former Miss Indy participant, Damara Graham.
Having endured bullying at high school because of her veganism, Damara went on to become a successful sports model. Her mother has also become vegan since seeing Damara’s health and general wellbeing drastically improve through not eating animal products.
Damara protested on Friday 25th in Mooloolaba whilst in her bikini, covered in “blood” outside a major food outlet to draw attention to the suffering of animals leading up to the “festive season”. This protest follows many similar ones held throughout the world by PETA. This protest was televised on local TV news programs.
Welcome all my beautiful friends to my first ever personal blog!
Although I started Vegan Warriors a few years ago, it is only recently I have been able to really connect with so many like minded people because of my website and facebook. These two conduits of technology were made possible because of something that happened that taught me nothing in this precious world is random.
I held the first ever rally for animals on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia to express my deep disgust and anger over our country’s treatment of live animals being exported to Indonesia, Turkey and Saudi Arabia. For those of you that arent aware, these animals are treated as things to torture by slaughtermen who barbarically dissect them whilst they are fully conscious (footage available http://www.4corners.com.au). We had a turnout of about 20 people all up including a couple in their late 70s who had never attended a rally in their lives but told me how the footage made them so sick, they immediately stopped eating meat and came along and held banners to passing traffic. Another gentleman there on the day was an ex slaughterman…I will never forgot feeling my life was truly worthwhile whilst watching him wave his banner saying “Stop the Cruelty, Ban Live Export!” proudly. Sarah was another amazing person I met on that day. She was wearing a Sea Shepherd tshirt and brought her own large sign which screamed “Torture!”. Sarah has since become my friend and offered to built a website and facebook page for Vegan Warriors. She did this without any expectations from me. She then offered to do the same for the twin brothers Ray & Murray Chambers who run the Sunshine Coast Koala Wildlife Rescue Service – once again without expecting anything in return, apart from wanting to help animals. Saz as I affectionally call her, is a fellow vegan and has taught me that we are meant to be where we are at every second of every day.
I grew up in a small country town in the bush, with the main source of employment being the local aboittoir, where my father was a meat inspector. The air was always thick with the smell of fear and death. That smell stuck in the back of my throat throughout my childhood years and has never left me. My father insisted I eat the animals he helped slaughter, this was something I decided, whether I was going to be punished or beaten, was not going to happen. Many nights were spent alone at the dining room table, hours after everyone else had finished their meals and were enjoying relaxing in front of the tv. My mum would come and tell me quietly to drop the meat under the table for the dog, who was waiting patiently. This then released me from my father’s punishment and I was then sent straight to bed. Night after night, rebelling against what I knew was so morally wrong, my life felt lonely and miserable. But after school each day I would be uber excited to skip down to the chicken pen and sit and read my friends their stories whilst they pecked at me and sometimes sat in my lap quietly clucking away as I stroked their soft feathers.
I gave up my job in the music industry as a music publicist to some of Australia’s most successful rock bands to dedicate my life to giving our precious animals a voice. I have since rallied an army of stellar supporters including celebrities Heather Mills (Paul McCartney’s ex) and Nick Nichols, Editor at Large, National Geographic Magazine. Many others including rockstars, barristers, animal lawyers, solicitors, university lecturers also publicly support my work. (Pls see my list of supporters for full details).
I am the target of much harrassment and intimidation from members of the torture industries I campaign against as well as from some in the vegan community. This is something that does, at times, get under my skin, but when I rest my head each night, I know nothing anyone says to or about me, will stop me screaming from the rooftops at and about the torturers.
It is a long dark journey as you all know, but if not for us, then who? We are the brave few who dare to be deemed “different”, “difficult”, “opinionated” and who make those who choose to own their share in torturing animals, extremely guilt and uncomfortable, no matter what their excuses.
Please see the media section of the website to see some of the past and current campaigning Im undertaking and with my new found supporters such as yourself, I feel even more energised and buoyed to keep making the lives of people who end the lives of our beautiful, precious animal friends, an absolute pain in the arse!
…9/11 – Close to 3000 human beings were killed. 9/11 – It’s happening right now in slaughterhouses all over the world. Every second close to 3000 non-human beings are killed. To these animals every non-vegan is a terrorist. Think about it.
For the Animals
Peace On Our Plates
Mindful eating for personal and planetary growth
This article appeared in The Edge: Exploring the Evolution of Consciousness, July, 2004 edition.
As we seek to raise consciousness in the world and within ourselves, we find that we are continually questioning the cultural programs that surround us. This questioning leads us all on the journey of creating a new, more compassionate and peaceful culture—one that operates out of love instead of fear.
As we travel along this path, it seems that almost daily we stumble across yet another assumption that we must shed if we are to grow in love. One of the most powerful assumptions that human beings have been conditioned to believe, the one that creates the most violence, bloodshed, and fear in terms of sheer numbers, both on the material and spiritual planes, is the belief that we must eat our fellow creatures in order to survive.
The immeasurable violence against animals brings death to people and the environment as well as to the animals themselves. This violence is also far reaching in its effects on our spiritual lives and the spirit of life itself. We know that the thoughts and feelings of all beings are powerful forces. All life is sacred and interconnected, and so the suffering of one becomes the suffering of all.
Factory farm employees, slaughterhouse workers, and fishermen pay a huge spiritual price to bring death to so many tables. They live covered in blood and excrement and daily carry the heavy burden of weapons of torture and death. To endure this agony, they must deny their natural sense of the sacredness of life. It is a great loss of spirit, and many lose themselves in domestic violence, drugs, and crime.
I often show videos on public sidewalks of animal suffering. Many people are shocked to learn of the hellish lives and deaths of today’s farmed animals. One night a man stopped and began watching undercover footage of slaughterhouses, a video entitled “Meet Your Meat,” narrated by Alec Baldwin. The gentleman spoke to the other people watching the video: “It’s worse than that,” he said, “way worse.” “How do you know that?” someone asked. He proceeded to explain that he had worked at the IBP slaughterhouse in Emporia, Kansas, for 4 years. During that time, he said that he and the others tortured the animals for fun and laughed at their agony as they were conveyed hanging upside down by one leg, fully conscious, being cut, jabbed, electrically prodded, dismembered, and worse. However, he explained with much emotion, one day he had a revelation. It dawned on him that these cows that they were torturing and killing were God’s creatures. He suddenly saw clearly that each cow was a special individual who was suffering terribly. He realized in that moment that he did not have the right to take their lives. He saw who they really were, and with that realization, he quit his job and stopped eating all foods made from animals. Now he, like so many others, can look into the eyes of animals and acknowledge our kinship and our spiritual bond.
When we eat the dead bodies of our animal relatives, on both a biological and spiritual level::
- We eat their terror and consequent adrenaline:
- We eat their physical illnesses from being fed chemicals, growth hormones, and feed containing dead animals;
- We eat their mental anguish from being incarcerated and separated from their families and their natural state of being;
- We eat the spiritual and mental numbing of the workers who torture and kill them;
- We eat the terrible loss to the animals of never having been able to praise and celebrate life, to see the sun, to nurture their children, and to run and play with their friends. .
Thich Nhat Hanh says that, without compassion, we cannot relate to all living beings, and that mindful eating brings compassion into our hearts. He adds, “And eating the flesh of our own son is what is going on in the world, because we do not
practice mindful eating.” A pure vegetarian, i.e., vegan diet is the very essence of mindful eating.
When we stop eating our kin (“our own son”), we reverse these sufferings and transform our lives into expressions of gentleness and compassion. When we stop eating their death and suffering, we stop devouring the future of our grandchildren and their grandchildren. When we stop eating these innocents who cannot defend themselves from humanity’s greed, we stop devouring the earth and the starving children. When we perform the sacred ritual of mindful vegan consumption, we take communion with God, the One Source.
Once we stay the hands of the slaughterers covered in blood and say, “Do not kill for me,” then it becomes possible to truly see with our sacred eyes the truth of our kinship with all life. We can look all beings in the eyes ourselves and say: “You are my friends,” and as George Bernard Shaw said, “I don’t eat my friends.”
Sitting at a lunch table at a conference one day, I met a man who told me he had adopted a pure vegetarian diet, not to help animals, but rather to lose weight. He had lost over 100 pounds and regained his health, but he told me that the most amazing benefit he had received was something else. Over the months of this new diet, he began to notice that he was feeling sentiments of compassion, sympathy, and love that he had never consciously felt before. Emotions, that he had considered undignified for the tough guy he thought himself to be, began to well up and bring tears to his eyes. Eventually, he made the connection and realized that it was his compassionate diet that was transforming his spiritual life without him even intending for that to happen. Tears welled up in my own eyes as I listened to his story, for I was seeing before me the hope of the world, the newly born Homo Ahimsa, (”Ahimsa” is a Sanskrit word for harmlessness) his heart broken open and love pouring in.
We have a step in faith to take, perhaps the biggest step yet. It is to move completely out from under the cloud of the anthropocentric mindset that declares that all that is not human is “property” or “resources.” This is the same mindset that considered women and children and people of color the property of certain men less than 100 years ago in some areas and continues to do so in other areas of the world. This is the same mindset that today justifies war, sweat shops, ecocide, genocide, and the killing of billions of defenseless animals for the benefit of a few groups of human beings.
All the various cosmic visions of the peaceable kingdom contain the wisdom that our actions and our spirituality must be guided by their effect on all sacred life, not just human life. We cannot objectify and commodify the animals any longer if we are to complete our transition out of the anthropocentric, globally destructive world-view that has dominated earth for so long, and enter into the new era of peace.
It is a beautiful and wondrous grace to be living in an era when so many people understand this. As we bear witness to some of the worst atrocities ever perpetrated by human beings on the planet, we are also witnessing the magnificent transformation of many human creatures into beings of transcendent compassion, mercy, gratitude and love.
May we all sit in grace at the table of peace and rejoice at every opening of every heart to the new era of Homo Ahimsa and the peaceable kingdom.
In the tradition of mystical activism, I ask you to bear witness with me to these facts and consider the suffering that the paradigm of domination is now causing both in the physical and in the spiritual lives of human beings, the earth, and the animals.
- Forty eight billion farmed land animals—eight times the human population of the world–are killed for food each year worldwide. That enormous figure does not include the horses, dogs, cats, and wild animals killed for food, nor the uncounted millions of male chicks ground up while still alive because they have no monetary value. Eighty nine million tons of fish, which would represent billions of uncounted individuals, are also killed each year. Fully one third of those residents of the sea are killed and tossed away as trash.
- U.S. factory farms produce 2.7 trillion pounds of manure per year which causes more water pollution than any other industry in the U.S.
- It takes 2,500 gallons of water to produce one pound of meat, whereas a pound of wheat only requires 25 gallons.
- One acre of land can grow 20,000 pounds of potatoes or 165 pounds of cow meat.
- 125,000 square miles of rainforest are destroyed each year to raise cows.
- Dairy cows are cruelly confined in factory dairies. They cry and mourn when their babies are taken from them at birth. The male babes are chained in tiny stalls, and slaughtered for veal at 6 to 8 weeks of age.
- Pigs and chickens on factory farms are confined in dark, poorly ventilated buildings, many in cages so small they cannot move or lie down comfortably. Many of them are ill with untreated tumors and diseases at slaughter due to the abominable living conditions.
- Slaughterhouses are notorious for inflicting unbearable torture on the animals they slowly kill and dismember.
- While “developed” countries dine on the flesh of their animal kin and overeat to the point of obesity, 40,000 children die every day for lack of food. Most of the grain they could eat is fed to farmed animals.
- It is estimated that one vegan potentially releases enough grain, water, and land to feed 20 starving people, and that one vegan will save the lives of at least 100 animals each and every year of his or her life.
- The consumption of animal products is a leading cause of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and many other illnesses that plague people who eat them. This is because the human body is not designed to be a predator (e.g. no ripping fangs or claws) or to digest dead animal tissue (e.g. lack of necessary digestive capability).
© Judy Carman, 2004
Judy Carman, M.A. is an activist for animal rights, peace and justice, and environmental protection. She is the author of Born to Be Blessed: Seven Keys to Joyful Living, and her new book Peace to All Beings won the Spirituality and Health award as one of the best spiritual books of 2003. She is co-founder of Animal Outreach of Kansas and of the Universal Prayer Circle for Animals.
A well deserved nomination. Well Done Jaylene 🙂
Although the job is never over, every little bit of progress counts and saves many more animals from the suffering they would have otherwise endured.