Being peace to bring peace.
I have not always been a vegan, even though I had known about the cruelty involved in the factory farming system for 20 years or so. For a while I was what I would call a pseudo-vegetarian. I was mostly vegetarian, but I still ate fish. I wasn’t committed to vegetarianism, because I believed that one person couldn’t make a difference. I even started reintroducing meat into my diet, just because it was easier. I told the world that I was an animal lover, but I still ate them, and in so doing, I caused them suffering.
Then I changed.
It wasn’t that I learned something that I didn’t know before, it was that I felt something I hadn’t felt before. I felt the animals’ pain – not physically, but emotionally. In fact, I had felt it before, but I had covered it up, squashed it down, pretended it didn’t exist. I pretended that there was no connection between me and all the animals, who were suffering so that I could eat.
Dr Wayne Dyer wrote a book called “There’s a Spiritual Solution To Every Problem”. But I would go further and say that there is a spiritual answer to every question, and that answer is love.
I began to change when I realised that we are all one, all of the people, all of the animals, all of the plants – everything on this planet and beyond, and even the planet itself. We are all part of God, and we are connected by God’s love. I didn’t just know this; I felt this. I felt the connection to all of life, and I knew from that moment on, that I could never again eat another sentient being, and I certainly couldn’t knowingly allow one to suffer so that I may eat.
I had to start to walk my talk. I had to set an example that I would wish others to follow. All of us are an example to someone – our children, our siblings, our partners, our co-workers. If we want the world to change, we need to embrace the words of Mahatma Gandhi and “be the change we wish to see in the world”. If we want to live in a peaceful world, we need to bring peace into all aspects of our own lives first. For me, there is no peace in causing suffering to another being; there is certainly no peace in eating those who have suffered.
I believe that as the world begins to fully embrace the concept of “We Are One”, more and more people will implement a vegan lifestyle.
In the meantime, for some, peace might come by paying a little extra and buying free-range, or perhaps by giving thanks for the animals who have given of their lives so that we might eat.
What do you think of this way of bringing peace into our own lives first?
Are there other ways that you think we can start to be peace now?