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"Just be who you are, calm and clear and bright." - Richard Bach, Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah

“But I love animals!”

My first ebook project, Can-Do Vegan, has been a long time coming, and it’s still nowhere near ready to publish. Right now I have to focus on book projects that are actually going to make me some moolah! (The first-pass pages of Immaculate Heart arrived yesterday and are clamoring for my attention before the Ego Management editorial letter shows up next week; and there’s the first chapter of my new novel to write, and The Boy from Tomorrow to revise…)

Some of the ebook chapters started out as blog posts—like Are You Addicted to Cheese? and What is “extreme?”—but many are new writing. It’s only recently occurred to me that I should be blogging the new stuff!

So here’s the first chapter—the main section of the ebook answers the most common excuses and rationalizations I hear from people who are still eating animals.

* * *

When a meat eater talks about how much they “love” animals, perhaps they ought to say they have a particular affinity for dogs or cats.

If you love someone or something, you treat them as well (or better!) than you treat yourself. If you love someone, you don’t make them suffer in a cage before slaughtering and consuming them.

Here’s something else to consider: people in other parts of the world eat dog flesh the way we in the West consume pigs, cows, or chickens. How can you logically make a distinction between animals who are sacred and animals who are not?

Vegans believe that all sentient beings deserve to be happy and free. We want to treat pigs, cows, and chickens with just as much consideration and affection as we do house pets. (In general, vegans believe we shouldn’t “own” animals at all, but many people I know make an exception for rescue animals. They treat these dogs as family, not property.)

In vegan philosophy, each of these sentient beings has its own part to play in the great cosmic pageant. We humans don’t have an exclusive on the concept of a “life purpose”: each and every being wants to exist in a state of peace and harmony, to experience him- or herself moving through the world, to make full use of his or her senses to appreciate his or her environment. This is true of everything, every living thing. Lilies and daffodils don’t grow for our pleasure. Mosquitoes don’t exist to annoy us.

You may have noticed that I haven’t used the word “it” when talking about “non-human people.” When animals become people to you, you can see yourself as part of something much, much bigger than your own limited brain and ego. This shift takes some getting used to, but it’s so worth it—for the animals and for your own spiritual and physical health.

I have an awesome T-shirt I got from Herbivore Clothing Company. It says, “I love animals too much to eat them.”

 

1 Comment to “But I love animals!”

  1. Kate's Gravatar Kate
    September 24, 2015 at 12:24 am | Permalink

    I never understand why people think it’s ok to eat cows and pigs, but would never eat dogs. What’s the difference?! I’m not saying that I’m better than them because I still eat dairy, but I just find it bizarre.

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Hi! I'm Camille. I only write stories that could never ever happen in real life, though I do believe in real-life magic. If we were in the same room I'd fix you a cup of tea, but for now we'll have to settle for a virtual connection. I'm really glad you're here.