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Author Topic: Food: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?  (Read 2043 times)

Hariti

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #15 on: November 15, 2018, 11:21:54 pm »
Why do you believe your biology: isn't also unusual?

Because I accept the theory of evolution through heredity and descent with modification? Individual people don't, with the exception of rare medical disorders, have different biological needs from those of the rest of their family or ancestral community.

I don't come from an ancestral population of vegetarians. If I did, I would readily accept that my biology has tailored me toward eating an all-vegetable diet, but my ancestors were primarily European omnivores who ate large quantities of meat and vegetables.

My vegetarianism is a choice I made despite my biology being oriented toward meat eating, not something that was enabled by biological adaptation within my community. This is contrasted with the Inuit's all-meat diet which was forced upon them by the enviromental conditions in which they live, and which was made more efficient over many generations through biological adaptations.

The Inuit didn't choose to eat all-meat diets (unless you count the fact they live in the Artic as a "choice"), they had to eat them, and their biology adjusted over time as a result of selective pressures.
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

Darkhawk

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #16 on: November 16, 2018, 01:51:33 pm »
I'm one of those people who looks at food from a chemical point of view, and I see it as a means to an end (that end being, namely, surviving and getting through the day), rather than something special.

I don't see a difference between eating 10g of dairy protein, 10g of soy protein, or 10g of meat protein. It has the same effect, biologically speaking, and experientially speaking, I've never notices a qualitative difference.

If you look at it as purely chemical, why do you not consider the fact that there are different chemicals involved, and in different proportions?  That makes absolutely no sense.  If they were the same substance they would be actually the same substance.

If you're going at wild-ass speculation superficially based on science here, it's at least worth noting that the amino acid distributions are different in animal-derived foods and plant-derived foods just to start with, so obviously there are basic chemical differences in those ten grams of protein.

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I believe that is probably 100% true for you, but I would hazard to guess that the reason you feel that way is not biological, but rather psychological, emotional, and cultural in nature. Your body doesn't require meat to function, unless you have some fringe nutritional disorder; rather, it is you as a person who needs meat, because there's some aspect of eating it that you find necessary for your enjoyment of life.

If you think I am wrong, I would be curious to hear what biological factor you think is causing you to require meat.

So you believe I am lying to you about my experiences, and yet you want to interrogate me further?

How the fuck would I know?  I'm not a biologist or a specialist in the subject.  I just live in this body and have actually paid some attention to things like "if I eat too much potato I get the shits", "a pasta lunch just makes me ravenously hungry and cranky about it an hour later", "I can't sleep without sufficient fats in my system, which is why I got affectionately teased about having bedtime milk while I was on retreat," and "my borderline suicidal ideation with cognitive impairment is reliably cured by an application of beef".

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OTOH, if you find yourself agreeing with me, I would be curios to hear what it is that you think makes you need to eat meat to be happy and healthy?

I don't like being horribly depressed, cognitively crippled, and passively and dissociatively wondering if being dead would be much less effort.

Christ on a cracker with cream cheese and chives.

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Of course, if you don't want me to pry, I won't pry! I am merely curious because so many people seem to have trouble with a vegetarian diet, and yet I personally find it to be much easier than other lifestyle changes that I have made or attempted to make in my life.

Why is "some people's bodies work differently than yours" so wildly implausible to you, especially given the evidence of several billion people with different physical requirements and aptitudes?  In a world with allergies, lactose intolerance, celiac disease, fucked up tooth development when partiular populations stopped eating so much fish, regional food differences, traditional preparation variants, populations adapted to nomadic and sedentary foodways, and so on, why is this one variation so implausible to you?  There are even well-known crackpot theories about blood type diets that suggest that only people with A bloodtype can actually handle strict vegetarianism (and people with O bloodtype absolutely cannot).

Meh.  All of which reminds me I need to take my B12 pill since I have a clinically diagnosed deficiency.  There, blame it all on the B12 if you want a pat answer, which (in vegetarian sources) is apparently only found in bioavailable forms in nori and tempeh.  ~*~SCIENCE~*~
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Hariti

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #17 on: November 16, 2018, 02:49:56 pm »
Because I accept the theory of evolution through heredity and descent with modification?

Re-reading this comment today, I realize it sounds rather rude. I am sorry about that! Too much time elseweb can make me act impolite on TC, and that's not fair to everyone else who is being civil.
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Hariti

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #18 on: November 16, 2018, 03:07:05 pm »
So you believe I am lying to you about my experiences, and yet you want to interrogate me further?

I did not accuse you of lying, Darkhawk, and I am sincerely sorry that's what I was doing.

I was merely speculating about whether or not your symptoms were actually the result of nutritional or other factors; in either case, they would still be real symptoms. They would still be able to make you miserable and wreck havoc on your life. Just because I'm questioning the explanation that you have given for your experience doesn't mean that I am denying that experience actually happened.

This is clearly an extremely personal topic for you, and one that is likely to result in hurt feelings if I pursue it any further, so I am going to let it drop. As I said before, if you don't want me to pry, I am not going to pry. Do as you will.

I did read the entirety of your post, but I don't think that responding to your statements about amino acids, B12, "allergies, lactose intolerance, celiac disease, fucked up tooth development when partiular populations stopped eating so much fish, regional food differences, traditional preparation variants, populations adapted to nomadic and sedentary foodways, and so on."

I do have responses to all of those things, and why I don't think any of them mean that you biologically need meat to survive, but I don't think that any source I could cite would change your mind, or that this discussion is going to remain civil if I stay involved with it.

That doesn't mean that I am swayed by your post, or that I agree with you; I just don't want to pursue a topic that is likely to get me into a heated, angry argument. It's better to live and let live than to die on this hill.

With respect, I'm going to step out of this discussion. I am sorry for any hurt feelings. Obviously, everyone else can continue to discuss as normal, but this type of thing isn't good for my emotional health.
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

Jenett

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #19 on: November 16, 2018, 04:28:08 pm »
So. I will keep on doing the things I'm doing, which involves a range of protein sources, in a mix. With the blessing of both my doctor and nutritionist, and calibration from actual bloodwork from what's going on in my biochemistry, as well as attentive self-observation.

So, talking about this thread with a couple of people, I had a realisation that is worth calling out explicitly.

None of the things I deal with that are specifically diet are particularly rare conditions - somewhere between 5% (anemia) and 40% (cholesterol issues), roughly in the US. Obviously, they vary across age and other factors (once you have one autoimmune condition, your body tends to want to collect others to give the first one friends, as it were.)

But several of my conditions - including two that heavily affect my food choices - hit women harder than men. (Science has not begun to catch up with trans medicine yet in this area, so bear with me.) One in eight women will be diagnosed with a thyroid disorder in their lifetime. It's diagnosed 5 to 8 times as often in women than men (and in general, women are more prone to autoimmune diseases.)

There are a lot of people who are not diagnosed as hypothyroid at all, who have symptoms and medical test results that other doctors would consider diagnostic. (Basically, ask anyone with hypothyroidism, and they will probably know half a dozen people who weren't diagnosed for multiple years. And no, we don't all know the same half-dozen people.)

Anemia among people who menstruate? 29% worldwide. I found varying stats for the US, but somewhere between 8% or so for white women, and around 25% or higher for black women (with other groupings in between.)

And of course, all of this depends on having access to health care and doctors who will actually diagnose you.

I had been reporting menstrual irregularities to doctors (of a serious 'having major impact on my life and ability to go to work' version) for nearly a decade before my current doctor went "I'm pretty sure we can fix that one." I had to argue to get a referral to the (newly trained) endocrinologist who diagnosed the thyroid issues. The delay in diagnosis on that one - I'd been having less obvious symptoms for 15 years before things went sharply downhill fast - lead to me losing my job and being out of work for a year. Precisely because of hypothyroid brainfog, complete exhaustion, and other symptoms.

In other words, the costs of these choices can be huge. And these are things with pretty direct biochemical science: we know which foods contain lots of iron. We know how much spinach we have to eat to equal the iron in how much red meat. (And in specific, the body absorbs heme iron (meat, etc.) better than non-heme iron (most plant sources), so it's not even a one to one comparison in terms of how much gets in your body. We know things like "Soy and brassicas have a thyroid suppressant chemical."

When someone asks people to change their food patterns - especially in ways that impact a significant proportion of people's health - it is placing a greater burden on them. It's a greater burden for cooking, for shopping, for food preparation often especially at times when they are already dealing with other symptoms. (And this is, still, for a lot of us, a burden that falls disproportionately on women.)

Sometimes that's worth doing. Sometimes we choose to take that on for reasons. Sometimes we decide that an ethical choice is worth being less fully able to use our bodies than we might be. And if you live in the US and have access to bloodwork and supermarkets and specific supplement options, and you don't have a collection of reasons that interlock that make it a lot more complicated, plenty of individuals can make that choice and be fine. (Lucky them!)

But when you press it on to people who are more likely to be women (or dealing with the relevant biology), then you're also putting a bigger burden on a specific group of people.

There is a long-standing subtle misogyny in the world that tells women that medically, it's okay if we're exhausted. It's okay if all of our time and energy goes to basic survival. It's okay that we can't think straight, or do as much as we want (at the same time we're being told we should be able to do it all - family, career, sports, volunteering.) That what our lived experience is doesn't matter. Even if it shows up on the bloodwork, it probably doesn't matter  unless it's really serious.

Saying "Most people are fine with non-animal sources for these things" is, for a lot of us out here, saying "Your contributions to the world don't matter. It's fine that you're too tired, too overwhelmed, too miserable to make them."

And I'm not okay with that on a religious level. At all.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2018, 04:31:07 pm by Jenett »
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Darkhawk

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #20 on: November 16, 2018, 05:52:00 pm »
And of course, all of this depends on having access to health care and doctors who will actually diagnose you.

Snipping most of the post because I'm not actually sure which bit of it reminded me of a thing, so take this as a "this reminded me of a thing!"

My cousin was diagnosed with dual Crohn's/celiac somewhere in her mid to late twenties, I think.  (It was a while ago.)  As a direct consequence of attempting to start up a vegetarian diet and having her health collapse.  She already couldn't have dairy, not having the luck of having the genetic background that grants lactose tolerance, so cutting meat out and going heavily into a diet that put a heavier load on her guts blew up within months.

Now, medical awareness of things like Crohn's has mostly developed since it killed our shared grandfather, but that's still rather a lot of life without acknowledging an illness, and it might not have been discovered if she hadn't tried making a major dietary change that happened to cause her a great deal of harm.

A lot of figuring this stuff out comes by accident or luck.  I had a doctor who ran a comprehensive blood panel on me just because he was thorough, and told me, "Wow, if you were in a hospital I'd have you on a drip for that B12 level." (I probably have a general issue with B vitamin uptake even with things that are technically bioavailable, too; I've had substantial health shifts come about from B vitamin megadoses.)  I figured out what red meat does for my system when I (without intent to do so, it just happened to be how the cooking went for a while) went a week and a half without having any and started having creepy, bloodsoaked nightmares on top of the developing brain fog, which cleared up when I went, "Uh, blood?  Maybe I'll... try having a steak and see if that fixes it?" and now I've learned to identify the fog before it gets that bad.

Plenty of people discover things about their systems by keeping detailed food logs, or by being in a circumstance where they don't have something it turns out they needed for optimal function.

There just isn't a lot of cultural or medical support for individualized nutrition, in my experience.  It's all "everyone should be on this diet" or "cut out this thing, it's bad" or "there's no reason you can't".  Butter is bad, only woops now margarine is bad!  Et cetera, et cetera, and so forth.  Here we go 'round the prickly pear at five o'clock in the morning.  Orthorexia for everyone!

And someone who hasn't stumbled into the Correct Medical Diagnosis for whatever it is they know about their body still knows that thing about their body, they live there.  Not listening to people about how their bodies work leads to them not having serious medical concerns addressed, reliably and consistently.

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And I'm not okay with that on a religious level. At all.

One of these days I'll actually write the thing about food policing as immoral according to my interp of Kemetic theology (it goes in the ka theology book) rather than just having shouty bits in grocery stores about food labelled "reduced guilt".  But today I have to make frosting for vegan cupcakes because my frosting recipe is easier to adapt than my casein-intolerant housemate's buttercream nonsense. ;)

Food is like religion; different ones work best for different people.  It's important to offer people what sustains them.
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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #21 on: November 16, 2018, 06:18:34 pm »
There just isn't a lot of cultural or medical support for individualized nutrition, in my experience.  It's all "everyone should be on this diet" or "cut out this thing, it's bad" or "there's no reason you can't".

So, here's an example of that.

I have stuff that means my health insurance likes it very much if I see a nutritionist a few times a year (right now that's about three: I do a round of blood work, doctor, and nutritionist every four months so we can do adjustments.) She works in an annex to my main doctor's office. I saw her yesterday, in fact.

I've seen nutritionists previously at two other sets of medical care places, and had nutritional-related counselling a couple of other times that was not an ongoing thing. (Doctors, for the record, get almost no nutritional education.)

This is the only place out of half a dozen nutritionists I've seen where she reliably has read my records, read any updates, and actually listened.

I went in for my first appointment with her (about 3 years ago) and expected it was going to be a waste of my time, and that she wouldn't get the interlocking stuff that makes food complicated. But I am a good hoop-jumper for medical care, so ok, hoop.

And instead, I said "Ok, I know these things, here's my challenges..." and she went "Ok, so looking at your bloodwork, and with what you told me, how about we pick three things to work on, and how do you feel about starting with these" and we went through an interative process (a mix of general 'more exercise would be good, can I problem solve with you, problem solving some specific food things, and a side of "So, which local grocery store do you shop at, here's a list of good easy prep-foods from that specific chain/store." that is extensive and includes advice on things like chocolate.) They were entirely reasonable suggestions that actually helped with things I wanted to improve.

I have, basically, found a rainbow sparkly unicorn hiding under a cabbage leaf. This is a way-too-rare experience.

Yesterday, for the record, I have gained weight because I got a CPAP machine 6 weeks ago, which means I am no longer burning a bunch of calories on oxygen starvation during the night (she did not comment on it, because that's a known thing.) On the other hand, I now have noticeably more energy (I am routinely moving twice as much casually at work as before I started on it, which is so weird), and I wanted to talk about adding in (slowly and carefully) an additional exercise thing beyond my current swimming and periodic walking.

And then we had our regular "ARGH lunch is hard" conversation, and we figured out some seasonal options that work for the winter, and talked about the benefits of InstantPots vs. slow cookers vs. doing something on the stove or in the oven. So, y'know, useful problem solving that actually helps.

Her basic approach is cooking when you can, some quick and easy options when you can't, and a particular method to evaluating frozen foods and other things like that was developed by a doctor at the practice. (For the curious and up for it, here's the approach)
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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #22 on: November 16, 2018, 06:44:21 pm »
Plenty of people discover things about their systems by keeping detailed food logs, or by being in a circumstance where they don't have something it turns out they needed for optimal function.

I should probably do this but I'm a terrible diarist no matter what I try to record. I don't get nightmares, but I do sometimes have kind of night terrors / monster in the closet paranoia. It didn't occur to me until now that it might be diet-related. Though I did finally figure out that my stomach pains were from bacteria, not acid reflux.

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It's all "everyone should be on this diet" or "cut out this thing, it's bad" or "there's no reason you can't". 

Anything more nuanced wouldn't fit in a Dr Oz segment.  >:( There are home decorating books about creating your own style, why aren't there nutrition books about developing your own diet?

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One of these days I'll actually write the thing about food policing as immoral according to my interp of Kemetic theology (it goes in the ka theology book) rather than just having shouty bits in grocery stores about food labelled "reduced guilt". 

I recall hearing a theory about North American culture, that the moral policing that used to be applied to (mostly women's) sexuality has been shifted to (mostly women's) food choices. I find this plausible. And I've always found the idea of "sinful" food deeply weird.

Hariti

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #23 on: November 16, 2018, 06:49:13 pm »
One of these days I'll actually write the thing about food policing as immoral according to my interp of Kemetic theology (it goes in the ka theology book) rather than just having shouty bits in grocery stores about food labelled "reduced guilt".  But today I have to make frosting for vegan cupcakes because my frosting recipe is easier to adapt than my casein-intolerant housemate's buttercream nonsense.

What you have to remember is that lots of people, myself included, beleive that morality is A) Objective and not contingent upon circumstances B) Universally applied to everyone and C) Dictated by a higher power.

For such people, there can be no exceptions; if something is evil, it is evil, regardless of why people are doing it. That's the way I view meat; I understand the killing of animals to be equal to the killing of human beings, and as such I cannot condone eating meat under any circumstances.

To use an extreme example, even literal starvation wouldn't justify killing an animal for food. It is morally better, in my understanding of the world, to let oneself perish than to kill another innocent being to save yourself.

I am not trying to marginalize women, or disabled people (I happen to have several major chronic medical problems myself!), or poor people. I am trying to save the lives of animals. I think that all people should try to minimize the suffering they inflict on others, rather than minimize thier own suffering. I know that's a hard pill for people to swallow, and that many people find it outright abhorrent, but it's what I truly beleive.

It's better to be a starved, diseased, selfless aescetic who is barely surviving, than to be comfortable and happy on the backs of the suffering of other living things.

The reason I am saying all this is because I want to make it clear that it's not a personal thing; I am not trying to attack you or Jennet. I am not trying to say that your disabilities and health problems aren't real, or that they don't matter. The lifestyle I promote isn't one that is particularly enjoyable or healthy.

I made an ass of myself with my other comments, I do realize that. I don't know why I was so aggressive and condescending. Regardless, it wasn't cool for me to shove my beliefs down your throat like that. Sorry.

Just because I am willing to eat a sub-optimal diet and live with the health consequences of doing so, out of moral conviction, doesn't meant that I should try to make everyone else do the same. I know that, and I am fully ashamed of my zealous and bombastic behavior.

Even my Gods, who promote vegetarianism, wouldn't be cool with trying to force it on people.
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

Hariti

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #24 on: November 16, 2018, 07:02:35 pm »
I recall hearing a theory about North American culture, that the moral policing that used to be applied to (mostly women's) sexuality has been shifted to (mostly women's) food choices. I find this plausible.

I personally find that very hard to believe. The idea of ethical vegetarianism goes back centuries, (millennia, actually) and has been practiced and promoted by men and women alike.

Ethical vegetarianism is about animals. Their suffering, their pain, their lives, their rights. It's not a conspiracy to keep women malnourished and weak.

Lots of men are vegetarian, including most Buddhist monks and almost half of the world's Hindus, and the entire Jain religion. In the west, there are lots of male vegans, and historical vegetarians include Ben Franklin (temporarily) and Socrates. Einstein advocated for vegetarianism, although he himself ate meat. Ghandi was a vegetarian for most of his life.

Chances are, if a person tells you that it's wrong to eat meat, they don't care what gender you are. They are doing it because they genuinely believe it's wrong for anyone to eat an animal.

There are a lot of women who are voluntarily committed to vegetarianism, as well as a lot of men, it's not a patriarchal movement or practice, any more than sexual abstinence or teetotalism, or environmentalism, or the straight edge movement is patriarchal.

People are individuals, and different individuals have different moral convictions. For many people, that includes not eating meat, because they sincerely think it is wrong for anyone to do so.

I know that there are "food police" who only target women; our society has a really bad double standard when it comes to gender, and sexual practices, health practices, and many other things are enforced more severely on women than on men. I would never deny that!

However, when you are talking about ethical vegetarians, they aren't really policing "food" because they frankly find it disgusting to view animals that way in the first place. They are promoting a different moral code than the one accepted by mainstream society, and are promoting it for both sexes. I've never met a Vegan, or Jain, or Buddhist or Hindu or other vegetarian, who said that men should eat meat and women shouldn't. I suspect that any such person would be quickly ostracized from any animal rights organization.
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #25 on: November 17, 2018, 06:20:00 pm »


What you have to remember is that lots of people, myself included, beleive that morality is A) Objective and not contingent upon circumstances B) Universally applied to everyone and C) Dictated by a higher power.

Ender, I'm with you this far....

For such people, there can be no exceptions; if something is evil, it is evil, regardless of why people are doing it. That's the way I view meat; I understand the killing of animals to be equal to the killing of human beings, and as such I cannot condone eating meat under any circumstances.

...but not this far. I do agree that morality is objective and ultimately embodied in the person of a Higher Power; I disagree with you about what that morality is and whom is ultimately in the driver's seat. No surprise, I'm sure. I'm willing to discuss further in the appropriate forum, but I do want to say that in my view the dividing line is imago deo.

Humans (and angels, fallen and otherwise, and I'm sure many other orders of beings) are created in the image of God and to enslave, oppress, or kill them is evil and murder. Including the unborn. Animals are not so created; while they should be cared for with proper stewardship (the righteous man regards the life of his animal) they can be seen as existing for the benefit of the children of God both as bearers of burdens and sources of food. In my opinion, of course.

But if your deities feel so strongly about the issue, I believe that they could have done more to make that clear...both in getting the information across and in sculpting circumstances so as to make it a blessing instead of a curse as Darkhawk and Jenett remind us that it is for so many.

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Hariti

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #26 on: November 17, 2018, 06:30:00 pm »
...but not this far. I do agree that morality is objective and ultimately embodied in the person of a Higher Power; I disagree with you about what that morality is and whom is ultimately in the driver's seat. No surprise, I'm sure. I'm willing to discuss further in the appropriate forum, but I do want to say that in my view the dividing line is imago deo.

Of course. I didn't mean to imply that everyone who thinks morality is objective agrees on what that morality is! That's clearly not the case if you look at different world religions, and their moral codes; there is a LOT of overlap, but there are some things that one religion says is evil while another religion says is fine or even good.
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

Hariti

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #27 on: November 17, 2018, 06:37:22 pm »
But if your deities feel so strongly about the issue, I believe that they could have done more to make that clear...both in getting the information across and in sculpting circumstances so as to make it a blessing instead of a curse as Darkhawk and Jenett remind us that it is for so many.

Vegetarianism does chafe under the problem of evil, doesn't it? Why should people have to choose between doing the right thing, according to vegeterians, and doing the healthy thing? What king of choice is that? It's unfair.

I personally have my own answers to that question, and it comes down to the fact that the material world is corrupt and imperfect. Quite often, good people get hurt and bad people prosper; that doesn't mean that the good people weren't good, or that the bad ones weren't bad. It just means that the world was not fair, is not fair, and will not be fair in the immediate future.

I do very much sympathize with anyone who has health problems, especially if those problems make it harder for them to make choices such as vegetarianism. People should be able to decide what they do based on their own values and conscience, not be put under pressure from outside forces.
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #28 on: November 17, 2018, 07:27:42 pm »
Vegetarianism does chafe under the problem of evil, doesn't it? Why should people have to choose between doing the right thing, according to vegeterians, and doing the healthy thing? What king of choice is that? It's unfair.
...
I do very much sympathize with anyone who has health problems, especially if those problems make it harder for them to make choices such as vegetarianism. People should be able to decide what they do based on their own values and conscience, not be put under pressure from outside forces.

Careful there. I'm sure Himmler and Eichmann would very much like for that to be the ultimate standard of judgment.

Sorry for invoking Godwin's...but what I'm getting at is that as long as we are imperfect beings there is going to be a tension. And I believe that, ultimately, that is a good thing. I've compared this world and this life to a process of "fractional distillation"...well, IMHO the Problem Of Evil is part of turning up the heat. It helps show what we ultimately are made of by the choices we make.
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Re: What Kind of a Vegetarian Are You?
« Reply #29 on: November 18, 2018, 01:29:11 am »
Careful there. I'm sure Himmler and Eichmann would very much like for that to be the ultimate standard of judgment.

I don't quite understand what you mean by that. Why would Nazis want people to be accountable for their actions regardless of their motives? That's what I am advocating for, for constant and universal application of moral standards upon all people, for all time. Men, women, young, old, straight, gay, able or disables, it doesn't matter. What is evil for a homeless man in the streets of Mumbai is evil for a billionaire in LA; what is evil for an active duty marine in Syria is evil for a housewife in Tennessee. It doesn't matte if your life is very hard, or very easy, you still have to behave according to the same moral guidelines. Don't steal, don't kill, don't rape, don't terrorize people, don't promote addictive substances without informing people what you are selling, etc.


Men like Himmler and Eichmann though that the end justified the means; in their mind, it was OK to kill millions of people to create a Utopian society for the German people.

I'm saying that it isn't. That the ends do not ever justify the means. No goal is noble enough to warrant doing evil to achieve it.

No, you do what's right, even if it kills you. There's never a justification for breaking moral laws, regardless of what economic, medical, social, or political motive you might have for doing so.


Perhaps you misunderstood my comment because I used the word "chafe?" I can see how that might lead you to think I am dismissing it as a hindrance, which was not my intention. Rather, I was just pointing out that I find it to be a rather large obstacle to vegetarianism and other strict codes of moral conduct.

If you promote vegeterianism, aesceticism, celibacy, or other such restrictions, people will throw the problem of evil at you

"Why should I be good if it hurts me? I don't benefit from being good, but I do from being evil. What gives?"

To which my response would be that what gives, is that the world is a crapsack hellhole, and that you should be good even if it hurts you because righteousness is it's own reward.
"The worshippers of the gods go to them; to the manes go the ancestor-worshippers; to the Deities who preside over the elements go their worshippers; My devotees come to Me." ... "Whichever devotee desires to adore whatever such Deity with faith, in all such votaries I make that particular faith unshakable. Endowed with that faith, a votary performs the worship of that particular deity and obtains the fruits thereof, these being granted by Me alone." - Sri Krishna

Tags: vegetarian diet 
 

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