Tag Archives: vegetarianism

710zmyvR8PL._US230_ In the 90s, I used to use John Robbins’ book, Diet for a New America, along with the PBS special that went along with it, in my classroom. I loved his heart centered presentation of the benefits of a plant-based diet, at a time when the word “vegetarian“ was still far from being accepted as a normal, not to mention better, alternative, for the animals, the environment, and us.

Last month, more than 25 years after his book came out, I had the pleasure of interviewing this man for Awaken.com. Here is an excerpt of the written transcription. Follow the link below, to watch the first part, on Skype:

In all the Baskin/Robbins stores, there used to be large photographs on the back wall. Brown and White of Guernsey and Holstein dairy cows grazing in beautiful Wisconsin pasture. They were gorgeous and they spoke of closeness to nature and you see these cows living a beautiful life. And as a kid, working in the stores, I thought those pictures were beautiful. I believed them. Surely, that is where the milk comes from, that makes the ice cream that we are selling and manufacturing… And then, one day I went to a farm with my dad where we bought a lot of our dairy products. It was nothing like the pictures. Nothing. First of all, there was no grass anywhere. Second of all, the cows are all in confinement. They are basically imprisoned and they have very little space. And they are standing knee deep in their own manure. And they are feeding out of a trough, and I go towards the trough.

Im a kid now, probably 13 or 14 years old, and I walk towards the cow with love in my heart. Im a boy. And Im hoping, I suppose, to pet the cow. Or at least look into its eyes. I just want to make contact. And I approach slowly, and as I approach, the cow gets really frightened and agitated. And Im thinking, cows are placid creatures. What has that cow endured, that it is frightened when a small boy approaches it? What has it endured? Whats been done to it? And I investigated that. And I found out how these animals were treated and it was so opposite to the images portrayed in those pictures. And that type of green-washing or humane washing continues to this day.


Why Are the Yogis Vegetarian?

Q: Why Are Yogis Vegetarian?

The practical Reasons:
1. Because of the unnecessary suffering of our animal friends, all to support an unnecessary habit. Ahimsa, or nonviolence, is part of the Yogi’s vows!
2. To protect the environment (“the industry” consumes enough grain to end world hunger, is the leading cause of deforestation and “run-off” pollution).
3. For better digestion (Biologically, we have the features of an herbivore, including the intestines, teeth, pH balance and cooling system—we sweat through our skin (and we lack the claws of a carnivore!).
4. For better over-all health (“The protein myth” makes us think we need meat to get enough protein. The truth is, most Americans consume too much of it, which is hard on the kidneys. Meat also contributes to an unhealthy, acidic internal environment).

The Etheric Reasons:
1. Meat is, in the most literal sense…dead. Eating it contributes to what one of my spiritual teachers calls “two-dimensional thinking”—it limits our powers of perception and keeps us dull.
2. The food at the top of the food chain is nourished directly by the Sun, endowing it with the greatest life promoting properties. The higher vibrational quality of plant-based food provides our subtle body with more Prana, or, life force.
3. The Yogi seeks complete spiritual awareness and a meditative state of consciousness—the lightness and purity of a plant-based diet facilitates this state of being.
4. The slow-to-digest flesh food is considered an obstruction to the sensitivity and connective capacity of our body—our instrument. The most evident of these qualities is our intuition, which requires our internal clarity. Like a stereo system with internal corrosion, its power as both a receiver and transmitter will be compromised.

The Yogi is concerned with the subtle effect that food has on his mind and astral body. One who seriously takes to the path of Yoga would avoid ingesting meats, fish, eggs, coffee, alcohol and drugs. ~Sivananda

Why Are the Yogis So Advanced?
Due to a historical glitch, by way of the ice age, the western part of the world was once forced to hunt for food. But, while our vegetarian ancestors fell into a carnivorous lifestyle, the Yogis maintained their vegetarian way of life.

Because of the orientation of the mountain regions surrounding India, this subcontinent, long a mystic eden, and dwelling of the most spiritually advanced, was spared from the big freeze. Thus, wandering Yogis maintained the plant-based diet that kept their bodies and spirits light, clean, pure and full of life-giving prana. This enabled them to maintain their meditative states of consciousness and Yogic way of life.

To the lightness of being!