Meat, Veggies, Water, Sentience, & Perplexities

At certain times in my life, I tried following a vegetarian lifestyle. But, each time, no matter how careful I was, I couldn’t do it. I lost way too much weight the first and I was already very skinny; and I got sick a lot. The second time, I really got sick a lot. A few years ago, I suggested the idea to a naturopath I saw thinking that she would encourage me and have some suggestions for how to do it correctly. But, she said, “Nope. You have to eat meat. Your physiology is different. You’ll get too sick, if you don’t eat meat.” Interesting that I knew this all along. But it’s too bad in many ways. It is ecologically more sensible to eat only vegetables, especially if you grow them yourself or buy locally grown vegetables. You’ll get more energy-bang-for-the-buck.

However, this got me thinking about a number of things that keep getting posted on Facebook and elsewhere on the internet. The general dogma is that meat is bad and vegetables are good, because animals are sentient and plants are not. Well, that dogma seems to be threatened by increasing evidence that plants may have a lot more going on than we previously thought. Here are a few of many links (investigate some on your own):

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-green-mind/201412/are-plants-entering-the-realm-the-sentient

Research Shows Plants Are Sentient. Will We Act Accordingly?

http://letthemeatmeat.com/post/79193241820/what-would-plant-sentience-mean-for-vegan-ethics

So, if plants are able to think and plan; are aware of their surroundings, including other plants and animals; can solve problems, care for others; and so forth; the argument about sentience may no longer hold true. Hmmm… We may need to rethink our positions from a high moral horse. We may have to consider that all living things are here together. We may need to think about how we can eat another sentient being with sensitivity and appreciation for their sacrifice, rather than as some sort of disconnected right. We may have to realize that we are part of a larger set of relationships where no single type of being is better than any other. Oooh, what a crushing blow….

But, I also came across postings from PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) and all I’ve got to say is BEWARE. They aren’t who you think they are (and neither is the ASPCA). Check out a few of many links:

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/lucy-uprichard/the-many-failings-of-peta_b_2945870.html

Home

http://www.dailylife.com.au/news-and-views/dl-opinion/the-problem-with-peta-20120725-22ouo.html

10 Insane Facts About PETA

As for me, I’m trying to thank the plants and animals for their sacrifices and I’m trying to spend some time trying to imagine what it would be like to be a plant or some other animal. But, I’m also spending time appreciating my dog and my two cats. They are teaching me a lot about relationships and being present.

About Jeff Bloom

I'm a Researcher with and am on the Advisory Board of the International Bateson Institute and am a professor emeritus with the Department of Teaching & Learning, College of Education, Northern Arizona University.
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