So surprising how many inspiring people are or were vegan. Definitely a unique path or combination of events that leads to Veganism for most. An estimated 10% of those who have the choice have made it; which is definitely not a majority; especially in the western world. Mark Twain a writer “Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it’s time to pause and reflect”. As a philosophy built around the idealism of “Do not harm”; its a choice that truly goes beyond diet; even beyond lifestyle & fashion. Jodi Foster an actress “Cruelty might be very human, and it might be cultural, but it is not acceptable.” Sustainability is becoming more and more important; as civilization comes to terms with the finite limitations of resources on planet earth; most vegans already understand how combined actions have a lasting impact. Morrisey musical artist “You either approve of violence or you don’t, and nothing on earth is more violent or extreme than the meat industry”. What inspires this choice? Why do people decide to break away from conventional behavior? How does this decision effect diet, connections and every day life?
All cultures are built on epic stories. Most vegans have situations that pressure them to change; minds that expect them to do better; or physical aversions. Angela Davis, who is considered the “Godmother of modern Veganism” by many; is a socialist scholar as well as a human rights and progressive justice advocate dating back to the 1960’s; also top 10 on the FBIs most wanted list. After dealing with her own personal struggles and seeing the struggles of others; she was able to make the connection between human rights & animal rights; as well as understanding the repercussions of relying on animal products. Chris Hedges a journalist “Becoming vegan is the most important and direct change we can immediately make to save the planet and its species”. For those of this world; even those not; these are challenging times for so many reasons. It is very clear where the problems are coming from and who is aware of them. Making the choice each day to avoid harmful practices is an action that clearly states its purpose; as well as an example for everyone. Gandi of India “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” The people who are making a difference; understand the depths of the worlds problems; it takes a next level person; to call out where society falls short; to try to find solutions to those problems. Although he was not vegan because it was very difficult at the time; Albert Enstein was vegetarian; “Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances of survival of life on Earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet.”. Once you know you know; it is very difficult to unlearn truth; once an idea replaces another as systemically relevant. Maya Angelou a poet & writer also knew this. “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” Another great thinker; pushing the boundaries of reality was Leonardo Da Vinci; “My body will not be a tomb for other creatures”. Even Hippocrates; “The soul is the same in all living creatures, although the body of each is different”. And Plato; “The Gods created certain kinds of beings to replenish our bodies; they are the trees, the plants, and the seeds”. Many Apple device users; do not know; that the founder Steve Jobs was also vegan. “The dairy industry tried for 20 years to convince you that milk was good for you. Its a lie… but they tried anyway.” Of course most vegans are not dealing with extreme experience; every day as a vegan can be freeing; and as complicated as the journey of preparation for it.
Each day the sun rises; there is time to experience reality; the next day, that experience is replaced by new experiences. Vegans do not usually go back to old habits. Spending the time to learn about how the world works. Shining a light on what choices that are made really mean. Beyond taste, preference, and the ignorance & denial of truths that many are not exposed to; or choose to ignore daily. This denial causes problems; most do not like being challenged with truth; sometimes can result in lack of respect or even negative reactions to a vegans very existence. This can make connecting with people more difficult; challenge the fundamental structure or reasons for friendships or relationships; even make getting jobs more difficult with non vegan employers. Vegans are not yet respected by many; are made fun of socially; even by some journalists as well as in numerous movies and television shows. This not only exposes how cruelly minorities are treated; it sets a precedent allowing for behaviors that are profitable; but also solidifies a sentiment of cultural relevance. Dinner with relatives, friends or significant others can be awkward. Even social media can be a completely different world for vegans; just expressing feelings, experiences or gain feedback of any kind; can become a political issue. Some are even taunted by “carnies” posting meat to comments or under the guise being vegan in the case of World Vegan Day November 1, 2021; which is not considered harassment yet. Eating meat is viewed as a masculine behavior; commercials use sex appeal to sell animal products; hiding the holocaust like conditions of factory farms. Many corporations, restaurants & law makers; ignore vegans completely; or only offer a few options or solutions. Vegan communities on social media are much more accepting usually then local communities where vegans are few and far between. As many vegans are also part of other minority groups as well; experiencing negativity for a multitude of reasons; from people who do not understand usually due to personal insecurities. Sometimes from within the vegan community or even those minority groups as well. This is barely scratching the surface; of the complexity that many vegans are dealing with sometimes on a daily basis; which is why all vegans are inspirational.