Is AllAboutFasting Pro-Meat or Vegan?

from Anonymous

"Why the propaganda against meat though? Some sorts are unhealthy, but not all. Don't push your vegan agenda here. Add recipes with meat." 

  ~Anonymous Reader

"Why would you promote eating meat? Don't you know how bad it is for your health?"

~Anonymous Reader

Response from AllAboutFasting:

Believe it or not, I received these two emails within a week of each other. I had to laugh. But then it made me sad. How quickly we stereotype each other and then push against someone who appears to have opinions and ideas different than our own.

The divisiveness in this country (U.S.) seems to have hit a new peak. The assumptions and generalizations expressed in these two emails seem to reflect those that are made on much larger stages and venues. But the truth is, life isn't black or white. We forget there IS a middle.

Let me set the record straight: NEVER do I tell anyone else how to eat. What I promote over and over again here on this site, is that people feel into their own bodies, watch their reactions to different foods, feel the quiet urges to try something different, forget how you THINK you should eat and FEEL for what to eat, open a dialogue with your own body, and honor its messages. Forget what "beliefs" you might hold about food -- that's just your mind dictating to you. Open to your heart, to your inner world, and listen for those messages. This is what fasting is about.

There are a few recipes on this site, and they are mostly vegetarian (I sure wouldn't call them vegan!). This is because meat recipes abound elsewhere. My aim was to highlight new and different foods; it being a common occurrence that after fasting a person is drawn toward different foods. And always more wholesome, natural foods. Foods that actually grow on this Earth, out of the ground, provided by Nature herself. For me, I was drawn to millet at one time and struggled with how to make it palatable! That page, Millet Recipes, has become a hit with others, even non-fasting individuals, who are struggling with the peculiarities of millet.

Yes I do eat meat, but not very much. For me, it's a grounding issue; I'm more grounded and present when I have meat in my diet. Most days though I eat vegetarian. But let's dispense with the labels; I eat a varied diet. I don't confine myself with rigid rules, though I do aim for the highest quality of anything I eat. The meat is grassfed, antibiotic-free and raised locally. The veggies are non-GMO, sometimes organic, sometimes not. (See the Environmental Working Group's guidelines for which produce is safest to consume non-organic.)

I stay away from pasta, as much as I love it, because it always leaves me feeling bloated and un-nourished afterwards, and tired the next day. Though on rare occasion I will order it in a restaurant and am always reminded afterward why I should stay away from it.

And since I have a local source, I drink RAW milk, more as a meal or snack than as a beverage because it's so filling. And from raw milk, I've learned to make a variety of dairy products.

You get the idea...

Perhaps it is confusing where I stand on this issue when one only reads a page or two of this site. Hopefully I've clarified things. For me, it's not about sticking to a particular regimen of eating; I personally don't care to box myself under a certain label and then try to adhere to someone else's rules for that box. It's about choosing well on a daily basis, avoiding processed foods and restaurants (as much as possible and still have a social life :-))

I don't think how anyone eats should become a political issue. As we all know, we are each unique in our physiology. And any rational health-conscious person will learn, over time, the foods that most nourish them and the foods that do not. Once you've learned that, just follow what you now know, staying open to new inspiration and guidance, feeling for those messages from within. Perhaps using occasional fasting to help clarify these messages. And don't let anyone put you on the defensive as to the choices you make.

On the spiritual ramifications of eating meat

Wait! What? There's spiritual ramifications of eating meat? Yes, there's spiritual ramifications to everything we do, right? But in this case, it isn't likely to be what you're thinking.

I've been back and forth and all around the issue of eating meat vs. not eating meat for over 40 years now, both in my personal life and in watching those around me play with different diets. As a generalization, eating meat appears to be more physically grounding whereas not eating meat tends to lead to a lightness of spirit.

This equates to a downward movement and an upward movement -- both are movements of spirit actually. And both are necessary, but perhaps at different times of life, or for different personalities, or those in different cultures.

Again, as a generalization, what I've seen is that eliminating meat from the diet has the effect of raising one's spiritual awareness, whereas eating meat can help ground an individual who is experiencing a disconnect from physical reality.

For the culture of the United States, I would say the vast majority of us could do with less meat in our diets. This would help to counteract the powerful effects of the materialistic media and culture that surrounds us. It would help us to connect more inwardly, much like fasting does. But notice that I don't say we should eliminate meat entirely. How much meat one consumes is a personal determination to be made based on a person's daily life circumstances. Perhaps total elimination is called for, perhaps just a lessening of quantity to a handful of times per week.

No matter how often we decide to eat meat, let's always remember to thank the animal for the gift of its flesh that nourishes us. Gratitude always.

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