Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Vegan or Vegetarian

I couldn't resist posting this. This is hilarious. It's from the Catholic Answers forums. Hee hee!!!!

October 5, 2004TOPICS: Discuss
Index Prior issue Next issue Sign up
Dear Friend of Catholic Answers:I warned you last week that this would be a pre-recorded installment of the E-Letter. As you read this I am on the Catholic Answers cruise; the itinerary says we should be at Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, today.I suppose I could have figured out how to compose a fresh E-Letter while on board ship, but I prefer to leave the office at the office. Consider what follows your penance for the day.
* * * * *
On September 20 I came across an intriguing thread at the Catholic Answers discussion forums. The topic was "Why I Am a Catholic Vegan."When I first came across the word "vegan" some years ago, I thought it was a neologism that referred to extraterrestrials from a planet orbiting Vega, which is the brightest star in the constellation Lyra. Maybe I had been watching too many science fiction movies.It turned out that "vegan" came into use around 1944 and means "a strict vegetarian, one that consumes no animal food or dairy products." A run-of-the-mill vegetarian refuses to eat meat but will consume milk, cheese, and eggs. A vegan won't touch even those items because they come from animals.My contribution to the discussion about "Why I Am a Catholic Vegan" was post number 27. I reproduce it below. If you want to read the whole discussion, go to:http://forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=15375

* * * * *

I find vegetarians and vegans to be inconsistent in their principles and inconsiderate in their practices. The chief problem is that, while both disapprove of killing animals, they approve of killing plants.

From Catholic theology we know that man, animals, and plants all have souls. Man's soul is a spirit and therefore is immortal. The souls of animals and plants, as St. Thomas Aquinas noted, are material principles. They die when the animals and plants die.

Thus there is a symmetry between animals and plants. There is no good reason to treat them differently. It is false to say that animals must be protected but that plants are expendable.

I don't think it's right to kill either animals or plants. Thus I subsist on water and minerals only. I use a mortar and pestle to grind up a complex of minerals that works for me. I admit that the taste leaves a bit to be desired, but that is a small price to pay for doing the right thing.

In this part of the country I can find all the minerals I want at abandoned quarries and mines. We do have a lot of sandstone, though, and I have to work around it because I don't care for the gritty feel in my mouth.

My favorite mineral is tourmaline, particularly the deeper shades. They result in a smoother taste. Garnet isn't too bad either, but I know it upsets some people's stomachs.Since I'm against killing animals and plants, I'm also against using their byproducts. Not only does this mean no fur but also no cotton or other natural fibers. Everything I wear is synthetic. This has made for some problems during humid weather--another reason I live in the arid Southwest.

Recently, I admit, I've come into a moral conundrum. I tardily have realized that the synthetics I wear are made from petroleum, and petroleum ultimately comes from animals and plants. If I don't believe in eating dead animals and plants, how can I justify wearing them?

I have tried to fashion clothing out of inorganic matter but am having trouble doing so. The best I have done is to make a long tunic out of wired-together oblongs of glass. The tunic looks okay, but I sound like a wind chime whenever I walk. I find I can't sit down because that would shatter the glass, and I could end up with shards in my posterior.

I am considering using metal instead of glass, but I don't have a furnace hot enough to work pieces of it. I suppose I could take the easy route and use an old 55-gallon barrel, but that would look cheesy (and barrels are heavy!). As with the glass tunic, I wouldn't be able to sit, since a barrel has no flex.

One alternative is aluminum foil, but I shy away from wrapping myself in it because it crinkles at every movement and can appear a bit immodest if not properly draped.

I always have prided myself in applying first principles consistently, but I seem to have brought myself to an impasse. Yet I can't escape the logic. If it is wrong to kill and eat animals, it is wrong to kill and eat plants. (I have known some plants that were smarter than some animals, so please don't tell me that what matters is the respective intelligence.)

And if it is wrong to kill and eat animals and plants, it is wrong to kill them and use them for any other purpose, such as clothing ...

Wait a minute! I think I just reasoned myself into a solution! My problem has been using dead things, particularly dead plants, as clothing.

All I need to do is to figure out how to adorn myself with live plants. Maybe I could make a tunic out of small clay pots, each of which grows a leafy plant.

Yes, that's it! I even could do Adam one better if each pot grew a miniature fig tree.

* * * * *

Well, that was my contribution to the discussion. Make of it what you will.As I said, at the moment I am on the Catholic Answers cruise. Cruises are known for their cuisine. The chefs serve up just about every kind of dish one can imagine--and you can eat as much as you can stomach.Vegetarians and vegans have no trouble finding plenty to fill their plates when on cruises, but I'll have to see whether provisions are made for folks on a strict mineral diet. I'll let you know.

from: http://www.catholic.com/newsletters/kke_041005.asp