this is a blog post which we wanted to write for a while now, which we find is very important in order to understand and to be understood. This blog post will be especially for non-vegans, trying to understand the mindset and intentions of a/your vegan family member, friend, co-worker or partner or movement itself. Veganism is easier to understand than it first meets the eye.
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As a non-vegan, this may also be the first insight you’ll get on the most loyal, kind and fastest growing movement existing, which strongly stands for compassion, equality, and justice among all species and genders. This movement is more than it first meets the eye and it goes way further than your first experience and/or impression, which most people find very ‘extreme’, but isn’t in any way. But keep on reading – we would really love you to understand.
The majority of humans already came across the term ‘Veganism’ once before and might even know somebody who’s already vegan. But what does the term ‘being vegan’ even mean? Therefore we’d like to state the international terminology by The Vegan Society:
‘A philosophy and way of living which seeks to exclude—as far as is possible and practicable—all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose; and by extension, promotes the development and use of animal-free alternatives for the benefit of humans, animals and the environment. In dietary terms, it denotes the practice of dispensing with all products derived wholly or partly from animals.’
WHY PEOPLE CHOOSE TO GO VEGAN
Don’t worry, veganism is not a cult. It’s simply representing the moral and ethical position, that all life is worth the same and that humans shouldn’t harm others if we don’t have to. There are different approaches to veganism, as stated in our blog post ‘Vegan Starter Kit’, mostly out of
- ethical reasons: animal rights and justice: all life is worth the same
- environmental reason: animal agriculture is one main factor causing the greenhouse effect and furthermore global warming (destruction of our planet)
- health reasons: intolerances, heart diseases or illness of family members and friends
What most people don’t know when going vegan is, that veganism is also a strong feminist issue, human rights issue, world hunger issue, wildlife extinction issue and the list goes on. The three main reasons listed above are the focus points. The realization that we’re all supporting an industry, which is destroying lives and the planet we live on – for only profits.
Veganism is about ethics. No matter what approach someone has to veganism, it is the consistent ethics that make a vegan, vegan.
Vegans got to think further, and beyond the system of our society’s walls and their unique and individual realization, almost an epiphany and change to veganism can’t be more different from each other. Some take years to make the final change, some change overnight.
WHEN THE TRUTH AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH HITS YOU
It is very hard for every single vegan to come to the realization and conclusion, what they’ve been supporting with their money all their lifelong – direct animal cruelty and animal abuse. Only a few of us were raised vegan in our generation. Most vegans are ethical vegans, which is also the strongest bond and commitment to the movement. Once you know the truth it is hard to ignore it.
The truth of what’s done to animals, other living beings whose hearts are beating just like ours, what they have to go through and in the end have to pay with their life against their will, so humans can have a 5-minute taste in their mouth, hurts. It hurts so much you often feel lost at first. You don’t know what to do, and How to do it. Because you can’t love animals and eat them.
It’s hard and often times unbearable to live in a non-vegan, ‘carnist’ world and it’s emotionally straining to be confronted with the glorification of dead animal corpses and secretions – through advertisements, get-togethers, festivities, etc. It’s hard for everyone to see behind all of it and break down the walls of common appeals and fallacies, but vegans are the ones who made it. And you can learn so much from them, if you’re open to it and listen closely to how everything is connected.
ABOUT MISINFORMATION AND MANIPULATION
For vegans, it’s hard to see others putting animal body parts and secretions into their bodies, of once living beings who only wanted to live, but couldn’t and which you’re fighting for as a vegan (activist). It’s hard to watch others – loved ones – getting manipulated and fooled by the industry and risk their health and it’s hard to withstand social pressure, wrong accusations, prejudices (of malnutrition, extreme behavior, etc.) and judgments.
But what’s probably the hardest part, is not being seen for what a vegan stands up for and speaks out for: justice, honest justice for all species, being against cruelty and violence towards other living beings. Aren’t these all values we love and want in others? Aren’t these values we want to pass on to our future generations? To be kind, compassionate, loving and respectful of life?
WHY IT IS SO HARD FOR VEGANS TO TALK TO FAMILY MEMBERS ANS FRIENDS ABOUT VEGANISM
There’s a huge difference in conversation when it comes to talking to family members and friends. The emotional connection is much higher and nerves can be lost much easier, than talking to a stranger on the streets, who you don’t know and who you’ll most likely never see again. Misunderstandings which can often lead to terrible arguments, stress, frustration, and tears on both sides – are often the result, when family members are not yet there to seriously consider a vegan lifestyle themselves, out of lack of knowledge on the industry or the importance of the problem.
It may be quite hard to understand where your vegan family member and friend is coming from. Please listen to him/her and let him/her explain WHY he/she chose a vegan lifestyle and please try to understand – that the only thing they want, is You not paying for animal cruelty.
WHY DO VEGANS WANT ME TO GO VEGAN?
Of course, vegans want other people to go vegan as well, and of course as fast as possible. Why though? Isn’t it a personal choice what to eat?
Vegans have realized that humans started to evolve living in a highly brainwashed and manipulated society, being absolutely disconnected to farm animals – and at the same time never question anything or got used to how it is. Vegans see the cruelty, violence, and injustice of our social system and the industry, done to the enslaved animals. They have rediscovered and strengthen what the majority of humans are capable of feeling: Empathy. Meaning, they can put themselves into somebody else’s position – the animal’s position – and can imagine how it must be like being worth nothing, treated as a commodity and an object for profits.
‘WHAT WE EAT IS A PERSONAL CHOICE, ISN’T IT?’
It should be a personal choice and it is when you’re choosing between one vegan meal and another vegan meal – if you choose to eat more potatoes than rice or lower your sugar intake. It is never a personal choice to consume animals because there’s somebody else – a victim – involved, who also has a saying in this: the animal. Did somebody ask the animal if him/she wants to be forcefully bred into existence, exploited and killed for a taste pleasure only?
It is a good thing if vegans would like you to go vegan as well if they would love you to choose kindness over violence. It is a positive thing and conversation, not a missionary or forceful approach if vegans take their time to talk to you, to make you rethink in order to grow for yourself – and ask for not hurting another living sentient being, save our planet and care about your own well-being.
As many myths there might be concerning nutritional facts, there is no doubt that the only ethical way to live aligns with our moral humane (kind, compassionate) understandings, is to live vegan. Not paying for murder done to a different species if we don’t have to, to survive.
LAST BUT NOT LEAST …
Please, don’t be mad at your vegan friend and family member, partner or acquaintance for telling you the ugly truth of the animal industry, but be mad at our social capitalist system for keeping the truth from you all your life long. Change something, because it’s never too late to make life-changing decisions. Please, stop paying for animal cruelty and go vegan.
Please note: All definitions of words and/or stated facts are based on the correct terminology and are carefully research and the sources taken are linked here or directly in the blog post. This blog post is also stating a personal opinion and views on certain topics.
All shown illustrations and graphics are our own and are highly restricted to be copied and used freely for commercial reasons, without any permission. Linked accounts are out of personal interest and no paid collaboration.
Definition of Veganism / The Vegan Society – Definition of Veganism