In case you couldn’t tell from my previous posts, this week has been like a full moon week and, what a trip! I can do it again in a couple of weeks, since it’s really only the new moon.
When life seems to be tripping me up and messing with me just for the fun of it, I do one of three things:
- I get Mad and vow to get even
- I entertain myself with daydreams that I’m the comedy routine for all those bored souls living in the perfection of Utopia in the Great Beyond
- I think deep thoughts about philosophical questions that I’m not really attached to getting a definitive answer for. The exercise lasts just long enough for the good times to roll back round again…
So here’s the philosophical question of the week:
When will veganism not be good enough?
Now, full disclosure, I’m not a vegan – I’m not even a vegetarian, though I did try it for almost 9 months.
(I became pregnant about 3 months into the experiment – month 6 of pre-parenthood arrived and I simply HAD to have a big, ole, greasy, wonderful burger. Not my fault, the child-unit was male and a meat eater. He played soccer with my ribs until I gave into his selfish and un-evolved demands.)
Here’s the rub – I understand all the reasons for being a vegan or vegetarian – factory farming and the horrific living conditions of those animals horrifies me and I’ve changed my shopping habits in order to not support these kinds of operations (Buy Direct and Local from Humane Ranchers – Go Team!)
I understand the evolutionary jumps we’ve taken as a species which took us from the first step of leaving cannibalism behind to widen enough to include our fellow animals – I get it, I really do, but there are things that still puzzle me.
Since Thursday was sort of my melt down day, I called one of my fellow philosophical buddies and posed the question to him, rather than deal with a computer blue screen. He thinks the vegetarian path decision has to do with the scale of consciousness, once you take out the variable of factory ranching practices.
For instance, he thinks some vegetarians are okay with eating fish, or worms… but not cows.
Funny, after learning about the worm angle, I don’t feel so bad about eating beef…
I reminded him of the federally funded, 6 million dollar study conducted in the late 90’s that proved fish felt pain when they got a hook caught in their mouth – true story – your tax dollars at work.
A black SUV pulled up to my house, men in black suits and black shades handed me a briefcase with 6 million in it and I said, very soberly, “Fish feel pain when a hook gets caught in their cheek.”
I digress – At the end of the conversation, I was still wondering how we will survive when we realize we shouldn’t be eating plants, either.
You’re laughing?!? Really? Well, read on….
I watched this documentary about plant intelligence once – so long ago, I can’t even remember enough of the title to link to it for you.
Yes, I Googled it – didn’t find the one I’m thinking of..
So the following is paraphrased and may not exactly nail down the specific and correct plant, country or animal species name – but I really did see a documentary that included this information…
There are plants that dance. In fact, some guy down in South America trained them to dance in certain ways to certain songs. They remembered the moves he showed them previously and after a point, they started making up their own moves.
Once, an antelope type animal in some part of Africa started dying off – poaching or other nefarious acts were thought to be culprit, but it turned out that a local type of tree had increased it’s toxicity levels, because it was being attacked and eaten by antelope, who normally ate grass, but were desperate for food in the midst of a drought.
In self defense, the tree not only increased it’s own toxicity, but also sent out microscopic spores to telegraph the “OMG! We are under attack! Save Yourselves!” message to trees of the same species over a 300 mile radius – which they all promptly did and massive numbers of antelope started dying of food poisoning…
Just tried another Google search – seriously, you’ve got to see this documentary – if you can figure out which one it is…
Activism aside, the choice to be a vegetarian or vegan always seemed to me a spiritual/moral stance – that we choose not to eat other beings who have intelligence and feelings too.
If this is true, then by all rights, we really shouldn’t be eating plants either, since they have demonstrated both.
Now what, pray tell, are we going to do?
I swear, when I was young and fun, I never spent Friday nights like this – Honest! And I just don’t know if I can deal with writing a post that isn’t linked to the real story – just in case the dancing plants were actually in India…
PS – Update 10/24/16 – The following documentary comes close on many of the topics covered in the original one I watched – not exactly – but close enough! 🙂 In the Mind of Plants.