Through my energy work with living beings, I have developed a love of animals that is so strong, that the thought of harming an animal is unimaginable.
This feeling was cemented when I started watching documentaries about the conditions of animals raised for meat and other products like eggs and milk.
If you put aside the brutality of butchering animals for meat, animals in factory farms still live in cramped, filthy conditions. They are fed drugs and genetically altered to produce more things for us to consume.
Even aside from the animal rights issues, there are worker safety issues and environmental impacts to farming animals on a large scale!
I woke up! The first change I made was to stop eating meat and become a vegetarian. Once I started down the path, I realized I couldn't stop there – I became a vegan.
Being vegan means that you don't use any animal products like eggs, dairy or honey. You don't wear clothing that has silk, wool, or leather. When it comes to beauty products, you have to pay extra attention and read the labels. You have to pass on products like goat's milk soap and creams that have lanolin in them, which comes from sheep.
A common criticism of proponents of animal rights is that they are so focused on animals that they are blind to the suffering of people.
I give a lot of thought to every decision I make, so that I can be as humane and caring as possible.
For example, if I know that a product is manufactured in a third world country where wages are low and conditions are inhumane, then I won't buy the product.
I believe we should treat one another with respect and kindness, so I feel responsible for those who are vulnerable and do not have a voice.
By becoming aware of how my actions affect others and the environment, I can make decisions to reduce the negative effects.
Take palm oil for instance: palm oil is found in all kinds of products ranging from snack foods to fuel. The industry is notorious for deforestation, pollution, and the extinction of animals and indigenous cultures.
As a consumer, I choose to avoid palm oil products and I use my resources to find complementary products that are more ethical and sustainable – and are made closer to home!
Living consciously and conscientiously is not an overnight change, and you are not always in a position where you can make the ideal choice. However, by continually reflecting on your choices and making incremental improvements, you can make the lives of other living beings better, support your local community and help protect the planet!
I HEART Salads!