calling all Baha'i Vegetarians and Vegans

All research or scholarship questions
Guest

Postby Guest » Fri Nov 05, 2004 9:57 am

hi,

You probably know this already, but just in case, there is a small compilation of Abdulbaha (I'm pretty sure it's from him) that treats directly on the subject of nutrition. Many passages in this compilation relate more or less directly to vegetarianism. If you don't know about it, I can try to find my copy and give you the exace reference if you want.

Robert

Guest

Postby Guest » Sat Nov 06, 2004 10:13 am

I also want to precise that I'm also a bahai who knows all the harm done by the actual food industry and who is trying to become, more than a vegeterian, naturalist.

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Sat Nov 06, 2004 2:16 pm

Dear all,

Below are two pages joined together, one on diet, the other on diet in public discussions (how Bahá'ís are supposed to or not supposed to talk about diet with each other). There is also the compilation from the Research Deparment at http://bahai-library.com/compilation_he ... _nutrition

If you have any categorized quotations to add to this list, please let me know.

thanks,
Brett


<b>Vegeterian diet recommended (though not binding on believers)</b>

"Regarding the eating of animal flesh and abstinence therefrom, know thou of a certainty that, in the beginning of creation, God determined the food of every living being, and to eat contrary to that determination is not approved....Even without eating meat he would live with the utmost vigour and energy. For example, the community of the Brahmins in India do not eat meat; notwithstanding this they are not inferior to other nations in strength, power, vigour, outward senses or intellectual virtues. Truly, the killing of animals and the eating of their meat is somewhat contrary to pity and compassion, and if one can content oneself with cereals, fruit, oil and nuts, such as pistachios, almonds and so on, it would undoubtedly be better and more pleasing."

('Abdu'l-Bahá, from a Tablet - translated from the Persian; Health, Healing, and Nutrition, no. 17)

<b>Simple Vegeterian Diet Preferable to Eating Meat, but a Very Controversial Question</b>

"In regard to the question as to whether people ought to kill animals for food or not, there is no explicit statement in the Baha'i Sacred Scriptures (as far as I know) in favour or against it. It is certain, however, that if man can live on a purely vegetarian diet and thus avoid killing animals, it would be much preferable. This is, however, a very controversial question and the Baha'is are free to express their views on it."

(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer, July 9, 1931; quoted in Lights of Guidance, no. 1010)


<b>Foods of the future</b>

1. cereals (1, 2)
2. grains (1, 3)

3. fruits (1, 2, 3)
4. vegetables (2)

5. nuts (1), such as "pistachios" (1) or "almonds" (1, 2)
6. oils (1)


(The diet here suggested in the Baha'i Writings seems to be not only vegeterian but vegan since dairy products are not presented as examples. However, again, no such diet is binding on believers.)


1. "But now coming to man, we see he hath neither hooked teeth nor sharp nails or claws, nor teeth like iron sickles. From this it becometh evident and manifest that the food of man is cereals and fruit. Some of the teeth of man are like millstones to grind the grain, and some are sharp to cut the fruit. Therefore he is not in need of meat, nor is he obliged to eat it. Even without eating meat he would live with the utmost vigour and energy. For example, the community of the Brahmins in India do not eat meat; notwithstanding this they are not inferior to other nations in strength, power, vigour, outward senses or intellectual virtues. Truly, the killing of animals and the eating of their meat is somewhat contrary to pity and compassion, and if one can content oneself with cereals, fruit, oil and nuts, such as pistachios, almonds and so on, it would undoubtedly be better and more pleasing."

('Abdu'l-Bahá, from a Tablet - translated from the Persian; Health, Healing, and Nutrition, no. 17)

2. "Thou hast written regarding the four canine teeth in man, saying that these teeth, two in the upper jaw and two in the lower, are for the purpose of eating meat. Know thou that these four teeth are not created for meat-eating, although one can eat meat with them. All the teeth of man are made for eating fruit, cereals and vegetables. These four teeth, however, are designed for breaking hard shells, such as those of almonds. But eating meat is not forbidden or unlawful, nay, the point is this, that it is possible for man to live without eating meat and still be strong. Meat is nourishing and containeth the elements of herbs, seeds and fruits; therefore sometimes it is essential for the sick and for the rehabilitation of health. There is no objection in the Law of God to the eating of meat if it is required. So if thy constitution is rather weak and thou findest meat useful, thou mayest eat it."

('Abdu'l-Bahá, from a Tablet - translated from the Persian; Health, Healing, and Nutrition, no. 18)


3."What will be the food of the future?" "Fruit and grains. The time will come when meat will no longer be eaten. Medical science is only in its infancy, yet it has shown that our natural diet is that which grows out of the ground. The people will gradually develop up to the condition of this natural food."

('Abdu'l-Bahá, cited in Julia M. Grundy. "Ten Days in the Light of 'Akka", rev. ed. (Wilmette: Bahá'í Publishing Trust, 1979), pp. 8-9; Health, Healing, and Nutrition, no. 41)


<b>Meat not forbidden (especially for the weak in constitution)</b>

4. "God hath, as a token of His grace, granted you leave to partake thereof [of meat] save during a brief period."
(Summons of the Lord of Hosts, Súriy-i-Haykal, par. 154)

5. "But eating meat is not forbidden or unlawful, nay, the point is this, that it is possible for man to live without eating meat and still be strong. Meat is nourishing and containeth the elements of herbs, seeds and fruits; therefore sometimes it is essential for the sick and for the rehabilitation of health. There is no objection in the Law of God to the eating of meat if it is required. So if thy constitution is rather weak and thou findest meat useful, thou mayest eat it."

('Abdu'l-Baha, compilation on Health, Healing, and Nutrition, no. 18)

6. "...nor is it forbidden to eat meat."

(In a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, 18 December 1945 to an individual believer, compilation on Health, Healing, and Nutrition, no. 61)

<b>Pork is not forbidden</b>

7. "The eating of pork is not forbidden in the Baha'i Teachings."

(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer, March 27, 1938; quoted in Lights of Guidance, no. 1012)


<b>Not to shun the eating of meat</b>

"Say: O concourse of priests and monks! Eat ye of that which God hath made lawful unto you and do not shun meat. God hath, as a token of His grace, granted you leave to partake thereof save during a brief period. He, verily, is the Mighty, the Beneficent. Forsake all that ye possess and hold fast unto that which God hath purposed. This is that which profiteth you, if ye be of them that comprehend."

(Summons of the Lord of Hosts, Súriy-i-Haykal, no. 154)


<b>Simple Vegeterian Diet Preferable to Eating Meat, but a Very Controversial Question</b>

"In regard to the question as to whether people ought to kill animals for food or not, there is no explicit statement in the Baha'i Sacred Scriptures (as far as I know) in favour or against it. It is certain, however, that if man can live on a purely vegetarian diet and thus avoid killing animals, it would be much preferable. This is, however, a very controversial question and the Baha'is are free to express their views on it."

(From a letter written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi to an individual believer, July 9, 1931; quoted in Lights of Guidance, no. 1010)


<b>Need for Moderation and Courtesy in Expressing Opinions on diet and whether to Refuse or Request Specific Foods</b>

"In matters of diet, as in medicine, the Universal House of Justice feels that the believers should be aware that a huge body of scientific knowledge has been accumulated as a guide to our habits and practices. Here too, as in all other things, the believers should be conscious of the two principles of moderation and courtesy in the way they express their opinions and in deciding whether they should refuse food offered to them or request special foods."

"There are, of course, instances where a believer would be fully justified in abstaining from or eating only certain foods for some medical reason, but this is a different matter and would be understood by any reasonable person."

(24 January 1977, written by the Universal House of Justice to an individual believer; in compilation on Health, Healing, and Nutrition, no. 84))

brettz9
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Postby brettz9 » Fri Nov 12, 2004 2:44 pm

Look forward to reading it!

Brett

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Fri Nov 04, 2005 12:52 pm

beagle, mankind will eventually become vegetarian, it is a gradual process and Baha'is are not restricted from eating meat, or should not be made to feel like they are being cruel doing so. 'Abdu'l-Baha even ate meat especially in america and enjoyed it.

"So if thy constitution is rather weak and thou findest meat useful, thou mayest eat it.

http://bahai-library.com/compilations/h ... aling.html

Guest

World not ready for vegan diet

Postby Guest » Fri Nov 04, 2005 3:09 pm

To be sure, the world will, in the not too distant future, adapt to an almost completely vegan diet, but we have some important things to do first and, although I applaud the enthusiasm and zeal of those wishing to push this aspect of the Baha'i Writings to the forefront, I would have to agree with Bahai Warrior and add that it would probably be a better use of our Baha'i resources to solve the root causes that are leading to the mistreatment of animals as comodities of mass consumtion. This goal of adapting to a global vegan diet will be completely realized only when the means of sustaining the elimination of all prejudices and releaving humanity of the disparity of poverty to wealth has been established.

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Postby Baha'i Warrior » Fri Nov 04, 2005 4:45 pm

I would very much have to agree with our friend Guest. Sure, in an ideal society (i.e. a Baha'i society), meat will never be eaten or at least be reserved for special occasions.

Now that does not mean you shouldn't eat vegetables also. I eat tons of broccoli, legumes (including garbanzo beans) with whole wheat to make a full protein, carrots, fruits, sweet potatoes, anything health I can get my hands on. It is very obvious that fruits and vegetables do so many good things that it would in fact be foolish not to consume them. The only thing meat really has to offer is a dense source of calories and quality protein, especially good if you are body building like me and want to put on mass (studies show that consumption of carbohydrates and protein after a workout have an anabolic effect). While you can get this same protein through a mixture of legumes and whole grains, etc., meat tastes too good to abandon (.....salmon..........protein....mmmm.....chew......chew.....)


Health-wise, generally meat is okay except I have read some bad things about red meat, especially beef and pork:

"The bottom line is that the people who were eating the most red meat had higher colon cancer risk than those eating the least," McCullough tells WebMD. "Very few of these lower-risk people ate no red meat. It is not that we are saying people can never have red meat. But this shows it is important to limit the amount of red meat you eat."

Source: http://www.webmd.com/content/article/99/105158.htm?z=1811_81000_0000_f1_03


Microscopic particles (of beef) stay in your colon after you eat red meat and build up and form polyps—very painful—which eventually can and does lead to cancer for most hardcore red meat eaters: "Most polyps are not dangerous. Most are benign, which means they are not cancer. But over time, some types of polyps can turn into cancer."

But it's okay as long as you are moderate


I know this goes beyond the scope of this discussion, but health-wise most meats don't seem to be bad for your health, especially fish. If you want to be "kinder" I guess, you could eat fish because their level of consciousness is less than that of a cow or pig.

And also I’d like to point out that the Writings place the emphasis on being vegetarian, not “vegan.” That goes too far, and you are not “more Baha’i” if you are “vegan” as opposed to being vegetarian. In a Baha’i society, there is no doubt that we will still consume dairy products, eggs, etc. Of all sources of protein, eggs are the most bioavailable, so actually in a way they are better than meat in terms of protein content....milk contains whey and cassien protein which are also superior proteins...

fritzk
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Re: calling all Baha'i Vegetarians and Vegans

Postby fritzk » Fri Oct 03, 2014 3:13 am

I finally became a complete vegan. no dairy, cheese, eggs and as little oil as possible. There is a whole world of new flavors out there. You have to study and practice making new meals. There are thousands of videos on how to change. As Abdul-Baha said." to acquire anything you need knowledge, volition and action. The reasons for becoming vegan are overwhelming and the bahais will soon be tested. Scientists are saying that 30-50% of the global climate change problem is the consumption of meat, dairy, etc. I have known this for 30 years but now there are more and more articles being published about this problem. A UN report verified that the meat industry produces more greenhouse gases than all of the cars and trucks in the world. Even the conservative magazine "Forbes" said "Our best bet for changing the climate is not to eat meat." Here are some reasons;
1 .Abdul-Baha said it's not neccesary
2. Economics of producing meat products
3. better health
4. Impact on the environment.

At last the knowledge is out there, now we need volition and action.

a couple of suggested youtube videos;
Forks over Knives,
Food inc
anything by Dr.s John Mcdougall or Neal Barnard
Read "The China Study"

fritzk
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Re: calling all Baha'i Vegetarians and Vegans

Postby fritzk » Sat Oct 04, 2014 2:17 am

I am a vegan and not a fanatic. I will share my knowledge with anyone and love everyone no matter what they eat but I have to speak out on the health of our planet. We are in grave danger. Climate change is much worse than the computer modals have predicted. 30 to 50% of the problem is the consumption of meat, dairy etc. Please go to the link below. Please start educating yourself. Discuss it. Study. There are hundreds of videos that help you change your diet. Try some vegan recipes. It's not as hard as you think. Be positive. One step at a time.

Baha'u'llah says "ye walk on My earth complacent and self-satisfied, heedless that My earth is weary of you and everything within it shunneth you." Also, Baha'u'llah says " Every man of discernment, while walking upon the earth, feeleth indeed abashed, inasmuch as he is fully aware that the thing which is the source of his prosperity, his wealth, his might, his exaltation, his advancement and power is, as ordained by God, the very earth which is trodden beneath the feet of all men. There can be no doubt that whoever is cognizant of this truth, is cleansed and sanctified from all pride, arrogance, and vainglory..


The propaganda from meat and dairy industries has been effective and disastrous for humanity. Here is just one stat that shows we cannot sustain our present eating habits. "We're killing 1,776 animals for food every second of every day."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/moby/moby ... 89850.html


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