Meeting Myself for the First Time All Over Again
Although I am not vegan, I do feel that I am on a path to living more compassionately. It has been interesting for me to see the parallels my own path of healing has to the healing that I am able to give to the earth.
Most people that I know become vegetarian or vegan because of their compassion and concern for animals. It seems to be a primary pattern that people find out about cruelty to animals and that they are moved out of their feelings to eliminate animal products from their diets and other areas of their lives.
I was actually on a path to self-discovery. Or at least thatís what I thought. Now I know that the path actually IS self-discovery! To be cliché, I was ďfinding myselfĒ. It was through the process of seeing myself clearly for the first time, reuniting with parts of myself that had been denied, stomped on, unsupported, and ignored, that I began to study vegetarianism/veganism. I began as a meat-eating person who thought her eating habits were really healthy. I rarely ate red meat, I never ate meat w/the skin on, didnít eat mayonnaise, only ate eggs occasionally, and so on. Iíve ended up as this other who doesnít eat meat, rarely now eats any animal product, thinks about the lives of animals from a much different perspective, and treats the earth much more kindly.
The fact is, I didnít really end up as an ďother.Ē I actually just delved deeper and found my true self. My former lifestyle of oblivious living was impeding my connection with my God-intended self. As I began to remove the trauma from my diet, the path to myself became clearer. I began to realize that I am a compassionate person who wants to do the right thing, who struggles to become better. I want to embrace myself fully.
I guess it might sound a little selfish, maybe a little too much navel-gazing for some, but for me it is a gift that gives me hope. It allows me to have compassion for humans as well as for other suffering animals. I remember that I didnít know, that I couldnít see the truth, and that my fellow omnivores donít or canít either. I hope to have many years of compassionate eating and living, but I hope that those years donít rob me of the memory of what it was like before I met myself for the first time, all over again.
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