If Vegans get to wax evangelical about their personal choice of diet, than we
carnivores get to too.
Here’s a collection of articles about eating meat: the natural choice:
- The Natural Order of Things
- Eating Meat Is Natural
- Northern Exposure on Hunting (and eating meat)
- Nevleflah’s Personal Story
“I didn’t claw my way up to the top of the food chain to eat vegies.” -unknown
(A Druid Viewpoint)
by Sybok Pendderwydd
Druidism is a nature religion. By “nature” we mean that we hold sacred the things of nature and the natural order of things. So we celebrate the ecosystem we live in, with all of it’s diversity. We work to conserve what we have been entrusted with.
We celebrate the realm of the sky, the stars, the planets, the moon and their cycles. The cycles of weather and of the growing seasons. We celebrate snow, but also avalanches. We celebrate the spring, but also tornadoes, floods, and hurricanes. We celebrate wind, rain, and lightning, and recognize
that in all these things there is neither good nor evil, but that this the natural order of things.
We celebrate the realm of the sea and the abundance of life therein, from whence we ourselves came so many millions of years ago. We celebrate the gentle whale and the predatory shark. The dolphin and the jellyfish. The predator and the prey, and recognize again that there is neither good nor evil, but that this is the natural order of things.
We celebrate the realm of the earth. The green lushness of spring and summer. The barrenness of fall and winter. The diversity of mountain, plain, desert and forest. The cycle of life on the earth. We celebrate the grasses of the fields, nourishing the wildlife of the forest. We celebrate the deer which nourishes the cougar. The cattle which nourishes the human. The food chain in all it’s natural complexity, and recognize that there is neither good nor evil, but that this is the natural order of things.
We celebrate ourselves, humankind, man and woman, god and goddess. We celebrate what we are, predatory animals whose evolution has put us at the top of the food chain. We celebrate freedom and equality and we give thanks to the realms of sky and sea and earth for giving us all we need to live
and prosper in this place. We give thanks to the cattle, which nourish us, and honor the spirit of life within the animal we eat. We give thanks to the grasses which feed the cattle which nourish us, and honor the spirit of life within the plant we eat. For the plants and the animals feed us, clothe us and provide us shelter. And we recognize that there is neither good nor evil, but that this is the natural order of things.
The Druid’s main tenet is “Nature is good.” And so it is.
EATING MEAT IS NATURAL
by Jim Powlesland
Animal “rights” activists often make the claim that humans do not “require animal protein to meet our nutritional needs”. While this is true, it is not a dietary choice recommended by North American health authorities.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture 1995 Dietary Guidelines for Americans the recommended diet is one “with most of the calories from grain products, vegetables, fruits, lowfat milk products, lean meats, fish, poultry, and dry beans [and] fewer calories from fats and sweets.”
As for vegetarian diets, the Guidelines state: “Most vegetarians eat milk products and eggs, and as a group, these lacto-ovo-vegetarians enjoy excellent health… You can get enough protein from a vegetarian diet as long
as the variety and amounts of foods consumed are adequate. Meat, fish, and poultry are major contributors of iron, zinc, and B vitamins in most American diets, and vegetarians should pay special attention to these nutrients.”
As for vegan diets, the Guidelines, in part, state: “Vegans eat only food of plant origin. Because animal products are the only food sources of vitamin B12, vegans must supplement their diets with a source of this vitamin.”
While lacto-ovo-vegetarian diets rely on animal by-products to be complete, vegan diets rely on artificial dietary supplements and are by definition incomplete and unnatural.
Anthropologists and human paleontologists have found that modern Homo sapiens, despite our advanced technology and civilization, are not significantly different either physiologically or psychologically from our Paleolithic ancestors. In their groundbreaking 1988 book “The Paleolithic Prescription: A Program of Diet & Exercise and a Design for Living“, medical doctors Eaton and Konner and researcher Shostak used the Paleolithic diet which consisted of a wide variety of vegetables, fruit, and wild game (which is very lean meat) to recommend a modern diet similar to the American Dietary Guidelines.
Eaton et al. also claimed that, while adult vegans “can be basically healthy… there is some evidence that children raised exclusively on such diets have slowed growth and development. To propose humans as basically
vegetarian in nature, however, is clearly unjustified. Meat is, and has always been, a major constituent of the human diet.”
Humans have evolved for the past two million years as omnivorous hunters/gatherers and have as much right to eat meat as any other predator on this planet. However, unlike other modern predators, many of whom often begin eating their prey while it is still alive and conscious, we treat our prey far more humanely.
Instead of trying to rewrite or deny our evolutionary and dietary heritage, it would make more sense to adopt an animal welfare approach that advocates the humane use of our animal food sources rather than an animal”rights” position which ultimately seeks no use of and no contact with animals (including pets).
(Dialogue From Episode 3.8: “A Hunting We Will Go” 11/18/91)
JOEL: There’s an animal, nibbling on a bush or whatever. You sneak up and put a bullet in it’s brain. Where’s the sport in that?
CHRIS: On the other hand they kind of expect it of us, right Holling?
JOEL: The animals expect us to prematurely end their natural lives?
HOLLING: Well, they know that it’s our natural place on the food chain.
CHRIS: Why do you think we have these incisors? It’s for tearing into the meat; blood dripping off the fangs. It’s best to kill the meat before you eat it, otherwise you tend to hear it scream.
JOEL: Fine, but God also gave us Sizzler and Safeway and T-bone wrapped in little cellophane packages from animals that don’t know a better way of life.
HOLLING: I’d rather get my brains blown out in the wild than wait in terror at the slaughterhouse.
CHRIS: Take the Naskay Indians. They believe to this day the destruction of their people came from eating domestic instead of wild animals..
HOLLING: We’re predators Joel, with eyes in the front of our head like other predators: wolves, and bears, owls..
CHRIS: Right, right, I mean; we may be four hundred generations removed from the African Pliocene, when we left home in the morning with spears in our hands, but there’s no better antidote for our current domestication than to stalk some wild beast through the tall timber.
Note: Northern Exposure is available for purchase (DVD) at Amazon.com.
I grew up on a farm in rural Illinois. My father and his brothers raised and butchered beef for the kosher beef market in Chicago. This happened by accident. It was discovered that the methods of raising and butchering beef practiced by my family, handed down from generation to generation from Brittany, were the exact methods proscribed by the Jewish dietary laws (except that we also practiced them on pork, a definitely non-kosher animal). A Rabbi would come down about once a month to bless the animals and certify the farm.
The cattle were treated almost like pets. In fact, my brother and I almost became vegetarians because of this. We had a calf named Elmer, that we would play with. We would come home from school and ride him around the farm, feed him, groom him etc. Just like a dog in many ways. We knew of course that Elmers ultimate destiny was someones dinner table. We accepted that and so it was no surprise to us when we came home one day and Elmer was gone. About two weeks later we were sitting at the table on a Sunday, enjoying steak and “Boudain” (another very un-kosher dish — blood pudding). About half way through dinner, my dad piped up with: “Boy, Elmer sure tastes good!” My brother and I looked and each other, got up, and left. My mom had a fit (at my dad). It was about a week before we ate meat again. We got over it.
My dad and brothers were also hunters. We had wild game on the table a lot of the time. My dad felt that since it was his land, he had rights that the government said he did not (he was a Libertarian I guess). He used to carry a shot gun on the tractor when he worked in the fields. Any game he would scare up; rabbit, quail, pheasant, whatever, he’d shoot, field dress and bring home for dinner. Every year we would all go hunting in the fall for deer. We used bows and arrows and camped in the woods for the weekend. Each morning one of my uncles would offer a prayer to the deer we were about to stalk. This was a family tradition handed down from our ancestors, as was the prayer to the animal after it was killed, thanking it for it’s sacrifice to nourish our bodies. The whole experience had a ritualistic feel to it. The ritual continued right down to field dressing the animal (again using methods that would be considered Kosher), and later at the table, the spirit of the animal was again thanked and blessed.
They didn’t know it (being the good Catholics they were) but they were reenacting ancient Celtic rites of the hunt. The ancient Celts ate their god Cernunnos; the horned (antlered) god of the hunter and hunted. He was the god of fertility and of the wild. The Lord of Samhain and Beltain. As Catholics this was natural too, since they symbolically eat their god (inthe form of communion) at every Mass.
*Boudain: Pronounced “Boo-dan”, it’s a traditional Breton dish made only three places in North America: Quebec, Beaverville, IL, and Louisiana. In Beaverville there is a yearly festival (The Homecoming) around the first weekend of August where tons of Boudain are consumed by folks from hundreds of miles around. Boudain is a mixture of cornmeal and blood from fresh beef (or pork or deer). My uncles would catch it in buckets as the animal hung upside down after slaughter. They would quickly spirit it away so the Rabbi wouldn’t know they were saving it — a practice he would frown on. It’s usually spiced and served as a loaf or used to stuff sausage skins. The Cajun variation of it is of course, very spicy. In my family it was served practically every Sunday, just like many families always served chicken.