Monday, 3 October 2011

Don't be a chicken - rescue one!

I discovered a lovely blog today written by someone who rescues battery farmed hens.  It's so inspirational to see people going up against factory farming in this way - I wish I took more direct action like this!

Check out the blog here:
Life with the Ex-Batts

At the end of one post, the author has written:
'So no matter how small a cog I am, if all of us small cogs work together, those wheels of change will slowly grind towards that free ranging happiness for all our hens.'

I love the sense of hope in this line, and the way it highlights that although we may feel alone, we are in fact part of a growing, passionate community, and together we can achieve anything, no matter what the odds.



(Unfortuantely, these days it costs considerably more than a tuppence a bag to feed the birds...)

The blog also reminded me just how much I love the quirky characteristics of hens.  Do hens and donkeys make good friends?  Because if not, I'll have a big decision to make when I get that huge piece of land in the countryside I'm dreaming of (attached to a vegan cafe and yoga studio, of course! Better get saving...)

Peace and love to you all, cluck cluck.
xxxx

2 comments:

  1. What a cool blog.. I aspire to rescuing hens when I am of age to own a home and some land. I really that true impact: taking veganism from something semi-abstract and making it a bit more concrete...

    Forgive me for asking such a huge question, esp. when it does not pertain to this specific post, but as one Christian who is a vegan to another I wish to ask what your view/interpretation is of the fact that Jesus ate fish/meat (according to the Scriptures) and that, according to Paul, vegetarianism can either be a doctrine of devils or a sign of weak faith? I know my question may sound sarcastic, and if you're like me, it's uncomfortable. I was just wondering if you had any insights you'd be willing to share.

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  2. Great to hear from you, Lydia, thank you for your kind comment about the blog - it's so good to know that people with similar values are reading it! Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts and questions.

    Firstly, I must make it clear that I am in no way an expert on the Bible (to put it mildly!), and I was not even sure of the exact passage you were discussing until I looked it up. Therefore, to begin with I wanted to link you through to the Christian Vegetarian Association (a site you might have checked out already), as you might find their Q&A section on these issues more helpful than my general musings.

    General questions about biblical passages on diet and animal welfare:
    http://www.all-creatures.org/cva/honoring.htm

    Specific response to the question I think you are asking about what Paul says:
    http://www.all-creatures.org/cva/hgc-replies.htm

    Okay, so that's me passing you on to another resource for a more general view, but since you took the time to ask me specifically (from one christian vegan to another!) I'll give you my personal stance on this issue.

    I want to start by saying that I don't find your question uncomfortable at all; in fact, I feel very at peace with how I feel about this subject. As I have said in previous blog posts, we find ourselves in a very specific situation with the cruelty of factory farming today, and it is one I feel compelled to respond to. Often, when meat-eating/diet is discussed in the Bible, it is in the context of Jewish tradition and the particular circumstances of the time, and thus passages are often dealing with a very different debate or situation than we find ourselves in today. For me, being a vegan is not about religious legalism, a search for purity, or a way to distinguish myself from others. Rather, it is just one of the ways I try live more compassionately and make loving choices in my life. It is not an issue of diet, it is an issue of values, and I value peace and mercy and compassion, and my vegan lifestyle is just one way of expressing and living out those values.

    The Jesus eating meat one is tricky, but my response is the same: We must remember that veganism today is responding to a particular crisis we find ourselves in in modern capitalist society, where greed and self-interest are put above honouring life and creation. This is an issue of respect for all life, both human and non-human. In countries where meat is an essential part of the diet (due to climate, land quality, resources, etc.), livestock are more valued and respected - they are not seen as cogs in a factory machine. It is not the eating of meat in itself that I have a problem with (though I would never choose to eat it if I had a choice, and I count myself incredibly fortunate that at the moment I do), it is the absolute abuse of power and the infliction of cruelty on the weak and voiceless that I find absolutely intolerable.

    I discuss this more in my blog post on The Urgency of Unity, which you might find of interest, in addition to the comments:

    http://theveganchristian.blogspot.com/2010/02/urgency-of-unity.html

    I hope that this begins to answer your question. I think we will all feel differently about this issue, as we all have slightly different beliefs and worldviews, but overall if our actions are motivated by a desire to be more loving and merciful, I think that that can only be a good thing.

    Thank you so much for getting in touch, I hope you find the blog a helpful resource and I look forward to your thoughts on future posts!

    Peace and love to you
    xxxx

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