How Awakening Led me to Advocating Veganism
By Linden-Mackey, Guest Contributor
[fusion_dropcap color=”” boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”1px” class=”” id=””]I[/fusion_dropcap] have always been more of a seeker than a finder, a searcher than a settler – always looking for a purpose bigger than myself to stand up for, something crucial and urgent and compassionate – yet with a practical application that could change the world. Nothing is more elemental and critical than what we put into our bodies for nourishment and sustenance – if we are fortunate, three times a day, every day of our lives. Veganism offers the most natural, perfect, and unassailable purpose.
I came to this lifestyle originally for health purposes. Randomly picking up a somewhat obsolete yet classic in its day book, Fit for Life, I was startled and convicted by obvious truths that I had never before considered: Why are humans the only species never to be weaned, and beyond that, to drink milk from a species different than our own? Why in the world do we feel it necessary to eat animal flesh for strength and health when it is clear from elephants, oxen and whales that all vital ingredients for life can be found in plants?
I was a captive from that point on, and read as widely and deeply as my time allowed (Animal Liberation; Eternal Treblinka; Eating Animals). I was unable to turn my head and heart away from how our food system is ball and chained to cruelty and exploitation – and that all who partake in its products are likewise complicit.
I made the decision to embrace a vegan lifestyle just over a year ago, and so I am quite the young traveler on this road. I daily encounter my choice and its ramifications – whether it is speaking up at business dinners about why I’m eating only the sides of spinach and carrots, or slowly bringing my husband and two young-adult sons along (a mission in and of itself, although all are willing to various degrees). Living in a transitioning household is a big challenge – and I fully capitalize on my family’s laziness around cooking! (The day my eldest announced that he loves fried tofu was ground-breaking.)
For the moment I need to keep my day job in risk management, a necessity to keep my family financially afloat, but the opportunity to write for YDV offers me the springboard to effect change in the world, which is exciting and humbling all at once.
Advocating veganism through writing is how I can best make a difference – books have always defined who I am and writing is how I understand the world. My tattered childhood copy of Charlotte’s Web has been a lifelong talisman – the spider Charlotte one of my earliest heroes and to whom I still aspire:
She was in a class by herself. It is not often that someone comes along who is a true friend and a good writer. Charlotte was both.
Being a true friend to all species, and not just humans, is what the vegan walk is all about.
Photo credit: Linden Mackey