By Published On: 13 March 2014501 words2.5 min read

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Veganism: Activism on the Most Individual Level

By Linden Mackey, Guest Contributor

[fusion_dropcap color=”” boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”1px” class=”” id=””]B[/fusion_dropcap]ecoming vegan is a process, beginning with not eating animals, progressing to not wearing them or using products that involve any animal suffering, to actively advocating for their cause. But it has to start with a decision to change, and to change at a very elemental level – sustenance itself.

One purpose that has sustained me for the past two decades is raising my two boys, and the work that enabled me to do this was brokering commercial insurance.

Insurance and related risk management fields are all about assessing what will and can go wrong.  “What is the worst thing that can happen?” is the final question in underwriting.  It is a constant focus on negative events and the fear surrounding them.

In order to do this work well, I essentially had to largely ignore my truest self – the one who dislikes numbers, analyzing contracts, detailed paperwork, and in essence, commerce in general.  I had to train myself to view the glass half-empty, to look for dark and scary creatures lurking under rocks and around each corner, when I am by nature the opposite – seeing the potential and possibility in most people and aspects of life.

While insurance does help protect the assets of individuals and businesses, and without it, we would all live in perhaps a more fearful place; I have never really felt that I was genuinely helping people as an insurance broker.

On the other hand, veganism is activism on the most individual level.  It’s a voice I can raise every time I put food in my mouth.  I consider this choice and the living out of it as a spiritual practice, one of mindfulness, and one I must continually hone since there are degrees and levels of awareness, and it is surprisingly easy to consume carelessly and poorly, without point.

I believe there really is evil and darkness all around us that remains largely out of sight, but virulent – all one has to do is consider the holocaust of animals taking place on large tracts of land where relatively few people travel and behind discreet concrete bunkers. The idea that humans are somehow ‘more advanced’ than their animal brethren is a pathetic exercise in hubris from a moral standpoint when products obtained under conditions of systemic abuse and torture are routinely consumed.

Veganism is taking a stand for the most vulnerable of us – animals who have no tools or weapons that can effectively stand against the riot of human consumption. This path also helps people, by raising awareness about poor health and the squandering of our environment, and hopefully educating them toward compassion.

Those hoping to effect great change can join veganism as a living out of the deeply true statement:

Any society, any nation, is judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members: the last, the least, the littlest. – Cardinal Roger Mahoney, Creating a Culture of Life, 1998

Photo Credit: HerPhotographer

By Published On: 13 March 2014501 words2.5 min read

Share This Story!

Veganism: Activism on the Most Individual Level

By Linden Mackey, Guest Contributor

[fusion_dropcap color=”” boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”1px” class=”” id=””]B[/fusion_dropcap]ecoming vegan is a process, beginning with not eating animals, progressing to not wearing them or using products that involve any animal suffering, to actively advocating for their cause. But it has to start with a decision to change, and to change at a very elemental level – sustenance itself.

One purpose that has sustained me for the past two decades is raising my two boys, and the work that enabled me to do this was brokering commercial insurance.

Insurance and related risk management fields are all about assessing what will and can go wrong.  “What is the worst thing that can happen?” is the final question in underwriting.  It is a constant focus on negative events and the fear surrounding them.

In order to do this work well, I essentially had to largely ignore my truest self – the one who dislikes numbers, analyzing contracts, detailed paperwork, and in essence, commerce in general.  I had to train myself to view the glass half-empty, to look for dark and scary creatures lurking under rocks and around each corner, when I am by nature the opposite – seeing the potential and possibility in most people and aspects of life.

While insurance does help protect the assets of individuals and businesses, and without it, we would all live in perhaps a more fearful place; I have never really felt that I was genuinely helping people as an insurance broker.

On the other hand, veganism is activism on the most individual level.  It’s a voice I can raise every time I put food in my mouth.  I consider this choice and the living out of it as a spiritual practice, one of mindfulness, and one I must continually hone since there are degrees and levels of awareness, and it is surprisingly easy to consume carelessly and poorly, without point.

I believe there really is evil and darkness all around us that remains largely out of sight, but virulent – all one has to do is consider the holocaust of animals taking place on large tracts of land where relatively few people travel and behind discreet concrete bunkers. The idea that humans are somehow ‘more advanced’ than their animal brethren is a pathetic exercise in hubris from a moral standpoint when products obtained under conditions of systemic abuse and torture are routinely consumed.

Veganism is taking a stand for the most vulnerable of us – animals who have no tools or weapons that can effectively stand against the riot of human consumption. This path also helps people, by raising awareness about poor health and the squandering of our environment, and hopefully educating them toward compassion.

Those hoping to effect great change can join veganism as a living out of the deeply true statement:

Any society, any nation, is judged on the basis of how it treats its weakest members: the last, the least, the littlest. – Cardinal Roger Mahoney, Creating a Culture of Life, 1998

Photo Credit: HerPhotographer

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  1. Amy Bradley March 18, 2014 at 5:45 am - Reply

    I feel like veganism is so deeply personal, too. What we eat and fuel ourselves with is so profoundly integrated into EVERYTHING we do. I’m glad I don’t carry the weight of eating animals!