I don't mean to offend people but this has been bugging the hell out of me for a few months now.
I'm not a vegetarian or vegan, I like my meat medium to medium rare and love bacon. I tried to be a vegetarian once and found out about a few new food sensitivities that I didn't know about before that prevent me from getting certain nutrients from a plant based only diet. Maybe one of these days when I have enough money to hire a dietitian I might try again but for now I'm not worried about it too much and other people shouldn't be either.
Other people also shouldn't feel the need to push bias, false, and offensive into my face about my own belief system either.
I'm a happy omnivore like many animals out there, the human digestive track is capable of digesting meat. As long as the meat that I eat comes from humanely treated animals than I'm happy.
This does not mean that I am a hypocrite or that I'm just trying to be popular with claiming to be a type of pagan. I've been some type of pagan or another for almost half my life, I'm pretty sure it's not a phase.
Being vegan or a vegetarian is NOT a requirement for becoming most types of pagan. There may be some trads out there that require it but most don't.
If you are a vegan or vegetarian then I support you, you have a bit of hard work to start by figuring out the nutrition intake and all that but it's a healthy life to live if you are doing it right. I kept a few of my vegetarian recipes because they were healthier that some of my go to favorites and have increased my health a lot by making a few simple changes, but because of how I was born, it is not possible to switch to a complete vegan or vegetarian diet at this time of my life.
What brought on this little rant of mine?
A bus buddy that I haven't talked to in a while.
I don't take the bus often anymore but a few months ago I use to take it daily and I met a person by pure chance who loved to talk about religion and compare religions as much as I do, if not more. Also by pure chance this person got off at the same bus stop as me.
Good enough we had many interesting debates about differing religions and picking out both the good and bad of each. We even debated Christianity and the differing types of paganism.
He didn't know much about paganism or christianity so I pointed him to a few books and websites so he could catch up and we could continue our debates...I don't think he touched those sources but that's ok, he wanted to do his own research.
Now I don't mind research, I think everyone should research things that interest them or things that are important in your daily life so you can get a good understanding about those things.
He disappeared for almost a week but when he came back he was a changed man. How?
Apparently he was in the process of converting to christianity. Great I congratulated him on finding something that he liked, and then we started the debates again. for the first week it was basically me debunking what he had learned about christianity (he went on quite a few trollish websites), I tried to do this as respectfully as I could and even gave him the name of a pastor I know who is very open to questions. He was impressed and by the end of the week he was under the impression that I was a christian. And in turn very shocked to find out that I left christianity after being in it for roughly 15 years.
Then the following week we started on paganism, again I assume he went to some bad websites because he was under the impression that paganism falls into 2 camps. Those that worship satan and do blood sacrifices and those who live in the trees and are one with nature. (the complete extreme ends of the spectrum.)
I then tried to educate him of the hundreds of types of pagan and told him that there are hundreds if not thousands of trads that I don't know about. He was very resistant to learning about paganism and was very adamant that his information was the right and that what I knew was a fairy tale. This obviously bugged me and I told him that as a pagan I was slightly offended but some of those stereotypes that he insisted were true. This was only day 3 into the pagan week and things turned around right quick. First he tried to convert me, and when he found out that it wouldn't work that way he then proceeded to put me and my beliefs down and claim that I was a wife of the devil and such.
the main points he brought against me were the typical points that I've heard before
*you're going to hell
*satan has tricked you
*you must be sacrificing small animals on weekends or full moons to get what you want
* you throw curses all willy nilly
This obviously pisses me off but I can let it bounce off me, all I have to do is change seats. He followed me to my new seat and then hit hard a few times with his words.
(remember his 2 extreme ideas on paganism)
"You can't be a pagan, you eat meat and you live in the oilsands. Pagans are supposed to protect nature, not destroy it by eating meat, torturing animals through farming, or standing idly by while destruction is happening through mining. How can you call yourself a pagan? Your not just lost to god, you can't even follow your own perceived morals."
Now I've seen what happens out on site, is it good? no. is it as bad as people show in the media? no is it as bad as people want to believe? no
is the land recovering? yes, slow and steady but yes.
I walked through 40 year old reclaimed land and didn't know it was reclaimed because I didn't know mining had happened there in the first place. I took those courses and seen first hand what happens, was critical about a lot of it but the end result is eventually achieved and animals do come back and thrive.
I know that the destruction is happening in a controlled setting and that mother nature isn't having any problems taking back the spend land. Do I agree with it? no I have seen things that I didn't like but what can I do about it other than life my life to the best of my ability and help others to so the same. I can't shake a magic wand and stop all the mining.
But this guy assumes that just because I can't stop it means that I'm choosing not to stop it and therefore going against my beliefs all together.
I covered the fact that it is not possible at this time for me to become vegan or vegetarian and be healthy but because I can't afford the proper person to help me to build a diet around what I can and can't eat then that must means that I'm an evil bitch that tortures animals for fun before eating their children alive.
Now I haven't spoken to this guy in a while but what was said those few days were just burning in the back of my brain and making me mad at the weirdest times, but what really set it off today was another persons blog response on a different blog that I read.
No I refuse to link it or say anything to compromise the person because they are entitled to their ignorant opinion. No matter how mad it makes me.
There is a poster that insisted that if you claimed to be a pagan without being a vegan then you are a fluffy bunny that doesn't deserve to be acknowledged among the community, and that the vegans are sick and tired of always being harassed because they are vegans and are only informing people about the fact that they are fluffy and unhealthy because you are not a vegan.
I'm sorry but fluffy? I'm fluffy?
If you feel the need to put down what I do and believe be prepared for the repercussions. I refuse to let you go spreading hate and ignorance around unchecked. I will take action to inform others about how wrong you are and respond to your post in a polite and informative fashion so that others who read it will know that I am not trying to start an argument but to inform people about your common misconception.
I do not engage in fighting but I will make sure that people see both sides of the coin. If you choose to fling names and insults then it is you that is invalidating your own argument. I refuse to lower myself to flinging insults over the internet over simple ignorance.
Now if you will excuse me I need to go blow off some steam by running down to the game store and destroying my friends in a game of pick up Pathfinder,VTM, or D&D. Plus I head that there's a sale today.