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To recieve a paper copy of “The semi-vegan”, please send a “large letter” stamp to: Caspari, Longridge, Bankend Road, Dumfries, DG1 4TP. Feel free to spread this pdf file! I have started work on the next issue, so please send comments, letters and articles to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Various well-respected health educators have, in the past, seemingly advocated a pure fruit diet, in favour of all other diets. I am writing this article as I feel that, not only are the general public at risk, but that they also may fall foul to other health educators authors who are also giving what appears to be misleading dietary advice.
Text: Dr Gina Shaw, MA AIYS (Dip. Irid.)
lease be sure that I am not in any way saying this in a superior way, more in a motherly manner! In my practice, I have come across many people who are very influenced by international health educators, both deceased and now active and who have decided to adopt pure fruit diets to their own severe detriment at very costly prices, and I feel that I must warn those whom I associate with to be very cautious as to how health information is interpreted and indeed whether to take this information on board for their own health. I am not in any way condemning a raw
My beautiful kitchen!
By: Tone Lund Berle
food diet. Fruitarianism, taken literally, with the exclusion of nuts, seeds, sprouts, greens and other vegetables is not a nutrient-sufficient diet and will result, in the long-run, in severe malnutrition problems and maybe even death. Diet, of course, is a matter of personal choice and I am not disagreeing with people who spend a matter of a few days or even two or three weeks purely on fruits, juices or the like. However, it must be noted that our individual protein needs must be met in order for us to function adequately and healthily and to ensure we do not run into other deficiencies too, such as a vitamin B12 deficiency. Protein literally means to come first and it certainly needs to! Protein is essential for growth, repair and maintenance of our body and, as such, is a vital nutrient. It can be met perfectly well by supplying ourselves with raw nuts, seeds and raw vegetables (in adequate proportions). So too, must our mineral needs be met, and again this will usually not be met by a fruit diet alone (certainly not on commercial fruit which tends to be of poor quality). Dr Vetrano, a highlyesteemed American hygienic practitioner has recently been warning raw-fooders to make sure they eat sufficient nuts and seeds in their diets in order to meet their protein requirements and I applaud her for what she is doing. One notable, prominent and wellrespected health educator and natural hygienist may have not only endangered, but also lost his own life in order to stick to his own ideals. We must take the time to study the diets of our closest relatives, and we will find that their are no primates in the wild who consume solely of fruits. This will generally give us a good indication of what our natural diets should comprise! If you would like more information visit: www.vibrancyuk.com
Editor: Knut Caspari Contributors: Rebecca Burke Polly Buttons Sophie Christopher-Bowes Amanda Hawkins (page 19) Tone Lund Berle Liz Mackenzie Pete Ryan Dr. Gina Shaw Ishai Silencio Sarah 2 Cover: Janne Eikeblad If you liked the cover, you might wish to visitt her website: natursamfunn.no Address: Knut Caspari, Longridge, Bankend Road, Dumfries, DG1 4TP. E-mail: email@example.com Phone: 01387 265 348 Printer: Short Run Press Print run: 2000 Editing concluded: 26.9.11 Copyright: If quoting from this magazine, please acknowledge the source and do not distort the sense. Published by: Knut Caspari This is a not-for-profit magazine without paid help. So if you would like to help, please do not expect to get paid!
From the editor
This is my first issue. I hope you like it, and would like to help make it even better.
Text: Knut Caspari
ou may be surprised to learn that you can subscribe for free, but the print cost is only 32p per copy. It actually costs more to post the magazine, than to print it! But you may be wondering how it is funded? The funds for this issue, have come from the sale of the Norwegian books on page 29. This cannot last forever, but with a few supporters it can be extended a few issues.
Be a supporter!
By becoming a supporter you pay £7.50 for the next two issues. You choose if you want to receive a bundle or one copy of each issue. If you want a bundle, you can hand out the surplus copies to friends, foes, libarys, veggie restaurants and so on.
Write an article!
I posted an ad on a notice board asking for articles and someone replied: “I would be interested in writing an article, I am always looking for new challenges! Can you send me some more information please?” Well, the idea is that the readers write the articles. My role is to put the view points into print, not to decide what is printed. Think of something you would like to read and write it yourself! The only thing that is important, as my spelling is poor, is to spell-check your article before you send it in.
“What is your target-demographic?”
Another question was: “What is the target-demographic?” I replied I had no time to think one up. (I am that busy!) Sadly the person felt he could not write an article without knowing it. (Which was just as good, as I prefer to read articles written for fun!)
Word counts and deadlines, please!
I also had requests for word counts and deadlines. I deal with neither. I have published a magazine for long enough to know if you ask people to write 100 words, they write 200. If you give them a deadline, they send in the article 3 days late. So please write something, but try and focus on making the article good rather than how many words you use.
Be a friend on Facebook!
I will not bother with a web site for this magazine. What is the point for a printed magazine to have web site anyway? To connect with the readers, this magazine has a facebook page: www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Vegan-magazine/208728409167172 You are welcome to join.
Being 100% vegan
I have been vegan for over a year and a half now and during this time I have removed and replaced animal products within my diet, clothing, cosmetics and toiletries.
Text: Polly Buttons
y initial reason for changing my diet came about after becoming aware of the horrors committed by the poultry and dairy industries. Since then I have gone on to consider the two other main reasons people have for choosing a vegan lifestyle: 1. A vegan diet is very healthy. By adopting a balanced vegan diet it has been documented that people can reduce their risk of obesity, heart disease, stroke and cancer. 2. Veganism is also viewed as being “green” because less precious resources are used to produce a plant-based diet than a diet which includes meat and dairy. Farming animals is also well-known for its heavy contribution to water pollution, land degradation and deforestation world-wide. Recently though I have come to realise that more and more by-products of animal exploitation in existence form many of the well-established items we have in our homes or depend on regularly outside the home. Items which when adopting a vegan lifestyle I am sure the majority don’t even consider. I realise now how naive I was – it is not as easy as I once thought it would be to avoid products which contain animals. So what are these items I refer to? Well… Most plastics and adhesives such as shopping bags, cellophane packages and glue used for woodwork and musical instruments contain animal fats or boiled animal tissue and bone. Buttons, remotes, children’s toys, pens… millions of items, plastic lurks all around and contains animals! Fridges in addition contain Freon which is derived from animal fats. I often use carrier bags when I make impromptu visits to the supermarket or healthfood shop and I also have wooden furniture which is more than likely stuck together with glue
which contains by-products of factory farming. Does this make me less of a vegan? I personally do not believe so. By educating myself I am able to make conscious choices, I am more aware of what my actions and money is supporting should I choose to use or purchase such items. I was also surprised to discover that rubber items – so car, bus, bike etc. tyres often contain animalbased stearic acid to aid in their shaping process. Similarly fireworks also contain stearic acid but you would not know which contain animal or plantbased stearic acid without some research. This can often just be a search online or by contacting the manufactures’ directly. The essential steel, brake fluid and anti-freeze in planes and trains is also made using animals. Does that mean I should walk everywhere if I am to call myself a vegan? This is not a realistic option in my opinion. I do not have a car and walk where I can but also get lifts with friends or use public transport when travelling further afield. Popular hobbies contain animal products; gelatin is used in golf balls, bones appear in inks and paints, hair forms artist brushes, intestines become guitar strings and animal skin become drum skins. Enjoy baking? One food item which sees vegans unknowingly supporting animal exploitation is sugar. I had been vegan for nearly a year before I learnt that some brands of sugar (white & brown) use ash from crushed animal bones in filters to refine the sugar. Vegans can confidently use organic unrefined sugar or agave syrup though. Animals are also used in the manufacturing of computers and photocopiers. I was personally very pleased to discover that the inks used by my tattooist are vegan because as with other inks and paints tattoo ink sometimes contains animal-sourced glycerine or crushed animal bones. There is also the huge arena of medicine, all of the drugs, gelatin capsules
The Vegan Society has an online guide ‘Animal Free Shopper’ (also available to purchase as a book) which is very useful for sourcing animal-free items: www.vegansociety.com
and jabs that contain animals. I am well aware that to create something means the destruction of something else, but I cannot abide the suffering of any sentient being in such an unnecessary and exploitative process. Humans as well as animals are also exploited in horrific ways as capitalism and corruption continues to flourish. I believe we have lost touch with nature and the essential awareness that we are on a par with the other beings that inhabit the Earth. To respect them is both to respect ourselves and the Earth as a whole. Compassion should be at the heart of our existence. Given the level of exploitation which surrounds us, to make a difference can seem an overwhelming, even impossible feat. I believe though that everyone should be confident that they can make a difference to alleviate the suffering in the world and it is up to them to determine their own level of comfort in regards to what they can do. Living a 100% cruelty-free or vegan lifestyle in my opinion is not (currently?) achievable. Suffering is a fact of life but the exploitation of animals and people currently experienced can be improved by our choices.
Start small, one little act or compassionate choice can have a considerable impact. You may inspire others through your actions or motivate yourself to do more in supporting those working towards positive change. I personally feel that education and communication are the best way to spread the message and initiate change. Talk to friends, family and colleagues. Express your views direct to the companies involved and write to your MP. Tell them how you feel. Your opinions matter and they really can have a positive impact.
Spare time on your hand? Write an article!
Building the perfect vegan
During this series we’re going to go into the details of training, diet & recovery in some detail. You have options. If you don’t want to know the ‘whys’, then you can just follow along with the example at the end, but if you want to know why things are as they are, then reading the first part will explain that.
Text and photos: Pete Ryan Dip ISSA CFT SPN
o let’s start with diet & getting a healthy body through nutrition. Your diet will depend upon your lifestyle more than any other factor. The more active you are, then more you will need to consume. It will also be affected by your genetics, the climate, stress & other factors. Obviously we can’t cover all of those in details, but there are ways to make general, broad statements Firstly whole foods are the best way to eat the majority of your food. Having some raw food everyday will also be helpful to your goals. Eating whole foods will help control total calories eaten & they will also help get all the trace nutrients you can miss if you’re eating processed foods. Next up is water. For those who wish to lose fat or are training, or even who wish to think clearly water plays a vital role. If you are even slightly dehydrated then several things happen. For those
trying to lose fat it ‘switches off’ the fat utilisation system & starts storing energy as fat. That’s right, if you are dehydrated you will store more fat even eating the same calories! For those doing exercise dehydration limits performance, so you can do less
An example of a meal plan:
Breakfast Lunch Evening meal
Porridge (add in ground flax seeds AFTER cooking, you can also add protein powder if you are a strength athlete) Mug of herbal tea B12 pill, multi vit/min pill, vitamin D pill
Bean salad Piece of fruit Mug of herbal tea
Buckwheat pasta, tempeh & steamed veggies Piece of fruit Mug of herbal tea DHA pills
Handful of nuts Glass of rice milk
Sandwich or protein shake Glass of almond milk
Whole grain humous sandwich Glass of oat milk
& what you do has less of a positive effect on the body than it should. Finally even mild dehydration adversely affects the brain both directly by not having enough fluid & indirectly by causing the release of stress hormones (being dehydrated is a stress on the body), so it gets a ‘double whammy’ of bad effects. There are a few supplements I recommend. I recommend these to everyone whether vegan, veggie or meat eaters. First up is B12. You don’t need it every day, but the pill is so cheap I suggest that getting into a habit is a good thing. Next up is vitamin D. In the UK probably the majority of people have sub-optimal levels, so taking some vitamin D is best. I suggest 1,000 IUs for smaller people, 2,000 IUs if you are normal or larger. Some people need more, but I suggest you have a vitamin D test – make sure it’s a test for calcidiol (25hydroxyvitamin D – abbreviated to 25(OH)D), as that’s the active form. Recently it’s been found that mushrooms exposed to ultraviolet light produce high levels of vitamin D & are starting to be sold in stores right now. Vegans need to buy vitamin D2 as vitamin D3 is nearly always from animal sources (there is one manufacturer on vegan D3 so it is possible to get D3 that is vegan, just rare). The final necessity is an omega-3 fatty aid source. This is the one essential fatty acid that people are generally low in. Commonly found in flax seeds, walnuts & hemp seeds. One of these should be consumed daily. Having 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds, a handful of walnuts or 2 tablespoons of hemp seeds eaten first thing in the morning will generally be enough, but I do suggest that most people add a DHA supplement in the evening just as insurance (& as necessity for pregnant women, athletes, the elderly & those on restricted calories). Choose one from an algae source, not from fish, krill or other
sea critter (they’ve eaten the algae, so why not get it directly from the source). To soya, or not to soya that is the question! Well that would be question if you believed the scare mongers on the net who rely on your lack of knowledge to frighten you into avoiding what is basically a normal bean. There are some things to watch out for in soya it can affect iodine uptake, so if you are low in iodine then you could slow your thyroid (personally I have a small amount of kelp powder daily, you only need a quarter of a teaspoon to get all the iodine you need). Soya does not feminise males. This is a complete myth – they have taken extreme animal experiment results & used them as ‘proof’ of effect, this is absurd! It’s like taking mother’s milk, filtering out all the oestrogen, force-feeding a male the concentrated hormone & then when he develops female characteristics saying “see mother’s milk feminises you!” it is a silly idea. Personally I eat tofu, tempeh & soya milk on occasions, but I do avoid soya protein powder, not because it’s bad, but because I eat soya, so prefer to get a pea, rice or hemp protein powder just for variety. So, treat soya like any other food, don’t binge, but don’t starve rather than eat it. I think we’ve covered enough of the background, so now let’s get onto an example of a meal plan. (See box below.) I believe the average size male should eat about 6 times a day, the average female about 5. For smaller people you may want to eat less frequently or meal sizes will be too small to satisfy.
If you need any further advice or help, feel free to contact me. As well as being a personal trainer & massage therapist I am also a fully qualified clinical nutritionist, so can help you with any issues you are likely to face. Reach me via the web site: www.veganbodybuilding.org
Our organic journey
Following a Permaculture course on the Isle of Man 2008 the decision was made, that when we got back home we would get an allotment with the intention of growing food. Especially herbs and flowers for home use. This venture did not start straight away, as we moved house from Evesham to Abingdon, Oxfordshire.
Text and photos: Sophie Christopher-Bowes
nce we had settled down we then put our name on the mailing list and then waited. But in the mean time read lots in books and did research on the internet. Our window sill in the kitchen came in very handy for growing herbs especially in winter months, we regarded this a small scale miniature ecosystem of which we are the chief wardens. We kept the herbs tidy and healthy, even learning the Latin names of the herbs which also give use a sense of pride and achievement. Months went by and we still did not hear anything from the council about a allotment space. Then in the winter of 2009 we had a call from John that a half plot had come available. Hooary!!! Once the site visit was completed we marked out our plot, with a couple of sticks. The land itself was very over grown and we knew that first we would need to conduct a full site survey. We followed the Permaculture Design consideration that we had learnt on our Permaculture Design course. The consideration were size, security, physical challenges, on site resources, potential catastrophes, plans and drawings, know problems (e.g. local knowledge), level of food self sufficiency required, privacy, water catchment, soil condition, water. Before any work ie. clearing the site could be done we did the following: 1. Information gathering – observation and collecting data this was carried out at different times of the day and during the week and weekends. 2. Analysis phrase – reflecting, examination and collecting data, recognizing patterns. Discussions
about what food we wanted to grow, where would plots be place, where was the sun highest in mid afternoon. 3. Design phase – determining strategies, reorganisizing and placing elements in the system. Zoning and sector planning. This is where we would need to do a design of where we would like to place our shed, polytunnel, compost bin… 4. Management phrase – how are we going to manage it? We had to think about holidays, weekends away, how much time did or could we have for the allotment, festival season, business to run, other commitments. Our allotment was full of weeds but at this stage we had no idea what they were, we also had a lot of clay in more than half of the site, with areas becoming very water logged almost to the point of wellingon boots getting stuck knee deep. We also learnt that the site does flood and has done in the past on a number of occasions, with most people losing their main crops. So we had to start right at the beginning we did not have access to a local map but used the existing landscape features, contours and also looked at what other gardeners had been doing. We knew that we would only grow vegetables and fruit that were organic but also to look at the idea of companion planting. In November on a cold morning we started clearing the site; slowly we dug and dug out weeds
which at a later stage we identified. Couch grass was identified which a persistent and invasive weed. Burying or turning couch grass will not get rid of it, the roots spread and shoots will reappear. Digging the roots of couch grass is HARD work they are dense and bind even the lightest soils. The couch grass grows extremely quickly. We decided to use a non chemical clearance for the couch grass. We cut the site to 2cm high and used a neighbour’s strimmer and also a scythe. We then dug the soil using a fork and not a spade as this helps keep non –rotovated lower roots of the couch grass uncut and easier to remove in long strips. We had to make sure that all of the couch grass had been remove we hand picked this out, pretty back breaking stuff so we made sure that we took plenty of breaks. This method had to be continued over months to make sure that it was all removed. But remember if you already have a garden, allotment or just a small balcony, you can try growing winter lettuce: Mizuna – oriental lettuce with mild flavour. Valdor – large solid hearts puts up with poor weather. Winter Density – sweet and dense, crops in early spring. Winter Marvel – cold resistant. Until the next time…
Where do you get your protein from?
This will strike a chord with many vegans and for that matter vegetarians. You sit eating your dinner at work, or in a restaurant with friends and this question is asked. Indeed when I first announced my decision to become vegan the very first question a colleague asked me with an incredulous look on her face was “Where will you get your protein and calcium from?”
Text: Rebecca Burke
ou could ask the same sort of questions to anybody who chooses to follow a particular lifestyle and way of eating. If somebody embarks on the Atkins diet do people ask them where they get their carbs from? It also insults our intelligence. I can understand if a young child decided to give up meat on a whim or to copy a friend, it would be reasonable to check that child understood what they were doing. But I am an adult my friend! Thirty five years and counting! I have access to books and the internet, I have done my research! I value my health and would never jeopardise it by just cutting out a food group and not bothering to see how I could replace it. That is why I looked into soya products, looked at vitamins and minerals, and also looked around in shops and online to see where I could buy stuff. I do admittedly get annoyed if I see messages on vegan forums that go something like this: “I’ve decided I want to be vegan. I am trying to lose weight and heard it’s healthy, thing is I dunno what I can eat. I really miss burgers and cheese. I’ve only eaten crisps and bread today.” The common misconception is that vegans must live on junk food, chips etc because there is nothing else for them to eat. Hang on a minute! Peruse the aisles of any supermarket – how much of them are occupied by meat and dairy? What about the endless choices in the fresh fruit and vegetable section. The aisles extensively furnished with beans, pulses, nuts, rice, pasta? Many of these are staple foods. If they weren’t designed to sustain people why are they sent over to Africa instead of hotdogs and pizzas? How many meat eaters generally think about the
nutrients they are getting? Do they assume that because they have downed a milkshake and eaten a steak they are healthy in every way? Of course they aren’t. Have they been eating carbohydrates as these are vital to energy. What about fibre? Fibre is essential for the healthy workings of our digestive systems, it can help reduce blood cholesterol studies have shown. It has also been found the average American only consumes 14g fiber a day when the recommended amount is somewhere around 35. Maybe I could turn the line of questioning around on my colleagues next time they ask. Turn that meddling self-righteousness back onto them. Here are some of the questions I could fire at them when they are trying to eat their lunch: “How much fibre was in that greasy Asda Quiche?” “Was there folic acid in that rubbery Chicken Shish?” “Did that bottle of Lambrini contain one of your five a day?” Is it not considered etiquette to actually leave people alone when they try to eat, and live and let live? Or at least to google stuff before asking questions – a simple question typed into a search engine “Other sources of protein than meat” would of saved the Spanish Inquisition would it not? They can’t seem to fathom why you’ve made the transition, some people have become almost irate and overly defensive when I say I’m vegan. Is it guilt? Part of me wants to educate them. To furnish their questions with full responses and enlighten and inform them. The other part of me wants to use sarcasm in my replies. When I am asked “So what do you eat?” I am tempted to reply “Actually nothing. I go without food I am a medical miracle, a freak of nature in every way!” I wonder if perhaps they would actually believe me. When I am at home I cook a wide variety of meals. Rather than being “fussy” as many people would presume I love food! Some meat eaters may turn their noses up at many types of vegetable, there really isn’t a vegetable I don’t like. I enjoy chilli, all herbs and flavourings, all types of rice, pasta,
beans, lentils – hardly fussy at all! I can cook lovely vegan delights in my own home, eat a three course meal with about 10 different types of food in. If I go to a veggie restaurant there is a vast array of choice. All sounds wonderful doesn’t it? Except when I am faced with the family meal situation. Cut to a scene around a table in some Beefeater type restaurant. Nothing on the menu I can have – it’s either steak and chips, chicken and chips, burger and chips, pie and… you get the drift. Yet vegans are seen as not having variety! Major LOL! The confused face of the waitress when I ask if they have anything suitable. If I am lucky then I may get a mixed salad, a bowl of chips or some pasta in tomato sauce. Pasta Neapolitana or whatever other fancy name – pasta in tomato sauce. Others around the table observe this with wry comments and inner thoughts of “Why would she want to choose not to eat meat or dairy look at all the things she’s missing!” Thus perpetuating the myth of the unhealthy, undernourished, odd, sadomasochistic person who has chosen to no longer eat cheesy chips and Dairy Milk. Yet that is not seeing the whole picture is it? If only these people could see me at home! Another way of carrying on the stereotypes of why it’s bad to be vegan is the typical tale of a reformed vegan. Yes… just as irritating as reformed
smokers. The classic story will be “I went vegan once but I got really ill and had to go back to eating meat. In fact my doctor told me to eat some steak to get my iron up and some cheese as my calcium levels were so low.” It makes veganism sound like a risky lifestyle choice one best abandoned at the first sign of ill health. Well pardon me but what the blazes were these people existing on? Tomato ketchup sandwiches?! I am happy to say that since going vegan my health has improved! I feel healthy, my hair is long my nails grow so long I have to file them down. My skin I am told is good and I feel good inside and out. Hardly the picture of a malnourished imp living on spaghetti hoops that y’all carnivores would love to see is it?
I am tired of justifying my lifestyle to anyone. It isn’t even what I call a lifestyle it’s just WHAT I DO! I don’t think about not eating meat or dairy anymore than I think about brushing my teeth it just happens. It really isn’t anyone’s business what I put in my mouth. It has nothing to do with anyone what I eat or why?! So the next time someone looks at me in dopey bewilderment, carcass meat dangling from their confused illinformed lips and barks silly questions at me, I will mimic them and do the same! “What have you got there?!!!!” “What are you eating?” “Eurgh what’s that?!” It’s food – that’s what it is! Healthy, vegan, scream-free food!
1. Melt some cocoa butter…
2. Prepare some cacao butter.
Home made raw choco snacks
How I made my first raw chocolate with lucuma, cocoa butter, coffee beans, hemp and pollen granules. Text and photos: Ishai Silencio
4. Get some natural honey, still in it’s comb.
3. Cut the cacao butter so it melts easier. 5. Cut the honey so it melts easier with the cocoa and cacao butter.
6. Mix the honey and bees wax in the partly melted cocoa and cacao butter.
7. Add some natural vanilla by preference. 10. Shelled hemp seeds.
8. Add some cocoa flower nectar powder. As much as you want the chocolate sweet. 9. This is too much hemp seeds. The liquid chocolate did not fix it all. Next time I wil use less.
11. Put three coffee beans in each. In addition to the coffee beans, I want to use organic instant coffee powder in the chocolate next time.
12. Prepare the molds. 15. Lots of lucuma powder.
13. You actually get 500g organically grown whole coffee beans in some stores. 14. Coffee beans and flower pollen granules. Here I put too much pollen granules. The chocolate did not stick to all of it.
16. Even more cacao powder, the raw one.
19. Not surprising, it tastes wonderful!!! :-) 20. The author.
17. I used a small spoon and a kind of butter knife to enter the thick masses into the mold. 18. If you are a beginner like me, you will most likely have ,“beginner’s luck” and make a perfect amount to fit the molds you have prepared.
How lucky we are to have tumbled on being vegan in this lifetime! What a blessing to avoid imbibing & swallowing all that pain & sadness! – although there is still my consumption of products organic but tahini, millet from China, rice from Basmati…
Text: Sarah 2
have long been trying to avoid food miles & grow some of my own food, & to plant fruit trees for the future. I’ve also planted, & they’ve grown quite big now over several years, hedges with a variety of fruit & flowers for insects & birds & shelter for the wild animals & reptiles, which are all part of the multicultural way nature functions – multifaceted complex ways of wonder – which we have only started to see, blinded by our arrogance & fears. Last week I went to Foix to the yearly ‘Résistances’ film festival & gliding around seeing familiar stalls & noticing what was absent also & how publicity was a little more shiny & less interesting, I landed on the esperanto stall, & a little corner was given over to vegan animal rights tracts! And someone started to explain to me about not eating fish… a nice surprise as recently I’ve not met any new vegans! Our conversation meandered around languages & esperanto & then he asked about my interests. I found it hard to give my whole life story (I’m 66) in 5 mins, & I felt he was disappointed in me for not supporting any ‘causes’; & since I was low in energy – very tired from eating too late the evening before & overexertion from yoga & gardenwork & not sleeping at night because of heavy thundery atmosphere – I was incapable of anything sensible & just rabbiting on to keep awake!!! I felt he was quite annoyed with me which I found upsetting, although I’m used to people finding me uncomfortable in some way or another. Now I feel grateful to that man for making me feel uncomfortable & pushing me to confront my doubts about what I’m doing now & giving me the opportunity to clarify what I am really trying to do with my life. What I am doing is loving my house which is old,
tall & small, & sandwiched between my two – neighbours’ houses in a little village. I’ve been constantly having walls down, chimneys off, solar waterheating panels fixed on roof, lime rendering, lime wash, a new wood floor etc, etc. What my ‘cause’ is, is probably ‘planting fruit trees for the future’ – i think of it as my work – & growing food. All this with a minimum of machines & maximum of observing how nature works – & trying to fit in without too much ugliness. Vegan-organic of course, with mulching & no-dig methods. My field is 3 acres & 3km from my house so I usually drive over – often needing to take the pump & other things. Somehow I’ve ended up living my life fairly in public – as my neighbours’ windows all overlook my garden at the back of the house. It is very shady as north-facing & surrounded by tall terraced
can hear people chatting as they cycle past & passing cars beep from time to time, yet they’re all a long way away. The field runs 300m back down to the river where there are sometimes fishers or dog walkers… There are 2 sizeable wild patches separating three parts that are cut 2 or 3 times a year by me with my scissor scythe machines that I push around that require several visits to the machine workshop in Pamiers 25 km away for fixing and parts. At each side there are poisonous agriculture fields of maize or sunflowers. There are apple, cherry, peach, apricot, quince, pear, plum, persimmon, walnut, hazelnut & fig trees & some strawberries, raspberries, gooseberrries, black & red currants many of which are suffering over the encroaching drought & other effects of our massive misuse or misunderstanding of nature & my own particular shortcomings or mistakes!! The trees are interspersed with lots of lavender, sage & tansy clumps & patches of flowers & green manures: phacelia, buckwheat, sainfoin, mustard, lucerne, clover, vetch… So, being vegan for me involves trying to grow fruit & grains & veg locally & avoiding food miles; not eating sugar & feeling so lucky not to eat meat, fish, honey, or dairy products. I feel good especially when I don’t eat too much (too rarely) & do a bit of work in the field (quite often). I enjoy not wearing wool, leather or silk. I do not want to “own” any pets now (though I did have 2 cats for 16 years earlier in my life who were very close to me!! And I have very good friends who have animals!!) I prefer for animals to be free… From my childhood I hated & feared bird cages or rabbit hutches, mice cages, chicken runs all that wire netting. I think probably what I do in my life is please myself – sometimes quite a hard task – but that is no doubt the best I can do… sometimes this feels lonely or difficult, but I find it’s full of unexpected help from nature spirits and flower faires & angels. And it’s not just eating of course which is at issue: • In the field – people not familiar with no dig. • No manure, no smoking. • No fences, but using prickly branches from the hedge around the trees & vegetable beds, to try to
neighbours houses & a high wall with bamboo all along. Right ouside the back door is a very tall hazel tree, & for a month or so, when they are ready, the nuts fall & it’s a favorite 2 or 3 times-aday occupation for me picking them up! There are also little pear trees & a fig tree which produce some delicious fruit. Next door there is a 400 year old yew tree which sheds leaves & berries every now & then and provides a wonderful sanctuary for birds… All this in spite of being the 6.th year of advancing drought (very low rainfall) and drastic climate changes with odd plant growth… The field is also public, at one end bordered by the small road which is the main thoroughfare. People sometimes mention seeing me out there when they pass, or seeing a women working out there, not realising it was me. The road runs alongside the field for 50m and just above it, and I
protect them from deer, wild boar, rabbits, dogs, humans or other animals. • Always consulting the biodymamic lunar calendar (Thun) and the other lunar calendar for sewing, planting & all activities. Keeping the rainwater which runs off the shed clean by siphoning the water out of the 2 butts regularly, & cleaning with a little ‘purifitout’ essential-oil cleaning liquid, & by not washing hands directly in the butts… AND Trying to have faith & deal with my fears & letting some trees die (nature’s ways are multifarious) doing things with love (for oneself first), & at a time which happens well – gardens are magic places which are always packed with lovely surprises – they are always there for us – the ‘weeds’ too! Such variety of textures & forms & ways of growing from roots up & along & through & round thrusting & spinning, sprouting & shooting, flowering, seeding & disappearing again. I tread carefully with people in this meat-eating non-ecological world… now for instance there are apples falling before they’re ripe, windfalls & unripe apples half eaten by birds etc, which a friend welcomes to feed her rabbits but which I avoid giving to her as I find keeping animals in cages very offensive so abhorrent that I cannot say this (waiting for the person herself to make the connection) how can people love animals & cage them, kill them & eat them? A very wonderful book was published in France at the end of 2009: “Bidoche – l’Industrie de la Viande Menace le Monde” by Fabrice Nicolino. This might translate as “Meat (in the vernacular) –
the Meat Industry Threatens the Earth”. For me a veritable miracle! Written by a not quite vegan & yet more vegan than almost all the vegans that I know, it’s a very daring exposé of shocking truths. This was soundly backed up by Fabrice’s participating in radio discussions, & appearances on TV, & twittering & articles in magazines. – All this made me feel more comfortable in myself, putting back these meat & milk habitués into their rightful place, & showing all the evils of the worldwide agriculture industry & the ill health & insanity & the mega proportions of the nightmare on this small planet. It is extraordinarily well written & easy to read & is a sign of changing times where vegans are taken more seriously & many people are changing attitudes to food & agriculture, while the powers-that-be are mega-invasive of our lives & thinking. So there are big changes in awareness & so now if we can command more respect for vegan-ness & real ecology how do I set about finding more ways of deserving it, & changing myself… I am quite often concerned about the difficulties of communication & the lack of company in my deliciously vegan life. However on a good day, when I feel so grateful for all the friends & neighbours I have here, I am less bothered by these differences in lifestyle. As I get older I find it easier to be grumpy about the world & feed in some info to non-vegan friends. I think quite often one may say things strongly or gently or comically or dramatically, or any way you like, & people will think about it, but we will not necessarily ever know. Daring to just BE whoever we are, & vegan organic is a big part of this every day, does communicate in the best way leaving people to find there own ways to this lightness.
It’s hard work living & visiting with nonvegans! It’s hard work life in general! – As we are all very different (& interesting). The more we can love ourselves (not always easy), the better we can appreciate others. I think it’s of prime importance to please oneself under all circumstances. Often one cannot predict any consequences – just go with each moment – make all our mistakes – do whatever we feel we can & appreciate our own nature & its peculiarities. It’s also hard work with other vegans! – Although they have more chance of realising what we’re on about of course!!!
Typed and edited by: Knut Caspari and Polly Buttons
Vegan Views started life in 1975. On the following pages you will find articles reprinted from the first and second issue. In the next issue you will find another batch of articles. Some may feel that reprinting out-of-date articles is a waste of paper, but I happen to think they still have value. If you agree, you are welcome to help by typing. Just let me know. Knut Caspari
Veganism – a personal view
Veganism is essentially a reaction to certain negative aspects of society, and there would be no more need for a Vegan Society in a vegan world than there is need for a Society of NonCannibals at present. But veganism doesn’t provide the complete answer to all that is negative in ourselves and society and is but one component of the complete reaction that is needed. It must be remembered that I am considering only the negative aspects of us and society and I am not denying the goodness and beauty that exists in the world and which should be affirmed.
Text: James Okell Reprinted from issue 1 of Vegan Views, 1975.
he Vegan Society performs invaluable functions, especially in dissimulating information, and I would not wish to belittle the efforts of those individuals who give such great service: it is having the ‘proper’ attitude to veganism that I consider so important and how much time and effort one gives to the Society is a personal decision dependent on valid but differing individual characteristics. To work wholeheartedly for veganism, or any other worthwhile cause, is one thing, to crusade veganism as if veganism were the answer to all of the world’s problems and as if vegans are particularly enlightened generally, compared with the rest of the human race is something else. By some quirk of fate, vegans have recognised the validity of the vegan ethic, but how many other great ‘Truths’ have many of us not recognised? Many non-vegans have literally and selflessly given their lives for their fellow humans. Most of us, as vegans, are living materially comfortable lives on a planet where half the human population starve and millions suffer unspeakable agonies at the hand of other people. How much do we care? What would we be prepared to die for? The distant suffering in other parts of the world (and even here in Britain) may seem beyond our responsibility, yet I believe that imbedded in the structures of our British society, and, ultimately, embedded in our individual personalities, are those
factors which cause the horrors of the world. In so much as we support and perpetuate our society as it is (through our work, relationships, possessions etc.) and in so much as our society helps as a nation to perpetuate, on an international scale, the present state of the world, we are responsible for the horrors of this world. To be normal citizens, (except for being vegans!) to respect the laws and institutions of this immoral society for the sake of our mental and physical security and comfort – is to be accomplices in the perpetration of the horrors of the world. Our first responsibility is not to animals, not even to fellow humans, but to ourselves. The revolution in attitudes that the world needs must begin with us. As R.D. Laing wrote: “We are bemused and crazed creatures, strangers to our true selves, to one another, and to the spiritual and material world – mad, even from an ideal standpoint we can glimpse but not adopt”. We should seek first to understand and discover ourselves and to do this we must realise that we are conditioned creatures, conditioned by the customs, traditions, habits, roles, rules, taboos, etc, of this society, and we must negate these things when they are not in accord with what we know, feel, and can ascertain for ourselves. Ultimately we can only ‘know’ anything for ourselves and not by following blindly the dictates of others. “To be nobody-but-myself – in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else – means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight, and never stop fighting” says E. E. Cummings. Only by understanding ourselves and being ourselves can we love ourselves; and, as is well known, if we don’t love ourselves we can’t love others. I would suggest that vegans try not to label and identify themselves specifically as ‘vegans’. To see ourselves as peculiarly different from the rest of the human race, purely because of our diet etc is different (important as this is), and to empathise this difference by the conspicuous use of an appropriate label can only be a divisive strategy, as are the use of so many other labels by which people see the status, class and economic-value rankings
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of themselves and others in this divisive society. First and foremost, we are humans – not vegans. I would further suggest that as individuals we are most likely to influence other people, with respect to veganism, not by self-righteously trying to ram it down their throats, but by gaining their affection and respect for our whole selves as people. If we’re not likable people we can hardly expect non-vegans to take our vegan attitudes seriously. We can only be likable people through understanding ourselves and opening ourselves and our weaknesses up to others. The more open vegan meetings are to outsiders, and the more that outsiders get to know
vegans as a group, then (if vegans are generally worth knowing!) the more likely that outsiders will take veganism seriously.
But I would finally suggest, on the same note as I began, that ‘veganism’ is not a suitable banner under which to attack the whole world ‘problem’. Perhaps individuals, who might happen to be vegan but are also committed to their own necessary revolution and in their relationships to others will group together to form an alternative society (or community) which attempts to discover a better way of living which encompasses veganism but much, much more.
A new form of society
Veganism directs one’s attention towards basic foods as opposed to the incorrect feeding patterns of modern society.
Text: Harry Mather Reprinted from issue 1 of Vegan Views, 1975.
or this reason vegans are drawn away from the sophistication of urban living and towards the country and agriculture. Many of us feel we want to get away from the stress of the rat race of conformity and to find out true selves in a struggle for self-sufficiency. But self-sufficiency is unlikely to prove to be Eden. It is more likely, at least temporarily, to be a cold, dark and hungry existence, a hard school of experience and above all, lonely. Veganism should provide an answer to the problems facing present day mankind without necessarily going back to a grim struggle with nature. On the other hand, we have the ridiculous workings of the modern economy where apples are dear because they are transported from distant places, when in fact we could grow them for free in our gardens with less trouble than we lavish on house plants. Again many neglect the upkeep of the house they live in because it is not their property. The last few years have proved that modern society is aimed in the wrong direction with wars, inflation,
violent strikes, petrol crisis’s, cars destroying our cities and so on. The answer can only lie in a form of society where the individual will find happiness and pride in supplying most of their basic needs and in recognising their duties as well as their rights. As I see it, each family should acquire the necessary knowledge; devote enough labour and skill to provide at least a part of its basic needs for food, housing, fuel and clothing. There should be a basis of self-sufficiency but not necessarily doing it all one’s self. We could live in small communities where sick and aged would be taken care of by their neighbours (not an impersonal state). The community would be aiming to live in accordance to standards of ecology and beauty rather than measuring all effort in terms of cash. Solar energy, wind and water power would be used to provide amenities. Simple scientific studies would surely evolve a lifestyle suitable for contemporary humans rather than some heroic Robinson Crusoe.
This form of society would need truly democratic citizens, conducting their lives, not by the increasingly complex regulations of the present state, but genuinely observing the central law of respect for one’s neighbour and all creation and doing what they feel to be right as against the selfish ideal of doing what one can get away with. We need a change of heart in the individual and also an environment which will foster this new attitude of mind.
Vegan Views reprinted
We hear a lot, and see a lot of ‘organically grown’ food. This is obviously preferably to chemically grown and sprayed non-food.
Text: Ann Shepherd Reprinted from issue 1 of Vegan Views, 1975.
away with it? The main objection to this revolutionary notion is that the winter day should be so short – but then winter is the time for resting, renewal – in preparation for the long busy days of summer. Meanwhile, for the ills that afflict perverse homo-sapiens… Hidden evils As a vegan, I avoid the use of articles, food, materials derived from slaughter or exploitation of animals – wool, leather, bone, ivory, skin, fur … fine. But two points worry me. First, so often I run up against ignorance, my own and others – I don’t know what things are made of! Secondly – the alternatives available in, for example footwear seem to be largely plastics – which are not only unhealthy and uncomfortable and aesthetically unpleasing – but also polluting – and pollution entails the destruction of the environment – including plants, other animals (not to mention ourselves). And what about batteries, petrol, paraffin, candles, electricity…? Avoiding such materials – animal derived and polluting – entails the loss of many otherwise enjoyable objects and activities for which it is important to find alternative materials and methods of production. Trees The use of wood, though aesthetically and ethically preferable to many other materials in many ways, entails the destruction of trees – which are more useful, for a start, if they are left in the ground. So should we not be exploring possibilities of expanding the use of stone and other minerals for building or as in flints in place of matches? What else? Futher on “foreign plants” At one time, linen was used exclusively in this country for making articles which are now made of cotton – hence the term, still in used ‘bed-linen’. The term linen was used to refer to household drapery, cloths, sheets and underclothes. There seems to be a need to renew the cultivation of flax. Is this possible, or has the climate changed or what? For more info, visitt: www.veganorganic.net
ut this term ‘organic’ includes the use of blood, bone-meal and slaughterhouse offal. Is there any system by which veganically grown food may be distinguished? If not would growers marketing their produce make this clear? Herbs When I buy herbs I am usually offered herbs grown in other countries – and understandably costly. There is obviously an opening here for herb growers, wild herb gatherers. I’ve been told that people in England can’t be bothered to gather herbs. Yet there are herbs growing all other the countryside. When I was a child during the war, I was taken out gathering hips and haws… Food in season If all food were bought and eaten only in season, we would be healthier, more content, have more fun (it’s so nice looking forward to apples and pears in the autumn instead of eating them almost mechanically all year around) and we’d be spending less money. Last week I was offered in a wholefood shop, tomatoes, baby marrows and broad beans from Cyprus! What is in season in the Mediterranean is not in Britain. Indiginous food I feel strongly (and, incidentally, am supported by certain macrobiotic teachers) that one should only eat food which is indigenous to one’s own place of origin – other animal’s tend to suffer ill health and even death if fed ‘foreign’ food (e.g. pandas). Natural living patterns Other animals fit their living patterns to natural cycles – diurnal creatures of which man is one, rise with the sun and retire with the sun. What makes us think we can step out of line, and stay out, and get
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Thoughts on low-impact living
During the early history of man, the communal need for protection gave rise to semi-urbanised communities which later developed into legislated social structures – cities as we know them today. What needs communal protection now is the environment and non-renewable resources.
Text: Lawrie Corbett Reprinted from issue 2 of Vegan Views, 1975.
have been attending an interesting course entitled “Low-impact living”. The purpose of this course was to show how low-impact (i.e. low energy consumption) living could be implemented on a personal level and to provide a layman’s introduction to alternative technology. The lectures commenced with an outline of the problem and continued with talks on solar energy, alternative materials, organic gardening, wind power, cycling, and alternative medicine and methane digesters.
As the course progressed, it reinforced my feelings that only by the adoption of more communitarian feeling in our cities, of more community-based alternative technology projects; of more self-reliance will we be able to free ourselves from the pressures and the oppression of urbanisation and an unthinking, energy-dependant industrial society. For example, let us consider food production. The process of urbanisation has concentrated people around pockets of energy or raw materials and away from the sources of food. The result is that an urban community can only exist if it is furnished with a distribution system backed up by a storage system supplied by a delivery service using standardised (hence factory-processed) products. The energy consumed in this chain of events is not likely to be much reduced by the exhortations of the Department of Energy and energy-saving regulations. Continued on next page
Vegan Views reprinted
The vegan way-of-life, with its emphasis on home-grown produce, is clearly an important part of low-impact living. If the bonds between members of the vegan community existed in the community at large, there would be little difficulty in persuading neighbours to cooperatively work their gardens. There would then be much less demand for processed foods, with the corresponding reduction in energy consumption. There would also be sufficient output of quality foods to allow rejection of inferior material and there would be no marketing organisation to confuse the buyer: a situation which incidentally,
existed in the Middle ages. The adoption of community-based alternative technology would share out the cost of any raw materials for solar heaters or wind-generators and provide sufficient area for the production of food and energy crops for human consumption and methane digesters respectively.
It is hard to say how far this course has changed the consciousness of the participants, but we hope to pursue some aspects of what we have learnt through whole-food cookery classes, a whole-food co-op and workshops in solar energy and wind power.
When we think “food”, most of us are concerned with filling our stomachs because otherwise we get hungry, and that’s not too pleasant! Few of us are really hedonistic to the point of choosing our meal contents for their particularly exotic or subtle savoury taste – perhaps simply enough because we usually do not have the economic means to supply us with the palatable things, or perhaps not the time to prepare them properly – yet most of us are food-conscious and have our preferences.
bundle of it. Nuclear fission attempts to release that energy from its atomic form. Atoms in combination make molecules. Molecules in combination make chemical compounds. Chemical compounds in combination make up cells… bodies (when DNA is present)! We, in so far as our bodies are concerned, are energy, so in effect we eat what we are. When we eat an animal we eat the essence of that animal’s body. An animal is heavily motivated by
Text: Veran Van Dam Reprinted from issue 2 of Vegan Views, 1975.
Essentially one could classify foods as follows, from fine to gross or heavy: 1 – Vital energy as “prana” which is to be found in the air, sunshine, clean fresh water and in foods generally. 2 – Fruit and fruit juices. 3 – Grains, greek vegetables and branch nuts. 4 – Ground nuts and root vegetables. 5 – Milk and milk derivatives. 6 – Eggs. 7 – Meat.
he body, however, is less concerned with taste-bud thrills as it is with the acquisition of the energy it needs for survival, for deep down inside our genetic make-up is a particular message which reads, “if me (the body) wishes to continue functioning as an active viable vehicle I MUST GET ENERGY”. This it does by converting the food it digests into adenosine triphosphate, which is the essential chemical-energy link before the food is properly broken down into its chemical constituents and the finer material which is eventually is integrated by the body cells, used or stored according to need. Energy – we have isolated what truly matters. Energy as we all (should) know is universal since every single atom in itself is nothing more than a
Vegan Views reprinted
its instincts, action-reaction, day-to-day struggle to keep alive in the wild, and though much of that inherent (DNA coded message) impulse is less noticeable in domesticated animals, it persists. Anyone who has been inside an active slaughterhouse will properly have noticed that somehow the animals to be killed are apprehensive. Something deep down inside is bringing up the survival message in reaction to its instinctively perceived “notice of death”. The animal’s bodies are conditioned with that apprehension and fear before they are killed. We then eat their fear, as well as the animal’s flesh. It conditions us in turn. We tend to fear… things, people. We war because of our fears (not to mention our greed and fundamental stupidity). We inherit karma from the animals we have slain and suffer in return, perhaps by experiencing a continual fear of death ourselves. In effect we get what we deserve. In the East the wise men of past understood the above and other matters related to animal-food consumption and remained sanely vegetarian or what we now call vegan. Plants do not react to their death in the same
way animals do. Their emotional equipment is sensitive but not as survival-conscious as that of animals. The plant registers its dismissal as a brief electrical shock. Some people talk to their plants to diminish this shock. This is very powerful when sincerely and lovingly used, therefore the notion of talking or thinking to plants before killing them to soften the blow is less farcical than it may otherwise seem. The food-value of plants is superior to that of animals from the point of view of flowing vitality of a relatively refined nature. Animal food is more conditioned by emotions etc as we have previously seen. A meat-eater tends to be violent and aggressive, have a higher blood pressure and is more prone to heart attacks amongst a number of other things. A plant-eater is more passive, serene, meditative, all of which help bring about a higher awareness of life and a finer response to external and internal pressures and activity.
If we are to transcend our shameful warridden, pain-bearing past it might just pay off to consider just what sort of quality of energy we put into our mouths next time we reach for food.
View to action
With many scientists, publications, church and environmental groups at long last putting forward the view that valuable foodstuffs are being lost through the practice of feeding grains to livestock and recommending changes in the average diet to include more primary food, I feel that the time is ripe for as many vegans as possible to make their presence felt within their local communities to show that a society if already in existence which can offer advice and proof that a diet free from animal produce is quite feasible.
by allowing anyone with whom contact is made to see that a normal life can be led with the minimum of fuss, I believe that it is our duty to present the facts about veganism as wide a range of the public as possible to allow individuals to be aware of alternatives to their normal way of life. In doing so it is totally unnecessary to act in a forceful manner but it is better to confine any efforts to a presentation of facts in an unemotional and non-righteous manner with the emphasis being on allowing the person in question to make up their own mind.
Possibilities for action could be an occasional stall in a market with literature and examples of food, a mini street survey to ascertain people’s knowledge of veganism, leafleting, joining groups such as War on Want and Oxfam and quietly putting over your views, and finally correspondence in local papers.
Text: Keith Bryan Reprinted from issue 1 of Vegan Views, 1975.
lthough I realise that many vegans are of the opinion that the best way of spreading knowledge of their beliefs is
Vegan Views reprinted
Draft aims of a community
I have come to visualise a new mode of living, where the criterion is not “What can I get out of life?” but “What can I put into life?” and where the individual, necessarily carrying the whole world – according to his experience and perception of it – in his own mind, is nevertheless aware that neither he in particular nor man in general is the centre if the universe or the end-all and be-all of creation.
supporting community producing food and commodities in accordance with veganic principles.
Rescue and rehabilitation
To receive and absorb much needy persons or animals that may seek sanctuary in the community e.g. orphans, wounded wildlife.
Text: Ruth Howard Reprinted from issue 2 of Vegan Views, 1975.
n this realisation the individual begins to live objectively in sympathy with the rest of the world rather than in conflict with it. Thus he becomes “of the world” by general relationship and “earthman” by specific relationship. He is “with it” in the highest possible sense, and, to coin a Greek word, a “Cosmopolite”. An intending community of Cosmopolites might like to consider the following draft aims:
To improve health and happiness by demonstrating and teaching the adoption of a natural “ahimsa” diet and treatment on drugless lines.
To create an environment minimising emotional tension and mental strain, with non-mechanical psychiatry.
To educate community children according to individual capabilities and provide education opportunities for all.
To work out the principle of “Ahimsa” so far as practicable, recognising that while vegetable life with few exceptions is supported by lifeless matter, animal life is supported by other forms of life.
To demonstrate the unity of the human race by absorbing people of all races and nationalities.
Conservation and bio-ecology
To enable the individual to develop full through the seven social (psychic) spheres (self, family, neighbourhood, country, earth, universe, infinity) by providing means for self-realisation and expression in service of humanity, with respect for the rest of the world.
To enrich the earth by practising and fostering soil fertility, afforestation, water conservation, flora fauna preservation, anti-pollution etc.
To afford ideals and projects to which realisation the individual can dedicate himself without losing his identity in an enormous society nor his material wealth in taxes devoted to wasteful/destructive policies.
Horticulture and crafts
To undertake any practicable research in connection with problems met within the community, e.g. acclimatising exotic food plants, diet trials, educational trials.
To sponsor cosmopolite groups forming nuclei for similar communities abroad, particularly to tackle land impoverishment, deficiency disease, poverty etc.
To demonstrate the viability of a largely self-
Vegan Views reprinted
To promote outside contact rather than isolation in an idyllic setting, so that the ahimsa way of life and its benefits may be known, by visits, newsletters, leaflets etc.
To pay all outgoings e.g. mortgage repayment, seeds, services, from the wealth of the community.
To support or affiliate to such bodies as promote ideals of the cosmopolite community, e.g. Vegan Society, and to send delegates to such bodies.
Deployment of labour
To sell goods/services as far as basically compatible with its principles of ahimsa living and to use any monies in hand after payment of all expenses and debts for any special needs of members or extension work as may be approved.
To apportion community labour and duties to members according to individual abilities e.g. gardening, carpentry, diet, healthy, advice, secretary-ship, dressmaking, decorating, and to divide menial tasks among members.
To foster individual independence from external political religious ties and pressures.
To study and debate all matters of the functioning of the community, voting only when urgent decisions are needed.
To encourage altruistic actions by members rather than to impose discipline, to achieve harmonious relationships in accordance with the teaching, “love fulfilleth the law”.
Having been born and bred within the confines of a large city it was with some trepidation that I left the security of the tarmac road and stepped reverently onto the moorland but with every step that I took from that moment on I became more and more liberated as the wind took me into its arms and hurried me along.
Text: Keith Bryan Reprinted from issue 2 of Vegan Views, 1975.
he very ground upon which I tread seemed to impart a feeling of friendliness and where a few minutes earlier I had had feelings of fear of the harsh landscape it now seemed as if I had never known anything else. As I progressed, my thoughts turned to those upon whom the opportunity to experience such natural beauty had never fallen and a wave of despair washed over me. Was the answer for me to desert such people and turn back to the land where
I could be at one with Nature or to bear the trials and tribulations of a forced existence in a built-up area in an attempt to explain to the inhabitants that theirs needn’t be the only lifestyle? Was my consideration of the idea merely because I felt the need to escape from the uniformity of life and if so was this sufficient reason. Should I not be working to bring about changes within cities by encouraging recycling activities, more growth of food etc. If I left my present circumstances behind would I cut myself off completely and forget that the outside world existed and if so would this be a selfish action, or would the very act of showing who ever cared to look at alternative ways of living existed be a different excuse for a free conscience. Should I at intervals return to the big wide world outside and inform people of my activities.
Feeling now in a very confused state I threw myself into my surroundings and allowed the wind to cleanse my mind for a few delightful moments.
Vegan Views reprinted
Norwegian books for sale
av Michael G. Smith handler om bygging av jordhus. Boken veileder nybyggeren gjennom alle stadiene i å bygge et naturlig hjem. Boken er på 146 sider og koster 198 kr inkl. porto. ISBN-nr: 978-82-92316-245.
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«…mitt hjem av jord og hamp» av Teresa
av jord og hamp! Slik bygget jeg et
Berubé handler om bygging av jordhus. Heftet er på 36 sider i A5-format og koster 48 kr inkl. porto. ISBNnummer er: 82-9231608-6.
«Gutten på bomullsfarmen» av Merritt
Bygg med ved!
håndbok i kompostering av menneskegjødsel. Boken er på 112 sider og koster 225 kr inkl. porto. ISBN-nr. er: 978-82-92316-221.
«Bygg din egen jordovn!» av Kiko
BYGG DIN EGEN
Denzer beskriver hvordan du kan bygge en bakerovn av leirejord. Boken er på 128 sider i A5-format og koster 200 kr inkludert porto. ISBN-nummeret er: 82-92316-01-9.
Mauzey er en barnebok om bomullsdyrking på 1900-tallet. Boken er på 96 sider i A5-format og koster 160 kr inkludert porto. ISBN-nummeret er: 8292316-02-7.
«Bygg med ved!» av
GUTTEN PÅ BOMULLSFARMEN
Rob Roy inneholder 60 bilder om kubbehuset han bor i. Heftet er på 40 sider i A5-format og koster 25 kr inkl. porto. ISBN-nr: 8292316-03-5.
Slik kan bøkene kjøpes:
På motsatt side finner du boklisten til Stiftelsen Markens Grøde. Hvis noen av bøkene faller i smak, gjør du lurt i å kjøpe de. Vil du ta bøkene i nærmere øyesyn, kan du oppsøke gardsbutikken til Sogn Jord- og Hagebruksskule, da de har alle bøkene på lager.
Abonner på Non-Vegan!
Food • Health • Low impact living • Self-Sufficiency
The semi-vegan er et engelsk språkelig tidsskrift. (Som du holder i hånda!) Er en blanding av Sjølberger´n og Vegan Views. Støtt prosjektet ved å abonnere for kun 75 kr for 2 nummer.
Overfør rett beløp til bankkonto: Send kupongen til:
0530 30 49616 (Konto-eier: Stiftelsen Markens Grøde)
Stiftelsen Markens Grøde, c/o Caspari, Sogns veien 4, 0451 Oslo.
«Vegan Views» er en todelt bok på 224 sider. Første del er vegansk, mens siste del omhandler sjølberging. Boken koster: 100 kr inkl. porto!
Under følger Stiftelsen Markens Grødes bokliste. Alle prisene inkluderer porto! Ønsker du noe så vennligst sett kryss ved det du ønsker.
Abonnement på “The semi-vegan!” 2 nummer for 75 kr. (Nummer 2-3) Bøker og hefter: (Alle prisene inkluderer porto!) «Bygg ditt eget jordhus!» av Michael G. Smith for 198 kr. «Det enkle og gode liv» av Helen og Scott Nearing for 200 kr. «Bygg din egen jordovn!» av Kiko Denzer for 200 kr. «Kunsten å gå på do…» av Joseph Jenkins for 225 kr. «Slik bygget jeg mitt hjem av jord og hamp!» av Teresa Berubé for 48 kr. «Bygg ditt eget kubbehus!» av Tony Wrench for 148 kr. «Bygg med ved!» av Rob Roy for 25 kr. «Melk og honning» av John Seymour for 150 kr. «Gutten på bomullsgården» av Merritt Mauzey for 160 kr. «Bygg din egen husvogn!» av Walter Lloyd for 68 kr. «Vegan Views/Self-sufficiency» bok på 224 sider: 100 kr. Mitt navn: Min adresse: Mitt postnr./poststed: Fast telefon: (Dag/kveld) Send kupongen til: Caspari, Sognsveien 4, 0451 Oslo. E-post: firstname.lastname@example.org
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Food • Health • Low impact living • Self-Sufficiency
Text: Knut Caspari
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What is morality?
Most of us, from an early age, are taught what is “right” and what is “wrong” by our parents, by society and, to a certain extent, by our consciences.
Text: Malcolm Horne Reprinted from issue 2 of Vegan Views, 1975.
nd, for most of us, our moral standards are neither particularly high nor low – they are simply those ingrained into us by our immediate culture. To the extent that it is possible to escape from this cultural backdrop some people go beyond the standards imposed on them by law and society and set themselves strict moral codes which few others either ask or expect them to live up to. Vegetarianism is a very obvious example, pacifism is another. But what constitutes a “moral” person? If this question is thoroughly examined, I think it can be seen that morality is very much a relative concept and that no absolute ethical standards do in fact exist. The orthodox religionist might well take objection to this statement and indeed quite a few other people might as well! However, average standards of morality vary greatly in relationship to place and time, and, in general, these standards depend on the degree of civilisation a particular society has evolved to. The practices of one section of people at one particular time, e.g. cannibalism or slavery may seem barbaric to us, but, just because we have evolved beyond this, are we justified in calling these practices “evil” when, perhaps the participators in the “evil” simply knew no better? We may certainly say that it is better to live peacefully and humanely, with due regard to fellow humans and all living creatures, but this may be as far as we can take it. The responsibility for moral evolution lies not so much with society but mainly with the individual. To quote Gurdjieff “Conversations about morality are simply empty talk. Your aim is inner morality.” It should be clear that the lack of any absolute morality is not a licence for us to behave in any manner we please. On the contrary, within the framework and conventional limits of a human
community there are clear distinctions between good and evil. But “these disappear when human affairs are seen as part and parcel of the whole realm of nature”. A good analogy to this principle is “within this room there is a clear difference between up and down; out interstellar space there is not”. Clearly this question of morality cannot be set aside from religion. Christians have for long been troubled at the amount of apparent evil God “allows”. They generally answer this, somewhat unconvincingly, by stating that God has given man free-will and that it is man, not God, which has sinned. I don’t find this view at all tenable and it makes more sense to accept that “God’s universe contains the built-in realities of physical and moral evil”. The writer of this, Dom Aelred Graham, is a Benedictine monk and I think one can also find sense in his statement that “good is good and bad is bad, but both – and as is usually the case, a more or less subtle combination of each – have their place, like the entire range of colours in the visible spectrum of God’s scheme of things”. Is this enlightened Christianity?! Like most religions, Christianity undoubtedly contains truth at its heart but, in order to get to that heart, one has to survive the onslaught of “thou shalt”and “thou shalt not”! Of course, one may take the view that the universe is pure chaos. A coming together of random elements but that doesn’t dive any grounds for an absolute morality either! If there is a meaning to our existence is it not reasonable to suggest that the evil and the suffering that each of us has to experience is in some way necessary to our development and growth of understanding? Eventually we may perceive the truth which, proverbially, lies “beyond good and evil”.
Veganism is clearly a more humane way of life than flesh-eating but can we say that people are “wrong” to exploit animals and that such behaviour is “evil” when the participants in these practices, perhaps do not know any better? Even amongst vegetarians there is probably still much violence of mind and action and our behaviour, in turn, may appear barbaric to more evolved societies.
Vegan Views reprinted
London animal charities fair
The “London Animal Charities Fair” has been running for 38 years. It was previously been held at Kensington Town Hall.
hunt. (Goodie bags for all who complete!) Our wonderful vegan cafe, this year run by “The Loving Hut”, will serve hot and cold food, plus cakes, tea and coffee.
Talks and workshops from:
Text and photos: Liz Mackenzie
ver the years it has helped many animal welfare organisations raise much needed funds, and has provided a good day of shopping, socialising and information gathering. Approx 40 stalls representing lots of wonderful organisations helping animals in the UK and Worldwide.
Date: Sunday 6th November 2011. 10am – 4pm.
• Sea Shepherd • Stop Puppy Farming End the Cruelty • Care for the Wild • Animal Defenders International (more to be confirmed) Come along for a great day out!
The Camden Centre, London WC1H 9LZ.
Admission charge: £2 (Accompanied children: free)
No better way to buy gifts and support some amazing animal charities and organisations at the same time.
Web site: www.animalcharitiesfair.org.uk
Children’s activity area plus information treasure
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