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Tag Archives: animals

The Mindful Meat Movement

By: Elizabeth Millard

When Upton Sinclair wrote “The Jungle” in 1906, readers were exposed to the horrible abuse of those who worked in the meat-packing industry. The book changed how the country thought about food safety and sparked considerable shifts in inspections and labor practices, shaping laws for the last century. Now, it seems that we’re increasingly turning our attention to the other major component of the industry: the animals themselves. Despite the shock-and-awe campaigns of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (which occasionally uses naked women to encourage vegetarianism), ours is a country rife with meat eaters. Health pronouncements about eating less red meat have had some effect, and “meatless Monday” is catching on in many areas, but on the whole, the United States is a paradise for omnivores.

But can you eat meat and still maintain a sense of spiritual health and physical well-being? Those who encourage mindful eating believe it can be done. By treating animals with respect and raising them on diets that are fundamental to their health — letting cows graze on grass, for example — we can improve further upon the efforts of Sinclair. Reducing the number of factory farms (with their complete elimination as an eventual goal) is a major step in this direction. Recently, McDonald’s Corporation announced it would work toward phasing out gestation stalls for pregnant sows, a move that surprised many food activists and sparked some hope that big business would align with advocates for a more sustainable food system — similar to when Walmart started carrying organic produce. Bon Appétit Management Company, which operates over 400 cafés for corporations, universities, and museums, also announced this year that they are rolling out a comprehensive farm animal welfare policy. In all likelihood, more companies will make similar moves, and forward-thinking ranchers and farmers are beginning to sign up for certification programs, like Certified Humane and Animal Welfare Approved, which assure consumers of more humane practices.

In general, though, the mindful meat movement will rely on individual eaters who demand to know about the origin of what they’re eating. It’s akin to the local food revolution, which rallies eaters to “know your farmer.” Sales of organic meat increased more than 150 percent from 2002 to 2009, and the growth continues. Young butchers like those at Dickson’s Farmstand Meats in New York City are touting their relationships to the farms where they source their meat. Restaurants are including farm names on menus, along with descriptions of how the animals were raised. All of these changes are vital for increasing awareness and forging a connection to farmers and ranchers who make the effort to raise their animals with respect. For many who continue to eat meat, tapping into this movement can be a powerful way to stay out of The Jungle.

This article re-printed in partnership with Spirituality and Health magazine.  An amazing publication available on your newsstand or online, they offer some of the best content out there on living a conscious lifestyle.

If you enjoyed this article, you will also like:  ”Beyond the Plate: Mindful Eating of All We Consume“. 

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The Young Deer Whisperer

This is the latest in viral inspiration (and adorableness) brought to you by a little girl named Maya and her friend, a cute and curious fawn.

Maya was playing in her family’s yard when suddenly a baby deer appeared. He immediately approached Maya with trust and affection.  She made the little fawn feel safe and eventually led him back to the woods where his mom was waiting… an incredibly touching moment where two innocents connect.

The Deer Whisperer:

If you enjoyed this video, you will also like: “10 Reasons Kids are the Best Teachers“. 

(If you did not enjoy this video, you need to check your pulse and this article).  

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Video of The Day: Blind Dog Living in Trash Gets a Beautiful Rescue

animal rescue

animal rescueIf there are no dogs in Heaven, then when I die want to go where they went.
~Will Rogers

Get our your tissue boxes. And maybe your wallet too. Here’s to all the beautiful people out there making the world a kinder place for all creatures, big and small.

If you can, consider a donation to this wonderful organization: http://www.hopeforpaws.org

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