Cheese. Yoghurt. Steak!
There’s nothing that has escaped the impact of veganism this last 18 months.
Have you noticed even hair adverts are selling their products with “new vegan recipes”?!
You would have to be living under a rock (no judgement here) to have not realised how the vegan scene has taken the UK by storm.
Add on to that the continual environmental marches and protests and various stories flashing up on your news feeds about plastic in our seas and it’s blatantly clear that Going Green in whatever capacity is the buzzword of the moment - (buzzwords???).
And yet somehow…there are still people doing nothing.
I am not a preachy vegan. I am not a preachy anything. I believe in, as long as you’re doing no harm I will not judge - unless you’re wearing shorts with your bum cheeks hanging out and then damn b- you better be ready for an onslaught!
I don’t believe in pushing your ideals down peoples throat and I don’t believe in acting superior to others because you live a more conscientious existence.
But one of the things I have been asked repeatedly in my 4 years as a vegan and couple of years as a growing environmentalist is - why?
Why don’t you eat meat?
Why do you make such an effort?
Why do you deny yourself things?
I used to be a massive meat eater. And quite a self involved human being. (I’m not saying they go hand in hand!). But hey, I was 19! Ofcourse the world revolved around me.
And then, whilst watching my Mum nurse my Nan in her final days…I realised…it didn’t.
The world revolved. Full stop.
I was irrelevant. My existence could be deemed irrelevant.
What impact did I want to make? Even to my tiny section of the world in this lengthly timeline of humanity. What kind of footprint did I want to make?
And I realised the answer was none. Or as small as I could make it.
My Mum lent me a book that she had had for years - Ancient Wisdom for the Modern World by the Dalai Lama.
It changed my existence.
It started small.
Don’t use animal tested products - everytime I sprayed hairpsray or put on lipstick I could only picture the pain of an animal.
Don’t eat meat. If I can’t kill it why should I eat it.
Be kind…easier said than done!!
And then it rolled, like an ethical snowball snatching up every cause as it hurtled through life!
Where do your clothes come from? Did a child make them? Why do you need new things? You have money - give to charity! You’ve been promoted - give more! You now have no money, but you have more than most, give anyway! Cut out dairy. And plastic. And reuse and much as you can.
Once you open up your consciousness to one thing - it all comes flooding. You can’t ignore the pain or plight of anyone or anything and you feel the responsibility of making things better wherever you can.
And that’s why.
Because I refuse to go back to a selfish existence.
Don’t get me wrong, I am no monk! I make mistakes, I slack off sometimes, othertimes it’s due to necessity or financial restraints. But my Mum taught me the 80/20 rule. As long as you’re living your life 80% of the time by the morals and beliefs that you hold, the other 20% you’re just allowed to be human.
I don’t want the world to be vegan.
I don’t want people to stop going on holiday and enjoying themselves.
I don’t want people to put themselves in financial difficulty so they can give to others.
If I could ask one thing. It’s that everyone would pick something, just something that was a change for good in their world. Something that would reduce their self impact from an Army Boot to a High Top Trainer.
It’s amazing the difference that one thing can make both to the world and to how you view yourself as a person.