Saturday, March 29, 2014

TD10-4 Major Life Changes

I’m a vegetarian mainly because I don’t like seeing animals tortured and abused, much less slaughtered.  I’ll never understand hunting, or the mindset that goes with it.  How could anyone think killing things is fun?  Seeing suffering and death hurts me so much that I base my food, clothing, and other choices around not being a part of it.  I have to, it can’t be something I knowingly contribute to.

I ate meat for twenty nine years, been a vegetarian for twenty five plus years now.  I never felt right about it.  Hunting never interested me.  Any time neighborhood kids would torture animals for “fun” – I have to believe anyone who was a kid saw some of that growing up – it hurt me.  I felt hypocritical eating meat but never really being interested in killing and/or skinning my own animals.  Even fishing, which I did a little bit of when I was young, bothered me.

I had issues with drugs and alcohol in my teens and early twenties to deal with.  Once I quit using (at age twenty nine), a month later I quit eating meat.  I had to change my moral compass.  For me, this was a huge thing.  Start living by a set of moral standards aligned with what I felt was right.

I thought it would be hard to quit as I liked the taste of meat, and I had a hard time imagining meals without it.  It really wasn’t hard at all, and as an added bonus I believe a strict vegetarian diet is much healthier as well.  I certainly felt way better physically within a couple weeks of not eating meat.

By the time you’re old enough to think about what you’re doing… the pain and anguish you’re causing by your food choices… you’re already sucked in to the “meat as a way of life” dining program.  Like anything in life, changing that can be hard.  First, you really have to want to.  In a strange way, I have a certain respect for the meat eaters that can hunt and kill their own animals… at least they know what they’re doing and have no problem killing their own meal.  I wasn’t one of those, though.  I was the “as long as someone else kills and packages this I’ll eat it” meat eaters.  Kill my own, no thanks.  And that just seemed hypocritical to me…

Then, on Nov 1, 1988 I decided to never use drugs and/or alcohol again.  And I haven’t.  I changed my life the second I made that choice and committed to it.

A month later, I quit eating meat.  Two choices made in two instants within a month of each other by a twenty nine year old that I maintain to this day and have changed the course of my life tremendously.

Are you living your life in alignment with what your inner conscience tells you is right for you?

Visualize your perfect life – what would it look like?  How would you spend your time?  With whom would you spend it?  How would you treat people?  What would you do for a living?

Now, take a long hard look at where your life is at currently… do they match?  Why not?  What is it that stands in the way of leading the life you’d like to live?

I was asked those questions twenty five years ago and drugs and alcohol were number one on my list.  Not living by any moral standards, no relationship with God was number two.  In two days I made choices that changed that forever.  Changing your thoughts can change your life, but you have to commit and stick to it, which is why so many people make big changes in life after “hitting bottom”.  You need a strong emotional motive to keep going with any major life change.