Volume 15 Issue 3 — July/August 2009
by Melva Armstrong
I chose the image of a cow for the front cover because it represents one of the many sentient barnyard creatures that is primarily raised for our eating purposes. Animal welfare is a big concern for many people regarding the business of raising, slaughtering, and eating these kinds of domestic animals, and in the overall debate about eating meat or not. I mention this now because I was recently reminded of these issues when I received a copy of an attractive new hardcover book called The Inner World of Farm Animals: Their Amazing Social, Emotional, and Intellectual Capacities by Amy Hatkoff, and foreword by Jane Goodall.
I showed the book to columnist Carol Marriott who is an animal lover and deeply dedicated to animal welfare. She read it, was both inspired and transformed by it, and has now written an article called A Journey Toward Conscious Eating: Acknowledging the Remarkable Capacities of the Animals We Eat (p. 42). In it she shares her own personal journey towards conscious eating and the struggles that have confronted her along the way. She says she is delighted with the touching and tender stories of these animals, as well as the beautiful photographs, but underlying that she is genuinely concerned about the inappropriate ways in which many farm animals are treated and raised.
Raising animals to eat is a subject about which I have had many different feelings throughout my life. When I was young I never really thought much about how animals were raised and treated, but over the years I have become more conscious of these things and frequently questioned my choices in eating meat. As well, I have often wondered whether these animals are raised humanely or mistreated. Years ago on a television news report, they showed hundreds of pigs in a huge barn, where a man was consistently whacking them hard on their backs with a big stick to make them move. I thought that was very cruel and unnecessary. Seeing that really bothered me and still does when I think about it. How could anyone do that? I don’t believe in using violence when raising animals, because as Hatkoff so beautifully points out, these farm animals “…demonstrate sophisticated problem-solving abilities, possess rich and social lives, and feel a wide range of emotions. In other words, they’re really no different from the dogs and cats we love so much… and they aren’t too different from us, either.” I think it is important for our world to have books like Hatkoff’s in order to help open readers’ hearts and minds, raising awareness of perhaps another “inconvenient truth” in a gentle but powerful way. I believe all living things deserve to be respected and shown compassion. My eternal hope is that we may all learn to live peacefully together and always remember to “do unto others as we would have them do unto us.”
Also in this issue Paulette Millis brings renewed attention to a very old and healthy tradition in her article Fermenting Foods for Flavour, Fun, and Nutrition! (p. 12) She says, “The health-giving properties and the complex tastes of fermented foods are good reasons to give yourself the opportunity to acquire a taste for and long for them.”
From healing with foods you can leisurely move on to discover The Healing Power of Crystals and Crystal Bowls in Marla Carlson’s article (p. 40), where she explains that, “Crystals help you discover your inner truth, your inner beauty, so you can step into infinite potential.”
Homeopathy is an ancient healing modality that Carol Thompson feels has been overlooked as a way of combatting the recent H1N1 virus. She explains the reasons for this in her article, Homeopathy Successfully Used for Leptospirosis Epidemic in Cuba (p. 18).
Julia Ross, best-selling author of The Mood Cure, will be speaking on October 5 in Regina about her ground-breaking work on nutritional therapy and brain health. We have included her article, Are There Safe Alternatives to Antidepressant Drugs? (p. 16), in which she points out that the concern about the safety of some of the most common antidepressant medications is reaching an all time high, and that her research over 25 years shows there is an alternative safe and effective holistic approach.
Be sure to check out all the other articles and advertisers which combined provide a wealth of information that you may find helpful for enriching your life and bringing you peace, joy, love, laughter, and abundance.
May you be filled with gratitude and thanks each day for the blessed bounty from Mother Earth that nurtures you.
(The Spirit in me honours the Spirit in you)