Another Step Toward Vegetarianism
~ His Holiness the Dalai Lama
Last weekend while driving on the interstate I passed a huge flatbed truck carrying about a hundred cages full of live chickens. Within each individual cage the chickens were jammed in on top of each other, and through the vents in each cage you could see the chickens struggling and squawking at each other, feathers flying out of the cages and onto the highway. There was no way to deny that these sentient beings were suffering.
I had been leaning toward pesco-vegetarianism lately anyway, and seeing this sight (which literally nauseated me and the friend who was riding with me) sealed the deal. I can’t imagine eating chicken again without seeing that nauseating image of living creatures piled on top of each other.
The “pesco” part of pesco-vegetarianism refers to fish, which I’ll continue to eat, along with organic dairy products and eggs from certified free-range chickens. I know that fish are sentient beings just as chickens are, and I make no claims to consistency. Perhaps in time I will work my way toward being a 100% vegetarian or vegan. But taking this step, to no longer participate in the sufferings of most animals that are used for food, is what I feel called to do at this time.