Showing posts from June, 2015

FAITH - Why I Am A Vegetarian Part 3

One of the determining factors for me in becoming a vegetarian was my faith. I'm not saying that the bible says ‘don’t eat meat ‘ because it doesn't (sometimes it almost seems that it says the opposite of this), but I do believe that I see a thread that runs through the bible and that points me towards a vegetarian lifestyle. Rob Bell discusses the idea that we currently live between two trees, on the one hand we live after the tree of knowledge in the book of Genesis (the first book in the bible), that caused problems in our world; on the other hand we live before the tree talked about in Revelation (the last book in the bible) that’s leaves will bring healing to the nations (I do believe that these trees are metaphorical not physical). In other words we live in the mess that has been caused by following our selfish desires. The scriptures points us towards what life will be like when God acts decisively in history and we move beyond selfishness. We see beautiful imag

LIFE - Why I Am A Vegetarian Part 2

When my partner and I started to reduce our meat consumption due to environmental reasons , I thought that meat was a necessary part of life, and that vegetarianism was an extreme choice. It was a quote by Leo Tolstoy (author of war and peace) that made me evaluate this assumption. The quote was: 'A man can live and be healthy without killing animals for food. Therefore, if he eats meat, he participates in taking animal life merely for the sake of his appetite.' This made me understand eating meat in a whole new light; there was no survival aspect, no real health benefits (we now live in a time where most of us can get all the necessary vitamins and minerals we need from alternative sources), no great purpose. I was purely eating meat because I liked the way it tasted, therefore I was putting my own hedonistic desires above the life of another creature. Due to this I came home one day and said to my partner ‘today I am becoming a vegetarian’. I don’t think that bei

EARTH - Why I Am A Vegetarian Part 1

In November I became a vegetarian. When people find out, they often ask me why, to this end I thought that I would outline my basic reasoning. The impact of the meat industry on the environment was one of the first reasons that caused me to look at vegetarianism. A recent published study found that the meat industry (especially red meat) is responsible for more carbon emissions than the entire transport sector (through water consumption, growing food for the livestock, fertilizer etc). Considering the amount that planes contribute to global warming this statistic should be quite shocking. At the same time vast swathes of rain-forest every year are cut down to make pasture land to rear more animals for the meat industry, contributing further to the problem. Due to this my partner and I began to reduce our meat consumption to a less detrimental level. I don’t believe that everyone is called to be a vegetarian, but I do believe that each of us can reduce our meat cons

TRINITY - The Trinity In Revelation as a Movement Towards Egalitarianism

I recently read the book ‘The Shack’, its quite old now, but I remember the outrage that it caused by its conveyance of the trinity. In our minds (and academic circles) the trinity is often viewed as a very male anthropomorphism with a set hierarchy (the father at the top, then the son, then the spirit). This is usually understood from the way the trinity is laid out in scripture. In the book of Revelation we see a different formula that people usually miss. At the beginning of the book it says: 'Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne, and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth.' Here we see the father (who was, who is, and who is to come), followed by the spirit (the seven spirits), and then the son. This formula is based on the layout of the Jewish temple, working from the middle outward. The first is the thron

CREATURES - The Four Creatures of Revelation as a Model for Environmental Care

I recently read another article about our impact on the environment, another warning that so many are dismissing. In the letter ‘ Revelation ’, the final book of the bible, we see a scene in a throne room.  In the center of the room is a throne, upon which God sits, and around the throne is 4 creatures : one like a lion , one like an ox , one like a man and one like an eagle .  Day after day they sing praise to God. In a 1 st century Jewish mindset, each of these four creatures stands for the different aspects of creation:  The lion for the wild animals .  The ox for the tame animals . The man for humanity . The eagle for birds .  Each aspect of life bringing forth its hymn of praise. In this picture, we as humanity are creatures alongside all life , joining in the hymn of creation, not dominants, controlling it, bending it to our will, exploiting its resources. In this picture we are in a symbiotic relationship understanding our reliance upon a