Respectfully addressed to Teachers of Religion & Christianity.
Have you ever preached a sermon inculcating the duty of showing mercy and kindness to animals, or lifted your voice against the shocking barbarities which are taking place throughout Christendom — in the vivisecting laboratories, cattle-boats and trucks, slaughter-houses and elsewhere?
If Christ considered it necessary to proclaim that to be merciful is a duty and essential to true blessedness, and even to infer by His teaching that only those who shew mercy will obtain it, should not His representatives proclaim similar truths?
If God created mankind a frugivorous or fruit-eating Race—and our great Anatomists are unanimous in declaring this to be a. fact, is it not a serious violation of the Divine Will for man to descend to the level of the beasts of prey and live upon flesh and blood? Should not this form of unrighteousness be challenged and the evil nature of it be pointed out by Christian Ministers?
That flesh-eating is unnecessary, is proved by the evidence of hundreds of men and women in this and other lands who have lived upon a rational and hygienic diet (from which animal food is entirely excluded) for long periods of time, in the enjoyment of almost perfect health and vigour up to an extremely old age, requiring neither drugs or medical attendance. As the plea of necessity is thus proved to be fallacious, by what argument can the horrors of the shambles be justified?
If the religion of Jesus is based upon benevolence and self-sacrifice, and if the spirit of Christianity is essentially the manifestation of these qualities, how can there possibly be any harmony between it and the spirit which inflicts pain and death upon one’s fellow-creatures in order to pander to one’s degenerate appetite for flesh-meat, thus sacrificing others simply to gratify self.
As flesh-eating can be proved by overwhelming evidence to be an unnatural habit and a violation of God’s physical laws which produces most disastrous consequences to human souls and bodies, ought not those who have been made aware of these facts to teach the people, who look up to them as their spiritual leaders, to adopt a purer and more righteous system of living?
Is it perfectly consistent to stand before the world as a teacher of ethics and morality whilst aiding and abetting the massacre of sentient animals for food, after becoming cognizant that the practice of flesh-eating is totally unnecessary as well as injurious?
Has the thought ever occurred to you that if you confine yourself to the utterance or religious precepts, whilst your daily example and influence encourage men and women to demoralize their selves by carnivorous habits, your action somewhat resembles that of a person who picks up apples with one hand and throws them down with the other?
Have you ever seriously attempted to find out why, in spite of eighteen centuries of Christian influence, the inhabitants of Christian countries are still the victims of such widespread disease and depravity, whilst the most callous selfishness and indifference to the sufferings of fellow-creatures is manifested even in ” religious Society? “
Is not the fact, that thousands of earnest men and women are severing their connection with the Christian Churches—on account of their apathy and indifference concerning some of these great moral and physical evils of the present day—a very significant one?
The Herald of the Golden Age, August 1897