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Monday, August 1, 2011

The Hawk, The Lion, and The Cardinal

"Climb the mountains and get their good tidings.  Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees.  The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves."
 - John Muir

Hi everyone.  May you have a simply wonderful day if only because you allow it to be so.

See the snow?  This is not my photo.  I live in Orlando.
As I was sitting on my back porch this past Saturday grilling some vegetables and looking out to enjoy some nature.  You know... birds on the feeder, lizards climbing the screen, butterflies tumbling through the air, and squirrels gathering the feeder left-overs.  Although I became a vegetarian primarily for health reasons, a nature related thought filled that little plastic bubble head of mine.

Again, not my hawk.  This hawk is from Texas, not Orlando.
I sometimes have a hawk problem (ugh!).  My smart little hawk friend knows where the neighborhood bird feeders reside and I regularly see his little ol' shadow streaking across my backyard through the trees.  I've even seen him snack on a poor innocent dove, rest on the roof of my shed awaiting his next meal, and even sitting on a tree branch mocking me.  I've ran outside yelling and flailing my arms to no avail.  This hawk just sat there on that branch inches beyond of my reach, looking at me as if I were a village idiot.

Nope.  Not my lions.  Haven't seen any in my back yard lately.
In any case, I began thinking of nature's carnivores and omnivores who stalk and kill it's prey.  The hawk who kills its prey, the African lions who kill their prey on those National Geographic specials, and those everyday occasions when you witness a cardinal swooping down to snag a bug in mid-air.  

It's a horrible event, isn't it?  Well... No, it's not.  It's part of nature and this beautiful planet of ours.  Animals whose instincts know no difference.  As taught to us from very early on, it's simply Mother Nature doing her thing.

"Okay, I get it Chucky.  But why are you telling me something that I already know and prefer not to think about?  Can you explain this to me please?"

As I was sitting on the back porch awaiting Tiffany to join me and staring out at nature, my little mind was churning away.  I dunno... I just simply do this sometimes.  What's the difference between these creatures and we humans?  Why do I frown upon eating meat (non-human animal flesh) when I simply accept the hawk, the lion and the cardinal living this way?

I'll tell you why.  The animal was designed to be either a carnivore or omnivore.  Human beings were not.  Okay, yes... Humans operate as omnivores but eating other animals is not a necessity but, rather a choice.  You do not have to eat that hamburger or steak in order to survive.  You have a plethora of non-animal based food choices that the hawk, the lion and the cardinal probably do not have.  To get by on a daily and seasonal basis to survive, the carnivore and omnivore must consume its prey.

I dunno.  It just seemed an interesting thought to me.  Why do we eat meat?  When did primeval mankind decide to consume meat?  Again, why?  When looking at our teeth, saliva, and other physical attributes, we're not designed to eat meat.

Can anyone tell my why I even needed to become a vegetarian in the first place?  Why?  Why were my parents, their parents, and I not raised as herbivores?

Just my thoughts.  You don't have to agree and you are certainly welcome to disagree.  Hey!  There is even a Comment link below.  Convenient, eh?

Hi-dee hi-dee human-beings-are-complex-creatures-ho my friend.


  1. I often wonder why vegans ever eat "mock" animal products. If you don't want to eat cheese or meat, why would you want to eat something that replicates it?

  2. Hi Anonymous. I tend to agree with you with those who were raised as vegetarian (or vegan). They had never tasted cheese and/or meat. The should possess no embedded desire to emulate these products.

    However, speaking for myself as a carnivore until October 2010, I have a history and mental recall of these non-vegetarian foods. Some of them I had rather enjoyed. I did not forgo meats for taste or ethical reasons. Instead, I became a vegetarian for health reasons. Soon thereafter I added the ethical treatment of animals as another reason to remain a non-carnivore.

    I hope that this provides at least one perspective?