Conscious Evolution? What are we talking about?
It is believed that with natural selection, traits that aid survival flourish, while traits that hinder survival eventually die off. Since consciousness is something we are said to have evolved, for the very purpose of aiding us in our survival, then we can say that some of us are now consciously choosing to evolve by changing a behaviour that is damaging to us.
Diabetes, cancer, heart disease, obesity and depression are directly related to our growing consumption of over-processed, chemically doused food and animal products (read Plant Based Nutrition and Health, by Stephen Walsh, PhD.), so we can see that our standard western diet is clearly affecting our chances of survival. These diseases are skyrocketing and there is no sign of slowing down.
If I raise my son this way I am passing this advantage down to him, (in this case, consciously, not genetically). But if, on the other hand, I am doing something over and over again that decreases my chances for maintaining good health and a thriving living environment then I am harming myself, and not consciously evolving.
The Earth is dwindling as we pollute our environment recklessly. One of the top causes of this pollution is factory farming, which is where almost all of our meat, dairy, eggs and animal by-products come from. The excrement of billions of animals, bred for us to eat, leaches into our water systems and causes more harmful greenhouse gas emissions than all industry combined (now believed by WorldWatch.org and other researchers, to be more than 51% of all human-caused greenhouse gas emissions).
Our precious topsoil is depleted as forests are cleared for grazing, and more than 70% of grains in the U.S. are fed to livestock, instead of people. It’s illogical, at best. (Stats taken from Livestock and Climate Change Report, by Robert Goodland and Jeff Anhang. World Watch, Nov. Dec. 2009, www.worldwatch.org).
Animals in the wild know not to soil their nest because it’s bad for them. We humans behave more like parasites, consuming and destroying our host as we grow in numbers. Because of our careless actions, our environment has become toxic, and survival of the fittest, or survival of the most cooperative with nature, will be the result. Evolutionary impulse is a term used to describe a change in the environment that triggers a change within an organism in order to increase its chances of survival. And adaptation is a term that describes the process whereby an organism becomes better suited to its habitat. We are connected to the Earth in ways we can’t fully understand, and we have to work together to co-exist.
(Photo below taken by James Toth)
So should we continue in the direction we are headed, or take the path of sustaining ourselves on plant-based diets? No doctor who is properly educated in nutrition (and yes, there are uneducated doctors, especially in nutrition) will advise us to increase our intake of meat and cheese to become healthier; so the answer seems clear.
We don’t want to start a war between vegans and non-vegans. We simply want to open up a dialogue about the problems we are all facing, and use logic instead of fanaticism to create change. If something is truly better for us, and our environment, then we should pursue it with the same enthusiasm that brought us to this tipping point in the first place. No one likes change, but it’s unavoidable and, right now, mandatory.
"Vegetarian food leaves a deep impression on our nature. If the whole world adopts vegetarianism, it can change the destiny of humankind." -Albert Einstein.
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