“Animals are my friends…and I don’t eat my friends.” George Bernard Shaw
My name is Raja. I am from Madurai though right now I live in Coimbatore and I am a pure vegetarian.
Born and brought up in a family that cooked non-vegetarian, I used to eat non-veg at least three times a week. But my perceptions changed when I started reading about Gandhi, Einstein and Bernard Shaw. Their life and views had a profound impact on me, so much so that I stopped eating non-vegetarian.
The following are the lessons that I have learned since I became a vegetarian –
I became a vegetarian because I am against cruelty to animals. I don’t believe animals are any less than humans by any stretch of rational thinking. Feasting on their flesh or wearing their dead skin is both disturbing and disgusting to me.
Many of my friends said that animals are here only for humans to eat. Many want to question my reason to turn into a vegetarian rather than simply accepting the fact that I have changed. Though until a few years ago I too made fun of vegetarians, calling them ‘sambar’ and ‘thayir saatham’ (curd rice). Today, I am a vegetarian by choice, and I was well able to deflect their attack on my so-called madness.
Food choices are personal, not universal. All my family members are non-vegetarians. And they strongly believe that meat is good for health. I have never imposed my opinion on them. Some of my friends know for a fact that vegetarian food is good for health but they find it difficult to control their taste for non-veg food. I am not judgmental of their choice as food choices are truly personal by nature.
If you are arguing in favour of vegetarians, don’t tell people that they have a good heart and that they know the value of lives. In case you are wondering why, remember that even Hitler was a vegetarian.
Nature is an integral part of my life. My village is located near the Western Ghats. I love bird watching and trekking at Western Ghats. I have realized that vegetarianism can protect our environment as it protects the animals.
About Raja King
Raja is a B.Tech IT graduate from Madurai who is currently working as a business analyst in Coimbatore. He is interested in history, literature and art. He loves to write and dabble in political writing and analysis.