Ever since I was a child I have had a mental debate about eating meat. I was drawn to animals at an early age and have found them to bring me amazing personal rewards. However, I have never been a vegetarian and actually don’t believe in the practice.
I am a big believer in sticking to how our bodies were created to be. Nature and God have created a perfect system in our world. The cycle of predator and prey is very real and necessary to the balance of our earth. Some animals were intended to eat meat and to go against that causes their bodies injury and illness. Humans were designed to eat a variety of foods, including meat. However, the amount and kinds of meat we currently consume in today’s society does not match what nature intended.
So, my theory is that meat that is in its most natural state is the best for our bodies. In addition, eating the more prevalent animal meats like fish and chicken is also what is best. Saving the larger animals for the less frequent meals or feasts that would have been common after a large “kill.” Eating a variety of proteins from eggs, milk, seeds, beans, nuts, etc. is also important vs. making meat the main dish of every meal.
That said, I do treasure animals. But I am not opposed to eating certain ones – particularly the ones that would have typically been our prey. However, I think in raising our own meat (vs. hunting for it), we have to be fair and ethical to the animals. This is not only best for them, but also best for us — as healthy, happy animals make for the best nutrition for our bodies.
Now, I realize that much of this could be offensive to some. I know that I am judged by the fact we choose to raise meat and eat animals we “know.” Still, I don’t feel any shame or guilt for our decision. What I do feel is appreciation. Respect for the animals that we use on our farm. A higher knowledge of what a pig is vs. just a piece of bacon. In this, I do feel sadness at butcher time. But to me, that is part of the respect for the animal we have raised. It is this appreciation that ensures we take care of our animals for their health and ours.
If more people had this respect, not only would our diets be much healthier – so would the lives of the animals that are currently raised for our food system. This disconnect that is felt from not knowing the animal is creating a greater sadness about how animals are treated. And a greater concern about how that affects all our health. To me, that is the larger disservice.