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13 May 2007 Issue

1. New Podcast - An interview with Dr. Stephen Kaufman

2. Message from Jeff Popick - Was MEAT the real “Forbidden Fruit?” New book says YES. 

3. Christianity and Violence: Animal Issues
(part 2 of 3)

1. New Podcast

The description is as follows: An interview with Dr. Stephen Kaufman, chair of the Christian Vegetarian Association, bible study and movie reviews, and other commentary.

2. Message from Jeff Popick
Was MEAT the real “Forbidden Fruit?” New book says YES.

You already know that eating meat is unhealthy, destructive to the environment and cruel to animals. But a new book now offers compelling and logical evidence that meat was the real “forbidden fruit.”

Is meat the cause of man’s fall from paradise? Is veganism the way back? You can find out right now, because we’ve arranged with the publisher and author of “The REAL Forbidden Fruit: How Meat Destroys Paradise And How Veganism Can Get It Back” for a very limited time, the availability of the book completely and totally free in instantly downloadable eBook format.

The book is scheduled to come out in hardcover June 15th with a cover price of $29.95. You can click on the link to get it right now – for FREE at http://therealforbiddenfruit.com/united-poultry-concerns.com 

“Jeff Popick is a passionate man with a compelling message. In The Real Forbidden Fruit he describes, often with great brilliance, the reasons he and many others feel both a moral and intellectual imperative to be vegan. As outspoken as he is thoughtful, Jeff Popick isn’t about to sit back in resignation and watch humanity descend ever deeper into darkness. Shining like a torch, his writings come from deeply held convictions, and profound concern for the welfare of all sentient beings.” -- John Robbins, author of Diet For A New America and Healthy At 100.

3. Christianity and Violence: Animal Issues
(part 2 of 3)

It is possible that Christianity offers a more solid basis for animal protectionism than either liberal or conservative orientations. Christians believe that all life comes from the Creator, who loves all of Creation. As children of God, we should honor and obey our Creator/parent. Honoring and obeying God is incompatible with unnecessary violence or destructiveness toward anything that God has made.

Those who seem insensitive or cruel toward animals are likely either be unaware of how industries treat animals today, or regard compassion as an optional attitude that one invokes when convenient. Because animal exploitation industries hide their crimes against God’s creatures, many people are not fully aware of the degree of suffering animals endure in order for humans to procure animal foods, skins, animal experimentation data, and other supposed “benefits” of animal exploitation. However, those who choose to remain unaware, such as those who reject animal welfare literature because “I don’t want to know,” are rejecting God’s creative goodness. Serving God faithfully requires mindfulness, and elective ignorance is no excuse.

Frequently, they justify their participation in animal cruelty by claiming that animal issues are irrelevant compared to human concerns. While those activities that help humans are laudable, simple lifestyle choices can easily and substantially reduce one’s complicity with respect to animal cruelty. It seems that those who elect not to take these easy steps have chosen to satisfy their personal desires (for foods, clothing, and other amenities derived from animals) over compassion. If I am correct, then they have compromised their commitment to God in order to gratify themselves. And, if this is their attitude toward animals, won’t this attitude easily transfer to fellow humans if social, political, or economic duress threatens their lifestyles? As Christian disciples, we must show love in all our relationships, and the Apostle Paul wrote, “And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing” (1 Corinthians 13:2). It is easy to seem loving and compassionate when one does not feel socially, politically, or materially threatened. However, when one is put to the test, without genuine love one’s prophetic powers, knowledge, and faith amount to nothing.

Because most forms of animal abuse have become institutionalized and mechanized, and because wealthy societies can afford more luxuries like meat and furs, it is likely that no society has ever caused more animal suffering and death than the U.S. does today. If animals could fully understand the magnitude of human abuse and the trivial reasons for most of it (e.g., taste preferences, fashion, entertainment), the animals would surely despise humankind, which leads me to wonder how God judges humankind, given how our society treats God’s own Creation.

Stephen R. Kaufman, M.D.

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