Saturday, January 17, 2009

1. Why do you think the topic of Eating Meat Sparingly, as advised in the Word of Wisdom is never fully addressed, and usually skirted over, in gospel discussions on the Word of Wisdom?


  1. Hope you don't mind my joining the conversation. One of my blogs, Less Meat is linked here on recipes, so I hope that makes my comment welcome.
    I believe that we have focused so heavily on the don't parts of the word of wisdom that we completely forgot about the do parts. The word of wisdom says right out in the beginning that it is going to be difficult to eat the right way because of "conspiring men." I think it is so hard to go off the beaten path and discover a healthier and better way of eating/living. I also believe we just don't know any better. If all you ate was meatloaf, roast,burgers, and chicken for your main dishes growing up you aren't going to be as familiar with beans or quinoa.
    I have a HUGE testimony of the promise of the word of wisdom. As I've delved into eating meat more sparingly I feel absolutely flooded with "great treasures of knowledge, even hidden treasures." Just you wit, as your group gets going, you will be amazed at how many wonderful treasures of knowledge and wisdome await!
    Anyway, this is a great blog and I hope you don't mind if I share my opinion every now and then.

  2. I'm sure that there are many reasons why we avoid it. But one good reason to address it is because it can save us lots of money! When I was first married, we had a rule that we could only eat meat a few times a week in order to save money. That means that we ate tofu or beans at least once a week as our source of protein. My husband is hypoglycemic, so I have to really watch the protein/carb balance, and it always was fine with meals with tofu or beans. So, maybe the Lord was also watching out for our budgets as well as our health when he gave us the Word of Wisdom.

  3. I think this blog is fabulous! Thank you for starting it. This is why I don't eat meat. And being LDS, I get a lot of people who give me a hard time about it.

    The meat industries not only produce a ton of animals so that we can eat them for breakfast, lunch and dinner, but they poorly manage the waste products from these animals. 1 cow produces 120 lbs of manuer per day. That's the same as 30-40 humans waste put together. That waste gets dumped in our waters, in the ground and kills millions of fish in our lakes and spreads bacteria like wild fire. So now we have land degeneration and water pollution.

    Secondly, you have the humane aspect. These animals are not only bred to be so disgustingly fat that their legs break when they stand, but they are literally tortured to death. It is disgusting to even condone such a thing. (I'm really not a bitter PETA activist I promise). Heavenly Father did not want us to treat any living thing this way. How can we be so hipocritical to preach love for thy neighbor but then turn our backs on the billions of animals that are being tortured for our dinner plates?

    thirdly, the health aspect. We are the fattest nation in the world. We use us 60% of the worlds resources (including food). Meat does not help with cholesterol, weight loss and heart disease. Heavenly Father said, "eat meat sparingly" yet we never consider what comes after that. "And it is pleasing unto me that they should not be used, only in times of winter, or of cold, or famine." We are not in a famine. In fact, we are far from one in this nation. So why not eat the grains of the earth and herbs and fruit and vegetables that are so much more healthier for us than meat?

    So back to your original question, I think its skirted over so quickly because we don't want to know or hear the truth about meat. We don't want to really open our eyes to the wisdom of those words. We don't like change and we don't want to have to change our lifestyles even when we know it will be better for us.

  4. I think "sparingly" is all relative. It depends on who's doing the interpretation... Once a week, three times a week... Also, which "meat" are they referring to? Is poultry considered "meat"?

    I will try to be there on Tues. Gotta get me a babysitter. :) Thanks!

  5. Juanique (or tristin),

    Thank you so much for your contribution. You are right on so many levels. What ultimately inspired you to cut meat out of your diet? I have found that with me, it was one thing that really sparked it and then it's like the floodgates opened and I kept wanting to read more and study more and it was just all making more and more sense.

    You are right though, it is a hard topic in the church because it is so cultural. We are so accustomed to eating meat. How do you balance living what you believe, teaching by example and being polite about it in church settings? Do you find that people are intimidated by your choice? What reactions have you encountered?

  6. Monkey Mama, I think I have your babysitter covered. Amanda has offered to watch my boys at my in-law's house (very near Nichole's home) and she said that she would watch yours too. We can both chip in to pay her.

    I am going to write an answer to your sparingly question under the question addressing the word sparingly.

  7. I have been thinking about this a lot. I'm not trying to play devil's advocate, but I don't know that the issue really is skirted over. The Church is often not specific in its counsel. Just like they don't tell us what movies we should or shouldn't see, they don't tell us what to eat. We have guidelines. We have the Holy Ghost and prayer. The rest is up to us. Also, I think that we focus more on the don'ts because they are more critical. The effects that those substances can have on our bodies and our lives can do a lot more harm than eating meat.

  8. When I say skirted over, I mean mostly by members of the church, not the prophets. I actually think that church leaders don't skirt it. They have given us very good counsel about what we should eat. Usually any discussion in church about the Word of Wisdom will not talk about meat needing to be eaten sparingly. Members on the whole, do not seriously consider this. They hear it and say, yeah, yeah.

    I know I never had truly considered it until recently.

    Past prophets HAVE said specifically that we should not watch R rated movies. Some members do not know this though, or don't want to know this. In my reading, past prophets have specifically said that we should eat meat sparingly. Some prophets hardly ate it.

    Also, I have begun to wonder just how much effect meat has on our bodies. Do we even know? I think science is just starting to realize this. At the time the WoW was given people didn't know that tobacco and alcohol were bad. We now know that these substances cause disease and health problems and possible death. What about all of the heart health problems and cancers??? Are those related to meat? We don't know for sure. But considering the immensity of health problems and the American diet, I wouldn't put it past meat to be a culprit.

    You are right about us needing to govern ourselves, that is a very specific doctrine of our church. I just think that as a whole, we don't take this part of word of wisdom very seriously and don't ever really question it, consider it or pray about it.

  9. Ok, so maybe the movie thing was a bad example. :)

    Let me re-answer the question. This is just my theory.

    Lesson manuals mention the do's but clearly focus on the don'ts. So that's what we discuss. The guy that's saying yeah, yeah to the do's is probably doing so because he hasn't heard a lesson or conference talk about eating meat sparingly and hasn't taken the time to ponder it. It's easier not to.

  10. You're right. I guess if it was as important right now, the manuals and lessons would emphasize it more. I wonder though if they are almost asking us to do it in phases. The church is doing pretty well at the don'ts. I wonder that now that the members can handle the do not's, if there will be an emphasis on the Do's in the future.

    I also feel like for those of us who completely have the do not's under control, we can, as the article mentioned "step it up" a bit and work on the do's of the word of wisdom.

  11. It makes me sad to think of how the animals on the "farms" are treated. Pigs tails are cut off to prevent them from chewing them off from stress, laying hens are so cooped in a cage and never even get to stand, also their beaks are cut off so they won't peck each other to death. They are fed awful unnatural diets, plus lots of synthetic hormones and such. In my opinion, I don't think this is what the Lord intended for animals to enjoy the measure of their creation and have joy.

  12. HI Likely! Its been a while since I last posted on here. You asked why I gave up meat. I did it because I never really ate it to begin with. I never craved it, never felt like I had to have it everyday of my life like it was water to me. I guess that I naturally didn't really want it or need it. I was anemic when I ate meat and when I became vegetarian I was no longer anemic (so if people tell you they are anemic and NEED their meat, it's not true, it's probably just an excuse). I met my husband and he was completely vegetarian along with his family. He told me that he read this book called "the China Study" which is a book compiled of longterm research and study on how meat effects the body's health. You probably have already read it but if not, I definitely recomend that everyone reads it. So I read it and it made COMPLETE sense, that meat is not healthy for our bodies and causes many problems. So I cut it out completely :)

    How I balance my healthy life style with living what I believe, being an example and being polite about it in the church is by not being pushy about it. People ask me why I eat the way I do and so I tell them the reasons (health, ethics, etc). I get a lot of people throw at me "but we're told to eat meat" and I tell them that we're told to in times of famine and then lightly joke that we're not in a famine :) I never try to make a big deal about it. I think that by just showing how healthy I am is a big enough statement in itself. I seldomly ever get sick (Once a year maybe) I'm not fat, I'm very fit and health and alert. I've had a few people tell me that I'm going to have to account for this sin and I just laugh. What a silly thing to say, right? People have a hard time accepting things/people who are different to them. I realize that that's their problem to deal with and to not take it personally.


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