Page:Thirty-nine reasons why I am a vegetarian.djvu/13

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Being requested to explain to the readers of The Optimist why I am a vegetarian, I will compress within as small a compass as possible, some of the reasons that have induced me, during a long and eventful life, to partake of the direct products of the cultivated field, the garden and the orchard in preference to the productions of the abattoir, the pen, and the fattening stall.

1. I am an Optimist: I believe that human life is destined to become a divine life. That man is created for a higher condition than that of a carnivorous or an omnivorous animal.

2. In the progressive development from the animal to the spiritual man, there is necessarily a change in the habits of eating and drinking as well as in those of affection and thought.

3. A spiritual-minded man cannot partake of that which requires him to destroy the lives of inoffensive creatures in order to partake of their bodies because the very thought is repugnant to his nature.

4. Eating a lamb does not make a man lamb-like in his character any more than eating a missionary converts a savage into a Christian. It is the wolf-nature in man that is developed by killing and eating lamb, just as the cannibal nature is developed by killing and eating missionary.