I propose that Jewish vegans and vegetarians join together to form a new, distinct Movement within Judaism. Since at least the 1960s there have been organizations that have promoted vegetarianism and veganism for Jewish people. However, none of these organizations became movements similar to the other movements of Judaism. I believe that if veganism or vegetarianism are ever going to win over a large portion of the Jewish population, an explicit philosophy of Jewish veganism and the creation of an identifiable Movement for Vegan Judaism must simultaneously work in tandem to win over more Jews to a vegan lifestyle. I therefore propose the following statements as guiding principles for the formation of Vegan and Vegetarian communities:
1. We respect the inherent worth of all sentient creatures and their right to life free of human inflicted suffering.
2. Killing sentient, non-human animals unnecessarily is immoral.
3. The harmful exploitation, abuse, and killing of non-human animals is unnecessary, and therefore unethical, in a post-industrial society in which people can easily live without animal products.
4. Veganism is not in conflict with traditional or modern Jewish law, tradition, belief, or practice.
5. A vegan lifestyle will facilitate the keeping of kashrut and promote Jewish ethics. Veganism is an ideal expressed in Jewish tradition as a means to be compassionate toward non-human animals; to respect the psychological, economic, and physical well-being of humans; and to keep kosher in accordance with Jewish law.
6. Veganism helps to fulfill the Jewish responsibility to care for the earth. Veganism promotes environmental responsibility and stewardship and has been shown to be ecologically sustainable and better for the environment than animal consumption.
7. A balanced vegan diet has been proven to be more healthy than an animal based diet for the vast majority of people, and thus adopting a vegan diet fulfills the Jewish commandment to “choose life” in more ways than one.
8. We believe in the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process in our communities. There will be no theological or dogmatic test for membership so long as the prospective member is a Jew who supports the vegan or vegetarian lifestyle.
9. We will accept one another and encourage one another as we practice a vegan lifestyle in accordance with our practice of Judaism.
10. We will promote a vegan lifestyle to our families, friends, acquaintances, and the larger Jewish community. Our veganism is an expression of our Judaism, and we believe that veganism is a proper expression of Jewish ethics, values, and tradition in the modern world.
from ramanandan http://ift.tt/2gunYnw